The Nebula Class multipurpous starship has been described as the workhorse of the Federation, and with good reason: it's variable mission swap-out pods mean that the same ship can, with little down time, be respecialized towards any number of tasks.
The Tier 3 version, set as a Science ship, is by itself versitile enough to satisfy Escort and Cruiser roles as well, if not quite as well as more dedicated ships. It's a nice early taste of the grand potential of the Nebula Class.
The Tier 5 Nebula Class Research Vessel Retrofit is a fine continuation along these lines, and follows the first (and most obvious) of the three major ship roles: The improved sensors and subsystem targeting of a Science Vessel. It even comes with a costume varient in the Magellen Class.
This is all well and good, but where are the other mission pods?
Where is the Tier 5 Nebula Class Tactical Retrofit (drop the sensor console and subsystem targeting, improve the turning speed sleightly, and have mission pod mounted ability to use cannons)?
Where is the Tier 5 Nebula Class Flight Deck Cruiser (drop the sensor console and subsystem targeting for two hanger bays equipped with Peragrin Fighters, with the option to swap in a deployable Saber Class Escort)?
I know from playing on the I.K.S. side, that the Federation has pleanty of NPC cruiser captains perfectly willing to deploy Peregrin Fighters and Denube Runabouts at the drop of a hat, and a Nebula Class varient is the perfect option for a Vo'Quv counterpart. Smaller Federation Flight Deck Cruisers can come later, if at all, but it's not like the models for the small craft don't exist.
Seriously, where are these Nebula Class varients?
On a more cosmetic note, how about a Nebula Class Mission Pod Costume Pack?
Magellen Sensor Pod - to be able to get this one part of the Magellen set early.
Tactical Pod - same reasoning as the Magellen Sensor Pod.
Colony Pod - perhaps a mini-saucer in appearance.
Hospital Pod - probably not too different from the colony pod, but with medical symbols?
Flight Deck Pod - same reasoning as the Magellen Sensor Pod.
Shuttle Pod - a less agressive looking Flight Deck Pod.
Marine Pod - a more agressive looking flight deck pod!
Mini nacelle pair.
A third main Nacelle (similar to the one on the Galaxy Dreadnaught)
An AWACS Pod.
Ship Tender Pod
As a costume pack, none of these have to actually do anything, but it would be nice to be able to swap out mission pods on a ship class for which swappable mission pods was supposed to be a primary feature.
Anyway, just some food for thought and potential C-Store ideas.
For further consideration is the following:
The Nebula Dreadnaught: remove the console and the subsystem targeting, add the ability to mount cannons in the forward arc slots, and add one or two universal weapon slots capable of mounting any conventional starship weapon(s), giving said weapons a 360 degree firing arc even if they are torpedoes or cannons. For play ballance, the weapons in the universal slots (other than turrets) might require 15% to 20% additional cool down periods before fireing again.
The mighty Nebula Dreadnaught! The ship with NO blind fire arc!
Yeah, it'd probably be an energy hog if there were cannons in each of the forward weapon slots and in the universal weapon slot(s) and beam arrays or turrets in the rear weapon slots, but that's what EPS consoles are for, and you have to admit, the sheer volume of fire produced should at the very least be visually impressive!
[EDIT]: If a Nebula Dreadnaught ever becomes a viable C-Store option, it's Mission Pod should be unique to it and not become available as a costume piece to any other Nebula. Personally, I'm visualizing a sort of over/under dual pod arrangement for a trully 360 degree shperical fire arc (mainly to avoid the "shooting through the ship to kill the enemy" graphics glitch that would otherwise happen.[/EDIT]