I saw an interesting one today, by Hannibal (sp?). Anti-fighter frigates behind the MWM cruiser line. Not sure if they were hedged, or in formation, or otherwise leashed, but it was pretty effective. You could get a LOT of anti-fighter weapons in a small area that way, if the frigate cross section was small enough, and they were out of range of my own MWM ships.
Now, his frigates were shielded, but I think armor might be a better option, so the anti-fighter frigates don’t just get swept away by rocket fighters. Of course, shields work pretty well too, especially if the fighters can’t concentrate effectively.
Normally I went with cruisers for the anti-fighter work, because with unleashed fighters, they usually wipe the frigates first, and very quickly too, and while the fighters could grind my anti-fighter cruisers up pretty quick, there are enough cruisers that the fighters are more likely to glom on to my tanks.
It seems laser and pulse fighters are a lot easier to butcher than rocket fighters, so I have been working out ways so my rocket fighters vulture on to enemy missile ships once their shields are down. For some reason, I see a lot of missile ships with shields but very light armor.
What ratio of tractors to beam do you go with on your anti-fighter ships? Or do you spread the tractors around?
What orders should I give to my painter fighters to make them most likely to paint a fighter that a rocket fighter will engage? Retaliate? Rescue? I don’t want my squadrons to shoot off their whole wad at one fighter.