Want to read Slashdot from your mobile device? Point it at m.slashdot.org and keep reading!


Forgot your password?
Role Playing (Games)

New Star Trek MMOG Announced 302

jabagi writes "Perpetual Entertainment and Viacom decided to produce a Star Trek MMOG. Not many details yet, but beta will be available in 2006, and the game will be launched in 2007. Here is the discussion on gamespy."
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

New Star Trek MMOG Announced

Comments Filter:
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 07, 2004 @08:19AM (#10175850)
    You are on the bridge of the Enterprise. You can go North, South and DENNIS.
  • by sgant ( 178166 ) on Tuesday September 07, 2004 @08:19AM (#10175851) Homepage Journal
    This is almost a given.

    Also another given would be an all Star Trek cable channel.

    Not that I'm a huge fan, but I'm just pointing out "givens" where Paramount could squeeze yet another dollar out of the Trek world.
  • 2007? (Score:5, Funny)

    by tuxter ( 809927 ) on Tuesday September 07, 2004 @08:19AM (#10175853) Journal
    It's due in 2007... Does that mean it will be compatible with longhorn?
    • Re:2007? (Score:2, Funny)

      by bob_avernus ( 799481 )
      probably untill a service pack comes out.
    • Re:2007? (Score:2, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward
      Considering how often Star Trek ships are taken over by computer security problems, I think the game might be Longhorn...
  • hmmm (Score:3, Insightful)

    by MikeHunt69 ( 695265 ) on Tuesday September 07, 2004 @08:21AM (#10175862) Journal
    I'm sure it will be as 'good' as star wars galaxies... *sigh*
    • Re:hmmm (Score:2, Funny)

      There is one crucial difference between the two games. Whereas Star Wars Galaxies is purely a fictional creation, this proposed game is firmly grounded in solid facts.

      'Star Trek' is a manifestation of a greater anomaly that has been called 'Retrograde Information Leakage' Its intricacies are somewhat complex, and are based on several scientific disciplines that have yet to be discovered in your time. Therefore, I will neither expound the cause of this anomaly, nor its details. A simple explanation of the s

  • Aagh. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by NoMoreNicksLeft ( 516230 ) <john...oyler@@@comcast...net> on Tuesday September 07, 2004 @08:21AM (#10175863) Journal
    Paramount hates Star Trek, and is obsessed with ruining the franchise. An MMORPG where everyone insists on being a captain or admiral, where no story can take place, and they can make up more "iso" words.

    Aren't they being sued for a Star Trek related game contract gone awry already?
    • Re:Aagh. (Score:3, Insightful)

      by briareus ( 195464 )
      There's a huge difference between "hates Star Trek" and "wants to suck as much profit out of the already worn-out Star Trek franchise".
    • AFAIK they were sued by Activision, although I haven't followed up on it recently (i.e. if the suit is still active)... I think it was concerning the dilution of the franchise by The Powers That Be... a bit rich considering the amount of crap Star Trek games that Activision themselves put out.

    • by Malfourmed ( 633699 ) on Tuesday September 07, 2004 @09:27AM (#10176231) Homepage
      It's clear from the press release and FAQ that it's not going to happen, but I always thought that Star Trek, with its multi-century future history, was perfectly placed to create a MMORPG gaming experience like no other.

      Imagine a game where everyone started out as characters in the ENT (or even ST:FC) era. Imagine them having adventures that took them into the 23rd, then 24th centuries (changing characters as necessary ... yes, aging could play a part in this game unlike most MMORPGs, or by playing long-lived races like Vulcans).

      Imagine players having the opportunity to shape history by partaking in or deciding the outcomes of, key events like the Federation/Klingon wars, Wolf 359, first contact with Cardassians, discovery of the transporter or deflector etc.

      Imagine playing the character responsible for introducing TOS-style uniforms into the game, or the character who discovered transwarp, or the character who introduced the Akira-class ship into the fleet, or the character who was responsible for holding AR-558 before Sisko's arrival or ... the possibilities are virtually endless.

      Eventually, sure, the future history would outstrip the "documented" canon but that wouldn't happen for a few years and the servers could either be re-set or the history extended. (Server launches could be staggered so that there would be a choice of eras for people to play in, for those who were determined to stick to one timeline.)

      But given that MMORPG game design is based on the principle of maintaining the status quo while only giving the illusion of advancement and change, this isn't going to happen.
      • Yes, the potential is great. If I hinted that it was otherwise, then that was a mistake. Certainly, it's greater than someone else creating a space saga from scratch, because everyone can identify with this immediately. But think of the potential of the TNG movies, before the first one came out, and how that was just ruined. It couldn't have been worse if Berman had just aimed his ass at the screen, and painted it with explosive diarrhea.

        Playing a Harry Muddesque character does seem appealing, btw.
      • > Imagine... [ lots of cool stuff ]
        >But given that MMORPG game design is based on the principle of maintaining the status quo while only giving the illusion of advancement and change, this isn't going to happen.

        Yep. Imagine - 30+ years of storylines and characters. Imagine - hordes of slavering geeks aching to live the world of their dreams.

        Imagine... imagine shooting the same asteroid for four hours a day, seven days a week, $15 a month, to become a Master Asteroid Miner (the first level

      • This could be great for the francise, in that it would give Berman and the rest of his crew new ideas on how to further milk the geeks of their money. Clearly with the advent of ST: Enterprise, everyone has seen Bermens inability to come up with a single unique idea come full circle. Perhaps he should just give in, great of MMORPG, and let the geeks develop a new story, rip that story off from the MMORPG and BAM, a, yet-another Star Trek series.

        Personally I would actually like to be apart of a MMORPG tha
  • Announced? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by erroneous ( 158367 ) on Tuesday September 07, 2004 @08:22AM (#10175874) Homepage
    In the area if MMORPG development, where so many projects seem to get canned after months or even years of development, I really don't think "announced" is newsworthy any more.

    How about not publishing MMORPG stories until they're "finished" - at least finished enough to alpha test.

    As a side benefit, we'll not have to read any of the "cancelled" stories the following year...
    • Re:Announced? (Score:2, Informative)

      by Gondola ( 189182 )
      Unfortunately, even waiting until they were in Alpha wouldn't prevent the proliferation of MMO game cancellation notices. Horizons, Dragon Empires, Uru (the multiplayer Myst game), and quite a few others have all been very late in development before they were canned.
  • The FAQ... (Score:5, Informative)

    by zoeblade ( 600058 ) on Tuesday September 07, 2004 @08:23AM (#10175876) Homepage

    ...is at startrek.com [startrek.com].

  • by borgalicious ( 750617 ) on Tuesday September 07, 2004 @08:24AM (#10175881)
    All I know is that when it does come out, I wanna be one of the nameless landing party guys in the red shirts.
  • Oh God (Score:2, Interesting)

    by bblazer ( 757395 ) *
    Here's hoping that this game will be better than the las couple of movies.
  • FAQ ! (Score:4, Informative)

    by phreakv6 ( 760152 ) <{moc.liamg} {ta} {6vkaerhp}> on Tuesday September 07, 2004 @08:25AM (#10175889) Homepage
    FAQ [cjb.net] on the game
  • by tod_miller ( 792541 ) on Tuesday September 07, 2004 @08:27AM (#10175903) Journal
    BigBoI: "hAhAhHhAaaa"
    DM0nz: "u r sposd 2b a vulcan u cnt laff"
    BigBoI: "/me does vlcn nekk pnch"

    Se7en_ov_n9ne: "hi I am female"
    chaptin_pick_hard: "zomgzzcripes can I boldly go where no man, err, boy, errr, cripes my mum is calling me"

    Yey, can you send me a copy please? Oopps, my mum is calling me, she said no /. 'til after my dinner.
    • by NoMoreNicksLeft ( 516230 ) <john...oyler@@@comcast...net> on Tuesday September 07, 2004 @08:40AM (#10175967) Journal
      Just wanted to draw more attention to this post, before ijits moderate it into oblivion. Not only is this post 90% serious in my opinion, it's accurate. I could not think of a better example of what MMO gameplay devolves to.

      Someone figures out how to get rid of this crap, andit would revitalize MMO games.
      • Damnit and I had just spent my last mod point! Grandparent was funny and true, not a troll. *sigh*

        No MMOG will easily get rid of the idiots though, because if they pay, the company involved doesn't wan't to get rid of them. Maybe a MMOG with a /.esque karma system. Good roleplaying gets you good karma and players can filter out lesser players if they want.

        Suddenly all those players really do become rabble that you neither care about or even really hear. Of course it may get pretty lonely.
      • I want an MMORPG try age-enforced servers. You can't join server "Enterprise" until you're 21 years old, period. Your ID has to be verified with some kind of government document or something.

        I admin a MUD, and 99% of the problem people like this are in middle school. If you get rid of the middle school people, you could have a much nicer game.
        • I agree. The right business plan, and you wouldn't have to accept every single subscriber.

          I've never been able to work out the numbers though. Say I hired you fulltime, to do dungeonmaster duty on such a game. Just what sort of salary/wages should you earn, if you do the job well?

          Also, assuming you had some kickass tools (multiple monitor setup, and custom apps that let you keep track of many players at once), just what do you think is possible?
  • by enrico_suave ( 179651 ) on Tuesday September 07, 2004 @08:28AM (#10175905) Homepage
    this isn't helping get my older brother out of my parent's basement anytime sooner... =(

  • by kesteloot ( 600073 ) on Tuesday September 07, 2004 @08:28AM (#10175909)
    These are the requirements for a Game Systems Programmer posted on their website.
    # BS in Computer Science or equivalent.
    # Must have extensive experience working in a senior programming role on a commercial game development team.
    # Strong familiarity with PC development using C++.
    # Familiarity with Linux programming.
    # Experience developing networked game applications, preferably client-server.
    # Has developed and documented technical designs.
    # Has a love of gaming.
  • by Jugalator ( 259273 ) on Tuesday September 07, 2004 @08:29AM (#10175911) Journal
    "It seems like the game is about taking command of a starship in the 24th century."

    Hmm, to me this doesn't sounds like a game well suited for being a MMORPG. A Lord of the Rings MMORPG does, but not one where you command a (note: a) ship in a vast galaxy. Galaxies are mostly empty. How much socialization will be going on then? How immersive will the atmosphere be?

    Will it consist of OMGLOLBBQ we met a Bird of Prey, kill them! OK, done, let's move on, then OMGLOL we must go look at the Borg Cubes? Possibly -- which makes me wonder why this is a MMORPG. Maybe it's just me, but I have a hard time seeing how a game like this will make you go "WOW, what a vast cool world" if you'd be mostly just playing in a starship.

    When even Star Wars Galaxies (which I think had better potential since SW is traditionally also a lot about the planets -- actual worlds) ended up pretty bad, I don't see how this game will not end up as just a cash cow attempt backed up by a powerful well-known label with no special spirit and immersiveness about it.
    • Well, a starbase like DS9 would make a good premise for a MMORPG. Or a planet, but then you kind of lose the space aspect of it.
    • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 07, 2004 @08:52AM (#10176031)
      They can make every player a mercenary taking missions from either major races (humans, klingons...). Land on this rebel planet, kill boatload of rebels or borg, gain xp, loot, fame, women, whatever ...

      Crafting would allow the construction of weapons, ship gear, maybe even androids. Lot of possibilites.

      There could be trading between different civilizations, exploration missions given to the public (that will turn bad of course with baddies to kill). Ownership could be in the form of space ships. One could trade legally or illegaly. Plenty of choices.

      Not to mention, the countless spying agencies could be used as an excuse for PvP. Or archeological dig races or whatnot.

      They have lot of good material from wich a good MMOG could be made. Let's hope they avoid the pitfalls of SWG: the total lack of Star Wars feel. They already have the templates for the classes, no need to re-invent the wheel:

      Tank - Security guys (Worf).
      Ranger - User of phasers (Picard).
      Cleric - Medics (Crusher).
      Wizard/Mage - Betazoids or other telepaths (Troy).
      Some other class - The techie people (Laforge)

      They got a very rich universe.
      • <rant>

        For me, the problem with swg wasn't the lack of ambiance, rather, it was the lack of any meaningful content in a static world. All NPC missions boiled down to kill this, or escort that. The civil war mean't nothing. You could literally kill 10,000 rebels but it would make no difference. Everything felt generic. Worlds were huge with nothing in them. The profession based character system sucked cause you capped out after a short amount of time. So you mingled with different classes whic
    • Blockquoth the poster:

      just a cash cow attempt backed up by a powerful well-known label with no special spirit and immersiveness about it.

      Well, then, mission accomplished!
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 07, 2004 @08:30AM (#10175921)
    - Galaxy Class Federation Starship or better
    - Holodeck Mk 1
    - Social skills not required
  • Skill (Score:3, Funny)

    by Himring ( 646324 ) on Tuesday September 07, 2004 @08:44AM (#10175980) Homepage Journal
    [Thu Feb 10 01:08:09 2007] You have become better at never getting a date! (66)
  • by evslin ( 612024 ) on Tuesday September 07, 2004 @08:47AM (#10175995)
    1) This game doesn't make it out of beta
    2) This game does make it out of beta and gets slaughtered by EQ and DAOC.

    I like Star Trek and all, but the MMORPG market isn't exactly the easiest one to work in.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 07, 2004 @08:47AM (#10175998)
    The MMORPG market is pretty heavily populated at the moment, but a title like this will obviously be able to break in on the strength of its franchise, if the game is good enough. I'm not actually much of a Trek fan; I find the series fun for a couple of episodes and then incredibly repetative after that. However, here are a few of the concepts that I think would work with the license and which could convince me to buy the game and pay the monthly subs:

    1) Don't over-emphasise the combat on planet surfaces. Galaxies made this mistake big-time, to the extent that this was basically the only thing in the game on release. Traditional, Everquest-style MMORPG combat, be it PvE or PvP has been done to death by virtually every MMORPG around. I don't personally see anybody beating FFXI's system for this at any time in the immediate future; it's way ahead of the competition in terms of depth and polish. Better to play to the license's strengths and focus on other areas.

    2) From what I've seen, the Universe lends itself pretty well towards a sensible PvP arrangement. The Trek universe always struck me as quite rigidly controlled and policed, albeit with darker fringes. Just make it so that the "core worlds" are non-PvP (or PvP harshly punished by NPCs) and the outer fringes are less restricted. I hear EVE Online already has a vaguely similar system.

    3) I want to be able to buy, crew and run a ship with my friends. I'm not saying "I want to be Captain of the Enterprise", but rather that I want to be able to be a crew-member on an independently operating ship, with "real people" as my crew-mates. Maybe they could let people progress through skill-trees in... say... navigation, gunnery, sensor use etc and make it so that you need a balance of skills to run a ship. Obviously, as you make more cash, you should be able to get better ships, as well as bigger ships, which might require a larger crew. There should be the option for very high level players of being able to develop your character and your crew towards running either a battlecruiser or a supertanker. I don't want the game to be dominated by people running around in 1-player fighters or, worse still, 1 player battlecruisers. Boarding operations during ship-to-ship combat could be a fun alternative to planet-side combat.

    4) Please, for the love of god, take a fairly distant approach to the license. Put the usual planets and races in there, by all means. Tie it generally to a point in the time-line. But don't get into a situation where you're saying "we can't do this because it doesn't fit wit this stage of the timeline". Galaxies has suffered because of the inevitable tensions created by making the Jedi the most desired class during a time-span where there are only supposed to be a couple of Jedi.
    • but a title like this will obviously be able to break in on the strength of its franchise

      I dunno about you, but I'm pretty well sick of the "Star Trek" name right about now. Too much crap in recent years, too stagnant.

      This game will simply be a rehash of the worn out plots used on the series.

    • Granted you aren't very familiar with Star Trek, nor am I. But, your post reminded me of something that will pose a unique challenge to this game---

      Obviously, as you make more cash, you should be able to get better ships

      In ST:Next Generation, there are a few episodes where they talk about how human society has developed in tandem with technology to the point that resources are no longer a problem. As a result, there isn't a place for money or wealth as a motivation for human characters in the series. I
    • A few ideas... (Score:3, Interesting)

      by way2slo ( 151122 )
      Agreed. Star Trek was all about the ship. (point 1 & 3) A Star Trek MMO game should be all about YOUR ship. The real combat in the game should be ship vs. ship. The missions (see quests) should involve your ship. (eg. have to find more dilithium. have to deliver the smuggled supplies. Have to deliver the diplomats. have to carry out a set of Starfleet orders like explore, defend, patrol. etc.) In addition to increasing your character stats and abilities, you can upgrade your ship and its num
  • by Aggrazel ( 13616 ) <aggrazel@gmail.com> on Tuesday September 07, 2004 @08:50AM (#10176017) Journal
    Ensign 1: Captain, there's another ship approaching. They are hailing us.
    Captain: Main screen turn on.
    Ship: This is Captain Duder of the spaceship Leet, we're taking this camp site, bugger off.
    Captain: WTF? We've been here all day!
    Ship: Too bad dude, we want the loot from this easy romulan spawn, and we got 3 photon torpedo banks saying its ours, move to another sector, or we'll KS you biatches.
    Captain: WTF!! What about the prime directive!
    Ship: LOLz. You RPers crack me up.
    • Re:stab at this (Score:4, Interesting)

      by Caraig ( 186934 ) on Tuesday September 07, 2004 @11:08AM (#10177064)
      Actually this isn't funny at all. This is exactly what's going to happen.

      The best thing for an MMORPG that you care about is to find some mechannic that makes the game interesting, but makes it very very difficult to powergame and bowl over other players. It's bad enough in a system where you don't have PvP. It's even worse when someone can waltz up and shellack you for no reason whatsoever. You spend hours and hours learning the ropes, getting reasonably good at the game, dying embarrassingly to a number of mobs, all for what? To be killed by some leet-speak-babbling, profanity-spewing, whiny little PGer who probably hasn't graduated from junior high yet? How long are you really going to want to spend on a game where some 1337 d00d can and will PK you?

      World of Warcraft had a good thing with the enforced rest. It's just a shame that the people who only wanted to level up and be the uber-PKinators raised such a huge stink about it that Blizzard had to remove it form the Beta.

      A Trek MMORPG would need something good to allow it to compete with the slew of MMORPGs out there. Unfortunately the Trek franchise lends itself to reasonably good role-playing for the most part; at it's very best it can be rousing sci-fi action with moral and ethical questions thrown in. But, I don't think it'll do too well as a MMORPG where the goal of most of the players is to level up, become "uber", beat all the named monsters and get the rare drops, and rub other peoples' faces in it.
  • Starship Crew (Score:5, Interesting)

    by randalx ( 659791 ) on Tuesday September 07, 2004 @08:59AM (#10176077)
    One thing that stands out about this type of game would be the cooperative play needed to run a starship. This could be very interesting if most/all the crew were PCs as opposed to NPCs.

    Seems it would require much more cooperation than is normally required by the typical clan on other games.

    It would also be interesting aboard Klingon ships if one could advance in rank simply by beating one's superior officer. Hopefully they will allow this sort of flexibility.

    I think this one has potential.
    • Re:Starship Crew (Score:5, Insightful)

      by stratjakt ( 596332 ) on Tuesday September 07, 2004 @09:11AM (#10176143) Journal
      Won't happen.

      It'll be Star Wars Galaxies with "star wars" races replaced with "star trek" races.

      They could have done what you suggested with Galaxies. Join the empire as a low level stormtrooper, rise through the ranks - kind of like an America's Army type of thing. Or be a crew member on a smugglers ship. Or become a bounty hunter, and get assignments from Jabba himself.

      Nah, just another boring ass RPG game where you sit around levelling up all day. They forgot the MMO part, it seems.

      Star Trek is all about exploitation and milking the last few bucks out of a dried out franchise. MMOGs are "hot", so there's a Star Trek MMOG.

      Most Star Trek games have sucked ass, they've all been clones of popular titles with Star Trek characters. Descent Freespace, except you're in a Federation vessel, or Unreal with Klingons. I doubt this'll be different.
      • Nah, just another boring ass RPG game where you sit around levelling up all day. They forgot the MMO part, it seems.

        RPGs aren't supposed to be about leveling up either. The roleplaying has been left out of these kinds of games for a while now too, because everyone is more into the numbers. Luckily, there are enough people who want to be elite and have the best numbers in the game to support a new MMOG. For a while.

        I don't think the business side would support a MMOG with a limited time frame, i.e. 3 mo

    • capn commlinks, "We need warp drive now! Chief Engineer?"

      sk0tt1e commlinks, "wtf! bbl, sis is having a spaz"
      * sk0tt1e has disconnected

      capn yells, "Damn!"

  • You'll be dumped on the Planet Vulcan and spend your first month skinning small animals, surveying for minerals and dancing for other players on a continuous macro loop. The space expansion will follow a year and a half later.
  • Not Fair! (Score:5, Funny)

    by w3weasel ( 656289 ) on Tuesday September 07, 2004 @09:21AM (#10176201) Homepage
    This is not fair!!
    I just got a girlfriend!!!
  • I would buy a new star trek game. However, I won't be buying any MMOG since I don't have the time to play it to get any "community" game play sustainable.

    I think that these MMOG do more harm than good for gaming - they cause the acceptance of subscription based software (can't play off-line - Can't play unless you play). And they spell the death of many genres of games that really can't be made into MMOG.

    Me? I shut off Doom 3 for a bit and have playing X-Com for the past week - To tell you the truth - I'm
  • Boring? (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Kokuyo ( 549451 )
    The idea sounds quite good but the problem I have with MMORPGs is that they get boring fast. The last game I played was City of Heroes... didn't take one single month before I got bored. Before that it was Final Fantasy XI. Am I really the only one who can't stick to such games for very long? I always ask myself what exactely I had been expecting when playing gets frustrating. Is there any concept of a MMORPG at all which does not involve killing enemies to get stronger which you'd want to do in order be a
    • Re:Boring? (Score:2, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward
      Yeah, there is one which involves something other than killing more and more enemies in an endless loops. Plus, it's got a Linux client. It's called "A Tale in the Desert".

  • Q ! (Score:3, Funny)

    by Odonian ( 730378 ) on Tuesday September 07, 2004 @09:47AM (#10176377)
    I called it first! nyah nyah. see you in Borg-space, mortals!
  • by FauxPasIII ( 75900 ) on Tuesday September 07, 2004 @10:36AM (#10176684)
    You play as Worf. Son of MMOG.
  • by blueZhift ( 652272 ) on Tuesday September 07, 2004 @11:03AM (#10176965) Homepage Journal
    I'm a big Star Trek fan, but I just don't see how there is any room left in the MMORPG market for this game. After all of the disappointment of Star Wars Galaxies and the cancellations of numerous online games, I think the market is saturated. The only thing left is to cannibalize current MMORPG players.

    As far as business goes, if they plan ahead for a high level of member churn and keep the game fun for newcomers, then maybe there is a chance. But if they think that in today's market they'll get and keep say 500000 players, they're crazy! The people who would play this game are probably already playing an MMORPG. After EQ and SWG, I've settled on FFXI as my MMORPG home and have no plans to leave. I also have no plans to add another fee based game to the budget.

    Even as a fan, at least three things would have to happen for me to look at a Star Trek MMORPG.

    1. Fee must be very low, or some entirely new and palatable fee model. No fee would be great, but not likely.

    2. It'd better have content and be a generally kick a*s game. In other words, I won't be there on day one and will wait for player reviews. So they'd better have learned for the SWG fiasco.

    3. The system requirements must be reasonable. I won't spend $100 or more to upgrade my rig. I know my 1GHz PIII is pokey by todays standards, even with a fast video card and 512MB of RAM, but it runs most things just fine. No I wouldn't even think of Doom 3 on this box!

    Don't gag, but I'd be more likely to try this game if there were an XBox version, or PS2 with HD. So I hope they're at least least thinking about tapping the console market.
  • for great good or great evil... Depending on how they make it the game could be quite good, but the license can be a double edged sword. Look at Galaxies. Half the time what they do doesn't make sense from the fiction point of view (The whole Holocron grinding bit), and the other half the fiction "gets in the way" like Battledroids. Lots of ppl wanted them when I stopped playing, but last I heard it was a "sorry the fiction doesn't allow that, so your not getting what would make the game fun for you" lin
  • finally... (Score:3, Funny)

    by MORTAR_COMBAT! ( 589963 ) on Tuesday September 07, 2004 @11:38AM (#10177456)
    all those people who learned Klingon will have somethind to do.

    WorfSonOfMog: Hey guys, can I join your group?
    Ghertlak: Ark Moog, Nak Flag, Khi-Tohk!!!

    (roughly translated: we only speak Klingon you n00b)
  • by Rogerborg ( 306625 ) on Tuesday September 07, 2004 @11:44AM (#10177523) Homepage

    I used to work for a company that did CGI. We heard by word of mouth that Paramount were looking for tenders for the CGI for a licensed Star Trek game, including a short demo movie. But the catch was, there would be no contract, and nothing could be done in writing.

    When we eventually got someone on the phone (really, they wouldn't talk about this in email) and asked why, they reluctantly explained that it was because when Paramount's legal team gets a whiff of something like this going on, it becomes their job to kill it. They tend to refuse anything that gives even a suggestion that $NON_PARARMOUNT_EMPLOYEE is licensed to create Star Trek content. In practice, this makes anything but a full, final contract for the winning bidder simply impractical. The best that our contact could promise was that he would try and ensure that we weren't sued for putting in a tender.

    And so we did the demo movie (quite nice, actually), and delivered it, by hand, in a face to face meeting that never happened. We didn't win the bid, but it certainly opened our eyes.

    What's the relevance to this? It's that MMORPGs necessarily involve ordinary $NON_PARAMOUNT_EMPLOYEE people creating content. Paramount were killing this stuff while it was still in its infancy [dhs.org]. Even if they do manage to license the whole kit and kaboodle, can you picture the tortous EULA and T&C's for a Star Trek MMORPG? Try and imagine the limitations that will be placed on players, and the atmosphere of fear and mistrust that will spring up. If you think Sony Online have poor customer relations [penny-arcade.com], just wait until you meet a Paramount Intellectual Property Protectorate lawyer in game. The Borg are a pale shadow of these guys.

    Sure, it could go differently, but years of history says otherwise. Best not to get your hopes up over this one.

The world is coming to an end--save your buffers!