The State of Defence - A beginners guide...

Still, would have been a very cool concept if we could have gotten a leaky shield (maybe 1 in 4 or 1 in 3 down) plus armor tank (maybe armor in the high 40s to negate most missiles + repair module) to work.


Great guide.

I am confused about something.

I did the following (as recomended). Took a Cruiser (Fed Panther) and put 5 Ultra Heavy Armor on it… nothing else. Placed it into the tutorial. The ship survived until the game decided to call a defeat… But the ship was still intact. Good Good…

I then put a few modules on it (power generator and crew)… blam… the ship was destroyed.

Reading the thread it says … how would adding modules cause the average armor value to drop? How is that calculated?


The combined armor value of the armor is divided by the number of filled modual slots.
When you added moduals you reduced the average armor value to less than the penetration ability of the enemy weapons.

Since armor has a diminishing returns, there are only a few ships that can armor to 73 and have an engine, a weapon, and a repair system. The fed Tiger (iirc) can, and is also longer than the panther, so it can hold aggro.

I see a couple philosophies in regards to the first row of ships.

  1. They are entirely for drawing fire. They will have 1 weapon and MAYBE a disruptor beam, the rest armor.
  2. They will have armor sufficient to repel laser fighters and perhaps repair, but their primary defense is shields, as the front line is intended to do most of the damage
  3. Tribe front row ships can have minimal defenses. Maybe A shield generator to prevent them from getting quickly shredded by beams.

Now, the fleets that rely on a lot of firepower in the front row can face issues if they have to close a long distance, as the battlelines compress, forcing some of the ships to move ahead of their row. Fleets where the front ships are just supposed to draw fire will often spread them out further, as the real firepower is behind the front row.

One thing I am experimenting with is the tank line having Plasma weapons for the purpose of busting shields down. Then the beam cruisers behind the front line shred them. I used to rely on the rear line ships with missiles or plasmas breaking the shields, but that seems to result in a lot of wasted beam power splashing on shields. With the tank line armed with plasmas, the first ship that enters range will have its shields battered down by the time the Vulture ordered beam cruisers enter range.

Cloaking devices seem to make the most sense in either decoy ships or in the tank line, both cases where the loss of the cloaking ship’s firepower is immaterial.

I think it is generally a mistake to put anti-fighter weaponry on the tank line (exception, tribe). That is because the ships that are good for tanking generally have few weapon’s modules, and if you are trying for 73 armor, you only have room for 1 or 2 weapons, and that could be at the expense of a repair system.

If you can make a tank line with a weapon, cloak, 70+ armor and a repair, then if you get lucky your tank will cloak after some of its armor is damaged, but before it would get shredded by the enemy blindly firing at the cloaked ship. Cloak and a heavy shield set up could also work, assuming there is something forcing a dispersal of firepower so again, ships don’t lose shields the instant they are targeted, or in small fights where pounding through shields will take multiple volleys.

There are about 5 basic approaches to fighter defenses:

  1. tractors + fast tracking beams. (or when facing slower fighters, just beams)
  2. painters +missiles or painters + rocket fighters
  3. frigates with anti-fighter missiles (and/or tractors)
  4. armor everything to 12+ so fighters can only do lucky shot damage and kill the enemy cruisers, ignoring the fighters
  5. decoy the fighters to the tougher targets, and close with the enemy fast, killing them before the fighters whittle you down

What works best depends on whether the fighters are flying free, or are tethered to their own fleet. If you are fighting the fighters while closing, every tractor means that your beam armed ships can freely fire at the fighters without concern over wasting their firepower which could be used against enemy capital ships. But if the enemy fighters are tethered, having ships who can dedicate their entire firepower to the fighters can be better, so you don’t waste cruiser defense laser shots against armor, or waste Cruiser Beam Lasers against fighters.

Armor resistances is reduced for each module on the ship. Therefore armor tank should have as little non armor module as possible.

The minimum amount of power needed are 8.4 (for decoy launcher/engine 1/nano repair). Therefore, any tank hull with power > 8.4 is significantly better than the ones without, as they can skip the power 1 entirely.

The best universal (73+) tanks are the one that

  1. Has Armor Bonus
  2. Initial Power > 8.4

Order Templar
Nomad Hareeb
Alliance Shark

Next we have

  1. Has Armor Bonus
  2. Initial Power < 8.4

Fed Tiger

Lastly we have

  1. No Armor Bonus
  2. Initial Power > 8.4

Imperial Praetorian

Tribe, Rebel, and Swarm cannot make universal armor tanks.

DO NOT PUT CLOAK ON TANKS!!! Not only would 2 extra modules (power + cloak) cost 5000+ EHP, they also stop drawing aggro when the are cloaked. (as they now consider harder to hit).