Star Trek Online Console Version First Impressions (XBox One)

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A long time ago in a Galaxy Far Far away (about two years ago and I’m not sorry for this), I played Star Trek Online for about 15 hours on my PC. While I really enjoyed the game, I was disappointed in just how bad the graphics were on my PC. I still haven’t gotten a new one, but when the prospect of playing Star Trek One on my console (Xbox One) appeared I immediately downloaded it and gave it a shot. (Click here for my original Star Trek Online review). Here’s my first impressions:

Graphics

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Oh boy, the graphics on this game are really dated, however this is also a very old game. They certainly look better than on my PC. Just keep in mind this is not a modern game at all. I believe that graphics improve the further you get into the game (as you get into the updated areas as the game went along in the years). Don’t quote me on that though. They did do some tweaks to the graphics with lighting and shading. I wouldn’t know the exact differences though, since it looked so bad on my PC.

The game still shines more in the space sections. Ships look really cool and space isn’t just some black void, there’s all kinds of cool space clouds and what not. Explosions and phasers look great too.

Star Trek Online suffers from a bit of a lag when it loads a new resource like a character’s portrait when they want to talk to you. Parts of their face will appear and then the rest loads. It’s a bit off putting, to say the least.

Controls

I was really nervous about the controls. As an MMO that has you adventuring on land and in space the controls for Star Trek Online were fairly complex in order to handle all the things available to players. Then having to dumb those controls down to a console?

The results were fairly good. While I’m still getting used to the controls, I’m finding that I can do what I want to do without too much of a hassle. However, I do find that pushing the A button to talk to a character doesn’t always work for some reason. I find myself jumping a lot instead of talking to an NPC.

Missions and Story

On the PC version of Star Trek Online I played as Starfleet and very briefly as a Klingon. I started the Xbox One version as Starfleet and it’s the same exact start as I got on PC, so I’ll be fairly bored until I get beyond the first few missions. It is nice to hear Nimoy’s narration again. Sigh. You’re missed, Mr. Nimoy.

And for new people, Star Trek Online is great in that you can keep going from story mission to story mission playing on your own basically without needing other people to play with you.

Other Players

I played the PC version of Star Trek Online well after it had been many years old, so when I went to a place where other people were gathered there’d be tons of high level dudes with crazy cool ships while I ran around in my basic uniform. It was funny to see that almost everyone was on the same level as I made my way around Earth’s starbase.

Despite this being an MMO, I rarely want to interact with other players directly. There’s a chat window and I don’t know how I’d chat with them effectively without a keyboard. I didn’t bother plugging in a headset, so I don’t know if there’s voice chat. Sorry, this is just first impressions after all!

Legacy and Connectivity

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My old crew.

If you had a PC character you have to start all over on the Xbox One or PS4. Sorry. And you don’t get credit for any purchases you made, so if you want your cool uniforms or ships you have to rebuy them. I didn’t spend a ton of money on the PC version, so it’s not that tough for me to make the switch. Still, I wish I had some sort of credit available.

Another downside is that the PC version is not connected to the consoles. And the consoles aren’t connected to each other. That means you’re only playing with people that own the system that you’re playing on. This makes me nervous. If I spend a lot of time playing on the XBox One what happens when people get tired of the game and stop playing? Or if a new Xbox is released? The PC has remained stable simply because people can keep playing the game as long as it’s compatible with Windows.

Should You Try It?

If you’re a Star Trek fan, by all means try the game. Just remember that the first part of the game is really not all that fun. You’re not stuck hunting rats until you level, but you have some crappy running around talking to people before you get into your ship. And even when you get your first ship, it’s not all that great. The game really hits its stride when your bridge crew is more established and you get to send crew members away on missions. Slog it out for a couple of hours and you’ll eventually start to get really sucked in.