Pimp my Intrepid
EDIT: Updated the build based on suggestions.
I'm rebuilding my Sci captain's Intrepid to play with some new powers and (I hope) to make it a stronger debuff and team heal ship for Borg RAs and STFs. I have the BOFF and gear layout more or less settled, I think, and I'm trying to decide what skills to pimp with the deflector and console stack. (Comments on changing the BOFF layout or powers to better suit the Borg are welcome though also.)
The build at the moment is:
CDR Sci: GW III / SS II / PO I / TB I
LTC Sci: HE III / TSS II / ST I
ENS Sci: PH I
LT Eng: A2SIF I / EPtS I
LT Tac: APD I / TT I
(Same front and rear)
1x Hargh'Peng Torpedo Launcher Mk XI
1x Tricobalt Torpedo Launcher Mk XII (white)
1x Disruptor Beam Array Mk XII (white)
(I plan to use the Borg set when I get it, but I don't have it right now since I am STF noob.)
1x Field Generator (35% shield cap)
1x Neutronium Alloy Mk XII (white)
1x Automated Defense Battery
1x Borg Assimilated Module
The main powers I am focusing on tweaking are Sensor Scan, Gravity Well, Science Fleet, and Starship Dampening Field. I would also like to have Gravity Well be as useful as I can make it, although I have never used it before, and of course the tooltip gives no useful stats about what the hell it does. So the main choices I seem to have now are with the deflector and consoles. Deflectors I have available are:
Tachyon Deflector Array Mk XI [Sen]x2 (+50 Sensors / +24 Sensor Array)
Deflector Array Mk XI [Sen]x2 (+44 Sensors / +24 Deflectors / +24 Emitters)
Deflector Array Mk XI [Def] [Sen] (+34 Sensors / +34 Deflectors / +24 Emitters)
Aegis (+18 Sensors / +33 Deflectors / +33 Emitters)
I also have full sets of 4x Mk XI (blue) science consoles for boosting Deflector Field (Dampening Field, Science Fleet, shield heals); Sensor Array (Sensor Scan); and Spatial Anomaly (Gravity Well).
My power settings will be 100 Aux, 50 Shields, minimum engines and weapons. I'm basically planning to rely on the beams just for the occasional lucky target subsystem hit, and to make all my DPS contributions with well timed torpedo hits, whatever Gravity Well can put out, and a little help from the Photonic Fleet. I have skilled up engine and shield efficiency/performance and aux performance. With 2x EPtS running all the time, I am at 90-98 shields and 124 aux; 48 engines and 34 weapons. I also raised all the relevant science skills except Deflector Dish and Photonic Theory. (On the ground, I raised just those skills needed to fully pimp Science Kit - Medic + Tricorder Scan.)
I guess my main question at this point is whether to favor more damage resist debuff with Sensor Scan or try to get more power out of GW III. I can max GW III with the Aegis deflector and 4x spatial anomaly consoles, but I have no idea how much difference that makes with the tooltip being broken at the moment. I can also pimp Sensor Scan to around -100 with the standard Mk XI deflector, or max it out at -120 with the Tachyon deflector and 4x Sensor Array consoles. What I don't know is whether a higher debuff or a more poweful gravity well is ultimately more useful.
There is probably 1 thing you will notice after a few STFs, no dedicated healer is really necessary. Depending on if you are going with fleetmates or PUGs you will encounter people with good builds that only need a little assistance in case of emergency and people with bad builds. The people with bad builds will die no matter how many heals you pump in their direction so usually its better to go with a couple of offensive/crowd controling powers and heals.
You are not looking for different abilities but IMHO it would be better to switch SS and GW to GW 3 / SS 2. With a couple of points in Sensor skills and enough auxiliary power SS 2 can give you 25 seconds, usually enough. GW 1 is not that breathtaking but GW 3 can deal quite impressive damage (especially after enemy shields are down) and hold smaller ships in place. Therefore I also would replace Jam Sensors with Tractor Beam so you can be sure to lock the prime target in your GW. Tooltips for Gravity Well are messed up since a patch a few weeks ago, it doesn't display the damage output any longer but it is probably the sciene abilities that deals the most raw damage.
For your heals, do not rely on shield tanking against Borg! As a science ship captain there are enough slots to have both shield and hull heals/resists but your shields will go down in seconds after a Shield Neutralizer and you won't be able to clear them all.
As for the Deflector, I think that is personal preference, Just pick 2 skills you want to support. Personally I don't like the specialized Deflectors like Graviton, Tachyon and whatever the third was, too many abilities that depend on too many different skills. I go with a standard Deflector with good modifiers, then Aegis and later Borg Deflector.
For your science consoles: Ignore +Sensor Probes consoles, skill points in that skill don't do much for Scramble Sensors, auxiliary power is more important. That being said, use Deflector Field and Hazard Systems consoles to help your heals or maybe better Spatial Anomaly consoles to help Gravity Well.
I heard from a fleetmate also that Borg resist Scramble or dispel it quickly anyway. I could swap some BOFF powers around without much trouble also; so along the same lines you're talking, I was just taking a look at Gravity Well III / Tractor Beam III as an alternative. It seemed like the two holds + kinetic damage would be a strong combo; but I thought I remembered reading that Tractor Beam doesn't scale up much with rank or skill points. Should I bother with TB III and skill it up, or just stick with TB I?
I can probably find some hazard system consoles around somewhere to pimp HE III out even more, but it seemed like 20-24K was a crapload of healing already; maybe I'll want even more though. I do know from fighting Borg at lower levels that shields seem to go away instantly no matter what, so I'm more interested in the dampening field / HE hull resists to stay alive.
Not all Borg are immune to SS only the Cubes and Tac Cubes and most Bosses. So if you see a group of Probes, Spheres and a Cube, scramble the Spheres and they will attack the Cube. For STFs, if there is a Boss like Donatra with the old round probes this will tell you they can't be scrambled at all. I have no idea why, they are just different.
Tractor Beam 1 is enough. It will hold PvE ships and only the damage would increase slightly with a higher level. There is also no need to put any points in Tractor Beam Skills. Gravity Well 3 is a strong AoE Hold but the larger ships like Spheres and Cubes will (slowly) move away, that's where the Tractor Beam comes into play to hold the primary target.
It is not really necessary to help HE or PH with consoles, only if there is room left. You can go with 3 or even 4 Spatial Anomaly consoles or whatever and you will be fine. If you want an additional hull heal/resist against Borg, train another engineer in EPtS 1 / Aux2SIF 1, the Aux2SIF can sometimes be more useful than a second copy of EPtS against Borg and will not interfere with Tac and Sci Team like Eng Team would. HE 3 would probably be a waste to simply clear a Shield Neutralizer so Aux2SIF will come in handy.
Well, have fun. You have a lot of torpedoes for a build without CPB and TachBeam so maybe you will have to adjust that, too.
All these points you have in Sensor skill should also help your subsystem targeting, so if you are not happy with the APDelta 1 and don't want to try APBeta 1 you can use TSShields 2. This way you can get more chances for Tricobalts to hit the hull and also your Gravity Well will deal more damage.
When I go soloing just running dailies or whatever, I have a whole other, opposite build I use; MVAE with tetryons, Tachyon Beam III, Target Shields, etc., to rip down shields and finish things off quick with torpedos. With the Intrepid though, I never felt like I could really get good damage relying on my weapons alone, and that seems kind of counter to the purpose of a science ship in a team setting as well. So this time around I'm trying the approach of amplfying team damage and jumping in with torpedos when I get the chance.
Decker is giving some good advice.
And I said Borg big ships. Big ships! ROFLAMO :D
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