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Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
I am currently flying in a Recon Science vessel (which I picked both for the higher maneuverability and the ens tac slot)

Current fore weapons are a pair of phaser arrays and a transphasic torpedo launcher; the rear weapons are the same, though of slightly lower quality till I can get them upgraded.
For the engineering consoles I have netronium armor and a SIF-Generator. Science Consoles are an Emitter Array, 2 flow generators, and an enhanced plasma manifold. Tac consoles are 2 Phaser Relays and a plasma auto-turret.
I fit the full Aegis set and my devices are a stack of phaser turrets, a stack of shield and engine batteries, and a stack of weapon and axillary batteries.

As for my Boff layout:
Ens Tac: Tac Team I
Lt Tac: B:FAW I, Torpedo Spread II
Lt Eng: EPtW I, Extend Shields I
LtC Sci: Sci Team I, HE II, Photonic Officer II
Cmdr Sci, Polarize Hull I, TSS II, Tykens Rift II, Tykens Rift III

I picked the transphasics since I was hoping to get more damage on targets I haven't removed the shields from when I fire off the spread, but I was wondering if another type would work better. Also which is the better skill to have the higher version of: Fire at will or torp spread? I am considering swapping the phaser consoles for torp consoles, but am not sure at th moment. i am also considering trading Tykens Rift II for Gravity Well I.

I was using dual beam banks, but it seemed to me my rear phasers were firing just as often, so I might as well fight in the broadside. I imagine some of that stems for my heal heavy build and the fact I sometimes have to chase people down to keep them from exploding (seriously people, if you keep flying away from me when your shields are down and your ship on fire, I might just start letting you explode). I'm not entirely sure extend shields is needed, but I am not really sure what to do with those engineering slots. I don't really ever have shield problems, so I don't much see the need to emergency power to shields. At the very least, I can throw out 2 shield HoTs.

I mostly do STFs but I enjoy the Fed mirror event as well. I have been considering doing the elite STFs as well (though I think I might wanna find a fleet that does that first, getting the PUGs to not screw up the regulars can be a pain sometimes).


Does anyone who flies Science ships have any comments or recommendations? I am looking for honest feedback, not just cookie cutter builds and instructions to do x and not ask questions. If you have a suggestion, please tell me why.

On a side note, that sensor scan buff that builds up the longer a target is locked. I understand it buffs DPS and the magnitude of beam target subsystem. About how much of a buff are we talking about? Against a tough target that you have time to stack the buffs, can it make up for the fact you have less weaponry?
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 2
02-17-2012, 12:31 AM
Personally, I find your overall build is lacking focus.

You rationalise using Transhasic torps because you want to be able to do more damage when you use Torp spread and the shields aren't yet cleared, however your primary method of doing damage is broadsiding, which removes the torp launcher from your main firing arc and the chief advantage of the transphasics that they can still do reasonable DPS when shields are up. Going for Quantum or Plasma torps would be a better idea for occasional use with quantums obviously packing the most punch outside of Tricobalts, which itself is an option if you limit your use to the torp spread CD; and the plasmas for the added DoT effect for more damage and both options give you more bang when the shields are down.

The RSV is IMHO the most aggressively oriented sci vessel because of its agility and the boff/console layout. Try to maximise that trait.
Slotting the turret in the tactical slot is a way to use that slot and give yourself some protection against heavy torps, but if you want to do more damage, I'd recommend filling in the last phaser bank which is how the RSV cements its spot as a damaging sci ship.

Going on about it's agility, Dual beams + Turrets can push out a respectable amount of frontal firepower, and you can then bring your torpedo launcher into the mix while taking advantage of the RSV's agility to keep targets in the firing arc. Going for a full beam+turret combo without any torp launcher means you can use the Lt tac ability for say, scatter shot or rapid fire for the turrets for more oomph since you could be running a subsystem targeting weapons/shields every 2nd CD on the beam weapons though if you use all four innate subsystem targets you can fill your entire CD set. That's really where damage comes from; being able to rotate as many tactical CDs as possible.

I personally run FAW I and Spread II on my RSV, with a dual beam + torp and 3 turret layout for the weapons. I'm also running Tyken's III and GWI with Doffs giving a chance to spawn additional gravity wells after 12s. I can't run beam overload because my power consumption with that many weapons is already high and I'll lose more damage firing the thing in a sustained encounter than I'd gain, though it is nice to see a 11k crit. If I ditch the turrets and swap them to beam arrays for better broadside/turning damage, I could use beam overload, but I'd lose overall frontal DPS regardless. Best possible damage would probably be a full 6 beam broadside with 2 FAWs.

I find sci ships to be fairly fragile in STFs, but that pretty much applies to all but the most defensively designed ship layouts. I prefer EPtS over EPtW and just run with a higher base power for weapons in the offensive mode. EPtW only increases energy damage for a short period of time, while EPtS provides a damage reduction to shields for its full 30s duration, which I find to be far more useful as when I need to take defensive measures, it's only in bursts while I will be attacking for most of the time and thus I should base my energy levels around that activity pattern.

Extend shields is very useful if you want to support others, but as it doesn't do anything for you, you need to decide if you are willing to give up potentially Aux to Structural for a heal and damage resistance buff that's off the team CD or a eng team I + EPtS II combo for extra hull healing and a better shield damage reduction.

Photonic Officer is rather questionable in my point of view. It's a lengthy CD and only really reduces abilities to the shared system CD which is usually around the 30s mark rather than 45s/1min. It's also an anticipatory ability rather than a reactive one. Had it had the ability to reset Boff CDs, I'd pick it up in a heartbeat because I've had more situations where I'd go 'dammit! more plasma dot damage just as HE wore off' than 'I know I will need to use HE twice in rapid succession'.

I use almost the same Boff layout for the sci abilities as you do, but replaced Photonic with HE III and added a Jam Targeting Sensors II instead of the redundant HE II to act as a 'get off me!' card if I'm getting unwanted attention from a cube.

Between the MACO set, +35% shields via the console, EPtS, TSS and TacTeam, I find I can pretty much tank anything in normal STFs on my shields with cubes being possible if I go into full power to shields mode. On that point, because I have 14xxx shield facings, normal shield regeneration is insignificant. I need to use abilities to regenerate my shields in a reasonable period of time such as sci team or TSS.

The sensor scan ability is a 1% damage increase per stack from memory. TBH, it's not enough to compensate for the reduced weapons and/or tactical abilities. It needs to stack quicker and/or have more of an effect.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 3
02-17-2012, 05:16 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by mysteana View Post
The sensor scan ability is a 1% damage increase per stack from memory. TBH, it's not enough to compensate for the reduced weapons and/or tactical abilities. It needs to stack quicker and/or have more of an effect.
I was thinking it would be good if it stacked faster the closer you were to the target.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 4
02-17-2012, 05:21 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Raptor63549
my devices are a stack of phaser turrets
I HAVE been away a long time.

You can put Turrets in device slots now? O_o
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 5
02-17-2012, 05:24 AM
http://www.stowiki.org/Device_-_Heav...tellite_Turret

Wait til you have decent aggro before deploying or it won't last the full 5 mins.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 6
02-17-2012, 05:31 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by aashenfox
http://www.stowiki.org/Device_-_Heav...tellite_Turret

Wait til you have decent aggro before deploying or it won't last the full 5 mins.
Holy crap.

How hard are they to get? O_O
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 7
02-17-2012, 05:33 AM
I have no clue, I hate consumables. Seems like chucking ECs out of the port airlock.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 8
02-17-2012, 05:40 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by aashenfox
I have no clue, I hate consumables. Seems like chucking ECs out of the port airlock.
Everyone used to claim ECs flowed like water anyway.

(I gave away all mine when I left - so I'm pretty f'ing poor now.)
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 9
02-17-2012, 06:26 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by aashenfox
I was thinking it would be good if it stacked faster the closer you were to the target.
That would be cool. Another option could be to scale the stack rate with your sensor strength., maybe have sensor scan give you a couple freebies.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sevok View Post
Holy crap.

How hard are they to get? O_O
It's not really hard to get them, but it can take some time. You have to first do a DOff assignment to secure the plans for them which is an uncommon assignment, then you have to have a shipboard assignment to assemble from those plans, this is also an uncommon assignment. Do both and you get a stack of 20 turrets.

I just up an bought a couple stacks off the exchange, though, since I seem to get plans several times faster than I use them up.

I usually drop them near the kang, or the transwarp gate, to assist the person assigned to guarding that area.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mysteana View Post
Stuff
To be honest, I don't know all that much about torpedoes. I was under the impression the DoT on plasmas wasn't much worth the trouble (might just be mistaking comments about plasma energy weapons, though); also I could have swore torpedo abilities didn't work on tricobalts. I had considered quantums, though; how does the raw damage increase compare to the bleed through of transpasics?

Also, I was running dual beam banks previously, but they aren't very useful when I turn away constantly, so I was trying to get decent all-around damage. Maybe I need to work on my piloting. The aft torpedo launcher is there for a similar reason: I seem to be flying away from someone as often as I fly towards them. Also in turning fights (which, admittedly happen in missions more than anything else) it seems easier and faster to turn the opposite direction and bring a rear launcher to bear. Another tactic I use is when I manage to drop someone's shields, I fire off whichever launcher is aimed at the target (usually as a spread), then wheel around to launch the other one. I am guessing that would most benefit quantums since they have a long reloading time?

I wonder about a mine launcher instead. Any thoughts on those? I haven't used them that much, though I had considered making a D'Kyr build with an aft mine launcher, a dispersal pattern and eject warp plasma; fire off a tykens rift, then dive bomb a group of probes with eject warp plasma and a cluster of mines.

Having used extend shields, I do like it. I have been able to save ships that are damn near dead by using it with TSS, and it gives me the ability to heal and protect two targets at once; in some cases one of which is me. I am hesitant to add engineering team; I might be wrong, but hazard emitters seems to be the better heal. More than that, with photonic officer and 2 teams, I run up against shared cooldown problems, and I rather not lose a team ability that boost shields. I did consider Aux to SIF, another hull heal for myself isn't a bad idea; sometimes I tempt fate by letting my hull dip a bit and spending a few cycles of hazard emitters on somebody else, but I don't seem to take hull damage too quickly; the reactive shielding proc from the aegis set might help with that since it raises your resistance to incoming damage types. It's mainly the Ens. Engi slot I am wondering about, options are limited here, and what I do have available doesn't seem all that fantastic.

Still, I could try EPtS. I don't need it now, but elite STFs might require it. I do have a shield and engine battery as an emergency GTFO button, in addition to the shield heal and power bonus, it also spikes engine power which plays well the hyper impulse engines; I do try to avoid using them, though, since they are expensive. How do the other power skills compare? I likely won't benefit from EPtA since I run high aux and have a console and a battery that can max it out, and don't need a stealth sight buff. On the other hand, a speed boost from EPtE could be useful, since I find myself running around sometimes since completing the optional generally requires someone to split from the main group to guard the other side of the map, and some groups seem to like to pick opposite sides of the cube. A defensive bonus isn't a bad thing either.

How much of a beating do you usually take with your build? I never seem to have shield problems, but maybe I'm not taking aggro as much. The Aegis is a covariant shield, and the first set bonus increases defense at speed from what I hear(I run the throttle or fully open most of the time); without a capacity boosting console, my shields are 12.5k HP per facing.. MACO is a resilient shield, right (or is that Omega Force)?

Are you sure Photontic Officer is bad? It lasts 60 seconds and lets me fit a third heal in the time it normally takes to do 2. I do use it reactively; it shaves time off cooldowns in progress as well as reducing the cooldowns of abilities activated under its effect. I do admit, the cooldown is a lengthy one, though I have a DOff that shaves 10% off the recharge. As far as replacing it, if I bump up Hazard Emitters to III, wouldn't it be better to bump science team to II for better shield healing and use jam sensors I? Alternatively, since I focus on shield heals, what about upgrading TSS instead of HE?



Edit: I would like to change my answer on EPtS. With the extra DPS from that console (and some more from using grav well on unshielded targets), I seemed to be taking more damage in the cure due to increased aggro, and I had trouble holding it off since I spent my time babysitting a horde of tac officers who don't know how to keep shields up, or fly close enough to trade heals and buffs.

I swear ima let you people die next time.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 10
02-17-2012, 09:32 AM
If you're able to use use photonic officers well, then keep it. I'm not advocating for you to drop it, it's just that I've personally never been able to get any decent mileage out of it.

Quantums like all other torps deal I think 10% damage when they meet shields. Transphasics typically deal 2x the damage than equivalent quantums when having to go through shields but otherwise they deal ~50% less damage. The DoT on plasmas are indeed craptacular since they don't really scale well and the DoT effect lasts for 10 seconds when the reload is 8s, so assuming you've got the bad boy on auto-fire and in your sights full time, you're not even going to get the full DoT duration, but it does have a shield bypass in the DoT and when shields are down, it doesn't do that badly compared to the allmighty quantums. I like the idea behind transphasics as a torpedo that's still useful no matter what, but the implementation leaves much to be desired when you give up so much overall damage by loading it in instead of another energy weapon and have the power to support it.

I haven't used mine launchers all that much. I have seen them being used as an interesting decoy against the mob's random targeting and they do deal reasonable amounts of damage when they hit. It really comes down to play style I suppose, as an aft torpedo would be useful at all ranges while mine launchers only in spiking a route or as a point blank weapon.

I normally line up an attack run, slow down if not stop completely and hammer a single shield facing, locking the target down with gravity well or when their attention is on someone else so I usually get good amounts of time to hammer in frontal damage. If I need to realign myself, I usually use evasive manoeuvrers to quickly gain distance and line up or I just drop a GW/Tyken's and/or shoot out their engines and do things the hard way but I mainly rely on evasive to reposition myself if I need to while planning ahead on attack paths.

Hazard is indeed a better overall heal compared to Eng Team, especially since it removes DoTs and clears the annoying Borg shield neutraliser. You can drop Eng Team's CD using Doffs but if you prefer to use Sci team to heal, that's your decision. Aux to SIF is on a totally separate CD, which is what's really appealing to me and does give damage resistance to the hull, which is another nice bonus. It does do a reasonable amount of healing - 4461 healing with 124 aux power compared to around 5.5k with Eng Team I, but unlike Eng Team, you can't speed in on full impulse and drop it immediately, it is dependant on your auxiliary power. But, it does allow you to pop an aux battery then heal up in a pinch when you're caught with your pants down in other power settings. With my normal weapons power setting (64 aux) Aux to SIF heals for 2917 and I don't have that much skill points in Hull Repairs; 84 points via 6 ranks in the skill and no consoles boosting it.
Extend Shields is hands down one of the best shield heals in the game. I've still got it on a swap out engineering boff if I decide I need to step into a more supportive role but I typically run as a 'light escort' with extra utility and support abilities.

I normally don't get attacked too much, since I didn't pick up threat control. I inevitable get aggro by being first on the scene, bad luck in the random targeting or I'm hitting the target so hard/last one standing. However I can tank nigh anything in normal STFs and can take down two borg spheres single handedly without using 2min+ long CD abilities and can hold out against three for a decently long time, or possibly take them down using the long CDs. The MACO shield is a Resilient shield, so it has the innate 5% bleed-through and 5% absorption, on top of that there's a special added 10% damage resistance against energy weapons and another 20% versus plasma. The shields also have a special effect which is called Power Conduit Link, which increases all your power settings by 2 for 15s when taking energy damage and stacks 5 times. So, when you're under heavy fire you can basically add 10 to all your power settings, which I account for in my full power to shields setting.
With the readjustments to the Doffs, however, I'm probably going to stick with EPtS I and Aux to SIF I for my engineering abilities. Aux to SIF can be used on friendlies as well BTW, so it isn't just a personal heal.

Elite STFs are just on a whole different level of scary in the amount of damage that can fly your way. I've got 14,595 shield facings and I've seen the shields melt in seconds and that's with all of the resistances and absorptions the MACO shields have. I probably don't need EPtS in normals now, but I like to use them since the extra power gives innate shield resistance and regen on top of the extra 18% damage resistance and it has a 66% uptime with the missing 15s being covered by TSS if you really need it. That and it's on a separate system CD to every other ability I have and can never be used on anyone else, so that just makes it the perfect reliable emergency button for myself when I start taking fire. If I get targeted by a tactical cube in elite STFs, I pretty much instantly pop Tac Team, EPtS, Brace for Impact, Polarize Hull, Evasive and GTFO. I could absorb a good few moments of weapons fire from a tactical cube but those plasma torpedos are murder. Either that, or I use Jam Targeting Sensors and pull back. I've been bitten by far too many plasma torpedoes that deal 49k damage through shields.

I prefer HE III because hull healing has always been my biggest weak point. Shields I'm normally fine with due to EPtS and the MACO shields, so it's bleed-through damage and plasma DoTs that are killing me, hence why I promoted HE to rank III instead of TSS. You're more than free to use TSS III if that's what you feel to be the better option for yourself. I just didn't promote Sci Team to rank 2 because I didn't feel like I used it that much and the extra 5s cool down promoting it added was a bit much. Now that I need to learn to live without a 15s CD tac team, I probably will need to re-evaluate Sci Team. That and the discovery of how effective Aux to SIF is will probably mean HE doesn't have to work so darn hard in keeping my ship or my team alive.

Edit: As for letting people die, I normally throw Tac team on someone if I see their shield facings are bad, but if they obviously show signs of not managing their shields properly and/or are doing stupid things, I'll just let them die and feign ignorance/tunnel vision in normal STFs. After all, sci ships are rare and it's rarer still to have people who work as a team *shrug*
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