Back again with another entry into my Unidentified Wormhole report! This time i’ll be covering the questions of numbers and ships.
Sounds interesting—how many people does it take to complete the new wormholes, and what ship(s) should I fly?
There is technically no right nor wrong ships to fly. Each of the wormholes carries an effect prevalent to that system, so by that alone, using the same type of ship for all of the holes while possible, may not be recommended. The largest ships that can enter with the mass restriction are Orcas and Bowheads. (They are right on the limit, so anything increasing their mass will not be able to enter.)
With that being said, we went ahead and completed the wormholes in cruiser-sized ships.
It should be noted, that realistically (that is, unless you’re considering officer fit battleships), the loss of at least one ship is somewhat guaranteed. The Hikanta in the final room operates like a normal Drifter and has an overshield. Destruction of this overshield will result in the operation of a doomsday and destruction of a vessel in the fleet.
Observations made thus far seem to suggest that the doomsdays from the Hikanta seem to be preferential to logistics vessels in the fleet, while the conventional weapons seem to target the current highest damaging ship. The Hikanta would seemingly pick a target when warping in, switching after 5-10 seconds of damage being applied, and generally sticking to that second target.
During one of the operations that I was flying a Scythe, the overshield had been taken down literally just 2/3 seconds after I had come out of warp. I didn’t even see the Drifter lock me before I was doomsdayed. Every time we brought a logistics ship with us after that, that ship seemed to be the one picked for the doomsday.
I know of at least three different ways to do this complex and they all vary with skills, fleet numbers, and time availability. The only thing that is 100% required for all of the wormholes is a hacking module (Data Analyser) for a yellow core hack (“medium difficulty”). If you are doing the complex properly, you can’t solo it. Technically, if you’ve ever reached the hive/final room, because the sites don’t change location, you can warp to the lobby, take the first acceleration gate, cloak and slowboat to the hive. Going at 8km/s, it will take about 30 minutes to reach the hive room.
Option 1—The “Rolling Cover” tactic:
This was Brave Newbies way of completing one the complexes. It simply relies on having a large fleet. (Brave used approximately 70, but i imagine it’s possible with a number smaller than that.) The fleet essentially is buffer fit, with enough logi to ignore the damage output by both the Drifter battleships and the Sleepers. Nothing is killed until the required destruction of the Hikanta in the final room. With this method setup correctly, it’s possible to run the complex in approximately 20-30 minutes, with only one ship loss.
Option 2—The “Running Silent” tactic:
This was the tactic that our task force used. The smallest number we used was 15. The breakdown of that number there was only four high damage dealing ships, four “meat shields”, one webbing/paint support, and two logistics. The three remaining ships were two hackers and one cloaky brick tank to carry the indexes into the site and elements out of the site. All the ships must have either a cov-ops or Tech 2 cloak. Depending on your luck however, the quickest we did it was two hours; the longest was 4 ½ hours—if you exclude breaks. I would say that this would be the minimum number of ships to bring, and I would recommend more ships if possible, or have some of the hackers be in DPS ships. Once again, there will be at least one ship loss.
Option 3—The “Kamikaze” tactic:
This was theory crafted and on paper it works but because there was an unknown variable it was never fully tested. Simply put, the things that are causing the biggest problems in the complexes are the Drifter battleships. If they are killed using “disposable” high damage ganking ships, it would be possible to run the complex fairly quickly. The issue here was that the Drifter Battleship respawn was unknown. We estimated that there were five Drifter battleships in the complex at any one time, but if they were destroyed, we didn’t know how quickly the new ones would appear. (If we base it on the Hikanta respawn, it would have been approximately 15 minutes.)
The running examples of the two confirmed to-be working fleets:
Brave used a fleet of Caracels with supporting Ospreys.
For most of our operations, our fleets used Stratios’ as the high damage ships, Vexors as meat shields, a Rapier as support, and T1 logistics in line with what was required.
That concludes my feedback on what ships and numbers to bring. Still sounding good? Keep an eye out for the next part, which will have the real meat of the topic—running the complexes and what you should expect!