Nullsec Revamp Part III: Weapons of War

March 26, 2013

Mord Fiddle and Kirith Kodachi are having a discussion about what should be done about supercaps. I think they both have good points, and they've also provoked some thoughts of my own on the matter.

Super Predators

I agree that there's a need for some kind of dedicated subcap ship that can act as a counter to supercaps; my own inclination would be a sort of stealth bomber writ large, possibly based on the Attack (formerly Tier 3) Battlecruisers, and armed with capital-class guns; ideally their DPS would be greater than a comparably-fit unsieged dread of the same race, but definitely no greater than half that of that same dread when in seige. In addition to serving as anti-(super)capital DPS in large battles, they might also provide some extra structure-bashing oomph to deep-penetration Black Ops raids.

Power Projection

That brings us to our next topic: supercapital jump drives, and Titan jump bridges in particular. In his post, Kirith Kodachi advocates a nerf to supercap jump range and for bridging to be removed from Titans entirely. Personally, I'm fine both with the current jump ranges and with Titans being able to bridge other ships. I do think that more ships should be able to create bridges, and that bridging should involve the ship in question arriving at the bridged-to location, not sitting safe in a POS some lightyears away. From that commonality, I have a few varying thoughts.

One thought is that, after jumping to a standard cyno, a bridging ship might light some kind of super-cyno that appears as a destination on allied jump bridge infrastructure within the bridging ship's jump range – the idea being to sharply limit short-term offensive power projection and encourage WWII Pacific Theatre-style island-hopping campaigns. Another thought is that a bridging ship might jump to a cyno and leave a temporary wormhole (of sorts) behind it, that other ships can travel through – or might open a wormhole to the cyno for those other ships, then jump itself when the cycle of the bridging module ends.

On the whole I personally prefer the mental image of a Titan or other bridging ship being the first to arrive, opening the assault by its appearance (and also exposing itself to a bit more risk, if its fleet isn't quite on the ball); it seems the sort of thing that would look good in a trailer, and promoting more excitement and more cinematic action is always a plus in my book.

And finally, speaking of other bridging ships, I think a new class of Tech 2 battleships based on the Abaddon (Khanid torp-boat, perhaps?), Rokh, Hyperion, and Maelstrom would be very welcome in make bridging tactics available to groups that don't have supercaps, and with less restrictions on the accompanying vessels than with a Black Ops.

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