Wednesday, 28 October 2015

Capital Escalations are dead. Long live Capital Escalations.

This post is made from 100% tin foil hats, and has a large dose of speculation. 

I have been looking at C5 capital escalations, using Jack Miton's 'Like a Baws' guide.

Jack also has a Carrier + Battleship guide at

I have run some sites on singularity with a corp member on the other side of the world, and really need to get organised to run them on live.  Sometimes real life gets in the way, and I am currently the junior partner (skillwise) in the C5 sites.

To run the sites, as I understand it:
  • Roll open wormholes.
  • Set up your booster ships (x2)
  • Triage Archon warps in (escalation 1)
  • Webbing, target painting Loki warps in, calls targets.
  • Siege armor dread warps in (escalation 2), blaps sleeper battleships for roughly 10K DPS, using anti structure guns (hence the need for webbing and target painting).  Things get hairy.
  • Once most battleships are down, warp in armor dread #2 (escalation 3) (and maybe a second webbing loki).  Blap stuff easily.
  • Warp in Carrier #2 (escalation 4).  Rush to kill something before the dreads do.
  • Maybe a ECM boat to keep a trigger alive but harmless. This allows a full site respawn (or so I have read - not confirmed yet).
  • Salvage and loot with Noctis and Mobile Tractor Unit, while the DPS wing goes to the next site.

If you fail, you will lose your fleet.  If your triage Archon disconnects, say good by to billions of ISK.  Sleepers remote repair each other, so high applied DPS matters.  The tricky point I found in the above method was the second escalation.  We want to get the number of sleepers down before the logi runs out of capacitor.

Assuming you want to keep the site alive, salvage this site while the DPS squad does the next site, then 5 pilots in a DPS squad, 3 ignored alts (Boosters and ECM), and a salvager.  Lets call it initially 10K DPS for dread #1, ramping up to 23K DPS by the time second dread and carrier land.  Including concurrent salvaging, this is moderately comfortable for 3 players with alts.

With the new capitals, there are some changes.

Firstly, it wont be a triage Archon landing, but one of the new Force Auxiliary capitals.  As a guess, it will be the Amarr one for increased armor resists.

The next question is what will be the preferred DPS platform vs battleships?  I have read that CCP want dreads to be the 'in your face' DPS ship, doing 2-3 times what a battleship does.  Different bloggers are suggesting 2k or maybe 3k DPS vs battleships.  In comparison, I am reading about (but do not yet fly) 1.5k DPS Vindicators.

However, another ratting carrier pilot I know claims 3k DPS with 13 fighters (and he doesn't have full skills yet).  So one of the following will happen.  Carriers will remain the preferred anti battleship platform, or dreads will do more than 3k, or carriers will be nerfed.

The siege armor dread won't be able to use an anti-cap gun, but will need to use a battleship gun.  Guesses suggest DPS in the 2-3k range, but ... will carriers do more?

Assuming that there will still be capital escalations, and that a force auxiliary escalates the site (neither a forgone conclusion), and that once I get 10K DPS on field with only 2 capitals, I can then smash the site out no problems, I still see something for the new capital escalation site running.

As a rough idea:
  • Roll open wormholes (no change).
  • Set up boosters (plural, no change).
  • Triage Force Auxillery warps in (little change). Will this escalate?
  • Probably the webbing Loki (webbing range still helps)
  • 3 Bling battleships to clear most of the first escalation.
  • Highest DPS vs battleship of armor carrier (probably Thanatos) or Dread
  • Capitals to complete escalations in turn.  (possibly by BS pilots swapping to capitals)
  • Maybe an ECM to keep the site alive (assuming this still works - I heard that CCP wanted to stop this)
  • Salvage and loot with a Noctis and MTU.
Assuming you can keep the site alive, salvage this site while the DPS squad does the next site, and swap 2 battleship pilots for capitals as the site progresses;  then it is 6 pilots for the DPS squad, 3 ignored alts (Boosters and ECM), and a salvager.  Lets call it initially 4K DPS, slowly rising to 9K DPS (swapping BS for Caps).  That is, I see it taking 2-3 times as long to run a site. I also see potentially a 4th real life player on field, as juggling battleships for dreads will take extra attention.

I have chosen armor, it is what I am most familiar.  Given the setup and not automatically triggering escalations, then maybe shield might also be OK.

I have some experience with what I am talking about, but not enough.  There will be holes in the above speculation.  Feel free to poke holes in it.

For lesser skilled pilots trying boosting, I sometimes use Gnoboosts.  Put whatever useful links that your well skilled booster does not have.  It is replacement tanked, and I would much rather lose it than the rest of the fleet.

[Gnosis, Gnobooster]

Co-Processor II
Co-Processor II
Co-Processor II
Co-Processor II
Co-Processor II
Co-Processor II

Command Processor I
Command Processor I
Command Processor I
Command Processor I
Command Processor I
Medium F-S9 Regolith Compact Shield Extender

Skirmish Warfare Link - Evasive Maneuvers I
Information Warfare Link - Sensor Integrity I
Armored Warfare Link - Rapid Repair I
Skirmish Warfare Link - Rapid Deployment I
Armored Warfare Link - Passive Defense I
Armored Warfare Link - Damage Control I

Medium Processor Overclocking Unit I
Medium Processor Overclocking Unit I
Medium Capacitor Control Circuit I


  1. You are correct, the now proposed high angle weapon platform is useless.
    It will not be used in pve or pvp.
    Unless you change it that it still does 10 k dps but with the limit of 2k dps per ship.
    So that way you could attack 5 targets at once with 2k dps.

  2. It will certainly change but I dont see them going away. I know,a far from max skill thanny pilot that would solo escalate successfully. The new drobe boatvis likely as capeable as the old. Add in a remote rep ball of subcaps or logi plus high tank ships and even if all the dreads do is activate the waves it can still get done. Time to complete will andcsone silly dual box games will stop but that is not terrible. The bigger change imo is when offgrid warfare links go away. Also they said something about increasing targeting range, if so there are l8hely some 350km solutions.

  3. "We want to get the number of sleepers down before the logi runs out of capacitor"
    One improvement to Jack's method is to add a medium and some small energy vampires to the Loki. Have the Loki drain from the Archon and then the Archon only uses one cap transfer. If the Archon only uses what he needs to keep people up, he should never run out of cap. If you need a Archon pilot, let me know.

    As for the post cap rebalance, they mentioned 3 types of fighters, light, support, and heavy. If carriers get heavy, them maybe the Loki still has a purpose and these heavy fighters will be able to hit webbed BSs.

  4. I too am looking into wormholes, but I think the assumption that cap escalations will stay the same post capital changes is flawed.

    Also confirmed in Sugar Kyle's blog ( regarding a round table in Vegas concerning PVE:

    Q: Cap escalations will be even harder?
    A: We will have a dev blog about capital escalations.

    That of itself and in itself is neither here nor there - just a reminder that the best laid plans of mice and capsuleers are all subject to the plans of CCP.

    This of course not to say that you (or I) should do nothing in the mean time - just by way of a heads up!

  5. Of course wh income was going to be nerfed, just like high sec income was hammered. The null sec cartel RMT machines can't control wh's and high sec directly, so they launched a meta war (high sec has been attacked for last 3 years), and are achieving results.

  6. I think that if the HAW's are useless but the Dread still triggers a wave, you'll still drop the Dread just to trigger an ISKalation. Carriers will become a better DPS option, as you can sit off at 250km range and drive fighters around in Homeworld Mode to attack the Sleepers and your FAX will be able to keep them up.

    It's about time C5 escalation nonsense got nerfed.

    1. To quote the Ferrengi I don't want to stop the exploitation. I want to become the exploiter (at least for a little while).

  7. I feel like this is a horrible change toghter with the new citadels for the small casual corps it will force out them from wh space making it to the playground of only th big 30-200 man groups and then its all like nullsec again.


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