Julien Neaves, Sci Fi Head Writer
Greetings fellow Trekkies, Trekkers, and casual consumers of Trek-related content. So I’ve been itching to do a new Star Trek article for awhile and I was brainstorming on what to write next. I’ve ranked all the films, the shows (pre-Discovery that is), the villains, and I did a five-part series for the 50th anniversary ranking the characters, funniest moments, technology, species and ships.
But in the more than five decades of the franchise there have been so many ships that it’s worth doing a second list. One caveat though—I will not be ranking ships that appeared only in the films, as I believe that is worthy of its own list. So with that out of the way and a Dyson Sphere-sized SPOILER ALERT let’s warp to my ranking of Twelve More Awesome Ships in Star Trek:
#12 U.S.S. Cerritos NCC-75567
The newest kid on the block, the U.S.S. Cerritos from animated series Lower Decks sports a design that harkens back to the Enterprise-D with a slight twist. It doesn’t break the mould nor is it very unique in terms of Starfleet ships, but it gets points for nostalgia. And the fact it was named after a small, little-known city in California is perfect for the show’s comedic, tongue-in-cheek tone.
#11 Andorian Battle Cruiser
We head to prequel series Star Trek: Enterprise for our next entry. Andorian vessels always reminded me of planes or modern shuttles with their aerodynamic look. Not the most attractive ships aesthetically, but they definitely look functional.
#10 La Sirena
It must have been quite the adjustment for Jean-Luc Picard to go from captaining Galaxy Class and Sovereign Class Starfleet starships populated by hundreds of people to helming a small alien ship (Kaplan F17 Speed Freighter owned and operated by Captain Cristóbal Rios) populated by a handful of people. La Sirena is built for speed and subterfuge and almost looks like it came from Star Wars or another Sci Fi franchise. Not the coolest design but it definitely stands out and fits the motley crew assembled in Picard Season 1.
#9 U.S.S. Enterprise NCC-1701-J
This future timeline ship appeared just once in Star Trek: Enterprise but that sleek spherical look is really attention grabbing. And it would be pretty cool to see it show up in the now future-set Star Trek: Discovery. #justsaying
#8 Ferengi D’Kora Class
In the early days of Star Trek: The Next Generation the plan was to make the greedy, misogynistic, broad-eared Ferengi the major antagonists. But they failed to make much of a splash and enemies like the Borg and the Romulans received much more of the spotlight. Because they were used so little in TNG and were not a military force in DS9 we did not see that many Ferengi vessels. But the fan shape, cobra-like design had a lot of character and visual interest which I enjoyed.
#7 Hirogen Hunter
My favourite Delta Quadrant species from Voyager is the hunting-obsessed Hirogen. And because of their culture it is no surprise that their ship, the Hirogen Hunter, looks like a warship ready to fire all cannons. It is a dangerous-looking ship for a dangerous species.
#6 U.S.S. Discovery NCC-1031
I’m just going to come out and say it—the first design for the Discovery made it look like a pizza cutter. You really can’t un-see it. Once you get over that, it’s a decent looking ship. Inspired by a design by Ralph McQuarrie, who did groundbreaking work for Star Wars and Battlestar Galactica, this version is less bulky and more sleek.
The design got a welcome flashy and ultra-futuristic update in Season 3 after the ship and crew time travelled to the 32nd century. It looks much less like a pizza cutter now, which is a good thing.
#5 Cardassian Galor-Class Ship
From TNG to DS9 the ruthless, xenophobic Cardassians were upgraded from minor foes to major adversaries. And that meant we got to see a lot more of their ships, including the manta ray-looking Galor-class cruisers, their primary warships. These vessels resonate power and authority but with a hint of style.
#4 Booker’s Ship
Redmangoreviews Senior Writer Sommer would not have forgiven me if I had left out this ship from my list. And to be honest it did not take much convincing. This shape-shifting scout ship owned and operated by super cool Kwejian courier Cleveland Booker is easily one of the most stylish and most visually interesting in the entire franchise. Seeing it change shape with lightning speed to avoid asteroids and other space phenomenon was easily one of the highlights of Discovery Season 3.
#3 Jem’Hadar Fighter
The Dominion was one the greatest threats the Federation ever faced and the Founders spread their wrath over the Alpha Quadrant via their devoted followers and shock troops, the reptilian Jem’Hadar. And these fearsome soldiers had some fearsome looking vessels as well. My favourite was the Jem’Hadar Fighter with its beetle shape and ominous glowing underside. Once you caught sight of one of these bad boys you just knew death and destruction was not too far away.
#2 Klingon Vor’cha Class
In my previous Trek ships list I included the Klingon battle cruiser and bird of prey. Well now I have to show some love for the Vor’cha-class attack cruiser. This is just one sexy, domineering-looking vessel, and a wonderful evolution of previous designs. The Vor’cha featured in several major conflicts during DS9’s run including the Klingon-Cardassian War, Federation-Klingon War, and the Dominion War. And if I were Captain Sisko I would feel pretty good to be going into battle with a squadron of these bruisers by my side.
#1 Romulan Bird of Prey (23rd century version)
For my final entry I go all the way back to The Original Series. Due to budget constraints we did not see that many alien vessels in TOS (not counting any remastered versions). There were several episodes where the crew would describe a vessel but it would never be shown onscreen. So it was a pleasant surprise to see the Romulan Bird of Prey in the excellent episode Balance of Terror. I loved the bird of prey detail and the sweet cloaking ability, which was quite novel at the time. Sadly the model disappeared after filming and we see the Romulans using Klingon D7 cruisers in The Enterprise Incident (in-story it is explained via a Klingon/Romulan alliance).
It may not the best-looking or most functional Trek ship but it just holds a special place in my heart. And my heart leapt for joy when I saw the design return for fan web series Star Trek Continues for its two-part finale To Boldly Go.
Julien “Jules” Neaves is a TARDIS-flying, Force-using Trekkie whose bedroom stories were by Freddy Krueger, learned to be a superhero from Marvel, but dreams of being Batman. I love promoting Caribbean film (Cariwood), creating board games and I am an aspiring author. I say things like “12 flavours of awesome sauce”. I can also be found posting about TV and movie memes, news and trailers on Facebook at Movieville. And to stay on top of all Redmangoreviews articles you can like and follow us on Facebook here.