The joy of a lifetime subscription is that you can hop back into a game any time you want; all you need is a desire to return and the time it takes for the game to patch back up.
After a near six-month hiatus, I decided I’d try out STO again this weekend — and in my case, the patching took quite a bit of time. As I was about to find out, all that downloading meant that the game had improved considerably.
Look, I have a problem, okay?
GeeCee astutely called me out earlier — I decided to start a new character. But I have a justification or two! No, really!
First, it’s like the great Melmoth once said, much better than I can — I find it hard to pick back up old characters. I know that I like ol’ Captain Xerxes, but the spark just isn’t back yet. Worse, I’ve forgotten what half of my crew’s abilities do, and that’s not even getting to the changes Cryptic has made. So, a new character seemed in order.
Secondly — I’ve always wanted to play a male Cardassian engineer. My love of the Cardassians isn’t new, but I’ve been holding off making an Alien-gen Cardassian because I wanted Cryptic to release an ‘official’ one.
And you know what? I’m done waiting. So meet Ensign — now Lieutenant — Trajan Rangar.
To help make him, I downloaded a Cardassian character template from STO Academy. It got the head perfect, but I ended up shifting the neck bulk to the maximum, and very near did the same thing to shoulder bulk. Come on! If Cardies don’t have bulging neck scales, then what are they?!
I also took this opportunity to do something I had always wanted to do…
… I killed 1,000 Borg on the U.S.S. Khitomer, earning me the “Assimilate This!” passive buff and achievement.
It was really quite simple, once I correctly set-up autofire in the game’s options. 😀
band ship back together
Of course, a new character means a new ship with a new bridge crew. You’ve already met Wilde, and since I fully intend to write bios for rest of the crew, at present I’m not going to speak much more on that.
But the ship — well, that’s a different story. As much as I like the Constitution-class vessel that Xerxes loved to fly around, I wasn’t feeling it this time. So I bit the bullet and bought the NX-class Replica, along with rest of the set (I mean, those Mirror Universe outfits are sweet!)
Even though Enterprise wasn’t my all-time favorite show, I did like it (especially its excellent last seasons), and I’m glad that Cryptic did such a good job bringing the NX into the game. I’m already thinking up explanations for why the heck I’m flying around the Delta Volanis cluster with a historical replica.
I am very pleased with the updates STO has seen in my absence. Sector space is absolutely gorgeous and a pleasure to fly through; I particularly like the lore that pops up when you fly to a new system. The GUI’s font has been considerably improved, too — I keep smiling at how such a small change makes everything look nicer. Even the game itself seems to run a little better and smoother, despite so many players — when I logged in Sunday evening, I saw more activity around Earth than I had ever seen before!
One thing that threw me for a loop was the revamped-revamped crafting system. I had stuck my head back into the game right after the first crafting revamp, so I was anticipating needing to upgrade evenly-ranked items that I purchased from vendors at Memory Alpha. However, the new schematic system appears to allow players to craft items completely out of data samples, which is really nice. Furthermore, the different advancement ‘trees’ have apparently been collapsed into one, making crafting progression much easier. (If I’m wrong, please correct me!)
On the whole, the game has begun to feel much more like Star Trek, and that’s even before I’ve played the new missions. I’m looking forward to playing more — hopefully the Foundry is released soon, and I can start building non-Tribble missions!