PVP-U FC Guidelines
This page will contain a collection of tips and guidelines for FCing an Agony class.
It is a good idea to appoint an Agony 'Support Officer' to manage your support pilots, ensure the correct balance of skirmishers, covops and chaser tackle etc. This takes some weight off the FC, who is likely to be spending this time coordinating with his intel team.
Make sure you check the fleet manager and balance your EWAR before the roam - aim for a decent spread across all EWAR types, other than target painters which we don't need. 2 or 3 ship scanners are also recommended for scanning BS targets for smartbombs.
Remember that some ships (such as Merlins) have higher cpu than others and will be more suited to CPU intensive modules.
If possible, have all ships other than griffins fit a Damage Control as this will increase their survivability aginst Stealth Bombers (griffins do not have enough structure hp for this to make a significant difference, as well as needing their 1 low slot for a Signal Distortion Amp).
Common Anti-Class Tactics
Stealth Bombers are very popular now, and most BASIC classes will pick quickly find themselves followed by either lone bombers or a pack. While a single bomb will not kill anything, 2 bombs will kill your griffins as well as many frigates that have not fit a Damage Control. 3 bombs will kill most of your gang.
Most bombing runs will take place on stargates. If your gang is not agressed, the easiest way to avoid these attacks is to have them jump through the gate. Since the bomber will be warping off at this point, you can use this time to attempt to lose them, or to attempt to lay a trap for them entering system (although catching a bomber tends to be difficult).
If your gang is unable to jump through a gate to evade the bombs, a coordinated bombing run can be a huge threat to your gang. For 2 or more bombs, it is recommended that you have your griffins warp themselves out, or in the case of 3 or more bombs you may consider warping the whole gang.
Catching and killing the bomber, while viable, has proved difficult in practice. While it is worth attempting, you should not rely on this method for keeping your gang safe.
Another very common tactic against BASIC classes is the use of smartbombing Battleships. At least 2 or 3 pilots in your gang will have fitted ship scanners for this purpose, and should be scanning any BS targets that your gang engages.
Be very aware of this tactic when engaging on a bubble or when travelling gate-to-gate through lowsec, as people will know you're coming.
Things to Remember
"This Is What Just Happened..."
Remember that your students are here to learn. Where possible (and obviously when the gang is safe, or already podded) try to explain what just happened, why you did what you did and why the enemy did what they did.
Calling Primaries... Twice!
When you enter a fight, many of your students will often be overwhelmed by everything that's happening, and often mishear Primary/Secondary calls. Where possible, try to repeat your target calls at least once, ideally every few seconds.
If you are mainly calling by name/ship type you may want to tell students to sort their overview by one of these criteria to more easily spot their targets.
Track/Damp Groups and the EWO
The fleet manager can be used to assign these automatically, although it won't assign scripts.
Remembering to call track/damp group targets can be difficult, but is an effective way to spread your EWAR when engaging multiple targets.
You may want to ask an Agony member to be EWAR Officer and call Track/Damp group targets while you focus on fleet orders and Primary/Secondary calling.
Some good things to discuss during the roam are:
- ISK/damage done to enemies. Losing a few frigates to kill an uninsurable 150m isk HAC is a good trade any way you slice it.
- Remind students to update their clone post-podding.
- Choosing encounters and measured aggression. A recon/dessie fleet is death for a roaming frigate gang. Conversely, we are death for a HAC/Battleship gang.
- Talk about Hit-and-Run tactics of picking off a lone ship away from a group.
- Talk about obvious shows of firepower (50 frigates, for example) and how many experienced pilots will simply bug out when they see us.