There was a new Ask Cryptic posted yesterday. One of the things I really like about the STO team is their communication. Daniel Stahl, the leader producer, has made every effort to be up front and transparent with STO’s development. This means they share current development plans and you can get a good idea of what is being worked on in the game. The downside, is they talk about a lot of stuff that never happens or is continually pushed back. But at least they are upfront about it, unlike the infamous capital ships from SWG that never happened.
There are a lot of cool things on the horizon for STO, unfortunately most of them are very far on the horizon. The Duty Officer system has been talked about for months and was supposed to be a major feature of season 4 (which has been out for over a month) but will likely not come until late Oct. They have talked about improving ship interiors and adding players starbases from the beginning. The best odds for that are Season 5, which probably means next year. This is where having the lifetime sub comes in handy.
In the Ask Cryptic there were a lot of interesting things of note.
Q: ScottishTimelord Are we ever going to see the level cap increased anytime soon. How about letting us reach the rank of Fleet Admiral and have our own fleet to command (all the other class ships that we own). It would make for some epic battles!
A: The level cap increase to Fleet Admiral will not happen until we feel there is enough content ready to make it worthwhile. We have discussed allowing you to command several other ships similar to having an away team in space. Details on that are all TBD.
This would be an interesting feature. It would clearly be something that should on an expansion level release though. I don’t expect to see anything like this for 1yr+.
Q: Captain_Samson Are there any plans to release more canon ship interiors (Galaxy, Defiant, Intrepid, Sovereign ext.)?
A: Yes. There is a new replica interior being released with the DS9 Feature Episode Series.
Q: alexisnomad Are there plans for dual torpedo launchers, like the ones the Defiant has in DS9?
A: While I don’t know if the dual torps are coming yet, I can say that the Defiant is getting a major IP overhaul for the next feature episode series and that includes the proper rapid fire cannons you remember from the show.
This makes me excited for the next featured episode series (not due until late Oct). Those are always good, plus this hopefully means a Defiant interior and a DS9 interior upgrade. Both of which really suck as they are. The addition of proper looking phaser cannons will be cool (especially if they add the proper sounds).
Q: metaQ What about animated antennae for Andorians?
A: On the schedule for later on in Season 4.
Small detail, but would be cool. Enterprise made the Andorians cool with their constantly moving antennae.
Q: Keppoch Now that the KDF has access to all sector blocks except the Sirius Sector Block, will the KDF be getting a transwarp ship like the Fed’s Excelsior? A tier 5 K’tinga might be a good fit for such a power.
A: We’ve discussed this as a power for one of the upcoming KDF ships. We’ve also discussed updating the transwarp power on the Excelsior and in the event we remove all of the sector walls (a definite possibility). If we remove the sector walls then transwarp will need to have a different function and we will consider the KDF when we evaluate updates to this power.
Q: Timelord_Victorious What was the reason for making the Rhode Island that is clearly more powerful than any other ship at that level? Isn’t this making the old Nova obsolete for people who are willing to pay to be more powerful and turning everyone else into second class captains? This sounds harsh, but I honestly want to know the reason for it. Maybe there is something you have not told us yet, an important piece of the puzzle?
A: The plans are to add ship variants that have cool and versatile powers at all tiers. “More powerful” is debatable and if the forums are any indication there is not a consensus. We want to add new ships with new abilities across the board and simply making “skins” of ships that only look different, but don’t act different is not a goal. We want new ships to feel like new ships with new abilities. There were similar outcries about the Galaxy Dreadnaught when it first came out, but now that there are plenty more ships, the concerns over that ship are not what they used to be.
That said, we are still evaluating the Rhode Island and have delayed the release for at least a week to discuss the ship and ensure it is balanced for what it is intended to be. Also keep in mind that we intend for all ships to be earnable in game via emblems, so arguments that this is only for people who “pay for it” are unfounded.
If they can get rid of the sector walls and make it one big galaxy, that will go a long way to improving the general feel of the game. The graphical change they made a few months back was great but the zones are still small. It doesn’t feel like a living universe.
It would be great if they took the “special” abilities of all of the unique ships and made them into consoles like they are doing with the new ships. Then you could mix and match. The Defiant-R cloak, the Excelsiors transwarp ability, etc. Granted, some ships abilities need to be inherent to them (Galaxy-X spinal phaser lance, Intrepid’s ablative armor (due to the graphics)).
So there are a lot of cool things on the horizon for STO. Unfortunately, nothing I want to do in the game right now.