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Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 25
12-29-2011, 03:01 AM
I tend to think 25% skill loss in space PvP will simply return PvP to the days of Season 1, because the skill point numbers will be about the same. In Season 1, three things mattered most:

1) Tactics. Today with everyone having skill points in everything, there is generally no incentive for group tactics or an understanding of STO PvP tactics. Note how the Fedball today is about pointless? There was never an evolution beyond the Fedball since Season 2 because Feds never needed to evolve tactically. In Season 1, there were a lot of tactics by Feds and Klingon fleets other than Fedballs and decloak alpha strikes, and I suspect we could start seeing tactics creep into PvP again for a change. It will start at the premade level and work down, as always.

2) Healers. Back in Season 1 Escorts would give up defense to keep peek offense, but they also spent more time working beside a healer. Healers were a big damn deal, and the good ones were easily the most popular players in PvP at the time. I note the game is still very OP towards Engineer Cruiser pilots, and that likely won't change with the new Enterprise coming. I suspect, and it is just a hunch, that a return to healer priority is going to be a positive thing for STO PvP in the long run, because working with a healer requires teamwork by both the healer, and the healed.

3) Nasty Science players. I'm talking about the Science Captain who is so good he makes everything the other team does seem ineffective. That's a lot harder today than it was back when people didn't have points in everything. Now, at some level, the skill point tree will be constricted in a way where something will be given up - and in many cases it will be defense against the confusion and chaos created by science ships. The best science captains will really stand out when they are restricted by skill point reductions.
Season 1 was a different game because of a lot of factors - but I don't think the skill tree and the amount of skill points were the primary factor. The primary factor was how all those BO powers worked in the first place. Season 1 was still the time when Science Team was a strong shield resistance buff. Transfer Shield Strength and Auxillary to Dampeners were useless. Shields didn't get shield resistance from shield power, Emergency Powers cycled differently (and I don't think EPtS granted shield resistance). And so much more. I think about the only thing that didn't change at all was that Aux2Batteries was and still is useless.

I do not expect any of your predictions come true. The majority of a ship's power still comes from the naked BO powers it has. Sure, skills improve them, sometimes notably, but not enough to make a fundamental difference on a tactical level.

And it can't be repeated often enough, it seems: We're not losing 25 % skill points. The skills have different cost than before (and I am not just talking about the new scale). Tier 3 to Tier 5 skills are now cheaper than they were before. So you have 25 % less skill points. But you also need to spend something like 15 % less to have the same space build than before!