Stealth Bomber

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Stealth bombers are powerful, expensive (for their size) and extremely fragile weapons. Since they are T2 frigates, they are often one of the earliest T2 ships that new pilots can fly. This page discusses the available bombers and suggests possible fits for use in Eve University fleets.

Contents

Which Bomber?

The Amarr Purifier

Each race has one stealth bomber.

The Purifier and the Hound are arguably better at using bombs (they have a 3L-3M-5H slot layout), while the Manticore and the Nemesis are perhaps better torpedo platforms (with a 2L-4M-5H slot layout). You might think that the bombers with three lows would be better torpedo bombers because they could fit three Ballistic Control Systems, but you'll be hard pressed to find an effective fit with 120 CPU to spare for BCS IIs. Additionally, the Manticore and Nemesis can fit one more utility/EWar/etc module in their mids -- the ability to, for example, sensor damp the enemy may allow them to stay on the field for longer.

Other than the slot layout and preferred damage type there are few major differences between the bombers. The Nemesis is bonused for thermal damage, which is the least often resisted damage type in pvp. The Purifier is has a significantly larger cargo bay than the others, which allows it to carry 3 bombs. The Manticore has the highest CPU, making for easier fitting, and the Hound is the most agile.

UniBombers

The UniBombers are a group of unistas who share a collective interest in learning more about flying stealth bombers. UniBombers go on regular stealth bomber roams around low/nullsec, and occasionally venture into high sec to chase after wartargets.

Stealth Bomber Fitting

The Caldari Manticore

All stealth bombers get a 15% bonus to racial (Amarr/EM, Gallente/Thermal, Caldari/Kinetic, Minmatar/Explosive) torpedo, as well as 5% bonus to racial bomb damage per level of Covert-Ops trained. In addition, they get a flat 100% bonus to torpedo velocity, and a 50% bonus to explosion velocity and torpedo flight time. Lastly they receive a flat role bonus of a -99.65% reduction in Torpedo Launcher powergrid needs, -50% reduction in Cloak CPU Use, and -100% targeting delay after decloaking. These last three skills are largely to ensure the ship can equip battleship size missile launchers, and that the covert-ops cloak is used exclusively on covert-ops ships.

In fitting a bomber it is ideal to maximize potential damage. This is done largely with the use of target painters, and ballistic control systems. These greatly increase the DPS torpedoes do to non-battleship size targets. Newer players will have trouble fitting three launchers as well as a bomb launcher without perfect fitting skills. The purifier in particular is difficult to fit.

A standard general fitting is as follows:

Highs:
3 Prototype 'Arbalest' Torpedo Launcher
1 Covert Ops Cloaking Device

1 Bomb Launcher **
Mids:
1 Target Painter
1 Propulsion Module
1 Remote Sensor Dampener

Lows:
2 Ballistic Control Systems
1 Low module of your choice.

** The Bomb Launcher is largely very difficult to fit in addition to the three 'Arbalest' launchers. It is often found that bombers have to alter the standard fit to include 1 bomb launcher and less torpedo damage modules, or they fit for only torpedo damage.

The choice of what meta level module to fit for the mid and low slots is largely user choice, however it is recommended that you fit the highest (up to meta 5/Tech II) module that you can. If CPU usage is a problem with the Arbalest launchers, the meta 1 variants (Malkuth) offer less performance but less CPU usage. Alternatively, if the DPS difference is smaller, altering the rigs used on the bomber may allow for better fits.

The sensor dampner is used to increase the bomber's lifespan. Dampners are used to reduce enemy ships targetting range and scan resolution. It is recommended that all ships carry both scripts in their hull so switching can be done on the fly. However in multiple bomber gangs it is usually advised to run the targeting range script.

All bombers should be carrying Faction torpedoes, these are usually the Caldari Navy variants.

Alternative Low-Modules

The remaining low slot should be filled with a module of the player's choice, however it should still play to the strengths of the ship. This means that the final low should be a nano-fiber internal structure, or perhaps an overdrive injector system. Alternatively to agility mods, a Damage Control or Adaptive Nano Plating if possible to fit can work as well.

Modules that are Not Recommended

Often it is suggested that fittings equip sensor boosters, or tracking disruptors. While these can be beneficial, they are also very situational. Tracking disruptors are flat out useless against enemy missile ships (for now). Thus limiting the types of engagements one can be useful in. Sensor boosters, while good in locking quickly, is somewhat counter-productive to the whole idea behind bombers. Targeting anything that can warp off quickly, or has a small signature radius means torpedo damage is going to be negligible. Meanwhile bombs require no locking to fire, and are thus preferred for engaging smaller targets.

Additionally, it is sometimes suggested bombers fit shield extenders to increase their survivability. This is not recommended as shield modules generally increase signature radius, and thus make the bomber easier to lock and easier to hit. This runs counter to the idea and tactics employed with the bomber. The argument for survivability also is largely irrelevant. The bomber is a glass cannon, trying to increase survivability plays to the ships weaknesses instead of it's strengths. Bombers are ideally fit for speed and as much damage-per-second as possible. In this same fashion, Inertia Stabilizers also increase signature radius and should not be used.

Rigs

The choice of rigs used on the bomber is largely player preference. The most often used, the Warhead Calefaction Catalyst boosts torpedo damage, however other modules increase missile range (useful for staying outside targeting range {thanks to your sensor damps}) and velocity, or firing rate and thus DPS. Alternatively, there are rigs to decrease explosion radius (increased damage versus smaller sized ships) and explosion velocity (increased damage to faster moving ships). Most of the different missile launcher rigs are useful in someway on the stealth bomber. It largely depends on individual flying preferences and styles. The downside to these rigs is that they also increase the CPU usage of each launcher, making fitting even more difficult.

Astronautic rigs are also widely used, these are useful in increasing ship agility and speed. These are useful in situations in which the bomber needs to align quickly and warp off grid. These situations are frequent with bombers and thus having a short align time is a must. The downside of these rigs is that they reduce armor amount, and thus make the bomber that much more fragile. Suggested astronautic rigs are: Low Friction Nozzle Joints and Poly-Carbon Engine Housing.

Since the introduction of the Processor Overclocking Unit rigs with the Inferno expansion these are useful on stealth bombers as well. Processor Overclocking Unit rigs increase the CPU output of your ship at the cost of a slower regeneration rate of the shields. Stealth bomber fits still remain tight but with these rigs it is possible to mount tech 2 Torpedo launchers alongside the other standard modules including the Bomb Launcher.

The Bomber uses small sized rigs.

Racial Bomber Differences

The Minmatar Hound

Hound

The Hound is the Minmatar Stealth Bomber. It gets a bonus to explosive damage and uses Nova torpedoes. With the exception of the torpedo type, the fit is the same as the Purifier, though pilots may find it a touch easier to squeeze everything on due to a slight difference in CPU. It features a 5-3-3 layout, composing of three mid slots, and three low slots. It also has the fastest align time and highest scan resolution out of all of the bombers.

Manticore

The Manticore is the Caldari Stealth Bomber. It has the advantages of having ample CPU space and a slightly more ideal slot layout (5-4-2). It gets a bonus to kinetic damage, and uses Scourge torpedoes.

Nemesis

The Nemesis is the Gallente Stealth Bomber. It shares the Manticore's slot layout. It has a bit less CPU, so it can't quite fit the same range of modules in its midslots. Pilots who wish to fit Tech 2 versions of the mid slot modules will find it difficult to fit as well. The Nemesis gets a bonus to thermal damage and uses Inferno torpedoes.

Purifier

The Purifier is the Amarr Stealth Bomber. It shares the same slot layout as the Hound (5-3-3). It has the least CPU of any of the Stealth Bombers, which makes fitting tight and not quite as varied as the other races. It gets a bonus to EM damage and uses Mjolnir torpedoes. Its major distinguishing feature is a considerably larger cargo bay, allowing it to carry an extra bomb in cargo.

Recommended, Suggested, & Required Skills

The Gallente Nemesis

Required Skills

All bombers have the following skill requirements to operate:

  • Racial Frigate V
  • Spaceship Command III
  • Covert Ops I
  • CPU Management II
  • Power Grid Management II
  • Electronics Upgrades V

However, it is not recommended, and downright stupid, to fly a bomber in a PVP setting without a covert ops cloaking device, and Torpedo Launchers. The use of these modules, require the skills:

  • Cloaking IV
  • Torpedoes I
  • Missile Launcher Operation IV
  • Heavy Missiles III
  • Light Missiles III

Suggested Skills

Aside from these basic required skills, it is suggested that you have the following skills. These skills are designed to push the strengths of the bomber and minimize it's chance of being destroyed. Many are simply fitting skills, that ease the use of more powerful modules.

  • Navigation III
  • Acceleration Control III
  • Warp Drive Operation III
  • Spaceships Command IV
  • Evasive Maneuvering III
  • CPU Management V
  • Power Grid Management V
  • Target Painting II
  • Electronic Warfare II
  • Sensor Linking II
  • Long Range Targeting III
  • Signature Analysis III
  • Target Management III
  • Shield Management III
  • Shield Operation III
  • Capacitor Management III
  • Energy Upgrades III
  • Launcher Rigging II
  • Astronautic Rigging II
  • Jury Rigging III
  • Mechanics IV

In addition, you will want to get missile launcher skills as high as possible, as well as Bomb Launching skills. These skills include:

  • Missile Bombardment IV
  • Missile Projection III
  • Rapid Launch III
  • Target Navigation Prediction III
  • Warhead Upgrades III
  • Bomb Deployment I
  • Covert Ops IV


Presented from an export from EVEMon from a blank Caldari character:(No implants, etc.)

Skill plan for Manticore StealthBomber

  • Skill Name (Time to complete; approximage cost of skill book)
    • Caldari Frigate III (7 hours, 19 minutes, 2 seconds
    • Caldari Frigate IV (1 day, 17 hours, 23 minutes, 40 seconds)
    • Caldari Frigate V (9 days, 18 hours, 9 minutes, 40 seconds)
    • Electronics Upgrades I (16 minutes, 40 seconds; 100,000 ISK)
    • Electronics Upgrades II (1 hour, 17 minutes, 38 seconds)
    • Electronics Upgrades III (7 hours, 19 minutes, 2 seconds)
    • Electronics Upgrades IV (1 day, 17 hours, 23 minutes, 40 seconds)
    • Electronics Upgrades V (9 days, 18 hours, 9 minutes, 40 seconds)
    • Covert Ops I (33 minutes, 20 seconds; 4,000,000 ISK)
    • CPU Management IV (20 hours, 41 minutes, 50 seconds)
    • Cloaking I (50 minutes; 3,500,000 ISK)
    • Cloaking II (3 hours, 52 minutes, 52 seconds)
    • Cloaking III (21 hours, 57 minutes, 8 seconds)
    • Cloaking IV (5 days, 4 hours, 11 minutes)
    • Missile Launcher Operation I (8 minutes, 20 seconds; 20,000 ISK)
    • Missile Launcher Operation II (38 minutes, 50 seconds)
    • Missile Launcher Operation III (3 hours, 39 minutes, 30 seconds)
    • Missile Launcher Operation IV (20 hours, 41 minutes, 50 seconds)
    • Light Missiles I (16 minutes, 40 seconds; 20,000 ISK)
    • Light Missiles II (1 hour, 17 minutes, 38 seconds)
    • Light Missiles III (7 hours, 19 minutes, 2 seconds)
    • Heavy Missiles I (25 minutes; 100,000 ISK)
    • Heavy Missiles II (1 hour, 56 minutes, 26 seconds)
    • Heavy Missiles III (10 hours, 58 minutes, 34 seconds)
    • Torpedoes I (33 minutes, 20 seconds; 400,000 ISK)
    • Torpedoes II (2 hours, 35 minutes, 14 seconds)
    • Torpedoes III (14 hours, 38 minutes, 6 seconds)
    • Torpedoes IV (3 days, 10 hours, 47 minutes, 20 seconds)
    • Acceleration Control I (33 minutes, 20 seconds; 40,000 ISK)
    • Acceleration Control II (2 hours, 35 minutes, 14 seconds)
    • Acceleration Control III (14 hours, 38 minutes, 6 seconds)
    • Warp Drive Operation I (8 minutes, 20 seconds; 30,000 ISK)
    • Warp Drive Operation II (38 minutes, 50 seconds)
    • Warp Drive Operation III (3 hours, 39 minutes, 30 seconds)
    • Spaceship Command IV (20 hours, 41 minutes, 50 seconds)
    • Evasive Maneuvering I (16 minutes, 40 seconds; 25,000 ISK)
    • Evasive Maneuvering II (1 hour, 17 minutes, 38 seconds)
    • Evasive Maneuvering III (7 hours, 19 minutes, 2 seconds)
    • CPU Management V (4 days, 21 hours, 4 minutes, 50 seconds)
    • Power Grid Management IV (20 hours, 41 minutes, 50 seconds)
    • Power Grid Management V (4 days, 21 hours, 4 minutes, 50 seconds)
    • Target Painting I (25 minutes; 90,000 ISK)
    • Target Painting II (1 hour, 56 minutes, 26 seconds)
    • Electronic Warfare I (16 minutes, 40 seconds; 120,000 ISK)
    • Electronic Warfare II (1 hour, 17 minutes, 38 seconds)
    • Sensor Linking I (25 minutes; 100,000 ISK)
    • Sensor Linking II (1 hour, 56 minutes, 26 seconds)
    • Long Range Targeting I (16 minutes, 40 seconds; 88,000 ISK)
    • Long Range Targeting II (1 hour, 17 minutes, 38 seconds)
    • Long Range Targeting III (7 hours, 19 minutes, 2 seconds)
    • Signature Analysis I (8 minutes, 20 seconds; 75,000 ISK)
    • Signature Analysis II (38 minutes, 50 seconds)
    • Signature Analysis III (3 hours, 39 minutes, 30 seconds)
    • Target Management I (8 minutes, 20 seconds; 100,000 ISK)
    • Target Management II (38 minutes, 50 seconds)
    • Target Management III (3 hours, 39 minutes, 30 seconds)
    • Shield Management I (25 minutes; 170,000 ISK)
    • Shield Management II (1 hour, 56 minutes, 26 seconds)
    • Shield Management III (10 hours, 58 minutes, 34 seconds)
    • Shield Operation III (3 hours, 39 minutes, 30 seconds)
    • Capacitor Management I (25 minutes; 170,000 ISK)
    • Capacitor Management II (1 hour, 56 minutes, 26 seconds)
    • Capacitor Management III (10 hours, 58 minutes, 34 seconds)
    • Energy Grid Upgrades I (16 minutes, 40 seconds; 79,000 ISK)
    • Energy Grid Upgrades II (1 hour, 17 minutes, 38 seconds)
    • Energy Grid Upgrades III (7 hours, 19 minutes, 2 seconds)
    • Mechanics III (3 hours, 39 minutes, 30 seconds)
    • Jury Rigging I (16 minutes, 40 seconds; 60,000 ISK)
    • Jury Rigging II (1 hour, 17 minutes, 38 seconds)
    • Jury Rigging III (7 hours, 19 minutes, 2 seconds)
    • Launcher Rigging I (25 minutes; 100,000 ISK)
    • Launcher Rigging II (1 hour, 56 minutes, 26 seconds)
    • Astronautics Rigging I (25 minutes; 20,000 ISK)
    • Astronautics Rigging II (1 hour, 56 minutes, 26 seconds)
    • Mechanics IV (20 hours, 41 minutes, 50 seconds)
    • Missile Bombardment I (16 minutes, 40 seconds; 80,000 ISK)
    • Missile Bombardment II (1 hour, 17 minutes, 38 seconds)
    • Missile Bombardment III (7 hours, 19 minutes, 2 seconds)
    • Missile Bombardment IV (1 day, 17 hours, 23 minutes, 40 seconds)
    • Missile Projection I (33 minutes, 20 seconds; 100,000 ISK)
    • Missile Projection II (2 hours, 35 minutes, 14 seconds)
    • Missile Projection III (14 hours, 38 minutes, 6 seconds)
    • Rapid Launch I (16 minutes, 40 seconds; 40,000 ISK)
    • Rapid Launch II (1 hour, 17 minutes, 38 seconds)
    • Rapid Launch III (7 hours, 19 minutes, 2 seconds)
    • Target Navigation Prediction I (16 minutes, 40 seconds; 60,000 ISK)
    • Target Navigation Prediction II (1 hour, 17 minutes, 38 seconds)
    • Target Navigation Prediction III (7 hours, 19 minutes, 2 seconds)
    • Warhead Upgrades I (41 minutes, 40 seconds; 1,000,000 ISK)
    • Warhead Upgrades II (3 hours, 14 minutes, 4 seconds)
    • Warhead Upgrades III (18 hours, 17 minutes, 36 seconds)
    • Bomb Deployment I (33 minutes, 20 seconds; 8,000,000 ISK)
    • Covert Ops II (2 hours, 35 minutes, 14 seconds)
    • Covert Ops III (14 hours, 38 minutes, 6 seconds)
    • Covert Ops IV (3 days, 10 hours, 47 minutes, 20 seconds)

34 unique skills, 95 skill levels; Total time: 62 days, 15 hours, 52 minutes, 54 seconds; Cost: 18,687,000 N.B. Skill costs are based on CCP's database and are indicative only

Recommended Skills

The Recommended skill plan essentially pushes the previous listed skills as high as possible. You want to maximize the ship's DPS by getting all the missile support skills to IV or V. As well as the Covert Ops skill itself to V, however it is a very long train at around 18 Days. Additionally, you want to maximize the ships agility and speed, by pumping navigation skills as high as possible, as well as the fitting and tanking skills found in Electronics, Engineering, and Mechanic. Lastly, you will want to get Bomb Deployment to IV for the ability to use the Void and Lockbreaker Bombs.

The Different roles of Stealth Bombers

Black Ops Gang

Bombers can be very effective in gangs of all cloaky ships. Usually a recon will find and tackle a good target and then call in the rest of the gang, either from the neighbouring system, wormhole or by lighting a cyno for a black ops battleship's covert jump portal. In this role bombers tend to be optimised for torpedoes rather than bombing.

Bombing Wing

A large fleet can be accompanied by a force of bombers. The bomber force acts mostly independently of the main fleet, often with their own FC and as a separate in-game fleet. The bomber wing will try to get bombing runs in on the enemy fleet to destroy, soften up or simply distract them as support for the main fleet. Bombers in this role will be bomb fit.

Bombing Squadron

In general usage a Bombing Squadron is composed of 7 bombers. It is required that all bombers in the squadron have the same type of bomb. Ideally, the squadron is homogenous as far as type of bomber hull.

Fleet DD

A bomber attached to a fleet that's not part of a bombing wing (either because there are too few bombers or you are fighting in high or low sec where bombs aren't available) can deal damage with torpedoes. In this role a bomber acts a little like an EWAR ship, warping in at range, fighting aligned at maximum range and warping out when targeted. If left alone a bomber's torpedoes will do impressive damage to battlecruiser and battleship sized targets, however if a bomber is frequently targeted its continual warping out and in will reduce its DPS considerably compared to a more durable battleship or battlecruiser. Bombers can be used in frigate gangs to bring a "big punch" for use against large targets, but this is rare. Remember, you're made of glass, so don't decloak until:

  • You're in position at range.
  • You're aligned out.
  • You're ready to fire, at a ship you can properly damage with torpedoes.
  • There's nothing around that can tackle you (hint: Lachesis or interceptors).

Ersatz Scout

While not as capable in this role as a covert ops frigate, a bomber is still quite adept at evading gate camps and enemy fleets, providing intel and getting warp-ins on enemy ships hanging at tacticals. A bomber attached to a fleet that is not part of a bombing wing may well be asked to perform some or all of these roles.

Fitting Exceptions

  • Probe Launcher
    • A bomber may be requested to fit an expanded probe launcher to find further targets in the system. The extreme CPU requirements of this module require it to be kept offline or to use a modified fit that will seriously reduce the bomber's effectiveness at its main role. As such, if the fleet needs a prober a covert ops ship is very much preferred.
  • Warp Disruptor
    • If you do not have recon ships during Black ops operations then you may also need to have your Manticore or Nemesis fit a Point to the ship and act as a tackle. This should only be used as a last resort because their fragility means a bomber usually cannot hold a tackled target for long.

Tips

The Five "R's"

Bombing runs are the ultimate purpose of Stealth Bombers. To throw bombs at some unsuspecting group of ships defines the concept of gank. However, if in the throwing of bombs you find yourself on the wrong side of the killmail you may be forgetting the Five "R's".

  • RUN AWAY: As soon as your bomb is released, warp away. With few exceptions the Stealth Bomber never remains on grid post bomb release. Uncloak - Bombs Away! - RUN AWAY!"
  • REMOVE YOURSELF: After running way you will likely be heading in warp to a pre-planned escape point. Upon landing at that escape point, REMOVE YOURSELF from the place you just landed. Other members of your squadron may be landing there in short order and SB's in close proximity post-attack are a mistake. Your aim is to be at least 2,500 meters away from your landing point so decloaking is less likely to happen.
  • RELOAD: As soon as practical after launching your bomb RELOAD your bomb launcher. Many escape points are far enough away that you ought to be able to complete a 10 second reload prior to landing. A fully loaded stealth bomber has more utility than a half empty launcher. Plus, it frees up space in cargo for more bombs or even loot if your run was wildly successful.
  • RECLOAK: An SB that is not cloaked is a glass pigeon waiting to get popped. RECLOAK as soon as you have reloaded.
  • RESET: After reaching your escape point the bomber leader may have you RESET at an observation point. Being ready to go on command or even anticipating the reset may give your squadron the opportunity to restrike a target... Be ready, immediately.

Pre-Fleet

  • Bookmarks Bookmarks Bookmarks BOOKMARKS!
  • More BOOKMARKS!
  • Tactical bookmarks, that is, bookmarks on a gate or station that sit 250-350KM away from the gate are your life blood and savior in bombers. They allow you to warp into a gate at range, to check the gate for any potential targets, without the worry of being decloaked by anyone. Additionally, they provide a great bounce spot if you need to warp out of an engagement. Warping 200km out is a much faster way to break a lock and cloak back up than to warp out to a near by celestial. Additionally, tactical bookmarks will save your ship countless times in null security space where bubbles abound on gates and stations.
  • Know the optimal range of your launchers, and what range you need to warp in at. Also remember that at your optimal, it may take up to 10-12 seconds for the first volley to hit the target. It is not uncommon to have up to 3 volleys in space before the first shot lands.

Basic Fleet Tactics

  • Make sure your SC and FC know they have a/some bombers. Do this before the fleet undocks. Check that they're happy to have bombers along, and find out if they want to use you in a specific way.
  • Do your best to travel just behind/in-front of the fleet (sort of a -1 or -0.5). Showing up after the battle is in full swing for a surgical strike is where bombers really shine. Your goal isn't to be the first thing they see, but the last.
  • After landing at the battle grid, double click in space in a direction perpendicular to the direction you approached from before realigning. This will keep fleetmates who show up a few moments after you from decloaking you if they come in on the same line.
  • Be on the field as close to the beginning of the battle as possible, in comfortable range (around 40-50km) and aligned to a celestial. Decloak after the battle starts and targets are otherwise occupied. Attack whatever ship your FC calls primary. Only decloak if you are ready to lock and attack immediately.
  • Once you get a lock, activate all of your modules and wait for impact.
  • You cannot recloak immediately; generally firing around 2 salvos while getting ready to either recloak or warp out is ideal. However if there is an abundance of ewar on the field you may consider staying to unleash the pain.
  • When your second salvo launches, recloak and wait for your launcher cycle to finish. You can cloak while your modules are active; they will automatically shut off.
  • Decloak and repeat. Your torpedoes will NOT hit if you recloak within 3 seconds of them hitting the target.

Ships to Watch Out For

  • Interceptors/Fast Tackle: They can close the 50km gap between you and the battle in a matter of seconds. They will do this, and they will kill you. Keep your overview sorted by range, and when you see someone moving up the list quickly, it's time to bounce, cloak, and then return to the fray from a different angle.
  • Snipers: Keep an eye out for ships that are often fit for range, such as the Tornado, Naga, Oracle, Apocalypse, or Zealot. They only have to hit you once, and your sensor dampener will not be effective enough against them to keep you safe from their attack.
  • Drones: A target's drones will continue to attack you after they have been jammed and their locks on you will prevent you from cloaking. Even after the target has been destroyed its drones can keep you locked and prevent you from cloaking. The point here is to not get locked. At all.
  • HAC's / Factional Cruisers: Vagabond, Dramiels, Cynabals, are frigate killers. These ships have speed, distance, Drones, and a punch. If these are on the field then keep cloaked until they are destroyed, or watch them like a hawk for signs they are coming for you.

Rookie Mistakes

New Stealth Bomber pilots will probably do one or two of these at least once.

  • Warp to 0 on a battle.
  • Linger on a gate an end up getting smartbombed.
  • Forget to prealign before decloaking.
  • Get decloaked by a fleetmate who warped past them because they did not immediately start moving upon landing at the battle site.
  • Get locked by an enemy and tell themselves "I'm good for another salvo."

Targets

  • You will be most effective against larger targets like battlecruisers and battleships. At no point should a bomber ever consider engaging any cruiser or frigate by itself. Cynabals and Dramiels are bomber eating machines.
  • Target painters will help against cruiser hulls, but what you really want is for them to activate their MWD
  • Frigate hulls can shrug off a lot of torpedoes. You can whore on the mail if you really must, but if you haven't yet uncloaked and there's some intel value in not revealing your presence to anything in d-scan range, you may want to consider holding off.

Bombing Techniques

The other thing that sets the bomber hull apart, besides the ability to fit torpedoes onto a frigate hull, is where it actually gets it name from - the ability to fit the Bomb Launcher I/II. From this module you fire the six flavors of bombs that exist. But what is a bomb actually?


The Bomb

It is a missile in essence that does Area of Effect damage of a certain type. It will shoot out from the front of your ship at 3km/s for 10 seconds and then blow up. However, unlike a missile, it doesn't require that you lock a target. It's essentially a 'dumbfire' rocket. Where your ship's nose is pointed at the time you cycle the bomb launcher module, is the direction it will go. This make the bomb a weapon that takes a fair bit of experience and skill to use effectively. And when you factor in that you have six other bombers also shooting off a bomb, then the complexity just increases and the skill of the FC is also a critical factor now. Then imagine that you have multiple bomber wings making a run on the same target... it sounds impossible to coordinate and pull off, but it can be done.

Bombs can also be separated into two categories.

Damage Bombs: Straight forward big explosions of either EM, Explosive, Thermal or Kinetic damage.

Utility Bombs: They require higher levels of skill with Bomb Deployment, but are useful in niche situations. The Void Bomb will neutralize a certain amount of capacitor energy from any ship within its area of effect. The Lockbreaker Bomb is an ewar bomb in essence. It will cause any target locks that a ship is maintaining to fail within its area of effect.

Now, back to coordinating bombers...there are two Bombing Techniques that can be applied:

Team Technique

This is where each bomber is co-ordinated by the FC. The FC will call for each bomber to approach/align to a target/target zone/bookmark. They will warp to the point where they begin their attack run, approach and call out ranges to target for the FC. The FC then has to judge the best time to order the release of bombs, whereupon the wing will warp immediately to the escape point. Onus with this technique is on how well the bombers act as a team, and actual piloting skill. Its versatile, flexible and the FC can call abort at any point, until the bombs are flying. It's also ideal for bombing single/small gang targets. It's weakness is that fleet management and FC-ing becomes impractical as soon as you grow beyond two wings of bombers. It also allows human error in aiming the bomb into the equation.

Quarterback/Flyhalf Technique

This technique uses a cloaked scout to sneak to within 30km of the enemy fleet/target. The FC then warps the fleet of bombers to a point where he can draw a straight line from his fleet, through the scout, and straight into the enemy targets. He will then squad warp the bombers to the scout at zero. The bombers in midwarp, will keep a close eye on their 'Distance to target' reading and speed. The moment they begin to decelerate, they decloak, and spam the Bomb launcher button, until it turns red. The effect of this is you will exit warp, and the instant your warp field collapses, a bomb will shoot out of your launcher. Bombers can immediately warp off to the escape point/align to random celestial (in the case of an ad hoc bomb attack) to escape, reload bomb launcher and cloak up. The advantage of this is that it allows for minimum amount of time on a dangerous grid, the aiming has already been done for the whole bomber wing by the scout, and the mid-warp shuffle that the game does to arrange the ships, has the effect of nicely overlapping the AOE damage of each bomb.

The Flyhalf technique also allows for the coordination of multiple wings of bombers. When the bomber fleet gathers at the observation point, they are assigned ranges to warp at. (John warps at 0, Jill at 10, James at 20, Harmony at 30, Guile at 50, Titus at 70, Steven at 100). This will prevent a mass cascade decloak of the entire fleet if one person DCs/makes a mistake, or in the case of a spy/awoxer, only one bomber wing will die. The FC can then squad warp each bomber group at will at the enemy. Ensuring enough time between squad warps so that their bombs have enough time to detonate, before the next wave of bombs goes off.


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