It has to be said, the gameplay in STO these days is extremely unrewarding and the economy is a joke.
I feel as if the only reliable way to earn huge amounts of EC's these days is to open lockboxes and sell lockbox keys, and this isn't good.
I am especially struck by how little actual active gameplay drives the economy. Epic loot drops of high desirability and value which are a staple of most MMORPG's have been suspiciously absent from the game since its creation.
For a brief time it did seem STO was heading in the right direction with the Borg Task Force revamp and the Prototype Borg Tech drops(Though they were bind on pickup, and got undone when Cryptic caved to self-entitled whiners and introduced the Omega Reputation system) along with Mk XII gear drops coming exclusively from Elite Task Force missions.
That said there was still great value to be found subsequently in Very Rare gear drops from other queues, missions and warzones that commanded respectable prices, consoles, weapons, etc.
Unfortunately the entire loot system has pretty much been undermined by the crafting revamp and the introduction of reputation gear, fleet gear and re-engineering.
I can't think of a single piece of equipment that drops anymore that is worth even a fraction of high value lockbox weapons and crafted special gear that as of yet cannot be re-engineered.
And speaking of crafting, that too is something that Cryptic has heavily undermined the economic value of by introducing phoenix tech upgrades.
As a result and the frequency of those promotions, superior and experimental tech upgrades are only worth a mere fraction of what they used to be.
Alright so I'm rambling a little here, definitely venting a bit, but what do I want out of this?
Well it would be nice if Cryptic started thinking about the in-game economy a bit more, and perhaps actually put some of that lockbox RNG back into the game.
Dial back the phoenix promotions a bit maybe? or give crafted and dropped gear some nice unique procs or modifiers that cannot be obtained by simply re-engineering existing gear.
Give us some highly prized rare item drops from various sources that are "bind on equip" that we could keep or trade with other players. Like what if Elite TFO's had an extremely rare chance to drop unique Vanity Shields/Engines/Deflectors? Vanity shields seem to have been a big hit with the community lately, and the introduction of unique drops like that in TFO's would give people a genuine incentive to play them, to have a shot at that "shiny" that makes them feel special, or alternatively sell it to rich players who want to have that rare and special "shiny" and becoming rich in turn.
All that I'm saying, is that the game economy could use an overhaul, and reward more actions than just sitting on ESD buying keys and opening boxes.
"If you can't take a little bloody nose, maybe you ought to go back home and crawl under your bed. It's not safe out here. It's wondrous, with treasures to satiate desires both subtle and gross. But it's not for the timid." - Q