Cat-Scorts Time

Something new for today: The kitties get new ships! S’right, the Caitians and the Ferasens get their first T6 ships in STO, and they look to be coming with a new play mechanic as well. Here is the official announcement.

Post contents:

We’re very excited to announce three new Tier 6 Escorts, one for each faction. These starships are available in the C-Store and can be purchased by level 50 players (Vice Admiral and Lieutenant General ranks).

Starfleet will gain access to the Caitian Shikaris Escort.

9260e94afdd4ff3296f63583e655b9c31490219139

Klingons will gain access to the Ferasan Slithus Escort.

f4f2f7fa93a9515140e93228908522f91490219125

Romulans will have the opportunity to captain the Hathos Warbird.

1d08e11253d5ec0fce66ec1e90a9d3f51490219151

Each of these Escorts will have a Fleet variant made available upon release. In addition to the standard Starship Trait and Console, these escorts have a special Heavy Weapon Equipment Slot.

Items and Abilities

480062160c944b7fb8d298ee5edd9b4e1490301190

Railgun (Heavy Weapon)

This escort also comes equipped with the Railgun Heavy Weapon in its Heavy Weapon Slot. This potent weapon deals kinetic damage periodically and fires like a standard weapon. It may be upgraded like a standard weapon, swapped out for another Heavy Weapon and placed in any other starship’s Heavy Weapon Slot. Railguns fire in a 360 degree arc and deal heavy kinetic damage to your target. A portion of this damage will bypass the target’s shields.

Escorts and Heavy Weapons

Heavy Weapons are a new item slot in your starship’s inventory UI. Only Heavy Weapons can be placed in this slot. Heavy Weapons can be upgraded like normal weapons and also like normal weapons they will show up in your weapons UI and can be set to autofire. However, unlike most projectile and directed energy weapons, they are not affected by weapon modes like Beam: Overload, Torpedo: High Yield, etc.

Initially, these starships (and their fleet variants) will be the only ships to possess a Heavy Weapons Slot. However, in an upcoming release, many starships will be receiving this Heavy Weapons Slot. Tier 6 Raiders and all Tier 6 starships with a Tactical Commander seat, 7 weapons and 1 or fewer Hangar Bays will receive a Heavy Weapons Slot and access to a basic upgradeable Heavy Weapon.

Players already in possession of one of these starships upon this update’s release will need to claim a Heavy Weapon from the Reclaim tab of the Dilithium Store (for 0 Dilithium). All newly acquired starships with a Heavy Weapon Slot will come equipped with a Heavy Weapon by default.

This new inventory slot and item is being introduced to reinforce the damage role of starships that possess them and can significantly improve your starship’s damage output (especially after being upgraded).

d38f0f96e5e7147fcb3835f66c1c43151490301212

 

Console – Universal – Railgun Destabilizer Module

This starship comes equipped with a Railgun Destabilizer Module Universal Console. Activating this console will cause your starship to overload its Railgun and deliver a withering barrage of explosive projectiles at random nearby enemies. Each projectile deals heavy kinetic damage in an area of effect with a small amount of shield penetration. If your hull strength is low at the end of your barrage, you will receive a large increase to your flight speed, damage resistance rating, and defense for a brief time. Otherwise, your Railgun Barrage ability’s recharge time will be reduced slightly.

This console also provides a passive boost to Impulse Expertise and Maximum Weapon Power.

This console may be equipped on any console slot, but may only be equipped on the Caitian Shikaris Escort, the Ferasan Slithus Escort, or the Hathos Warbird.

Starship Trait

After achieving level 5 in your Caitian Shikaris Escort, Ferasan Slithus Escort, or Hathos Warbird, you will unlock the Hit and Run Starship Trait. While this trait is slotted, Evasive Maneuvers will provide a very high damage resistance rating buff. When Evasive Maneuvers expires, you’ll receive a weapon damage and critical hit damage buff for a short time.

Availability

These starships are available in the C-store individually, or they can be found packaged together in the T6 Allied Escort Bundle.

Look for a follow up blog that will detail the stats on these awesome new Tier 6 ships in the near future!

Phil “Gorngonzolla” Zeleski

Cryptic Studios

Lead Systems Designer


So this “Heavy Weapon” slot is the new play mechanic. Can’t really comment on it until more details are published, even though this post specifically claims that it “can significantly increase your starship’s damage output”. Will it work that way? I am wondering specifically in terms of T’Leia’s Pilot Escort and Congilla’s T6 BoP with heavy dual cannons with 90%+ uptime of CSV. Will it be worthwhile to drop a DHC/DC for a heavy weapon that may or may not be affected by CSV? Guess we’ll have to wait and see!

UPDATE: It sounds like the Heavy Weapons slot will be in addition to existing weapon slots. This is great news!

Otherwise I am in favor of this release: giving more screen time to the faction-allied species gives them more of an in-game presence; I’d much rather see Caitian/Ferasen, Vulcan, Andorian, Tellarite, Ferengi, Orion, Gorn and Nausicaan ships than most of the fugly Delta Q ships and yes, the current glut of immersion-breaking temporal eyesores. Hopefully these will be welcome by the playerbase so we get to see more of this!

That being said, what is up with the Romulan ship? I mean (A) it looks like a Klingon BoP, and (B) isn’t this an “Allied” bundle? I know the Roms have very few friends, but c’mon, at least make this a Reman ship or something, with Scimitar-y aesthetics.

UPDATE: So the Romulan escort is in fact a Reman ship! It’s not immediately obvious from that one posted picture but that fact makes me happy – Like I said I love to see more representation of the playable allied species.

Anywho, stay tuned for updates on these guys!

 

Advertisements

8 thoughts on “Cat-Scorts Time

  1. So… it appears the circle is now complete. Way back when I first started playing STO, we called it “Escort Trek Online.” The more things change, the more they don’t change. lol

    Like

    1. Along with the Space skill rebalancing that’s nerfing BFAW, this may well bring escorts back into vogue! I really hope they can strike the right balance so BFAW crusiers are just as viable as zippy escorts. It’d be more interesting to see a variety of ships than One-Meta-All-the-Time.

      Like

      1. It’s pretty boss they’re slapping the heavy weapon slots onto older T6s and not making them a one time gimmick for this set. But, I’m not sure if an added heavy weapon slot alone will bring everyone back to escorts any time soon.

        Escorts are still my favorite class, but the end game content is not especially kind to them. What with the Iconians and their spam on spam on more spam with an extra side of spam, the Terrans with their magic insta-kill torpedo spreads and tractor beams/repulsors that melt hull, the Nakuhl’s invincible distortion routine, and the Tzenkethi with their impenetrable butt shields that kinda nullify the raider flanking bonus. Even the Borg with their almost continuous shield stripping and plasma burns can be tough. It’s hard out there for boats with eggshell hulls, limited engi/sci seating and narrow firing arcs.

        Still, these three look decent and it is nice to see more allied race based ships, finally (Orion T6s, when?). And 360 heavy weapons on my Malem and Valiant? Not gonna complain about that. I just hope they come in the energy flavour of your choice rather than being locked to plasma for roms, disruptors for kdf, and phasers for feds like all the lance type weapons.

        I already have a Caitian and a Reman, so if the next recruit event is open to KDF again, I’ll definitely roll a Ferasan to go with that Slithus, if the stats are as good as its looks. It’s pretty cute!

        Liked by 2 people

      2. I don’t think it will bring /everyone/ back to Escorts, but if this brings part of the player-base back to escorts, I would call it mission accomplished. Really, anything to break the current BFAW-only meta is welcome in my book, as long as it doesn’t push things into a different-something-only meta.

        Also as I said elsewhere, I’d jump on a T5 Orion ship too. Nessi has an almost exclusively Orion crew and they just don’t look right in a Klingon ship.

        Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s