Starships of the Cruiser Type (Typically Federation Vessels, but not limited so) which utilize cannons and turrets to create an escort like weapons feel rather than building to broadside with an assortment of beam arrays.
Necessary to accomplish this build will be access to Lt Cmdr Tactical or Universal bridge officer slots on the ship, and the appropriate tactical officer trained in Cannon skills to fill it.
Single Cannons are arrayed forward, while Turrets are arrayed aft with torpedo tubes being retained as desired. The wide forward firing arc of the single cannon (180 deg) ensures the constant ablity to engage and damage targets inspite of the cruiser's lower turn rate.
On Cruiser Type Ships able to equip Dual Cannons, placing one or two Dual or Dual Heavy Cannons in place of Single Cannons can be undertaken, but should be done so with respect to your ablity to keep the narrow Dual Cannon arc on target with the slower turn rate.
Principles of the Build:Edit
-"Escort Fighting" albit it on a much slower and less damaging scale (compaired to an escort). The cruiser platform allows for a much more survivable and support capable ships while giving the normally DPS sluggish Cruisers a respectable damage punch above the norm. This is dependant heavily upon the use of the corrisponding Cannon Attack skills assigned to your Tactical BOFFs (Cannon Rapid Fire, and Cannon Scatter Volley) and a Cannon Cruiser Build should always look to include copies of these skills whenever possible.
-"Economy of BOFFs" for primarially escort captains who desire to use a Cruiser in their stable of ships. Using a Cannon Cruiser will allow you to interchange your primary BOFFs between ships, rather than having to have seperate BOFFs for each ship.
-You will be trading some possibly important sci BOFF slots to gain the tactical slots necessary for this build, particularly when using a Lt. Cmder Universal slot. With this inmind be thoughtful which Lt Sci skills you chose, with a thought to Tractor Beams, and Tractor Beam Repulsors.
-Principly with cannon builds you desire to achieve maxium damage, therefore you want to move to within 5km range of your intended target before lighting off your cannon damage skills, while manuvering your ship to keep your target within the arc of your weapons. With the Single Cannon 180 deg arc, this is easy to do with even the most slow turning cruisers,
-'Cannon Broadside' is the term coined when keeping up a rate of turn such that the edge of your foreward Single Cannon's 180 deg arc is brushing your target enough to be able to effectively hold the range at a desired distance (neither closing nor opening) typically while orbiting said target. Combined with 180 dec arc torpedoes (Speical Item off Regent Class Fed Cruisers) this is extremely effective as a DPS cruiser tactic.