Racial Confusion...


You’ll have to forgive me if this is a bit of an idiot question, but…

I’ve been playing away with GSB for a bit, but at the moment, I’m having a bit of a hard time with trying to figure out the races. It may likely be the way I’m playing, but I’m finding it hard to work out what the other races are good for (or at). Specifically, the number of modules available, as aside from the obvious, more modules = more survivability.

Currently, my tactics are a fairly basic mix of cruisers; PD crusiers at the front, cruisers with beam weapons and missile cruiser behind (with the odd frigate as missile of torpedo support or fighters). I haven’t seen speed to be a particularly huge advantage, and when I tried with close-rnage ships they seemed to get annhilated. (Thoguh that might have been just newbie-ness).

Given that the Federation’s cruisers have more modules (11 standard and 7 hardpoints), I’m trying to work out why any of the others are any better. I can see the Rebels have slightly better fighters (in that they have the bombers), but… The only other race I’ve been using is the alliance, because their Python cruisers have so many weapon hardpoints. I really can’t figure why I would need to use the unlockable hulls on most of the races, or the Imperials at all (save perhaps the 15/5 cruiser as a sort of damage shield.)

Clearly, there are some other factors in the other races aside from just the amount of hardpoints…but the hull bonuses - like the rebel’s speed bonuses - don’t seem to me to make up for the lower number of modules, and they don’t seem to come out orders of magnitude cheaper in that you could make up the difference by simply having more ships…

So, people who’ve got a much better grip on the game, what mind-numbingly obvious thing am I missing?

(By the by, as I have only just bought Tribes - as I literally only just discovered it coming to the forums to make this very post - I haven’t tried them yet, but the information on them is a bit more obvious in what they should be doing - and they have a lot of modules too.)


For the most part the racial bonus diversity boils down to the stat bonuses that are found on (most of) the hulls for that race.

Federation - Hitpoints
Alliance - Armor
Rebels - Speed
Empire - Shields

It’s only a general rule, as you obviously won’t find shield bonuses on empire fighters, but you get the idea. If hitpoints are what you are after, federation (or tribe) looks like the appropriate choice.

Alliance and empire do not get a fighter hull capable of mounting two weapons. There’s also some minor weapon variations across the original four races, usually in the form of a race-specific beam. Alliance get two additional shortrange armor piercing options.



what yurch said.

and don’t undersestimate the boni.
just try the rebels, you will notice that the speed bonus more than makes up for fewer slots. one less supercharged engine means less crew and less power consumed. and look at the rebel fighter with 14% speed bonus. you won’t get a faster fighter.
btw, buffalo and eagle have only one slot more than valhalla, but the valhalla bonus is much better.

(ofc some boni are rather useless, like power output in a fighter).

you just have to realise that you can’t play rebels like you play empire for example.
do some more testing and you will see that even apparently slight differences make a total different gameplay.



Also, remember that fewer slots also means cheaper ships, and thus more of them. It’s often not about making the best ship you can, but rather about making the most cost-effective ship that you can.


I can kind of go either way on this.

Smaller numbers of more expensive ships means less clumping and more ships able to get in range and fire. Large numbers of cheaper ships tends to result in more ships stuck in the back trying to push forward to get into weapons range.

Incidentally, I think another factor to consider is ship size. Fighters can bypass shields if they shoot while “inside” the shield. The bigger a ship is, the easier it is to do this. The really big cruiser models have to be able to handle a lot more direct damage to their armor whereas the smaller cruisers get a bit of a break with shield resist deflecting a lot more shots.


In my experience, the cost of the hull itself is never a consideration, but more slots OFTEN means that the user packs in more modules (but he/she does not have to!), thus making the ship more expensive…

I’ve used several designs in survival mode to good effect that had a couple free slots left, because this allowed more ships and that makes the scenarios EMP frigate spam far less effective


I have found at least on normal difficulty that on the larger maps spamming all fighter squadrons can easily wipe out most frigates (except for a couple of Rebel frigates) and given time eat away at the hull’s of larger vessels. I haven’t tried hard or expert yet so this tactic probably won’t work. Also I find the best fighter to spam with is the Federation Leopard fighter, since it has 2 weapon slots and looks pretty cool.



for federation it is undoubtly the best fighter. but rebel icarus and atlantis are way better…
achilles is somewhat on par i think.



I have recently built a rebel fleet setup and I agree the Atlantis and Icarus are extremely useful compared to Leopard fighters. I got some new high scores just using fleets of the 2 fighter squadrons.


unless you want a fighter whit a big engine and a low power weapon or the zero power launcher and a small useless engine or when you want a mix of medium engine and a weapon that needs some power



please show me an example then.

it is still useless since the power is either too high with a generator or too low without it. but a generator slows down the ship so much, that it is actually slower with a big engine.
take the imperial ballista fighter:

  • it has 1 weapon, 2 module slots
  • it has a 12% power bonus
  • it generates 2.10 basic power

now i equip it with a rocket launcher. the only engine i can equip without additional power needed is engine I, the fighter then has a speed of 3.50.
now i add a power generator I and have 5.46 power output. with an engine III i have 1.35 power left, and…oh wonder, the speed decreased to 2.67. not a good deal. with the increased price in mind, not a good deal at all.

and a basic design like laser cannon + engine I + power generator I is possible with the federation hawk fighter aswell, which doesn’t provide powerbonus.



Oddly enough I don’t see this as power boosts in fighters being useless. I see this as current power boosts in fighters being useless. Raise the base power output of the ballista by (who knows?) and you might have a laser fighter that doesn’t need a power plant. Just sayin’.



yes, raising basic power output as a bonus would be nice. or maybe just decreasing the weight impact of a generator.

i didn’t mean power boost on a fighter is generally useless, but i thought it was quite obvious that we are discussing the situation as it is currently.
and with a bonus of 12% from the alerady low output of a fighter generator, it is as i described, either too low so it doesn’t matter, or you have so much remaining power that it doens’t matter either.