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MMORPG Thoughts and Other things that I can't get out of My Head

As a disciple of the MMORPG system, I offer my humble thoughts in this blog.

Author: fansede

STO New ideas (Continued)

Posted by fansede Thursday August 7 2008 at 11:03AM
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I thought I was reading about STO not having any real progression system of sorts. While this is not a "new" idea per se, Here is how I would argue for the idea of a progression system in STO.

Star Trek has a Rank system for chain of command. Here is a site how the chain of command is listed in the Star Trek world. 

Ok these ranks are hallmark points of advancement in a players career.  How do you measure ones progression through these ranks? My suggestion would have a few twists.

First would be a players special interest - these are skills sets which could be used like any other sci fi MMO. It also helps a player customize his/her avatar. Think of the Star Trek shows. Captain Piccard loved archeology, ( Maybe as a game mechanic players who take the skill archeology receive benefits from exploration, more special unlocks from ancient cultures and perhaps able to receive unique missions that challenge an archeologist. What caused this civilization to die? Why is my ship debuffed when I visited here and my engineer has no clue?). Maybe you want to be Captain Waorf type and focus on fighting tactics. You might get bonuses for melee / weapon combat important for away missions and/ or if your ship has been boarded by the enemy... 

So I would set an experience bar for these skills and level them up to unlock new skills for the player. Adding benefits to performace and perhaps unlocking new game experiences such as quests, items, and / or enhancing ship performance.

Set that aside now, lets focus on moving our avatar from a mere Cadet to a Starfleet Captain. What would be a measuring unit of progression. I say give them Achievements and Commendations. When a player performs activities to complete a goal, it is an Achievement. Perform X amount of Achievements and you are up for a Commendation from your Captain.  Earn enough Commendations and you are eligible for a Promotion of Rank. So to lay things out:

Johnny is an Ensign on a Ship.  The game requires Johnny to perform 50 Achievements to qualify for a Commendation.  Five Commandations qualify him for a Promotion. Finish an epic type of Promotion mission and DING!  You have been promoted to Lieutennant.

What could be an interesting twist on the advancement system is that Players reward other Players. That means as a Captain you can award your officers of your group Achievement Experience towards a Commendation. Obviously safegards have to be in place to prevent abuse. Things like AFK timers, Limiting the total amount of experience given, keeping the rewards private for Captain eyes only, etc.

Here is an example:

Suppose a mission for the Captain and his team of officer players are assigned a mission. The Mission Pool has 1,000 experience points assigned to it upon completion. The Captain decides at the end who gets what Up to a maximum of 250 exp per person (say it is a 4 man team). The game also has a minimum of 50 exp as a minimum so the Captain can't deny anyone exp at all.  So, this system promotes roleplaying and gives a sense of respect to the Captain. When the experience numbers are dealt to the players, the system message may read .. You gain 250 experience! or You gain 100 experience! or You gain 50 experience!

This would not affect a players specialized skills.

Captains still get experience as well, to become an Admiral. The Captain cannot assign his own experience, but in case of a raid situation where the Captain is part of an Armada, the Admiral can assign Captains experience. In regular missions, experience goes to the Captain upon completion of the mission. Mission restarts diminish the Captain rewards.