STO: A Community Divided

It seems like every time I read the STO forums, the folks there are getting bent out of shape about something.

This week?  The folks at Cryptic announced that some additional perks were coming to the people who purchased lifetime subs.  A new uniform part, a custom title (Career Officer), access to a “social area” and a “lifetimer only” chat channel.  Oh, right, and queue priority when logging in.

And as usual, the flames began.

Honestly, it doesn’t take much to set off the STO community, does it?  A uniform part-not even a complete outfit, mind you, and we still don’t even know what it’ll actually be?  Could easily end up being a scar shaped like the Atari symbol.  A custom title which I suspect a number of folks will just shrug at?  Personally, I think a bunch of players take more pleasure in using their rank as title more than any of the special ones given out so far (Ambassador and Special Envoy).  A social area-what, like the ones on Vulcan, Risa, and Andoria are being used a lot now?  Does anyone really think that this “Captain’s Table” is going to be any more populated?  A chat channel-big deal; I personally turned off my zone chat a long time ago, and use a special tab to deal with communicating with folks without spam.  And since it’s just another channel, ten to one that it sees activity for about a week…and then drops to nobody; or gets used for fleet recruiting.  Queue priority?  Has anyone actually been in a queue in the last few weeks?  I’ll concede that one is a bit more of a sticking point for me, though-everyone should have equal game access.  But I’d be more concerned if there had been any queues in the recent past.

It’s not even unique to STO; the same announcement was made to the Champions Online lifetimers.  There’s a minor flap going on over there too, although I don’t see anything near the vitriol that the STO forums have-and they’ve more right to flame; if memory serves, they don’t even have the option to purchase CO lifetime subs anymore.  STO players still can.

And yet, all this is going to “divide the community”.  Isn’t the community doing a smashup job of that on its own?  Seriously?

The funniest part to me will come in time:  many MMOs have “veteran rewards” to thank those who have been subbed for extended periods of time.  And when that happens for STO, the same people squealing about the lifetimer perks will be defending their rewards against newer players who will complain they have to wait X months to get the same things.  Think it won’t happen?  I still see occasional threads doing just that in the most civil forums I’ve read for a game, City of Heroes (except the lifetime aspect, since, you know, they never had ’em).  I should really take names from the people yelling the loudest, for comparison’s sake, when that does happen.

Rightly or wrongly, the impression the STO forum community gives me is that no matter what happens, no matter what is offered, no matter what is fixed, it’ll still find something to keep squealing about.  At this point, I’m not so sure I’d mind having the community divided-can I choose which portion to excise?

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