I get a fair whack of mails regarding my ship selection process and what determines what I would and would not roam around in.
Lately I've been flying my fair share of cruisers, and to me they are the most challenging.
So, below you will find a chart of stats that should help understand why I fly what I do, and how they stack up against each other.
You'll notice that there aren't really any kiting ships, and there is a reason why I heavily favour brawling.
|PROMS CHART OF STATS FOR
SOLO BRAWLING CRUISERS
|Buffer Tank (Uniform eHP/k)
|Active Tank (Uniform Tanking Amount/Regen)
|Damage (Faction + Implants)
|Capacitor (Usability, Mobility, & Damage Application)
|Agility (Align to Warp)
|Speed (MWD Active)
|Cost (After fit & Insurance Payout)
|** note **
heat, t2 ammo, or differing implants will greatly affect this stat
Not everyone will agree, but in my experience I've found that soloing in nano cruisers means you'll mostly be killing idiots & fast tackle.
If I want to exclusively kill frigates, I'll fly a frigate. If I'm flying a Cruiser, I expect to be able to kill other Cruisers and/or larger ships.
Brawling means that for the ships I DO engage, I can kill them as fast as possible before having to dip out. This is also why Gallente do this best
You'll also notice that there aren't any vanilla T1 Cruisers here. The reason isn't that they CAN'T, but because I typically don't.
Armor-fit Cruisers add up, and they aren't as well suited to soloing in 00 as their nemesis (the AF) is.
The same applies to some other fancier ships like the Muninn & Cerberus. They are capable as well, but not enough for me to feel like advocating them.
What I look for in a Cruiser and what I'll engage
These are my rules, and what I try to follow.
They are not gospel, so if you understand what I'm getting at, that's all that matters.
There are a few simple things really;
- tank more than 35k ehp
- not be reliant on cap boosters
- align faster than 7 seconds
- be faster than 1200m/s before heat
- be capable of dealing over 550dps
Now, these rules can be bent if the offending ships hugely exceed other requirements and/or perform quite well on average despite their handicap;
Damage + Tracking > Tank > Agility + Speed > Cap > Range
Since I'm after ships my own size or larger, damage takes precedence. However since smaller ships are more common, I need to be able to hit them.DEIMOS
If the damage is high enough to get around the weakness in the tank, we're cool.
If the damage and tank are high enough to get around the weakness in speed, we're cool too.
Cap is another thing though. I don't really like cap charges. I don't like having a great fight in the middle of 00 only to run out of cap at the end.
At the same time, I don't like having to rely on them in a fight. Injectors cycle slowly, and reload even slower.
This is why I like to run medium Nosferatu. They are quick and, when timed correctly, offer enough cap to power tackle/hardeners/weapons under a neut or two.
By extension, this is why plate/nos/rep is so nice to have. When you're capped out you get a good buffer to rely on, and when you aren't, you've got a nice repping tank!
Range is the least important thing. The reason being is that I'm looking to brawl. All of these ships work best at close range, so you're always looking to start a fight as close as you can.
If someone is kiting you, you're either outnumbered or (probably) not tackled. All of these ships are quick enough to shake most kiting Cruisers if not tank them outright. If a frigate catches you in a belt, well then you probably deserved to die :P
This is/was my archetypal Cruiser hull to work from; the ship which all are measured. It was a great solo roamer prior to the Crucible expansion, and it got a nice little buff since then.
It does just about everything really well, with it's only real weakness being its terrible sensor strength. Popularity in ECM ships and ECM drones means that flying this ship is always a roll of the dice.
You can have a great fight easily ruined by a flight of ec300s, but you can also have great fights should you be lucky enough dodge the shit. Heck, it's also (arguably) the cheapest after insurance.
Feel free to engage any T1 Cruiser/HAC/Recon, T1 BC, or T1 BS with this badass (exception of Domi/Phoon). Being the highest damage HAC means you can easily pour out over 800dps when you need to.
The MWD bonus combined with the Nos means you can perma-rep if you aren't being neuted out, as well as being able to MWD without penalty when trying to pull range.
Faction Antimatter, Void, Null*
In the public eye, this is the successor to Deimos. However, pitted against each other, the Deimos generally comes out on top thanks to the generous resist package.
Many people will hate on using the 4 guns, but the truth is, this ship isn't *that* good. Sure, the 90% web is awesome for dealing with frigates, but this ship has a dirty secret. The cap is awful.
Unlike the Deimos & Thorax, this ship doesn't get a capacitor bonus and is a ripe target for ships carrying neutralizers. Fortunately, the Crucible expansion reduced the Neutron Blaster cap usage to a level which can be handled by a well-timed medium nos.
The Vigilant has a couple big advantages that Deimos doesn't, and that isn't limited to the 90% web. For one, the agility is awesome and more than enough to catch fast cruisers with a well timed overload.
Most importantly though, the sensor strength is amazing. I'm generally pretty comfortable engaging under ECM drones and sometimes the jam boats (depending what's on the field). However, since this is expensive AND a pure buffer tank ship, I don't really recommend going after anything other than Cruiser sized hulls. Take on any Cruiser/HAC/Recon, but your mileage may vary against BCs and larger.
Faction Antimatter, Void, Null*
VEXOR NAVY ISSUE
As far as Gallente Blaster Cruisers go, this guy sits right between then Deimos & Vigilant. It's got some drawbacks, as well as some advantages.
I don't want to reiterate too much, because the stats kinda speak for themselves. The biggest difference is that more than half of your dps is in drones, so if you're combating neuts you're golden.
Like the above, feel free to take on any Cruiser/HAC/Recon, but be wary when coming up against a BC.
Faction Antimatter, Void
I like the Sacrilege and I don't care who knows it. It's a flawed ship, but based on the current pvp landscape, it can arguably take the biggest beating.
The damage output may seem pretty low from the outset, but you need to keep in mind that you should be doing the perfect damage type at all times.
Player skillset and knowledge is paramount for this guy, as it will often be the deciding factor in the fights.
The ship does have problems, and most notably is that it's fat. The agility is a turn off for most, and many will give up on the thing because of it.
You're best tool is that the ship appears weak. You want people to come to you, at which point you can perma tank under guns while being extremely hard to jam.
I would not recommend flying this ship if your skills are low though. You pretty much need to have HAC5 to make it worthwhile.
You should also be aware that Rage missiles are great, and will give you a significant bump in damage output against BCs & BSs.
You also need to carry Standard Crash. This drug is awesome, and will help you shake frigs that have you scrammed/webbed.
Feel free to engage whatever you can catch, but I'd avoid Myrmidons and Command Ships.
As a side note, T2 missile rigs are pretty goddamn expensive at the time of posting. I'm sure the Russians have/had something to do with that.
So, you probably won't want to be flying this unless you're rich or want to use the T1 rig (don't).
Faction HAMs, Rage HAMs
This is an odd ship tbh. The damage isn't terribly high, and it's locked to em/thermal output. Like all laser boats, you need to rely on your range and quick ammo swaps.
Unlike other laser boats though, this one has awesome tracking AND doesn't drink cap too badly. There's not much to say other than make use of Scorch as you're vying for the tackle, and overload the shit out of your Nos. There is one taboo on this hull though, and that's the ec300s. You don't NEED to use them, however I like to hunt Cynabals and give those fuckers a taste of their own medicine.
Don't bother complaining about the mixed guns either. Unlike the Nightmare, the ship is pretty tight to fit. Since the Phantasm was nerfed some time ago, the dps/tank arrangement I use in the chart is the best overall, but it means you need to mix the guns. If CCP were to ever tweak the stats a bit, you would ideally want to run with 3 HPLs, but until then you're going to have to deal with it.
You may also wonder why I have the Phantasm here, and not the Navy Omen. The reason is simple; tracking.
The Navy Omen has such absolutely god awful tracking that it can barely hit Cruisers, never mind attempting to use Scorch or Conflagration.
I'd limit your engagements to Cruiser sized ships, and possibly really close range or EM-weak BCs.
Faction Multifrequency, Scorch, Conflagration
Surprise! Yea, this badboy is a tricky motherfucker. It's not the best by any means, but it's so far out of leftfield that nobody even considers this as being a ship capable of brawling.
Everyone knows the Gallente Recons can brawl, but nobody suspects the Huginn. It's got a pretty decent buffer tank, good speed, a sweet web, and when you mix the right ammo groups with some heat, you've got some serious pain exceeding 575dps. Be wary of frigates, and be quick to catch Cruisers! I'd be really careful about BCs, but you can do it simply because people don't generally suspect the damn thing to hurt so much. This ship doesn't really have awesome range, so I wouldn't bother with Barrage. I would bother with Hail though, no doubt.
Faction EMP/PP/Fusion, Hail
Drop Booster, Crash Booster
The only injected ship on this list. The reasoning is pretty simple though, so follow along. It's got a BC sized cargo, w/ good resists & a decent tank, ecm resistance, over 650dps, and damage variety.
The drone loadout I have above is entirely up to your choosing, but I have what I do for my own falcon hating reasons. Flying the Ishtar is pretty much identical to the Deimos, only with the added surprise factors of the blasters extra 180+ dps and ECCM. Feel free to go after anything, but just keep an eye on your cargo since you're going to be drinking cap if things get hairy.
Drop Booster, Exile Booster
This is a new ship on the list. Through the Inferno expansion, the Gila has transformed into a ship that better reflects it's Pirate origins & pricetag.
The two main changes that allow it to grace this list are the addition of Ancillary Shield Boosters, and Drone Damage Amplifiers. Thanks to these mods, of usable solo fits, the Gila has the highest tank, damage, and best damage application.
The ships buffer is quite good, and the addition of a shield booster (providing the equivalent of 2 LSEs) allows for the ship to be fairly tough. The small cargo isn't a large concern since you can carry a sufficient number of cap boosters, and a fair number of rockets (for drone work). Some people swear by nanoing the ship, but I find it hard to hold the target long enough to kill it. Others will argue that an XL booster is needed but I don't think it's a wise fitting and I'll explain why.
The Gila has stage presence, and (for some reason) a reputation of sorts. Even though the Gila has never been *that* amazing, it's always been uncommon enough to attract blobs. As such, this attraction is the ships undoing.
Fitting an XL booster will surely allow you to tank for a fair bit of time, but I would rather have a medium neut to shake frigates. As strong as your drones are, they can and will be shot at which will leave you defenseless.
Without dumping isk on faction items, fitting an XL booster will also cripple your damage output quite significantly. This is the biggest no-no because now you're paying faction ship prices for far less output (~615).
With that said, the Gila is flawed for solo work. While it does the job, like it's faction brethren the Vigilant, it's own rarity and status attract more attention than this ship can handle on its own.
Faction/Rage Rockets (drones)
Navy Cap 150
So that about sums it up. I hope this has shed some light on the methods to my madness
If you've got any more questions or whatever, lemme know.
I'll try to remember to update this as time progresses, otherwise just assume this is all still true
I'm aware that some ships are pretty expensive at the moment, but that is more than likely a result of all the bot/rmt bans that occurred recently.
Give it time, they'll come back down.