Captain
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 636
It's long been known that of the three captain types, Engineering has the worst set of powers, largely because none of them really stack up compared to tac or sci powers. Don't get me wrong, as an engineering captain I couldn't live without miracle worker... but the rest of my powers?



ehhh.... I barely notice them.


Well Cryptic has at least shown that they're willing to do some passes on content that needs improvement, so I'd definitely like to see them do a pass on engineering abilities.

With that in mind, I thought I'd make at least one suggestion on some improvements they could make.


1. Miracle worker should be like, an anti-subnuc as far as powers go. It should clear *all* debuffs in addition to hits heal.


2. Nadion Inversion, as is, is largely useless. It'd be nice to see it, idk, work like RSP with regard to energy drain, and actually reverse drains.


3... idk, some improvement to engineering fleet maybe.
Captain
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 750
# 2
11-27-2012, 05:27 AM
RSF should be like RSP as a captain power, lasting twice as long as regular RSP 3. Right now it's an ultra lame shield heal and slight damage resist. It should provide damage immunity, for crying out loud. APA is practically a beefed up version of APO 3, so why not do the same for RSF?
Commander
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 346
# 3
11-27-2012, 05:30 AM
Tbh, all 3 careers have a some very weak abilities: Tactical Initiative (Space) is pretty worthless, Photonic Fleet makes little difference and most Eng abilities are pretty good when active but are on too long recasts.
Nadion Inversion is one of those: when it's up, it's very nice... but it's only up for 40s every 3 minutes.
One day, I should try to rework them all into something that's more useful, more consistent and more thematical. I'm just reluctant to do it because: it's Cryptic's job!
Captain
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 750
# 4
11-27-2012, 05:49 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by quiscustodiet View Post
I'm just reluctant to do it because: it's Cryptic's job!
And they wouldn't even listen to you anyway if you did a good job of it.
Empire Veteran
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 6,313
# 5
11-27-2012, 07:08 AM
[quote]
Quote:
Originally Posted by quiscustodiet View Post
Tbh, all 3 careers have a some very weak abilities: Tactical Initiative (Space) is pretty worthless
Not for a Tactical Toon. That TI gives me a much lower CD on all my Tac (non-captain) abilities when I use it. Couple it with ATB or PO and you can get CDs so low its almost sinful.

Quote:
Photonic Fleet makes little difference
I agree with this but how useful can a photonic fleet be? Its not like they are real.


Quote:
Nadion Inversion is one of those: when it's up, it's very nice... but it's only up for 40s every 3 minutes.
It does seem a bit longish though FOMM and SNB have a 120 second CD, TI has a 180 second CD, so maybe its a balancing mechanic to keep Players from having continual uptime on Captain abilities?
He who laughs last thinks slowest.
Career Officer
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 3,390
# 6
11-27-2012, 08:02 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by fulleatherjacket View Post
RSF should be like RSP as a captain power, lasting twice as long as regular RSP 3. Right now it's an ultra lame shield heal and slight damage resist.
RSF adds 30% shield resistance, to everything. That's not a slight damage resist.

It's also on a 90s CD, and has 1/3rd up time and stacks with your other resistances.



Quote:
Originally Posted by quiscustodiet View Post
Tactical Initiative (Space) is pretty worthless...
Tactical Initiative is never worthless.

In a hybrid escort, or ship low on overall Tac slots it's extremely useful for burst use of powers.

It's probably not noticeably useful if you fly a defiant or patrol Escort and only care about yourself - but even then it's a self + 4 allies power which is where it's huge power really is (buffing allies).
Commander
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 346
# 7
11-27-2012, 08:31 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by bitemepwe View Post
Not for a Tactical Toon. That TI gives me a much lower CD on all my Tac (non-captain) abilities when I use it. Couple it with ATB or PO and you can get CDs so low its almost sinful.
But you can't plan around it.

- In a Ship with few Tac stations, you get little mileage simply because you don't have many Tac abilities; and some of them have to be relied upon, so you have to be able to rely on max uptime.

Example:
Star Cruiser: only 1 Lieutenant Tac station.
You want TT with max uptime, so:
Option 1: TT1, TT2
Option 2: TT1+Conn Officer(s), something else (TS2/THY2/BFAW2/BO2)

If you go with option 1, Tactical Initiative does absolutely nothing for you; if you go with option 2, you get +12.5% uptime from a single ability.
That's not a huge effect, especially compared with the stronger abilities like APA, Subnuke or Sensor Scan.


- In a Ship with a lot of Tac stations (any Escort), the system encourages you to double up on them for max uptime rather than get a variety of abilities, so Tactical Initiative doesn't really give you anything you didn't already have.
Example: any standard C/LC Tac Escort: 2x TT1, 2-3 CRF/CSV, 2-3 Attack Patterns.

TT1: same as above, reaches max cycle without Initiative=> no effect.
Attack Patterns: with 2-3 you reach max cycle without Initiative=> no effect.
CRF/CSV: you reach max cycle, but typically are able to use a higher-tier version more often=> some effect, but not much.
All in all, this case is even worse than the above.


Why not replace a CRF/CSV or Attack Pattern for Torpedo or Beam abilities and have Initiative affect both? Because it's not worth it for something that's only up 45s every 3 minutes. In fact, that'd only weaken the build.



- Somewhere in the middle, Tactical Initiative is more useful. On already very strong Ships with universal slots (the epitome of which is the Vesta), Tactical Initiative does provide more use.
Basically, it only really helps Ships that have/can get 4-5 Tac slots. 6+ and it start being overkill, 3- and it has little effect, due to how the Bridge Officer Ability system is set up.
Empire Veteran
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 6,313
# 8
11-27-2012, 08:57 AM
[quote]
Quote:
Originally Posted by quiscustodiet View Post
But you can't plan around it.
Yes you can though you are right its usefulness dwindles on non-tactical ships but even on a ship with only 2 Tac slots its helps if your build is designed for speed of Power turn-a-round.

TI is a important part of an escort alpha strike and is the first power that should be hit when one lines up thier strike.
TI + ApA + CRF + HY + ApO + TF + iether Photonic Officer or hoping for the Proc of ATB1.
One one move I have buffed and made sure my Buffs are on thier lowest cooldowns.

Under the old TI/PO build concept this was especially true. Here is an old response from BigRedJedi that helped me to understand better at that time and as far as I know it still has relevance;

Quote:
TI and PO both affect a power's Recharge, but cannot affect their global cooldown.

What does this mean, you ask?

Well, let's take Tactical Initiative, for example. Fully skilled (and, since my easiest reference is one of my Escorts, which also has the AEGIS Engine), TI sets the Recharge of all Tactical BOff powers to 47% of their normal Recharge (i.e. multiplies their Recharge time by .47), so how does this affect powers?

Let's look at a few examples:
1 Attack Pattern Beta: Has a 30-second Recharge and a 15-second Global Cooldown; so, if I take TI's effect, APB will cooldown in 14.1 seconds; however, the Global Cooldown is hard and fast, thus, even though the power might cool down a little faster than 15 seconds, the absolute soonest that I could re-activate APB (even this same copy) would be 15 seconds after activating the power the first time.
2 Attack Pattern Delta: Has a 45-second Recharge, and a 30-second Global Cooldown; thus, the same situation, as with APB, would apply... With TI active, APD would cool down in 21.15 seconds, but the soonest I could re-activate the power would be 30 seconds after the first activation.

Photonic Officer works exactly the same way, although PO's cooldown reductions are not nearly as substantial as TI's, but they apply to ALL of your BOff powers, not just Tactical ones.

Okay, then what does that really benefit me?

Well, for TI, especially, what happens if you are a Tac Officer in a Cruiser? At best, you have 3 Tactical BOff powers. Conventional wisdom would say, take 2 copies of your primary, preferred damage-boosting ability, and (most likely) a copy of Tactical Team. While that is likely the most efficient use of powers for non-Tactical Captains, the use of TI opens up the possibility of swapping out one of your paired abilities and adding a third, different Tactical ability to the mix, but still be able to get cyclic rotations on their usage.

For example, if I wanted to run both Beams and Torpedoes on a Cruiser, I would have to decide (especially if I want the added tanking ability of Tac Team) whether I want to run cycled Torpedo powers, or cycled Beam powers. Knowing that I have TI, however, means that for 45 seconds, every 3 minutes (or, the average duration of a heavy engagement in PvP), I can run one copy of both a Beam and a Torpedo power, and not lose the ability to rotate the skills.

Photonic Officer's flexibility, in applying to ALL BOff powers, works similarly well on other classes of ship, an Escort might be able to have a little more flexibility with Engineering powers, for example, or a Science vessel with its Engineering or Tactical powers.

So, to answer your question, TI is as far from worthless as it gets, since you get it as a Tactical Captain for free, not from a BOff, and you should use it at the start of every Alpha Strike that you have it available.

Photonic Officer, on the other hand, is a little more situational, but many ships can get great usage out of it (particularly the Sci-focused Cruiser and Escorts, along with Science Vessels themselves). As far as PO3 goes, it probably does 'overkill' on the amount of cooldown reduction, but it allows a little more flexibility for a ship, in keeping those Lt. Commander-slots free, especially if you prefer to use Heals (HE3 or TSS3, for example) in those positions.

Hope that helps,
-Big Red
He who laughs last thinks slowest.

Last edited by bitemepwe; 11-27-2012 at 09:00 AM.
Career Officer
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 2,300
# 9
11-27-2012, 08:58 AM
If you don't like Nadion Inversion, you're not really using it right. Its power drain resistance lets me fire a 7 or 8 beam broadside at 125 power for the duration... NI's long cooldown is its only drawback, but with DEM and the doff that buffs it I effectively have two Nadion Inversions.

And some of the engineering kit powers, with doff buffs, are incredible. I like playing an engineer.
Commander
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 346
# 10
11-27-2012, 09:26 AM
[quote=bitemepwe;6811911]
Quote:

Yes you can though you are right its usefulness dwindles on non-tactical ships but even on a ship with only 2 Tac slots its helps if your build is designed for speed of Power turn-a-round.

TI is a important part of an escort alpha strike and is the first power that should be hit when one lines up thier strike.
TI + ApA + CRF + HY + ApO + TF + iether Photonic Officer or hoping for the Proc of ATB1.
One one move I have buffed and made sure my Buffs are on thier lowest cooldowns.

Under the old TI/PO build concept this was especially true. Here is an old response from BigRedJedi that helped me to understand better at that time and as far as I know it still has relevance;
I do use it first before an Alpha strike.
And that huge post merely explains how the ability works, knowledge of which my explanation above should've demonstrated...

Now that the patronising is out of the way, a summation of the relevant points:
1. Alpha/"burst" isn't everything. "Burst damage" is for kids who like to watch big numbers, DPS is for killing stuff.
In the end, the best (pure) DD isn't the one that had the highest screenshot-number, it's the one that parsed highest.
So, recast is extremely important and average performance a better assessment method than peak performance, save for fringe cases.


2. We already cycle everything.
Come on, you're a pvper, if you ran into someone with only 1 copy of TT1 (and no Conn Officers), you'd laugh at him.
Yet, that's what your quote suggests: single copy of TT1 and relying on Initiative to cycle it. It works... a quarter of the time.

I'm not saying the ability doesn't do anything (unless you're in the exampled Star Cruiser above and pick Option 1), I'm saying its impact is much lower than what first glance would have you believe.
Using it on others yields the same results as on oneself: 3 stations or less: little effect; 6 stations of more: mostly overkill.
Even Go Down Fighting will have a bigger impact (+6.25% DPS at cap).
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