ST:BC Got TNG DLC on WIN

If you’ve ever wanted to blow up the Enterprise D, I’ve got good news.

Burn baby burn

Star Trek: Bridge Crew looked fun before, but when they finally patched the Windows version to let you play without a virtual reality helmet of shame I wasn’t able to get the game to work thanks to an error message popping up every few minutes and destroying all of my progress.

Finally, the latest patch fixed whatever was broken and now I can stay in the game as long as my family will let me, and they’ve also just added Star Trek: The Next Generation content to the Windows version. I am almost as happy as a targ in shit, except the DLC has been available on the PlayStation VR Goggle System for months.

The good news is that if any of our cross-platform friends on that PlayStation 4 are still looking to crossover some chairs as oddly as you can, ST:BC TNG DLC absolutely won’t let them. Ubisoft’s bridge game is all business, don’t get any ideas Commander Riker.

Fire

The bad news is that the game’s art still has a very strange weird and plastic style that makes it look a little bit like something from 2005, at least when you’re in the non-VR mode. I haven’t tried ST:BC with an HMD yet. I’d guess that this is because Ubisoft wants to maintain a solid framerate on console VR systems so that nobody pukes on the bridge.

Ubisoft’s “CrewBots” that substitute when you don’t have enough friends to fill the ship’s roles are as dumb as bricks, they’ll routinely fly directly into asteroids and mines and incorrectly prioritize your orders. Want your shields at full strength? I hope you don’t mind giving the same order again and again. The hilarious excuse Ubisoft came up for the mediocre AI is that anything smarter would somehow destroy the game’s framerate for VR players:

Keep in mind that with VR, performance is at an extreme premium to keep framerates high to avoid player discomfort so highly sophisticated AI that heavily affects that performance was not in the cards. The crewbots are a very effective solution that meets the goals of providing basic crew substitutes without any negative impact on framerates.

The ST:BC:TNG:DLC:ABC:BBD does add the Borg and Romulans as foes, as well as other features and major changes to the Enterprise D’s UI, and then it doesn’t explain any of it. Good luck.

ST:BC:TNG:DLC:TLA is on Steam as well as through Ubisoft’s UPlay store for $15. The base Bridge Crew game goes for $40 and you can’t play the DLC without it.

Star Trek: Bridge Crew Looks Cool As Heck

In the 90’s I went to Star Trek conventions with other nerds who wanted to look at nerd things and circulate pirated tapes of Red Dwarf. With that context in mind I will now tell you that I am extremely psyched to play Star Trek: Bridge Crew because who hasn’t wanted to be on the bridge of a spaceship gesticulating wildly with a bunch of other lunatics in VR space to accomplish whatever Trek bullshit the game calls for.

James Davenport for Windows Gamer (who also produced that incredibly silly animated gif in the top there):

None of us know what we’re doing, and that’s the primary thrust of Star Trek: Bridge Crew. Four people work together on different substations of a ship, moving it around dangerous anomalies, scanning for threats, and shunting power to different systems.

However, it sounds like you’re going to have a difficult time getting the best out of the game as you need many friends with VR setups and even though the game’s multiplayer is cross-platform it’ll still be a hassle to get going according to Games Radar’s Andy Hartup:

You’ll probably never play Star Trek Bridge Crew. At least, not how it’s really meant to be enjoyed. That’s not because this is a poor game, or that it lacks features or fan service – it’s just too rarefied an experience. While you can crew both the USS Aegis and the Enterprise with fewer than four human crew members, it really isn’t the same experience. And while you’ll be able to find randoms or players from LFG groups to boldly go with, Bridge Crew is infinitely better when played with friends. So that’s four of you, with VR headsets, and a copy of the game, and the will and time to role-play Star Trek. Even we, a website that writes about games, VR, and Star Trek really struggled to put in the necessary playing time and overcome the technical hurdles to squeeze the best out of this wonderful game.

One thing that might make a fun multiplayer Bridge Crew experience slightly more likely is that anyone who buys an HTC Vive in June (you’re not going to wait for some kind of revision and price drop at this point, really?) will get the game for free.

Star Trek: Bridge Crew is $50 and available now for Windows with the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive HMDs on Steam, or Playstation VR on the Playstation 4.