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prometheus59650

Star Trek: Bridge Crew VR Game

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Hell yes, reboot or not this looks promising

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It does look very spiffy.

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Finally, the first VR Star Trek game.  It'll be released this Fall for Playstation VR, and on the PC through Oculus Rift and HTC Vive.  I believe this is the ideal state where ST gamers want to be; but cost will be a HUGE factor.  The Playstation VR Launch Bundle is $500 (best bet).  For the PC, the Oculus Rift is $832 and the HTC Vive headset can be had for $980.  If you elect to go the PC route, you might also need to upgrade your graphics card so your system can handle VR gaming.  That might set you back about $700.  Alienware does offer a PC VR bundle for $3200.

Hopefully, I see a Playstation VR in my future (maybe for Christmas?).

TrekCore's coverage is here:

http://gaming.trekcore.com/startrekbridgecrew/

 

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Since we already have a PS4 and there are other games that are exclusive to the Playstation VR coming out (such as Batman: Arkham VR), I'm going with Playstation VR, and I do plan to get Bridge Crew. I'd like to do a captain with more wisdom and discipline than frat-boy Kirk!

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When this comes out it'd be nice if there was somewhere for Omega Sector members to get together on PS4 - not sure how that would work...

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So the game is now released.  Does anyone have it?

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I get a kick out of it! I think my favorite two positions are the captain itself and the helm station. As captain, I enjoy reprimanding insubordinate crewmembers and state that just because the commander of the flagship went from cadet to captain, it doesn't give them the right to act like jerks. I like being tough-as-nails.

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Posted (edited)

14 minutes ago, Rusty0918 said:

I get a kick out of it! I think my favorite two positions are the captain itself and the helm station. As captain, I enjoy reprimanding insubordinate crewmembers and state that just because the commander of the flagship went from cadet to captain, it doesn't give them the right to act like jerks. I like being tough-as-nails.

You should review it for those of us who won't be getting the chance. :)

Edited by prometheus59650

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STAR TREK: BRIDGE CREW review

Initially I was a bit on the ropes about this when it first got announced, but I looked into it more after CBS/Paramount's decisions about Trek fan-films after the Axanar fiasco, which got me pretty hooked onto it. I was bummed when it got delayed twice (I put it on my Christmas list), fearing it would become another "Star Trek: Secret of Vulcan's Fury." For those of you who don't know what that was - it was a computer/video game to be released by Interplay in the late 1990's (who gave us a lot of TOS centric games) - it would have CGI re-created original series characters, portrayed by their real life counterparts (Shatner, Nimoy, etc.) and a storyline written by D.C. Fontana. Unfortunately, the game ended up in development hell, suffering from it being too expensive to produce. The whole project was eventually cancelled in 1999. I wasn't totally looking forward to it but I know there were many that were.

The main setting in "Star Trek: Bridge Crew" is in the Kelvin timeline, which can be a turn-off for some purists (heck I was on the ropes on ST09 and was not a fan of STID, although I did enjoy Beyond), but that didn't turn me away from the game. For the main storyline and the bulk of the game, you're on the USS Aegis: NX-1787, a new experimental Federation starship launched shortly after the events of "Star Trek (2009)." However, an option was added later allowing you to play ongoing missions on the original Prime Universe TOS Enterprise (which caused the second delay).

Anyways, about the USS Aegis (NX-1787) - eat your heart out Kirk! The Enterprise may be the flagship (I'm talking about the Kelvin-verse one that doesn't last very long) but you know what? The Aegis is cooler than Enterprise (at least that's my opinion)! The design has really grown on me. It looks better than the JJprise, I think about the promotional stuff for ST09 saying that it's a young crew on "the most advanced starship ever created" - well not for long. She may be the flagship again, but the Aegis is the real deal! One of the reasons for this is that the designers want to make it feel like these are YOUR adventures and not James T. Kirk's. And I like that, especially someone who thinks outside the box like I do. In fact, the Aegis design is also seen in the "Star Trek: Boldly Go" comic book series as the design for the USS Endeavour, Kirk's interim command before the Enterprise-A seen at the end of Beyond is launched.

I have the PS4/PSVR version of the game and I confess to using the standard gamepad over those move controllers (I tried the move controllers and well - I might try again but not at the moment). But still the immersion is great. You of course get the obligatory disclaimers and warnings as well as a few other things until you're treated to the opening screen and later a shuttle that takes you around the Aegis so you can see the ship you're on all around. Here you can change your avatar. The avatar options are mostly pretty basic. You can choose from male, female with some different hairstyles and faces, as well as opting between Human and Vulcan (no Andorian, Tellarite, etc. options). One thing that they should have done was give the people who play female avatars a pants option instead of having to wear the skirt uniforms (since there were such in the reboot movies). It's a minor gripe, since most of the players are in fact men (or boys for that matter). Besides, I can imagine people below decks wearing different outfits.

The tutorials are vital if you want to play this game properly, you get to learn what each station does and its controls. You are one of four roles on the bridge of your ship: the Captain, the Helm Officer, the Tactical Officer, and the Engineer. Each station has its perks and such. It's important to do these before trying to operate the Aegis.

You can fly alone with AI people (which I hear has been improved on by IBM's Watson), but it's really no substitute for on-line co-op with three other people. When you join you're taken into the briefing room where you meet your other fellow players. Some can jump out, some can jump in. The Captain gets to choose the mission you're flying as well as a few other parameters. The main storyline - exploring an area of the space known as the Trench on board the USS Aegis. Now when you start out, there is a rank system that is usually meant to show experience - from Cadet, Ensign, Lt. JG, Lieutenant, Lieutenant Commander, Commander, and finally Captain (my character has already reached captain). The Trench story has five episodes. This may not seem like much, but keep in mind that this kind of co-op VR thing is VERY new and mass-market VR is very much in its infancy, so you have to take that into account. These missions can offer varying challenges as you progress. There's also an Ongoing Missions option that will randomly generate missions - there are four types to choose from (or you can have a type randomly chosen for you): Research (it's cataloguing anomalies, with some surprises), Rescue, Defend, and Retrieval. These can either be done on the Aegis or the Original Enterprise.

For new players, the tutorials are a must. After, you might want to choose another station other than captain - Helm, Tactical, and Engineering. Each one is vital to the operation of the ship, sort of get to learn the ropes before trying to take the center seat, and have a more experienced player be the captain as he/she gives you orders, as you work your way up the ranks. I'll go into details about the stations. I haven't done the Original Enterprise ongoing stuff yet, but from what I heard, the UI for that is very difficult (come on, what do you expect from candy-colored buttons?).

Helm - this allows you to "drive" the ship. Your main control interface is this huge touchscreen in front of you that has a speed slider as well as the means to steer the ship using a control pad on the right. There are three map options - Local, Impulse, and Warp. Local is what's in your area, Impulse takes you to different areas within a star system, and Warp takes you to other systems. There's also the chrome throttle to your left that allows you to engage full impulse or warp depending on the course you set. However, you must rely on the engineer to provide you appropriate power to warp or impulse to new destinations, and to adjust your max speed in immediate vicinities.

Tactical - this allows you to target enemy ships and other hostile objects and blow them away with phasers and photon torpedoes. This station is the one to scan targets and anomalies, which is essential, as well as raising the shields. The shields don't raise immediately when you put them up, you have to wait a few seconds, and of course you have to wait for the torpedoes to reload and the phasers to recharge after you fire them. Phasers have two settings - blast/burst which fires in pulses which is meant to damage the ship directly, and beam which is meant to target specific subsystems.

Engineering - This is where the main systems are managed. You route power wherever needed - there are three areas of power - engines, phaser range (this doesn't increase the damage index or the recharge rate of the phasers, just its max range), and shields (most likely their recharge rate). This is also where you repair subsystems and charge the warp coils which is necessary to be done before entering warp.

Helm, Tactical, and Engineering have access to two additional functions (if one accesses it, the other two can't) - Transporters and System Intrusion. Transporters are used to beam people up off other vessels, escape pods, or the like. You can lock onto a maximum of six people and then beam them up (locking does take time), and beaming more than six people off takes multiple times. The other function - System Intrusion, can be especially useful. There are a few mission specific options in this, but the main options are to disable a ship's weapons (make them unable to fire) for a limited time, isolate their shield frequencies (allowing you to fire phasers right through their shields as if they weren't there for a limited time), and to disable engines - rendering your target a sitting duck (again for a limited time). After this is used once you have to wait for it to recharge, but it can be quite useful. Again, Helm, Tactical, and Engineering have access to these functions - although if one of these functions is being used at the moment, the other two stations can't use it (such as if Tactical is using System Intrusion - Helm and Engineering can't use is).

And now the Captain's Seat. The captain has controls on both armrests. The right one allows them to answer hails, as well as initiate red alert, review mission objectives, and view the overall status of the ship. The right view shows the different map types (warp, impulse, and local) that the helm does as well as adjusting the viewscreen accordingly.

If you're playing alone with AI's, or if you're cooping with fewer than three (at least one station manned by an AI), you can take over that station rather than send commands to the AI. Usually I'll do this if helm or tactical drops out so I can have better control. Also, if there's a player that's being non responsive or insubordinate, if you're the captain, you can kick them and take over his/her station, which I did once recently (as one of my fellow crewmembers said - I sent them to sickbay!)

If you're an experienced officer (like a captain) in command, and one of your officers has just done the tutorials and is new, you might want to start them out on the easier missions, such as the Shakedown (which you can apply the basics for) - also has a few subtle nods to Trek lore. Trying to have an inexperienced player going with you on a more challenging mission can ruin things and can get you all killed! Coordination is key in this game, especially with on-line co-op. You have to make sure your other crew can communicate. There are some times that I've had to deal with people who wouldn't carry out my orders as a joke. One thing I like to do for fun is if there are greenhorns among my bridge crew, tell them that if they think they can be a whiny devil-may-care um...whatever...just because a certain cadet leapfrogged directly to captain, that they're dead wrong! I like being hard as nails as captain, although I do chuckle at the role playing from time to time.

Again - co-op VR is well in its infancy here, and there are definitely limitations. Yes there are many features some would yearn for, such as an opportunity to pilot the Enterprise-D from TNG. However, we should be happy for what we got. This kind of technology has only recently been made available to more people and before that, it was so terribly expensive that to many it wasn't worth it. And UbiSoft, RedStorm, etc. did a spectacular job. Maybe in due time we will be able to beam down to strange new worlds, etc, or roam our ships. But for now, this should satisfy many. This was worth the wait.

Rating: 9/10

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Wow, thanks for that detailed review!  

Well done.  :thumbup:

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You got it!

Additional review ammendum here:

I forgot to mention a few things. As with enemies, you're dealing with either Klingons or pirate scum (space pirates that is). Pirates strangely enough have ships who had their design inspired by Spock Prime's "Jellyfish" vessel in ST09 (I would have appreciated a clunkier, blockier, more utilitarian design for them, but so what?). As with Klingon ships, they're either flying Birds of Prey (I think Enterprise-era-looking ones), D5 cruisers (I think another Enterprise-era design), and the D7 "Warbird" battle cruisers (they're called warbirds in ST09, and they're called that here, though I just prefer "battle cruiser"). No Romulans, or any other enemy types for that matter.

Other Starfleet vessels appear in the game as well, most notably one of the sister ships to the ill-fated Kelvin, as well as a few others such as a Kelvin-like ship without the energineering hull on top.

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