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Star Trek Online

Ask Cryptic: March 2011

By admin | Thu 03 Mar 2011 04:55:08 PM PST

Executive Producer Dan Stahl has programmed your replicator to deliver these 34 fresh answers to your questions in this month's Ask Cryptic!

1. Fractal_Eye - Q: When will we get Porthos pets?

A: We will continue to add pets over time. Once we are happy with the number of ambient animals being represented in missions we will start adding more of these as player pets. It would be fun to see these pets randomly roaming your ship interior as well.

2. Jennau116 - Q: Are we going to see more of the Bridge/Ship Interiors get the same love (as the new TOS interior)?

A: The upcoming TOS interior is one of our continued attempts to reduce the size and scale of interiors and still allow some types of game-play. Once we have that interior finished and can run some game-play tests, we can make a call as to whether we can go back and update existing bridges and interiors.

3. Tricksterbro - Q: I was wondering what your plans were for releasing mission and story content other than the featured episodes when they come to an end?

A: Once “Cloaked Intentions” wraps up next week, we will be focused on the Beta release of the Foundry on Holodeck so that everyone may begin to create and play missions. After that we will prepare the Season 4 release with Ground Combat updates, more Remastered Episodes, an updated Tutorial experience, and an update to Klingon mission progression. We have some other content plans that we have in the works as well, but we’re not talking about that just yet.

4. nailpeter83 - Q: Are there any plans to do anything with the Probe from Star Trek IV?

A: It is on the short of list of topics we’ve considered for Future Episode series, but I think it will be further down the road than some of the other series we want to get to.

5. Walshicus - Q: Are there any plans to increase the number of equipment types available to... equip?

A: You can think of your Active Duty Officer Roster as an entirely new paper doll for your starship that you’ll need to start collecting for as what you have in your roster will impact your ship.

6. Trek17 - Q: Will ships ever have dorsal and ventral shields? (top and bottom)

A: Even though the shield indicator is broken up into 4 quadrants, your shields are already 360 degrees around your ship. Those 4 quadrants are broken down into “orange slices”. So when you get shot from above, we do calculate which of your shields was impacted. We felt this was cleaner and easier to manage than true top/bottom shielding.

7. wed horror - Q: Will you implement a "switch" or something so we can turn off our Bridge NPC´s so we can use the Bridge for Role-play?

A: We are working closely with the Champions Online team on a big update for interiors that will allow players much more control over what is displayed and available on their ship interior. We don’t have a solid eta for this, but it is something that both of our teams are developing as a cool new feature that will greatly improve ship interiors.

8. DominikScholz - Q: Will there be something like Shuttle PVP?

A: We are looking at possible maps from Feature Episode series that we can convert to more PVP maps and one of the top contenders is the Vault interior. If we did that, we could easily envision a shuttle pvp scenario.

9. picardalpha2clearance - Q: Why is the duty roster system not utilizing Bridge Officers or Non- Commissioned BOs as we asked for?

A: The idea of making one of your Bridge Officers the “lead” of a department is still a feature we plan to implement. We first want to get the Duty Officer system in and functioning before we add it. Once that system is in game and we’ve had time to see the impact it has on the game, we can then move on to adding department chiefs.

10. DevorahQuinn - Q: Are we going to get new kits any time soon?

A: We are working with our character art department to put this on the schedule for Season 4 or shortly. While it is mostly cosmetic, there are some implications with the Ground Combat update in that some of the powers on these kits may change slightly and we want the new kit geo to reflect those changes.

11. Omega Hunter 9 - Q: Now that Multi-Vector Assault Mode will be tied to a console and not a new ship, will there be more console-based abilities coming for other Tier 5 ships?

A: While not specifically tied to Tier 5 ships, we are discussing a change to lower level ships that would allow you to pull specific console powers from those ships and take them with you when you rank up to a new ship. The theory being that as you progress in ranks, you are collecting a slew of unique cool consoles. The end game strategy will then be deciding which consoles to slot on your T5 ship.

12. SFZEROSF - Q: Now that we have a Light Escort (NX Class), a Light Cruiser (TOS Constitution), and a Jack-of-all-Trades (Miranda), will we be getting the Oberth or other Science Equivalent soon?

A: The Oberth is coming in either April or May and we will continue to fill in gaps when we can for both Fed/Klg ship charts.

13. TerilynnS - Q: WHO does the voice for Obisek? <3

A: The character Obisek, a Reman protagonist in the Cloaked Intention series, is voiced by the very talented Eric Newsome.

14. NightWatcher - Q: Any word on when the Tier 6 ships will be released?

A: T6 ships are intended to be flown by Fleet Admirals and will become available when we up the level cap to this rank. No firm ETA on this but my best guess is that it is somewhere between Season 5 and Season 6.

15. stevek765 - Q: Ds9 is very quiet and it could really do with some life being put into it and also more space activity, cargo ships etc. Have you guys been discussing anything towards DS9 future? I think a weekly series set just on ds9 would be very welcomed by the community.

A: In our Feature Episode series planning session today we were discussing that we may be visiting DS9 in one of the next Feature Episodes. When we do, we plan to give DS9 some love.

16. Allerka - Q: Will the planned changes (to Kerrat) make it impossible to complete all these accolades, or will they carry over in some way? Or should I just start sacrificing any semblance of sleep and weekends for the next few months?

A: We do plan to change a decent amount of existing PVE Klingon content for the launch of Season 4. So you have at least until the end of June before it is changed. If there is a way we can carry over the Accolades, we will.

17. Kumori_Ookami - Q: When will we get voices for our bridge officers? The spot for a voice has been an empty drop down menu for ages.

A: We are actively trying to hire a software developer to help get features like this (back) into the game. Please check our careers page to see what openings we currently have.

18. herocreator - Q: You guys have mentioned a desire (in the future) for a territory control type thing. Anything you can tell us about what it might look like?

A: We were discussing ways that we might be able to start the ball rolling on this feature with the new Duty Officer Assignment missions coming in Season 4. I’ve always expected any sort of territory control to heavily involve FED vs. KDF and include both PVE and PVP elements.

19. cmmbmgrp - Q: I know that STO lore says that Starfleet opted to remove the Multi-Vector Assault Mode from the Prometheus Class. Even so, It would be awesome for my Prometheus to have that capability. Are there any plans for this?

A: Yes. If you already have a Prometheus ship, you will be able to pick up the MVAM console and slot it in your existing ship to get the new power.

20. scorpiobe - Q: We used to be able to put an acquired Bridge Officer in our Fleet Bank. Of course this is not a nice thing to do. Lol! Will it ever be possible to have some kind of fleet repository for Bridge Officers? Let alone the upcoming duty officers that we might have in overflow?

A: We have long term plans to allow Player Run Starbases to be “staffed” by extra officers you have. We are also looking into increasing storage so that you can have more potential candidates in the wings.

21. MinosOne - Q: I understand that one of the goals of Season 4 is to allow players to start from level one as a Klingon player. What additions to Klingon game-play can be expected once this occurs (such as additional Klingon missions, playable races, costumes, etc.)?

A: We will be looking at all the missions available to the KDF and looking for gaps that need episodes to help players have a smooth level progression. This may even include re-leveling some existing content to make leveling up smoother. As far as new races, we really want to focus on ensuring the existing ones we have are fully fleshed out and have a lot of good customization options first. That is one of the reasons we have been working updating the Gorn and making some basic costume changes across the board. Some of these changes will allow us to add in customization options that have been missing.

22. Ambrosia1692 - Q: What I’d like to see is a better layout for the accolades. Right now it is kind of hard find what one I just did but if you had tabs off to the left when you just click on it to see those it would make it much easier to find and to read.

A: While not exactly a question, I can say that I agree and I’m hopeful that if the UI team finishes everything on their plate for Season 4, this can sneak its way in.

23. Kingdox - Q: Now that episodes are starting to have class specific options, what are the odds future episodes will have Gender or Species specific options? And is there any chance for some type of romance based episodes in the future for our captains or bridge officers?

A: Adding in the class specific challenges already feels a little contrived in some instances and it may get even more out of hand if we start to add in Gender and Species. What I’d prefer to see is specific minigames or some other class specific ability that is more frequently used and standardized. As far as romance with your bridge officers, we are leaving that one for the Foundry. I’m sure there will be plenty of player created love stories.

24. filbones - Q: What is the plan for Andoria? .

A: One of the reasons we’ve been working on melee weapons is so that we can finally go back and add the Ushaan-tor and offer the PVP arena we promised on Andoria.

25. Blasten_Blaster - Q: When can we expect to see a flyable peregrine fighter?

A: The Peregrine fighter is one of the small playable ships you’ll be able to craft very soon. Klingons will also be getting their own new fighter.

26. Kpt.Krell - Q: You said that there should be an explore-able Sol system. How would that work? Can you go to the moon and Mars colony? Can you visit Jupiter Station? Also, when can we expect feature episodes to be translated into French or German?

A: We have created a system map for each planet in the Sol system, and where appropriate we have also added stations and other sites that are expected to be there such as Utopia Planetia at Mars and Jupiter Station at Jupiter. You will have a navigation option that will ask you which planet you want to visit and it will transfer you there.
As far as translation issues, the publishing team assures me that they are hoping to get back on track very soon and while it is already March and many of you are just as frustrated as I am, I’m hopeful that you’ll see episodes in your native languages well before Season 4 launches.

27. Simale - Q: (Paraphrasing) Will we ever have the ability to assign Fleet Ranks with uniform Rank Pins from Cadet to Fleet Admiral (from various eras) so that they match the rank the player has within the Fleet?

A: In addition to what you are asking for, we are also looking into this tech so that we can add various other badges to uniforms as well. These tech investigations don’t come with ETAs but I can say that I’d like to see it in game at some point and we are collaborating with the software team to make it happen.

28. John_pain - Q: When will we see the Featured Episodes (limited-time) bonuses return i.e. the Breen officer and the Ophidian cane?

A: We are working out the details now to have these rewards once again available for a limited time during Feature Episode reruns sometime in April or May.

29. Tgai_Spock - Q: Can we get back the DS9 Fleet Action for VA ranks please?

A: We plan on revisiting DS9 in an upcoming Feature Episode series and this is something we are discussing as potentially part of that series.

30. Sodoma - Q: Could we have separate difficulty settings for ground and space combat?

A: Part of our Ground Combat update in Season 4 is looking at the overall difficulty of encounters on the ground maps. We would like to get player feedback on our changes before we add a separate difficulty slider. If after Season 4, it still feels too rough, then we can consider it.

31. Scoth_Davion - Q: Do you plan to add a "neutral" faction for player that want to play mercenaries, merchants, independent explorers, pirates?

A: Well it would be unlikely that we would add a Faction that is entirely based on neutral game-play. We have discussed possible new classes that could be more independent and focused on their own agenda, however in the context of Star Trek; it is not likely to happen anytime soon. One possible faction (way down the road) that would fit this concept would be the Ferengi.

32. Diztak - Q: Will we be able to walk in the shuttles? And decorate it to?

A: We have considered it; however there is not much room to maneuver in those little things and with the number of shuttles/fighters we’re planning to add it would require a lot of resources to make each interior look correct. Once thing we have investigated is allowing you a first person perspective while flying a shuttle so that you would have a “window” overlay to give you a grander sense of scale up next to some big ships. In short, don’t expect this in the near-term.

33. Marvossk - Q: Will the Hirogen be playable with the Romulan faction?

A: Once we finally add the Romulan faction, the plan is that the Hirogen will remain allied to the Romulan Star Empire as they are now and that you’ll be able to create a Hirogen character.

34. TRhade - Q: Is there a chance to see something like V'ger from The Motion Picture?

A: Someday, oh yes. There is a reason my forum avatar is V’ger.

Talk about it in the forums!

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