The game allows the user to create their own starships, crew it with personnel from the Star Trek universe, and send it on a mission to evaluate its performance. The program was designed with input from Michael Okuda, Denise Okuda, Rick Sternbach, and Doug Drexler, who were responsible for many of the technical or reference-oriented books produced for Trek.
Starship Creator was not well received by the gaming public and was criticized for shallow content, outdated graphics (at the time of release), and almost no gameplay. It has been described as "somewhat interesting for hardcore fans of Star Trek, but unlikely to appeal to most Star Trek fans or general gamers". The game holds a rating 6.2 out of 10 on GameSpot.
Despite disappointing sales and widespread criticism from the gaming community, Simon & Schuster released a sequel in 2000 called Star Trek: Starship Creator Warp II. The sequel added some new classes of buildable starships and allowed for importing of starships created in the original Starship Creator from 1998.