With the new Research and Development system coming in Season 9.5, Star Trek Online is adding even more ways to obtain R&D materials to the game. The most noticeable additions are added R&D material rewards in PvE queues and a new C-Store pack available for purchase.
In addition to their normal rewards, PvE queues will now drop an additional Research and Development Material Reward Package. This pack comes in two main types - a Normal Queue R&D Material Reward Package and an Advanced Queue R&D Material Reward Package. The normal pack is given as an additional reward in normal queues and contains a random assortment of 20 R&D materials (10 common, uncommon or rare materials, 7 uncommon or rare materials, and 3 rare materials). The Advanced pack, on the other hand, is given as an additional reward in elite queues and contains a random assortment of 25 R&D materials (5 common materials, 10 common, uncommon, rare or very rare materials, 7 uncommon, rare or very rare materials, and 3 rare or very rare materials).
Gathering very rare materials presents additional challenges beyond just completing an Elite queue. Because these materials are hard to come by, we wanted to make sure that if you were rewarded with very rare materials that you'd know which specific material you'd be getting. This means that each queue, based upon where it takes place (ground or space) and a few other factors will only reward one type of very rare material. For instance, playing an elite space STF against the Borg, like Khitomer Vortex, will reward Trellium-K from all Advanced packs earned while playing that queue. Likewise, playing an elite ground queue against the Undine such as Undine Infiltration will reward Dentarium from all Advanced packs earned while playing that queue. To help players keep track of what potential very rare material can be obtained from a given Advanced pack, that very rare material will be listed parenthetically in the name of the pack (e.g. Advanced Queue R&D Material Reward Package (Trellium-K)).
Other methods of gathering R&D materials in game include harvest nodes, which can be found in any story mission map. Select Duty Officer assignments have been updated to offer rewards of the new R&D materials. There is also a new Duty Officer assignment "Request R&D Assistance" that is available at Starbase and Shipboard Recruitment Officers, which rewards R&D materials as well as a rare chance at School Specialist Duty Officers.
For those looking for a leg up on their competition, Research and Development Booster Packages are available in the C-store for 300 ZEN. These packs includes: 40 R&D materials (15 common materials or better, 15 uncommon materials or better, 6 rare materials or better, and 3 very rare materials), 8 R&D components (3 Mk II or better, 3 Mk VI or better, and 2 Mk X or better) and 3 R&D catalysts that can be used to increase your effective school skill on a given project, yielding a higher chance to create a higher quality item. A bundle of 4 R&D Booster Packages is also available at a discount, for 1,000 ZEN.
Lead Content Designer
Star Trek Online