Tactical Officer Lacking in survivability and DPS. Tips? [Escort]
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Join Date: Dec 2007
06-09-2011, 01:44 PM
Hi, decoy, welcome to PvP! I hope that you've enjoyed your time so far, and that we can help you to find a build that works for you.
So, to start things off, a few observations for you:
Your build looks like it's starting to come together, but it's still a little disjointed, and streamlining what you have will help you to increase both your effectiveness and your survivability.
The Defiant-R gives you tremendous flexibility in choices of your Tactical BOff powers, and the first and most important consideration (particularly for the Defiant-R, but also for any Escort) is to squeeze two copies of Tactical Team into your build. Tac Team is the single most important tanking power for Escorts, as it gives you access to the full value of your Shields for ten out of every fifteen seconds. Just that small change will help immeasurably with your survivability.
Generally, it is considered a detriment to run more than one type of energy weapon (Plasma, Disruptor, etc.), because, as you have noticed, it can be very skillpoint intensive to run a dual-energy spec. Thus, I would recommend that you decide which of the two energy types that you prefer, and stick to weapons just of that type. Disruptors are nice, as they are the 'cheapest', in terms of skillpoints, and have a great proc, but Plasma can be useful, especially if you build around getting the fire proc as often as possible.
For your choices of weapons, there are basically two paths that you can take: first, would be to run a combination of energy weapons and a torpedo launcher (whether that is strictly cannons and torps, beams and torps, or a combination of all three); the second would be to run only energy weapons (all beams, all cannons, or a combination). Since you are already comfortable with running without a torpedo launcher, I would suggest that you start by tweaking your setup for the energy weapons-only, and see if you can make it work for you.
For your Engineering and Science powers, you can streamline things a great deal by figuring out where you want your shield Healing and hull healing to come from. This will save you both on skillpoints and will simplify your overall layout. While Tachyon Beam is a useful power for a Science Vessel, an Escort rarely runs high enough Aux to derive the greatest benefit from the power, and you'll likely be better off replacing it entirely (to say nothing of the skillpoints that you'll save by eliminating the need for spec-ing into Deflector Dish). Thus, your choices would be to run EPtS and an Eng Team for your Hull Healing in your Engineering slot, while running Shield heals (Science Team and Transfer Shield Strength) in your Science slot, or, as is more common for Escorts, run 2x EPtS in your Engineering slots, and run Hazard Emitters and another Emitter-based power in your Science slot (Tractor Beam, Polarize Hull, etc).
CRF3 is a good Commander-level Tactical power, especially if you are not a Tactical Captain, however, if you are a Tactical Captain, one of the high-level Attack Patterns (Omega, in particular) might serve you better in that slot. You can always run a lower-level CRF and not notice much dropoff in your damage output.
That's just a few thoughts, and I'll go into a little more detail once I have some time.
To answer a few of your questions:
DHC's and DC's deal the same overall DPS, however, the much higher hitting power of the DHC's leads to higher hits and much more effective spike damage, which is the Escort's greatest strength. DC's provide pressure damage, and, if you run torpedoes, can help land your torpedoes on bare hull, but for overall versatility, the DHC's are simply superior.
Ideally, you want to get it so you don't have more than 5-6 weapons firing in any given arc, to maximize your weapon power management: thus, an effective all-energy weapon loadout might be:
3x DHC's fore
1x Dual Beam Bank fore
1-2x Turrets aft
1-2x Beam Arrays aft
AEGIS is an ideal choice for an Escort, in the interim, however, I would recommend grinding Emblems (52) to trade for Marks of Honor at Battle Group Omega, and pick up one of the [Cap]x3 shields (Covariant or Resilient) from K-7.
The Borg Assimilated Module is a must, so I recommend finishing Assimilation ASAP.
For your Tactical Consoles, if you go all-energy weapons, you'll want 4 of the Consoles that boost that specific energy-type. There are no penalties for stacking any types of consoles in the game (the so-called 'diminishing returns' only apply to consoles that provide damage resistance, and it is NOT true diminishing returns, but a poor representation of the formulas that determine resistance, which are to blame).
Finally, for your BOff layout, if you want to try all-energy weapons, here's a thought:
Comm. Tac: APO3, CRF2, Beam: X (your choice) 2, Tactical Team 1
Lt. Comm. Tac: CRF2, APB/D 1, Tactical Team 1
Ensign Tac: Beam: X (your choice) 1
EPtS2 and ET1 OR EPtS2 and EPtS1
Shield heals: TSS2 and ST1
Hull Heals: HE2 and either PH1 or TB1
If you have any questions, feel free to ask here or shoot me a PM in-game (@BigRedJedi)
NOTE: I'm on vacation after tonight, until June 12, so my 'Net access will be iffy, at best.