Thursday, September 27, 2007


Cutscenes are one of those things that even developers can't agree on.

On the one hand, seeing a particularly cool scene rendered (especially if you can then go back and view it any time you like) can be used as a reward for successful gameplay.

On the other hand, interrupting active gameplay with a non-interactive mini-movie disrupts the flow of play. While I'm not a console gamer, even I've heard how Hideo Kojima is infamous for the extended cutscenes in the various Metal Gear games.

This may be a larger concern in more controlled FPS-type games than an MMORPG, but it's still a technical concern in a persistent world: while the cutscene is playing, is the player's avatar still in the world (and thus susceptible to tells or interaction with mobs)? Or do you have to temporarily unplug the avatar from the world, then plug him or her back in when the cutscene is over?

So which of these is more of an issue for a Star Trek Online?

There's also the question of whether cutscenes should be rendered using the in-game engine (as Half-Life did to great effect), or whether they should be pre-rendered to show scenes of quality or content that aren't possible in-game.

Which of these would be more appropriate for a Star Trek MMORPG?