Fleet Specialization by Alexim (DMTNT - Epsilon)
Alright! You have reached lvl 30 and you have couple of planets with a set of Prings on them, most of your technologies are in the low 20's. Life seems to be going well until you face this dilemma: "Which ship types and technologies should I concentrate on, after all my resources are limited and I want to make the best use of them?". And if you are asking yourself this question you came to the realization that there are numerous variations of fleet and technology, each of which gives your empire a unique set of benefits and drawbacks. I'll try to share my knowledge regarding the most commonly used styles, their advantages and disadvantages and what steps do you have to take to get a particular style.
Main units used: Fighters and Fleet Carries (simple Carriers die faster and are more expensive per hangar space)
Technologies to concentrate on: Laser, Armor, Warp
Basic idea behind this concept: When a low level ship is trying to attack something with high shields only 1% of the damage gets through, but if you have a lot of tiny ships 1% damage adds up to a force that can destroy everything in its path. According to the Small Fleet Doctrine, smaller ships are more efficient than larger ships in terms of power/armor per credit. And the most efficient of all ships is the fighter.
- A very large amount of fighters is needed for the fleet to be effective! For example about 250,000 are able to take down one set of Prings that means that fighter fleets should be in the range of 1-2mil fighters in order to be functional.
- Fighters cannot move by themselves, that means that a very large number of fleet carriers are needed to transport all the fighters. 10 million credit fighter mass (2 mill fighters) will require about 10-11 mill credits in Fleet Carriers to move around.
- When a fighter fleet is stationed away from your base it is susceptible to Heavy Cruiser suicide attacks. Heavy cruisers will be able to destroy more FC than fighters and do so at good ratios, thus your fleet carrying capacity will drop and essentially your fleet will bleed fighters. If you leave those fighters to "pick them up later", most often than not you will find that enemy sent another batch of HC and shield raped your fighters at a profit.
- When attacking someones base with fighter fleet you will notice that you have to move FC and fighter into position and then move FC away, it works fine if the enemy is not online, however if he is the he can inflict a lot of damage to your FC.
- Fighters are the most efficient ships in the game. That means that when using a fighter fleet you can take out base defenses with minimal possible losses and destroy all other ships with very profitable ratios.
- Since fighters are so efficient in some cases you can ignore low levels of command centers on enemies base if there are no enemy fighters present.
- When a fighter fleet is stationed on a base with high command centers and at least 4 sets of Prings (asteroids work great for this purpose) it is very difficult for an enemy to attack that fleet. Any damage that comes from HC attacks get distributed well by the Prings, fighters, FC and Pshields, besides few players have enough HC to kill a fighter fleet (about 40-75,000 is needed). And command centers make sure that fighters really put a dent in enemy HC fleet. Anything above HC is very inefficient and will not be able to remove the fighter fleet with out suffering significant losses. The only way to remove a fighter fleet from the owner's base is with another fighter fleet (aka huge fighter drop), but few players carry enough fighters to even attempt this and ratios from such hits are not great (plus the rebuild time from such hits is massive)
- FC in the fighter fleet is a one time investment, once you have enough carries and are careful with them the only thing for you to rebuild after hits are fighters.
- Very low level of shipyards are needed to build and maintain a fighter fleet, fighters can be built pretty much straight away while Fleet Carriers need only lvl 16 shipyards.
- As a bonus, Corvettes of a Fighter Fleet owner also get beefed up since they use Laser technology just as fighters, this makes them very effective at attacking enemy recyclers.
Steps to take to get a fighter fleet: The most important in building a fighter fleet is to achieve a "critical mass" and try to stay above it at all times. The critical mass of fighter fleet is determined by the age of the server and your technology. Basically speaking a small fighter fleet of 300k fighters is useless and has to be supplemented by cruisers, however when you get to 800K range you find that you can take out larger targets by fighters alone to fuel your fighter building obsession.
Main units used: Frigates, Fighters
Technologies to concentrate on: Laser, Missiles, Armor, Stellar Drive
Basic Idea behind this concept: Frigates are extremely fast ships able to carry fighters as well as attack cruisers and Heavy cruisers at profitable ratios. Given the right technology they are also able to break Planetary Rings with rather good ratios. Ability to use this fleet for many purposes and its speed makes it valuable to some players.
- Missile technology is utilized by bombers, missile turrets and frigates. Since Missile Turrets are pretty much useless later in the game and bombers are not widely used (they die easily and not that much better than fighters). Researching Missile technology really limits its application to frigate fleets.
- Frigate fleets are extremely vulnerable to fighter fleets and Levi fleets. On one side Frigates are much less efficient then fighters on the other they are not powerful enough to get through a Levi shield. As such these fleets are rarely safe when placed on owners base, no matter how many command centers and P rings it has. A fighter drop will destroy that fleet with very good ratios.
- As result of # 2 in order to use the frigate fleet owner must be very active.
- Frigate fleets need only shipyards of level 8 to function.
- Frigates are easy to build and get a large number of them quickly
- Frigate Fleets are very fast compared to slower warp ships
- Frigate fleets get good ratios from attacking Cruisers/Heavy Cruisers and work well to break P rings
Heavy Cruiser SpecEdit
- Plasma 14 - 22
- Armor 25
- Warpdrive 12 - 16
- Cannot dent Deathstar shields (this is why you would build Battleships, in a ratio of 1 Battleship to 10 Heavy Cruisers)
- Can easily be pounded by Heavy Bombers, Corvettes, Destroyers and Cruisers when in large numbers
- Shield rape fighter stacks for great profit
- Most effecient at destroying fleets above Cruisers
- 3 Heavy Cruisers, 50 Destroyers, and max hangar of fighters/bombers takes down a dreadnought
- The most efficient fleet spec
- Can use Carriers, or Fleet Carriers to bring in fighters/bombers to help improve ratios
Main units used: Levi's
Technologies to concentrate on: Armor, Shielding, Photon
Basic idea behind this concept: Levies are huge ships that have very high shield capacity, thus enabling them to shield rape smaller defenses and ships up to cruisers.
- Can rarely be used on a base with Prings, since loss of one Levi equates to about 100k loss of credits
- Owner must have an ample amount of credits on hand for repair
- They are very slow
- Heavy cruisers are very good at taking them out
- They need a very high level of shipyards 24 as well as 5 orbital shipyards.
- They take very long to build and cost a lot
- When Levi shield rapes a fleet that is composed of nothing higher than a cruiser it gets very profitable ratios
- Provided ample credits for repairs one Levi can shield rape huge enemy fleets.
- Intimidation factor of seeing 30 Levies can bring your enemy to a state of panic
- Large amount of highly specialized fleet is required to destroy a Levi stack (Levi stack =several Levis in a group).