OK, a few weeks ago during the sale I bought the Advance Heavy Cruiser Retrofit (Excelsior Retro). I was mostly curious because many people have said it's something of a successor to the Assault Cruiser. This did not sit well with me, considering it's an ancient ship and the AC is the Enterprise-E, which is probably my favorite Enterprise ever.
And now that I've tried the Excel-R out I kinda like it. Not as tough as the AC, but it's pretty good. However, at least on my tactical officer, it seems like the Excel is particularly helpful. But this breaks my brain in terms of emersion, and, frankly, I like the AC better for several reasons that have nothing to do with gameplay mechanics.
However, being the practical sort, I tend to wander towards functionality. As such, can anyone put up a good argument for why I should stick with the Assault Cruiser for my tac's main ship? He'll get the Odyssey when he reaches VA (and a couple escorts, as well), but even on my current VA engineer the Assault Cruiser tends to come out more often than the Odyssey, so I'd like a good argument as to why to keep the Assault Cruiser on as my "flagship" for my tac instead of sticking it to gather dust in mothballs.
So far as I can tell the Excelsior:
- Has advanced transwarp (very handy, though just for convenience)
- Has a Lt. Cmdr tac slot (which I can take advantage of being a tac via training), giving access to Attack Pattern Omega 1.
- Has no Lt. Cmdr Eng slot (which is a bit of a problem, running the Dragon Build, but not insurmountable by substituting one EPtS3 for EPtS2).
- Better turn rate.
This is in exchange for the Assault Cruiser:
- Has a Lt. Cmdr Eng slot, making it a bit tougher of a nut to crack.
- Has a Lt. and Ensign tac slot, making it a tiny bit easier for an engineer to train up.
Is there anything I'm missing? I have heard the AC is due for a refit, but I doubt that's for at least a few months, probably more. So I'd appreciate any thoughts on this and arguments to help out my AC in terms of "winning" this little argument, or at least being more competitive. Thanks!
Anyway, I was going to say, Excelsiors still probably see servive, so seeing one running around isnt too out of canon, and a lot of admirals picked excelsiors as their flagships as well
I picked mine over my sovy just for the turn rate, and she still looks pretty nice. I run 2 quantums front, and 2 rear, so i really need that turn rate. High yeild 3 is nice, with spread 2. I just love flinging quantums at ships. If i were to use the sovy, I'd probaby go more tank heavy with 7 beams and 1 launcher on the bow.
I've been flying an AC for a long time now in (E)STFs and can pretty much say she's a solid ship.
In another discussion thread I sort of laid down my flying style (fire support and max team heals) and we went over literally each and every c-store ship there existed to see what was the best purchase.
In the end although the Excelsior was not in the initial list, it was the only viable replacement for the Assault Cruiser for the following reasons:
- Lt. Cdr. Tactical slot
- Faster turnrate
And then it struck me - paying 1600cp for a slightly better ship wasn't worth it at all. I ended up not buying anything at all but maximizing the use of the AC. I made it fly faster, hit harder, and out-tank a tac cube all at once by optimizing the build.
If I really wanted additional tactical slots, I'll get a fleet escort. I use cruisers for the extreme amount of engineering boff powers.
So for a paltry sum of some spare refined dilithium and about 200cp, I got an excellent ship that I enjoy playing in STFs and excels in almost any role a cruiser could play.
If I want a more specialised ship performance then I will simply swap out certain components and a duty officer, and convert a fast battlecruiser into a armoured rapid fire cannon brawler for max short range DPS.
In the end, its the captain that makes all the difference - those $25 flagships don't interest me because the stats are just minor improvements from a solid AC setup that doesn't have problems keeping up with (E)STFs except on CSE where the extreme DPS requirement for the Optional means I'm building a fleet escort tonight just for that map.
In short, I agree with this:
Originally Posted by thepantsparty
The reason to use an AC over an Excelsior retrofit is that the AC is free (if it's the first ship you buy at RA) or $5 (at current dil:cp rates), while the Excelsior costs $20.
An Excelsior is not 4 times the ship, but it is 4 times the price!