Wednesday, March 27, 2013

GSB stuff

Fighter notes
Generally fighters are all about speed tank. Some breakpoints:
3.7: cruiser defense lasers
2.9: fighter pulse lasers, most anti-fighter guns
2.6: cruiser pulse laser
2.0: ion cannons and fighter rockets, frig fast missiles, tribe frig cannons (many technically 1.9)
1.5: most frig missiles, frig beam laser
1.0: many anti-cruiser weapons, including cruiser laser, fast missiles, cruiser light plasma, frig plasma, 
0.6: most cruiser missiles, plasma guns, cruiser EMP
Slower than 0.6 gives some dodge rate, but won't make you immune to the above stuff. 0.1 and below (most fleets) gives almost no evasion whatsoever against the better tracking stuff. You can still get a bit of dodge rate against the anti-cruiser guns, and smaller ships have an independent dodge rate based on their size. It's multiplied on the base tracking hit chance rather than a separate calculation, and it caps at 50%. Not great for fighters but 30-40% dodge chance on a frig is nice.
  • Fighter Pulse Laser: Insane dps, on par with cruiser beam lasers, but requires so much power that it's hard to field. Will beat other laser fighters in a dps war, even though they fly slower. Most anti-fighter guns on larger ships can shoot down a pulse fighter (fastest is rebel icarus at about 2.3) without a tractor beam. Pulse fighters for most races cap below 2, which means they'll lose to rocket fighters and ion frigates.
  • Fighter Laser: Better at armor penetration than pulse; needs fewer crits to break a 12 armor tank. Much lighter too, rebs and swarm can field 2.6+ speed fighters that can outfly cruiser guns.
  • Fighter Rocket: The reason we fit 12 armor hulls. Can break any frig shield tank. Horrible dps; can't hit other fighters without painting. Even that is dodgey. Rocket fighters can hit speeds of over 3.7; they can't be hit by normal weapons without tractors.
  • Fighter Painter: Dramatically improves hit chance on those 0.6, 0.5 cruiser missiles, and helps fighter rockets actually hit other fighters. Can hit 3.x speeds depending on hull.
Frigate notes
The only valid frig tank is ewar tank with emp2 and rescuer orders. Frigs can't tank and their job is to do as much damage as possible.
Support frigs sit behind the main line and shoot shit while the main line ships take the hits. They're typically loaded with beams, smallbeams, or missiles, though you can also run plasma frigs for taking down cruiser shields.
Attack frigs zerg the enemy with ion cannons and break shields. These are a bit hard to field because you have to put them slightly behind your main line so they don't get hit with alpha, but they also need to be fast to close in and shoot before they get popped. If it's possible to get .51 or faster frigs they can actually avoid a lot of cruiser fire. Attack frigs generally fit ion cannons.

  • Frigate Beam: 49 armor pen on a frig gun. Pretty good in the situations it's needed; it can break an interim armor tank without too much need for a big 70 pen cruiser piercer. Kinda mediocre dps.
  • Frigate SmallBeam: 39 pen is a lot less than 49, but it deals more damage for the cost than a frigate beam. If you're only looking to easily shred through light tanks, it's ok. Overall very specialized weapon; might be worth fitting on frigbeam ships to meet power requirements since it is less gen taxing.
  • Ion Cannon: One of the highest dps guns in the entire game, fit on a frig. Moderate to bad range, breaks all shields and 12 armor tanks. Fast frigs with ions are one of the strongest things in GSB. 2.0 tracking too.
  • Anti-Fighter Missile: 12.5 tracking, wtf. The only thing that makes these things miss is size modifiers, and even then you end up with like, 30% hit chance against the fastest fighters in the game. Very high dps against unshielded ships too, if it can get to knife fight distance.
  • EMP 2: Use these instead of EMP 1. Probably the best EMP in the game, can lock a ship down with 61% uptime if it doesn't have emp shields. Since you can fit this on large volumes of individual frigs (minimizing volley fire) with rescuer orders, it dramatically improves your fleet's tanking potential, especially shield tanks.
  • Fast Missile: Higher effective dps than frig missile. Note that it can't break cruiser shield tanks; set these guys to vulture so they focus down damaged ships.
  • Frig Plasma: A fast, long-ranged sniper cannon. Not very accurate; should only target cruisers and should prioritize shielded cruisers.
  • Frig Tractor: Goes without saying for anti-fighter setups.
  • Tribe RFC: This is a bit of a meta gun that relies on cheaper shield 2 tanking (instead of reflective shield). If the enemy uses cruiser shield 2 tanking, it is a much cheaper, though less effective, way of frigate rushing. Ions are better probably, even for tribe.
Cruiser notes
Cruisers are basically the backbone of GSB. The entire game engine is basically built around fielding cruisers, and they have the most options. It still boils down to rush versus range, though there are some variations.
Missiles deal good dps on paper, but end up being weaker in practice due to the oddities of missile reloading. It is better for many fleets to run some missiles and some cruiser beams and have the missiles focus on shielded ships. For fleets with cruiser laser rush or ion rush, you can probably skip on ranged missiles and focus entirely on lasers. It's better to err a bit on the cautious side though and field a few missile ships, if only because MWM ships are always in range.
  • Cruiser Beam: The CBL shreds all but "invincible" armor tanks pretty reliably and does more raw dps than its competitors. If you're fed or rebel you should run the fusion beams as they are better.
  • Proton Beam: Can break armor tank and is much cheaper than the CBL. It can also break shield 2 tanks, but not reflective shield tanks. Worth fitting if you want to break ultra-armor tanks or suspect a lot of shield 2 tanking instead of reflective.
  • Fusion (Fed): The best beam in the game probably with better tracking than the CBL. Less pen, but it can break shield 2 tanks and has a longer optimum range. Better against frigs due to 1.5 tracking, but still good against cruisers. If you're not expecting a lot of frigates or shield 2 but are afraid of heavy armor, CBL is better as its dps is a bit higher.
  • Fusion (Reb): Not enough pen to break a shield 2 tank (barely), but is in most ways better than the CBL due to its longer range, lower price, and easier reqs. Worse tracking though!
  • Imperial Laser: Similar to the rebel fusion, but with enormous range -- nearly missile range. Great tracking and decent dps, though not as good as the CBL. Still probably worth using over the CBL for the range advantage, especially against faster ships.
  • Cruiser Defense: Insanely high tracking and short range. Can hit everything except the fastest rocket fighters and shoots very rapidly. Will utterly shred most fighters even if they are not tractored.
  • Cruiser Pulse: An interim gun that can shoot down laser fighters and some painters, but has better range and is more suitable against other ships. Great for hunting frigs, can break down armor tanks due to high ROF/crits and decent pen, and is light on resources.
  • Cruiser Laser: The knife-fighting gun of cruisers. This gun is all about close-range, in your face blasting. Deals the highest dps of any weapon and can break any shield tank.
  • Tribe Howitzer: A faster-shooting rapid cannon that is easier on ship reqs and has a bit better tracking. It's cheaper than the Cruiser Laser and should be fielded anytime a design calls for Cruiser Lasers. It breaks armor tanks amazingly well due to its rapid fire rate, causing immense volumes of crits.
  • Decoy Missile: I dunno, short range. I'm not sure how effective cluttering up enemy scram reload time is. Seems dubious unless you've got a lot of EMP2s.
  • Fast Missile: They have one of the highest effective dps of any missile, especially because .9 tracking makes their hitrate substantially better. Painters help. Kind of shortish range, though 900 is still pretty far.
  • Cruiser Missile: Longest-range missile in the game. Slower than MWM, thus not so good.
  • Multi-Warhead: The infamous MWM is one of the strongest, highest-damage missiles in the game. Its effective dps is roughly that of cruiser fast missiles (paper dps is much higher, but impossible to reach) against painted targets, and a bit lower due to poor tracking against unpainted targets. They are extremely long range, and break shield tanks. Super good.
  • Cruiser Rocket: I've heard these are really sick. They have a lot of random misses, but they still perform really well with high dps. Short range though, but since your alternatives are plasma or lower dps missiles for shield breaking, it works out okay. Fast missiles are probably a safer pick overall though.
  • Firefly Rocket: Better cruiser rockets. Worth using due to high projectile speed. Fast missiles are probably still better.
  • Cruiser Plasma: The only plasma worth fitting. Incredible range, mediocre dps. Really unreliable accuracy; in challenges where you fight enemy shield tanks, battles you win may be lost in replays due to the RNG of these guns.
  • EMP: Huge duration but also a long reload. Awful tracking makes it a weak choice compared to frig EMP.

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