F*ck Ishtars Vol. VApothne
Back when I first moved to lowsec—the barren wastelands of Aridia specifically—at the end of 2012, the roaming fleet comp of the time was the battlecruiser (BC). This was just before the Odyssey expansion and the rise of the T1 cruiser and its cheap logi. However, this is my article: even though you get more bang for your buck roaming in T1 cruisers, and they’re a heck of a lot more maneuverable, I can roam in BCs if I want to! Even the ones from yesteryear’s notoriety post-nerfbat.
The tl;dr of BCs vs cruisers is that with the BCs you get to double the tank with an extra 25 to 50 percent DPS and a lot more utility, but you take a huge drop in mobility, each hull costs you an extra 30m and requires additional modules, you also lose all hope of sig tanking anything. Speaking of lowsec, battlecruisers are verboten in medium plexes, a place where many fights will take place. (And frightened opponents can hide from you.)
Selectable damage types, okay projection for a brawling comp, plenty of tackle and DPS with a utility mid for EWAR. Using something like my smallgorors as a tether, you can happily motor around grid, blapping your standard AB cruisers with few issues.
Yes, I know that I’m using 220s rather than 425s, but the 425s have a small gain in DPS with a whole host of fitting issues, and the 220s track a little better which is always nice.
Tank vs Gank:
There are two nice ways to tank your Hurricane, either as in the above example with double energized adaptive nano membranes (EANM) and double gyro, or if you want to be a little beefier, you can go for three active hardeners and one gyro. Here are the stats, unheated:
Medium neut vs No medium neut:
Swapping out a trimark for an ancillary current router, you can happily fit a medium neut; whereupon I’d recommend using that spare mid for a small cap booster over anything else. Swapping a little tank and the utility mid for a medium neut on every ship is a pretty reasonable trade, if these decisions are going to be based on how much tank you need, or rather can sacrifice for the extra utility. Generally speaking, the lower numbers in fleet, the less tank you need to catch reps.
If you’ve read FI III you won’t surprised to find that my favourite cheap armour support ship is the Celestis.
Anchor with your logi, smartbomb off errant drones, and you have four lovely bonused damps, useful in so many situations.
I’m serious, I promise. No, really. Look, just bear with me okay?
Downsides are to be expected here; you’re not very fast and pretty much locked into kinetic damage (which is great against what exactly? I’ve never hear an FC yell “QUICK! SWITCH TO KINETIC DAMAGE!”), but on the upside you have a beastly tank and some great DPS. You can swap a ballistic control system for a nano to drop 60 DPS for an extra 100 m/s (more with links & overheat), but I’m not entirely sure it’s worth it. Similar to the Hurricane, you end up choosing between tank and utility. In this case you can choose a four-slot tank for one utility mid, or a three-slot tank for two, be they tackle or more conventional EWAR.
Just like the Hurricane, with a sacrifice to tank and some DPS you can fit a medium neut—a trade not to be immediately dismissed. Capacitor warfare is a powerful tool. The addition of the cap booster to this fit also safeguards your Drakes from having their hardeners neuted off.
For logi I’d advise either your standard AB shield T1 logi or the MWD Osprey I mentioned at the end of FI III.
Naturally you’re going to want target painters, and HAMs apply damage pretty terribly to frigates so a RLM Bellicose anchored with the logis will work wonderfully.
Naturally, swap the MWD to an AB as necessary.
As always, if you have any ship or fleet ideas you think would be great for this series, feel free to send them to me on Twitter @CallMeApoth.