What I've been telling everyone who asks about buying the HEC is that season 6 is just around the corner, and we're going to be seeing a number of new ships and new retrofits. Waiting until you see all your options is highly advised!
well let me put it this way i have been grinding through elites the past month to get complete maco space set mark 12 playing with the armitage on first day i was abole to finish the cure on elite for the first time in a month and on the second day i got the prototype engine tech to complets my maco set the ship i was flying before was the fleet escort. a fun technique is to fly into amass of enemies with a perigrine escort unleash crv 2 and torpedo spread 2 with quantum torps then fire both point defense weapons to due massive damage and as you swing out hit hit with transphasic rapid fire torrps
I drank the Romulan ale I forked out the dough and bought this ship. I used ship in PVP and PVE. In pvp using the danubes tractor was useful against opponents but it was difficult keeping the pets on task and killing the enemy at the same time. My success in PVP was middling at best. I felt more at home with my MVAE were I usually clean house (having the extra shields and higher level tac boff skill is very useful). As per PVE and when i talk PVE I am talking about the cure, accords, and infected. I usually like running Omega III on all my builds but i had to change that line of thinking and switch to Beta III and Beta II while using 2 scatter shots I. I have to load Beta twice so that my so that the pets can do some potent damage, I have to say I have seen my pets do some nasty damage especially the advanced peregrines unloading micro quantums on hull (ah it makes a daddy proud). I found that in order to facilitate good use out of the extra tac slot i had to load up a torp upfront instead of running a straight DHC/turret build. This took a little getting use to. Switching to Beta and 2 high yields have changed my playing style in stf's a bit but its good. I hear a lot of people say that Flight officers are the way to go maybe this is true for pvp, but in my experience for stfs not so much the 30 second cool down was reasonable and since the borg live forever in stfs anyways and the tiny ships dont die unless the borgs go boom 30 seconds in stfs is reasonable. I use two purple conns, two projectile borg purples, and exocomp/redmatter.. I have to say I do very decent damage with 3x antiproton DHC and 3x rear turrets + Proton torp with 2 high yields.
There are three advantages two major and one minor to the Akira Tier 5:
-The major advantage is the Hanger bay with advanced peregrine fighters it helps you eat gates in sto's and your team mates will love you for the optionals, provided someone kills the probes and you have a science guy spamming gravity well or repulsars (the guys who play control do it so well). The tier 5 Akira eats gates and regular cubes on elite but not tac cubes (those are evil and wrong). The little guys will also help you finish Donatra and assault carrier once you get the hull exposed. .
-Another major advantage the Lt commander engineering gives you a lot of flexibility, I use aux to structural II but you can use aux to battery and recharge your bridge Boffs more quickly with space doffs. Or you can use engineering to increase your damage output it is a choice. Aux to struct II is better with a 15 second reload it give this escort more durability. On to the minor advantage.
-The Tac console they provide is usable and at full range 10k it can do some decent hull damage against gates and anything unshielded in stf's are usually the norm. But the cool down of 3 min which is very frustrating.
-50 extra crew helps a little in theory but really this is so minor that it is just foolish and not included.
Not everything is cool in Akira land however there are three major disadvantages over my free favorite the MVAE: (MVAM is not as good a freebie given at 40 the MVAE)
-The MVAE has three Sci consoles which translates into 1000 more shields through science Field generators . 1000 shields on MACO XII means alot of extra punihment the MVAE can take.
-Perhaps it is just me but the MVAE feels faster I love the 360 power slides i can pull off on it my power slides on the Akira feels more like 270's.
-the extra high ranking tac slot on MVAE meant I could put in Omega III instead of having to sack it for Akira.
-I have to say for the most part I am happy with the Akira. Playing alot of stf's meant i had dilithium to convert and spent $20 instead of $30 on Perfect world. I am happy I bought it.
Sure having to spec in photon torps high yield 1 two times has not been great and would have liked it if the one tac ensign was a science ensign but that would be pushing it. All in all a decent ship and a welcome addition to the escort lineup. Real good for stf's not so sure about pvp's it will add pet spam but it can be killed and it is not the fastest escort on the block, also expect to be a target because peeps hate da-noobes. So not so much for PVP but a solid yes for PVE specifically stf elite content. btw am a tactical officer hope this helps you guys. Could also work well for an engineering officer as well. Science not so sure on this ship.