Hello and happy Thanksgiving to all in the US and other countries where this day marks an official day of Thanksgiving. Yes today is a day that Americans tend to consume large amounts of turkey and other assorted holiday foods, watch some football and hang out with family.
The holiday is really stemmed from a tradition of giving thanks for a bountiful harvest and the fruits of our labor. For those of us playing Star Trek Online, we can be thankful we get to play this fun game with an opportunity to immerse ourselves in an interactive Star Trek universe. Gene Roddenberry’s classic quasi-utopian expression of a plausible future for humanity is ours to explore.
I am also thankful that Cryptic finally added the Fleet Admiral rank insignia for us to proudly display on our uniforms. Yay!
Well, I do not intend to spend this entire blog post blathering on about food and holidays, but it is always a mentally healthy exercise to be thankful for what you have regardless of whether others have more.
OK, last week I offered an opportunity to get free stuff! Rodanna hung out in the renovated Club 47, three times over last weekend trying to give away an awesome Mark XIV weapon. None of you showed up? That is the first time I have run a meet up event and had no takers. :(
OK enough about that. Beams or Cannons? Wow that is a loaded question and one that is sure to spark intense debate.
Beam weapons are often seen on big cruisers that have a difficult time turning and keeping weapons on target. A “beam boat” can effectively keep targets in a 360 degree arc constantly under fire. It can also be very good at targeting multiple enemies in a 360 arc. The problem with beam weapons is that the two primary tactical BOFF boosts for them are a little weak. Beam Overload provides a big, one time punch of up to eight times the “normal” weapon damage. Fire at Will is great for targeting multiple enemies but it fires randomly so you lose some tactical control. I have used beams effectively on smaller more agile ships such as the nimble science vessels and the Veteran reward destroyers. Typically if the ship can turn at 12 degrees per second base, then the dual beam banks up front can be useful. Dual beam banks hit real hard. Beams however don’t seem to do as much destruction as the cannon weapons. Honestly I am not sure if it is the BOFF abilities or my imagination.
Cannons just seem to rip ships apart better. Maybe it is the rapid fire and scatter volley BOFF abilities with that awesome spray of “bullets” that makes it seem like such a badass way to dispatch your hapless foes. The single cannons have a little higher DPS than standard beam array weapons but suffer from a narrow firing arc of only 180 degrees to the beam array’s 270 arc. Dual cannons have a very narrow 45 degree arc and that means you better have them mounted on an escort.
I think it all depends on how you want to play the ship. If you want to have a major frontal assault with devastating DPS then cannons are probably your best bet on a Battle Cruiser, Escort or one of the more nimble Science ships. Big slow cruisers with sub-10 degree base turn rates are better suited to beam weapons. Heavy tank ships can use beam weapons to fire on a variety of ships anywhere within a 10km sphere and help draw fire away from escorts and science ships.
Sometimes when I am feeling extra lazy as opposed to my normal regular lazy ;) I like flying a big beam boat cruiser. I don’t have to really pay attention to the target location since I can hit it hard in any location. Sure when I am ready to unload to a finishing move of a torpedo spread, I need to get the ship into one of two 90 degree arcs, fore or aft. That is half the sphere! No problem. The lazy man’s ideal setup six beam array weapons and a torpedo launcher front and rear. I just sit back, suck down a frosty beverage and fire away :)
When I feel like I want to rage kill a bunch of enemies then it is cannons for sure. A hail of bullets followed by a pleasing fireworks show as the warp core explodes and the fools that dared to challenge me ponder existence in the next life… **snicker**. I know I am not alone on that ;)
Enjoy this fine Thanksgiving Day or this great miscelleneous Thursday, which ever suits your situation and be thankful you get to play Star Trek Online :)
Below are a few of Admiral Sager’s ships with a variety of beams and cannons.