Star Trek Online, The Old Republic and Age of Conan.

Sad to say, but the absurd headache and general ill-feeling in my noggin is not the result of excessive New Year’s revelry, but rather the after effects of a particularly painful dental surgical operation. Wisdom tooth pulled, an an impacted molar removed (after grinding the jaw bone away to get to it) means that this post is brought to you by painkillers and finds me in somewhat dazed, painkiller induced stupor. Yes, poor me, now on to the news!

What news? Most developers only went back to yet like… yesterday! Still, let’s scrape the bottom of that ol’ barrel once again, see what we can dredge up for ya.

The first thing I’d like to bring your attention to is a very special episode of STOked, the unofficial Star Trek Online podcast. With the STO launch beginning to loom large on the horizon (February 2nd, Trekkies!) it’s not surprising that Cryptic Studios have begun to lift their NDA’s regarding coverage, and the STOked crew have gone above and beyond, proving a full hour’s worth of information and beta coverage, also answering phone in and IRC questions from their readers and listeners. Worth a look.

As a complete aside, I had a rather boring day yesterday (recovering from the aforementioned dental surgery) and decided to just power through the Star Trek Online Path to 2409 lore (never been one for MMO lore really) and if you’re into Trek, it’s pretty fascinating reading and at the very least shows Cryptic seem to be taking the franchise seriously.

If you’re a more visual type of fellow, then you’ll be pleased to know have a set new brand new screenies to ogle. “Ogle” is a funny word.

Last bit of STO news for today, I promise, but Massively have put up a short, but well written piece that outlines their thoughts on the first few levels of gameplay in Star Trek Online… they don’t sound particularly impressed. It’s fair to say then that we’re getting mixed signals regarding STO, but so far it sounds like if you’re just a regular gamer, you might not exactly be bowled over, but if you’re a Trekkie, the lure is hard to resist.

Not to be outdone, that other sci fi MMO, Star Wars: The Old Republic is also in the headlines this week thanks to the release of a spankin’ new dev blog (that’s developer blog for you old fogey’s) that goes into detail about the capabilities of the game’s Imperial Agent class. Star Wars: The Old Republic looks to be shaping up to be a real class act, but am I the only one who thinks the game’s website is clunky, unresponsive and uninviting?

I hate to say it, but I TOLD YOU SO! have voted Age of Conan as their “Most Improved Game of 2009“. Regular readers will know I often harp on about just how much better the game has become since its initial launch, and I think the constant plaudits and recognition over the past few months vindicates me. It’s hard to believe AoC is going into its second year of release, seems like only yesterday I was submitting bug report after bug report to Funcom *wipes tear from eye*. Oh yeah, Dungeons and Dragons Online came in second, it’s free, give it a go, what have you got to lose?

Now if you ladies and gents will excuse me, I’m off to play a quick game of Civilisation Revolution before topping up on painkillers and passing out on the couch…