Monday, 21 February 2011

Punisher 6.2

Going forward, there will be slight change to the opening pictures of my Punisher Plan posts. Initially, I had intended to have a different Punisher picture for each post, and I thought that 20 Punishers was about doable. If, however, I am actually going to survive some of my fights (*gasp*), then I may well need rather more than 20 images. This being the case, I'm now going to start each pvp post with a picture of my opponents ship, rather than my own.

The fit:

3 Dual Light Pulse 2 (Navy Multifrequency & Scorch)
Small Neut 1

1 MN Afterburner 1
Warp Scrambler 1

Small Armor Repair System 1
Adaptive Nano Plating 2
Damage Control 2
200mm Rolled Tungsten

Small Auxiliary Power Relay

The hunt:

Another day, another high sec roam. I began cruising the busier belts, and in the course of my travels I came upon an Arbitrator mining away. Now, I know from experience that rigging an Arbitrator to mine does not require sacrificing one iota of dps, so I very nearly left him be; my past experiences against cruisers has not been encouraging. However, one thing gave me pause; he only had 4 mining drones out.

As former drone user, having less than 5 drones out screams poor drone skills. This being the case, I thought it was worth the risk. On the other hand, I also decided to orbit at nearly 6000m, as this would put me near the edge of scram range, so if things went wrong I had a chance to bail.

So I flipped the can, and moved into my chosen orbit. The Arbitrator obligingly started targeting me, and I returned fire (he had opened with his missile launcher). He was quite slow to get his combat drones out, and things went really, really well for me. I was taking only minor damage, and he was half way through his armor. I love Scorch!

However, while I was on the "backswing" of my orbit, he decided it was time to get out, and engaged his afterburners. I tried to turn in time, but it was no use. He broke free of scram range and warped off!

I was pretty choked at having let him get away, and I spent the rest of my aggression timer searching the other belts for him, but I was pretty sure he had gone to a station to repair. Eventually I moved on.

Later, though, I came back through that system and found the Arbitrator back at the same belt. Overjoyed at the second chance, I flipped the can and hit orbit. This time I was nice and close; he was not getting away this time! 

Except, he did not need to; the fight went quite differently. He immediately started neuting me, trying to shut me down. I noticed right away, however, so I was able to burn out of his scram range and warp out.

I quickly docked (for the free shield repair) and went back for more, but he had left the system.

Post battle review:

This encounter was a huge learning experience for me, largely because it was so full of mistakes.

First, I let my target get away. I saw it happening, but I couldn't prevent it. Suddenly, all those agility skills seem far more valuable than they did before. Sometimes, you need your ship to respond right now. While I won't be able to train them any time soon, navigation skills just went up the priority ladder.

However, I also failed to look at where he was going. I had the right to combat. If I had immediately taken a guess at his location and warped to zero, I might have been able to get the kill. 
Then I wasted my aggression timer searching the belts when it was quite obvious that he was not coming out until the timer expired. If  I had left the system for a few minutes, though, he might have ventured out early. I got so involved in trying to find him, I did not stop and think of how I might lure him out.

Round two was quite different, and it was only after the fact that I realised why. In the first battle I had outranged his neut! An obvious point to most pilots, perhaps, but I have never been able to control the range before, and it is only since moving to T2 guns that I have been able to deal respectable dps outside 3000m. Quite by accident, though, I had done exactly the right thing when we first clashed. If my nav skills had been better, or I had been orbiting a little close (but still outside neut range), I would have easily won our encounter.

Despite noticing immediately that I was being neuted, and responding appropriately, I still could have done more in our second encounter. I was only at half cap when I got out of neut range, and I had taken very little armor damage. If, instead of fleeing, I had kept range, I could probably have turned the battle around. Instead, I got rattled and bailed. Not blowing up is great, but winning is better.

Lessons for the future:

Scorch range > scram range > neut range. This is awesome, and I need to learn to work with this. Nav skills will help, but are beyond my immediate reach.

When faced with a fleeing target, pay attention to where they are going. I might be able to catch them there.

Finally, I need to Keep It Together. I'm throwing away kills just because I get rattled.


  1. isn't medium neut range 10-12km? he must have been using a small neut on you

  2. You are right about the range, and the amount I was being neuted for is consistant with a small neut.

    I'm guessing that the significantly greater fitting requirements for a medium neut would have made it difficult to fit high grade mining lasers.

    Or perhaps I just got lucky.

  3. Kudos on trying to take an Arbitrator in your Punisher, they can be a terrifying opponent in a Frigate, so just having the guts to engage is a big step. A couple of pieces of advice for next time...As to your fit, there's almost no reason to ever use Meta 0 Modules. You can pick up a Fleeting Progressive Warp Scrambler in Jita for about 13k, and it will get you an extra 750m of range. A J5b will run about 25k, and gets you an extra 1,150m. This might have been the difference in this fight. Always make sure to run a price check, and you'll usually find that Meta 2 or 3 modules can be found at the same price as the standard Tech I, but with some pretty impressive increases in performance and fitting requirements. Also, seeing that you've decided against the AC Punisher, check out for some ideas on fits and general advice for using them. I'd go with Suleiman's Gatling Pulse fit if I was ever going to use a Laser Punisher myself. GL, and fly dangerous.

  4. Still progress dude, you seem to be learning quickly.