I’ve been a bit remiss in adding new posts in recent days, mainly because I have been busy with the holiday season. STO is still occupying my free time though, and interestingly the two toons I posted back in November are now the ones I am focused on, as I attempt to push them through the story missions. The rest of my toons — my “mains” — are halfway through the Delta Rising missions, all of whom pausing at the Dragon’s Deceit mission while I await Fungi’s toons to catch up. Frankly, the Delta Rising missions haven’t really grabbed me so I haven’t felt any particular rush to complete them.
I did end up getting a T6 ship for Congilla about a month back, and I couldn’t resist the 20% discount on ships this past weekend so I bought a T5U ship for Kala. What a difference those ships make! Both Congilla and Kala are both level 60 now — Congilla is finally ready to head to the Delta Quadrant, and Kala is about to start the Breen story line. The ships though… that’s what I want to write about today.
Congilla’s new ride is a T6 Mat’Ha Raptor, the IKS Thade; I have to say the 5-2 weapon layout makes for one beastly escort. I have 4 dual disruptor cannons and a quantum torpedo launcher up front plus the Mat’Ha nose cannon, one disruptor turret and the Borg Cutting Beam in the back — attacking head on this thing deals a lot of damage. The new pilot specialization gives a few passive abilities that protect your rear arc, which works really well with the Mat’Ha (and escorts in general) and offsets the lack of rear firepower.
The biggest advantage of this ship over Congilla’s old Bird-of-Prey is the hull: at 67k it has almost double the hull strength and way more durable in battle. That said, even though the Mat’Ha is as maneuverable as any escort, when you’re accustomed to turning in a BoP, this feels like a slug sometimes. I am learning to compensate by flying up close to a target and coming to a complete stop, instead of circling a target and trying to keep it in my forward arc. It’s definitely a learning curve but I am starting to get the hang of it.
As sleek as the Mat’Ha is, visually it’s not as distinctive as a Bird-of-Prey. Frankly, I am a bit sad that BoPs are so rare in STFs anymore, BoPs are workhorses of the KDF and iconic Trek ships, I feel there should be more of them. Hopefully T6 BoPs will come out at some point and we’ll see them back in favor.
Kala is the last and newest of my toons, and so she is still the furthest behind on… well, everything. My original plan was to grind for the Breen Chell Grett during the winter event, because I didn’t want to spend the money to buy something for her, but that all changed when the ship sale happened. Don’t get me wrong, stats-wise the Chell Grett looks just as good as anything zen can buy, but I’m a stickler for “authenticity” and flying an enemy ship just isn’t going to cut it in the long run. Next question was, should I get the T6 Eclipse or the T6 Guardian (since she is an engineer by trade)?
Turns out? Neither.
I ended up getting a T5-U Odyssey tactical cruiser for Kala — it’s basically a trade-off between a Tier V ship mastery against an 11th console. Eventually the T6 ships will have fleet versions, so the smart money would’ve been on getting a T6 now and upgrade later, but come on, look at her — the Odyssey is one beautiful ship. Big. Sleek. Majestic. And a unique bridge. It might not have been the smart choice, but god I love this ship’s visuals.
Because Kala is so far behind my other toons, she still doesn’t have really good gear to outfit the new ship. Right now she is armed mostly with Mk XI and Mk XII rare phase beam arrays, the Jem’Hadar engine and shield from the Dominion missions, and various dropped gear. Even so, at 87k hull she is considerably tougher than the old Ambassador, with 55k hull. She still turns like an oversized SUV towing a 18-feet boat, but at least she can now complete that turn without becoming a burning husk. The next goal is to procure a set of reputation gear for this ship, but I’m not yet sure which one to work towards.
And since she has a new ship (NCC-99009 U.S.S. Pallas Athena, to be exact), Kala and her crew are also sporting new looks — along with some brand new bridge crew. It helps with the illusion of promotion and advancement, from being the crew of an old, obsolete ship as part of the home fleet, to a top-of-the-line cruiser at the forefront of Starfleet’s explorations. Time for new looks and new threads! This ain’t Kansas anymore, Dorothy. 😉
Kala can finally do STF’s without fear of getting yelled at, even at her current level of gear. :p One thing I have not tested out is the Aquarius destroyer that can separate from the Odyssey; I have not been overly impressed with the Hoh’Sus on the Bortasqu, since it seems to want to wander around instead of attacking, so I removed the Aquarius console from the Odyssey. Does the Aquarius behave in the same way as the Hoh’Sus? I’d be curious to find out. In the mean time though, I’m quite happy just appreciating the beauty of this new ship.