Well, the poll results are in and the Nihydron Destroyer is still on top with 45 plus percent of the vote. I flew that ship all last week doing reputation ‘runs’ for the new Temporal Defense Initiative. I also padded the T5-U mastery with my standard fare Romulan Patrol runs in the Carraya and Japori systems.
Before I go on about the ship, one of my pet peeves from the post a while ago, Top Ten Total BS Pet Peeves, is the inability to engage full impulse while in battle. The minute you engage full impulse, all power levels drop to near zero except engines. What is cryptic worried about here? No one will fly around killing people whilst in full impulse. The moment you fire weapons the ship leaves full impulse mode. The new reputation PVE, ‘Day of Doom’ is a perfect example of needing full impulse. After dropping the nuclear sandwich on the beast you have to fly back to the shipyard to get another core. One stray bullet and your ship drops out of full impulse; you are forced to either fight or trudge along at pokey speeds for what seems like a damn freaking hour. At full impulse your ship will only take a couple hits before you are out of range so let us decide when to drop out of full impulse already! After all, Cryptic claims we are the “captain” of these ships! And the wait time after the battle is over for the red alert to go away may as well be a effing month! Fix that shit already Cryptic! MMOs are naturally a grinding affair, this is one of those annoying UNNECESSARY grinds that a company that cares about the experience would eliminate. OK, enough of that 😉
I am working on the fourth tier of the new rep system and will begin acquiring the tech after I max my reputation in the system. I’ll be sure to write about the gear after I acquire it. In the meantime I got some real solid fly time in this little Nihydron ship. Enough to max out its mastery levels.
The Nihydron ships appeared in the ‘Year of Hell’ and ‘Dark Frontier’ episodes of Voyager. There is some question as to the status of the Nihydron Empire as they were involved in the Krenim Imperium’s time-tinkering. STO has brought the ships into the game via the coalition formed after the Vaadwaur gained control of a large part of the Delta Quadrant.
Anyway the ship is a cool looking vessel. It is not really a ‘destroyer’ per sé, but rather an escort. This ship is quite Klingon Raptor-ish. I think a ‘destroyer’ needs to fall in between a cruiser and an escort. The Breen Chel Grett is a prime example of this as it has a Raptor beating hull strength and four aft weapons slots, but turns nearly as good as a modest escort or KDF raptor. The veteran reward ships are described as destroyers but really are closer to an escort. Back in the day when they had “crew” count it was separated from escorts by its relatively cruiser-like 750 crew count and from cruisers by its nearly escort-like 14 dps turn rate. The Grett remains one of my favorite non-traditional ships. It has a hull that clearly falls in the dead middle between a cruiser and escort and offers the cruiser, 8 weapons layout, and 3 device slots. It turns better than any cruiser including the battle cruisers but falls a tad short of true escort turning, which I find to be a base of 15 dps or better. This escort-crusier middle ground relativity is a welcome addition to any fleet. It is what creates the ‘destroyer’ angle in my view.
All of that out in the open, the Nihydron Destroyer is simply, NOT a destroyer at all. It is an escort and measured as such it is pretty average. In T5-U trim it is a decent little escort. This guy sells on the exchange for a token sum under 3 million EC, so it compares well to the Tholian Meshweaver escort I wrote about earlier this year price wise. The Tholian ship has a weak hull and much quicker turn rate so it is off the list here today.
Make no mistake about it, this is no destroyer. It is a capable escort for an engineer or science toon looking for some fun in an escort for cheap coin on the exchange. A tactical captain won’t find better ships with the free token from any of the faction leaders such as Admiral Quinn and Chancellor J’mpok aside from the KDF and Romulans offering cloaking devices. The tier V level up ships are not upgradeable and this ship is. Veterans can use the veteran reward ship which is closer to a true ‘destroyer’ and offers either an upgradeable T5 or a T6 version.
I did not use my normal badass compliment of Mark XIV gear on this ship. At first it felt like it was total garbage, but remembering that it was ill-equipped compared to the Vorgon ship I reviewed last time, I realized it is a very capable little ship. I stuck with coalition type weapons to keep the theme. I don’t like the coalition weapons personally, but they are cheap on the exchange and the Admiral has plenty of ‘kick-your-ass’ escorts in the ‘garage’.
I think if I did it all over again, I would lose the RCS accelerator console in favor of another neutronium unit, and switch to a single cannon weapons layout on this guy. The 15 dps base turn is a little sluggish to keep dual cannons on target and the ship tends to get into hull trouble quickly. It has an escort style 0.90 shield modifier so the shields are not holding on too well. With only two consoles for science and a measly lieutenant science officer on the bridge, the hull is exposed often. As it is I flew this ship with dual beam banks up front and standard beam arrays aft. The ship used two instances of Beam Overload II along with a torpedo spread III and 2x tac team I. I can swap out FAW for one of the Tac teams for those times when I am facing lots of targetable torps, fighters, or those annoying Tholian webs.
There is plenty of tactical seating on this ship to support a near constant barrage of either scatter volley or rapid fire. There is no substitute for cannons when tactical seating is in ample supply. I use single cannons effectively on the KDF raptors and slowing turning feddie escorts and this ship is very similar stats wise to a raptor or escort.
This ship can use the coalition consoles from the Krenim Warship and Zahl Heavy Cruiser. I have neither of those ships so needless to say I didn’t try the consoles.
The final analysis on this ship is mixed. If you are looking for a cheap escort to compliment your garage full of science vessels and or cruisers, and you don’t have access to level up token ships or the event prize ships, this is a solid choice. It is a capable little escort and will provide an engineer or science officer with a sexy little sports car to play with; it offers up a reasonable amount of ‘I’m gonna kick your teeth in’ offense. It is upgradeable to T5-U and the tier 5 level-up token ships are not. The mirror universe ships are all inferior as they also are not upgradeable, but they are also much less money often trading well under 1 million EC on the exchange. Look closely at the mirro ships as they often have a few sublte console and or BOFF differences from their prime universe counterparts. read an old post about mirror ships here.
If you are a tactical captain and you have a garage full of badass C-store or event prize escorts, raiders, raptors, etc. this ship will only get you killed. That said, having this ship after level 60 if not only for a few minutes will grant you its use in the admiralty system and that alone could be worth the 2-3 million energy credits you’ll have to part with to get it.
This ship gets not one but two, count them two charts! The first compares it upgraded against ‘real’ destroyers and the second not-upgraded against T5 escorts and raptors, since that is what this ship really is anyway. I opened up the poll for additional voting if you voted last week or earlier you can now vote again as I’ll have to see which ship is next on the review board. Will it be the Malon Battle Cruiser or the APU Cruiser.? Click here to vote again the poll is at the bottom of the Batwing page.