The reason why alot of cruisers can't compete in PVP and PVE with escorts is because the devs are bent of making escorts do everything and be all around better ships. If thats not the case, then why are almost every new ship that they come out with are escorts and armed with cannons? Why is it that torpedos, being the cruiser's most powerful weapon, does little to nothing to shields? Cruisers on the Fed side can't arm heavy cannons like they can on the Klingon side.
To balance out things and slow the drive of everyone rushing to get an escort to use in PVP, they need to either bring up the damage level of beams or bring down the damage level in heavy cannons. There is no guide or manual saying that cannons are better than beams. In Memory Alpha say the the disruptor cannons have more energy then standard phaser banks but took longer to recharge. Standerd phasers in that time were Type 8, while the Galaxy class was armed with Type X and Sovereign was armed with type XII. Those later mentioned phasers were not standard and were mostly on the new most important ships. Now that this is the 25th Century, most ships with the phaser strips would be using type X or type XII phaser arrays. With that being said, the power outputs for cannons and beams should be the same and the damage should be the same. That would make more ships in this game more even, especially in pvp. Lets see if the Devs are really interested in the balance of the game or are they just blowing smoke up everyone's ass.
There have only been 6 Escorts released...
Which doesn't change the fact that they still have much higher damage output which will still annoy OP. But we've gone over this. MANY TIMES. Escorts are SUPPOSED TO HAVE HIGH DPS. THAT'S THEIR JOB. The main problem is how much survivability they have. They have too much of that. If you reduced survivability on them, THEN that would balance them out. An escort should not be able to tank much if anything at all. But they can. So that's where they are broken.
I mean at least they got it right with the BoP, HUGE burst damage, but made of tinfoil (no offense to any BoP pilots reading this, but you probably know what I mean).
For as the other statement about escorts supposed to be more powerful, there is no manual or canon material that says so. Don't be so caught up in the BS that Cryptic feeds you because they are not feeding you with information from any Star Trek canon site. They are making up stuff as they go along just because they are the Devs. I have read the sites on cannons and phaser banks and arrays. I have read sites on the smaller attack ships and the regular cruisers.
"In starship classification, an escort vessel was a starship whose primary purpose is to accompany other vessels as a means of protection. Escorts typically protected lesser armed vessels, or vessels carrying an important cargo.
In 2154, Degra's ship was protected by two Xindi-Reptilian warships, which served as escort ships, during the proving ground Xindi superweapon prototype test mission in the Calindra system. (ENT: "Proving Ground")
In 2368, a radical faction based on the Beta moon of Peliar Zel intercepted the Federation shuttlecraft Hawking claiming to be an escort vessel. (TNG: "The Host")
The Defiant-class, originally developed to counter the Borg, is officially classified as an escort vessel, but was unofficially a warship. (DS9: "The Search, Part I")."
The Defiant for example carries an extreme payload... for its size.
In starship classification, an escort vessel was a starship whose primary purpose is to accompany other vessels as a means of protection. Escorts typically protected lesser armed vessels, or vessels carrying an important cargo. (From Memory Alpha)
In starship classification, a warship or war vessel was a generic term for any armed starship designed for combat. These vessels included battleships, battle cruisers, various sized cruisers, escorts, and destroyers. (Also from Memory Alpha)
Since Starfleet usually uses other "non-violent" terminology to describe their ships, I thought I would include both the Escort and Warship definitions as Star Trek has classified their meaning.
I will now do the same with Cruisers.
In starship classification, battleships were a type of large and powerful warship. In traditional terms, battleships were the most powerfully armed and most heavily armored warships of their era. It is likely that the definition was still true among starships, although standards may have varied by species and technological level.
Starfleet often referred to Jem'Hadar battle cruisers as battleships. (DS9: "Ties of Blood and Water")
The Defiant-class was sometimes referred to as a battleship. (VOY: "Drone")
Satarran agent Keiran MacDuff believed that the Galaxy-class USS Enterprise-D was a battleship, based on her specifications. (TNG: "Conundrum")
In some alternate timelines, Federation Galaxy-class starships were referred to as battleships. (TNG: "Yesterday's Enterprise", "All Good Things...")
Yes the Defiant is mentioned as a Battleship, it was also in Voyager... but its also 3 to1 in favor of the Galaxy class.
Dismissing Voyager, it was the desire of some behind the scenes when creating the Defiant for DS9 that it be a "pocket battleship"
In traditional terminology, a battle cruiser was any large armed cruiser (or warship) with battleship armament, that carried lighter armor than a battleship.
In starship classification, the term battle cruiser was sometimes used synonymously with heavy cruiser. The Klingons once referred to the Federation Constitution-class USS Enterprise as a battle cruiser. (Star Trek III: The Search for Spock)
So even going strictly by what is said, mentioned and seen on screen through all of Star Trek. Something that the original developers said they were trying to stick close to in order to maintain a semblance of easily recognizable features and functions... they have failed miserably.
Therefore, the only escorts that have come out in lockboxes are the JHAS and the two Temporal Destroyers.
Nevertheless, I think that escorts tank a little too well to be called squishy. I think it's mainly due to Tactical Team and speed tanking.
Well i have thought about the rather poor performance of cruisers compared to escorts.
I think its not so much about the weapons (although beam arrays are a bit sub-par, but not by much). The problem is that a cruiser has some problems delivering the damage:
Beam arrays have 2x 70? firing arcs
Beam banks+turrets have 90?
Cannons+turrets have 180?
Which one would you choose in a ship that cant out-turn anything? Against NPCs beam arrays and on some more agile cruisers also beam banks work well enough though.
Then we go on. Escorts have at least one additional tactical console slot which is good for about 15% more raw damage. But this is then multiplied with the very powerful BO-abilities. This is something unique to escorts.
There is no easy fix here. You cannot change the weapons, they are already not that imbalanced. You can also not just nerf tactical BO-abilities, they define the play-style.
So i have dreamed up two solutions:
1.) introduce a multiplier for weapons that works in the same way as the shield multiplier, it just boosts your base damage.
2.) Give cruisers a build-in resistance to weapon energy drain. Instead of reducing the power level by 10 it could only reduce by 7 or so. This needs to be combined with some torpedo-improvements though.
You could even explain both "fixes" with the larger reactor power of cruisers. In both cases escorts would still do more damage, but not by such a large margin as currently.
1: A damage mod would still play in favour of escorts, as it is 1 DHC does 3 times the damage of 1 beam array, a damage mod would simply increase this again
2: Drain resistance wouldn't help, as an engineer I can drive my cruisers weapon power level off the scale and it still doesn't do more than 1700 damage per hit.
What we NEED to fix this is for DHC damage to come down and/or Beam damage to come up. If we look at canon the defiants cannons were designed to give "Equivalent" damage to Beam arrays (I don't remember the source). However even if we were to make the damage levels the same escorts would still do more damage (which is then reasonable) due to the extra consoles and tactical abilities but there wouldn't be the several thousand damage per hit gulf that there is now.
I have detailed where I think they went wrong and my solution here
I think you misunderstood my first point. Only cruisers would get this weapon multiplier and not escorts.
And the weapons are not really that different. Sure a beam array does far less damage than a cannon, but then you can shoot 8 at the same time, but only 4 cannons. If you do a plain dps calculation (without any mods etc.) you will see that a 4 cannons 3 turrets vs. 8 beams setup is only ~15% different.
My second suggestion would improve an 8-beam setup in such a way that it would actually be superior to a cannon setup in terms of raw dps. What makes escorts so powerful are still the BOs and the console slot...
Escorts are fun ships beloved by many right now. It's taken time and Cryptic has finally managed to develop them into this awesome DPS, super maneuverable, destructive machine. The answer isn't to nerf tac/escorts although that would be an easy way to start to balance things out. We do that and many players will have a significantly diminished enjoyment of the game. The answer lies with the Cruisers and Sci ships.
I find it amusing when I read posts that explain how real life naval ships, and canon descriptions, are meant to justify an unbalanced gaming situation. We can rationalize all we want but the end result is that there is a significant amount of dissatisfaction in game balance. As in most MMOs there are essentially three types of ships/classes. These distinct classes are supposed to establish equitable gaming enjoyment for the player community. Each class needs it's own, unique defined role and structure that clearly differentiates it from the others so one doesn't feel like a weak step child of another, but rather contributes in it's own valuable and fun manner.
It has already been clearly established in a number of forum posts that besides being the heavy damage dealers, escorts have a disproportionate tankability or survivability given its main role. There are several ways to deal with this. Since Cruisers are meant to be THE tank for all practicable purposes (yes healer too), make them more tankable. This can be done, again as mentioned in many posts to date, by giving them, for example, a higher shield modifier, increased threat control abilities (pve), boosted skills that deal with healing/damage mitigation above and beyond that which an escort has. In other words and just as an example, TT is a wonderful skill but when everyone has it or has it with the same efficacy then it doesn't help a tank differentiate itself in damage mitigation. I bet that if you give cruisers a more meaningful tanking role you will even hear less complaints about the sorely lacking turn rates.
While we're at it let's take a look at the issue of turn rates. I'm a big proponent of increased turn rates for cruisers. They fly like a brick and it's difficult to maintain full broadside against a skilled opponent (pve but mostly pvp). And why do we cruiser captains hate this? One reason is because our already meager dps from beam arrays are even less effective because we can only get half of them on target. But if you make cruiser dps less important, because they can draw more aggro and tank better, this becomes less of an issue. While there will always be cruiser captains that want to be dps machines, they can still make builds to maximize cruiser dps but shouldn't be able to complain about challenging the dps effectiveness viz a viz escorts because of the clearly defined roles.
Although I have a VA Sci captain, I will be the first to admit my limitations in knowing how to play an effective role here. Also, I understand from a Borticus posting sci will undergo a revamp 'soon', which I hope will deal with sci's specific role similar to the way I tried to clarify that of cruisers.
I'm not trying to take up the old arguments that escorts are too strong or cruisers too weak. Just trying to get people to see that its the lack of clearly defined class roles that is contributing to all the angst. Flame me if you want and feel free to pick apart my arguments, but please keep in mind that I'm not offering definitive specific solutions, but a different way of looking at this long fought over battle. Not that this hasn't been mentioned before, but I don't think the focus has remained on mmo classic roles.
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