Currently, Tactical Officers can train boffs in two melee abilities: Sweeping Strikes III and Lunge III. The Problem? THEY ARE ABSOLUTELY USELESS. At least from what I have observed. I had once given a tactical boff melee abilities to use as well as a melee weapon. During several encounters with NPCs, this boff did ABSOLUTELY NOTHING in each and every fight. He just stood there holding his Lirpa like a clueless fool. "How do I swing Lirpa?"
The only way I could get him to attack with some effectiveness was to designate a target to attack and manually activate his melee abilities, as well as assign them to my toolbar. Although enemy NPCs with melee tend to actually strike you regularly at close range, why can't my Boffs do the same and why can't they utilize melee abilities I give them? Will this be updated at some point? Caitians have this pounce ability (that for some reason they actually use frequently ) and I was hoping to turn my Caitain Boff into a melee combat specialist.
One of my fleet mates has this problem. I noticed he had his reman with a lurpa, and I told him to watch what happens...literally in 2 seconds that boff died. Had ot break it to him [fleetmate] that he really should only use range and not melee weps for the time being...felt bad for him though.
Melee needs more love in general....maybe a revamp with a melee only weps map?
Two of my main characters (a Fed Eng and a Klingon Sci) currently run with a Tactical BOFF as part of their standard away teams - both identically built/armed with a Bat'leth and Pollyalloy Weave Plus Sweeping Strikes I, Sweeping Strikes II, Lunge II and Smoke Grenade.
I've noticed the BOFFs will use both Smoke Grenade and Lunge II quite often (I was playing on the second one yesterday and this is still the case). They don't use sweeping strikes as often as I'd like, but I'll occasionally notice enemies flop about the place. They swing the Bat'leths but they don't spam it as often as a Playable Character would, let alone use combos.
They're not great extra DPS.
They perform the "role" I intended for them admirably though - they can get right in the face of a dangerous foe and either bounce them about or hold their attention whilst me and my other BOFFs focus fire them with Energy weapons. And they hardly ever die (though both of the Tac officers I picked specifically to have decent ground traits - one's a Tellarite with Pig Headed/Sturdy/Superior Lucky/Superior Aggressive, the other's an Alien with Superior Stubborn/Superior Sure Footed/Aggressive/Acute Senses)