F1 Pusher’s Survival Guide to Large Fleets: Part IIGeorgik Sojik
“I think the title of this should be changed to how to be useless twat.” – Some Guy on the internet.
“I thought this guy was bitter but then I got to the bio and it all made sense.” – Some Other Guy on the internet.
“It took me entirely too long to realize that was a joke article, I was about to come to the comments to shit on it.” – Some Redditor.
“Guys, I might have scouted the PL move-op in my archon for about five jumps. Everyone else in the fleet got safe in a pos and I totally didn’t know what was going on.” – The Writer!On the heels of the great success that was F1 Pusher’s Survival Guide to Large Fleets I was allowed to complete the rules! We did it guys! Go Reddit! Last week we discussed how to survive the grueling process of joining a fleet and getting to the fight safely. You’ll remember that we discussed fitting ships properly, never flying logi, and most importantly making sure you have your comms all sorted out by muting the FC and making a nice sub-channel for yourself. This week, we’re going to talk about what to do when you’re stuck in TiDi with the fleet. You’ve travelled the 20 some-odd gates, and you’re in the system the fight is about to take place. You’ve made sure that you’re not the first to jump into the system, but you’re also pretty sure you’re not going to be the last one either. You are a lone-wolf flying in the middle of a fleet of sheeple. You’re with them, but you’re not with them. With all luck, you and some chill-bros are all hanging out in a sub and trying to look as much like everyone else as possible.
Rule 6: Entertain Yourself.Now, I’m not sure if any of you have ever been stuck orbiting an FC, but it’s about as entertaining as watching snails mate. And more than likely, you don’t even know why you’re there. Are we saving or shooting this POS? Whose POS is this? I know it’s not mine. I didn’t set it up. Why am I here again APOTHNE!? Undoubtedly your FC has probably been telling everyone else in the fleet some bullshit story on why you’re waiting. Let me tell you something, I know what really goes on in those FC channels, and it’s malarkey. More than likely, the FC is in a convo with the enemy FC and they’re trying to work out the specifics of the fight right there on the spot. Despite both having the timer and the advance knowledge, and everything. They’re just playing flirty grab-ass with each other, trying to psyche each other out. Occasionally you’ll end up with a gung-ho FC really does want to fight, and he’s busy trying to coach the other FC on how to lead his ragtag fleet. Let’s be honest, that guy getting coached is terrible and will probably die in a fire anyway. This is where the space bushido is the strongest. Your FC knows who is FCing the other fleet. All this could be settled in a matter of seconds, kill that guy and just go home! But they don’t do that. They won’t tell you the hostile FC because then it’d be over too quickly. Nope, these sadistic FCs want you to suffer for their amusement. Now that that little secret is out there, what can you do with yourself? Well the most obvious one is to take full advantage of the porn links that are flooding the fleet channel by this point. Of course that’s not always an option. No the best way to spend time in EVE is by not playing EVE while it’s open. Personally, I’d recommend pulling up a game of Dota2/League with some of the buds down in the Freedom Sub-Channel. Honestly, the FCs are probably doing the same thing while they wait, so why should they be the only ones having fun? I can’t count the number of times there have been Chiv pings on “Other Games” IRC channel while we waited for *something* to happen. Who has the patience to wait for the FCs to figure out if there is going to be a fight? Certainly not me, and it shouldn’t be you either. So get a book, get some popcorn, watch a movie, do a full workout routine, do something for you, because the FC certainly isn’t.
Rule 7: Survive!Now, this is probably one of the most controversial topics. If you’re a CFC member, you’re trained to die as quickly as possible for the quick pay out. After all, for them, isk is king. However, in the elite pvp circles of PL, the most kills is what’s going to get you all the cred. So, here is what you need to do. Try to be as close to the middle of the fleet as possible. Don’t ever get ahead of the FC, but try not to be on the ass-end of the fleet either. Of course, if the FC has everyone orbit him, get as close to him as possible. As mentioned before, the hostile FC will almost ignore your FC, so just look like you’re as important as him. In fact, you might just want to name your ship “I’m the FC” to ensure that you won’t get shot. Remember, there is a whole other group of people who want to kill you, but will do anything they can to avoid shooting at the FC. If they take away your internet spaceship, then you’ll be left in a pod, and flying home in one of those is dumb. Not to mention it takes forever for a pod to die in TiDi. Literally forever. Trying to get back to the fight can be a pain as well. The best thing you can do is get there once, and stay there.
Rule 8: Fire Control.If you followed any of my fitting instructions from last time, you’re probably wondering why you got this silly civilian rail-gun bolted onto your otherwise pristine isk-making salvager boat. Now, this little gun probably won’t kill a thing. I tried doing the tutorial the other week with one of these and it takes days for the basic training rat to die. So what use will this be in a fleet fight? Well, the way EVE works, if you make any sort of overtly aggressive act at another player, you get on the killmail. If you simply aggress everyone on the grid, you’ll get onto a lot of kill mails. Now, I know, some ships have these stupid bonuses to missiles, but missiles are dumb and are only for PvE. You want that quick, direct damage on the enemy ship, and quickly move onto the next one. It’s not your plan to kill anything, there are nine-hundred and ninety-nine other people in the fleet who are going to kill that thing for you. All you have to do to be a PvP expert is apply 0% damage to a ship. Now this can be done in several ways. The best one I’ve found is by fitting a bunch of sensor boosters, usually with the resolution script for faster lock times. Watch the overview, as targets are called, be the first to lock that ship up, fire one cycle and continue onto the secondary and anything else being broadcast. Is it a friendly broadcasting for reps, shoot him too, friendly-fire still gets you a kill if they die. Sometimes, there are lulls in the fighting where things are out of the fleet’s optimal range. Remember: with turrets there is no max range. As long as you can lock a target, you can get on that kill mail. These are the times I like to switch out to the range scripts on my sensor booster, and just take single shots at everything on the battlefield. Sure, they might not die… but they might die, and that means another free kill for you. Look, if you want to be an elite PvP’er, it’s all about the stats, and getting on as many kills as possible is the way to do it. While other people in your subchannel are pulling up another game of Dota2/League, you’ll be getting on all those extra future killmails. Another useful tool for getting on killmails, and annoying all the Ishtar pilots around you, is fitting a smartbomb. Now, most FCs will have people fit these to counter stealth bombers, or frigates, or maybe even hostile drones. That might be all fine and good, but the best thing they’re for, is inflicting damage on your own fleet. Just like with shooting the guy broadcasting for reps, tag as many friendly pilots as you can with your smartbombs. Chances are they’re all going to die too, so why not get on a few more killmails, right?
Rule 9: We Love Logistics.Ok, so sometimes you’ll mess up, and I mean really mess up. Maybe you made a character who’s name is 12345434A. Or perhaps you dared to fly too close to the enemy fleet and they’ve suddenly started targeting you. The first thing to remember is that your ship was not made to tank. With all those sensor boosters and damage amplifiers we’ve fit, there really isn’t a lot of buffer between life and death. The second thing is to remember that you owe it to yourself to live. The FC isn’t the most important thing on that battlefield, you are my friend. Don’t be the pilot feeding kills to the enemy. But what can you do? Unless you fit an amazing local tank, which you didn’t, you’re going to need some help. Now, you might remember that there is a sub-fleet of second-class pilots who were dumb enough to be tricked into flying logistics. It’s our duty to make sure those pilots don’t get so uppity. As soon as the hostile fleet starts targeting, it’s the duty of every F1 pusher to remind the logistics pilots whose important. Just go ahead and spam the broadcast for reps button. They might say that once is enough, but once is never enough. Spam the button until you get reps, and just keep hitting it for good measure. Sometimes, you don’t get the option to see the yellow boxing, bombers just send out those cheat-hax-bombs and can ruin your day completely. But that’s fine as well, when you take bomb damage, and let’s be honest, it will be pretty extensive damage, just go ahead and broadcast for reps on that too. Occasionally, it might seem like those logistics pilots are slacking. You need reps that second, and not when they damn well feel like it. Don’t think it’s above your station to go down into that logistics sub-channel and tell those bastards to get to work. If they were any good at this game they wouldn’t be flying logistics. And if they were any good at flying logistics, you’d be getting reps, which you’re not. Just keep yelling and let them know you’re going to die until you don’t die.
Rule 10: Make that Dollar
So, some of you observant folk probably noticed that a lot of my fits from rule 2 have tractor beams and salvagers on them. Actually, you’ll see all of them do. All you need is one gun, multiple is good for chaining targets, but on the smaller ships, one is more than enough. It’s the same with marauders and PvE, right? I mean, there are only 4 turret/launcher hardpoints, so really, that’s all you would ever need on a PvP battleship. What you need to do with those other slots, load them up with tractor beams and salvagers. There shouldn’t be any reason why the FCs are making bank off the fleets, but you’re left penniless for your efforts. While the FC is calling out targets, and screaming, you can simply just start scooping up all that expensive loot that’s now littering the battlefield. Pandemic Legion used to make trillions of isk doing this, but you know what happens? God damn, BNI and TEST follow us around like vultures and try to steal the loot. Unless you want to be a poor EVE player, you gotta fit all that salvaging equipment onto one ship. Get the good loot before the vultures from HERO Coalition come and take it all. Another thing to consider is deploying a friendly Mobile Tractor Unit to help you clean up the battle in the middle of a fight. Some people like to put it on the edge of the battle, way out there is hard to defend. The much better place is right in the middle of the fleet. That way the people you’re surrounded by can help protect it. At this point, you might want to remind those slackers in the logistics ships that they’re responsible for keeping the MTU alive as well. Be careful of your fleet mates though, they might start to take notice and try and loot the wrecks before they get to the MTU. So there you go. If you follow these simple rules, you’ll be able to call yourself an elite PvP’er. I would be remiss if I didn’t mention that there is one FC whom I never mute, and that’s Elise Randolph, just because he’s an all around great guy. Oh, and shoutout to Jarnis McPieksu, who made all those amazing Magic: The Gathering™ cards for his Arts and Crafts. If you’re interested in more elite tactics, feel free to leave a comment below and we’ll take all of your ideas into consideration for another survival guide.