There was a ship bundle that was released while I was out of commission, but it was attractive enough for me to get online just long enough to buy it while it was on sale. Which one is this, you ask? Why, it’s the Allied Flight Deck Cruiser bundle.
Like the earlier Allied Escort bundle, which contained one Allied fleet for each faction – Caitian for Fed, Ferasen for Klingon, and Reman for Romulan, this one includes a Tellarite ship for Fed, an Orion ship for KDF and a Suliban ship for Romulan. The stats for these new ships are good (for a change!), and are surprisingly competitive. All three ships are almost identical stat-wise, except the Suliban ship comes with a Battle Cloak in exchange for slightly less hull, so this time I can just show it once:
- Tier: 6
- Faction: Starfleet
- Rank Required: Vice Admiral
- Hull Strength: 46,575 at level 50 and 54,000 at level 60
- Shield Modifier: 1.0
- Fore Weapons: 5
- Aft Weapons: 3
- Device Slots: 4
- Bridge Officer Stations: 1 Lieutenant Tactical, 1 Lieutenant Commander Tactical/Command, 1 Commander Engineering, 1 Ensign Science, 1 Lieutenant Commander Universal
- Console Modifications: 3 Tactical, 5 Engineering, 2 Science
- Base Turn Rate: 9
- Impulse Modifier: 0.17
- Inertia: 40
- +5 to All Subsystem Power
- 1 Hangar Bay pre-loaded with Tellarite Adamant Fighters
- Console – Universal – I.F.F. Manipulator
- Starship Mastery Package (Flight-Deck Cruiser)
- Absorptive Plating (+Kinetic and Physical Damage Resistance)
- Rapid Repairs (+Regeneration)
- Quick Deployment (+Hangar Launch Recharge)
- Enhanced Plating (+Energy and Radiation Damage Resistance)
- Majority/Minority (Starship Trait)
- Cruiser Command Array
- Command – Shield Frequency Modulation
- Command – Attract Fire
Yeah, these ships have 5/3 weapon layouts, Cmdr Engineering with options for dual LtC Tac/Sci. They have very hefty hulls, and they even turn okay (for cruisers, anyway)! At Fleet grade they gain an additional Tactical Console slot, which brings them very close to the level of Arbiter/Kurak Battlecruisers; in many ways, these ships actually perform very similarly to the Battlecruisers, the main differences being that these ships are more durable and support pets, at the expense of the Intel Specialty seat that allows the Battlecruisers to run OSS. The new fighters are pretty nice too; in play they seem to be much more effective than most fighters, and the IFF Console is kinda fun when you use it on enemy mobs. The Starship Trait Majority/Minority is an odd one, as it gives different passive bonuses depending on whether your team outnumbers the enemy, or vice versa.
As nice as these ships are, I haven’t actually seen a large number of them in-game. Why? My guess is that they are Allied ships, and if you enjoy the traditional Federation/KDF/Romulan ship aesthetics, these may not appeal to you. In my case though? I LOVE these! I love them because it turns out I have two toons who are perfect for these ships!
You might remember my Delta Recruit, the Engineering Captain Zdrossk who happens to be a Tellarite. I have previously tweaked him into a carrier captain, and he’s settled into his Jupiter-class Carrier ever since… but to be perfectly honest that ship just isn’t much fun to fly. It’s slow, it feels underpowered with 6 weapons, and the Callisto pets just seem somewhat lackluster. As a result Zdrossk has been warming the bench but this new ship is giving him new life! Having swapped out his bridge crew and shuffling his traits around, Zdrossk is now the proud captain of the Tellarite cruiser T.S.C. Gripe Porcinas.
That’s Spanish for… Swine Flu. Shhhhh. Don’t tell that to Zdrossk.
I have to say, this change has made Zdrossk a lot more fun to play! Equipped with both Quantum Phase sets as well as the currently available Trillithium Laced Weaponry set (rewarded from missions, and therefore free), it’s a bit of a budget build but still pretty competitive. Once he gets the last piece of gear next week, Zdrossk will be pretty much set with his gear. As far as story continuity goes, I suppose Zdrossk can be considered on a leave of absence from Starfleet, and is now taking what he learned back to help modernize the Tellarite navy.
Even more so than Zdrossk, my Orion girl Nessi has never quite settled into a proper ship; she switched from a Najsov to an Eternal to the Ryn’kodan, but none of them really felt right. Until now! The Orion Blackguard Flight-Deck Cruiser is a godsend for Nessi, which is the perfect fit for her.
As designs go, I quite enjoy the fat peanuts of previous Orion ships, but this one is actually a canon design from Enterprise… so I can’t complain. I rather like those turrets popping out of the hull, they definitely give the ship a warship feel. Nessi is the only toon of mine who runs a full suite of Antiproton weapons sans torpedoes, so she plays a bit differently than Zdrossk (who uses the Quantum Phase Torpedo). She is also a lot less developed than Zdrossk, being a much newer toon, so her gear still needs work to be brought up to par. Still, I took this ship out on an ISA run the other night with some new Fleetmates, and managed to score 32K DPS (at least, according to one of their combatlogs)… which isn’t bad for such a junior toon. One thing I noticed in that run is that Nessi did so well because my fleetmates didn’t… and the reason why they didn’t was that a lot of them were in glass cannons who died several times. It’s interesting to learn that perhaps survivability isn’t as unimportant as we’re all led to believe.
If you recall, Nessi is meant to a young and junior officer on her boat; she is a mere medic/assassin/poisoner, and her captain is the chunky Orion fellow to her left in the above picture, Mister Mithar. Like Zdrossk with his predominantly Tellarite crew, Nessi here is part of a mostly Orion crew on an Orion cruiser.
Neither Tellarites nor Orions (nor most species for that matter) offer any bonuses in space combat, so in terms of ship builds they are both sub-optimal, but I can’t deny the appeal of this sort of racial “themed builds”. I’ve already done it for Gortusk (Gorn) and Congilla (Apes), but these species-specific ships allow me to take things to the next level. If you have a Tellarite or Orion (or Suliban/Alien, I guess?) captain, I strongly recommend these ships not only because they allow for fun themed-builds, but these are solid, high-performing ships.