Rihannsu
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 1,792
In response to recent requests on which Reputation abilities I've been selecting, and why, I thought I'd post a commentary in the forums. I did not do any testing before picking my Rep powers. I mostly made my choices based on each power's description and what I thought would give me an overall better benefit as they applied to these two Rules:

Rule #1: Up-Time
Whenever possible I would pick choices that were "always on" vs. "chance procs", or if both options were RNG-related, I'd go with what I percieved to be the higher percentage.

Rule #2: Free Defense is Good
My choices also tended to fall to the defensive. I figure the more layers of passive survivability I can stack keep me free to be *active* in my offense. I play better (regardless of role) when I'm less concerned with keeping myself alive.

With these Rules in mind, let's take a look at my choices:

Romulan Star Empire
Tier 1 Ground: Lethality (Crit Buff) vs. Enhanced Personal Shields (Shield Buff)
I went with the shield buff. For both Rules above, and noting my experience that ground shields tend to fall quickly, with few options to heal them, so it's good to keep defenses up as long as possible.

Tier 2 Space: Precision (Crit Buff) vs. Enhanced Shield Systems (Shield Buff)
For my Tacs, I broke the rules and went with Precision. While ground shields are problematic, there are always ways to buff/repair oneself in space. So, Crit chance seemed a better idea. For my other careers, I select the Shield Buff.

Tier 3 Ground: Reactive Shielding (Shield Heal Chance) vs. Disabling Strikes (Knbk Chance)
I went with shield heal for Rule 2, but also because while knockback can be fun and does have it's uses, it's only good in specific situations. Uncontrolled, a passive "always on chance" to knockback could be devastating (like when there are many mobs too close to each other).

Tier 4 Space: Emergency Secondary Shielding (Shield Heal Chance) vs. Sensor Targeting Assault (Placate Chance)
This one was tough. Both are defensive, which makes Rule 2 happy, but niether is always on. In fact, they are both small chances, and if the Placate works, it doesn't last long (especially being fragile). For most of my characters I went with the Shield heal, figuring that there's no better time to have a free heal than right have I've been hit by a crit. However, on one "Subterfuge/CC" Sci (just for the theme), and on my more "aggressive" Tacs (on the idea that my chance to Crit is greater than an NPC's chance to crit against me), I chose the Placate.

Tier 5: Quantum Singularity Manipulator
No choice here, but I like this power. It's clearly an "offensive" buff for any Sci-based character, but also helps Engie's with some of their heals. As a Tac, any offense/heal buff is always welcome, but I really like the cloak. I've used it several times as an "Oh Sh--!!" escape! Say I get hit by a near-one-shot, where I'm suddenly down to single-digit-percent hull points. I click this and run away. Getting a few seconds "off-radar", can help one recover from what would otherwise be a mortal wound.

Task Force Omega
Tier 1 Ground: Medical Nanites (Regen Buff) vs. Omega Weapon Proficiency (Weapon Buff)
Here I went with the "The best defense is a good offense" - And always on dmg buff (however minor) is fantastic, especially when compared to such a slight heal. The basic Regeneration mechanic in this game is so insignificant it almost doesn't exist, even with the slight buff, it's just not worth it.

Tier 2 Space: Hull-Repairing Nanites (Regen Buff) vs. Omega Weapon Training (Weapon Buff)
As T1 above, MOAR DAKKA!!!

Tier 3 Ground: Rotating Weapon Frequency (Remodulation Buff) vs. Regenerative Shield Augmentation (Shield Heal)
The need to remodulate isn't that big of a deal, especially if you have the Intergral Frequency Remodulation from one of the STF ground sets. Consider also that if I'm not fighting Borg, remod'ing is pointless, so there's really only one choice here. Go with the always on, always useful, shield heal.

Tier 4 Space: Omega Graviton Amplifier (Shield Penetrating Dmg Proc) vs. Superior Shield Repair (Shield Heal)
Unlike the Romulan T4, where the shield heal was also only a proc, this one is an always on passive, clearly passing both Rules. Even after it's recent nerf, the Superior Shield Repair is like adding multiple free [REG] tags to every Shield. Yes, please!

Edit: In my original posting, I goofed and put the T4 Romulus placate power vs. the shield heal here. Thanks to Sololionman65 for pointing this out. Corrected to Omega Graviton Amp. My preference is still for the "always on" vs. the "RNG-chance" option.

Tier 5: Medical Nanite cloud
As Romulan T5 above, there's no choice, but here's a great "reset" button for you and your team.

So there you go. My choices and thoughts are anecdotal. For those interested in my background: I've been play STO since just after launch. I keep pretty good tabs on the info available here in the forums, Dev Tracker, and the Wiki. I don't PvP, I only play PvE, but I do frequent Elite STFs. I'm open to questions/discussion. If you have any, post them below.

Check out this link for more info on the Reputation system, including details on the abilities:
http://www.stowiki.org/Reputation_System

Live Long and Prosper!

You can find/contact me in game as @PatricianVetinari. Original Join Date: Feb 2010.
Need Help with Ship's Power? Check out my Ship Power Guide and Calculator.

Last edited by lordhavelock; 01-19-2013 at 10:51 PM. Reason: Correct T4 Omega review.
Ensign
Join Date: Jan 2013
Posts: 9
# 2
01-19-2013, 06:11 PM
I use a different calculus. People should think of how much damage they take on the ground and in space, versus how much they're able to dish out in both arenas.

In ground combat, I'm much more likely to be hitting lots of things with AOE weapon powers, and much less likely to be taking damage (with my boffs around, or in a group) and most mobs don't have tons of HP, so crits are a *much* bigger deal on ground. So I went with that, first. Someone once described ground combat to me as "crits are king," and they're right. I think very little of defense in ground combat, ESPECIALLY since shields are so easy to knock out. Just stock up on HP potions and, esp if you have the Omegga cloak, you should be fine.

In space, though, I'm much more likely to be taking damage from a whole host of mobs, and often only have myself to fight back. In space, all else being equal, defensive powers will get you more bang for your buck.

Here was my version for each.

Romulan

Tier 1 Ground: Lethality (Crit Buff) vs. Enhanced Personal Shields (Shield Buff)
It's ground combat and crits are king. For most builds, you'll get more bang for your buck using crits. Ground tanks may want the shields, though, but most everyone else is better off with the crits. Honestly, Lethality is one of the best reputation powers, period, IMO.

Tier 2 Space: Precision (Crit Buff) vs. Enhanced Shield Systems (Shield Buff)
This is more of a contest than tier one's ground version. Tacs/escorts and DPS builds may want to go with the crit buff, it's a *very* good crit buff, but I think the shields can be worth it, since shields matter a lot more in space than on the ground and you're going to be taking the brunt of the damage in space far more often.

Tier 3 Ground: Reactive Shielding (Shield Heal Chance) vs. Disabling Strikes (Knbk Chance)
The knockback can be fantastic and if you have a high-ground crit rate and use AOE weapons, it will trigger more often than you think.... but honestly, for the single solitary fact that Disabling Strikes could trigger a knockback with disastrous consequences, I went with Reactive Shielding. I've actually seen Disabling Strikes cause wipes, especially on "the big dig" map, where there isn't much gravity to begin with.

That said, if you're willing to deal with the very small chance of a knockback you really didn't want, and keep your crit rate high, you'll get more bang for your buck with Disabling Strikes, especially if you use weapons with AOE components.

Tier 4 Space: Emergency Secondary Shielding (Shield Heal Chance) vs. Sensor Targeting Assault (Placate Chance)
It should be noted that Sensor Targeting Assault is NOT fragile. When it procs, you'll get the full 2 seconds. On this one, I say flip a coin. The shield heal isn't terribly large, and the placate isn't terribly long, but both are useful.

Omega Powers:

Tier 1 Ground: Medical Nanites (Regen Buff) vs. Omega Weapon Proficiency (Weapon Buff)
If crit is king in ground combat, high DPS is the next best thing. As I've said a few times, chances are you'll be doing more of the damage and less of the getting-hit in ground combat, so most builds -- and maybe even all, for this one -- should go for Omega Weapon. If you need HP, just click a large HP potion. They're cheap enough, are stack-able to 20 available from merchants and have a low enough cool down that you can pop pain medication when you have a splitting headache.

Tier 2 Space: Hull-Repairing Nanites (Regen Buff) vs. Omega Weapon Training (Weapon Buff)
If you're using Resilient Shields and have some decent hull armor for resistances, there's a good chance you're taking so little damage to the hull that Hull-Repairing Nanites could even keep you at 100% health for most circumstances. This is me most of the time, including in some pretty crazy PVE situations, outside of STFs.

Out of all the Reputation powers in the game, this one's my second favorite, and frees me up to use my hull heal boff skills on other people, or add more boff powers for DPS or control. I definitely notice the before-and-after difference from taking this power.

If I used escorts as my main class of ship, I'd say go with Omega, but I'd rec Hull-Repairing Nanites for just about anyone else.

Tier 3 Ground: Rotating Weapon Frequency (Remodulation Buff) vs. Regenerative Shield Augmentation (Shield Heal)
Rotating Weapon Frequency is dumb. Don't get it. Even if you loved, loved, loved ground borg STF's, don't get it -- your STF borg task force sets, with their remodulate powers, are more than enough to suffice. And I say that thinking that Regenerative Shield Augmentation isn't that great to begin with, but at least useful far more often.

The devs really ought to replace Rotating Weapon Frequency, or at least give it a passive bonus to damage, like bypassing a % of the shield. Until then, forget about it.

Tier 4 Space: Sensor Targeting Assault (Placate chance) vs. Superior Shield Repair (Shield Heal)

The OP botched this one... the choice is between OMEGA GRAVITON AMPLIFIER and Superior Shield Repair.

Omega Graviton Amplifier grants a kinetic damage proc that completely bypasses shields, doing 100% of its damage to the hull. The proc rate is 2.5% for energy weapons and 5% for torps. As a max level science officer, it would do about 750 damage, all to the hull, and you can 'expect' it to proc at least a couple times a fight, on average. That may mean many fights it won't proc at all, and some fights it will proc a bunch of times.

The shield, post-nerf, heals about 250 damage per side of each shield every 6 seconds (for 1000 shield hp max total). It's not anything close to amazing, particularly if you have shield heal boff powers on your ship (and why wouldn't you?), but heals about 1/3 as much as the regen of transfer shield strength... so not too shabby, and would work well with tac team, so it has some good synergy there.

Again, neither of these are game-breaking powers (post shield nerf, of course). I don't think it's going to make too much of a difference either way. If you don't have a problem keeping your shields in decent shape, go with the proc. DPS is DPS. Otherwise, go with the shields.

Last edited by sololionman65; 01-19-2013 at 06:24 PM.
Ensign
Join Date: Jan 2013
Posts: 9
# 3
01-19-2013, 06:39 PM
One final thing to consider: if you can already stay alive far more often than not, and if you're already to able to generally deliver the heals, etc., to other players that you get out, then anything that adds to your DPS is going to make you kill things faster, which means more missions and better rewards in those missions, by being more likely to make secondary goals inside them.

So, for DPS characters or characters who don't need additional defensive abilities, feel free to trend toward the DPS choices and away from defensive ones. If all of them amount to save your team a single minute in an elite STF, that could mean the difference between getting the secondary rewards or not, since so often those missions can be right on the line for secondary rewards.
Rihannsu
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 1,792
# 4
01-19-2013, 11:03 PM
Sololionman65, excellent review! I see your points about ground being Crit King. I'll likely still stick on the defensive on Ground. Certainly though there's nothing wrong with your choices, we even agree on a couple, but it just comes down to playstyle. Thanks for giving such good detail!

Quote:
Originally Posted by sololionman65 View Post
...The OP botched this one... the choice is between OMEGA GRAVITON AMPLIFIER and Superior Shield Repair...
Doh! Silly me. I criss-crossed the other option from T4 Romulan. LOL.

It doesn't change my opinion, but I did make an update/fixing the post.

You can find/contact me in game as @PatricianVetinari. Original Join Date: Feb 2010.
Need Help with Ship's Power? Check out my Ship Power Guide and Calculator.
Career Officer
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 229
# 5
01-20-2013, 03:52 AM
Romulan Star Empire
Tier 1 Ground: Lethality (Crit Buff) vs. Enhanced Personal Shields (Shield Buff)
I went with Crits. Increasing the shield cap just makes it less likely to be 1-shotted. I either use cover or a stun to try to avoid that. Increasing the crits helps shorten the fights. I look at this in the same way I don't use shield cap consoles on my ships.

Tier 2 Space: Precision (Crit Buff) vs. Enhanced Shield Systems (Shield Buff)
As above.

Tier 3 Ground: Reactive Shielding (Shield Heal Chance) vs. Disabling Strikes (Knbk Chance)
I avoid knockback like the plague. When I've gone to all that trouble to get mobs in range, I don't want to push them away because it looks cool. I use to ban +knockbacks in things like IGE... it's like using TBRs in STF, if you don't know what you're doing...

Tier 4 Space: Emergency Secondary Shielding (Shield Heal Chance) vs. Sensor Targeting Assault (Placate Chance)
Placate isn't quite as fragile as it looks. Breaking target locks is good and in PvE, the mob will frequently maneuver into a worse position.


Task Force Omega

Tier 1 Ground: Medical Nanites (Regen Buff) vs. Omega Weapon Proficiency (Weapon Buff)
I went with the Regen buff to help counter DoTs. This weapon buff doesn't buff CRTH.

Tier 2 Space: Hull-Repairing Nanites (Regen Buff) vs. Omega Weapon Training (Weapon Buff)
As above. Especially since the plasma procs got buffed.

Tier 3 Ground: Rotating Weapon Frequency (Remodulation Buff) vs. Regenerative Shield Augmentation (Shield Heal)
Remod CD reduction? Not that valuable. Worthless against non-Borg. Really Cryptic, do you think people do ground STFs anymore?

Tier 4 Space: Omega Graviton Amplifier (Shield Penetrating Dmg Proc) vs. Superior Shield Repair (Shield Heal)
Base shield regen is low, this isn't going to make it better. Killing faster on the other hand. I'd go with the shield regen in PvE, but choose the Amplifier for PvP. Since PvE is dirt easy anyway, I went with the Amplifier.

-----

The thing about 'always-on' versus 'sometimes', is you have to crunch the numbers. Take DPS for example. [DMG] is always on, [CRTH] is sometimes. So if you had to choose between a weapon with dmg3 or crth3? Which would you pick? The one that gives the highest overall DPS right? Well for me and a few others, it's NOT dmg3. On the other paw, crtd3 is probably the lowest average DPS.

Or comparing Adv Fleet plasma beam array +acc versus the new ones from the Rommie store. The Rommie ones come with a Disruptor proc that debuffs dmg resist by 10%. But the fleet weapons have a 8% higher base damage (and tact consoles buff which damage?).
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 112
# 6
01-21-2013, 07:54 PM
Nice summary. I think you are way off on the Romulan Tier 4 skill. Granted, I have not used either of them, but the 2 second placate seems pretty huge. At 20%, and apparently with no "once every 10 seconds" thing to it, you could be untargetable for a decent amount of time. Granted, it will depend on your build a bit. Also, for my thing it says the shield heal is 600 per facing. Maybe this goes up with skills, I am not sure. But it also can only happen once every 10 seconds. Even if it is more than tripled with skills, such that you get 2000 shield heal every 10 seconds, that still only equals about 200 a second. That is good, but compared to a lot of the high dps you can run into, it is not great.

The reason I even found this thread though is because I am really torn on the Romulan Tier 3 skill. The knock back to me seems better because of similar reasons to placate. If I am not mistaken, knock back would put the enemy on the ground for a bit where he wont be able to hit you, which is fairly powerful. On the other hand, a 100 shield boost for ground is huge, because the max shields you will be running is about 300, maybe 400. That is a lot, and the 50% turn on rate is very nice.

I would really appreciate a thorough run down of the Tier 3 skills, because I just got to Tier 4 and want to do the placate but have to choose between the shield and knockback skills first!
Rihannsu
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 1,792
# 7
01-21-2013, 09:53 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by interestedguy View Post
...The reason I even found this thread though is because I am really torn on the Romulan Tier 3 skill. The knock back to me seems better because of similar reasons to placate...
Knockback has it's purpose, for example when doing Inferno, in the last room, having a Pulsewave comes in handy for knocking the Borg into the soup. Or in Cure, when trying to keep the Borg away from the nodes, it comes in handy to be able to push them back.

The problem with knockback is that when it's not controlled, it can cause serious problems. In KA, if you aggro too many groups, you're dead. You'll be overwhelmed. This happens in many other missions (Assimilated, comes to mind), where mobs are close together.

Even when there aren't other mobs to worry about, you can also loose DPS if you're constantly having to chase down your foe. Knockback (again, when uncontrolled) can really throw off team mechanics (pushing the enemy out of sniper range, for example). Finally, there are times where if you push foes around you can bug a mission.

So, again, Knockback can be good. It can be awesome! But I don't think having an always on/uncontrollable chance to throw foes around to be an advantage.

Taking the above into consideration and comparing it to the shield buff, I'd have to chose the shield power every time, but I wish you well in whatever you select.

You can find/contact me in game as @PatricianVetinari. Original Join Date: Feb 2010.
Need Help with Ship's Power? Check out my Ship Power Guide and Calculator.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 112
# 8
01-22-2013, 03:56 AM
Hey lordhavelock, thanks a lot for the reply. I actually still havent decided yet which one to do.

The fact that you cant turn the knock back off could be a problem, especially like you say for aggroing to many enemies.
Ensign
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 3
# 9
05-29-2013, 03:34 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by interestedguy View Post
Nice summary. I think you are way off on the Romulan Tier 4 skill. Granted, I have not used either of them, but the 2 second placate seems pretty huge. At 20%, and apparently with no "once every 10 seconds" thing to it, you could be untargetable for a decent amount of time.

At first I thought the Romulan Tier 4 was a no-brainer; why would you waste being untargetted for a mere 2 seconds compared to the fairly decent shield buff alternative? But lately I've been wondering if it's that obvious - can anyone confirm if the effects stack from the sensor assault?
Ensign
Join Date: Sep 2013
Posts: 1
# 10
09-09-2013, 11:18 PM
What about the nukara rep rewards? Most don't seem to fit either of your rules.
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