You start of the game with the basic ship which you can see in the image above. The ability to upgrade your ship and crew forms just one of the many segments of the game. The choice of ships is impressive from a Steam runner class, all the way up to a Borg cube. You improve your ship by finding and collecting schematics, these are “drops” in certain missions or you can buy them from the dilithium store. Obviously buying them means you get your hands on your desired ship quicker. But it is possible to get the schematics by grinding missions, although this takes a while.
Now once you’ve got your ship you hit Warp and travel to various places in the galaxy to run faction missions, see above. The faction missions reward you with credits and item drops. The credits you accumulate and can spend in the ingame store, when you perform tasks in games you also earn chronitons. The chronitons are a second ingame currency, these you use to buy away team slots and or equipment to upgrade your officers and ship. They are also another way to get ship schematics. The time portal is in the ingame store for credits, chronitons you spend at “home planets, I.e Earth for the federation. A tip on credits, you can spend in two ways, one that’s costs a small amount and one that costs a significant amount. Save up and buy at the higher cost. The rewards this generates are bigger and can also include an officer. The third currency is the afore mentioned dilithium. This costs real money via an in game purchase. Which is a crucial point, although this app is free to download at some point your going to have to part with money in order to achieve certain things. But as they say, no such thing as a free lunch.
Your officers have slots seen on the image above, the missions you run give “drops.” These drops go in the slots when you have filled four slots you officer can rank up in ability and skill level. This part can be annoying. I once ran a mission 14 times to get the desired item I needed. Which depletes your in game energy and meant it took me the best part of a day to get one item. This increases in frustration when your officer needs to rank up to complete a mission. You see they move up in blocks of ten. I had to have an engineer with lvl 50 engineering skills to compete a section. So effectively I was stuck until I achieved this. Which brings me to faction missions and your team.
You need a varied team, some faction missions for instance need an engineer, a scientist and a medic. Others need command officers and so on. But you only have four slots per mission and your officer roster also has a fixed number of slots. This of course means you only have a fixed number of officers to choose your four “mission” officers from, well unless you buy more slots, which yes you guessed it costs real money.
The game also involves ship battles which can also be affected by the officers you choose. You start off with one slot and as you rank up you gain more slots. To get to two slots as shown above you have to be level 15 ingame. Later on they’ll also introduce pvp so you may want to make sure you have a good slot selection and ship before taking on other players.
The final element is away missions. These are linked to factions and you select officers to complete a mission, load them onto a shuttle and off they go while you carry on with the game. At the start these are quick say 30 seconds to 10 minutes. As you progress they take up to 3 hours. Keep that in mind, because you sometimes have to send your best officers on away missions in order to complete them. I ran them while I slept or started them prior to work. You officers are then available to you when you need them to run other missions.
Over all I enjoyed the game, yes it has some things that need working on, I felt ship battle was lacking. But my advice, it’s a free download so you have nothing to loose. Try it and you’ll find you can do a lot without spending money. If your enjoying it and seeing where it’s going then what you spend and how far you go is up to you.
One final thing, you need access to the Internet, so if your not in wifi watch your data limit. Oh and John de Lancie is your guide as Q.