So you are Romulan Vice Admiral are you? And you are looking for a big mean cruiser to engage in typical Romulan treachery. So many choices, so little Zen 😉 If you do not yet have a Romulan character, I say… “What!” and “Why the hell not?” Check out “Devious Romulans”
Now in fairness, a Level 50 plus Romulan toon has a lot of options. She is allied with either the KDF or StarFleet so she has those faction’s cruisers to consider as well as the Romulan Republic’s line up of big meanies. This Head 2 Head is a showdown between my two favorites. A retrofitted version of the classic TNG scary Romulan, and the Reman Dreadnought Scimitar first introduced in Star Trek Nemesis.
There are also the Haakona and Ha’apax to think about as well.These two ships can separate like the Galaxy Class when equipped with the dual vector console. But enough about the ships I am NOT comparing today.
Romulan ships are different from Federation ships in many ways. The biggest difference is the use of Singularity Warp Cores instead of Matter-Anti-Matter Reactor cores of the KDF and Federation. Read about them, “The Black Hole of Warp Cores”. The Romulans also employ the use of a Battle Cloak on all of their ships, not just the raiders and escorts. Furthermore, Romulans tend to shy away from the same career based layouts on the ships. It is not as easy to tie a specific Romulan ship to a particular career path.
As a young broncin’ buck Romulan you will be introduced to the D’deridex at the shipyards when you are first promoted to full Commander (Tier 4). Once you make it up the chain of command to Vice Admiral, you have an opportunity to buy a retrofitted D’Deridex for your devious pleasures. The D’deridex is just so diabolical isn’t it? Think about all those TNG episodes with Picard in a showdown with a variety of Romulan commanders in D’deridex ships. It kinda gives you the chills doesn’t it? Oh the sinister and conniving Romulans, whatever are they up to? This ship is a classic, big and slow cruiser with an awful turn rate of 5.5. It just lumbers about looking for trouble. The big bird has a crew of 1500 and a 4/4 weapons layout. As I mentioned above, Romulan ships tend to deviate from the established norms of the KDF and Federation with regards to BOFF layout and console setup. This D’deridex is no different featuring a Commander chair for an engineer as expected but a Lt. Commander seat for both a science officer and tactical officer. The other two seats are reserved for a tactical ensign and a universal ensign. The possible BOFF abilities, some being mutually exclusive, work out like this: 5 engineer, 5 tactical, 4 science. It all makes sense though. Romulans are sneaky, and to be effective at lurking about you need good science abilities and a solid cloaking device. Check and check! Console layout on the standard retrofit is 3 a piece and the Fleet version adds an extra engineering console. If you want the fleet version, I would buy the standard version first for 2500 Zen then pay for a fleet module. this way you get the D’deridex for all eligible toons and you get the special console, projected singularity. You will pay an extra 500 Zen this way, but you get two ships, a fleet version and an account wide standard version.
The Dreadnought is available in three delicious flavors. The Scimitar which is most similar to the evil beast we all saw in Star Trek Nemesis. It is all in on tactical with 5 tactical consoles. The other two are the Tulwar which leans more heavily towards science with 5 science consoles, and my personal favorite, the Falcion with very equally distributed consoles 3, tac, 3 science and 4 engineering. All three have the same BOFF seating. A Commander at tactical, a Lt. Commander universal chair, a Lieutenant seat for both an engineer and a science officer, and a bonus universal Ensign station. The possible BOFF abilities some being mutually exclusive, work out like this: 6 engineer, 8 tactical, 6 science. Sweet! The dreadnoughts have a 5/3 weapons layout and a relatively quick 7 dps turn rate, relative considering this ship has a crew of 3000 pointy eared souls. Each ship has its own special console. The Scimitar has a console that allows for a cloaked barrage of death and mayhem like Shinzon’s version in Nemesis. The Falchion has a special console that allows for the activation of a secondary shield, and the Tulwar has the coolest thing of all, a console that allows the shields to remain up even while under cloak! That is a passive ability. I bought all three ships so I have all three special consoles. The three consoles together allow the ship to activate the deadly thalaron weapon which has a ridiculously long 12 second warm up that essentially disables the ship, before unleashing an attack that is too weak sauce for the all the effort and vulnerability required to fire it but it still works pretty effectively against hapless NPC ships. Oh, the dreadnought also has a hangar bay!
So which one is the superior vessel? The D’Deridex has a fleet version and no such version exists for the Dreadnought. With the fleet version the D’deridex compares well against the Reman designed badass. If the D’deridex is your ship of choice I would recommend spending the extra 500 Zen and get the fleet module and fleet it up! The 10% boost to hull and shields plus an extra console are well advised. I like the dreadnought. Even if you just buy one ship, the combination of quicker turning and a hangar bay is too juicy to turn down. The D’deridex is ideal for the player looking for a pretty standard cruiser experience. Big and slow, beefy hull and most likely equipped as a beam boat. The dreadnought can almost make it as a battle cruiser. A little high-end RCS console assistance to help turn the beast is in order, but it can lay down some evil hate with those 5 forward weapons. I have mine laid out as a single cannons up front and beams to the aft. I went with the Hyper Plasma launcher up front. The Romulan experimental beam array and console as well as two more plasma beams are in the aft. I can dish out the pain but the ship does suffer a bit under heavy attack. It is not quite as resilient under fire as the D’Deridex. The Falchion comes with special fighter drones that emulate attack fighters of the enemy. I upgraded to the fleet version which are resilient and powerful attackers. My engineer, Fleet Admiral Be’ina does well in both the Fleet D’deridex and the Falchion. The latter is more fun if not a little more complicated to fly.
I introduced a new benchmark comparison called BOFF Flexibilty. This is designed to show how flexible the BOFF seating is on a particular ship. With all the new ships and hybrid chairs and universal seats more common this is an important metric. It is especially useful when considering a C-Store ship’s utility, spread out over multiple toons on the account. It is a simple formula taking all the maximum possible BOFF ability combinations divided by the total number of BOFF abilities. As an example The most flexible ships are the KDF BOPs as they have all universal chairs. A B’rel Retrofit has 11 BOFF abilites but all eleven are universal. The B’rel retrofit has a max of 11 tactical, 11 engineering, and 11 science giving the ship a BOFF Flexibility Rating of 3.0. This compares to a ship with no hybrid or universal seating which would have a BOFF Flexibility Rating of 1.0. The absolute best possible rating, which does not exist in any ship thus far would be a ship with all Universal/Hybrid BOFF stations. That hypothetical ship would have a 4.0 rating. All that said the D’deridex has a BFR of 1.167 versus the Dreadnought’s 1.667. Overall Shinzon’s Revenge is the winner!
Of course no Head 2 Head is complete without that obligatory chart, take sniff here 🙂