Posts Tagged ‘ pve ’

Ninja Ratting

As you may already know, ratting in nullsec is one of the fastest ways to gain security status. However, for those not in a nullsec alliance, nullsec ratting can be quite challenging, as not only must they have enough DPS and tank to kill NPCs, but they must also be able to stay (relatively) safe while doing so.

Several ship classes can meet these criteria to greater or lesser degrees, but one greatly neglected type is the stealth bomber. Stealth bombers are cloaky T2 frigates that have battleship class firepower but less EHP (effective hit points) than rookie ships. The cloakiness and impressive firepower clearly are desirable traits, yet the paper thin hull poses quite a problem.

The most obvious way to attempt to solve this is to speed tank: simply orbit the NPC battleships at around 50 km, fire torpedoes at them, and use a microwarpdrive to stay away from the battleships’ smaller escorts. However, this method is very ineffective, as NPC cruisers hit MWDing bombers quite easily, and one mistake will put a stealth bomber in armor or hull (and repairing can be difficult while deep in nullsec).

So at first glance, this lack of tank appears to make stealth bombers unsuitable for ratting. But the stealth bomber has a special method of tanking that few others have: stealth tanking (yes, I coined the term). Stealth tanking is strategically using your cloak to prevent enemies from getting a chance to even target you (obviously this does not work against Sleepers, who can see through cloaks). This takes advantage of the fact that stealth bombers have no module/targeting reactivation delay after uncloaking, and can recloak after fifteen seconds. The concept is quite simple, but some quirks in NPC targeting behavior make this more complicated than it appears. Here is how to ninja rat.

Choosing an appropriate ship. Select a stealth bomber with damage bonuses against the NPCs that you plan on killing. For example, use a Purifier on Sansha rats and a Hound on Angel rats. Fit a target painter to increase DPS and a MWD to help you escape bubbles and increase your mobility.

Warping. Once you have reached a suitable nullsec system for ratting, set a custom warp distance of 10 km (do this by right clicking on your “warp to” button and changing the default from 0 to 10,000). Why 10 km? Warping to 0 can be dangerous, as everyone lands at that range. Warping to 100 km is another favorite warp range, and it places you too far away from the rats. And warping to anywhere between 20 and 70 km will usually land you amidst the asteroids, causing you to decloak and start bouncing off of asteroids. Warping to 10 km, on the other hand, places you just inside the asteroid belt’s circle while staying clear of the very center.

Landing in a belt. If you get decloaked upon warping in at 10 km, move away and recloak as soon as possible. If the belt has scrambling frigates (“loyal” frigates for Sansha), then move on to another belt. If you get scrambled, you will die nearly instantly. If you arrive at a belt and find that you are too far away, you can decloak, MWD closer, and recloak after 15 seconds before getting targeted (I will explain why in an upcoming blog post).

Attacking. Once you cloaked are in a belt with battleship rats, you can begin attacking. Uncloak, fire two volleys, and recloak right after the second volley is fired. Wait 15 seconds before repeating the process. You can cloak while your second volley is still en route to the target because your launcher and painter still finish their cycles after recloaking. However, you will need to get to within around 30 km of the rats, because if the launcher and painter finish their cycle before your torpedos hit, the torpedoes will simply vanish without inflicting any damage.

Ninja ratting is a fairly exacting art, as you cannot simply warp in, activate all your modules, and wait for the NPCs to die. But what benefits do stealth bombers have in comparison to other ships? Here are a few:

Safety. Stealth bombers, like their covert ops cousins, are among the best ships for getting through gatecamps. In addition, if you are jumped while ratting, it is quite easy to get to safety by cloaking and warping off. You can also scout out areas while cloaked, which other ships cannot do.
DPS.
Stealth bombers can kill most NPC battleships in 6 volleys. In addition, NPCs do not repair damage taken while you are cloaked.
Speed.
Being frigates, stealth bombers can outrun larger ships both in and out of warp.
Low cost. First, cheaply fit stealth bombers cost a mere 30 mil ISK, a price comparable to T1 cruisers. Second, they only use three torpedoes per volley; at 6 volleys per battleship and 100 ISK per torpedo, you only spend 1800 ISK per battleship on ammo. And third, repair costs for stealth bombers are extremely small, around 40,000-80,000 ISK to fully repair hull and armor damage.

In conclusion, if you are planning on ratting in hostile nullsec, consider using stealth bombers, as they are safe, powerful, fast, and cheap.

I hope this guide has been helpful; please leave any thoughts, suggestions, and questions in the comments below.

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C’est La Vie

Some days are good…and others aren’t.

The past two weeks, a series of unfortunate events has completely drained my wallet and possessions.

Last week, I undocked from a station in a hauler and died to invisible timers before I could redock; the dropped items were scooped by someone while I was sitting in station. The loss was painful, as not only was 300 million’s worth of T2/meta 4 modules in it, but also all my month’s earnings via PvE and PvP (loot and salvage). That was what prompted this outburst.

Then earlier this week, I was hauling some newly-bought T2 frigates and their fittings to lowsec. Forgetting that my security status was -2.01 due to a recent kill, I stupidly entered a 1.0 system that happened to be on my route. Pop went 80 mil. As I warped out in my pod, I could already see nearby pilots pouncing on the wreck. It was an ironic loss, as I had just proposed a mechanism that would prevent such accidents (for the few who dislike the idea of warning messages: seriously, how difficult is it to just click “Do not warn me again”?).

The net result of the two hauler losses was that my wallet was completely empty and I had no income to fill it. But that was not all.

Yesterday, I was traveling through lowsec when I saw a Tempest on a gate. I informed some friendly pirates, in case they were interested. One of them aggressed him in a battleship, but popped while the Tempest was in structure. Another of his mates arrived in a Rokh and aggressed as well. A Guardian then appeared and began to remote repair the Tempest. Meanwhile, the Rokh started dying. To try to save the Rokh, I came in as well in a neut Dominix. But the sentry guns tore apart my drones, and the Rokh died. Under fire from the sentries and the Tempest, I died shortly afterwards. It was the first battleship I have lost since I was a noob ratting in Providence (well, actually, I did lose an Apocalypse due to autopiloting into Gallente highsec space (I am an Amarr missioner, so the Gallente hate me)).

Upset, I decided to run some level 4 missions to regain some ISK; my wallet was down to 30 mil. I easily cleared the first room of the mission in my usual PVE Abaddon. Upon entering the second room, however, I got warp scrambled. Not a big deal, right? Except…my internet connection died. And stayed dead for over an hour. When I logged back in, I found myself in a pod (to help me feel better, the insurance company kindly gave me a noobship with an entire unit of tritanium). I re-entered the mission deadspace to recover what I could from my wreck but found that a ninja salvager had already salvaged the first room and looted my wreck from the second. Bye bye Abaddon.

The two hauler losses and two battleship losses have completely devastated me. As of right now, I have 50 mil in wallet and no battleships left. So I will have to run level 3 missions in a battlecruiser until I have enough ISK to replace my ships. I will also have to put PvP on hold until my wallet is a bit happier. It is quite disappointing, as I was hoping to become the 5,000th best PvPer on Battleclinic by the end of this year (I am currently at 18,000). Oh well. C’est la vie.

Having Fun in Eve Online

Logging into Eve last week, I began wondering what to do. Lowsec was too blobby for effective solo PvP, missions were dull, ninja salvaging was too much work…I found myself sitting in a station, listening to the annoying, omnipresent choirs at Amarrian stations and practicing the fine art of ship spinning. So after disabling “Load station background” in the settings (to stop myself from ship whirling and twirling), I set out to keep myself preoccupied in Eve.

The Ship Quiz

Eve@phase’s Ship Quiz was not only fun, but it was also productive. I got 85%. I learned that a Skiff is an exhumer (not a T1 mining barge), a Rhea is a Caldari jump freighter (never seen one before), and a Vargar is a Minmatar Marauder (I don’t recall seeing one – it certainly is not as popular as other marauders). Aside from the Vargar, the results seem to show that I am not too familiar with the industrial/carebear aspect of Eve.

Ooh, Pretty Laz0rz

With ship spinning no longer an option, I decided to run a level 4 mission in an Abaddon. Halfway through, I got bored, so I went back to the station, and put various frequency crystals in my guns. The pretty colors kept me sufficiently entertained for me to finish the mission.

Pretty Laz0rs_1

Pretty Laz0rs_2

Concordoken-ing Remote Reppers

With the mission done, I wandered over to a trade hub to fit out some new PvP ships to replace the ones I’d lost. Then I saw this in local (name changed):

RR_Guy > anyone need armor?

I grinned ecstatically and quickly fit an Executioner (40k ISK) with 1 Gatling Pulse Laser I (3K ISK) and the first frequency crystal I found in my hangar. Then I undocked.

00sage00 > RR_Guy, i need armor
RR_Guy > no you dont!
00sage00 > in 1 sec i will
RR_Guy > XP
RR_Guy > who are you aggroed to? lol
00sage00 > i’m stealing the can
00sage00 > D: no rep?

RR_Guy kindly started repping me. But I didn’t steal the can. I didn’t pewpew another player. I didn’t get any aggro. I shot Concord.

I instapopped. RR_Guy, guilty of assisting me in criminal acts, exploded seconds later.

RR_Guy > god damnit
00sage00 > rofl
RR_Guy > sage just caused his corp a few war decs

(A week later, I still don’t have a wardec :[ )

I redocked, and began preparation for yet another fiendishly fun Eve project:

The Attack of the Industrials

Various PvP industrial fits have been floating around on Battleclinic, such as this “Battle Bestower”. I wasn’t very impressed; the fits were quite weak. Was the Bestower the best PvP industrial out there? Or was there something better? I started to compare stats.

Top Four PvP Industrials (the Sigil was a close fifth)

Stats Mammoth Bestower Badger II Iteron Mark V
Powergrid 80 70 80 85
CPU 750 750 1000 850
Slots 2/5/4 2/4/4 2/6/3 2/5/5
Speed 110 125 115 110
Tank HP 1094 1173 548 1368
Capacitor 562.5 687.5 625.5 750
Sensor Str. 8 9 13 12

According to the chart, the Iteron Mark V had the best combat potential. With this newfound knowledge, I created a mindbogglingly amazing fit for such a formidable combat beast (Battleclinic):

[Iteron Mark V, Iteron Mark V: THE BEST PVP Industrial]
Small Armor Repairer II
Small Armor Repairer II
Magnetic Field Stabilizer II
Energized Adaptive Nano Membrane II
Energized Adaptive Nano Membrane II

1MN Afterburner II
Warp Scrambler II
Stasis Webifier II
Small Capacitor Booster II
Small Capacitor Booster II

Light Neutron Blaster II, Caldari Navy Antimatter Charge S
Small Energy Neutralizer II

Medium Auxiliary Nano Pump I
Medium Auxiliary Nano Pump I
Medium Auxiliary Nano Pump I

Stats
6,980 EHP
70.6/61.8/61.8/47.2 resists
127 hp/s repaired, 153 hp/s repaired with heat
Cap stable with neut off, 8m 12s with neut on
45 DPS, 51 DPS with heat, 101 alpha
183 m/s

So what’s so amazing about this fit? Not only is this ship better than any other industrial, it’s also better than T1 frigates. This dual-repped ship has a tank stronger than that of any T1 frigate, and is cap stable with the cap boosters.

DPS is a bit low, but that’s ok. Active tanked frigates will have their cap neutralized, so they will slowly go down. And buffer tanked frigates will also die.

Here’s an example: a cookie cutter active tanked Rifter has 3,686 EHP against your blaster’s damage (5.75 thermal, 8.05 kinetic). Your neut will vaporize its cap in 20 seconds, probably before you even break through its shields. So it will take you 82 seconds at 45 DPS to pop him with Caldari Navy Antimatter. The Rifter, on the other hand, will not even be able to break your tank (109 inflicted – 127 repaired).

What about a fully gank fitted blaster Incursus with 211 DPS and 1,681 EHP? At 84 DPS (211 inflicted – 127 repaired), it’d still take it 83 seconds to kill you. You could kill it in 37 seconds. In fact, even if your gun somehow broke and you didn’t kill him after 37 seconds, he’d probably run out of ammo (who would’ve thought that killing an industrial took a couple thousand rounds of ammo?).

The Iteron also has a few things that frigates don’t have:
1) The “hauler” and “stealth” tags on Battleclinic.
2) Tons and tons of cargo space. You can have nearly infinite ammo, cap booster charges, and nanite repair paste in your spacious 7,500 m3 cargohold.
3) The element of surprise. Frigates don’t expect a industrial to fight back and pwn them.
4) The all-important LOL factor. This industrial rates 9.3 on the LOL factor, and a killmail earned with this fit would simply go off the charts.

I haven’t been able to use this ship yet as I don’t have Gallente Industrial V, but soon it will be ready. Carebears beware: the Can-Flipping Iteron of Death, Doom, and Destruction, is coming Soon™ to a belt near you.

Iteron of Death, Doom, and Destruction

Tengu: PVE – Passive Shield, Heavy Missile

Inspired by Karox Lominax’s guide to the Tengu (T3 Strategic Cruiser), I took a jab at making a PVE fit and posted it on Battleclinic. Please let me know what you think. :)

Fit:

[Tengu, PVE – Passive Shield, Heavy]
Shield Power Relay II
Shield Power Relay II
Shield Power Relay II
Shield Power Relay II

Caldari Navy Magnetic Scattering Amplifier
Caldari Navy Magnetic Scattering Amplifier
Caldari Navy Magnetic Scattering Amplifier
Thukker Large Shield Extender
Thukker Large Shield Extender
Thukker Large Shield Extender
Thukker Large Shield Extender

Heavy Missile Launcher II, Thunderbolt Fury Heavy Missile
Heavy Missile Launcher II, Thunderbolt Fury Heavy Missile
Heavy Missile Launcher II, Thunderbolt Fury Heavy Missile
Heavy Missile Launcher II, Thunderbolt Fury Heavy Missile
Heavy Missile Launcher II, Thunderbolt Fury Heavy Missile

Core Defence Field Purger II
Core Defence Field Purger II
Core Defence Field Purger II

Tengu Defensive – Supplemental Screening
Tengu Offensive – Rifling Launcher Pattern
Tengu Electronics – Emergent Locus Analyzer
Tengu Engineering – Capacitor Regeneration Matrix
Tengu Propulsion – Gravitational Capacitor

Hobgoblin II x5
Warrior II x5

Stats:
172,008 EHP
76.2/91.6/87.4/78.9 resists
Defence: 1583 ehp/s
Cap stable at 40%
320 DPS, 1650 alpha
231 m/s

Description:
Disclaimer: I don’t actually have a Tengu yet. So this is all theoretical; I’d appreciate feedback from anyone who actually flies one.

This fit is intended for acting as a tank in level 5 missions.

The Tengu, being Caldari and a T3 ship, has an amazing tank. Many of the fits on Battleclinic put an active shield tank on it, which is a better way for PVP than a passive shield tank. But of the passive shield tanks, there is this one: http://eve.battleclinic.com/loadout/20661-Tengu-4000-DPS-Tank.html, which advertises a 4,000 DPS tank. However, that’s only 4,000 DPS against thermal damage – the Tengu’s highest resist.

My fit here is similar, except that it has three different subsystems: Tengu Offensive – Rifling Launcher Pattern instead of Accelerated Ejection Bay, Tengu Electronics – Emergent Locus Analyzer instead of CPU Efficiency Gate, and Tengu Propulsion – Gravitational Capacitor instead of Intercalated Nanofibers. Let me explain why I chose the various subsystems for this fit.

Tengu Defensive – Supplemental Screening. This is a very obvious choice, as it gives the largest base shields and armor, has a shield HP bonus, and has two mid slots. The Adaptive Shielding subsystem has lackluster shield HP and recharge, only 1 mid slot (but 1 high), and the largest signature radius of all the defensive subsystems. The Amplification Node has a shield booster bonus and less HP/s than Supplemental Screening. Warfare Processor has even less HP/s and siege warfare link bonuses.

Tengu Offensive – Rifling Launcher Pattern. This is a bit less obvious. All offensive subsystems add 5 highs and 1 mid. The Accelerated Ejection Bay adds 5 missile hardpoints and has missile bonuses (somewhat like a Cerberus), the Covert Reconfiguration adds 4 (with one slot for a cloak), the Magnetic Infusion Basin has 5 hybrid turret hardpoints and bonuses (like an Eagle), and the Rifling Launching Pattern has an ECM bonus and a few missile bonuses and the ability to have 5 light drones (like a Rook). For PVE, a cloak is fairly useless and hybrids will drain cap and make a passive shield unfeasible. I chose the Rifling Launcher Pattern over the Accelerated Ejection Bay for several reasons. First of all, the drones can come in handy against smaller NPCs. The range bonus for the Accelerated Ejection Bay is not as useful when you are already hitting at 84 km. With Scourge missiles, the Accelerated Ejection Bay has slightly more paper DPS (320 vs 312). However, that’s kinetic damage, which few mission NPCs are weak against. With missiles of any other damage type, DPS drops to 256.

Tengu Electronics – Emergent Locus Analyzer. The CPU Efficiency Gate adds slightly more CPU with the bonuses, but the Tengu doesn’t have CPU issues. The Obfuscation Manifold is more for ECM ships. The Dissolution Sequencer seems at first to be a better choice than the Emergent Locus Analyzer, but it has 3 mids and 1 low instead of 4 mids. This is important when you actually fit the ship.

Tengu Engineering – Capacitor Regeneration Matrix. Most of the subsystems in this group are pretty horrible. The Augmented Capacitor Reserve has capacitor capacity bonuses, but even with that, has less capacitor than the Capacitor Regeneration Matrix. The Capacitor Regeneration Matrix not only has the highest base capacitor, but it also has recharge bonuses. The Augmented Capacitor Reserve is thus fairly useless for PVE and PVP. The Power Core Multiplier is mainly useful in combination with the Magnetic Infusion Basin for hybrids. The Supplemental Coolant Injector could be good if you overheat a lot, but is otherwise useless.

Tengu Propulsion – Gravimetric Capacitor. These subsystems are also fairly disappointing. The Fuel Catalyst has afterburner speed bonuses, but an afterburner would cripple a passive shield tank’s resist mods. Plus with heavy missiles, range is not an issue. The Interdiction Nullifier has an agility bonus, but has very poor base agility. It makes the Tengu as unwieldy as a battleship. That leaves the Gravitational Capacitor and Intercalated Nanofibers. This is mainly personal preference. You can either have more agility with the Intercalcated Nanofibers (.323 vs .387) or a higher max speed with the Gravitational Capacitor (231 vs 219). I simply used the Gravitational Capacitor as moving to acceleration gates in deadspace can be painful, and the agility doesn’t matter much. Plus the faster warp speed for the Gravitational Capacitor makes warping to/from missions a tiny bit faster (5.2 au/s vs 3.0 au/s).

Now for the actual fitting. Being a passive fit, the lows have Shield Power Relays. The highs have heavy missile launchers. The rig slots have Core Defence Field Purger IIs (the ship is already worth 400+ million and it’s for PVE, so use T2 rigs) for max shield recharge. The mids have 4x Large Shield Extenders and 3 resistance mods. This puts the resists at 76.2/91.6/87.4/78.9 and gives a nice tank of 1,583 omni damage.

Now for why this fit is better than the one mentioned at the beginning of the description:
– First of all, my Offensive subsystem can do better DPS against all damage types.
– Secondly, the Tengu Propulsion subsystem moves slightly faster, warps faster, and uses less cap to warp. Plus my fit is cap stable (the other fit lasts 49m 27s on paper). For those who have missioned with a Drake, you know that this being cap-unstable can be an annoyance. 49m seems like plenty at first. But don’t forget that jumping and warping to a mission will drop your cap quite a bit. And with so little DPS, level 4’s are going to take a while.
– Thirdly, my choice of the Emergent Locus Analyzer is better than the “4,000 DPS tank” fit mentioned earlier. The fit earlier has more raw shield hp/s recharge (343.6 vs 261), but has poor resists (57.9/91.6/87.4/78.9 vs 76.2/91.6/87.4/78.9). The other fit’s shield has the classic EM hole, while mine attempts to seal the hole more.

Feedback would be greatly appreciated! :)

W-Space Op

Went on a w-space operation with part of my corporation yesterday. Thanks to my ratting, my security status went up enough to let me into the 0.7 security system that the wormhole entrance was in. W-space was a nice change from PVPing in lowsec; I’ve been missing fleet work.

We got together a nice little fleet of two Abaddons, two Dominixes, and a Typhoon. We cleared out two class 2 systems, not very difficult at all. None of us dipped below 80% armor.

Next time we’re gonna try hitting class 3’s and 4’s (our last foray there didn’t go so well) and bring in a Scorpion with ECM, to see if it’ll get all the Sleeper agro. Then we can just remote rep one ship.

W-Space Op

One of the Dominixes was off at another site at the time of this picture. The Dominix in the front is getting repped by armor maintenance bots.