Remote repair concepts
- 1 Introduction
- 2 Remote repair 101
- 2.1 Shield Transporters
- 2.2 Remote Armor Repair Systems
- 2.3 Remote Hull Repair Systems
- 2.4 Triage Modules
- 2.5 Logistics Drones
- 3 Remote repair concepts
- 4 Remote repair related concepts
This article is part of the PVP Logi seminar. It will describe what remote repair is, how it works and what modules are used. It will define and explain a number of terms that are key to understanding remote repair. You are probably familiar with a lot if not all of these concepts, but this is just to make sure that we are all on the same page and use the same terms. Many of these terms are covered in more detail in other class material, this article is designed to give a brief overview on these topics.
Make sure you understand the concepts in this article well, since the seminar will only touch briefly on it. If you have any questions about this material, make sure you prepare them.
Remote repair 101
Remote repair is a mechanic in EVE where one ship repairs another. At its most basic level, all you need is a remote repair module (a high-slot item) or logistics drones, a target (usually a fleetmate) targeted and to activate the module or set the drones to 'attack' the target as you would any other combat module or drone against an enemy.
Since you must have a target to activate a remote repair module or logistics drone, you cannot use either to repair yourself.
When remote repairing shields, the modules used are referred to by the game as Shield Transporters (example: Shield Transporter II). Despite the name and description, shield transporters do not actually remove any shields or shield regeneration from your own ship.
Like other module types (turrets for example), shield transporters are divided into four categories (small, medium, large and capital) with the corresponding fitting requirements and benefits you would expect.
- Shield Transporter I (meta 0)
- Asymmetric Barrier Transpositioner I (meta 1)
- Murky Shield Screen Transmitter I (meta 2)
- 'Atonement' I Ward Projector (meta 3)
- S95a Partial Shield Transporter (meta 4)
- Shield Transporter II
Within the Tech 1 progression, each higher meta level increases the amount transferred and range as well as decreasing CPU. The cycle time (5seconds) and power requirements stay the same.
Tech 2 shield transporters require more CPU and Power than the tech 1 modules, an equal amount of transfer and range as the meta 4 variant and a half second reduction in cycle time. (4.5seconds) Due to the high fitting requirements and the low bonus (half a second of cycle time does not add up to a lot in your typical fleet engagement) you will frequently see people fitting meta 4 modules instead of tech 2.
The meta 2 variant decreases CPU and provides greater range and repair amount while keeping a 75k power requirement and a 5s cycle time.
Remote Armor Repair Systems
The armor remote repair module is referred to as Remote Armor Repair Systems (example Armor Repair System II).
Similarly, the Remote Armor Repair Systems are broken into four size categories (Small, Medium, Large, Capital).
- Remote Armor Repair System I (meta 0)
- I-ax Regenerative Projector (meta 1)
- Coaxial Regenerative Projector (meta 2)
- 'Arup' I Remote Bulwark Reconstruction (meta 3)
- 'Solace' I Remote Bulwark Reconstruction (meta 4)
- Remote Armor Repair System II
Also similar to shield transporters, the higher meta level modules provide better range and repair amount along with less CPU usage while maintaining the same cycle (5s) and power requirements.
The tech 2 variant also has a much higher fitting requirement with its only bonus over the meta4 variant being half a second reduction in cycle time.
The meta 2 variant decreases CPU and provides greater range and repair amount while keeping a 150k power requirement and a 5s cycle time.
Remote Hull Repair Systems
As with local repair modules, there are also hull remote repair modules (named Remote Hull Repair Systems). Also like local repair modules, remote hull repair systems do not seem to be designed for actual combat use (their repair rate is roughly half that of the corresponding armor/shield repair system and in the sub-capital size ranges their cap usage is roughly doubled.) There are also no ships with a bonus to remote hull repair.
There are only four modules one for each size category (small, medium, large and capital). Each of the sub-capital modules have a cycle type of 6 seconds and the capital module has a cycle time of 5 seconds.
The Triage Module I is a carrier only module that greatly affects the carrier's ability to remote repair.
It has several important negative effects:
- It takes Strontium Clathrates to activate
- Once activated it lasts for 300 seconds and cannot be deactivated early
- While activated you cannot warp, jump or move under your own power
- Your mass increases 10x so you are a lot less likely to be able to move under anyone else's power (this could be a good thing)
- You can't launch or control drones.
- Remote Effects don't work. This includes friendly remote repairs, cap transfer, etc... You are on your own and not going anywhere.
However for all the bad, there are some pretty huge bonuses:
- Remote Effects don't work. This includes EWAR, ECM, etc.
- Your cycle time for all your local repair modules are halfed and their effects are doubled. (for a net effect of x4 remote repair rate)
- Your cycle time on all remote repair and remote cap transfer modules are halfed and their effects are doubled.
- Your scan resolution is increased by 900% making it trivial and fast to lock allies.
Logistics drones follow the same pattern as other drones with Light, Medium, and Heavy variants of both shield and armor repair bots. At each size level there is an entry level tech 1 drone and a much better tech 2 variant with better stats but much higher skill requirements. Even light T2 maintenance drones require the repair drone skill to V and the associated repair skill to IV. There are no capital or super capital specific sized drones.
- Light drones (5m3) do 12 (T1) or 14 (T2) HP of repair per 5 sec cycle. A full flight (5) will do 60 or 70 HP of repair.
- Medium drones (10m3) do 24 (T1) or 28 (T2) HP of repair per 5 sec cycle. A full flight (5) will do 120 or 140 HP of repair.
- Heavy drones (25m3) do 60 (T1) or 72 (T2) HP of repair per 5 sec cycle. A full flight (5) will do 300 or 360 HP of repair.
All of the T2 Support Cruisers have a 100% bonus to repair drone amount (armor for the Guardian and Oneiros, and shield for the Basilisk and Scimitar). With this bonus, a Guardian or a Basilisk (with a dronebay and bandwidth of 25m3) can provide an additional 120 or 140 HP repaired every 5 seconds which is equivalent to somewhere between what a small and medium meta 4 repairer provide (96 HP for small and 192 HP for medium per 5 sec cycle). An Oneiros with a full complement of medium T2 repair bots can provide an extra 280 HP per cycle. These amounts should always be balanced against factors like drone control range, travel time, and the other normal strengths and weaknesses of drones.
Because of these weaknesses, logistics drones are normally not considered sufficient in their own right to be the sole repair for a remote-repair fleet. They do occasionally serve well as supplements to dedicated remote repair ships or as utility drones to repair between fights. With their ample dronebays, carriers are another time when the disadvantages of repair drones are outweighed by the utility of carrying some heavies 'just in case'. More information on drone selection for remote repair dedicated ships can be found in Remote repair fleets, ships and fittings.
Remote repair concepts
These terms are specific to remote repair, although some are also relevant to local repair.
The cap chain is a technique of transferring capacitor to fellow remote repair ships in such a way where it is resilient to the loss of one or more of the ships. More details about cap chains and how they are used is covered in Remote repair fleets, ships and fittings.
'Landing a rep (cycle)'
When using remote repair modules, it is important to know when your target will get the benefit of that repair. Landing a rep refers to the time that your remote repair module actually impacts their shield or armor.
In the case of remote armor repair systems, the rep lands at the end of its cycle. Which is to say after you lock a target and activate the module, it takes the full cycle (5 seconds) before your target sees the benefit of your repairing.
Shield repair systems function differently. In the case of shield transfer arrays, the rep lands at the start of its cycle. So in the case of shields, after you lock a target and activate the module, the target immediately gets a boost to their shields.
This may seem like a trivial difference, but as we will see in Remote repair time line and cycle management this can make a big difference.
There are several situations where inefficient module timing or other factors can lower your effective repair rate. When this happens it is referred to as over-repping.
The first way this can occur is when the amount of total damage your target has taken is too much for a single module to repair, but less than a second module can repair. In this case depending on the remaining damage after one repair module and how big the target's buffer is, it might be optimal to leave one module on the target leaving the other module free to repair other fleet members, only switching a second module on your target when they reach half armor. This does have its risks as additional enemy ships can decide to shoot on your target causing him to take damage at a faster rate than you anticipated and if you are not extremely vigilant about how much armor your target has and the rate at which they are loosing it you could easily loose a target and not know what happened.
The second way this can occur is if the modules are inefficiently staggered. When dealing with close range weapons, usually a smaller amount of damage is done with a much smaller gap between damage dealt. This results in a high DPS but a low volley. Since your cycle is relatively long, you may end up repairing in one large batch what was dealt of a longer period of time. Similar to the previous example, you may end up using three modules when two is all that is needed. In addition by taking up multiple modules at the same time increase the time it would take for you to cycle one of those modules and put it somewhere else. In cases like this it is frequently optimal to stagger your repair modules. (see below)
The third way this can occur is if you are dealing with a high alpha enemy with a long time between shots (sometimes over 20s/volley in the case of some battleship turrets). If the amount of damage done at each of these requires two repairers to repair it fully, keeping those two repairers on that target constantly means you will be wasting 3/4 of your cycles in the case of an enemy ROF of 20s. Usually you can avoid this by using less repairers over a longer time spreading the repair over the 20s or by cycling your remote repairers manually to coincide with the damage dealt. Both methods have risk. If you use less repairers over a longer time, you are leaving your target vulnerable for longer if another high alpha enemy decides to shoot at him as well. If you are using more reppers but cycling manually, you risk loosing track of your target while repairing someone else or getting hit by lag and not applying the repairs in time. Deciding which method to use as with all things in PvP relies as much on player experience and situational awareness as any other factor.
Spider tanking is using remote-repair modules on non-dedicated, non-bonused combat ships with the eye to decentralizing remote repair functions. More on this subject and its benefits and drawbacks are covered in Remote repair fleets, ships and fittings.
Sometimes it can be beneficial to be less efficient. When used as a baiting tactic, holding back some of your repair cycles so that it appears you are struggling to keep up with incoming damage might keep a ship on a given target or on the field longer. In fact sometimes if your opponent thinks they are making enough progress, they will stay on the field even after being brought into hull damage.
While this tactic is not for every fleet or situation, it is definitely something to remember.
Here are some general EVE concepts that are relevant to remote repair.
Whether your ship is not designed to be cap stable, you are coming under heavy energy neuting or your cap chain partner (more on this in Remote repair fleets, ships and fittings) has stopped transferring capacitor to you, as a remote repair pilot you must be aware of your capacitor level and some basic information about capacitor and how capacitor recharges.
Capacitor (like shields) changes its regeneration rate based on how much energy is left in your capacitor. The optimal recharge rate is right around 30%, if you get below this the rate drops off significantly and the further you get above this the slower it regenerates as well (though that is less important in this instance). If your capacitor begins to buckle and approach 30%, you will often need to cycle (turn off) some of your repair modules or propulsion/tank modules until you have enough to continue.
Consequently the watchword here is to know your ship. Know your standard 'stable' position for capacitor if you are cap-stable, know how much cap your big cap-hungry modules pull and keep an eye on your cap. If you start to loose your cap, know what you are going to turn off. If you notice yourself being neuted do let your fc/fleet know so they can prioritize the neuting ships (loosing a remote repair ship or two is often fatal to a fleet that depends on them).
Damage: sustained DPS vs volley damage
While both DPS and volley damage have an effect on how well you can repair your fleetmates, volley damage can be a remote repair fleet's biggest enemy. If the opposing fleet can put enough volley damage on a target to blow it up in one volley, no matter how much remote repair you put on that target, it will still die. This can be fairly common when fighting well coordinated, large fleets.
In fleets of over 10 people, it is difficult to have your remote repair pilots monitoring all the fleet members for damage using watch lists. In addition, having a large fleet use voice comms to call for repairs frequently becomes and unintelligible mess which prevents vital FC calls from coming through. To counteract this large fleets typically utilize the built in EVE broadcast system for repairs, cap transfers and the like. More details about exactly how to use fleet broadcasts in remote repair fleets can be found in Remote repair tips and techniques.
Hit Points, Resistances and Effective Hit Points
When fitting ships and comparing fits, you will frequently hear the term "Effective Hit Points" or EHP discussed. EHP is the combination of your hitpoints when combined with your various resistances against a given damage type.
For the sake of discussion, lets assume you are piloting a minmatar shuttle.
As you can see, a base shuttle has 235 HP of shields. To calculate its EHP we need to compare it against resists and the amount of damage done.
If our shuttle were coming under fire from a pulse laser using a multifrequency crystal, 58% of the damage would be coming from EM and 42% of the damage would be coming from thermal.
The equation to calculate EHP is:
Where damage(n) is an individual damage type, resist(damage(n)) is the percent resist for that damage type on your tank and damageRatio(damage(n)) is what percentage of incoming damage is that damage type.
So in the above example of a minmatar shuttle being shot by a pulse laser using multifrequency crystals we would have about 257 EHP.
If instead we were dealing with autocannons shooting carbonized lead (20% explosive, 80% kinetic), we would have around 405 EHP.
This means that the shuttle would last longer if undergoing the same rate of damage from carbonized lead vs multifrequency crystals.
Normally when comparing buffer tanked ships not in a remote repair fleet it doesn't matter how you get to a given EHP (a given damage type will take the same amount of time to kill you regardless of if you have high hp but low resists or high resists but low hp) but in a remote repair gang this is not the case.
Given that remote repair modules give a fixed amount of hps back per cycle, you get more bang for your buck from having a higher resist. For example if you have a 2000 HP with a 50% resist and your remote repairer gives back 100 every 5 seconds, you will be getting back 200 EHP every 5 seconds. If you have 4000 HP with 0% resists in the same scenario you would only be getting back 100EHP.
Frequently when fitting for high resistances, it can become a challenge to raise the resistances without lowering the EHP. In cases like this it can sometimes be beneficial to have a higher EHP. In general you want to make sure you have more than enough of a buffer to survive whatever damage is coming your way long enough for your remote repairers to get their repairs on you regardless of whether they have you pre-targeted or not and regardless of whether they have all their remote repair modules on someone else and need to deactivate them or not. After that, its generally better to have higher resists even if it lowers the EHP slightly.
Module cycling and staggering
The cycle time for the majority of remote repair modules is 5 seconds. A lot can happen in 5 seconds in a large fleet fight. As a remote repair pilot, if you have multiple modules on a single ship (due to overwhelming damage coming in), it is often optimal to space those repair cycles out (start one wait 2.5 seconds, start the second). This gives you greater flexibility if you need to cycle off a module and gives a far better sustained rate of repair if the damage is also coming in staggered.
Remote Energy Transfer
Though not technically a "repair" task, remote energy transfer modules share a lot in common with remote repair modules. In fact several ships that get bonuses to remote repair modules get bonuses to remote energy transfer modules. Remote energy transfer can be used a number of different ways to help a remote repair fleet. This is discussed more in Remote repair fleets, ships and fittings.
Being able to target your fleetmates quickly in order to get reps on them quickly is vital. If you are too slow to lock or can't lock at all due to being jammed you will not be much use to your fleet.
As discussed in Basic PvP Mechanics, the key areas that affect your lock time are your fleetmate's signature radii and your scan resolution. In addition a good logistic pilot must keep as high a sensor strength as they can since they are frequently the target of enemy ECM.
In fleets of ten or less, it can be useful for a remote repair pilot to add all fleet members to his watch list so he can keep track of their shields, armor and hull levels. In larger fleets typically there is a heirarchy of people on a remote repair pilot's watchlist. Though who gets on the remote repair pilot's watchlist is highly personalized and varies greatly in general a good starting point is:
- Cap chain partners
- Lightly tanked ships (with major force multipliers (ECM and EWAR) taking priority and high-value taking priority over low-value)
- High-value ships
- and depending on who you ask: anyone who offers sufficient bribes to the logistics pilots