Season 13.5

Season 13.5 has just been announced.

On July 18th, the newest update to Star Trek Online comes to Captains on PC! Season 13.5 will bring with it a brand new Featured Episode, a new Endeavor System for Captains to conquer, and a brand new Admiralty Campaign featuring the latinum-hunting efforts of the Ferengi.

In “Brushfire,” our new Featured Episode, players will be contacted by legendary Klingon General Rodek, voiced by Tony Todd. He’s found a secret prison run by the Son’a, the alien race from Star Trek: Insurrection, and needs your help to rescue a special prisoner. That prisoner, Captains will come to learn, is former Klingon Chancellor Martok, voiced by J.G. Hertzler, who originated the role in Star Trek: Deep Space Nine. The Alliance hopes that Martok will be key in halting the protomatter-fueled advance of the Tzenkethi.

Captains will also get access to our brand new Endeavor System, which offers new challenges in the content you play every day. Players can participate in a new Endeavor every few days and earn immediate rewards for completing specific in-game tasks. These tasks will take you to areas of the game you might play, or to content you’ve never had the chance to try, all for exciting rewards.

And finally, Season 13.5 introduces a new Ferengi Admiralty Campaign, which lets captains send ships on assignments to earn resources in support of the Ferengi Alliance. Don’t send your Admiralty ships out just for exploration, or honor and glory, send them out to bring home that sweet sweet latinum. Remember Rule of Acquisition #18: A Ferengi without profit is no Ferengi at all.

We can’t wait for you to experience everything Season 13.5 has to offer on July 18th. Look for more information on these features soon.

martokBit and pieces have been leaking for weeks, so this is not a huge surprise. I’m happy for the return of J.G. Hertzler as Martok (such a great actor with a distinctive voice!), although the mission description sounds a bit hokey. I mean, Martok was the Klingon Empire’s Chancellor! No one bothered to look for him all this time, until we need help with this protomatter mumbo-jumbo and all of a sudden we remember the guy who supposedly died 18 years ago? Because why wouldn’t a guy who’s dead for 18 years and no known association with our current problem be the KEY? How would anyone even make that kind of leap of logic?

Maybe the mission itself will explain it better.

Still, we’re finally seeing the Son’a. In a long-ago post, I named Insurrection to be my least favorite Star Trek movie, and I thought the Son’a were really, really lame villains. Well, they still are, but their ship designs are sexy. Hopefully this will mean we can kill off the Son’a remnants and steal all their pretty pretty ships!sona-battleship

The Endeavor system is roughly the equivalent of Daily Activities in Guild Wars 2, which I already said might be a good concept to swipe for STO. Essentially the game randomly generates a variety of activities that players can perform for rewards. From the original announcement itself:

Every two to three days, a new Endeavor will begin. Pursue this goal—such as defeating enemies of a certain type, inflicting damage with a particular kind of energy weapon, participating in queues, contributing to your fleet, finishing R&D projects, or one of many other tasks—and you’ll earn instant rewards. Then, the next Endeavor will arrive in just a few days, and you can pursue a new goal to gain even more rewards.

Endeavors will update for Monday and Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, and Friday through Sunday, so you’ll have opportunities to pursue many different goals throughout the week. Whichever Endeavor is active will be active for all players, so you can team up with your friends and fleetmates to complete many of them. And the Endeavors cover a wide range of activities, so if you don’t like one, you might love the next one.

The current Endeavor will appear on your mission tracker, above your current missions. Credit for it is automatic—you don’t need to hail anyone. Just doing the tasks specified in the Endeavor will earn credit. When you finish the job, you’ll be granted rewards automatically.

Endeavors may encourage you to try gear that you haven’t used before, or to play content that you haven’t tried yet. Many of them will reward you just for playing the game. You’ll gain a mix of rewards like a pile of energy credits, a box of marks, bonus dilithium ore, crafting materials, or extra experience points – with a chance to jackpot for an extra-large prize from any of the above! The Endeavor System will be coming soon to Star Trek Online, and heading to our Tribble, our test environment, even sooner. Check back here for more information!

The concept is sound – I have seen this work beautifully in Guild Wars 2…. with one caveat: the rewards. Guild Wars 2 is very smart about this: by completing Daily Activities, players are rewarded with essentially REAL/RARE currency. In STO terms, that’s Zen and Lobi. The Endeavor system instead rewards EC, Marks, dilithium ore, and so on — in-game currency that can be gained elsewhere. I think this is a big mistake, because players will have little incentive to do this! I guess I’ll hold my breath and see the actual system in play, but based on its current description I think it’ll be a wasted opportunity.

Also, they added a Ferengi Admiralty campaign. Which is okay, I guess. Just one more tab on the spreadsheet.


5 thoughts on “Season 13.5

  1. Son’a were kinda lame (definitely cool ships though) and I’d forgotten most of that movie so I had to look it up on memory alpha. In the background info they said it was originally supposed to be Romulans, but they invented the stretchy facers instead “because the film’s creative staff lacked interest in the Romulans”. -___-

    It’s cool guys we’ll just make up a monster-of-the-week race and feature them cause surely fans are just as bored as Romulans as we are and have no interest in any of the other species/cultures we’ve never bothered to fully explore in the series. *sad trombone*

    Yay for Martok though! Maybe that means J’mpok goes to the great trashbin of history along with the war he started. KDF and Feds get together, bonding over protomatter genocides, and together they skip hand in hand, bringing peace and prosperity to the galaxy, just in time to face another invasion of the Dominion in season 15.

    You’re right about the Endeavor system, I think. The rewards have to be much more tempting than just a bit more of all the stuff that you’re basically already awash in for doing anything else in the game. I’m sure they’ll never give out “free” lobi ever again since they cut it from the feature episode replays. I wouldn’t be surprised if they just canceled that entirely, and hopefully put those mission rewards into the phoenix box store. Considering they didn’t even add any of the recent stuff into the last FE replay, they might as well – I’d love to get the Kobali costume on my delta and AOY alts for the price of a R or VR token.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. No I don’t suppose they will. Even a miniscule amount of say 5 Lobi is what you typically get from a lockbox, so I don’t expect them to be handing out 5 Lobi every few days. Maybe they can reward Zen instead, like 10 Zen which is really only like 10 cents in real life. I dunno… they just need to make the reward drastically more attractive for this to work.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. J.G. Hertzler himself as Martok! Sweet! That alone is going to be worth playing the new episode. I hope they’ll have Martok come back to Qo’noS and kick J’m’pok’s ass and be chancellor again. (I’ve never liked J’m’pok. Something has always seemed kinda wrong and “off” about him, and I think we’re about to find out what exactly that is in the whole story arc). I know Worf will be happy to see Martok again.

    As for the Son’a, yeah, I totally agree – lame, but at least they had cool-looking ships. I’d fly one.

    As for the Endeavor missions, meh. I agree that they really should’ve made the rewards something a little more special and worthwhile. Zen and/or lobi and/or tech upgrades would’ve been better because like you said, EC and dil can be obtained lots of other ways (tho they’re still always welcome). It just seems to me that they’re trying anything to get people playing again, and… I’m not sure it’ll work. I guess we’ll see.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Except you know that’s not going to happen. There’s no way Cryptic is going to go back and swap Jm’pok out for Martok on every map and in every mission, and every instance that Jm’pok is mentioned (such as every time you rank up).

      Besides, Martok is super old now and he’s already had his day as Chancellor. He can’t be Chancellor again! Unless he changed his name to Vladimir Putin Martok can’t have another go at the position. >.>

      Liked by 1 person

      1. True, but stranger things have happened in Star Trek and in STO. I mean, we’ve got dinosaurs with freaking antiproton beams shooting out of their heads in the Dyson sphere.

        Besides, Martok doesn’t necessarily have to come back as chancellor. Someone else could. Maybe someone else from the House of Martok (Worf, perhaps? Now that’d be interesting).

        Either way, things are about to get really interesting on Qo’noS when they realize Martok is still alive and back to presumably take command over his house again.


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