First, let me introduce what I intend to be a regular feature here, ‘Eulogy for a Spaceship’. I keep a number of various ships fitted for player-versus-player combat, and I try to make sure to learn from every engagement. As happens to anything used in combat, all ships are eventually destroyed; they deserve recognition for their faithful service, with links to the Battleclinic Killboard record of each fight. So, without further ado, the first Eulogy:
‘Zephyr’, Republic Fleet Firetail
The Firetail is one of my favorite hulls, and this ship was an excellent example of why. Fast and agile, it could chase down and pounce on most other ships. Its small size and agility meant that it could orbit very close and very fast, and its excellent tracking meant that it would take advantage of that by maintaining an extremely high angular velocity.
‘Zephyr’ had a number of successful engagements:
Bunny Sando’s Thrasher and Capsule, total value: ~2.6m ISK
Thrashers have excellent tracking and a huge amount of damage potential, but suffer from the inability to fit much in the way of a defense; the key to killing one in a frigate is to get close fast and outspeed their tracking, because even with their tracking bonuses, their larger signature radius means that you can apply more of your damage potential than they can. That strategy worked well here, and the destroyer wasn’t able to hurt her very much.
agurina’s Federation Navy Comet, total value: ~34.5m ISK
The Gallente Navy’s cognate to the Firetail, the Comet also has high speed and agility. Much like the projectile weapons that the Firetail uses, its hybrid guns have two varieties: railguns and blasters. Railguns are typically long range weapons, taking advantage of the extremely high rate of fire and accuracy to compensate for their lower damage. ‘Zephyr’ had two advantages in this fight: its speed and ability to close rapidly kept the railguns from hitting very well, and its Energy Neutralizer was able to drain the Comet’s capacitor and disable its primary weapon. Ultimately, this proved fatal to the opponent.
CapsulaMortem’s Tormentor, total value: ~11.4m ISK
The Tormentor is one of the Amarr Empire’s basic frigate designs. It is capable of high damage output, and its energy weapons use less capacitor than many similar ships. However, it suffers from a lack of tracking speed, and as with the hybrid weapons of the Comet, its damage can be nullified by draining the ship’s capacitor. Further to the detriment of this particular ship, its active armor tank also required a high amount of energy. Thus, its power sapped and its guns outsped, it quickly turned into a brilliant explosion and a cloud of debris.
Gennesu’s Breacher and Capsule, total value: ~2.9m ISK
The Breacher is the Minmatar Republic’s primary frigate-sized missile platform. Its ability to launch many rockets or light missiles in rapid succession make it quite dangerous to many ships. However, the Firetail’s small size and high speed make it quite resistant to the damage dealt by those weapon systems. Without a particularly hardy defense, the Breacher quickly broke apart under Zephyr’s guns.
Caedmon SilverFalcon’s Atron and Capsule, total value: ~1.9m ISK
The Atron is one of the most common frigates in the Gallente Navy. Its populatiry and ready availability are the best explanation for this quite under-equipped specimen. Taking a ship into a warzone with so many empty equipment slots essentially guarantees its destruction, and this was not an exception.
bp nagazie 2’s Rifter, total value: ~5.7m ISK
Fast, agile, and sporting a relatively high number of weapons, the Rifter is the mainstay of the Minmatar Republic’s frigate fleet. This particular specimen was equipped with heavy armor and larger guns than Zephyr, which proved to be its undoing. It was unable to keep up or to bring its weapons into position to get any damage applied to her, and it too burned quickly. Most of the value in this particular engagement was in its cargo hold, rather than attached to the hull.
bp nagazie 1’s Bantam, total value: ~88,000 ISK
There isn’t much to say about this engagement except that a ship with nothing equipped to it really shouldn’t be in a warzone.
Vorgat Zog’s Condor, total value: ~8.5m ISK
The Condor is similar in design intent to the Breacher, though its Caldari designers favor solid construction and strong shields rather than the Minmatar’s focus on speed. This particular ship was also equipped with a secondary defense, electronic warfare equipment that impeded the opponent’s ability to track its movements with their guns. Unfortunately for him, Zephyr’s excellent tracking was far in excess of that needed to hit it and so it buckled quickly under the barrage.
Total victory value: ~67m ISK
Total loss: ~23.2m ISK
Final ratio: ~3:1
Sadly, there isn’t much to learn from Zephyr’s final engagement; her destruction was more due to inattention on the pilot’s part. Undocking in the border system of Aranir, she was nearly immediately engaged by between five and ten enemy pilots and quickly destroyed. If any moral can be taken, it is to be prepared at all times for the enemy, even when you expect to be safe.
That’s it for today. Remember, keep your eyes open and your guns warm!