Greedy Goblin

Friday, July 6, 2012

Scout checklist

The logistics checklist was one of the posts where I gained much more than the readers. And a good goblin always return to the place of getting something. So here I am again, crowdsourcing my scout.

Her job is to support my null/WH life with finding gatecamps, scanning down signatures, wormholes, baddies and also by lighting cynos. She will fly two ships. The first is the Buzzard, a cloaky ship with bonus to scanning:

Update: forgot bubbles. Warpstabs out, inertia stabilizer and damage control in.
The idea is traveling cloaked. If cloak is compromised: hoping that the warp disrupting ships don't have enough points to stop warp and the DPS ships don't have enough alpha/lock time to break the tank of the overheated med slots. If they do, well, the Buzzard pollution of New Eden decreases by 1.

Since Buzzards can't have cynos, I will simply use a Manticore with T1 modules for that.

She has +3 implants and learns the following skills to level 5:
  • Astrometrics
  • Caldari Frigate
  • Electronics
  • Electronics Upgrades
  • Engineering
Level 4:
  • Afterburners
  • Astrometric Pinpointing
  • Astrometric Rangefinding
  • Cloaking
  • High speed maneuvering
  • Covert Ops
  • Science
  • Warp Drive Operation
Level 3:
  • Astrometric Acquisition
  • Cynosural Field Theory
  • Energy Management
  • Evasive Maneuvering
  • Fuel conservation
  • Mechanics
  • Navigation
  • Shield Management
  • Shield Upgrades
  • Spaceship Command
  • Tactical Shield Manipulation
  • Thermodynamics
Comment, discuss, let's find the most efficient plan for a cheap scout. Again, I know that lvl 5 is better than 4 and 4 is better than 3. But remember, falling short means losing a cheap-fit cheap ship while learning 1.7M skills costs a PLEX (as the alternative of stopping my main for a long time is another account).

Friday morning report: 85.9B (1.5B spent on main accounts, 1.3 spent on logi, 1.0 on Ragnarok, 0.5 on Rorqual, 0.9 on Nyx, 0.8 on Avatar, 2.6B received as gift).


Serpentine Logic said...

You'll need another skill at V to use Combat Scanner probes or Deep Space Scanner probes.

Also, non-Caldari ships have more low slots,so you can fit a micro auxiliary power core. This will give you enough power grid for a propulsion module and/or medium shield extender.

Larofeticus said...

Warp core stabs are the wrong way to go here. If you've been caught by a fleet you're probably in a bubble and they do you no good. Nanofibers have more utility in a general sense, as far as travel time, and also in the specific case where you land in a bubble and have a bit more speed to cloak, avoid decloak attempts, and get out of the the bubble.

Anonymous said...

as a fellow Buzzard/falcon pilot I would recommend the following:

Lose the warp core stabs - they won't help against bubbles - swap them out for nanofiber internal structures.
you can warp cloaked - therefore if you get caught you're doing it wrong. use the mircowarpdrive/cloak trick to get out of bubbles. (get a buddy in a hic to give you practice, this is one of those things where you do actually need to practice the mechnaical skill)

since you can afford it, fit the sisters probe launcher, it gives a bonus to scanning strength even though it will double the cost of your ship

MICROWARP DRIVE: you will need this, trust us, even if you have to sacrifice tank - your "tank" is your cloak.

get your navigation up - speed is important.

bottom line: scouts are just eyes, getting everything to five BEFORE going into null is NOT IMPORTANT.

you should obviously be working on these skills after you reach null however.

as for the tengu, I can't really comment but my intuition says that fitting needs a lot more thought. Yes, you will lose a subsystem skill rank. of note: tengu fleets require the subsystem skills to be at V for reimbursal (I'm not commenting on this one because my alliance doesn't reimburse tengus so I don't fly them).

Gevlon said...

So astrometrics skill to 5 for deep space probes and also lose the warpstabs. Totally forgot the bubbles.

The tengu is only for lighting a cyno and living long enough to keep it lit It doesn't want to fight anything.

Alkarasu said...

Yes, it's true, you lose one level of subsystem skill each time your t3 gets it. But they are x1 skills, so you can train it back pretty easily (4 days in much-less-then-perfect remap), and they do provide HUGE bonuses, so if you really intend to fly t3, lvl5 subsystems is a must. Well, that if you really want that 1200 tank to work (by the way, as it's "All lvl5" you are using for reference, you may find that it'll take about a year to train your real character to that point).
One thing, though. Cyno ship is a ship lost. The only thing it needs is to get to the point, then, if there are anyone alive in the system it lights up, it will be killed (unless it's bridging in big fleet, in wich case it still most likely will be blown up to prevent reinforcements from jumping in). It can't tank while cyno is lit, it can't run, you can't even eject from it. Do you really intend to use a 350kk Tengu for that job? As there are loads of covert ops ships, that will do the job as good, will cost 10% of that, will take 5% of the time to train, and was designed with penetrating gatecamps in mind.

Steel H. said...

For a cloacky / scouty cyno strategic cruiser that doesn't want to be caught in 0.0/wspace, always fit the interdiction nulifier subsystem. It's one of the most powerful and annoying (to the enemy) mods in the game.

Alkarasu said...

"The tengu is only for lighting a cyno and living long enough to keep it lit It doesn't want to fight anything."
Usially the moment you light it up is the moment you jump (and, if you jump alone, you pray to warp away fast enough to evade any happy cap popper gang, that will come to your cyno). So tank on cyno is irrevelant, jump takes only a few seconds. And an active tank, as in your design, is simply insane, as no modules would activate on cyno ship.

Anonymous said...

Lighting a cyno will leave your ship stuck in place for a minimum of 5 minutes and also pain a big red bullseye on your ass by means of making the cyno a warp able object on the overview of every player in system.

That said, using a tengu to light a cyno just gives the locals something expensive to shoot at and there is nothing you can do to stop them.

Better to get a cheap frigate to use for cyno's, that way once you are done with the cyno you just eject and leave the cheap ship there to die or be stolen. pop the cyno, jump as soon as it is popped before anything can warp to you and get the cap safe.

Also what you have read about the skill loss when your T3 cruiser goes pop is true, better to not get killed in one.

Gevlon said...

So tanking cyno ship is stupid. Got it. Tengu plan out of the window. I will simply use a manticore.

Setsune Rin said...

for cyno ships you use t1 frigates, they WILL die
a cyno puts a beacon on the systems overview and you'll be stuck in your shield tanked tengu for the duration of it

its better to lose the ship, dock up along your carrier and grab one of the spares you had in your hold then it is to lose a tengu and a carrier because you agressed to rep it

and yes, you lose a subsystem skill if you pop a tengu, can be avoided by ejecting at the last second

also, dont warp stab ships that have guns
it gives a 45% locking range penalty
for a buzzard your better off with some inertia stabs or see if you can toss a micro power core on it and fit a cyno

[Buzzard, New Setup 1]
Micro Auxiliary Power Core I
Expanded Cargohold II

Adaptive Invulnerability Field II
Small Shield Extender II
[empty med slot]
[empty med slot]
[empty med slot]

Cynosural Field Generator I
Expanded Probe Launcher II, Core Scanner Probe I
Covert Ops Cloaking Device II

Small Gravity Capacitor Upgrade I
Small Gravity Capacitor Upgrade I

something like this
dont bother tanking it to much, if it gets hit it pops anyway

Anonymous said...

At the risk of sounding a fool, but since when can't buzzards have cynos.

Anonymous said...

Astrometics aquisition to IV especially if you plan on doing wormholes.

Scanning is a mind numblingly boring yet utterly essential part of wormhole life. The less time you can spend doing it, the better - the extra 10% reduction especially when you start trying to find your way through a rediculous hell chain will add up to a not insignificant time saving over the course of your career.

You can be a reasonably productive scanner once you've got the astrometrics support skills to III, but you should aim to get them all to IV shortly after you've done all the other stuff. The difference is noticable.

absolutely get the sisters probe launcher and sisters probes (+ spares. I tend to use combats and cores most of the time), especially if you are being "cheap" on the skills.

There some 'pilot' skills for scanning which are worth getting across - drop combats outside of dscan range once you've dscanned a rough area for your prey's location, use signature strength and some maths to figure out what the likely type of signatures are (very useful if you are just hunting wormholes and couldn't care about ladars), as well as some techniques for maximizing scan effeciency by sweeping planets and grabbing signatures in bulk. But you're a smart guy you'll figure that stuff out.

Alkarasu said...

@07:57 Anonymous
" that way once you are done with the cyno you just eject and leave the cheap ship there"

...only you can't eject with cyno lit, so you'll have to wait for it to expire, or for somebody to pop it.

Gevlon said...

@Anonymous: Since I'll remain in Int/Mem remap, I can learn it later if it worth the time.

@Other anonymous: since they have 18.7 powergrid and Cyno needs 20

Alkarasu said...

"since they have 18.7 powergrid and Cyno needs 20"

Powergrid can be expanded by modules and skills.

Sega said...

I use a cyno on my Buzzard all the time. That way I dont have to switch ships. Just fit a power core and you can use it.

Since I use my scout as a full time scanner for my main, I also have a salvager, code breaker and hacker fitted. Saves me the mids on the combat ship. I know you're not planning on fighting with it, just illustrating the point that a Buzzard can be pretty versatile.

Avensys said...

As has been pointed out above, tank and warp core stabs are the wrong idea - MWD is mandatory.

The Buzzard can of course light cynos - the problem is that it is not cheap (but the manticore isn't cheap either) and your cyno ships will die often.
Why not just use a Kestrel/Probe with only a cyno and a MWD fitted?

Here's how I'd fit a Buzzard:

[Buzzard, Buzzard]
Micro Auxiliary Power Core I
Nanofiber Internal Structure II

Limited 1MN MicroWarpdrive I
Warp Disruptor II
Cap Recharger II
Cap Recharger II
[empty med slot]

Sisters Expanded Probe Launcher, Sisters Combat Scanner Probe I
Cynosural Field Generator I
Covert Ops Cloaking Device II

Small Gravity Capacitor Upgrade I
Small Gravity Capacitor Upgrade I

they cyno is offline, if you need it offline the MWD and bring the cyno online.

Avensys said...

actually you can put a Micro Capacitor Battery into the empty mid slot in the fitting I posted above, forgot about that.

Anonymous said...

Cynos: buzzards can have cynos. every ship can. the buzzard can even fit a covert cyno.

shield extenders: wtf? they barely give more hitpoints and *enlargen the signature* something you totally want to prevent.

tank at all: forget the idea of having tanking mods on your buzzard, there is no point, even with your fit it wont survive more than a volley. its not worth tanking it, you are gimping the ship by doing it.

how to travel:
get a microwarpdrive.
you can allways cloak, but when you end up jumping to a bubble what you want todo is: doubleclick, fire mwd, fire cloak. this way you will a) get out of the bubble b) prevent people from decloaking you by not being where they fly to.

+1 for avensys fit

Hivemind said...

Avensys beat me to it with the Cynoing Buzzard fit (and his is actually better than mine, I'd planned on keeping the Cyno online permanently, which needs 2x MAPCs). You should note that his fit also upgrades the probe launcher from Core Probe to Expanded Probe (and from T2 to Faction). The Expanded Probe Launcher is vital for launching Combat or Deep Space scan probes, which are rather useful (I'm surprised you didn't notice that EFT doesn't give you the option to load Combat/DS probes in the Core launcher). Sadly it also takes up most of the Buzzard's CPU meaning you can't mount anywhere near the level of tank you were looking at.

Using a CovOps as a cyno is a useful trick when you need to light a beacon in hostile territory that you couldn't reliably get to in a non-cloaky ship, but for day-to-day usage it's far more cost-effective to use throwaway T1 frigates (hull, cyno, one shot of liquid ozone in cargo) because most of the time you will lose cyno ships unless you're lighting them in friendly space. When using the Buzzard for cynoing you should strip off the probe launcher - it's not going to help you, it will make you an even more attractive target and it's an expensive module to throw away if there's no need to risk it.

Finally if you really want a Cyno ship that stands a chance of surviving the activation duration, you should look into Recons - Field Recons like the Falcon have a 50% reduced Cyno duration meaning they aren't sitting ducks for as long (5 minutes instead of 10) and loaded with ECM they can potentially jam any solo pilots or very small gangs looking for an easy kill. The downside is they're still a lot more expensive than a disposable frigate and they're far from invulnerable, but they are a lot cheaper than a Tengu.

Fade Toblack said...

LOL at tank on Buzzard. It's 5400EHP - so still one volley for any reasonably sized ship!

Cloaky + Agility + Speed is your tank, whilst some resists may sound useful, realistically if something has you locked to fire weapons at you, you're effectively dead at that point.

Also you're a cloaky scout, if you can't probe out ships at safe spots then you're only doing half the job - so get an Expanded Probe Launcher on there.

Finally a Warp Disruptor to hold a target is probably more useful to the fleet.

Anonymous said...


My comments are mostly on the exploration part of the fit:

#1 Astrometrics to level 5 is required only if you need to use deep space probes (DSP) (256 AU), in order to a) Locate ships in "deep safes" - if they exist anymore - b) Classify signatures in one scan, using 1 DSP. If you do not need to use DSPs, downgrade Astrometrics to level 4. 7 combat / core probes is more than sufficient. Wormhole signatures are very strong. I cannot think of a situation where you need all 8 probes, unless it is a very-very faint gravimetric site.

#2 I would upgrade covert ops skill to level 5. Not for scouting operations, but more for exploration all-in-one-ship fits you might want to try in the future. E.g. Pilgrim. If you plan to use expanded probe launchers (with combat probes) to locate ships / POS etc, you *may* have power / CPU fit problems. I am not sure (maybe someone else can comment on this fitting expanded probe launcher + CovOps cloak with lvl 4 - cannot test it, since I am at work).

Lastly CovOps to 5 will boost probe strength to maximum, as per the racial CovOps frigate bonus, so it is another reason to downgrade Astrometrics to lvl 4. (see point #1)

#3 I would downgrade the cloaking skill to level 3. I do not remember if level 4 is a prerequisite for another skill though.

#4 Perhaps you could downgrade Afterburners too to level 3. I cannot think of a situation you will need to have equipped both an afterburner and a MWD. Same for fuel conservation. Although downgrading to level 2 from level 3 has marginal training time savings.

Hope these help.

Werner Kaladan

Anonymous said...

Just to add about the cyno ship discussion.

You are lighting a cyno, it will be visible on the map, it will be visible on the overview for everyone is space.

You are basically standing there with a galaxy sized loudspeaker shouting "Hey guys, there's a ship over here doing nothing for the next 10 minutes!"

t1 scan frig, cyno in the top slot, enough fuel for one cyno. Job done. Preferably with throw away cyno alt so the pod won't cost you anything either.

Anonymous said...

@Last anon: I don't see how covert ops 5 will help a pilgrim but I still agree that training it to 5 is a good idea. Makes a world of difference in fitting those damn covops. Also, cloaking 4 is a prereq for fitting the covert ops cloak so kind of a must have

Anonymous said...

You want a *cheap* scout?

Easy, specializing:

-- Initial Skills --
Gunnery II
Small Turret III
Mining II
Mechanics II
Navigation III
Science III
Spaceship Command III

=> 36.245 SP

-- Cyno Skills ---
Electronics V
Cynosural Field Theory IV (== 300 Ozone per Cyno -> Fits in Noob ships(!)
Engineering III
Energy Management II (For a Power core)
Amarr Frigatte III
Caldari Frigatte III
Gallente Frigatte III
Minmatar Frigatte III

=> 542.518 SP

-- Utility Skills --
Infomorph Psychology IV
Hull Upgrades II (Cargohold expanders)
Afterburner III
High Speed Maneuvering I
Cloaking I (Prototype Cloak)
Propulsion Jamming I
Evasive Maneuvering III
Corporation Management I (Create Corps with HQ at station. You can always medclone jump to your Corp HQ)

=> 75.834 SP

-- Trade Skills --
Accounting IV
Broker Relations IV
Retail III
Trade IV

=> 213.020 SP

==> 885.282 SP

Voila! A Cyno alt that can use noob ships and all T1 Frigattes to light cynos, less than 900.000 SP, so no medclones, jump clone ability, and can also web freighters for instawarp. Oh, and be used as a trader, too.

Wanna upgrade? Train other stuff up to a total of 1.028.000 SP, and then get podded. You'll lose Electronics V but you will still be able to light Cynos.

Chris said...

Gevlin, please fit a microwarp drive on your buzzard. That is how you avoid bubbles! If you need more powergrid, I would recommend dropping the DCU for an Auxiliary Power Controls, you may also be able to fit 1x medium shield extender instead of the 2x smalls.

Since you align quickly as a buzzard, i believe you should drop the intertia stabalizers for nanofiber internal structures. The align speed difference is very small, you will go a little faster, and nanofibers will only drop some of your measely structure for being targeted slower. interia stabalizers increase your signature radius, making your buzzard take more damage and targeted faster.

NP said...

+1 to "don't tank a cloaky-scout" -- cloak + agility/speed are your tank

+1 to "stabs?"

+1 to "always fit a MWD to cloaky-scout" -- MWD+cloak lets you burn away fast enough to not be decloaked before warp by that Claw zooming to your last position. Plus, the MWD speeds the process of making tactical bookmarks

+1 to Expanded Probe Launcher -- or is this for PVE only?

Fit a point. It'll be a "hero tackle," for certain, but your fleet will love you when you're able to hold that carrier from warping before the Arazu comes on grid.

Reconsider Astrometrics V. DSPs only real use is this:
Its a fun party trick, but you should be scanning everything to 100%, regardless.

Lastly - you need DScan V... practice, practice, practice! If you're combat scanning a good opponent, they will see when you drop probes and warp off (or reship to PVP if you're ganking site runners in WH). The goal is to get the punt within seconds of dropping your probe. You do that by narrowing their position down on DScan so you can 1AU your probe. "DScan V" is the most important support for combat scanning IMHO

Anonymous said...

1) - Scouts use a cloak/speed tank... ditch the shield tank

2) - if you're going to shield tank, plug that EM hole! Drop the third Invulnerability Field for an EM Ward... maybe even two.

But no, don't shield tank a scout!

Anonymous said...

I'm glad you put this up. I've been working on a really dirt simple version of a scout that can be started in a couple of days and grow into a covops with a covert cyno. Its good to see others' opinions of what works and what doesn't.

Anonymous said...

@ 2 Anonymous before

The Pilgrim is a force recon, that can fit cover ops cloak. I mentioned this ship as an all-in-one exploration vessel, as a side note.

After Cover ops frigates, the next logical step is probably Force Recon cruiser. All four ships of this category benefit a lot fit-wise from CovOps 5. So, that's why I mentioned it.

Werner Kaladan

Anonymous said...

Hit self destruct, wait until ~15 seconds left, hit cyno, jump?