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Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 1,063
# 11
12-03-2012, 05:49 AM
Originally Posted by admgreer View Post
I am A TAC captian who Flys Fleet Defiant, Fleet MVAE, and a JEM Bug. The Bug being my go to ship. And I do very, very well in PVE and in PVP if a have a even somewhat good PUG group with me. Here is my Build and training spec:


As you can see, WEP, SHIELDS, and HULL are full up and with other passives and DOFF anf BOFF skills my cannons and beam do very well. But I want to play in a Cruiser for a change. So I went and got the Fleet Excelsior.
I put TT1/FAW2/BO3 for the TAC skills and E-power to shields 1, RSP 1, E-power to shields 3, Aux to structural 3

I Put 4 XII Polorized Diruptor beam arrays in the back and 3 XII Polorized Dual beam arrays and 1 Fleet XII Quantum in the front.

TAC consoles: 3 XII purple Disruptor tac consoles and 1 XII purple Zero point chamber,
Eng Consoles: 1 EPS XII purple, 2 Neutronium XII purple and 1 Monotonium XII purple.
SCI Consoles: 1 XII purple Field Gen, 1 Borg Console.

And I cant kill jack. I know I am spoiled in the Bug being able to kill thing in a few seconds but this boat took like a full min just to get a Gen to %10 in infected Elite. What is wrong here It's just not dishing out and damage. Sure I can take some shots and Tank a little but what fun is that I like to be able to dish out some damage, Are curisers just made for ENg captians? Do I need to respec for Torp skill and become a Torpedo boat? Some advice would be wonderful.
I captain mostly cruisers with my tac, and I have a lot more fun with him in those than escorts, and probably a bit more fun than my engineer in his cruisers. The thing is that a cruiser is about sustained DPS, not burst DPS. You aren't going to be zooming in and making alpha strikes, you're going to sit there, get shot, ignore it, and destroy your opponent by outlasting him.

I would suggest the following:

* Get a fourth disruptor booster console and ditch the torp booster.

* 3 arrays, 1 torp, fore and aft. More than 6 arrays and you're probably gimping your weapon power, even if it's maxed out.

* With a cruiser I typically do a cycle of TT1, EPtS2/3 (x 2), EPtW1 (x 2), A2SIF3. Note that I use one copy of TT1, but use purple Conn DOffs to cut down the cooldown time so it's like I had two of them. This will strengthen your shields, your weapon output, and give you consistent hull resistance. Note that EPtW can help beams (and only beams) even if it's at over 125 power, or so says the forums.

* Dump the EPS console. Put in more armor, an RCS console, or something otherwise more useful (I am aware of the mantra "cruisers aren't meant to turn," well if they weren't meant to turn they also wouldn't have engines and would be called "starbases"). I would also dump BO3, although some swear by it. I'd put an attack pattern power in there.

* Attack pattern alpha is your friend, use it early and often.

* Do NOT make a cruiser a torpedo boat. A cruiser can do a LOT of things, but a torpedo boat isn't one of them, unless you want to see all of the ship's limitations and none of its advantages in their full glory. I may scoff at the "cruisers can't turn" mantra, but even I am not so mad as to attempt a torp boat in a cruiser.

* Because an Excelsior is the most agile Fed cruiser, you might consider a cannon build, but that obliterates your broadsiding ability (you ARE broadsiding, I trust?), although it does give you the ability to smelt things sitting in front of you. It's also agile enough that you could probably get away with one (note - ONE) DBB up front.

* I am iffy on your armor setup; part of me wants to say to ditch the monotanium for something else entirely, part of me wants to say only two neutronium consoles are needed due to diminishing returns, part of me says it's fine as-is. Consider these possible reconfigurations, but don't go below two neutronium consoles unless you like turning your nice, thick cruiser armor into cardboardium alloy.

* Be aware that cruiser tactics are just plain different than escorts. You'll need a bit of patience, you'll need to be used to flying in circles, you'll need to broadside, and you also need to know what enemies to ignore. This will take some experience.

* If you do a respec, boost the Aux Performance skill to at least 3 to help with A2SIF3. You may also consider bumping up Impulse Thrusters (better turning/impulse use), boosting electro-plasma systems (help you get the most out of the Emergency Power abilities), and reducing Warp Core Potential (you don't even get a single point out of the last three ranks of it, IMO 6 is the optimum for almost any captain).

* Finally, make sure your power setup is right. The classic "attack" setup (weapons 100, shields 50, engines 25, aux 25) works pretty well for me. This is different if you're running a cruiser as a support ship, though, but as a tac you're probably not going to be doing that.

Good luck. I'll post more if I can think of anything else.

Last edited by red01999; 12-03-2012 at 05:52 AM.
Join Date: Oct 2012
Posts: 289
# 12
12-03-2012, 06:53 PM
I got the 1st excelsor from Exploration points back in the day so I just spent 1 fleet module. I have 8 respec tokens so I need to do some respecing to get the cruisers abilities up to snuff and some Boff retraining. So no Dual Beam banks in the front? Just use all beam arrays and torps?
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 214
# 13
12-03-2012, 10:09 PM
I recently had a very cruiser-affirming experience myself. I am an engineer in the Regent, and I run a technician battery build. I use 7 beams with the wide angle quantum along with fire at will, torp spread 2, and APB2.

First of all, I have to say that it feels absurdly powerful (for a cruiser). The burst damage of FAW combined with torp spread (all at the same time thanks to the wide-angle) can handily destroy BoP waves in CSE or probes in KASE in one volley, which is immensely satisfying and gives it great utility where other cruisers would spend too much time whittling things down.

Anyway, I recently carried a team through to victory in an STF in a way that I believe would not have been possible with any other ship. We were in KASE. One player was an AFK leecher and another left, leaving only 3 players, and one of those 3 was in a poorly equipped science vessel which had trouble doing enough damage to even stop the initial 2 probe waves let alone 4 after the transformers were down. On the other side was a mediocre escort with apparently no ambitions beyond shooting down his own probes. So it fell on me to handle almost all the probe duty on my side and destroy the gate.

Luckily my aux2batt build meant that FAW and torp spread were going off very frequently. The sheer AOE power of the setup allowed me to outright destroy most of the probes, or damage them enough for the science vessel, without ever taking focus off the gate. I managed to destroy the gate without letting any more through and then repeat the same process on the other side, except then with spheres pounding me while the other two took their time clearing them.

After that was the problem of Donatra. I'm sure many of you understand how unbreakable her shields can seem with an under-manned and underpowered team. If I had been in an escort here, we would have been utterly doomed. She would have popped us in rapid succession and we would never have maintained enough damage to get anywhere. Luckily I was flying a threat control tank, and I was able maintain aggro and keep myself alive for what seemed like 10 minutes while the three of us slowly pounded down her shields and hull.

That I was flying the Regent, and not any other ship in the game, is the only reason we won that match. I do not believe even the excelsior can match this ships performance, as the wide-angle torpedo spread combined with fire at will is a significant factor in burst damage potential, and no other ship save the oddy has enough tactical space for all of tac team, FAW, torp spread and an attack pattern.
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 1,063
# 14
12-04-2012, 01:24 AM
Originally Posted by admgreer View Post
I got the 1st excelsor from Exploration points back in the day so I just spent 1 fleet module. I have 8 respec tokens so I need to do some respecing to get the cruisers abilities up to snuff and some Boff retraining. So no Dual Beam banks in the front? Just use all beam arrays and torps?
Personally, that's what I'd recommend.

With an Excelsior, though, you have a bit more flexibility. But IMO it isn't worth it - except you MIGHT consider a single DBB up front. Some might disagree with me and it WILL weaken certain parts of your firing arc, but it will boost the strength of your forward arc.

That said, this is all IMO, your mileage may vary.

As a note, it is possible to have a build that accommodates both cruisers and escorts well. That's what I do, although your performance may be slightly below what you would get if you did extensive minmax, but I wouldn't want to do that as it would be too constricting.

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