In case you’ve been away from the internet for a few days, Star Trek Online went into open beta. A lot of good information has already been posted, so I’m not going to repeat it here. Instead I just wanted to give my impressions from the closed beta and my expectations for open beta, and my plans for launch and the live game.
Like Werit and Pete, I’m a fan of Star Trek. I’ve seen all of the shows (although I’m young enough to have watched TOS in reruns only) and the movies. My favorite two series are TNG and Enterprise (except for that crappy opening theme music they did). My favorite captain is Picard, my favorite character is Data, and I never hated Wesley Crusher. I’ve played (I think) all of the Trek computer games, but I most enjoyed Star Trek: Armada.
Closed Beta Experience
I got my CB invite on November 24th, and have been able to play in most of the testing sessions the Cryptic has held between then and now. I played a Tactical Officer up to Lieutenant 6 (level 6 basically) twice and did a variety of patrols, episodes, and open missions. The space combat has been exactly what I wanted from day one. The ground combat was just ok, I didn’t hate but I didn’t love it.
Again if you want more details there are already quite a few good posts linked above.
Open Beta Expectations
Open beta started on January 12th, and two days in the game is under some epic level stress testing. For a game so many people claimed not to care about, there are a lot of players logging in. This makes for an excellent test for the February launch day flood, but I’m sure is frustrating for people getting their very first impression of the game. I hope and expect that the lag issues will clear up during the first week, both from players who were more interested in sight-seeing leaving and from Cryptic improving the code and server infrastructure.
I never saw any of the open beta day 1 issues of loading into a planet instance as your ship, or into space as your captain, or beaming to a surface without your away team, in closed beta even when a new influx of players was causing lag and disconnects. My assumption is that these issues are caused by a massive influx of open beta players. This seems to be correct, since on the second day of open beta most of these issues weird loading seem to have gone away. Now I’m just seeing disconnects, some slow loading screens, and some rubber banding.
Plans for Live
I am happy with what I’ve experienced so far in closed and open beta. There are still bugs and rough edges to the game, but it feels no less complete or buggy to me that Fallen Earth was when it released a few months ago. Based on my closed beta experience, I’ve pre-ordered the Digital Deluxe edition from Direct2Drive. I’m planning to spend at least six months on the game, maybe more depending on what kinds of subscription deals Cryptic offers. The only thing I haven’t decided is if I’m keeping my EVE subscription during that time.
If you’re in the open beta feel free to send me a tell or a friend invite, Captain Kae@bluekae.
Leave me a comment if you have any questions about the game or are curious about how it compares to another MMO.