Not all fans of Star Trek timelines enjoy the Arena, but all veteran players will agree that this aspect of the game is a great way to collect and upgrade new ships. Whether we like it or not, we have to break into the higher ranks of all three divisions in order to obtain a decent number of ship fragments per day. And if we’re going to do it anyways, why not have some fun while we’re at it?
The beginning of any player’s career in the Arena should be a breeze. You only have 10 battle attempts per day so it can take several weeks to work your way through inactive accounts or opponents who don’t properly configure their battle stations. Once you reach the top 15,000, however, you’ll no longer be able to use just any ship or crew. You’ll need more specific combinations and you’ll also have to start using your abilities at just the right time.
How the Arena Works
In the Arena, your designated ship and crew go up against those of another player in a battle that can last up to 3 minutes, but will usually take just over 20 seconds to complete. During the engagement, you cannot control the positioning of your ship, but you can use its “battle cards” and the abilities of your crew.
These cards and abilities will usually boost one of three stats – Attack, Accuracy, or Evasion – all of which are fairly self-explanatory. To make the most of the cards at your disposal, you must activate them at the correct time, rather than in a randomized sequence. For example, Attack should be boosted alongside Accuracy in order to ensure that the enemy ship does not evade your improved fire. Conversely, you should use Evasion just before your opponent activates a powerful offensive combo in the hopes that you will avoid some of the incoming damage.
In addition to the three main stats, ships and crew can have special statuses. Ships, for example, can feature three special triggers – Position, Cloaking, and Boarding. Position increases your accuracy, while Cloaking allows your ship to briefly disengage from battle (and regenerate Shield or avoid powerful combos, for example) and Boarding deals damage to the enemy’s hull directly (thus bypassing their Shield).
Some crew have special bonuses that are triggered by these statuses. Commander Kang, for instance, is one of the best characters to use in the Commander Division because he offers a significant boost to Attack when Cloaking is activated. For the most part, crew is actually considered to be more important than the ship you choose in the Arena. They not only have powerful abilities, but they also improve the stats of your ship and can respond to special triggers.
The Best Setup for the Commander Division
The 2-star Klingon K’Vort Bird-of-Prey has held the title of the best ship in the Commander Division for an extremely long time, closely followed by the Suurok Class Combat Cruiser. Both of these ships have very high stats for their respective groups, but the Klingon vessel has the better special trigger – a cloaking device. The two characters best suited to maximize the potential of this ship are Commander Kang and Mirror “Smiley” O’Brien.
While Kang’s mix of abilities can boost a cloaking ship’s attack by a staggering +9 (more than any other 2- or 3-star crew) for 8 seconds, O’Brien increases your evasion by +5 for 10 seconds and instantly repairs your Shields by 15%. What’s more, the latter offers an impressive 1030 Evasion when fully geared, which can make your ship difficult to target even when no abilities are used. So long as you activate O’Brien’s card right before you cloak, you can regen about 50% of your shield before the cloak expires. Most of the times, though, the Klingon Bird-of-Pray will simply melt the opponent on the first burst fire.
The Best Setup for the Captain Division
To break into the top 100 of the Captain Division, you need a fully upgraded Borg Sphere 878, which grants an additional crew slot (for a total of 4) as compared to most of the other 3- and 4-star ships. Although the Sphere has a rather useless special Position trigger, its optimal crew includes Ardra, T’Mir, Undercover O’Brien, and Rura Penthe Reed, who can make up for this deficit.
Two of the Sphere’s battle cards promote regen. While Borg Adaptation can repair the ship’s hull by 15%, Activate Dispersal Field boosts its shields by 20%. The stat improvements on these cards are mediocre, at best, but the latter can be used defensively in order to prolong a battle. The crew, on the other hand, is mostly focused on offensive stats. Ardra offers +7 Accuracy and a staggering +18,000 Crit Bonus, T’Mir boosts your attack by +7 and instantly deals +200% damage, Rura Penthe Reed features one of the strongest attack increases (at +9) for a 4-star character, and even O’Brien, who offers +7 Evasion, has a bonus ability that adds +18,000 Crit Bonus.
The Best Setup for the Admiral Division
The Legendary D’Kora Krayton is currently the uncontested leader in the Admiral Division. Although other 5-star ships can be quite useful, nothing really compares to this vessel’s deadly mix of instant damage and cooldown reduction. The best crew can vary slightly, but will usually include Captain Killy, Locutus of Borg, (the recently added) Garth of Izar, and either Ardra or Undercover O’Brien.
The main weapon of this stunning Ferengi ship is its Fire Electromagnetic Pulse card, which deals an instant 350% damage and boosts accuracy slightly. Of equal importance is its Power Surge ability, which decreases all cooldowns by 6 seconds when fully charged and can double your total damage output. The crew is primarily selected for high burst damage and will also benefit from the CD reduction. Captain Killy increases attack by +10 for 6 seconds and deals 400% damage instantly, while Garth of Izar boosts damage by +8 for 10 seconds and also fires a deadly 400% instant damage. Locutus of Borg improves attack by +9 for 10 seconds on a 12 second cooldown, while either Ardra or O’Brien can be used for their amazing Crit Bonus.
Especially with the Admiral Division, however, the choice of crew can vary among the top 100 players. Even if you don’t have all the characters recommended here, you can often find replacements that may not be quite as powerful, but that will earn you a better rank. At the end of the day, the higher you climb, the more ship fragments you get, which is what actually counts. Plus, when you get a hold of this crew and manage to max it out, a little practice is all you need in order to have a shot at top 10 in any division!