Sunday, March 18, 2012

Tackling / Scout / Fleet Interceptor 101

By: Babylelin
Pwned Factor Graduate (& Pro Tackler)

Ok, so you want to fly a fleet interceptor in the role of a tackler, scout, or secondary / tertiary tackler. First things first, refer to the fitting forum and pick one of the fleet interceptor fits (Ares, Stiletto, Raptor, Malediction). The reason i pick these ships is very simple, the bonuses for these four ships is perfectly suited for the above roles. Each of those ships gets a bonus to disruptor range (up to 30km with ceptor V) and a bonus to MWD sig radius. Both of these bonuses combine give you the ability to survive while holding a point against just about any ship in the game.

Tackling / Fleet Interceptor 101
First and foremost, your job is to survive. Now, there is a time and a place for holding a point until you explode...but in most cases you are way more beneficial to your fleet if you dont die. So when in doubt, drop your point and get out alive.
With the above being said, your flying your shiny interceptor with its long point. There are a number of situations where you will be asked to get and hold a point on a target. I'll go through each of these.

Target is X distance from the gate

So you just jumped through a gate and you see a target sitting 50km off of the gate. Your FC tells you to call point. Your first instinct is going to be to press the "Approach" button and then press the "orbit" button once in range. This will work in some cases, however against a smart pilot, there is a good chance your going to wind up in a pod before your fleet even has a chance to do anything. Instead, what you want to do, is click in space a few inches (or centimeters) to the side of your target (as you get better, you can judge where to click to wind up passing just inside your point range) and burn towards that spot. The idea being your not burning directly at him, and thus your transversal will allow you to not take much damage on the way in.
So you've clicked to the side of your target and burned towards him, now, right before your going to pass him...THIS is when you click your orbit button and apply your disruptor to the target (i'll talk about what distance to orbit in a moment). What this does is make your ship spiral into an orbit onto the target, and keeps you from ever burning directly at him. (refer to diagram if your confused)

You follow a target through a gate

So you just landed on a gate with a target and it jumped through the gate. You follow it through, and your FC instructs you to get point. Based on the targets ship, i would advise you to again burn to the side either away or towards the target and again click your orbit button when you are about to pass the target.

Setting Orbit

Setting your default orbit is something that is going to change based on the ship that your tackling. Though in most cases, if your not tackling a frigate you can set your default orbit to 22km-23km (which with your MWD active will swing your orbit just outside 25km which is heavy neut range...but inside your 28.8KM point range. If you ARE tackling a frigate then i'd go with a 500 orbit. The reasoning behind these distances is that having your orbit set outside of 25KM keeps you outside of neut range (of most neuts) and also gives you the best oppurtunity to avoid damage, or escape if you need to). Against a frigate, your not all that likely to have the chance to both hold point AND escape...500 lets you hold point. You'll have to rely on your fleet to kill it before it kills you.

Secondary / Tertiary tackler

You have one of the most laid back, yet important jobs in the fleet. You and the other tacklers in the fleet have to learn to listen to the "POINT" calls that are coming from the other tacklers. So once one target has been pointed by 1 or 2 people, you need to be picking a NEW target and calling point on IT(preferably whatever the FC calls as secondary, or tertiary). If the FC says "spread points" then you need to make a determination and figure out what you can get a point on quickly...adjust your orbit to that ship and call point as soon as possible. If someone else calls point on that ship, then you need to go to your next closest target, and so on. You need to be flexible here. Having 2 interceptors tackling the same ship and not tackling another ship doesnt make much sense. When you DO get point on a ship, your reporting statement should be "name > point > target name". If you happen to die, you need to type in chat "dead, no point on > targets name" or something similiar.


Scouting is the 2nd most critical job in the fleet after the FC (maybe even more important). So you need to make sure the information your giving is short, sweet, and ACCURATE. When you jump through a gate, the BASE amount of information you MUST give you FC is: Number in local, What is on the gate with you, what is on DSCAN. If there are ships on the gate with you, you need to relay WHAT KINDS OF SHIPS, numbers, and whether or not they are at ZERO on the gate, or if they are at range. REMEMBER, when you jump through a gate you are 12-13KM from the gate, so take that into account when you report your findings the FC. If a system has drag / screen bubbles in it, you need to advise the FC, and if needed provide the fleet a warp in.

Additionally, ANY TIME YOU TALK you need to PREFACE what your saying with: who you are, where you are, and what you want to say". For example, "Babylelin in OTK has 3 drakes at zero on the 3-f gate" This tells the FC exactly what they need to know, and who to give instructions to in order to get further intel.

This is by no means a comprehensive guide, and perhaps i will write a 201 version of this guide. This should get people started on the right path though. If you have any questions you can ask them here, or convo me in game.

Hard Targets:
There is something to be said about specific ships which will give fleet interceptors a hard time. The obvious ones are ECM ships (falcon, blackbird, scorpion, kitsune). These ships are really not able to be held in place with a single tackler...unless they are either very new, or very bad. THough they areant particularly dangerous to you either.

Curse: This ship will give you absolute FITS, it gets a bonus to both neut range and drain amount, and has very high drone damage. This is a ship that absolutely REQUIRES more then one tackler. Going for a solo tackle on this ship is not something i'd advise unless you know your fleet is going to be with you very soon. The curse will neut your cap try in one cycle then either warp off...or kill you with its drones while your dead in the water.

Vagabond / Cynabal / Hurricane: These ships are tough because they are fast, and carry neuts. The vagabond / cynabal you will be able to stay outside their neuts for the most part, but holding them close enough to your gang will be a problem with just a disruptor. I'd recommond holding a disruptor on them till they are getting low shields...then moving in for the scram. You only have to hold the scram long enough to keep them from overheating MWD and leaving the field. I wouldnt recommend burning out to these ships though..chasing them is what they want.
I listed the hurricane here because it is another ship that if flown intelligently will cut through tacklers very quickly. This is a ship to be very careful about staying out of its neuts!
Heavy Neut Battleships: (Tempest, Megathron, Armageddon to name a few) These are the kinds of ships you need to make sure you are staying outside of 25KM. One cycle from their heavy neut will leave you completely without cap, and thus VERY vulnerable to being killed. If you are successful at staying outside of their neuts, you shouldnt have any trouble with their guns DPS...the only thing to look out for beyond neuts are pay attention to your HP.

Faction Battleships: The main Faction BS that you will encounter that will give you lots of trouble is the Machariel. It is very fast(for a bs), has extremely high DPS(it can hit out to 70km with autocannons FFS), a fantastic tank, and carries a heavy neut. This is another ship that i would NOT recommend trying to tackle solo. Holding point outside of 25km from this ship is VERY hard...with its high speed it is very difficult to not slingshot into neut range...on top of the fact that this ship is likely to burn away from your fleet if you dont put a scrambler on it. I certainly dont have all the answers to holding a mach on the field...but recon ships are better suited for the job IMO....a fleet interceptor is going to get worked pretty hard

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