STO Academy Forum

Full Version: Seeking build advice
You're currently viewing a stripped down version of our content. View the full version with proper formatting.
Pages: 1 2 3 4 5
Hi all,

First time posting here, I'm hoping someone can give me some advice. I'm running an Avenger set up as a beam boat but I don't think I'm getting close to the best out of it. The build I've got at the moment is:

I've seen a lot of Avengers set up with DHCs; I've never got on particularly well with them myself, I often end up thinking I'm pointing at the target when it's actually above me. I'm also not sure well DHCs would work on this particular ship, I'm not sure the turn rate is up to it. However, I'm willing to be proved wrong.

Regarding the BOff setup, I'm torn between having a Tac officer in the universal slot or switching for another Engineer or Scientist. On the one had I like having the two Tac Teams on top of the weapon buffs, but the ship doesn't seem to be holding together very well. Even with two EPtS slots my shields get knocked down and having only Hazard Emitters as a hull heal doesn't seem adequate. I used to run with EPtS 2 and Eng Team 1 on my engineer and Sci Team 2/HazEm 1 on a scientist, so I'd have a shield heal and a hull heal even if the teams put each other into cooldown, but that's not compatible with having Tac Team up as much as possible as far as I can see, so I'm trying an APtB build.

Regarding the limitations on what I can do...

1) I can't get a Fleet Avenger, much as I'd like one; my fleet only has a T3 shipyard and with only two active players we're not getting T4 any time soon, if ever.

2) Ditto for getting any fleet gear other than weapons - our starbase is at T2 on Science and Engineering and none of the other holdings have reached T1. Not that I have the dilithium to spare, I'm about to hit T5 Omega and the inevitable spending spree. I'm looking at MACO deflector with Adapted MACO engines and shields, plus ground sets for me and the away team.

3) On the subject of the rep systems, I'm T4 Omega, closing on T5, T1 Romulan, T0 Dyson and Nukara.

Can anyone suggest improvements I can make to get more out of the Avenger? I'm optimising for PVE and STFs, not PVP (I haven't finished the story missions yet with this toon, I decided to get some Omega gear before reaching the Borg episode this time).
Hello Dafmeister.

Looking at your loadout and boff abilities, it looks like you have the basics right, so kudos on that.

I have a couple of recommendations in mind, but I have a few questions first. I apologize if this sounds rudimentary, but I want to be thorough.
  1. You have your boff ability skills maxed out, right? You know, in your status window...your bridge officer abilities have full bars in each space ability, correct?
  2. Are you chaining EPTS so it runs constantly? Also, Tac Team - I assume you activate it whenever it comes off cooldown?
  3. How is Aceton Beam 3 treating you? do you find it useful?
  4. In what situations do you use Aux to battery 2? Is this an aux2batt build? If so, do you have 3 technician doffs?
  5. speaking of doffs, what duty officers are you using? If you list them in the "Desc & Notes" tab, it would be very helpful.
  6. What STFs/fleet actions are giving you trouble? ISE? CCE? Starbase 24?
If I had to guess, I'd say you're getting a ton of aggro due to FAW. In that case you can opt to increase your offense to take out your targets more quickly, increase your taking ability, or both. I will say right off the bat, though, that you should remove the VATA from tac and put another phaser relay there (you want the extra damage, trust me). Also, I'd bump the monotanium and put the assimilated module there. You now have an empty sci slot, so I'd grab a field generator off the exchange and use that. Field gens increase your shield capacity and will give you an immediate improvement to defense.

Hope that helps. If you answer the above, we can go on from there.

Thanks for your response. In answer to your questions:

1) Yes, all BOFF abilities are maxed

2) I have both EPtS slots assigned to a spacebar bind, so they activate as they come available. There is a dead zone where both are on cooldown, that seems to be one of the problem areas - when I'm doing STFs my shields have a habit of evaporating during the cooldown. Tac Team is also on the bind - I've changed the Tactical ability set so I only have a Tac Team 1 now, along with Torpedo Spread 3, FAW2, High Yield 2, Overload 1 and Target Shields 1 (which doesn't seem to have any effect from what I've seen).

3) I'm basically using Aceton Beam 3 because that's what the BOFF had in the slot. I like it in theory; in Khitomer space it's nice to be able to fire it at a cube and have some DPS going on it while dealing with probes, or keep the damage going on Donatra while she's cloaked, and a little extra punch is always good in Infected Space to kill transformers before the nanite spheres arrive after someone in a PUG inevitably blows a generator early, but I'm not sure it's worth the BOFF slot, or the skill points I've put into Particle Generators to boost it. I'm thinking of ditching it for DEM3.

4) I use A2B when I want a bit of extra punch from my phasers or that bit more power into the shields. A2B build? Honestly, I'm not sure what that would mean - I've seen the skill used in some Avenger builds so I'm trying it out. Might drop it for EPtS3. I'm embarassed to say I can't remember what doff setup I've got - I think there are 2-3 technicians involved, but they're only whites.

5) See 4. I'll add to the build notes and update next time I'm logged in.

6) In terms of STFs I'm only doing Infected space and Khitomer space, both on elite. I seem to die quite readily in both if I get close to a gate, but that seems to apply to most people from what I'm seeing on forums - it's not just me that goes from 50% hull to ball of fire in one hit. My main concern is that I'm not sure I'm pulling my weight in damage terms, other people seem to kill things a lot faster than me.

I'm in the market for a field generator, but I can't afford a high-end one at the moment. I've got a blue Mk XI emitter array I could use for the time being. I could drop the monotanium and put the assimilated module there. I'm not sure the SIF generator is doing much for me at the moment, perhaps I need an Engineering Team to take full advantage?

In terms of other equipment, I'm trying to decide which Omega space gear to go for. The MACO deflector seems best for me, with the shield and structural integrity bonuses, and I don't use abilites that would benefit from the mods on the other deflectors. I'm not sure about the other pieces - I like the higher turn rate mod on the Adapted MACO engines, but it's a Combat engine and even with my base engine power at 25 I'm getting a final power level of about 70, so I might get a better final speed and turn rate with the regular MACO engine or the Omega Force one. Unless I switch this warp core for one with WArrowS?

That said, I like the 2-piece Adapted MACO set bonus more than the others, so if I use the MACO deflector I'd need the Adapted shield and engine to get it.

I've got a bit of time to think about that one, in any case - I blew most of my expertise today getting the Mk XII MACO ground set. Any thoughts on the subject would be gratefully received.

Dropping the VATA seems a shame, I quite like the concept, but maximising the damage output of the phasers makes sense. I'm wondering if all the dual banks is the way to go - it's lots of firepower up front, but with only two arrays and the cutting beam there's not much outside that 90 degree arc. I'm wondering if I should drop some of the dual beams for regular arrays, for improved broadsiding. Which would also help deal with the ****ing swarmers in Storming the Spire (I'm working Dyson as well at the moment, once a day for the commendation).
I sincerely apologize for the wall of text below.

How long is the dead time between your EPTS activations? It shouldn't be longer than a second or two. When copy #1 is activated, it should run for 30 seconds and immediately put copy #2 on a 30 second cooldown. It might be that incoming fire is eating away at your shields faster than they can regenerate...not uncommon, since EPTS is a relatively weak shield ability. More on shield abilities below.

Aceton Beam's damage over time is pretty small. It's not a completely useless ability since it does reduce the effectiveness of your target's weapons, but - yes, I was going to suggest that - DEM3 would pack a bigger punch. It will drain your weapon power, but that can be mitigated if you ever decide to add a plasmonic leech console (there's also a Systems Engineer doff that reduces the drain for about 8 seconds, but it's ridiculously overpriced on the exchange). Yeah, DEM3 provides great spike damage. I think you'll like it.

The auxiliary to battery build (a2b or aux2batt) is a slightly advanced build that cuts the cooldown times in half for a majority of tac & eng abilities. It allows for great flexibility since each ability on your tray will act as if there are two. E.g. - you would only need one copy of EPTS to chain with itself. The aux2batt build requires two copies of the auxiliary to battery ability and three technician doffs (purple for optimum performance). Basically you activate the aux2batt ability when it comes off cooldown every 10 seconds, which effectively flushes aux power to the other three subsystems and reduces ability cooldowns.

You can get purple technicians for free if you have completed the Colonization doff mission chain in the B'tran cluster. After you finish the seventh mission in the chain, you can randomly find a "Support" mission in B'tran normal/VA. Critting that support mission rewards Ten of Ten, a very rare Borg Caitian Technician doff. The support mission is repeatable, so you can get three of them if you're patient and don't want to spend EC on the exchange.

Ah, I's the big NPCs that give you trouble. Yeah, the gate can be a real pain; it can take down most ships if they're not a dedicated tank. Hehe, wait until you see the Borg Queen in Hive Onslaught Elite! You're going to smash your keyboard.

Ok, here's what I recommend.

Yeah, the VATA is not bad, but you're better off putting it in engineering if you want to keep it. SIF Generators add a pretty small amount to your hull repair skill; like flow capacitors, you won't see a significant performance boost unless you use more than one. I think you'd be much better off using active hull heal abilities. Yes, ET is quite good, but it does conflict with Tac Team's cooldown time. Aux to SIF is a good engie hull heal ability, but it is fueled by aux power; depending on your aux levels, it may or may not be more effective than TT.

I would swap out Auxiliary to Battery 2 with Reverse Shield Polarity 2. RSP is a great "oh sheeit" button for those moments when you really need to recover your shields. I'd definitely put that in there, since you're going to need it when going toe-to-toe with the Gate. On my cruisers, I usually pop ET while RSP is active if my hull has also taken a beating. When the healing cycle is done, I resume my usual TT chaining.

If you're not running an aux2batt build, I'd use two Damage Control Engineer doffs. These useful doffs provide a nice chance to reduce emergency power cooldowns, meaning you'll only need one emergency power of each type on your tray for near 100% uptime. If you use DCE doffs, swap EPTS for EPTW. You will get some extra punch out of that. You can also use two purple conn officer doffs to reduce tac team's cooldown.

Hmmm, I wouldn't recommend target shields on this build. It does work (it's pretty awesome when it takes shields offline), but it also puts FAW and BO on cooldown. Torp Spread 3 is great, but don't overlook the usefulness of Attack Patern Beta. APB is quite powerful, especially when you line it up with TT and DEM (tons of spike damage). You are correct in your observation of the aft beam arrays...they aren't doing much for you, which is a drawback of forward-facing DBB builds. Most people put a cutting beam in back with some turrets. Turrets are weak, but at least they do something. If you like broadsiding, it's definitely a more "optimal" setup.

As for space gear sets: when it comes to choosing what set to use on a build, I look at the 2 piece or 3 piece set bonuses first and consider the individual equipment stats second. For example - if I'm running a torp boat, I'd choose the Adapted Maco in a heartbeat. I also like using it on builds that use aux. For something that requires a little more tankiness, I opt for the Borg 2 piece simply because its hull regen capabilities are awesome. For shields, Elite Fleet Resilient [ResB] is the absolute best for general purpose PVE. MACO shields are close if you don't have access them, but keep in mind MACO does interfere with plasmonic just a heads up if you ever get a PL console.

Warp core? Get one with the [AMP] modifier; you'll get an additional 3.3% damage for each subsystem with power at 75 or above. General rule of thumb is to get a core that channels your highest power setting into the one you want boosted. So if you're running max weapon power and want shield power boosted, yes, W-S is a great idea.

Overall, not bad. Room for improvement, but not bad. I think you have a better understanding of how things fit together than you give yourself credit for, and once you tinker with your build a bit more I think you'll be happy with the way it performs. Sorry again for the ridiculous wall of text, which I hope was of some help despite my rambling. If you have any questions, give a holler.
All very helpful, thank you.

The fleet hardware would be lovely, but it'll be some time before my fleet gets its holdings up that high, sadly. In the meantime, I've made some changes to equipment and Doff layout. I always had the cutting beam, for some reason I had a third phaser array shown on the build. I've now added the omega torpedo in place of the quantum, ditched the SIF and the monotanium and put on a 4th phaser relay and a field generator:

Doffs are listed in Desc. and Notes.

The Boffy layout isn't what I've got, it's something I'm thinking about. I've tossed aux2batt in favour of RSP2 and am thinking if dropping the EPtS slots in favour of ET1 and EPtW2. If I do that then I've got no shield heals other than RSP, so I'm thinking of switching the Universal doff station to Science and putting in ST2 and TSS1. It'll mean I have 3 teams tripping each other's cooldowns, though. Alternatively, I could take advantage of the two DCEs , put an Engineer in the Universal and have EPtW and EPtS, with only two Team abilities. Either way, I'll lose some Tactical capability.
Technically, you don't need to be in a fleet that has assets unlocked in order to buy them. You just need an invite to a starbase/mine/spire that does have them unlocked. You can purchase anything but ships from another fleet's holdings as long as your own fleet has the necessary provisions. FYI, Nerds of Prey created a channel called "NoP Public Service" where people can advertise and receive free invites, so there's always that if you don't want to wait. If you do use their channel, I've found it helps to be specific as possible (which faction, holding, tier, etc).

Yeah, you have a decision to make here: offense or defense? The build kinda hinges around that uni slot. I think you can get away with tac in the uni and EPTS in your engineering ensign ability slot, but that's just me.

If you put an engineer in the uni, you can use Auxiliary to Structural, which is a hull heal that doesn't share a cooldown with team abilities. A science officer opens up a nice range of possibilities in addition to defense (tractor beams are great). Regardless of how you go about it though, I wouldn't use Science's best for removing debuffs, and I think your build is probably better off without it.
Thanks for the info about the fleet channel, I'll have a look at it later. I may look at getting some fleet gear now, depending on what I can get access to.

I think I'll take the offensive route and revert to a Tac officer in the universal. I'm thinking the Boff layout would be APB3, Spread 2, FAW 2, High Yield 1 and either 2 Tac Team 1's or a Tac Team 1 and an Overload 1.

I'm also thinking about respecing my captain skills. I've got six points in Particle Generators, which are useless if I'm dropping Aceton Beam. If I drop them I'll have enough skill points to put Starship Maneuvers and Starship Targeting systems up from six to nine each.
Very good. If uni tac doesn't work out for you, you can always try sci or eng. In fact, you might want to do that anyway, just to get a feel for it.

Your captain skills are quite good. They're very well balanced. Those last three points don't give you as much of a boost as the first six, but then again a lot of people like to max the tac stuff (myself included). If you won't be using particle gens and can spare the re-spec token, I say go for it.

I hope you can get this build to where you're happy with it. She's a fine ship. Do keep us updated.
If you are going to work through the full Dyson Sphere rep, this build might be worth the effort. It utilizes both Dyson space sets.

The specialized consoles are somewhat optional Not that many folks use Isometric charge, for example, but I have fun with it. Since your ship has one less console, the only specialized console that I have that is a strong keeper is the assimilated console.

The Tac consoles will be replaced with fleet consoles as I can afford them. Fortunately, the Battlezone is a nice, non-boring way to rack up your daily dilithium haul.

Thanks, I'll certainly be looking at the Dyson gear as I advance up that tree. I've got an Isometric Charge console in my bank, I'll think I'll give it a try in place of the VATA.

Tomorrow I should have enough dilithium for an elite fleet warp core, that'll be an interesting new toy...
Pages: 1 2 3 4 5