We have a fleet that plays regularly and I have to say the biggest beef we all have, for one reason or another, is the lack of Z axis.
I hate having to spiral down to a drop while my team is off to the next combat. I hate the I cannot move directionally up or down without a prolonged navigational effort in what shoudl be zero gravity. I don't care about canon, it's not realistic and that's what is at issue.
It's been said before and I'll say it again. JMS hit the nail on the head when he designed his ships to actually look like they operate in Zero G environments and while one can argue that the Star Trek camera angle is relative, the ships all fly forward and make huge curving arcs to turn. I don't mind that so much but you are making excuses for poor initial design and using the excuse that it's canon is also weak. MMO crowds are notoriously not idiots ... well most of them and when it comes to understanding the basic laws of physics in a zero g environment, most of us are going to know that ships should not fly like they are in a f#$%&* atmosphere.
That said, you also don't have to make it quick. A slow ascend or descend is fine as long as you don't have to make some ridiculous red baron whirlpool maneuver to pick up what's just going to be an engine battery anyway.
Lastly, the game mechanic is simple. Cryptic did the initial design of City of Heroes which has flight and in that flight, to fly straight up, you hit space bar and to fly straight down you hit Z. (Or at least my keyboard was set up that way) and that was in atmosphere. There's simply no excuse to not make up and down directional movement available.
At max turn your ship tilts, it almost goes completetly sideways. Ya' know what happens when you stop? It fixes itself. HOW HARD IS IT TO DO THAT WHEN YOU GO STRAIGHT UP THEN PITCH "FLAT"?
You could easily have the ship automatically rotate to be level again once it becomes upside down.
Hell, +/-90' pitch does not mean you can go upside down.
I can't believe people don't understand how easily this could be modified to not f-up the current style of game play.
Words can not express how angry I am with the dev team for not being able to program this simple fix.
For the escorts and other DPS Ships having crazy maneuvers should be built into the ship. Attack pattern alpha means your f-cking ship should actually have an attack pattern that it flies.
The lack of creativity in this game makes me want to nerd rage on cryptic. I have a life time to do it with too.
I think it's as much an issue about that as it is about firing arcs, since are in 3-d as well. Also it would be damn annoying to flip upsidedown to avoid a certain attack and have to keep pressing the button to stay like this.