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ships_hacs

CCP Fozzie seems to be the hardest working Dev at CCP Games. Or at least the most open and sociable. Here is something which will surely keep some peps busy for the rest of the week.

We’ve got the resources all properly committed so I’m now ready to share with you all our initial plan to fix some of the biggest problems that face armor tanking in this game. Sorry for the extended period of teasing, hopefully the happy ending will make it all worthwhile.

I was going to go into this big spiel about all the problems with armor tanking in general and active armor tanking in particular, but you all know this so I’ll jump straight to the interesting bits.

Here’s what we’re looking for feedback on:

Armor Rigs

New rig called the Nanobot Overcharger that increased the overheat bonus on your local armor reps by 30% (40% for T2). So with one of the T1 rigs overheating gives the rep 13% more rep amount and 19.5% faster rate of fire instead of the default 10% and 15% respectively. This effect is stacking penalized and gives no bonus when the reps are not overheated. Same calibration and build costs as a Aux Nano or Nanobot Acc rig.
Change the penalty on all active armor rigs (Aux Nano Pump, Nanobot Accelerator, and the new Nanobot Overcharger) to increase the powergrid use of local armor reps by 10% instead of reducing ship velocity.

Plates

Add a new skill to the game called Armor Upgrades. This skill reduces the mass penalty of all armor plates by 5% per level. (Int/Mem, rank 3, requires Mechanics 3) This skill affects all plates and is unconnected to the stat change listed below.
Reduce the base mass penalty on all 800mm, 200mm and 50mm plates by 20%

Ancillary Armor Repairer

Not the same mechanic as the ASB, please read to the end.
Always uses the same cap as a normal (T1/T2/Named) Armor Repper
When not loaded with a cap booster, has 3/4 the rep amount as a T1 Armor Repairer
Loaded cap boosters triple rep amount (so reps 2.25x a T1 repairer when loaded)

Same cycle time as T1 reps

Same capacity, charge restrictions and reload time as an ASB, but the longer cycle time of armor reps means it goes longer between reloads
Limited to one per ship

Quick Q&A about the AAR:

Why limited to one per ship?
The longer time between reloads is a big part of the playstyle we wanted to give the AAR, but that with multiple copies would completely negate the burst tanking ideal. In addition, there is more of a tradition of lowslot tanking modules restricted to one per ship so I made the call that in this case the restriction would be worthwhile. The ASB debate is a separate issue unconnected. Please note that nothing is preventing current dual or triple rep fits from swapping one of their reps into an AAR.

Why keep the cap use consistent?
The elimination of cap consumption when loaded is a huge advantage of ASBs, but we decided with the AAR to build the strengths in another direction, focusing on greater stability instead. In addition, one downside of the ASB’s zero cap use is the inability of one player to influence the tank of another through neuts. This works ok for the ASB but I am not inclined to expand that mechanic further.

Why not just buff all armor reps?
One of the aspects I really like about the ASB is that it allowed CCP to decouple burst tanking from sustained tanking in a new and interesting way. Burst tanking is key for most PVP active tank scenarios while sustained tanking is more common for PVE. We wanted to carry that aspect over to armor tanking, allowing us to create new burst tanking gameplay without making current sustained tanking gameplay overpowered.

So we are very interested in hearing your feedback on this proposal. Expect at least most of these changes to make it into the next Sisi build for playtesting (the AARs might not catch this upcoming build but they should at least be in the one after that).

[Original Dev Post]

– R

Send us Intel/Corrections via dropbox or shoot us an e-mail

5 Comments

  1. Satan

    Still does not change the fact that armor tanking is inferior to shields. The ability to tank and gank is a huge bonus.

    IE>We need mid slot damage/tracking/dcu/etc…

    January 21, 2013 at 4:34 pm Reply
  2. Ashesofempires

    Without posting up a massive essay on why these changes are marginally beneficial, and why armor tanking in general and active tanking in particular are inferior to shield tanking, i'll say that the new rig is shit, and the AAR Q&A reads like CCP learned from their mistakes with the ASB but didn't bother to fix it at the same time.

    January 21, 2013 at 9:29 pm Reply
  3. nc.

    Yea you're wrong. An armor cane will out tank a shield one np. Same with a harb. The only real adv shields has is it's gtfo ability. Learn to use shit correctly.

    January 22, 2013 at 8:39 am Reply
  4. Ashesofempires

    1. They are marginally beneficial, but I doubt there's much beyond this for armor tanking. Small steps in CCP's world typically mean that they leave their work unfinished.

    2. Armor tanking is roughly on par with shields, until you look at the low slot modules that also support shield tanking, like the Power Diagnostic System. Also, take a look at active armor tanking. Let's look at BS modules: XL shield boost II: 600 repair per cycle, 5 second cycle time. LAR II: 800 repair, 15 second cycle. In the same amount of time, the XL shield boost has repaired 1k more HP than the LAR II. It has also used 800 more cap. Now, add a Shield Boost Amplifier: 816 repaired per cycle, same cost. 2448 in 15 seconds, 1200 cap used. Add a 2nd LAR II: 1600 repaired, 15 seconds, 800 cap used. Add a third LAR II, 2400 repaired, 15 seconds, 1200 cap used. Three modules to do what two are capable of. Look at the fitting requirements for an XL Boost II and SBA II: 285 CPU and 551 PG. Three LAR II consume 6900 PG and 165 CPU. Tell me that is balanced, and I'll ask you where you get your crack from. It takes less slots to build an active shield tank than active armor, and it's easier to power as well, because you can use PDS II's alongside fitting mods in low slots to help offset part of the cost of running the XLSB II, and get EHP out of it. On the other hand, using close to 7000 PG on an active tank doesn't leave much room for guns on a lot of BS hulls, and 3 low slots consumed for active tanking doesn't leave a lot of room for both resist mods and the fitting mods it will take to wedge decent guns on a BS platform, never mind the fact that in order to support those 3 LAR's you will have to have a couple of heavy cap boosters, which also consume roughly 3500 PG. The AAR helps in this situation, sort of. It allows you to drop 2 LAR II's and a heavy cap booster, and save about 6k PG and about 150 CPU, but once the cap charges are empty you have 60 seconds of single LAR II to keep you alive.

    There isn't much need to test the new rig. 3% more repair and 4.5% faster cycle time, only while overloading, for a 5-10% PG penalty, is utter shit. In comparison, one could fit an Auxiliary Nano Pump for 15% more repair and the same penalty, and the rig is always going to provide a bonus. There are times when you don't want to overheat, or times when it's not necessary.

    January 22, 2013 at 3:16 pm Reply
  5. masterochi

    Methinks the pirate fleets are going to love this. Low Sec is going generate a lot of sales for these. It is a shame that cap charges are available at trade hubs, but not muchwhere else.

    January 23, 2013 at 4:07 pm Reply

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