yes i remember the USS Odyssey,but that was before the large fleet battles...they were upgraded against polaron weapons after and we did not see any getting destroyed.
I heard that the DS9 writers wanted that ship to be the Enterprise that was blown up. How much more shocking would it have been if it had been a ship that we had been following for seven years?
That was shocking enough as it was. Sure it was a guest star ship, but it was a Galaxy class, which was the baddest ship out there at the time. I was fully expecting them to get away and them was just like....
... when the Jem'Hadar ship kamikazed them.
Had the Enterprise been there, and been destroyed I probably would have screamed at the TV... and I don't know if that's good or not. Killing off the whole TNG cast would've been WAAAY too much, but it would've been equally as lame if all of them somehow lived. So perhaps using the guest star ship was the best move.