Star Trek Licence Beamed Up – Red Shirt Doesn’t Make It

Kirk, Spock, and McCoy beam down to the planet. They need a little extra help so they take the bloke in the red shirt. We all know who isn’t beaming back up.

In the meantime Kirk loses his shirt and seduces the beautiful alien priestess.

No tears are shed for Mr. Red Shirt.

In the same way, I doubt there will be any tears shed for P2 Entertainment (formerly known as Perpetual Entertainment) losing the Star Trek licence.

The news is out today (Massively, Warcry, Disgruntled Gamer) that P2 Entertainment has ceased development on Star Trek Online and has transferred the Star Trek licence to an unnamed developer. This developer is supposedly in the San Francisco Bay Area, and may be Cryptic Studios according to rumors uncovered by Massively.

So, the good news is that Star Trek Online may have beamed up just in time to escape the Deadpool.

There is bad news though.

Originally slated for release this year, only the Star Trek licence and the art assets have been transferred to the new developer. The program code has not been transferred. This means the new developer now has to redevelop ALL of the code from scratch. That’s not just the client, it’s the server software as well.

This could easily take another three years, unless a turnkey solution is used. If not, expect that the art assets will also be redeveloped. Three years is a long time in the computer graphics field. That’s also not taking into account the fact that a new developer may have a new philosophy on what they want to see out of the Star Trek licence. I expect the developer to start completely from scratch, graphics, code, everything.

On the upside, if it is Cryptic Studios who have won the Star Trek licence, then expect a decent game to emerge at the end of all this.

Cryptic brought us the acclaimed City of Heroes/Villains MMO which is still going strong. They recently sold of the rights to CoH/CoV to NCsoft (who published them) and have announced that they are working on new projects.

It’s possible that Cryptic could fast track the development of Star Trek Online, as they have the domain expertise. If they have a client and server that could be used for development, then all the better.

Still, it’s a sure thing that STO won’t see the light of day this year.

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