I agree. Correctly balanced stats is what I would like to see, though I am just warning against P2W in case some are looking for better (than standard ships) Premiums.
Again, part of the issue here is how the ships are presented.
Premium ships look good compared to un-purchased (ie: synergy 1) free ships, but when I compare them to my ships that I have at full or near-full synergy, Premiums look terrible. I don’t know how clearly this will come out, but here’s how the Dwarf 2 compares to its two Premium rivals.
Notice right out of the gate that my Dwarf 2, even with nothing equipped, is sporting a higher Survivability. This comes from superior Resistances.
So how do they compare otherwise?
The Dwarf 2’s main bonus is the +50% range on Recon modules. Frankly, this ability is a must-have as far as I’m concerned, and it’s why I don’t enjoy flying the Elf in Tier 3. Being able to tag a target from over 5km away is an awesome ability!
The Scout replaces 1 Large missile for 4 mediums. Personally, I prefer larges on Interceptors because it lets me drop minefields, though I accept the Scout is probably better as a roving hunter-killer, especially with +5% main weapon damage.
The Wasp… well, it’s missile payload, reduced reload speed for missiles and extra passive slot makes it a very strong ship. Not enough to completely turn the tide of a match, but I can certainly see why people might favour to the Wasp over the Dwarf 2.
But here’s how I see it personally. The Scout should have the same survivability as the Dwarf 2 because it is essentially trading its support abilities for direct damage. The Dwarf 2 is, ironically, a better scout than the Scout, and is also better at area denial, but if the Scout had better survivability I wouldn’t go so far as to say it was better - just better at a certain role.
This is where I think Premium ships belong; offering variant play options. There’s no reason they couldn’t throw another set of Premiums into every faction and have two inty, two fighter and two frigate per tier, each having its own role to play.
The Pirates, in my opinion, should be more like the Scout is now - sacrificing defense for direct damage capability. That is harder to balance because it becomes an apples and oranges affair - are they “Pay to Win” because they can alpha strike better than any free ship, or are they balanced because they will die where a free ship could survive?