Tackling 101 Guide

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It has been suggested that this article or section be merged with The Way of the Tackler, Fitting a Tackle Frig and Tackling 101 to Tackling. (Discuss)

"The art of immobilizing the opponent in a way that said ship is unable to move"

Tackling is one of the most important roles in fleet warfare. Making it impossible for an enemy ship to move allows the fleet to kill it. Once tackled, the opponent can't warp away if he takes too much damage.


Contents

What is Tackling and Why is it Important?

  • Tackling first and foremost is the job of pinning down a ship so that it cannot escape.
  • One of the things that makes PvP so exciting in Eve is the fact that ships are hard to catch. That both helps and hinders us depending on which end of the fight we are on.
  • The job of the tackler is to pin down a ship so that the gunslingers can kill it. It may not sound very important and exciting, but it's important to note that battleship fights without tacklers usually end when the side whose shields drop just warps out. Without one side being trapped, it's very rare that a fight is going to end in a ship kill.
  • This means that as a tackler, it's you that allows a kill to happen and what you do also results in you being on the kill mail if you want that bit of glory.
  • One of the most important jobs of a squadron commander is getting his or her tacklers into play. That is the crucial point to battles, so knowing the role that a tackler plays in fleet operations is important to understanding why victory doesn't happen without them.


The 3 Basic Modules Used for Tackling

  • Warp Disruptor
  • Warp Scrambler
  • Stasis Webifier

Warp Disruptor (Point)

The warp disruptor does what its name says: it makes the opponent's ship unable to warp away. Once you get a lock on the opponent you can hit the button for the warp disruptor and it will disrupt the warpcore of the opponent's ship.

The basic range of the warp disruptor is 20km for a tech 1 module and 24km for a tech 2 module. The warpcore disabling strength for this module is 1 point.

Skill Requirements:
Navigation II
CPU management III
Tech1 module: Propulsion Jamming I
Tech2 module: Propulsion Jamming II

Warp Scrambler (Scram)

The warp scrambler works on same basic principles as the warp disruptor. The warp scrambler will also disable the warpcore of the opponent's ship. Warp scramblers also disable microwarp drives (MWD), even when the amount of warp strength in the target ship (boosted by fitting warp core stabilizers) exceeds the strength of the scram. Having 2 or more warp core stabilizers will counter the scram, yet the MWD still won't work.

The basic range for a warp scrambler is significantly lower then that of a warp disruptor. For a tech 1 module the range is 7.5km and for a tech 2 module the range is 9km. The warpcore disabling strength of this module is 2 points.

Skill Requirements:
Navigation II
CPU management III
Tech1 module: Propulsion Jamming I
Tech2 module: Propulsion Jamming II

Note: In Eve University fleets the frigate tacklers generally fit Warp Disruptors. This is because, when you are camping a gate, the warp disruptor's range can cover the entire uncloak area around the gate. The longer range of disruptors also helps frigate tacklers to stay out of smartbomb range.

Stasis Webifier (Web)

The stasis webifier is different from the warp disruptor and the warp scrambler. The stasis webifier focuses on decreasing the sub-warp speed of a ship. The sub-warp speed is the speed that you normally fly around at.

The sub-warp speed reduction depends on the version of the module. The tech 1 version causes a 50% speed reduction, the tech 2 version causes a 60% speed reduction. Both modules have a maximum range of 10km.

Skill Requirements:
Navigation II
CPU management III
Tech1 module: Propulsion Jamming I
Tech2 module: Propulsion Jamming IV

Note: While tackling someone, always use a warp disruptor or scrambler before the stasis webifier. Reducing the top speed of a ship with a web will make it easier for the target to warp away because they can then more quickly reach the 75% of top speed needed for initiating warp. So point first, then web.

Extra Modules for Tackling

  • Afterburner
  • Microwarpdrive
  • Sensor Booster
  • Overdrive Injector System
  • Nanofiber Internal Structure
  • Damage Control
  • Medium Shield Extender

Afterburner (AB)

As fitted to military jet fighters, afterburners can be fitted to ships in Eve. The afterburner increases your sub-warp speed by a percentage. The afterburner is used by tacklers to close the range to the target faster, to achieve a lock or to get into orbit range quickly.

The Tech 1 module boosts your speed by 112.5% (thus it doubles your speed plus another 12.5%). The Tech 2 version boosts your speed by 135%.

Skill Requirements:
Navigation I
Tech 1: Afterburner I
Tech 2: Afterburner IV

Microwarpdrive (MWD)

The microwarpdrive is a small warpdrive capable of giving a significant speed boost to your sub-warp speed. It's an upgraded version of the afterburner. Just like the AB, the MWD is used to close the range to the target quicker. A downside of the MWD is that your signature radius increases significantly, by 500%. Therefore, you will be much easier to hit while running the MWD. While in a tech 1 frigate, only use the MWD for getting closer to the target. Once you've reached orbit distance, turn it off. MWDs use more capacitor to run than afterburners and fitting a MWD, whether it's active or not, reduces the total capacity of your capacitor.

Both tech 1 and tech 2 modules give a 500% speedboost to the sub-warp speed of your ship. The advantage of the tech 2 module is a smaller reduction in the capacitor penalty: the tech 1 module reduces your capacitor capacity by 25%, the tech 2 module decreases it by 17%.

Skill Requirements:
Navigation III
Afterburner III
Tech 1: High Speed Maneuvering I
Tech 2: High Speed Maneuvering IV

Sensor Booster + Scan Resolution Script

To be effective as a tackler you first need to get a lock on the target you want to tackle. Every ship has a certain scan resolution, visible in the fitting window, which, together with your target's signature radius, determines the time it takes to lock a target. With a sensor booster you can increase that scan resolution which enables you to decrease the lock-time and so point or scram the target faster.

The tech 1 version of the sensor booster boosts your scan resolution by 25%, while the tech 2 version boosts it by 30%. Sensor Boosters also increase your maximum targeting range, but that's less relevant to tackling. If you put a scan resolution script in the sensor booster, the scan resolution bonus doubles and the bonus to targeting range disappears. So you can get a 50% scan resolution bonus from the tech 1 booster and a 60% from the tech 2 version.

Skill Requirements:
CPU management II
Tech 1: Long Range Targeting I
Tech 2: Long Range Targeting IV

Overdrive Injector System

As a tackler, speed is important in order to reach your target quickly. The faster you can get into targeting and warp disruption range, the faster you can tackle the target. The nice thing about overdrive injector systems is that they don't require powergrid or CPU. The downside of the overdrive injector system is that your cargohold m³ will decrease. As a tackler you do not use your cargohold, so you can ignore that penalty.

The sub-warp speed increase of the tech 1 overdrive injector system is 10.4% (with a cargohold penalty of 15%), and the tech 2 module gives a 12.5% increase speed (and a 20% cargohold penalty).

Skill Requirements:
Mechanics I
Tech 1: Hull Upgrades I
Tech 2: Hull Upgrades II

Nanofiber Internal Structure (Nano)

This is another module that increases your speed. Unlike the overdrive injector, however, it also makes your ship more agile. Using this module will help you keep a closer orbit at a higher speed making you harder to track, and thus harder to kill. Like overdrives, nanos don't require any powergrid or CPU. The inertia decrease will help you with the closer orbit. The downside of this module is that you get a lower amount of structure hit points (HP). In a way this doesn't matter, because, generally speaking, tackling frigates tend to die when they're hit regardless of their structure HP.

This module works well fitted together with one or more overdrive injector systems. This makes you faster and still allows you to keep that speed in a tight orbit.

The sub-warp speed increase from the tech 1 module is 7.84%, with a 13.1% inertia reduction. Your structure HP will be reduced by 15%. The tech 2 module increases sub-warp speed by 9.4%, cuts inertia by 15.8%, and reduces structure HP by 20%.

Skill Requirements:
Mechanics I
Tech 1: Hull Upgrades I
Tech 2: Hull Upgrades II

Damage Control

The damage control increases your shield, armour and hull resistances, making you much tougher and harder to kill.  A very much recommended module for any tackler, this will keep you alive a lot longer than without one, and has no drawbacks.  It will also make you much more resistant to smartbombs and drones, two major threats to tacklers.

The tech 1 module increases shield, armour and hull resistances by 7.5%, 10% and 50% respectively; the tech 2 module increases them by 12.5%, 15% and 60% respectively.

Skill Requirements:
Tech 1: Hull Upgrades I
Tech 2: Hull Upgrades IV

Medium Shield Extender

A medium shield extender is a great way to significantly increase the hitpoints of your tackler without slowing you down. While high speed will reduce the damage that you take, it will only reduce it - fitting modules to increase your HP will keep you alive and able to tackle for much longer.

While a small shield extender will be easier to fit, a medium extender provides far more HP and is generally preferred. You may need to use a Micro Auxiliary Power Core in order to provide the powergrid to fit one. A t1 medium shield extender gives you an additional 750 base shield hitpoints (most frigates have between 350 and 500 shield hitpoints to begin with, so that's a huge difference). A t2 medium shield extender increases your base shield hitpoints by a huge 1050 HP!

Skill Requirements:
Tech 1: Shield Upgrades I
Tech 2: Shield Upgrades IV
Additional Requirement: Capacitor Management II (to fit a Micro Auxiliary Power Core)


Extra skills for tackling

None of these navigation skills are actually essential - you can still be a great tackler without them - but they will make your life easier and mean a better tackler.  Train them to IV when you can, if you intend on tackling a lot.  They all affect any ship you fly, so have benefits even if you fly other things.

  • Spaceship Command - increases your agility by 2% per level
  • Evasive Maneuvring - increases your agility by 5% per level
  • Navigation - increases your speed by 5% per level
  • Acceleration Control - increases the speed boost from a MWD or AB by 5% per level
  • Warp Drive Operation - reduces the capacitor required to enter warp by 10% per level, meaning you can warp further in one go.

Tackling Practical

Now for the tackling bit. This is in fact fairly easy.

Preparation

  • Turn Sensor Booster on (if you are in a gatecamp, this should be on already).

The Fight

  • Move towards the target while turning AB/MWD on.
  • Once in locking range, lock the target.
  • Once in Warp Disruptor range (less than 20/24km), turn the Warp Disruptor on.
  • Call out on Mumble that you have point on the target, e.g. 'Kelduum Revaan has point on primary', or 'SilentBrick has point on the Drake'.
  • Continue using AB/MWD to approach the target.
  • Once at about 12 kilometers from the target set to orbit at 6km to 6.5km (this will keep you out of smartbomb range).
  • If your MWD is running, turn it off. Afterburners can keep running. (As explained above.)
  • Turn on your Stasis Webifier (you should be within 10km by now).
  • Now keep orbiting the target. If you get targeted, either bounce (warp to a nearby celestial then return), or keep orbiting if you want to die a 'Hero's death'.

Hot Modules

If your overview is setup properly, then keeping your Sensor Booster and Warp Disruptor hot is a good option for getting point on the target that much faster. Having your overview setup right significantly reduces the chances of you accidentally targeting a friendly or worse, neutral target, which would then result in Concord retaliation. If you choose to do this make sure your auto targeting is off, as the hot modules will immediately activate on the next targeted entity.

Weapons on a Tackler

As you can see, we haven't put any weapons in this guide. The reason is simple: as a tackler in a Uni fleet, tackling is your priority. The amount of damage that you might add is tiny compared to specialised damage-dealing ships, and while every little bit helps, it should be very low on your list of concerns. Fit all the other modules that you need first, and if you have some powergrid and CPU left fit whatever weapons you have room for. If you're fitting a MWD or a warp disruptor (both of which use a lot of capacitor to run), it's a good idea to fit projectile and missile weapons since these do not require capacitor to fire. Do not compromise your mid or low slot modules just to give you the CPU or powergrid to fit better weapons.

An additional option for high slots on a tackler is a small nosferatu (aka nos or vampire) - this module will drain capacitor from your target and give it to you, which will help keep your modules running. Most small nosferatus require you to be at quite close range (5500m to 6000m), so they may not be practical if you don't want to fight within stasis webifier range of your target. Despite this, a small nosferatu can prove worthwhile since it reduces the chance of you running out of capacitor and your target escaping. As with other high slot modules, you should avoid compromising your mid and low slot modules just to get one to fit. You can read more on capacitor warfare here.

A Note On Picking Your Target

When there's only one target on the field it's pretty obvious whom you should be tackling. Normally however, there are multiple targets to choose from and you're not the only tackler in your fleet. So whom do you tackle? As described in the Rookie's Guide To Fleet Ops you should pick a target whose character's name starts with the same letter as yours, or as close as possible in the alphabet. Naturally if your fleet/wing/squad commander has given you other orders follow those. But in the absence of specific direction, following this guidance will help ensure that your fleet's points are spread amongst the enemy fairly evenly. Pay attention to calls on Mumble and try to pick a different target if somebody else has already pointed the flashy you were headed for, or if your designated target is too far away or too fast for you to catch.

Additional Information

See also Tackling 101 and The way of the tackler and Newbie Tackling Guide.

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