Don't get me wrong, I think AoY is cool and all that. It shows that Cryptic IS willing to step outside the box a little bit and do something different. And I also understand that this is their way of honoring Star Trek's 50th anniversary. But we've got a game set in the 25th century, with amazing potential to explore plot ideas that the shows hinted at but never followed up on. And that has been done a little bit, but there is still so much more that can be done in a foreward-going manner. Officially, the movies are rebooted TOS. I remember reading somewhere that the forthcoming new Star Trek show is going to be set between STVI and TNG, exploring the Generation Gap. And while it can be argued whether or not STO is canon, it IS the only officially authorized Star Trek visual medium that is set in the Star Trek PRIME universe, exploring the possibilities of what transpires after Star Trek Nemesis. All the work that went into yet another jump backwards could have been applied to move forwards to let us boldly go where no-one has gone before.
The other reason I think it is a mistake is because it leaves Klingons and Romulans out in the cold, and gives the game a SECOND federation faction, which I do not recall anyone ever asking for. So what's going to happen when we complete the AoY content? We get recruited by temporal agents to join the regular STO content as part of Starfleet, so the only real difference is that AoY is just a big alternative beginning to UFP content? I can't see us being given the choice to join the KDF. It would make even less sense than the Romulans being made to choose between UFP content and KDF content, resulting in Romulan republic officers fighting other Romulan Republic officers. If they would have done the Cardassian faction, which people HAVE BEEN asking for since before we got playable Romulans, at least we could have chosen to join the UFP or KDF like the romulan characters can.
STO's development is all over the place, and not in a good way, in my opinion.
So what would I have done? Well, we know that there is more than one dyson Sphere. And with the UFP, the KDF and the NRR part of a big alliance, I would have made it where the discovery of a link to another galaxy is made, and the alliance gets to explore it together, with a non-violent competition to see which government in the alliance can discover the most. There would still be plenty of hostile aliens to blow up. And oh... this new galaxy would have its sectors procedurally generated and they would remain persistent. And here would be the interesting take on it. While we would be about peaceful exploration, more or less, the inhabitants of the new galaxy would see us as invaders, so there would be an us against them element from the onset, with the possibility to win their trust if we're UFP... or intimidate them into non-aggression, if we're KDF.
In other words, I would have done something that would include all players, be they new or old, not create yet another aspect of the game that divides the community further.
I know... It's a moot point. AoY is what is happening. It is still my opinion that it is a mistake.
When it comes to MMOs, I wear prescription glasses. Whether or not they are rose-tinted is beside the point.