Romulan Ships: Late Early Era Analysis

Late Early Ships

(None of these ships are available until Middle era in Multiplayer)

Class - Desgn. --- Bvp ---- Yr
FF ----R-K4RB --- 63 ----- 5
FF ---- R-K4R ---- 60 ----- 5
FF ---- R-K5L ---- 104 ---- 7
FF ---- R-SKA ---- 102 ---- 5
FF ---- R-SKG ---- 92 ----- 5
CL ---- R-SPA* --- 125 ---- 5
CL ---- R-SPC* --- 114 ---- 5
CL ---- R-SPG* --- 110 ---- 5
CA ---- R-WER ---- 103 ---- 9
CA ---- R-SE ---- 80 ----- 3
CA ---- R-CE ---- 70 ----- 3
CA ---- R-KE* ---- 140 ---- 6
CA ---- R-KRB* --- 132 ---- 7
CA ---- R-KRCS* -- 183 ---- 9
CA ---- R-KRE ---- 115 ---- 7
CA ---- R-KRG ---- 103 ---- 3
CA ---- R-KRGB --- 126 ---- 8
CA ---- R-K7R ---- 150 ---- 4
CA ---- R-K7RB --- 166 ---- 7
CA ---- R-SUA* --- 192 ---- 7
CA ---- R-FHA* --- 174 ---- 8
DN ---- R-KVL* --- 170 ---- 7
DN ---- R-CON* --- 234 ---- 7
DN ---- R-K9R* --- 250 ---- 9

By late early, most hawk-style players can breath a sign of relief. They survived early, early to be met with some formidable new ships. Especially in years 5 and 7. Some of my favorite ships appear during this time - ships that I use in late era play. Here is a selection:


I am going to skip over frigates. Early early era produces some good, low bvp frigates. Late early produces high bvp frigates (You can get a WE for the price!) and you would be better served skipping them and moving right into the light cruisers, if possible.

Light Cruisers

R-SPA, bvp 125
1 Pl-G, 2 Pl-F, 5 P1s, 4 P3s - Cloak cost 15

By middle early era, expect to see me in a SparrowHawk series (I've captured a F-DN in a SPA in single player). The SPx is a versatile beast, made for the Plasma Ballet. The scout R-SPC is just a hair less powerful than the SPA, so I recommend it as well if you're out bid for a SPA. The SPx also has the advantage of having good power and lower cloaking costs, so you can slow and cloak if need be.

R-SPG, bvp 110
1 Pl-G, 2 Pl-F, 3 P1s, 4 P3s - Cloak cost 15

You're recommending a commando cruiser? Yes, it has been one of my favorite ships in Multiplayer (Mid/Late, 120ish bvp). It has basically the same power and arms of an SPA, but the advantage of 48 marines (96 max.) and 7 transporters. If you aren't going to use this for H&R attacks (concentrating on one component with all 7 transporters will get the job done even in v5.5), it will come in very handy in capturing enemy vessels and is virtually capture proof in return. In D2, don't H&R against this ship or a smart captain will capture you.

Heavy Cruisers

R-KE, bvp 140
1 Pl-R, 2 Pl-F, 4 P1s, 2 P3s - Cloak cost 15

Love your WE and don't want to give it up with all the new wizbang 2nd and 3rd generation ships now available? Well, look no further than the KingEagle. The main advantage of the KE over the WE and WB+ is its Plasma F launchers. This allows you to hold something in reserve for when the enemy decides now is the time for an overrun. If you have the prestige or bvp, however, you may want to skip the KE and head right for the king of 1st generation ships, the KVL dreadnought (see below).

R-KRB, bvp 132
2 Pl-S, 3 P1s, 4 P2s - Cloak cost 20

The KRB falls between the light cruiser hawks and the heavy cruiser hawks as a 2nd generation ship. However, it's high cloak cost, higher movement cost, and low phaser compliment makes me still lean toward an SPA over this ship. It also lacks an NSM.

R-KRCS, bvp 183
2 Pl-S, 2 Pl-F, 2 Pl-D, 5 P1s, 4 P2s - Cloak cost 20

The KRCS comes late in the era at year 9. Although it has weaker shields when compared to the Hawk heavy cruisers, the KRCS carries Plasma D for drone/fighter defense. Expect to see these carry a high demand for Romulans on the borders of Federation and Klingon space. In fact, with Plasma D, expect to see some captains pass up the Hawk ships for a KRCS. (Note to multiplayer users. If the bvp is 190-210 mid/late, you should definitely consider a KRCS to combat drone/fighter races. I've already started practicing with this and the KCR - both are born drone/fighter killers!)

R-FHA, bvp 174
2 Pl-S, 2 Pl-F, 5 P1s, 4 P3s - Cloak cost 18

The FHA/SUA and the later NHK are virtually interchangeable. FHA is the start of the 3rd generation heavy cruiser Romulan Ballet with heavy and light plasma mounted on both sides of the ship, perfect for high-speed oblique angle attacks. It's slightly less powered than the SUA, has a smaller crew, and a few less internals, but otherwise is a steal at bvp 174.

R-SUA, bvp 192
2 Pl-S, 2 Pl-F, 5 P1s, 4 P3s - Cloak cost 20

Basically, the SUA is a slightly scaled down version of the NHK. It sports the same heavy weapons with a few less phasers. Once you get your SUA, it will be hard justifying the upgrade to the NHK (save pennies for a KCN). Special note: The SUA can launch 2 shuttles at once (a rare thing for a Romulan vessel). Remember that fact when weaseling and using suicide shuttles. A quick overrun on a weasel-stopped enemy, followed by a drop of 2 suicides, and they will think they're being attacked by a Gorn.


R-KVL, bvp 170
2 Pl-R, 2 Pl-F, 6 P1s, 2 P3s - Cloak cost 20

DJSatane and Overon say it all on their buglist page ( ):
"R-KVL (available in Middle/Late Era {multiplayer}) is supposed to be balanced against ships for 170 BPV? Most of other ships inside 170 BPV even in LATE era will have serious problem against that ship. R-KVL has 53 power, 36 shields all around, 2 R's, 2 F's, 6 phaser 1's, 2 phaser 3's and 20 armor plus cloak. Now that is damn impressive at 170 BPV! Against ships that cannot put enough drones in the air that ship is unbalanced. Use the Gorn as their traditional enemy as an example. Let that R-KVL starcastle, it's got so much power, plasma cannot easily penetrate it's shields. In fact when the Gorn (ship at 170BPV) launches plasma, the R-KVL with a ton of shield reinforcement can cloak and a gorn ship at the equivalent BPV won't be able to penetrate it's shields. Further, take Gorn cheapest Dreadnought which costs 205BPV (35 BPV more than R-KVL!), that ship does not even contain half the fire power of R-KVL."

If the KVL has weaknesses, they would have to be slow acceleration, slow turn rate, and only 2 shuttles max. It is possible to pick a KVL apart in other ships, especially if the KVL captain doesn't know where his cloak is.

R-CON, bvp 234
1 Pl-R, 2 Pl-S, 9 P1s - Cloak cost 30

One would think this dreadnought with it's higher BVP would be a good upgrade over the KVL. But frankly, it has poor drone/fighter defense and high cloak costs for LESS firepower than the KVL. If you want to upgrade, skip it for the...

R-K9R, bvp 250
1 Pl-R, 2 Pl-G, 2 Pl-F, 12 P1s - Cloak cost 30

While still somewhat weak in drone/fighter defense, this ship boasts impressive plasma. It may not have the punch of 2 Plasma Rs, but it can Mizia plasma at you just like the late era KHK. Slightly more nimble than the CON or KVL, it's also possible to ballet with this ship. Its major problem is timing, the K9RB upgrade comes out the next year with Pl-S instead of Pl-G. Just 3 years after the K9R, the "King" KCN makes its debut with it's incredible array of plasma and defensive systems.


My current power settings for plasma ballet:

1 - Move
3 - Weapons
5 - Shields
1 - Tractors
2 - ECM

First, speed is life. Next, ECM is above weapons. I'd rather have a shift of +1 or +2 when moving away from an opponent than have weapons charging (some of them will be charging and I can adjust when its safer). This is now critically true with Erratic Maneuvers being nerfed. Also, I've had several players tell me they watch for ECM to drop in a Hawk ship to determine if plasma or pseudo has been launched... with this setup, the ECM WILL NOT DROP no matter what you unload on them.

Many of the tips I could give at the end of this article can actually be found here:

Mid and Late early are exciting times. Romulan captains get all kinds of new toys to combat the hordes at the gates. Once the SPx series show up in year 5, players can start really moving out against the enemy. Just two years after that a Romulan captain can get his hands on a relatively low cost, high power KVL.

Good luck, Captain!