Skirmisher Ship Requirements
This article is based on Toran Brades' lecture recorded as part of the PVP-SKIRMISHING class held in January, 2013. You can listen to the original lecture by clicking here.
It is important that the Skirmisher understands the strength of the Fleet Interceptor, and why these strengths are important to the skirmisher.
Strengths of the Fleet Interceptor:
- Bonusses to point range
- Small signature radius even with microwarpdrive on
- Fast warp speed
- Immunity to bubbles
All of these strengths are important to a skirmisher.
Bonuses of a Fleet Interceptor:
- 15% reduction to microwarpdrive sig radius penalty PER LEVEL
- 5% bonus to warp disruptor range PER LEVEL
What is not important for a skirmisher?
Because damage dealing is not important at all to the role of a skirmisher. It is your job to hold the target down, not kill it.
While other ships can provide all these features, no ship does it as well as a Fleet Interceptor (picking a different ship for the job should be the result of strong consideration, e.g. looking more harmless etc).
Why not use other ships?
Question asked in fleet chat: What about the Dramiel? Can't I fly that as a skirmisher? Isn't it faster than a interceptor?
Disadvantages of a Dramiel:
- No reduction to microwarpdrive signature bloom, which means it is easier to hit. A Fleet Interceptor with MWD on has the sig radius of a bit over the size of a Destroyer, while a Dramiel with active MWD has a sig radius larger than a cruiser.
- No bonus to point range, making range tanking more challenging than in a Fleet Interceptor.
While a Dramiel is fast, often faster than a Fleet Interceptor, and can lock targets almost as quickly as the Fleet Interceptors do, it is inherently less survivable than a Fleet Interceptor, especially when the MWD is turned on.
Disadvantages of Combat Interceptors
So why don't skirmishers use Combat Interceptors? Don't they have better tank and deal more damage?
- No bonus to point range
- Less useful slot layout and/or fewer slots
- They are slower than Fleet Interceptors (not base speed, but after fitting them, especially with a tank)
- They offer no advantages relevant to the role of the skirmisher
Which Fleet Interceptor is best?
So which of the four Fleet Interceptors is the best one for a skirmisher to fly?
Ultimately, it is a matter of preference. Each has slight advantages and disadvantages in comparison to the others, which tend to come down to how you prefer to fit, fly, and your existing trained skills. Since Rubicon, the fleet interceptors have also moved much closer together.
The Maledictino and Crow are most commonly flown by skirmishers, followed by the Stiletto and then the Ares.
- The Crow and Stiletto have that 4th mid slot, creating a variety of flexible fitting options.
- The Malediction and Ares only have three mid slots, but are usually faster than the 4 slot inties due to having more low slots. If Crow/Stiletto don't fit a tank module (often MASB) into the 4th slot, Malediction and Ares are a bit tankier. Generally, the Ares is slightly inferior to the Malediction, but not to a big extent.
Unlike so many other fleet roles, the job of a skirmisher is heavily dependent upon a pilot's personal skills "behind the keyboard." Your ship is a tool, and ultimately, if you can do the job of a skirmisher, you will be able to do it in any of the Fleet Interceptors, and, like 10% difference in performance will rarely decide the outcome of an engagement. But picking the best tool available is still a valid consideration.
If you are going to fly as a skirmisher, use a Fleet Interceptor. The bonuses it offers all provide much needed advantages to the skirmisher's role in a fleet.