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Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 1,256
# 37
01-30-2013, 01:02 AM
Alrighty Branflakes, you want a simple and direct posting of what needs fixing?

Boarding. Parties.

Even up to Boarding Party 3, this ability is instantly countered by tactical team 1, a power which 80% of ships run at least one of. Even with all the buffs, it is so easily countered and so difficult to actually benefit from as to be a complete waste of the skill, regardless of how many doffs you stack on it or what abilities they give it.

But let's compare the numbers with a similar power from a different discipline, shall we?

(disclaimer: All numbers taken from STOwiki)

Boarding Party 1, with no skill ranks beyond the first:

1 min, 40 second cooldown. (reduced by up to 60 seconds with full ranks)
Creates 3 shuttles which must survive their way to the enemy ship (this the *only* boff power which can be shot down)
Induces -10 crew from your total per shuttle (for a total of 30, although greater numbers are possible with doffs), although this is refunded if they return (which they will never do because any given ship has tac team 1 running, so they all die)
To target: 50% chance to disable a subsystem for 10 seconds.
To target: 75% chance to kill % crew per shuttle
To target: 50% chance to add delay to recharge timeof energy weapons, projectiles, engineering, or science abilities.

Note: In practice, these abilities take at least five, if not ten seconds to actually 'activate'- so for instance, the first shuttle hits the target. No systems will be disabled, no crew will be killed, and no powers will be delayed for at least five seconds, if at all.

Boarding party 1 has, effectively, a 50% chance to do nothing at all.

Countered by:

Tactical Team 1, 2, and 3
Engineering Team 1, 2, and 3
Transfer Shield Strength with transporter doff

Viral Matrix 1, with no skill ranks beyond the first:

1 min, 40 second cooldown. (reduced by up to 60 seconds with full ranks)
Disable one subsytem for 4 seconds (IIRC the length is increased with extra ranks)

Countered by:

Engineering Team 1, 2, and 3.

Viral matrix cannot be shot down, and can only be countered by one ability (engineering team) which is not run on all, or even a majority of ships. Viral matrix takes effect instantly, and has doffs which improve the breadth of its ability directly- whether adding an additional subsystem shutdown to take effect after the main one, or allowing it to spread, parasitically, to other nearby ships.

It is a simple, and very effective power which is widely used in pvp.

Contrast with boarding party, which, while has a greater 'apparent' breadth of ability by default, has so many counters, flaws, or faults that it is nearly entirely useful either in PVP or PvE.

It is my opinion that the power, while thematic, is in need of a complete and total reworking, from the ground up. If it continues in its current form, then it will remain an obscure and useless ability that many try because it seems quite cool, but all discard after finding out just how poorly implemented it is.

Some of those users will make posts on this very forum, or the boff powers forum about how badly implemented it is, especially in practical situations and given testing. Those threads will be commented on, briefly, but will eventually fall off the first page (usually within a day or two), and be ignored in totality by the devs and the players whom though they themselves desperately would like to see an improvement to the power understand that no one will ever read their threads, and a fix will never be forthcoming.

----> Edit inserted: An 'easy fix' to boarding party would be to make its effect instant, from the arrival of the first shuttle. This would, even with the omnipresence of tactical team, allow it to be of at least some use from the outset, rather than theoretical use eventually, but only if the enemy doesn't use one of three available ways to counter it.

Anyways, Aceton Beam 3's cooldown is too long, and in general Aceton Beam is ineffectual as an engineering power. Although deceptive in its seeming usefulness, due to claiming to neutralize an enemy ship's energy weapons output (but in practice doing no such thing). With half the cooldown, and a rework to actually do what it claims (or even to claim what it actually does), it would be a power that might actually be worth something.

Tactical team is too strong still. Aside from specific builds the basic reasons to run tactical team are independent of its rating.

Suggestions for improvement:

1. Tactical team can only repel boarding parties if you actually have any crew left.
2. Tactical team has a % cap of your total shields that it can re-distribute, which increases based on ranking. So for example. assuming you have 10,000 shields per facing, perhaps tactical team 1 can only distribute a maximum of 20%, or 2000 shields from one facing to another. Tactical team 2 can distribute a maximum of 40%, and tac team 3 of 60%. (or 80% depending on your increases)

Clearing boarders and redistributing shields (but mostly the latter) are the primary reasons anyone runs tactical team. Nobody cares about the extra damage boost it grants to energy and projectiles given other, more useful higher level powers.

Last edited by illcadia; 01-30-2013 at 01:25 AM.