NPC damage types

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There are four different damage types in EVE:

  • Electromagnetic (EM)
  • Kinetic
  • Thermal
  • Explosive

All weapons in EVE do at least one (often two) of these damage types, and every ship has different resistances against each. Understanding damage types helps you to survive longer and deal more damage to enemy ships:

  • If you know that your enemy uses weapons which deal a particular damage type, you can fit modules to your ship to increase your resistance to that damage type, making your enemy's weapons less effective against you.
  • Conversely, if you know that your enemy's ship has a low resistance to a particular damage type, you can use weapons which deal that specific damage type, making them more effective.
Native resistance Weapon damage
Shields Armor Lasers Hybrids Projectiles Disintegrators Drones Missiles
EM damage EM - - + + Yes (60%) Yes Yes (Amarr) Yes
Thermal damage Thermal - + Yes (40%) Yes (40%) Yes Yes (60%) Yes (Gallente) Yes
Kinetic damage Kinetic + - Yes (60%) Yes Yes (Caldari) Yes
Explosive damage Explosive + + - - Yes Yes (40%) Yes (Minmatar) Yes

Some points to note:

  • "Native resistance" is a ship's resistance to damage before any modules or rigs are fitted. For instance, without any modules or rigs, shields are most susceptible to EM damage and most resistant to explosive damage. However, keep in mind that it's possible (with the right modules) to compensate for a ship's weaknesses to some degree.
  • Thermal damage is not to be confused with heat damage, which is caused by overloading modules.
  • Energy turrets (often called "lasers") do about 60% EM and 40% thermal damage. The exact proportions depend on the frequency crystals used.
  • Hybrid weapons do about 60% kinetic and 40% thermal damage. The exact proportions depend on the ammunition type used.
  • Each type of projectile weapon ammunition does two (sometimes three) different damage types (one of which is always kinetic).
  • Entropic Disintegrators deal about 60% thermal and 40% explosive damage. The exact proportions depend on the plasma charge used.
  • Drones from each of the four factions do one damage type each, but they have slightly different stats (for example, Caldari drones (kinetic) do less damage than Gallente drones (thermal), but are slightly faster).
  • Each missile type comes in four variants, each doing one damage type. The variant have otherwise identical stats, although some missile-using ships have bonuses to one damage type (notably, many Caldari ships have a bonus to kinetic missile damage).
  • The more "exotic" weapons in EVE (such as smartbombs, bombs, and doomsday weapons) have variants for each damage type, which are generally otherwise equivalent.

NPC damage types

Attibute tab of the NPC Dagan which you have to fight in the SoE mission Our Man Dagan. You can see that he is weakest to explosive. Thus you would try to deal explosive damage. Because he deals explosive and kinetic, you would usually try fit resists against those. But in this case most try to avoid taking damage by orbiting close in an AB fit destroyer.

Just like player ships, NPCs have different resistances for different damage types. If you are running missions or ratting, it is helpful to know towards which damage the NPCs are weak and what damage they deal. This way you can can fit your ship accordingly and maximise your effectiveness against your chosen targets. You can see the resistances and damage types dealt in the attribute tab of an NPC if you open its info window.

In general, all NPCs from a certain faction have similar damage profiles, making them much more predictable than player ships. Additionally, each faction only uses particular types of electronic warfare; this is also noted in the table below. Ship fitting tools like PYFA can simulate combat against rats of different factions, giving you even more fine-grained control over your fit. Please note that a few special NPCs don't follow the pattern of their faction.

Faction Damage to deal Damage to resist Electronic Warfare
Angel Cartel Explosive / Kinetic Explosive (62%) / Kinetic (22%) Target Painters
Blood Raiders EM / Thermal EM (50%) / Thermal (48%) NOS/Neut, Tracking Disruptor
Guristas Pirates Kinetic / Thermal Kinetic (79%) / Thermal (18%) ECM
Mordu's Legion Kinetic / EM [1] Kinetic (70%) / Thermal (30%)
Rogue Drones EM/Thermal (varies) [2]
Sansha's Nation
(missions / anomalies)
EM / Thermal EM (53%) / Thermal (47%) Tracking Disruptor
Serpentis Kinetic / Thermal Thermal (55%) / Kinetic (45%) Sensor Dampener
CONCORD [3] Kinetic / Thermal (Omni) [4]
Equilibrium of Mankind Kinetic[5] Kinetic (74%) / Thermal (26%)
Khanid Kingdom EM / Thermal Thermal / EM
Mercenaries Kinetic / Thermal Kinetic / Thermal
Sleepers (Omni) [4] (Omni) [4] (all)
Sansha's Nation
(incursions)
(Omni) [4] (Omni) [4] (all)
Triglavian Collective
(abyss)
Explosive / Thermal [6] Thermal (60%) / Explosive (40%) (all except ECM)
Triglavian Collective
(invasions)
Explosive / Thermal (Omni) [4] (all except ECM)
Amarr Empire EM / Thermal EM (47%) / Thermal (42%) NOS/Neut, Tracking Disruptor
Caldari State Kinetic / Thermal Kinetic (51%) / Thermal (48%) ECM
Gallente Federation Kinetic / Thermal Kinetic (60%) / Thermal (39%) Sensor Dampener
Minmatar Republic Explosive / Kinetic Explosive (50%) / Kinetic (31%) Target Painter
  1. ^ Kinetic damage is best, EM and thermal are both ~75% as effective as kinetic but EM is better against shields and Mordu's ships have active shields so it is better overall. EMP is best projectiles to use.
  2. ^ Rogue Drones have a tendency to vary wildly in what damage type they deal and are vulnerable to. Low-level missions seem to lean towards EM/Thermal while high-level missions lean towards Explosive/Kinetic. Consult mission reports about the specific mission or exploration site before undocking.
  3. ^ This refers to CONCORD enemies found in certain missions (particularly in low- and null-sec). CONCORD ships patrolling high-sec are invincible, so the damage types they do is not relevant.
  4. ^ a b c d e f "(Omni)" means that the ships do all damage types equally, or are equally vulnerable to all damage types.
  5. ^ Em/Th approx 75% as effective as kinetic. Explosive around 60% compared to kinetic. EMP the best projectile ammo
  6. ^ Unless in an Electrical or Exotic filament, in which case use EM or Kinetic respectively


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