Thursday 1 March 2012

The great pilgrimage to lowsec..

So anyone that's seen my posts on battleclinic regard the pilgrim will know 2 things.

I love the pilgrim, and I hate the pilgrim.

I love it, cloaky, neuting, ewar, drone damage, lots of drones, bonused neut's and nos's whats not to like, how great a ship is this for hunting people solo in lowsec!

Except that its not... so I hate it.
Its Amarr so it's never going to be fast, and unlike the curse it only has a bonus to neuting amount, not to the range of the neuts. With maximum skills you have 5seconds before you can target and start to apply neuts to your victim. With medium neuts you're looking at 12km neut range. Unless you spring for the shiny faction ones at 14km.

The issue with AB only is you have a overheated speed of 500-600ms, this is very slow by pvp standards. You can only tackle at 12km with the neuts. Neuts take 1-2 cycles to have any effect depending on target.


Now many people suggest you should fit just an Afterburner, which whilst that is very good for signature tanking in combination with the tracking disrupting it causes problems with gaining inital tackle. With the recon decloaking delay you have 5seconds + your standard sensor resolution time to lock anyone. This means against a MWD frigate, you have 8.8 seconds before you can lock them. This is longer than the warp allign time on most frigates, and certainly longer than the time it takes for a frigate pilot to burn more than 12km away from a ship only capable of doing 600ms.

So lets look at solo target choice for a while.

Frigates: T1/T2/Faction
Most frigates will run like hell when they see a recon landing in belt with them, and whilst some of the braver pilots will happily tackle a solo rapier, arazu, as if you can get under the guns your good for a while. (I've come close personally to killing both a Rapier and a lachses solo in a rifter...)
A Curse or a Pilgrim is just bad news for a frigate neuts and bonused drones, lots of drones, sod  that I'm a running...
5seconds is too long, they are significantly faster than you, and only have to be outside of 12km from the Pilgrim to avoid the deadly neuts. So alligned or burning, you're unlikely to catch a frigate. The ones you do, well they're stupid and dead.
Obvious things to avoid, anything that will orbit outside of tackle/neut range and call in backup.

Cruisers: T1/T2
These will run if they get the chance too, tending to be scram range fighters, they will be burning out of range as soon as you decloak, easier to catch than frigates, relatively easy kills, assuming you can catch them. Obviously avoid anything that fights at range like Vagabonds, other drone boats are viable targets you have a good buffer and with the neuts you should be able to keep their resist mods off and worst case leave if its going badly.


Now this is a tough choice, a battlecruiser has a lot of DPS, and whilst these are a real choice target they are probably the most deadly thing to you.
You need to avoid anything that can kite you, hurricanes/drakes can be deadly to a curse, able to sit out at 20km and hit you hard if they manage to get outside of that 12km envelope. They are relatively fast able to match you in speed, and 5 seconds is a long time for them to get outside the neuts.
These are what I most want to kill, and also what i'm most likely to die to. The other thing about battlecruisers, is how many solo battlecruiser pilots's do you actually see in lowsec... you really want to be taking on more than one at a time?

You are slow in a curse, 300ms cloaked... so you need to be on top of them before cloaking, now this is the time when I believe you really need that microwarp drive, ramming them is the best way to stop them from alligning to warp out, and to keep up with them to prevent them burning outside of 12km. Hoping to catch a few mission runners and plexing battleships, as we don't get too many battleship ratters in lowsec.

So without a MWD you basically have very little chance of actually catching anyone who isn't afk at the helm when you decloak. You will of course get some kills with only an afterburner, as EvE is full of people that fail to react when something decloaks next to them...

Having a few on grid warpin's to belts, and combat probing alt will certainly increase your chances of getting the right warpin on your target. Most people don't sit for long at zero on a belt, either moving closer to the rats to shoot them, or alligning out to the next belt. So you might have to cover a few kilometers before tackling them.

For this reason you really need the MWD, but AB is sooo good once you've caught them.

The fit that I've come up with is this:
[Pilgrim, Oh Hai]
Damage Control II
800mm Reinforced Rolled Tungsten Plates I 
Energized Adaptive Nano Membrane II 
Energized Adaptive Nano Membrane II 
Energized Thermic Membrane II 

Experimental 10MN MicroWarpdrive 
10MN Afterburner II 
Medium Capacitor Booster II, Navy Cap Booster 400 
Tracking Disruptor II, Tracking Speed Disruption 
Warp Scrambler II 

Medium Energy Neutralizer II 
Medium Energy Neutralizer II 
Medium Energy Neutralizer II 
Covert Ops Cloaking Device II 

Medium Trimark Armor Pump I 
Medium Trimark Armor Pump I 

Valkyrie II x5 
Hammerhead II x5 
Hornet EC-300 x5 
Warrior II x5 

With a MWD to help with the intial tackle, and then an afterburner to make the most of the relatively small cruiser sized signature, this gives me an overheated burst speed of about 1600ms which should let me keep in range to tackle things. The lack of web is a pain, depending on how it goes I might drop the tracking disruptor in favour of one. I did look at active tanks, but went with the buffer in the end for ease of management, might swap out that thermal resist for an active hardner thinking about it.

So there we have it, this month I will be mainly flying solo pilgrim.

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