style="width: 630px; height: 60px;" alt="Exclusives"
style="text-decoration: underline;">Galactic Map
the process of warping between local systems in Star Trek Online has
been made relatively easy, sometimes traversing the vastness of space
can still be a difficult endeavor. To help get you pointed in the right
direction, Ten Ton Hammer is pleased to bring you detailed maps for
each sector in Federation space and beyond.
This week, we've added Cardassian maps into the mix with the Alpha
Trianguli, Beta Ursae, and Zeta Andromedae sector blocks.
Trek Online: Guide to Gear Bonuses
up loot is great, trying to figure out what all of
the Star Trek Online shorthand means isn’t. One of the first
notice in the game is the bracketed gear bonuses that trail behind the
armor, weapons and kits. Today
we provide some decryption for those gear codes
and discuss the best bonuses for different careers in the Star
Trek Online: Guide to Gear Bonuses.
Officer Abilities: Engineer
of trying to figure out what it takes to boost the effect of your
Science Officer's Gravity Well ability? You're not the only one. Join
Ten Ton Hammer as we pull back the veil of mystery on this elusive
knowledge of Science Bridge Officer abilities this week.
style="width: 630px; height: 60px;" alt="Captain's Log"
Week That Was
hangover from GDC is in full swing, so this week has been fairly quiet.
continue to roll in and this week Jack Emmert (Chief Operating Officer
of Cryptic Studios) gave a lengthy and quite open discussion with the
guys at href="http://thebigfreaks.com/?p=263">Big Freaking
Podcast. While we wait for
Season One to launch (this week? see below) we're going to dive into
some of the remarks that Jack made during the hour long interview. It's
a good listen, so make sure you check it out. style="margin-left: 0.5in;">
style="margin-left: 40px; font-style: italic;">We
will be bringing down Star Trek Online on Thursday 25, March from 3am
to 6am PST (11am to 2pm GMT), in order to perform maintenance, and
apply a new patch. We will update this thread once this maintenance has
Thank you, The Star Trek Online Team
like Season One could be heading our way. This is our first opportunity
to see how well the launcher works for a major content patch, and how
well Cryptic can patch the servers, etc. Can it all happen in 3 hours?
If it does I'll be pleasantly surprised and would recommend Blizzard
take a few notes.
Jack Being Frank
I mentioned earlier, Jack Emmert offers a refreshing discussion about
the past, present and future of his studio (Cryptic) and the market
overall. I don't know if I've heard a developer offer up as much
information and be as candid as Jack is during this interview that
lasts almost an hour. It might be an extension of the href="http://www.tentonhammer.com/node/82269">new
communication credo, or it may
just be Jack being very frank. Whatever it is, I hope he starts sharing
with other people.
The Company We Keep
a brief discussion about what I'll call the "Rat Pack" of game
developers (I'm making this up as I go) Jack compares his four game
launches with the two of Richard Garriott and Brad McQuaid and Raph
Koster by discussing how few people have actually launched multiple
games. While being an interesting point, please don't put yourself in
that group. Among the other three people I'd say they each launched one
game and then got paid to launch a second but didn't deliver. All three
had great ideas but got lost in their coolaid. Yet I digress.
offers up an excellent exchange about death penalties. His take (which
jives with mine) is that death penalties don't add fun to the game.
Again reaching back into his archives, Jack discusses why death
penalties were originally included in games - it was to make the games
last longer and get players to play them longer. With the amount of
content in games, we don't need a death penalty. However, if that is
the only way you'll feel like a tough guy, Jack says they are open to
including it if that is what the players want.
Developers are people too.style="margin-left: 0.5in;">It's easy to sit in this
virtual ivory tower and bag on games, or completely knock features of
games. It can't be easy to be on the other side of the screen seeing
what people write about the game you've spent years creating and poured
your heart and soul into though. Jack says that it literally kills them
when they read some of the reviews and I bet he is right. That sucks.
On the other hand, they get paid to make games and I don't so I
automatically have the right to beat them up virtually. style="margin-left: 0.5in;">
the interview we do learn a few interesting items. The first is that
STO has "well over 100,000 subscribers." Who knows if that
means the first month or resubs after the initial month, or whatever. I
hope it's enough to keep Cryptic and Atari interested in it, that's all I
The second thing we learn is that Cryptic is not working on any console
games. No big shock here, but it sounds like many of the staunch MMOG
development teams are sticking with PC only (SOE not included).
If Jack got his hands on any license he could to make a game, he would
choose Godzilla. At first I completely poo-poo'd the idea, but it's
growing on me. I mean heck, most games have horrible lip syncing anyway.
Last but not least, "WoW has killed the MMO genre, and I don't mean
that in a bad way." According to Jack, WoW is the pinnacle in both cost
and reward which may preclude the smaller shops of Cryptic and Mythic
ramping up new games. I don't tend to agree with this, every time I've
seen monster companies dominate an arena, startups invariably show up
(Firefox, Southwest Airlines, just to name a few). In this case, Mythic
is now part of EA so they are now a big dog. I get what Jack is saying
though, the days of a true WoW-type triple-A contender coming from a
grassroots company is very slim.
And with that we draw to a close. Next week we will talk about the
actual game and how guilds are progressing. Is yours?
Have a great week, and
thanks for reading.
style="width: 630px; height: 60px;" alt="Weekly News"
Jack Emmert Discusses STO, CO, and Future Plans
border="1" cellpadding="10" cellspacing="2">
style="width: 610px; height: 55px;"
alt="Star Trek Drink of the Week"
will do. Sometimes it's not safe or wise to have a beer (like driving
to church for example). Romulan Ale offers the ability to think you're
having a beer, when in fact it's an energy drink. style="margin-left: 0.5in;">Romulan Ale, for those
times when you want a beer, but have time for an energy drink. Instead
of slurring and having to go to the bathroom, you'll be doing laps
around the house and having to go to the bathroom. Enjoy responsibly.
To read the latest guides, news, and features you can visit our Star Trek Online Game Page.