Well we’ve all seen the requests EVERYWHERE for new T5 retrofits of a lower tier ships, and a good few of those requests have been granted, however there are still more than a few requests out there for more. So what do you do about it? Do we keep pressuring Cryptic to produce more ships and the special abilities to go with them or come up with a change that allows the most people to get what they want (i.e. 20+ smaller projects with increasing balance impacts vs. 1 larger project that clears pressure).
Towards that end I propose a Ship Refit System that allows players to put in a great deal of effort and move their loved lower tiered ships into the higher tiers in stages and being satisfactory to canon at the same time. I actually had this idea a while ago but I could never get around the problem of the special abilities that many people paid for through the C-Store, however since Heretic mentioned that there was the possibility of moving the majority of the special abilities to a console form, this can now be done without sending people who paid for their ships into a frenzy. My proposal is as follows:
-Canon is something that is sacred to us Trek fans, and for those of us who have been around long enough to remember the old forums and the extreme debates on which ships were superior to others (like Galaxy vs. Sovereign and Akira vs. Defiant), it can get very…..heated. So how do we use canon in favor of allowing ships up the ranks?
When it comes down to it, there are only a few systems and components of a ship that are not already in the ship interface that separate ships in terms of performance/superiority. Things like computer circuitry (duotronic vs. isoliner vs. bio-neural gel packs), or power generation (Warp Core class, and auxiliary generators), or hull armor, or sensor grid; beyond those Cryptic has already covered the rest through deflectors, shields, engines, and weapons (which we already upgrade as we can).
The modernized ship would then be basically on par with the current generation of craft; we’ve seen this throughout the last century, where peacetime governments can no longer afford the expense of a wartime navy so the process of mothballing was introduced. In this process a ship is preserved while not being at sea so that it can be reactivated and modernized in the event of war, a process that is much faster than building entirely new ships; a common example of this are the old American Iowa-Class Battleships that were built in the 1940s and then mothballed and reactivated 3 times over the course of 50 years in service, each time being modernized and put to sea.
-Modernizing a ship is not easy, but like I said above, it is easier to do than building a new one from scratch. The actual process of upgrading a ship would be an extension of the crafting system, schematics and the materials to make the upgrade parts, as well as using honor points as the needed currency for the final ‘click’ on the proverbial menu. Things like the modifiers and the base turn rates would not improve and be kept appropriately in-line with each tier upgrade, and the hull strength would be improved to be nearly that of the current generation (think 5-10ish% less). Additionally, and most importantly, the Bridge Officer layout would improve in line with the ship’s role (BoP/BC/Raptor and Escort/Science/Cruiser), with an option on how to go for the final tier (i.e. the final ensign slot).
The T5 retrofits that are currently in game would have their special abilities (or at least most of them) converted to console form, so that those people that bought their ships would have still paid for the special abilities on their ships.
While the basic system has its obvious benefits to the game’s community, the potential is there for expansion into specialized ships (like the lower tier carriers for Klingons) with give and take of ship stats, and the potential for altering Bridge Officer layouts to fit the needs/desires of the given Captain (not saying it has to happen, merely that it’s a potential expansion of the system). For example, if Klingon Captains wanted to refit their BattleCruisers with a hangar bay, they would have to give up a weapon slot and/or some maneuverability to accommodate it, the same would be true for Federation ship(s) if Cryptic opened that door to them.
In conclusion, this system would grant the community further opportunity to make this game their Star Trek by utilizing by flying around Alpha Quadrant in their favorite ships. I hope yall like the idea and have enjoyed the read, what do yall think?