The Best Flight Plan for a AAA Star Trek Adventure May be Engaging One of Gaming’s Oldest Genres

The Best Flight Plan for a AAA Star Trek Adventure May be Engaging One of Gaming’s Oldest Genres


Star Trek is one of the longest-running, most iconic sci-fi franchises in popular culture. While it may not have the same cultural cachet as Star Warsa new Star Trek television series or film has debuted every decade since its inception in 1966. Characters like Captain Kirk and Spock from The Original Series are recognizable to a wide audience, so it’s no surprise that Paramount has capitalized on this nostalgia through current series like Strange New Worlds. Video game adaptations have also been a common part of this brand since the 1970s.

GAMERANT VIDEO OF THE DAYSCROLL TO CONTINUE WITH CONTENT

Mike Mayfield’s text-based adventure game Star Trekbased on The Original Seriesreleased on various old-school computer platforms in 1971. Video game adaptations of the franchise proliferated in the 1980s and 90s alongside shows such as The Next Generation, Deep Space Nineand Voyageras did tabletop and board games set in the universe first envisioned by Gene Roddenberry. That continues to this day with upcoming ventures like Dramatic Labs’ Star Trek Resurgencewhich cribs a narrative-driven style made popular by developer Telltale. However, Star Trek should also consider jumping onboard the resurgence of point-and-click adventure games to boldly go after a modern AAA story.

RELATED: Star Trek: Resurgence’s Branching Narrative Should Learn From FTL’s Storytelling


Point-and-Click Adventure Games are Back in the Limelight

The works of LucasArts and Sierra Entertainment helped define an integral early video game genre, one focused on witty storytelling, exploration, and environmental puzzle-solving. Titles like King’s Quest or Day of the Tentacle offer a direct through-line to the educational library of Humongous Entertainment, known for series like Putt-Putt and Pajama Samas well as a number of modern indie hits. Norcoa point-and-click game by Geography of Robotswon the inaugural Tribeca Games Award in 2021 and was a Best Debut Indie Game nominee at The Game Awards 2022.

This was just one of many point-and-click adventure games to hit storefronts last year. On top of indie projects like Tall Story Games’ Lucy Dreaminga seminal LucasArts franchise came back in Return to Monkey Island. A new entry for the Broken Sword series is also reportedly in development, and major studios put out smaller passion projects like Obsidian Entertainment’s Repentance. While there’s no telling how far this resurgence will go, it’s clear to see the old-school genre has plenty more to give, and a lot of fans willing to step up if bigger studios aren’t making their own.

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Star Trek’s Continual Support Deserves Another Point-and-Click Adventure

Star Trek Picard TNG Cast Return

Star Trek games have run the gamut of platforms and genres over the last 50 years, from aforementioned text-based adventures to platformers, puzzle games, pinball, and more. Within the 21st Century fans have seen cinematic shooters tying into J.J. Abram’s rebooted film franchise, an ongoing MMORPG, mobile strategy games, and even an Ubisoft-published virtual reality simulation of what it’s like to be part of the bridge crew on a Starfleet ship. Star Trek Resurgence and show tie-ins like 2022’s Star Trek Prodigy: Supernova are just the tip of the iceberg for what a modern Trek game can be.

The sci-fi franchise’s focus on philosophical conundrums and worldbuilding across a nigh-infinite universe are perfect for the slower-paced, thoughtful point-and-click puzzles. Star Trek has dabbled in this space before with games like 1992’s Star Trek: 25th Anniversaryas well as more open-ended explorable hubs like the titular station in 1995’s Star Trek: Deep Space Nine – Crossroads of Time. As the universe continues to expand through Paramount+ shows like Star Trek Picard and Lower Decksso too should its video game offerings. Pouring a high budget into more of a niche genre like point-and-click adventures may not seem advisable at first glance, but the audience cultivated by Star Trek is perfectly primed to jump on its current resurgence.

MORE: Modern Star Trek’s Loss is Mass Effect 4’s Gain



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