Keeping Busy in Star Trek Online
Unlike other MMOs, there are always plenty of events scheduled in the Star Trek Online. The game includes a handy calendar which provides information on what is planned for the months ahead. It’s a clever way to keep the players engaged and occupied and as a result, STO is the game that I tire with the least and dabble with most. Where other games will often end the year with a nebulous Producer’s letter which offers a road map hinting at what lies ahead over the next twelve months, STO just gets on with things. Q’s Winter Wonderland event is drawing to a close next Thursday, but already we have two new events that have launched today. The Arena of Sompek makes a welcome return with its five-man survival battle against endless waves of mobs. Then we have a Featured Episode Replay, offering an opportunity to repeat specific missions and receive rewards that have been previously retired, such Breen and Romulan Bridge Officers and Epic Ground devices such as The Shard of Possibilities and the Ophidian Cane.
There’s another change on the horizon for STO. At present upgrading gear is very much a lottery as you have no control over the modifiers that you receive. However, this will soon change with the games new re-engineering system. Players will be able to alter the mods that don’t suit their build or are deemed as sub-optimal to their game play. Re-engineering will utilise a new currency, salvage, a resource granted through the recycling of unwanted gear. Cryptic are currently working on the specifics of the system and it will soon be tested on Tribble server. Re-engineering will also showcase some new epic mods as an incentive. In a recent blog post Cryptic said “We hope re-engineering will be a way for neophyte and veteran Captains alike to better create equipment that matches their particular playstyles and builds.” The new mechanic will hopefully have a knock-on effect on the games economy, reducing Energy Credit creation and the existing surplus of unwanted gear on the exchange.
Star Trek Online is also due an expansion in 2018. So far, all we know about it is that it will be focused on Deep Space Nine, the Dominion, and possibly the Gamma Quadrant. As the TV show Star Trek: Deep Space Nine is twenty-five years old this year, it makes sense to return to this region and explore the story further. Cryptic have previously made all new content for the game free of charge, so unless they have a radical change of policy, the next expansion should follow suite. Then in February we have the eighth anniversary of STO. This will mean a special project that will offer a new ship as a reward. Perhaps Cryptic may take the opportunity to tie the game into Star Trek: Discovery? And as well as all this, we can expect regular events such as First Contact Day and the Summer and Winter Festivals. If there’s a Friday the 13th in the year, we’ll also see the episode Hearts and Minds make an appearance. As you can see STO has a busy schedule for 2018, with plenty to do. Unlike other examples of the genre, STO appears to be in a good place at present with a lot of content lined up. Hence it remains my go to MMO for the fourth year.