Doing daily runs to grind out dilithium just doesn't cut it for me.
Are there any of those that a relative newbie can do, or are they all for high-end players?
Kasey Chang wrote:I'm a free player who played about 4 hours, and gave up.
You can't buy anything worthwhile in the starbase UNLESS you cough up $$$ to buy the important crystals. You're not give hints on where to go and what to fight. I basically wandered through the starbase for an hour and decided it's not worth my time.
But, for the price, it was worth it. If the game kicked you in the shins, it was worth it. It is
free to play.
I haven't run out of things to do by just following the missions I'm given. So far I've done a lot of "Training" missions that lead me around to different people who do different things. I've rescued a ship from raiders and done a Vulcan diplomatic mission that involved visiting a sacred planet with an ambassador. My queue still has me lined up for another three missions, including an apparent trade run.
The game is a little sparse (okay, very) on how to get around and find what you want, but I've learned a few things.
- Try clicking everything on the HUD to see what it does.
- Inside the starbase, look over the hallways and doors for direction indicators for different areas.
- Set a mission as active to have the destination highlighted on your map.
- You can open the Starfleet insignia to talk to people who gave you missions.
- There's an icon you can click on next to space missions which will bring you to them on autopilot.
- When you're in space, you can open the map and choose a system to go to, or fly there manually.
- SCAN everything. There's an icon to scan the map, and your ship will draw a line to the nearest anomaly.
Last night I remade my character and am happier with it in general. In two and a half hours I was able to restart from scratch and get further than I was the previous night. Fights went quicker, I skipped conversations I had already read, and I knew my way around.
What I've come to realize is that there's a LONG level grind to go through to get anywhere. Missions seem to be the only worthwhile thing to do, and I'm doing them. Oddly, not a single one has "paid" me for completing them. The only energy credit I have has come from selling ship components I've found instead of using them. I decided to weigh a completely empty bank account against selling an upgraded shield and opted to sell the shield so I'd have *something* sitting in the bank. I get that money is useless in the future, but it's a big part of what drives gamers in the here and now.
I'm "Level 1.3" and won't get my next ship until I get to "Level 2.0" ... that's a long time to stick in a newbie rig. I understand there aren't hundreds of ships to work with so I can't be given a new one every couple of steps, but most games give you a sense of progression pretty early on. At best I'm finding bits and bobs to make my ship a little better, but the ship itself remains the same.
The Engineer is proving to be fun. Ship combat isn't much different, but on the ground I can speed things up with a "Deploy Mines" ability I have... I basically see a group of enemies and kamikaze run at them, deploy mines right on top of them, run back, and watch them all die. Repeat every 20 seconds. Makes for pretty fast combat. I'm lacking the ability to heal people, though. In the first couple missions, I had to scan injured crew members of a ship I was rescuing, and the game basically said "You're not a Science officer. Leave these people to die." ... it kind of upset me a little that I couldn't even direct one of my lackies to drag the wounded guy back to the transporter.
I also found more interesting items somehow than I did last time I went through some areas. I picked up a set of dual phasers that are a hoot to run around shooting. I also found a dual cannon and mounted it on my ship, which has proven to be very valuable as long as I'm willing to face my enemies directly; this meant learning how to refocus shields to the front.
Knowing now to knock out shielding and focus on an area of the enemy has made a big difference in how fast fights end, but I have to admit I take more of a beating since I have to keep myself right in line with them to do it. I'm struggling a bit to learn how to manuever while adjusting speed and keep an eye on my HUD while also using abilities as needed. Flying circles like an idiot took longer, but I left every fight almost unscathed.
I also ran into a random encounter, but couldn't access it. A huge Borg cube arrived in the space area, and it was almost on top of me. When I clicked on it, I saw (in what I assumed was the "Level" area) a "-3", meaning to me that I should be able to take it if it's 3 levels below me. I flew over and ran right into it, to no effect. I started flying around, bumping it randomly while it flew erratically. Every now and then a message popped up that said something like "Engage this enemy" and I'd try to click it, but it vanished every time I tried. Once my Tactical officer popped up after I clicked, but I was in a clicking frenzy and dismissed her trying to confirm that I wanted to start the fight before I even got to fully process what she was asking. Eventually a group of 5 or 6 people were all flying around this thing, bumping it, humping it, and rubbing themselves against it - and finally it warped out.
2020 has been the longest century in recent history, and we're still not done with it.