The "cloak trick" is a maneuver that takes advantage of the secondary effects of cloaking devices to reach 75% of maximum velocity (and thus enter warp) more quickly than would normally be possible. This maneuver is primarily used to avoid being targeted after jumping through a gate by aligning whilst cloaked.
What is it?
This is a technique that enables pilots to cloak while aligning after jumping through a gate. When done properly, this allows the pilot to almost instantly warp the second he breaks cloak. Information on further cloaking techniques can be found at the Cloaking class page.
You will need:
- one Improved Cloaking Device II
- one Microwarpdrive of the correct size for your ship. That is: 5MN for frigates and destroyers, 50MN for cruisers, battlecruisers and industrials, and 500MN for battleships
- the shortcuts for these should be placed somewhere easily accessible, as you will need to hit them pretty quickly
You should not use:
- a Prototype Cloaking Device - although it can help to make some of your align time cloaked, you can't reach the required speed to warp instantly after, so you will spend a few seconds uncloaked
- a wrongly-sized microwarpdrive - doesn't give enough velocity bonus
- an afterburner - doesn't give enough velocity bonus
- an Orca - too heavy for the 500MN to provide enough velocity (however, see below)
With the Odyssey 1.1 industrial rebalancing, "fast-role" industrials ( Sigil, Badger, Wreathe, Hoarder, and Nereus) are able to easily fit 50MN MWDs and cloaks in addition to their tank and cargohold fittings.
The following T1 Industrial haulers don't have the raw power grid available to fit a 50MN MWD, and without extensive fitting for extra PG and higher skills pilots may not be able to fit them at all. As such, don't count on being able to do the cloak trick with these ships without sacrificing cargo capacity (low slots will need powergrid modules, and even rig slots may be needed for enough powergrid) and lower engineering skills.
How does it work?
Do these things in this order after jumping through a stargate or wormhole. Although you can do MWD then cloak (or do both at once), it is not recommended as having your MWD active before your cloak is a bad idea due to the signature radius bloom and the likelihood of spending more time uncloaked.
- Hit align to your point of interest
- Immediately after hit the cloak
- Immediately after you hit cloak hit your MWD (this does work, you can activate non-offensive modules for 5 seconds after you activate a cloaking device).
- When your MWD cycle is about 90-95% complete, deactivate your cloak and spam warp to your point of interest.
- The MWD will deactivate automatically, and when it does you will instantly enter warp.
Because the MWD boosts your (cloaked) speed by 500% for one cycle while you are cloaked you will end up at right around warp speed when you deactivate the cloak (right before the MWD cycle is complete.) Since you hit align before the cloak you will be aligned and at warp speed when the cloak drops. This equals near insta-warp. With practice, you can be uncloaked for literally less than a second total on a gate. Practice in high-sec and you will find this is actually pretty easy and effective.
Videos that demonstrate the technique
There are numerous videos of this technique posted on YouTube. These two videos provide clear demonstrations of the technique:
Warping with larger ships
You can use the same MWD trick to accelerate a big ship (such as an Orca or Rorqual) to warp speed without the cloak involved. Align, pulse the MWD once (click it twice in a row) and warp in 10 seconds instead of 30. The cloak trick technically still functions, but pilots will need to observe the specifics on how to time dropping the cloak, and it may require more time uncloaked at the end of the MWD cycle to get to just the right speed.