In my experience, it is not hard to gank the Federation 9 times out of 10. The major reason is of course some of what you mention, but then again that is what you get in PUGs (and my experience is the Klingons never have to PUG, there is always enough qualified players to form a group).
The main reason I see the Federation dying under my guns is they loose the first ship. As soon as they loose the first ship, and that ship spawns way back in ninevah, the rest of the feds start to fall in short order. The main Klingon tactic that most group leaders I work with follow is: stay cloaked until the Feds break up. Eventually: 10 minutes, whatever, they will break up a little. Then you gank one Federation ship. After that, the Feds are sheep to the slaughter. 1 on 1 their ships do not do enough damage to take out our ships (except the Escort, and they die first like a Magic User in DnD) while you can easily take down their heaviest. And you are twinked way better than them. They have to work hard to get their good stuff, you just have to PvP a few times and you have it pretty quickly.
To test this theory, I played the other night Feds. In 10 matches, we lost 9. Some were lost because PUGs had one bad member (violating the never loose a ship mantra for feds). Some were lost because someone just got bored in the long time of waiting for battle to get joined and tried to scare up some action, or chased a single uncloaked ship.
The main trick to a Fed was to abandon groups, which is neither a good policy nor fair, but the way to go. You drop in to the system and see if your feds form up. If they do not, you blast out and find another battle. I found that if I did that 10 or 15 times you would eventually find a PUG that would form up without pleading and shouting.
Once they form up, you need to be set on a long wait. Playing a Klingon I have had my team wait for long enough for me to complete an entire chapter of a book before engaging the Feds. The Feds simply have to find the best spot and park it. Then it is a waiting game.
Once in a while I will find the best of both worlds, which I enjoyed most as a Klingon. The big dogfight in the sky where ships are engaging in 1 on 1 and 2 on 1 across the sky, mano a mano. But this simply happens so rarely I would not wait for it if I played Federation PvP.
Mostly, in all this messing around, I learned it is a lot more fun to PvP as my Gorn. Better PUGs, happless Feds, and 9 to 1 win loss ratios. Mostly, I think when the Feds quit showing up there will have to be Gorn versus Klingon and the like to make up for the loss, but it is still fun.
Your beam weapons have a wide arc and broadside to the side. Your enemy's weapons are frontal arc. If you are 1 vs 1, close on him. He can't shoot you if he's trying to get away, and you can hit him with both weapons if he's above or below you.
torpedos are wasted on shields, they do almost no damage to shields.
beam overcharge is usually not a good idea, because it drains weapon power causing your dps to drop
aux power helps turning rate, healing effects, detection, tractor beam. My usual power setting for dogfights is 100% weaponpower and the rest in aux.
the single best power to kill kdf is focus fire, tractor beam is also good.
tractor beam has a defensive use for feds, in that your enemy mostly has frontal fire, so tractor can prevent them from doing damage as well as expose their damaged shields
you might be better off with engineering team over emergency power to shields for your engineer bo. eps ranked up can drop every 45 seconds and can be used on a teammate, and grants a power level buff
shield batteries are good
evasive maneuvers can be used offensively as well as defensively if you are focused fire, fly behind the kdf. the biggest defense you have as fed is position.
cannons have a big damage roloff > 5k. a focused fire person who lives long enough to put distance between himself and his attackers will be taking half or less damage
t1 pvp presently is probably the hardest for feds. That may change, but it hasn't changed yet.
before you see the kdf, have every teammate target one of your team members. as soon as he detects a target, everyone fires and they automatically assist him. when that target dies, target the teammate again - there's a hotkey for this.
Just for clarification, when you say "One in, all in. If one of your squad mates opens up, everyone opens up." do you mean that everyone should open up on the SAME target?
Thanks for the tips!
Usually that is the best tactic.
Additionally, if you notice a team member a tiny bit away (out of range still) and klingons attacking, you should go in, everyone should. If the team member flew FAR away (ranger-like) and is getting beat on, chances are it's best to let them die as they'd be dead by the time you got there and you'd be 1 ship short in the engagement.
The only stratagy I can give for PvP is for esscorts... there are three basic rules when planning stratagy as an esscort
1) we have weak ass sheilds but heavy fire power, which means, do not stray far from your support in combat, stay where they can see and hell your sheilds to keep you pumping out the damage. And keep your bum moving... the dumbest mistake an esscort can make is trying to tank even in the slightest.
2) an escort should only fly off ahead of the fleet if they know the fleet is just close enough to fill the Klingons full of plasma in a few seconds of your own engagement... basicaly your the dummy to draw their fire so they don't relize what's behind you.
3) the only time a escort should ever go full impulse without the fleet is if they are playing the expendable scout at the begining of the game... and only one should play this role. The point is to fly right into the enemy and see what kind of ships they have befor you die, and don't kid yourself cause you will die, then once you respon report what you saw to the rest of the fleet so they can plan appropreitly. Just don't expect to be even close to the top player of the game.
Those are the only three rules one must learn and abide by. that and every fleet should always have one designated scout... basicaly whoever is suicidal enough to do something that stupid. Also, a good idea for the fleet, stay at the respawn point when your scout heads out on it's mission... this way your not short a ship later.
Oh and one last thing for the mine fans... Don't spam mines, while yes they are good for damage they also can cause alot of problems, only use mines once the fighting has engaged and use them stratigicly... ex: mines make good distractions... especialy if they are doing more damage to the enemy then other weapons, two: mines are good anti fighter... I have found 9 times out of 10 the mines will target the fighters first. And 3, mines are a support, the best way is if your heavy tank is getting thrashed lay a set of mines near or infront of the thrasher, generaly by the time they relize what just happend the mines are already armed and locked for the attack.
Don't mine spam, mine spaming is annoying and gives us professional miners a bad rap.
I am an escort, I lay mines tacticaly and it seems to draw me alot of attention in regular non pvp combat... while being a tier one escort means by having mines I am relatively defenseless in the back, it does not mean that is where you want to be, because I don't spam so getting behind me is usally setting yourself up to get blasted with quantam mines.
Some good advices.. I play alot of pvp.. depending upon the maps, yes we should move as a group, one good strategy, from someone playing a science officer and ship, it use us as the prey - dependent upon the ship set up, some science ship are more about helping allied and healing focus. which should stay in the middle of the group, and there are others like myself who are more about ECW/ECM (electronic counter warfare/measures) where their set up it more about exposing the cloak ship and providing additional DPS. .
The 2nd worst thing Kling do not like after escorts are science ships, especially ones that can expose them before they are ready, drain their shields, hold them and pin point their locations. Thus, one strategy is placed ECM/ECM science ships, all around outside escorts and cruisers, where we are either on top, below in the outer circle of the group, moving all around the group in and out, using our sweeping sensors about 5 km from the group
An Ideal group setting I think should consist of, depending upon the pvp size instance should consist of 4 science ships, (2 ECW type science ship to patrol the outer ring, top, bottom, left, right, next come 3-4 escorts, after that, 2 healing science ships, then the rest like 3-5 cruisers as the nexus.