Tag Archives: Training Plans

Boosters Must go to Five

One of the things I always shoot for is to be useful when it comes to fleet ops.

That started off with making sure I could fly ships appropriate to the fleet doctrines in use.  Way back when it was Maelstroms, then Drakes, then Tengus, then Megathrons, and then Dominxes for a short bit when drone assist ruled the world and crashed nodes.   More recently we have gone to Apocs.

There has been some catch up for me to do as things have changed.  I needed some training for the Maelstrom fit, but we were all shield tanks back then and I was pretty well covered on that front.  Later we changed to armor tanks and I had some training to do.  And weapons have changed along the way, missiles, arty, rails, and blasters have all shown up at one time or another.  Recently, with the Apocalypse fit, lasers finally made it back and I was able to train up there, closing what I think might be the last gap I had in gunnery.

Once caught up on the main ship of the current doctrine, I have tended to train some of the support ships, starting with logtistics.  While it is not a role I really enjoy flying… the pet peeves of a logistics pilot are manifold, and everybody loves logistics at exactly two moments during a fleet op, when we save their ass and when there are enough of us in fleet that the FC shuts up about not having enough logistics, otherwise we’re invisible… I fill in when we are short.   Having finally picked up Amarr cruiser V a few weeks back, which got me the Guardian, I can now fly the tech II logistics cruiser for all four empires and am pretty close to max skills there.

The Guardian!

The Guardian!

So what is next?

Boosting ships have recently been much in demand.

Well, they have always been in demand, but of late we seem to be very short on pilots willing and able to fly boosting ships, which run the warfare links that increase the performance of all the ships in their fleet wing.  But of late the situation has gotten a bit more desperate.  There is one FC paying people to fly booster ships in his fleet, while the other night Reagalan posted a lower skill boosting fit in fleet, asking people to fly that as it was better than nothing.

So I decided to take the plunge and start training up to fly a boosting ship.

The problem is that even Reagalan’s lower skill, battlecruiser based boosting fit required a lot of level 5 skills under leadership, which is a problem.

It is a problem for the obvious reason, in that level 5 skills take a long time to train, and it is a problem in that people tend to optimize their character attributes, which directly affect training time for skills, towards combat related skills.

Or at least I was so optimized.  I trained spaceship command or gunnery skills at a fast rate, at the expense of skills in categories like social, trade, or leadership.  But most of those fleet boosting skills… or most of the ones I am missing… those fall under leadership.  And they trained hella slow with my attributes set as such.  So I used my yearly attribute reset and… well, I couldn’t bring myself to optimize for leadership and such.  There was only eight months of training at the slow setting.  But I flattened out my attributes, so I am only optimized for mediocrity in whatever I train for the next year.

So the plan, listing out only the level 5 skills I need, is:

  • Warfare Link Specialist V (need that for the Command Processor)
  • Skirmish Warfare V
  • Skirmish Warfare Specialist V
  • Armored Warfare V
  • Armored Warfare Specialist V
  • Siege Warfare V
  • Siege Warfare  Specialist V
  • Wing Command V

That lot will take me 191 days in a clone without implants.  I will shave some time from that by spending off days in my high sec clone that is fitted with +4 implants.  And Wing Command V is icing.  I could shave 40 days off the plan by just skipping that, but I want that in the long term.  I will probably push it out some, as after I finish up the rest, I still have a bit of training on the ship side of things to firm up the fits.  One of them requires a Legion as the hull, which I cannot fly as yet, though I am covered for the Tengu and Loki fits.  And could get into command ships in a day, though I understand that is like flying with a giant “shoot me first” sign on the side of your hull.

So that is my training plan for the balance of the year, which will move along at 1,800 skill points an hour without implants.  That will push my 130 million skill point post out a bit, though not as far as it would have been pushed if I trained all that without any remap.

Still, that should give me enough time to figure out what to do with a boosting ship once I have all the skills.

Towards a Confederation of Dreadnoughts

It seems to be an unwritten rule of EVE Online that, once you have a training plan all nailed down and under way, something will come along to make you change it.

And then change it again.

I lucked out to a certain extent when I moved out to null sec space back in December 2011.  I showed up just in time for the CFC to start up the Drake fleet doctrine, a ship I was already exceptionally well skilled to fly.  I think I had all related skills to level IV or V at the outset and have since honed them up even more.  I have many a post here about flying with Drake fleet.

Some of us in a line

Happy Days in Drake Fleet

That luck gave me time to train up for logistics, so I was able to fly a Scimitar with Drake fleet or Alpha fleet.  I trained a little for Alpha fleet as well, but there was not much pressure because there was a tech 1 Megathron fit I could fly already.  So I could idly train whatever I wanted.

I got myself set for Tengu fleet, just in case.  I never actually flew the Tengu part, sticking to logistics there.  When Tech fleet came out as an armor tanked doctrine, I trained up that part of logistics as well.  I trained up Planetary Management, with the idea of setting up a bit of semi-passive income at some point.  I haven’t quite gotten there yet.

And then came the war in Fountain and the subsequent doctrine changes.  Drakes had been nerfed into oblivion by CCP, Tengu and Tech fleets were not holding up, so new plans were made.  Sure, I had Caracals covered when they were thrown in as a cheap stop-gap, and it doesn’t take much to fly a Celestis.  But when Batltec fleet was announced, and the mighty Megathron was the order of the day, I was a few skills shy.  I could fly logistics, but not the Megathron fit.  And while that was all of a day’s training, I was still at the very low end for armor tanking skills.  How I missed Drakes.

I have a lot of Megathron screen shots now

And then we added AHACs with lasers and Harpy fleet and I was clearly behind the times.

So about three weeks back I put together a plan in EVE Mon titled “Fly All the Subcaps!” and put in all the things that might ever get included in a future doctrine, training them  all up to level IV (or V when needed), giving me about a 200 day training plan.  You would think with 107 million skill points, I would be covered, but there are a lot of skills in EVE Online.  I biased the plan towards things that would help current doctrines first, so Armor Honeycombing was in there early, and set off training.

And then the fighting in Fountain ended and rumors started that we would be moving to Fountain.  Gaff poked me and suggested that it might be a good thing to train up to fly a carrier so as to be able to haul ships back and forth at need.  If we moved to Fountain, I had a pile of ships to move there, and if we didn’t, I had a pile to move back to Deklein.

That seemed like a plan just reasonable enough to blow up my previous plan.  And I had laid some groundwork for it during my aimless training time.  I had Jump Drive Operation up to V and Jump Drive Calibration to IV.  Flying a carrier… and I could chose any one, they were all equidistant… was just 19 days away.  So off I went on that plan, the Archon being my target.

Archon under fire

Not THAT kind of target!

And then, a week into that, with the Fountain fully taken, there was an Alliance Update that, among other things, assigned new training goals.  We were asked to max out sentry drones and work towards flying a dreadnought.  The plan is to abuse the “assign drones to the FC” mechanic (which did not work all that well for TEST at G95F or 6VDT) until CCP fixes it and to fling dreadnoughts at everything in future conflicts.

Since I was already at maximum skills for sentry drones (trained them years back and never really used them until now) I started looking at dreads.

I am equidistant in training time from 3 of the 4 dreadnoughts, though the Phoenix is out due to being unsuitable for a “blap dread” (a subcap shooting dreadnought) fit.  (Gaff, who owns a Phoenix, blames me for this, saying I told him to go Caldari back in 2007.) The Revelation is the furthest out of reach, as I am way behind in laser weaponry.  So the choice is between the Moros and the Naglfar.

The Moros seems to be the favored choice among many who purport to know best.  They certainly seem common.  They are a bit bulbous, looking a bit like Dabiggreenboat, to coin a phrase.

Moros Firing

Moros Firing at 3WE-KY

And then there is the smaller, but quite vocal Naglfar faction, whose primary arguments are that it uses no capacitor for its guns and looks damn cool with its vertical orientation.

Naglfars stand out among dreadnoughts

Fortunately, the work I started on for flying a carrier applies to dreadnoughts, and I have a bit of time to decide on which one to choose.

And I have to start working on earning some ISK.  This is going to cost.  The skills alone are pricy, and I haven’t even gotten a price on hulls and fittings yet.

Anyway, once I finish the dreadnought plan and then the carrier plan, I can get back to my subcap plan.  Unless something else comes up.

And something else always comes up.