Fractal Softworks Forum

Starsector => General Discussion => Topic started by: sirrealist on January 30, 2013, 02:54:54 PM

Title: Please Assist With Fleet Loadout - Current and New Ships
Post by: sirrealist on January 30, 2013, 02:54:54 PM
Hey guys!

I'm still fairly new to this game, but I'm starting to get the hang of it. I've got a "fleet" of 1 cruiser and 2 destroyers (I like the big ships with staying power over the smaller ships, though the wolf frigate is pretty sweet, I'll probably stock up on those when I find some). The problem is, I'm not very good (I think) at fitting my ships with good weaponry. So, what I'd like to do is lay out what I have with current load out, and get your opinions. I get the basic idea of kinetic VS shields, HE VS Armor, etc. but I'm nto sure I'm really doing this right. It should also be noted that I've done the load out mostly using whatever I had on hand, because I didn't have enough cash, and I only knew about the Hegemony base. I just found out that Tri had a base, and I arrived there with $99k and an itch to buy some ships and correct my load out. So, after the list of what I have, I'm also gonna list the new ships I want to buy, and would also love to get thoughts on load out for those. Without further adieu, I give you my fleet:

Hammerhead Destroyer (Flagship) - 80 ordinance points:
Two Assault Chainguns up front (linked, manual control, group 1)
Two Reaper Torpedoes up front (alternating, manual control, group 2)
Two LR PD Lasers in the two forward turrets (linked, autofire, group 3)
Two PD Lasers in the two rear turrets (linked, autofire, group 3)
12 Caps
17 Vents
Expanded Mags Mod

Enforcer Destroyer (AI controlled) - 100 ordinance points:
Two Harpoon MRMs up front (alternating, manual control, group 1)
Two Salamander MRMs up front (Alternating, manual control, group 1)
Assault Chaingun in the middle forward turret (linked, autofire, group 2)
Two Light Dual Autocannons in the two forward-facing left/right turrets (linked, autofire, group 2)
Two Light Dual Machine Guns in the two side-facing turrents (linked, autofire, group 2)
7 Caps
10 Vents
Expanded Mags
Accelerated Shields
Auto Repair Unit
Blast Doors

Eagle Cruiser (AI Controlled) - 140 ordinance points:
Assault Chaingun in the middle forward hardpoint (linked, manual fire, group 1)
Two Heavy Autocannons in the left/right forward hardpoints (linked, manual fire, group 1)
Two Harpoon MRMs in the two side-mount hardpoints (alternating, manual fire, group 2)
Three Antimatter Blasters in the three next turrets, forward, left and and right (linked, autofire, group 3)
Mining Blaster in the big middle forward-facing turret (linked, autofire, group 4)
Four Tactical Lasers in the 4 smaller turrets facing to the sides and rear (linked, autofire, group 4)
12 Caps
16 Vents
Blast Doors

Now, since I have so much cash and am at the Tri base for the first time, I thought I'd buy a Medusa and an Apogee. I'll add another Medusa to the fleet when I have the cash. I have no idea how to configure these guys, since these Tri weapons are all new to me, mostly. I realyl have no idea what weapons should be autofire and which shouldn't (especially for AI controlled ships), how to determine which weapons are better for which slots (other than how many ordinance points it uses), and how many vents and caps I need. Everything I've done so far has been guesswork.

Sssooooo... thoughts on my current loadout, and what I should do with the new Medusa and Apogee? Any other info I can provide that would be helpful, like screen shots or something?

Title: Re: Please Assist With Fleet Loadout - Current and New Ships
Post by: Wyvern on January 30, 2013, 03:55:08 PM
Some comments, in no particular order:

For AI use, it does not matter if a group is marked autofire or not.  It matters a great deal what weapons are in which groups, however - I've had cases where the AI simply refused to fire certain weapons, and re-adjusting weapon groups fixed that.  Generally, this is easy to test using the simulator from the ship refit screen - go in, put up some opponents, and put your ship on autopilot (default key is 'u', I think?).

LR PD Lasers are generally a bad choice - there are some situations where they work well, but most of the time you're better off with tactical lasers... which aren't PD at all.  For the Hammerhead, I'd suggest replacing the LR PD lasers with tactical lasers... and the PD lasers with Burst PD lasers; it'll give you better overall protection from missiles, and the tactical lasers are decent anti-fighter & support weapons.

Then again, I always prefer a primary setup of kinetic guns; a pair of heavy needlers would do nicely, or one heavy needler and one heavy mauler.  Assault Chainguns are usually not that good; low per-shot damage means they aren't awesome against armor despite being high-explosive type.  My suggestion for a hammerhead loadout would be:
1 heavy mauler, group 1, manual control
1 heavy needler, group 2, autofire defaults to on - with the note that you'll turn autofire *off* during combat if you're getting high on flux, facing an overloaded or otherwise unshielded target, etc.
2 tactical lasers, front turrets, group 3, autofire - you'll only turn this off if you're up against something with decent shields, in which case they're not worth the flux to keep them online.  Usually I'll just leave them on.
2 burst pd lasers, back turrets, group 4, autofire - leave this online basically all the time.
- and, yes, nothing in the small missile slots; I'd rather spend those ordnance points on vents, capacitors, and hull mods.  Your mileage may vary, but I tend to find the heavy mauler is strong enough that you don't really need missiles.

Eagle: As with hammerhead, you probably want to upgrade to heavy maulers & heavy needlers when you can (limits including cash, available guns, available ordnance points).  Mining blaster probably best dropped - very flux inefficient, and the eagle doesn't have that much to spare, plus the antimatter blasters & heavy mauler both nicely cover the high-per-shot-damage armor-cracker niche.  I'd suggest graviton beams for the three medium turrets - they're highly efficient, good anti-fighter weapons, and generally pretty effective at putting pressure on shielded targets; with those installed, it might even be worth considering switching main guns to 2x heavy mauler, 1x heavy needler.  And, last, burst PD - at least for the rear two turrets that are covering your engines.
Edit: Oops, forgot one important detail.  The eagle is a cruiser.  You just about always want either Dedicated Targeting Core or Integrated Targeting Unit on a cruiser or capital ship; they really make a big difference.

Enforcer: I don't use enforcers, so someone else will have to offer advice here.  Only thing I will say is: flak cannons are awesome point defense weapons; dual flak even more so (though regular flak is cheaper and usually plenty) - I'd consider replacing the light dual machine guns with flak cannons.

Medusa: An excellent ship; especially survivable if you can add extended & accelerated shields.  For anti-pirate work, I'd suggest a primarily beam setup - gravitons, tactical lasers, maybe a burst PD or two (I usually go with either the two rear side turrets, or the central rear turret & the two front small turrets).  Perhaps add some small kinetic weapon in the front hardpoints - railguns, maybe?
Alternately, fit it for a strike role - heavy blasters, some PD or tactical lasers, and as many vents & capacitors as you can cram in.  Unstable Injector might also be a good call - let it get in & out of strike range a bit more easily.  Play around with the simulator some, see what actually works; heavy blasters are exceptionally flux-hungry, and letting the AI use them could just be a recipe for a dead Medusa.

Apogee: The Apogee is at its best as a flagship - under AI control it will frequently set its drones to roaming, letting them wander out of its shield bubble where they're much more likely to die.  Still, even under AI control, it can do pretty well; just, in that case, you may want to favor more flux-friendly loadouts than heavy blasters or plasma cannon.  For Apogee loadouts, I suggest looking here: - in particular, the first one in my post ( might be a decent template to work from.
Title: Re: Please Assist With Fleet Loadout - Current and New Ships
Post by: PerturbedPug on January 30, 2013, 04:04:21 PM
On the Hammerhead, I find that LR PD lasers are quite useless and prefer burst PDs much better if it is posible. And on the Eagle, I usualy never put anything in the missle slots to save on OP. The enforcers is really good with rockets instead of missles. The eagle would also need PD instaed of tac lasers and replace the anti matters with another energy instead. Everything else seems fine to me.
Title: Re: Please Assist With Fleet Loadout - Current and New Ships
Post by: DeMatt on January 30, 2013, 04:47:42 PM
My personal favorite setup for an Eagle is a "sniper" loadout:
For hullmods, Integrated Targeting Unit/Dedicated Targeting Core + Expanded Magazines are essential;  I tend to max out on vents before adding in other stuff.  I find that HVD's and Maulers pair very well together;  same range, similar fire rates, and the HVDs also have the EMP effect for when they're hitting armor.

The Enforcer can mount the HVD/Mauler combo too, but its low speed and lesser flux capability mean it's easier for enemies to swarm the unfortunate vessel.
Title: Re: Please Assist With Fleet Loadout - Current and New Ships
Post by: sirrealist on January 30, 2013, 05:04:44 PM
Thanks for all the advice, keep it coming!

As for the Apogee, it looks... daunting. I think I'll avoid it for now and go for 2x Medusa and save money for all the weapon changes I need to make. Are all these weapons available at the Tri and Hegemony stations? Those 2 and the pirate base are the only places to buy weapons right? And there is no guarantee that they will be in stock, right? I'm playing vanilla, btw.
Title: Re: Please Assist With Fleet Loadout - Current and New Ships
Post by: Sonlirain on January 30, 2013, 05:05:05 PM
If you have high tech and a lot of spare OP i suggest using Tactical Lasers on small energy slots and installing advanced gyros and PD AI.
Tactical lasers in this setup are almost flak level good.

If you can replace any and all Chainguns with heavy maulers... thay have a lot more range and pack a nasty punch with one shell making them far better than chainguns at destroying armor.

You could also consider a par of thumpers for that hammerhead as they are suprisingly lethal with fast relaod on and remain very flux effectient.

The enforcer works well with flak guns on the side medium balistic slots and heavy maulers. You could pach either MRM or Reapers on the missile slots i'm not sure if you can but a sabot launcher would work as well. The maulers work OKish against shields since they do a lot of damage at great range making them capable of overloading weaker shield generators on other destroyers or frigates.

Eagle... did i mention i like heavy maulers?
My setup was maulers on the front phase beam on medium energy slots and whatever PD i can afford.
Also as i said before tactical lasers with PD AI are the best PD high tech can get since burst lasers have downtime and bad RoF when exhausted.

In fact on larger ships with many small energy slots tactical lasers + PD AI can actually be cheaper than burst lasers since TL costs far less OP.

As for the Apogee... get it by all means.
This thing is ludicrous as it can solo most pirate fleets on solo out of the box with almost no character skills.
Title: Re: Please Assist With Fleet Loadout - Current and New Ships
Post by: sirrealist on January 30, 2013, 05:37:29 PM
Where can I find Heavy Maulers? The Tri base only has the heavy needler.

Also, I messed up (I think) with building my character, since I didn't really know what I was doing. I put all my points into Combat, and then just recently realized that I have to put points into Leadership/Fleet Logistics, otherwise all my new ships crash into each other. So, I don'[t have any in tech, and I can't really put any in there just yet because I still need more Fleet Points.

Current Char:
Level 15
Combat (7): All at level 5 except Missile Specialization, in which I have no points.
Leadership (3): Fleet Logistics (3)
Technology (0)
Industry (0)

I take it I need to start putting points into Tech so I can get the hull mods. Is there a level cap? Have I put too much into Combat already? Also, I don't mean to get too far off topic, keep the advice on fleet loadout coming!

Thanks guys!
Title: Re: Please Assist With Fleet Loadout - Current and New Ships
Post by: Wyvern on January 30, 2013, 07:27:57 PM
There isn't a cap per se, but somewhere around 20 aptitude points it starts getting very expensive to gain more - the farthest I've gotten a character (without cheating) is around 25 total aptitude points.

Yes, the three stations you named are the only places to buy stuff; usually one of them will have some heavy maulers, but it can be random which one - there are some fixed deliveries of specific weapons, and then the game starts sending random ones to each station.
Title: Re: Please Assist With Fleet Loadout - Current and New Ships
Post by: Histidine on January 30, 2013, 07:55:06 PM
If you've gotten Combat all the way out up to level 7 already, go ahead and get a full ten. Some of the level 10 perks are really, really good.

The skill/perk names escape me right now, but the +25 FP perk in Leadership is also a good deal (the CP that come with the skill certainly don't hurt either).
Title: Re: Please Assist With Fleet Loadout - Current and New Ships
Post by: Andy H.K. on January 31, 2013, 08:15:42 AM
I usually goes with a Tech/leadership heavy build, but my recent run with a combat heavy build turn out to be surprisingly effective and fun.

I would recommend maxing out "ordnance expert" and "helmsmenship" with their +10 perks. The perk from "ordnance expert" is like an extra +OP skill. The perk from "helmsmenship" is a game-changer as it give a great boost to your mobility and allows you to rush in with shield up.

I always pick up the two skills that improve travel speed. Having good travel speed basically allows you to pick your fight.

Picking which weapons to use on your ship depends a lot on what you're usually fighting against and the role you want the ship to take. Say Hammerhead for example, The setup with twin assault chaingun is good at chewing out frigates, however once you move on to fight against larger ships heavy mauler and hypervelocity driver would be a better choice.
Title: Re: Please Assist With Fleet Loadout - Current and New Ships
Post by: sirrealist on February 04, 2013, 01:50:44 PM
Okay, so I've refitted my shits and got an Apogee and got that all configured. Now I breeze through the largest of pirate fleets. Now it's time to turn half damage off, keep tearing up pirate fleets, and then save up to take on the Tri and Hegemony fleets!  8)
Title: Re: Please Assist With Fleet Loadout - Current and New Ships
Post by: Dri on February 05, 2013, 04:57:27 PM
Okay, so I've refitted my shits

Here is my low-tech super heavy mega-beast ballistic super armor fleet of ships. ;D The screenies below will show hull mods and weapon loadouts which is basically max vents, armor/hull boosting hull mods, and high-end ballistic weapons such as needlers, "dual" versions of weapons like the dual flak, heavy maulers, etc...

EDIT: Right click pic and open in a new tab if you don't run a high resolution or else it'll be badly cut-off. -_-

At 38000 hull, 2275 armor and more cannons than you can believe I give you the ISS God Hand:

Shield busting and long range support is the name of the game for Absolute, a dominator-class heavy cruiser.

She does it all: shield breaking with the hyper drivers, armor busting with the h mauler and annihilator rockets, and PD with twin dual flaks - the ISS Siege!

Small but vicious, this lasher-class frigate can take down shields with the needler and then shred armor with dual assault guns and harpoons! Twin dual machine guns swat missiles.

All of this is legit but does take a higher level character as you need to max the 3 OP granting skills but as soon as I got my first enforcer-class the game became easy mode. I currently have 2 enforcers, 2 lashers, 1 dominator and 1 onslaught and I can easily take out every fleet and only have issues with Hege Defense Fleets. Only ships I've lost after hours of play are the lashers that get overly aggressive and get too near to capitol ships found mainly in the TriTach fleets. My fleet does lack a way to rapidly acquire the capture points but I honestly don't even need them with my smaller fleet.