I got my hands on a MK XII Tricobolt launcher. I thought, woohoo look out Borg. THen I actually used it. Yes, it does hella damage, but the fire rate is so slow it negates the benefits. And they are almost useless if the enemies shields are still up. They take forever to reload, they are slow enough that even a dimwitted Borg could shoot them down, and they just don't do enough damage to be worth it. Don't use tricobolt torpedoes. You will die between the time you fire the first and you fire the second. And you need to be point blank so they wont get shot down.
I use to use these regularly before I hit VA. I agree with your overall impression of them. However, using them is like playing 'chicken'... you need to get up close and personal while using your energy weapons (cannons/phasers, etc...) to wipe out the shields of the enemy and hit them (front and back) just as your literally on top of them. Packs a wallop and sends the ship reeling from the explosion. It takes a particularly play set but they can be a good emergency exit strategy in certain game play.
If playing a regular enemy contact game in sector space one tric will literally take out an entire ship with one hit (i.e. a Mirror Miranda class ship for instance). Using a Boff power will increase the mayhem.
I don't use them anymore myself but for for lower level players who can heal shields and hull relatively well its a great way of getting rid of the enemy, especially if you only have two weapon slots up front and two in the back! Food for thought.
Tricobalt mines are really really good. Why? Because when you drop 3 or 4 of the things you can do 100K damage and take out an enemy (and maybe several of his buddies) instantly. The minute-long reload time is fairly and playably offset by the tremendous power of the attack.
Tricobalt torpedoes are not really really good. In fact they aren't good at all. Why? Because they don't do 100K damage and take out an enemy instantly.
Either a weapon needs to be good at supplying steady damage output that wears a target down, or it needs to be good at delivering substantial precision hits. Tricobalt torpedoes don't do either of these things.
THY3 + Crit on a Tric Torp makes them less suck. But alas, having the two happen at the same time is not really that likely. So I agree with Momaw, just use tric mines. DPB3 + Crit + APA3 + FOMM = good times.
Tricobalt torps work great for me on my B'rel with a dedicated tricobalt build. My DPB3 tricobalt mines are the main damage dealers but since I am using all trico consoles I put 2 CrtH x3 tricobalt torps up front so I have something to do in between my mine laying every 30 secs. It hits as hard as a tricobalt mine with HY3, and spread can shoot multiple tricobalt torps at a time, its pretty good. It seems unimpressive if you aren't using it fully buffed up by a tac captain with all tricobalt consoles. It also 1 shots players sometimes if it crits to, great for kerrat in a all torp/mine brel to fire while cloaked.
since I am using all trico consoles I put 2 CrtH x3 tricobalt torps up front so I have something to do in between my mine laying every 30 secs. It hits as hard as a tricobalt mine with HY3,
Okay, but what you have to compare it to is Deployment Beta 2. If a HY3 tricobalt torpedo does as much damage as a mine, then DPB2 does 200% more damage with the same cooldown time and tactical slot. Yes, the torpedo has a better range, but the further away you shoot the slow-moving warhead the more likely that it will be shot down and the less control you have over the disposition of the target when it hits.
It seems unimpressive if you aren't using it fully buffed up by a tac captain with all tricobalt consoles.
Meanwhile I can get good mileage out of other torpedoes as a not-tactical captain with minimal buffs and infrastructure investment. Even for juiced up tacscorts, consider how much damage a quantum launcher can do if you specialize your entire ship into being a quantum torpedo delivery platform.