Difference between revisions of "EVE Fitting Tool"
Revision as of 17:03, 29 January 2012
- 1 Introduction
- 2 Downloading and Installing EFT
- 3 Getting Started
- 4 The Ship Fitting Window
- 5 Damage Profiles
- 6 DPS Graphs
- 7 Conclusion
The Eve Fitting Tool (EFT) is a program that allows pilots to design and experiment with ship fittings out of game, without having to spend large amounts of ISK on purchasing the actual ship and modules. EFT can be used for such things as figuring out if that fit you thought of will work out with your character's skills, determining what combination of modules will fit together and what sort of effects will electronic warfare have on your ship.
Besides saving you lots of ISK, EFT will also save you a lot of time.
Downloading and Installing EFT
To download EFT visit the following Eve Online forum thread:
There are four main sections to the EFT interface; the Character Editor, the Ship Browser and the Fitting Panel, plus the ship fitting window itself. These can be seen below: (please note, not all of these windows will be visible when you open the program - read on!)
While it is possible to use EFT without importing your character's skills into it, by using the "All Level V" default character, I advise against it because you'd be missing out on the vast majority of what EFT has to offer.
Click on View in the top menu (or Ctrl-C), then click on Character Editor from the dropdown menu. When the Character Editor appears, there will be 4 buttons at the top of the first window. They are Create new, Rename, Quick Import and Delete. To add your character to EFT, do not simply click the import button, as this will save over the All Level V character! Click on Create new Character, then give the character a name. This newly created character starts out with no skills. Select this character using the drop-down menu, and then click Import.
When you click on the Import button, the User ID and API Key fields appear. If you're familiar with EveMon, you know how this works. If not, go to the following website to copy/paste the values from your character's API default page. http://www.eveonline.com/api/default.asp
If you have more than one character, be sure to use the correct API information.
Using the Implants tab, you can select implants which will be included whenever that character is selected. Implants can also be added for specific ship types, so for assessing the affects of a partiuclar implant it makes more sense to do it there. However, if a character routinely uses particular implants you may wish to set them here.
Primary Character as Default Character
If you've used EFT for a long time, you'll probably get a bit annoyed at having to change the character from the default (which is decided by alphabetical order) to your main character. To fix this, you can use a trick that works for nearly all Windows O/S filing systems. Add a ! to the front of your main character name, e.g. !Jin Darius, so that it becomes the first to display in the character list.
Creating an All Level 4 Character
Occasionally you may prefer to test all level 4 values without having to change everything using the drop-down menus. Go to your EFT directory, then into the Characters directory. Copy your 'All level V.chr' file to create a new copy. Rename the new copy to 'All level 4.chr'. Open up the new file with Notepad (or some other basic text editor program), then use the replace all function to change the 5s to 4s. Save the changes and you'll have an 'all level 4' character for your theorizing pleasure :)
Note: You can also use this method to fix up your 'All level 5' character values.
The Ship Browser is quite self-explanatory. You use this window to select the ship you wish to edit fittings for.
Ships are sorted into categories by their ship type (e.g. frigate, strategic cruiser, etc.) Expanding one of these will display all ships in that category.
The buttons to the left of this window allow you to filter ships by faction, however in practice it is not difficult to find ships so these aren't really much use!
The fitting panel is attached to the left of the screen by default, and despite it's misleading name is actually more of an item browser.
This panel is divided into two sections. The top section is very similar to the ship browser, with many expandable catagories in pretty much the same arrangement as you would find them on the in-game market. The second section displays all results for the selected item type, with tabs at the very bottom to select between Market (i.e. t1/named/t2), Faction, Complex (i.e. deadspace) and Commander (i.e. Officer) variants. This window also displays base cpu and powergrid requirements for each item, and items can be right clicked here to display their attributes.
The Ship Fitting Window
Now that we're familiar with the interface, let's talk through setting up a ship. Use the ship browser to select the ship you want to fit. This will open a new window displaying the slot layout of that ship, and a whole lot of numbers. Let's talk about this window for a moment. Below you will see one I made earlier!
1 - Current Setup
This section contains three parts:
- The drop-down menu taking up most of this area allows you to select from all of your existing setups for that ship type. As far as I can tell, these are always in chronological order of when you created them.
- The ship icon to the right of this will open a second drop-down where you can perform a variety of tasks related to your setups, such as creating a new setup, renaming/deleting existing setups and exporting setups.
- The blue question mark on the left simply shows the ship's bonuses when howevered over with the mouse.
2 - Character
Here you can select the character whose skills you want to apply to the setup. The green/red rectangle to the right of this box indicates whether the selected character has the skills required to use that setup.
3 - Modules
This forms the bulk of the window, and will originally just show empty high/med/low and rig slots. You can drag items from the fitting panel into these slots, or simply double click them in the fitting window to add them to a free slot.
To the right of each added module, EFT will display cpu use, powergrid use, cap use (positive or negative), range (in the form 'optimal + falloff') and ammo/charge type where applicable.
To the left of any active module (e.g. one you have to turn off/on) there will be a green tick to signify that all calculations are with that module turned on. Clicking this tick will turn the module off, right clicking will overheat the module and holding Ctrl and clicking will 'offline' the module. Simply clicking the icon again will undo any of these changes.
Notice that when overheating is turned on for any module, a new column will appear in this window. For every module being affected by this overheat, EFT will show one of two things. This will be either:
- The time until this module burns out.
- The percentage damage this module will have taken by the time the overheated module(s) have burnt out.
Right clicking any module will open up a menu for a few additional functions. This includes removing the module, showing the module info, and changing ammo/charge types for modules which use them. Modules affected by various skills will also allow you here to modify any of the relevent skills on your character's profile to, for example, compare the effects of training that skill another level.
4 - Ship Resources
This section is reasonably simple. On the left, you will see the ship's remaining (i.e. unused) turret hardpoints, launcher hardpoints, and calibration, and on the right you will see cpu (both used and total), powergrid, and drone bandwidth.
5 - Ship Parameters
Here is where all the magic happens! In this section, you will see various confusing numbers which tell you something about your ship. Hovering the mouse over any of these will tell you what you're seeing, and occasionally even tell you more information again! Below is a breakdown of the information you can find here, sorted by subsection:
- Hitpoints - First of all we can see the ship's total effective HP, which is a very useful number especially for buffer tanked ships. You can also see shield and armour resistance values, as well as total (raw, not effective) hp numbers for shield/armour and structure. Hovering over any of these three will display effective HP for that section, as well as additional details such as peak passive regen rate for shields.
- Defence - This displays whatever repair-based defensive method is having the greatest effect on the ship (for any ship which is not active tanked, this will simply be it's passive shield recharge rate). The top number here is sustained efficiency, which is the amount of damage tanked per second on an infinite timescale (e.g. if your cap use is twice your cap regen, this assumes your booster is on 50% of the time). For PvE, this is probably the more useful number. The bottom number is reinforced efficiency, which is the amount tanked assuming all modules you have set as active are active (i.e. what you would tank if you always had cap). For most PvP, this is the number you would be more concerned with. Right clicking the defence parameters will allow you to choose which form of defence is displayed, as well as allowing you to set the damage profile for incoming damage. More on this later!
- Capacitor - This displays how long your cap will last (or the percentage at which it is stable) with all selected modules running, as well as total cap and total income/expenditure of cap. Hovering over the total cap will also show it's regen time.
- Firepower - This again displays two values.
- The top value is your average damage per second, which is a reasonable approximation of your ship's maximum firepower. This assumes that every shot deals full damage (I'm not sure if it includes the chance of wrecking hits in this figure) and it does not take into account having to reload. Hovering over this will display a breakdown of dps into turret, launcher and drone dps.
- The bottom value is your volley damage, otherwise known as alpha strike. This is the total damage dealt by a single round of all weapons. 'However', this value does not include damage from drones, and does not include damage from missiles unless the ship has no turrets fitted. Again, this assumes all shots do full damage.
- Targeting - This is reasonably straight forward, showing max targeting range, max number of targets, scan resolution and sensor strength.
- There's one extra function here which is quite well hidden. By right clicking your scan resolution you can instead have this value display your ship's lock time against a number of approximate targets (e.g. battlecruisers with MWD) or any of the other setups you have open at the time.
- Mobility - This reasonably simple section displays three attributes: your maximum speed, your align time and your ship's warp speed. By hovering over your warp speed, you can also display the maximum warp distance that your ship is capable of in one go.
- Additional Attributes - Finally we have the additional attributes at the bottom of this panel. These are all as they appear, listing sig radius, cargohold, drone bay (used and total) and price (assuming you have input values for modules, which people generally don't). You can also here set your squad, wing and fleet commander bonuses from any of your saves character profiles.
6 - Drones and Additional Effects
This section is split into three tabs on the bottom edge of the screen.
Here you can add drones, which can be found just like modules in the fitting panel. Checking the box next to a set of drones signifies it as being launched, and it's effect will be included in calculations.
Boosters and Implants
Here you can add boosters and implants, again found in the fitting panel. While you can also add implants to your character profile, this method is preferable when you want to see the effect of a specific implant set on a setup.
This section is for any remote effects you want to apply to the ship. You can either add these straight from the fitting panel, or for a more accurate reading (i.e. including skills and supplemental modules such as signal distortion amps) you can drag a module from another setup. This is especially useful for testing the effect of various electronic warfare, including ECM jammers which will display a percentage chance of jamming next to the ship's targeting parameters.
One useful function of EFT is the ability to select damage profiles. This will allow you to view the ship's defence attributes vs (for example) 100% EM damage. You can add your own damage profiles manually by right clicking the defence parameters and choosing 'edit custom profiles', however to make life easy for you, you can add all the common profiles by doing the following:
Find the folder containing EFT, and open the 'config' file in notepad or any other text editor. At the very end, paste the following:
DamageProfile=Serpentis,0,1627,1320,0 DamageProfile=Angels,480,0,719,3058 DamageProfile=Sanshas,1945,1598,0,0 DamageProfile=Guristas,0,570,3504,0 DamageProfile=Blood Raider,613,570,60,0 DamageProfile=Gallente,25,781,1127,0 DamageProfile=Minmatar,615,310,815,1633 DamageProfile=Amarr,1204,1349,0,0 DamageProfile=Caldari,0,795,944,0 DamageProfile=EoM,0,618,1718,0 DamageProfile=Mercenaries,90,634,424,108 DamageProfile=Rogue Drones,86,91,281,964 DamageProfile=EM,1,0,0,0 DamageProfile=Explosive,0,0,0,1 DamageProfile=Thermic,0,1,0,0 DamageProfile=Kinetic,0,0,1,0
Now, if you right click the defence parameters you will be able to select from any of these profiles. Note that almost all of these apply solely to NPC damage types. For PvP use, you may wish to add damage profiles for common PvP ammo types too (for example faction antimatter, barrage, etc).
One of the most useful functions in EFT is the dps graph. Open any two setups, and then click File > New DPS Graph.
This will open a new window looking ralatively blank. In the white box to the right, right click, select add attacker, and choose the setup of your choice. Do the same for the target. For a good demonstration, pick a battleship as the attacker and a frigate as the target.
This will now display a graph of dps infliced by the attacker upon the target at varying ranges. Note that this is raw dps before resistances, and this is directly comparable to the defence parameters of the target ship. This graph takes into account signature radius and tracking, although it will currently be reading both targets as stationary. Because of this, a dps graph is a better determination of a ship's dps output than the figures in the main fitting window, which should be considered theoretical maximums.
Now, notice the two sliders to the right of the graph - these indicate the percentage of each ship's maximum velocity which is transversal. If the slider is central, the ship is either stationary or moving directly towards/away from the other, the further to one side the slider goes, the steeper an angle the ship is flying at, until it reaches 100% in which case the ship is flying at 90 degrees to the other. Note that EFT always thinks ships are moving at their maximum velocity - the sliders only represent transversal, not velocity itself! Also bear in mind that:
- If both sliders are moved the same way, it assumes both participants are flying parallel to each other and transversal is reduced. If both ships were the same speed, this would give 0 transversal again! While this is hardly realistic, doing this does give a decent approximation (although not perfect) of what happens when the slower target attemps to reduce transversal by powering in one direction.
- If both sliders are moved opposite directions, it assumes both participant are passing each other like cars in opposite lanes - the transversal is huge! This could also be used to approximate two ships orbiting each other at roughly the same distance, although it would then provide the maximum possible transversal (i.e. the times when both ships are orbiting on the same plane in opposite directions).
Notice how when one of these sliders is dragged upwards, tracking comes into play and the graph will begin to become more of a dome rather than a simple curve downwards.
You can add multiple attackers and defenders, and EFT will create a new line on the graph for each combination. This is useful for comparing the effectivness of different setups, however to avoid confusion I would stick with 'either' one attacker and multiple targets or one target and multiple attackers.
Note that as you change, activate and deactivate modules on your setups, the graph changes. This is excellent for comparing the effect of a different module, such as survivability with an afterburner Vs microwarpdrive.
The same is true of projected effects, and for the most accurate graph it's worth dragging any projected effects that either ship is likely to be using onto the other (although only if you envisage that module being active and in range, since the graph will assume all projected effects are successful regardless of range!
DPS graphs are a very powerful tool, and are brilliant for:
- Calculating the ideal range for you to engage a given target and achieve max damage (set your target and adjust the speed sliders to an approximation of the orbiting situation, and the peak of the graph is your ideal range).
- Calculating the ideal orbit distance to avoid damage from a given target (e.g. for a skirmisher engaging a larger ship, you can determine whether you are better off trying to get under his guns, or stay out of his optimal range - how close/far do you have to go before the graph is lower?
EFT is an incredibly useful tool, and serves a number of purposes which can be genuinely helpful in setting up your ships. However, there is no substitute for live testing and it is easy to get too involved in theorycraft and lsoe track of how effective things are in the real (or should I say "real internet spaceship") world - something might look brilliant on paper, but that doesn't mean it's brilliant out in space.