EMP Shield: Does it work?


I just played the Orion Ambush survival mission for the first time in ages. Around 45,000 points a massive wave of frigates armed with EMP missiles arrives. No problems, I thought, I’ll just refit my cruisers with EMP shields and we’ll be fine.

Well, it seems not. Even the first wave of the mission, which sports a measly two or three EMP frigates, was managing to incapacitate my - apparently shielded - cruisers. Looking at the stats, the EMP Shield has a strength of 66, while the best frigate EMP weapon is rated at 20. So what gives?

Any explanation on how exactly these work would be most welcome, but it’s pretty apparent to me that the shield needs a considerable boost if it’s to be any use: at present, it’s one of those modules that I simply never equip and on this evidence it’s with good reason.


From my own tests, every point of EMP shielding has 25% chances to stop an incoming EMP strength point (well, I made those tests some time ago, and didn’t save my results, so that’s off the top of my head). So you’ll need substantially more EMP shielding than the ennemy has EMP strength.

As I already said, I’m not sure about the 25% part, I’ll rerun the tests.

Edit: I’m positive, one EMP shield (66 EMP shield) would nullify around 45% of the shots from an EMP cannon (32 EMP strength), and IIRC this scales proportionaly, meaning you need a bit over 4 times as much protection as they have emp strength to get a protection nearing 100%.


Hm, that would sound about right. Thanks for the info. It definitely seems pretty useless then: having to use more than one space on such a specific device is kind of crazy.


It’s probably healthier to see the shield as further protection rather than the only way to get around the effects.

The frigate EMPs are obviously missiles, which can be shot down, and the cruiser beam has plasma-poor tracking on faster targets. A normal non-survival type fleet has the additional option of spreading strength around to more ships so there’s no single point of failure.