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Author Topic: What's Your Ideal Salvage Fleet?  (Read 6088 times)

Rune Wolf

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Re: What's Your Ideal Salvage Fleet?
« Reply #15 on: November 18, 2019, 12:35:05 AM »

Maybe it's geography?

...today I had a mission to the NW region of the map I hadn't been before, and, there was a passage of smooth hyperspace the whole way, used roughly half the supplies and fuel I brought. I am not used to that.

(To understand travel the map seed I've got, to reach 3 of the 4 corners, there is not a "pocket" of deep hyperspace, but an "expanse". As in, the whole screen is deep hyperspace. I'm starting to wonder how normal/not normal this is. The NE corner is really thick, to the point I think it's affecting the part of the game simulating NPC fleets and factions - to the extent this game is simulating such things? Nobody, and I mean nobody, not Pirates, Luddites, or other Salvage fleets, not missions for bounties or suspected base locations, ever go out there. You are alone.)

Fuel might be mathematical, but supply isn't. "100 days" worth of supplies are often gone in 20 days of deep hyperspace travel.


@SapphireSage - Increased Maintenence and Erratic Fuel Injector are deal-breaker D-mods for me. I've given every ship Efficiency Overhaul.
I read that thread. I've taken navigation 2 and putting points in logistics now.

@Lucky33 - Everything you're saying is spot on. No, I wasn't thinking hard numbers about fuel or supply until it became a problem.

I was obsessed with burn speed when I started. Then I figured 9 was almost as good as 10, and 8 was almost as good as 9, right? I have a known logical fallacy from other games I've played, of sacrificing every other consideration for high speed, and running into trouble later for it. People are talking about high speeds here, so I'm not the only one going for max speed.

@ Plantissue - What's actually going on is I wait until there's, 3, 4, or more exploration missions clustered in one region of the map and then take them all. Some of them are survey, and since I'm already geared for it, on the return trip, I poke into systems and look for planets that might generate Grade IV or V data. These are also the ones that tend to have ruins or derelict stations.

I've been thinking about this. Even Grade-I data is 10,000c. Say it costs 50 supplies to survey it, kind of an average number. Supplies average 100c. Turning 5,000c supplies into 10,000c data is double your investment. Of course, fuel and travel time must be factored in, but still, it's worth it if the star's already along your route and the planet's next to the jump point.

I'm not sure if - at what point - a survey fleet could make a profit doing this. It seems like everything is - theoretically - profitable, but in-practice, expenses, "black swans" like pirate attacks, and those tariffs - make nothing profitable... not without a mission.

Yes, I've been wondering at what point I go for combat. It's hit or miss. Some pirate fleets run from me now. I've tried attacking them, but one was really good at using E-burns to dodge, another just ran straight to pirate base with an armada of 12 capital ships for protection.

Yes, upgrading to larger, destroyers and cruisers was the plan. Maybe a carrier-based fleet, using the small ships I already have as escorts.
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Rune Wolf

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Re: What's Your Ideal Salvage Fleet?
« Reply #16 on: November 18, 2019, 01:57:04 AM »

I just came to the horrifying realization that burn rate is supplies.
Time is money.
Maintenence is supplies per ship per day.
More burn rate is less days spent getting to your destination.

Buying expensive ships that are slow, you pay for them twice!
I am currently buying 1000 supplies per "expedition". That's a flight to some mission objective in the corner of the map and back.
If I got rid of all burn rate 8 ships, going to burn rate 10, that's a 25% increase, a 25% decrease in travel time, 25% less supplies used.
25% of 1000 is...
This saves 250 supplies.

If just sell the Heron Carrier, or install Augmented Drive Field, it would save more supply use as Efficiency Overhauling every ship.
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Lucky33

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Re: What's Your Ideal Salvage Fleet?
« Reply #17 on: November 18, 2019, 02:54:19 AM »

And dont forget that terrain slows your fleet based mostly on the number of ships in it. This is why you dont want all those "dozen of Drums + dozen of Shepherds + dozen of Wolfs" solutions.
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isyourmojofly

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Re: What's Your Ideal Salvage Fleet?
« Reply #18 on: November 18, 2019, 03:09:01 AM »

My idea of "salvaging" is to prey on trade convoys in the core worlds. Get a bunch of bonuses to salvaging with skills and ships (such as a rig and a shepherd or two) and you can happily pull all the supplies and fuel you need from a few convoys.

Don't forget to fit expanded cargo holds and fuel storage on all your logistics ships. Efficiency overhaul is also good, and solar shielding cuts down on repair costs from warp storms. Getting the +1 burn (+2 sustained) is also a really good move.
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bobucles

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Re: What's Your Ideal Salvage Fleet?
« Reply #19 on: November 18, 2019, 04:35:01 AM »

Quote
I just came to the horrifying realization that burn rate is supplies.
Time is money.
Maintenence is supplies per ship per day.
More burn rate is less days spent getting to your destination.
There are three major drains on supplies.
The monthly upkeep is by far the cheapest. It's only a hazard in the extreme early game, when cargo is tight and every penny is precious.
Space hazards are a moderate expense. Hyperspace storms grow in danger with your fleet size, but can be mitigated by using small size ships. Solar hazards will eat your supplies for breakfast.
Combat is by far the biggest overall drain. Ships cost 1 month of supplies to enter battle, and cost even more supplies to repair if you over extend their PPT and take damage. D-mods reduce the cost of entering battle.

Going faster will help reduce your costs, but it mostly affects your smallest expense- monthly upkeep. The other expenses have a pile of player talents to make cheaper.

Plantissue

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Re: What's Your Ideal Salvage Fleet?
« Reply #20 on: November 18, 2019, 07:34:41 AM »

I don't know what is going on in your game, but in my game the grade-1 survey data is 1000c. So 10 supplies breaks even. If grade-1 is 10 000c I have no idea why surveying isn't profitable for you. Are you flying into the corona of stars?

Salvaging is not a useful word as it means many different things to different people. Your title is very misleading which is why you are getting some replies with no real relevance to your post. In the forums it seems to be used for recovering derelict ships, recovering disabled ships after battle, taking items from after battle, exploring probes/motherships/abandoned stations, exploring planetary ruins and scavening a debris field. Likewise with survey, people here use it to mean too many different things.

Salvaging as in selling metals is hardly profitable. I reckon you need to return to the core worlds with full cargo to break even or with small profit. So if you are returning without full cargo, you probably isn't making much money. Of course, if you happen to have cargo filled with volatiles or transplutonics, that would be profitable. If you aren't returning without filling up your cargo, you aren't being efficient and you may just have too many cargo ships to optimise profitability.

In any case the profitability of surveying is "spikey". Most profit should be from items that don't take up much cargo space, though I suppose if one time you couldn't carry 1000 volatiles, people overreact from their lack of cargo space. You can go and explore several systems and make a net loss, or the first time, you can find a pristine nanoforge or a paragon blueprint or an alpha AI core which will make you enough money for several further explorations, though those are rare enough that you might just prefer to keep hold of it yourself instead for later use as those items are worth more than several capital ships later in the game afterall.

Since the greater proportion of profit from Salvage/Survey by which I take to mean exploration is from 1 cargo high value items, you are probably just maximising cargo space way too much. Lets say 20% of profit from exploration is from salvage and 80% is from surveying, so it makes no sense to have such massive amounts of ships for cargo. You just don't need it, except for supplies. As I said before, you actually got a combat focused fleet, so it's not suprising that you can't explore that well. You can probably do 80k bounties. Why do you need a fleet like that to face derelict ships? You simply don't need that 28 fuel/LY fleet to do survey missions and survey planets.

Lets say you want to do a poor 60k survey mission at a massive 40 LY range. Imagine a block of ships of combat, supply and fuel, say a wolf, a shepherd and a dram. Lets say you went at Sustained burn and went through a screen of hyperspace storm that drained a month's worth of supplies and took 3 months getting there, exploring the system looking for that probe, and getting back and got blown off course a bit so you travelled 100 LY in total. One block of ships is 10 supplies a month and 3 Fuel per LY. So you use up per block of ships, 40 supplies and 200 fuel. Quick calculation gives about 10k cost. So a fleet of 6 wolfs, 6 shepherds and 6 drams would break assuming you didn't explore anything else. That's 60 supply/month fleet and 18 Fuel/LY fleet for mission and back again.

I can't see why your 114 supply a month and 28 Fuel/LY fleet can't do 3 exploration missions clustered in the same area and not make a profit, especially if you are doing other surveying and salvaging.
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BulbasaurWizard

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Re: What's Your Ideal Salvage Fleet?
« Reply #21 on: November 18, 2019, 08:52:01 AM »

I mostly like playing salvage/exploration runs.  Industry skills are key, as well as the one that reduces your fuel consumption.  Once you are moderately combat capable to survive some of the exploration fleets, you have to learn to balance how many ships you need to deploy to win without full deploying every time which burns unnecessary supplies.  Then it is all about finding balance in terms of what are you running out of? Fuel? Cargo Space?  Add ships to balance that, but certain ships are most efficient at it.  Colossus is a great cargo ship.  Any combat freighter is not as efficient.  Make sure you salvage everything at least twice.  As people have already stated Shepards, Salvage Rigs, and anything that helps with your survey costs is great. I use no more than 4 salvage ships. I usually decide it is time to head home from an exploration expedition when my cargo has filled up with non-metal goods.

One thing that can be useful, I've learned, is if you can store the goods you find on your runs, you can sell them more effectively on the procurement contracts or at systems that are "in need."  Obviously if you are desperate for cash, this isn't always an option, and sometimes you end up with like 20k metal, and no desire to fill 40k reward contracts.

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Mikhail Mengsk

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Re: What's Your Ideal Salvage Fleet?
« Reply #22 on: November 19, 2019, 03:51:06 AM »

I've found that Drone Tenders beat out actual Salvage ships in every regard, and they're cheaper, too.  They've both got salvage gantries, sure, but the DT can actually hold a little bit of fuel & cargo and can be fit with cargo expansions as well.

Me too. They are called Shepherd IIRC. Also Apogee a cutie, tanks like there's no tomorrow, good cargo space and has two built-in logistic hullmods.

Personally, I try to have a fleet that can deal with every situation and make profit out of everything. If I have both a combat-capable fleet and high salvage and cargo capability I can dive into any fight and recover enough resources (supplies,fuel,metal,machinery,blueprints,weapons,hulls) to mitigate the expenses. Said fight might open the way to recover more resources in the system, or to survey it for farming Survey Data or exploring precious ruins. Being fast is very important: not only you minimize travel time (and thus supply costs, albeit it's a minor expense), but you can also evade fights you can't win.

Of course a SPECIALIZED fleet can do something better, until it faces something it can't deal with. A maximized exploration fleet could be trapped by an enemy fleet and shred to bits, a full combat fleet could find precious cargo it can't bring back home or ran your supplies/fuel into the ground, etc.

PERSONALLY, I like to start with low profile high profit trade missions. Doing the Askonia-Mercy route enough times to build a proper fleet is my first move, usually. My starting skill/ship choices are close to BulbasaurWizard's.
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Snowscoran

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Re: What's Your Ideal Salvage Fleet?
« Reply #23 on: December 10, 2019, 01:40:06 PM »

There's several ideal salvage fleet concepts, depending on what you want to do. But generally speaking you want four things:

- A fair bit of surveying equipment
- Good sensors (remember that only your best five ships count)
- Enough fuel to get you there and back again
- A lot of cargo capacity
- Finally, enough combat capabilities to fight anything that can catch you, or sufficient ship speed to run away.

Early on you may want a high-speed, burn 10 fleet that can easily disengage from any battle it finds itself in. Some good ships here are:

Shepherd: A staple hull for the purpose, you'll want at least four or five in any serious surveying fleet. Put unstable injector on it if you're not interested in fighting. If you are interested in fighting, they can do a surprisingly decent support job with a salamander launcher and their built-in drone wing, but expect to lose them as their defenses are negligible.

Tempest: An excellent frigate that packs a serious punch. With good piloting, you can take down a LOT of pirates or automated defense drones in a single player-controlled Tempest. A handful of these can take on medium-sized fleets, but be aware that the AI will get itself blown up from time to time. Also, the Tempest remains useful in a support role even in bigger fleets, especially with a safety-overriden loadout to hunt fleeing enemies in pursuit battles.

Omen: A very good support frigate with built-in high-res sensors. Not very useful in combat on its own, though.

Dram: The only sensible way to get enough fuel capacity for deep-space expeditions at this burn level. Very fast with safety overrides and unstable injector, will never be caught in pursuit.

Your main problem with the smallest crafts is that there are no good cargo hauler options. You'll probably have to rely on the cargo hold of your Shepherd fleet to carry whatever valuables you scrounge up.

If you have the navigation skills to make burn 9 equivalent to burn 10, a lot of new options emerge. Many of these have more trouble running away from frigate-sized enemies, though, so you might need to screen them in a disengagement battle or otherwise be ready to fight the enemy at least to a clean disengage.

Buffalo: This is a pretty decent hauler, particularly the Hegemony Auxiliary variant that gets militarized by default, which allows it an extra logistics hullmod. Use these with expanded cargo holds + surveying equipment or high-res sensors as needed.

Phaeton: A slightly more efficient Dram.

Colossus: A slightly awkward fit at burn 9. You'll need to slap on an augmented drive field, which means it can't do serious sensor work or fit expanded cargo hold without penalties. You could use them for hosting surveying equipment, and they get good cargo capacity even without hullmods.

Atlas or Prometheus: If you can get hold of one, consider taking the opportunity. Both can be militarized and given augmented drive field to make them burn 9. They're very efficient in terms of fleet slots as well as cargo or fuel capacity respectively, and on top of that you get capital-grade sensors. Main downside is that neither of these are quick enough to flee in a pursuit battle, so you need to be able to avoid unwanted fights. Also, only bigger fleets should need the fuel capacity of a Prometheus.

Salvage Rig: The 25% salvage bonus stacks fully with whatever bonus you have from your Shepherds. Bringing one of these along is typically worthwhile.

Drover: These light carriers add a lot of fighter punch for their cost, and there's enough OP that you can run two logistics hullmods if you want to. These are great ships all around. Go wild with acquisitions.

Falcon: A very nice cruiser-sized combat ship to support your Drovers. Very fast and low-maintenance for a cruiser. Use them as pure combat vessels, or put on some logistics hullmods for a hybrid- they make excellent sensor/survey monkeys on the side.

If you go down to burn 8, you open up a lot of good combat cruisers, and notably the Apogee, which doubles as an excellent sensor/survey ship. At this stage you probably want to plan your expeditions around taking out bounty targets. Admittedly this is also possible with a burn 9 fleet if you include enough combat ships (eg Drovers and Falcons).

Final pro tip: If you have enough combat ships in your fleet to bully away smaller groups of pirates and luddites, you can use their deep space stations as staging points for your expeditions instead of destroying them for the bounty. Just approach with transponder off. This can make the back and forth trips to resupply significantly shorter.
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