Patriel "Resistance is Futile" Manning
Possessing a universe that has not been explored to the brink of death and back, Star Trek has almost limitless potential. I have to concede that the series has yet to be explored in any meaningful way. Aside from the upcoming game from developer Digital Extremes based on Abrams' universe, there haven't been any great titles, and that's actually a good thing.
Until recently, the ideas presented in the Star Trek universe have been squarely beyond the hardware capabilities of the common PC, let alone home consoles. To prove my point, take a look at Mass Effect. You'd be hard-pressed to find a Star Wars game with comparatively deep customization, as expansive a universe, and compelling gameplay anywhere near what's offered in BioWare's epic.
Sure, you can find great graphics in The Force Unleashed or anything that Factor 5 has touched, and you can find great gameplay in BioWare's other sci-fi RPG, Knights of the Old Republic. There might even be a good story woven in there somewhere. And why not? As my colleague has so graciously pointed out, there are so many Star Wars games out there that I've simply lost count of them. But that's actually part of the problem. Seriously, ask any fan of the series to name ten bad Star Wars games, then marvel at how quickly he or she is able to rattle them off.
The sad truth is that there have been an amazing amount of great games also. I say it's a sad truth for one reason: there will never be another set of Star Wars games as great as the ones we remember.
Heck, the great Star Wars games we've already played aren't as good as we remember. Looking forward to Star Wars Kinect? Too bad. It's going to suck. Maybe not as much as young Anakin or Jar Jar Binks, but it'll be bad. Sorry to break it to you. How about the inevitable PlayStation Move title that'll release soon after? It'll bomb. Accept it. But what about the next Star Trek title?
That's where the promise is.
Imagine traversing the unknown corners of the universe, seeking out new life and new civilizations, negotiating treaties, or repairing your starship. Imagine your first encounter with Q or the Borg, training on the holodeck, or rising through the ranks, beginning as a cadet at Starfleet Academy and finishing up as Captain of your own galaxy class starship. If you're bored by any of this then go. Boldly. Science fiction doesn't interest you.
And who could bother worrying about 900-year-old Muppets or angry asthmatics in dark helmets when you have characters like Kirk and Spock or Picard and Riker to bring to life in digital form? And while Jordi might not be as dashing as Han "still shoots first, even in the Blu Ray" Solo, the fact that none of the characters in the Star Trek universe have been properly represented in a modern video game is a reason for hope, especially considering the existence of successful titles like Mass Effect.
All things considered, then, it's a pretty simple choice. You could either go with the franchise that's been done over repeatedly since the nearly the birth of video games, or you could go with a franchise that, as yet, hasn't been given a real chance to shine. The choice is obvious. While it's true that the game hasn't been made yet, it's only a matter of time. If waving around a silly sword or deciding which worn-out set of powers appeals to you again, then by all means, have at it. But if you care at all about good science fiction, you simply have to choose Star Trek. Any other choice would be… illogical.
By Angelo D'Argenio / Patriel Manning
CCC Contributing Writer
*The views expressed within this article are solely the opinion of the author and do not express the views held by Cheat Code Central.*