To Boldly Go…
One particular franchise has lived long and prospered on both the big screen and small screen. Star Trek, from the original in 1966 through multiple series, movies, cast, crew, Star Ships and decades, it has continued where so many others have disappeared. Very few franchises have survive as long and found so much success across generations; Star Wars, Doctor Who and of course Star Trek are perhaps the most notable to have done so.
The original Star Trek is of my Dad’s generation, despite its cardboard sets and awful special effects it had some bold science fiction, some of which even became science fact, which has inspired many inventions and scientists in the preceding decades. Laser beams, teleporters, tractor beams, automatic doors and even the mobile phone to name just a few examples.
With all of these achievements in mind, why has the franchise never boldly gone into the Gaming space? There have been a few titles over the years but none have really stood out in the way the TV series has done. I find this so strange as it has the perfect formula for an epic video game series. The emphasis on exploration, dialogue and the freedom an entire Galaxy/ Universe could provide leaves me wondering why it hasn’t happened yet… perhaps the hardware hasn’t been good enough to realise such a game before.
The PlayStation 4 and Xbox One are more than powerful enough to make this game a reality. In fact, several studios have already created a sort of template for how the gameplay could work in a Star Trek game; Bioware and CD Projekt Red have both created games where dialogue, player choice and the consequences of those choices are ultimately the deciding factor in a players experience. Both feature strong narratives, combat mechanics (neither combat system would be particularly appropriate in this instance so some work would be required here) and aside from the Fantasy setting, of The Witcher 3 and Dragon Age: Inquisition, already feel like what a Star Trek game should be.
Perhaps Bioware are ahead of me on this and Mass Effect: Andromeda will be in essence the game I am asking for but I feel there will be too much focus on the combat and that is where Star Trek differs from so many other franchises. The Star Ship Enterprise is not a combat vessel, it is not a vehicle of warfare and it’s crew are not soldiers. It is a vehicle of exploration, of science and adventure. That is why it is so special and has been for so many years. This is also why I rule out games like Elite: Dangerous (Which I love) and Star Citizen as they focus far too heavily on the combat side of things to be considered a good Star Trek game.
Perhaps one day we will see a Star Trek game; Where the focus is not on combat but on exploration and player choice. Perhaps we won’t, but I think the world is ready for one. What do you think?
As it turns out, there is indeed a Star Trek game coming to consoles. It has been out on PC for a while although I didn’t actually know about it. They announced it only yesterday, the console launch of the game, when I had finished drafting this post. I’ve heard mixed things about Star Trek online but ultimately it’s worth giving a try when it launches later this year because it’s a free-to-play title. I’ll report back on how it is and let you know if it is indeed the game I’ve been hoping for.
Comment, like, share and tweet me @adamthomas1994, @OutoftheXfire or @outoflivespod to let us know.