Tactical Officer and the Escort ship tips
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Join Date: Jun 2012
08-15-2012, 10:24 AM
First off, kit choice and ship have nothing to do with each other. Your kit is your ground equipment, and your ship is for space.
Second, the kit choice is ultimately up to you. However, if you want stealth I recommend the Operative kit. However, ideally you should collect all of the kits (at least once you can use Mk X purple kits, anyway), since you can swap them at-will. You can determine if a kit you want has the power you want by hovering your mouse over the kit. The power you're looking for is, if I recall correctly, Stealth Module. I THINK (but am not sure) only the Operative kit offers the Stealth Module. However, I could be wrong about this, especially since the kits change a few times as they go up in level (for instance, the photon grenade kit becomes 'grenade satchel' later, or something like that).
In terms of what loadout you want, with an escort you are probably going to want to mount dual cannons or dual heavy cannons in front, and turrets in the back, probably with a single torpedo launcher fore (photon or quantum). As you're a Federation player it will probably be easiest for you to get your hands on phaser-based weapons and support equipment, so go for that. As an escort, your weapon fire arc is very concentrated for maximum DPS and you will need to rely on mobility to make this work, so be sure you face your enemy head-on as much as possible, and be sure you're ready to get away ASAP, because an escort's armor is pretty pathetic compared to a cruiser, and unlike science ships it doesn't have much in the way of shields to make up for it. For a deflector I would strongly recommend a Positron Deflector, as they tend to have the best improvements for your shields (which helps, because most of the other deflectors concentrate on boosting other science stats). You MIGHT want Covariant or Resiliant shields (Covariant - high HP, low regen; Resiliant - lower HP, but absorb more damage per hit). However, I play my tac mostly on cruisers and only really went into escorts once he hit level 50, so I'm not sure how much level 50 and level 10-19 play differ in regards to cruiser strategy, particularly because of the lack of BOff slots for cannon-based abilities and lack of weapon slots.
For consoles, you will probably want energy-type specific damage boosters in the tactical slots (phaser relays, if you're using phasers). I would recommend for the science slots anything that boosts shield abilities, and failing that anything that helps out with sensors. Your engineering slot would probably do well with an armor console or an RCS console - the former will boost damage resistance and the latter will make your ship a little peppier in terms of turn rate.
For BOff powers, I would recommend that you consider Tactical Team, Torpedo High Yield, Torpedo Spread, and Cannon Rapid Fire. At your level I doubt Cannon Scatter Volley will do much good, and CRF is something that most high-level escorts are addicted to. Tactical Team both boosts damage output and automatically reallocates shields during its activation, and does so more quickly than you can with manual rebalancing or hitting the 'balance shields' option. Your engineering slot should probably go to either Engineering Team, Emergency Power to Shields, or Emergency Power to Weapons, depending on what you want most (hull repairs, shield repairs, or bursts of higher firepower). Most would likely advocate EPtW, but as I tend to be a cruiser player I tend to lean towards tanking abilities at times. For your science ability, Hazard Emitters is probably your best bet (hull repair and remover of certain debuffs, which at your level can be VERY dangerous, though I don't recall if you run into those all that much that early on).
However, one thing to note for BOff powers - although the "team" powers (tactical team, engineering team, science team) are highly effective and powerful, they are limited in that THEY SHARE COOLDOWNS. This can be a massive deal-breaker, so a lot of the time people just pick one or two and roll with them. I tend to pick up two copies of tactical team and rotate them, and when I have room I pick up a single copy of engineering team and use it in emergencies between cooldowns by breaking my rotation.
However, remember that you're early in the game, and ultimately what you're interested in is what you're going to be getting at about level 40+, so don't be too afraid to experiment and don't worry TOO much about messing up ship equipment. Most of the lower level ships you won't be using for too long, anyway.
Anyway this is all IMO; your milage may vary, and you would probably do well to ask for someone else's advice as well. Also, consult stowiki.org to verify the info I put up if you'd care to.
Last edited by red01999; 08-15-2012 at