Wednesday, 9 November 2016

Flying interceptors

This past weekend was spent (mostly) flying interceptors. I've flown them a great deal in the past, when they were good solo ships. These days, not so much.

This is probably a good thing. T2 ships should be focused on their roles, and dps simply isn't the role of an interceptor. Holding things down for other people to dps is.

I won't pretend I'm more than a decent interceptor pilot - getting that initial tackle in the best possible time requires a bit more aggression. How much do you overheat your prop mod? How narrow do you make your approach angle? Being slightly more cautious, I tend to be ever so slightly slower to land tackle. Overheating your prop mod to land point means having less overheat available to outrun any drones once tackle has been established, and a narrower approach risks getting blapped on the way in.

So while I'm a little slower to land point, I'm also pretty good at actually staying on the field once I'm there. We lost a few interceptors over the weekend, but I wasn't one of them. I was also never forced to break tackle on a target, although there were some close calls. Partly luck, no doubt, but also a slightly more conservative approach to flying.

Being an interceptor pilot has become more difficult, I think, than it once was. This is mostly because of microjump drives. Back in the 'good old days', you could simply hit them with a warp disruptor and chill out at 23+ km (assuming a fleet interceptor). That left you with a free mid slot for a web, which helped you kill drones.

Now, you need a disruptor and a scram. The disruptor is necessary for initial tackle, and because getting too close to anything sub-battleship is still too dangerous, while the scram is required to shut down a potential mjd. This means giving up the defensive web, and flying well inside neut and web range in a tight orbit that drops your speed.

At least you can now ignore bubbles, which makes you a little more likely to be able to warp out when things get too hot. Assuming multiple interceptors with good communication and active tanks, you can take turns bouncing off the field to rep up, before warping back in on the other inti's location.

Of course, this has also turned interceptors into the default null sec 'taxi'. Fast, agile, and immune to bubbles, the interceptor will probably get you where you want to go, especially if you fit for travel.

On a less serious note, interceptor pilots also miss some nice killmails because you are busy holding down the secondary (or tertiary) target while the dps deals with the primary.

It's a tough life.

No comments:

Post a Comment