Saturday, 13 February 2016

Feedback on Jason Quixos' latest soloing post.

Jason wrote a somewhat frustrated post on his excellent blog. I started to write a comment then realised a) that I had too much to say and b) that a lot of people are interested in soloing and might find it useful to read his and my posts.

Some constructive criticism:

- first off, just having the balls to go out and try to solo is rare and awesome.

- don't worry about losing. Even the best soloers are usually under 50% on their killboards. Learning and improving is your goal as a soloer, challenging yourself so that you have to do  your best.

- join in-game channel Bringing Solo Back.

- you need to visualise the play. In sports athletes get taught how to do this. So for example a soccer player might imagine that to score a goal he might need to start his run late, get across his defender and glance the ball to the top of the goal at the far post. He won't always get it right but he's much more clear than someone who intends to just rush to the ball then slam it goalwards.

The reason I say this is that looking at the lossmail I'm thinking that there's a lack of a plan. Some of the modules suit a kitey plan, often referred to as "nano." It has railguns for long range, a long range point but what on earth in today's meta would take a fight with a Myrmidon but be slower than it? It's a slow ship with no nano and an armour plate. You won't be able to kite anything and your "kitey"modules are bad for brawling.

There are two basic plans in Eve solo pvp: brawl and kite. For brawling you take the short range weapon system (eg blasters), web, scram, mwd, then rush on top of someone, pin them in place then hope that your tank and gank numbers are bigger than theirs.

For kiting you want to be faster than them and never let a hostile get within 20km while killing them slowly from range.

The way you fit your ship should support your plan. Figure out the plan first, then the fit.

Here's a sample plan:

First you need to chose one of the archtypes or something out of the box entirely. We'll pick brawler.

We need to pick a ship. We'll go with Myrmidon, it's a strong ship at a low price and very engageable so you will get fights.

The ship has a drone bonus and an active armour rep bonus so we'll plan for that.

[Myrmidon, Brawler]

Damage Control II
Medium Armor Repairer II
Medium Armor Repairer II
Energized Adaptive Nano Membrane II
Energized Adaptive Nano Membrane II
Armor Explosive Hardener II

X5 Prototype Engine Enervator
X5 Prototype Engine Enervator
J5b Phased Prototype Warp Scrambler I
Medium Capacitor Booster II, Navy Cap Booster 800
50MN Quad LiF Restrained Microwarpdrive

Heavy Neutron Blaster II, Void M
Heavy Ion Blaster II, Void M
Heavy Ion Blaster II, Void M
Heavy Ion Blaster II, Void M
Heavy Ion Blaster II, Void M

Medium Auxiliary Nano Pump I
Medium Auxiliary Nano Pump I
Medium Nanobot Accelerator I

Ogre II x4 (active)
Ogre II x4 (spares)

Inherent Implants 'Noble' Repair Systems RS-603
Inherent Implants 'Noble' Repair Proficiency RP-903

Null M x1000
Void M x3000
Improved Exile Booster x2 (Standard is fine)
Caldari Navy Antimatter Charge M x1000
Nanite Repair Paste x100
Navy Cap Booster 800 x14

The fit I've designed uses double web and scram to pin someone in place and then outlasts them due to an extreme tank. Generally people will die to you when they make a mistake and the mistake we're planning for them to make is to underestimate your tank. With heat this thing tanks 1000 dps (all Vs, no links) so a small gang of 300 dps cruisers should be beatable. If they have 4 guys shooting you, once you get one down you can comfortably tank them. If they shoot you with explosive ammo - normally correct for an armour tanked ship - you can tank a lot more with overheated armour hardener.

The stats on this fit overheated are 691 dps, 1032 hp/sec repaired vs omni, 1585 hp/sec repaired vs explosive, 13km web range, 1636 m/s speed, price 109 million isk.

There is a lot of player skill required to really master this - heat management, cap management, drone management, target assessment. Fortunately a very low level of player skill is needed to get started. Approach, web, scram, set Keep at Range to the optimal of your guns and shoot them and put drones on them while repping yourself. Turn off your mwd once you have them tackled and try not to waste cap. It's reasonably powerful even without heat.

You can gain real advantage by fighting in favourable terrain which is this: less than 30km off a  stargate. Here's how a fight should go. You get spotted, hero tackle come in. Don't aggress, let them take the gate guns (if you're not a pirate). They will want to scram you because they'll be worried about you burning to the gate or MJDing. If they can scram you you can scram them back except for a few ships (lachesis, proteus, keres, Navy maulus). If you see these ships you may be best to just leave and find another fight.

Once you scram and web something most things are going to die unless they have logi. Logi is another reason to leave and look for a different fight.

You will probably kill something then see their numbers build up. If you think you have the raw stats to out-brawl them keep going, otherwise look to deaggress. If they've got you pinned away from the gate kill scrams, then webs while approaching the gate, deaggress once you are nearly close enough to jump, overheat reps and mash the gate until you jump. Against a confident gang there's nothing wrong with taking the fight at zero to the gate. Once you jump you have the option of fighting them on the other side when they'll be a little disorganised and perhaps you can kill one then deaggress and jump back through. Using the stargate to split their gang is a big advantage and helps you play around enemy links.

Try to assess how many people they will bring. It might be better to learn one constellation well rather than to roam. Where Stay Frosty live in Ishomilken might be a good place to gather intel. Gather intel simply by flying there in a frigate and seeing who's in Local and who's on D scan. Get  a feel for how they respond and what they bring. Stay Frosty for instance respond much less aggressively when Rixx isn't online.

 Where we live in Kinakka is normally good but we're not home at the moment. Hard University stage out of Kehjari and they'll probably bring a disorganised frigate blob to try and kill you. Which of course is awesome. Don't fight in staging systems and don't pick on strong alliances like Snuff Shadow or Bebop.

Nullsec entry systems like EC- or A2- are great places to try this too. Querious in particular is full of gangs of all sizes.

Good luck, I hope that's some help.

Fraps yourself and watch your fights afterwards to see how you could improve.


  1. when would you choose aar over common t2? never in this myrm?

    1. For burst. If I was flying this into 20 Brave cruisers then aar would buy me a few more seconds. Any fight you expect to be shorter than the time to run out of paste aar is better.

    2. I have to second Stabs' comment. AARs are good if a) you have at least a second rep, b) you have nano pumps in your rigs, and c) you expect to take on 1, perhaps 2 people, and think you can take them down before you face the need to reload.

  2. Thanks for the long post and advice. I have flown similar fit Myrms before but I actually think it is the ship hull. For me it is cursed. No matter how I have fit them or taken them to die, they always end up caught in a gate camp (as in this case) or me making more mistakes.

    For purposes of experimenting I shall build a few of these ships and try to sort out a bad fraps at some point. Watch my KB for any green at all lol.

    1. Gl, and remember red is the default state of a soloer's kb so any advance is progress.