Interested in peoples takes on wether or not to rank up the ship tiers as we go? I know the old wisdom was yes.. but I see and hear more and more that people aren't ranking up all the chosen ship classes... on the way up to VA?
I'm curious are Tetryon Beams worth it or not? seems to me the random proc of the phasers should happen as often as Tetryon beams dropping sheilds... and for far less skill points
I assume you are talking about ranking up the ship skills and not actually getting a new ship. I would say that at least putting 7 points in the ones you get full bonuses out of (1st, 2nd, and last tiers?) wouldn't be a bad idea. And if you PvP then the other tiers are a good idea as well. After all, more hull = more time alive.
As for tetryons, there are differing opinions on the matter. Personally I don't think they're worth it at end game because the amount of shields drained is pretty insignificant at that point. I much prefer the chaos that phasers proc causes or the debuffs from disruptors.
IIRC, the way it goes (for escorts at least) is the LTC Escort skill provides full bonus to all escorts. Heavy Escort (COM) and Tactical Escort (CAPT) provide the full boost to that ship class, and half to all subsequent escorts, e.g. Captain Generic is flying a Defiant, and has 9 points each in Escort, Heavy Escort and Tactical Escort. He receives the full bonus from Escort, half the bonus from Heavy Escort, and the full bonus from Tactical Escort. If he bumps up to a Prometheus, then he gets the full bonus from Escort, half bonus from Heavy Escort and Tactical Escort, and the full bonus from his Advanced Escort skill.