MMORPG: The Delta Recruitment event is designed largely around the idea of bringing new players up to speed during their adventures in STO. Can you give us some details about how you're bridging the gap, how players will benefit, and the potential impact on the war, and the game?
Al Rivera: One of the things that brings new players into an existing MMO is the appeal of everyone starting at the same level and experiencing the same content. This really brings the community together and makes something as huge as an MMO much more accessible to new players. This is the perfect time to join Star Trek Online and start a fresh character. During the event, players will get a different starting experience and backstory. Along the way, we have added new things in existing missions that only Delta Recruits can experience. The story is a prequel to the upcoming Season 10 and Iconian war. Delta Recruits will earn lots of rewards that will give them a leg up and allow them to progress quickly through the game.
If you haven’t played in a while, it’s the perfect time to come back and experience all the massive changes and additions we have made to the game. If you are an existing player, there are account rewards you will want for all your characters. This is a great time to try another faction if you haven’t tried them all. You will also want to play with other Delta Recruit to gain their team and fleet bonuses and help with server-wide unlocks. The Delta Recruitment event offers lots of incentives for the new player, for existing players, and for the entire game server including personal, account-wide, and server-wide rewards. Everyone will want to make a new Delta Recruit, and everyone will want to play with them and help them.
MMORPG: What can existing and current players expect when the new event is running? Will they also benefit from creating new recruits?
AR: In addition to personal rewards, Delta Recruits will also earn account rewards. That is, all your existing characters will be able to claim lots of rewards that your Delta Recruit unlocks. Delta Recruits will have a special UI showing them what objectives they need to complete in order to unlock these account based rewards.
Delta Recruits will have special traits and rewards that will encourage existing players to want to interact with them. For instance, during the event, Delta Recruits will earn bonus Dilithium for defeating opponents. This bonus also applies to anyone in their team, even if they are not a Delta Recruit. Delta Recruits also earn a large sum of special Dilithium that can only be spent in fleets. This makes them very valuable to fleet recruiters – everyone will want as many Delta Recruits in their fleet as possible.
Finally, there will be game-wide objectives. All Delta Recruits will have weekly objectives. Completing them will unlock an event for all players (not just Delta Recruits) such as a bonus XP week. The magnitude of the unlocked event (for instance, the size of the XP bonus) is based on how well the Delta Recruits did the week before. There will be a new UI showing progress towards unlocking the event.
MMORPG: The Iconians are highly advanced and still retain a degree of mystery. Will players learn anything new about them as they join the conflict?
AR: The Delta Recruitment event will give new players access to some clues about the Iconians. We have sprinkled clues throughout the existing content in the game that only a Delta Recruit can access. Your backstory is unique, and you are being recruited specifically to confront the coming threat of the Iconians.
MMORPG: The Iconians have been developed as having a hand in multiple significant events over time. In STO, how do you work to keep them a balanced, yet credible threat? (And keeping factions with a history of hostility cooperating?)
AR: The Iconians are timeless. 200,000 years ago they went into hiding. They have had a lot of time to plan what they wanted to do next. They have been manipulating events for centuries, and have “recruited” many allies along the way. One of the key themes with the Iconians is unity. They were defeated 200,000 years ago when all the races rose up against them. So the Iconians have been working behind the scenes trying to undo alliances and keep the galaxy unstable. In Delta Rising, the player has to unite all the races of the Delta Quadrant in order to stop the Vaadwaur. I think you will see this theme repeated. This is not a conflict the Federation can win alone. They are not even something they can stop with conventional means – a lesson that will be hard-learned through the course of the story. So players are going to have to expand their mind in order to win this conflict.