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Named after a child-devouring demon of Amarrian legend, the Bhaalgorn is the pride and joy of the Blood Raider cabal. Though it is known to be based on an Armageddon blueprint, the design's origin remains shrouded in mystery. Those of a superstitious persuasion whisper in the dark of eldritch ceremonies and arcane rituals, but for most people, the practical aspect of the matter will more than suffice: you see one of these blood-red horrors looming on the horizon, it's time to make yourself scarce.
Minmatar Battleship bonuses (per skill level):
The Bhaalgorn is a Blood Raider pirate faction battleship with bonuses to Energy Neutralizer and Nosferatu drain amount and Stasis Webifier range making it excellent for PvP of all fleet sizes, despite being relatively expensive. The Bhaalgorn is a primarily Large Energy Turret using ship and gets a 100% role bonus to Large Energy Turret damage, meaning that the turrets used in its four turret hardpoints do the same effective damage as eight. Bhaalgorns are mostly found with Heavy Energy Neutralizers in their spare high slots, or in certain situations in all of their high slots, as the Amarr Battleship bonus to drain amount makes the Bhaalgorn deadly at capacitor warfare, being huge threats to even the biggest of ships. Due to the Bhaalgorn's slot layout of five mid slots and seven low slots, the Bhaalgorn is mostly found in an armor tanking configuration. This is beneficial as it also allows the pilot to fit Stasis Webifiers to the battleship, which the hull gets a range bonus for.
The Bhaalgorn's bonus to Energy Neutralizing makes it a popular choice for wormholes, as it can bring the power of its bonused Energy Neutralizers upon the enemy whilst not endangering the mass limit of Wormholes too much.
On other ships, Energy Nosferatus are limited by only having an effect when the ship's capacitor is lower than its target's. The Bhaalgorn's innate bonus throws this mechanic out the window, allowing the Bhaalgorn to use Energy Nosferatus on hostiles regardless of the Bhaalgorn's capacitor level. This makes Nosferatus very viable on this battleship.
The Bhaalgorn is a very capacitor intensive ship, with Lasers having the highest capacitor use of all weaponry and Heavy Energy Neutralizers also being extremely capacitor hungry. As such, any and all capacitor skills help the Bhaalgorn tremendously. The Bhaalgorn's main tank choice in PvP is armor - and a lot of it - so having skills that enable Tech 2 Armor modules such as Hull Upgrades V are practically essential to this ship's survivability. As a pirate faction battleship, the Bhaalgorn is very expensive, so flying the ship with sub-par skills can turn this ship into a potential piñata, waiting for the enemy fleet to glady break it apart and reap the delicious killmail. Level V on all the below mentioned skills should be a very early goal for any Bhaalgorn pilot in order to make sure that they're getting the most out of such a capable but expensive battleship.
- Capacitor Management (3x) - A higher capacitor capacity increases the amount of "buffer" cap the Bhaalgorn has, meaning that, if a situation arises in which the Bhaalgorn pilot must use a lot of capacitor intensive modules at once, they have more capacitor to do so. Also, whilst the capacitor capacity increases, the recharge time does not, meaning that there is an overall gain in cap/second recharge.
- Capacitor Emission Systems (2x) - Bhaalgorns are almost always found equipped with some sort of Energy Neutralizer module. These modules (especially the Heavy variants) are extremely cap intensive over long periods of time, and Capacitor Emission Systems reduces the amount of capacitor used by any modules the skill by 5% per level. At Rank V, this means Energy Neutralizers cost 25% less capacitor, and so the Bhaalgorn has much better staying power over a longer period of time were the situation require extensive use of its neuts.
- Capacitor Systems Operation (1x) - Alongside the aforementioned skills, this skill increases the longevity of the ship's capacitor by allowing it to recharge faster. Combined with Capacitor Management, a ship's capacitor can be made to last much, much longer and recharge faster upon brief downtimes. This skill also makes the Bhaalgorn more resistant to being neutralized itself, as Heavy Neutralizers have a 24 second cycle time, and higher levels of this skill allow the ship to regenerate more capacitor during the period between neutralizer cycles.
- Controlled Bursts (2x) - The Bhaalgorn's main weaponry is Large Energy Turrets. These turrets are the most capacitor heavy of all guns. Alongside the capacitor already being devoted to Energy Neutralizers, most Bhaalgorns have Large Energy Turrets fitted, so higher levels of this skill ensure the burden placed on the ship by these turrets is as minimal as can be. Wormhole Bhaalgorns are usually found without guns, so this is a skill some Bhaalgorn pilots can afford to miss out on getting to V.
- Hull Upgrades (2x) - An unskippable skill for any armor tanking ship, Hull Upgrades both increases a ship's maximum armor hitpoints by 5% per level and enables use of all sorts of armor modules. Bhaalgorns are almost always found with 1600mm Reinforced Steel Plates and, with Battleship class ship's generous power grid allocation, Tech 2 variants of these armor plates can be easily fit onto the ship. The Bhaalgorn has no innate bonus to survivability in terms of resists or raw HP, so every little bit of resists helps.
- Armor Rigging (3x) - Tech 2 armor rigs usually have quite significant bonuses over their Tech 1 siblings, with Trimark Armor Pumps being no exception to this. As was just mentioned, the Bhaalgorn isn't bonused to survivability in any way, so the bonus to armor HP afforded by Trimark Armor Pump II is nothing to scoff at. Higher levels of Armor Rigging reduce the penalty to maximum velocity that is found on the Trimark Armor Pump.
- Amarr/Minmatar Battleship - Depending on the ship's intended role (whether it be large fleet PvP, solo work, wormholes, incursions etc.), getting the appropriate skill up will greatly increase the Bhaalgorn's potential. For Incursion uses, Minmatar Battleship (8x) will be a boon to the ship's potential, whilst the Amarr Battleship (8x) is not as useful, as NPCs are immune to Energy Neutralizing effects. In a Wormhole, or in solo work, getting both Battleship skills up is advisable as both bonuses will aid in the ship's potential.
- General Gunnery Supports - All the Gunnery support skills (such as Rapid Firing (2x) and Sharpshooter (2x)) are useful to the Bhaalgorn's damage potential when using Large Energy Turrets. Trajectory Analysis (5x) could perhaps be left slightly lower than the other skills, as Energy Turrets generally have negligible fall-off.
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- Microwarpdrive use should be kept to a minimum, as 100mn Microwarpdrives are very capacitor intensive.
- Stagger your Energy Neutralizers so that they each complete their cycles at different times. This makes it very hard to use Capacitor Boosters to mitigate the neutralization.
- Use your webs on different targets. Because they aren't bonused to slowing amount, they're heavily stacking penalized when several are put on one ship.
- Because the Bhaalgorn is bonused to Stasis Webifier range, you'll have an easy time catching kiting frigates or stragglers on field with your webifiers.
- Don't be scared to use fewer energy neutralizers at the same time to give your capacitor a chance to regenerate. As long as your foe is tackled, you have plenty of time to neutralize them later.
- Don't waste your capacitor on your guns if you're having capacitor trouble. Unless your fleet composition uses Bhaalgorn as your main DPS, there will be other ships in fleet with more DPS than yours.
For more information about capacitor warfare and other capacitor warfare using ships see the Capacitor Warfare Guide.