Violating thermodynamics with Guardians

3rd December 2009 – 5.38 pm

Twin Guardians! These logistics ships need a test. Theoretically, they can both feed the other enough energy to keep their capacitors stable whilst running four large remote armour repair modules. For a cruiser-sized hull, that is mind-blowing. For an engineer, it's utter nonsense, the equivalent of a perpetual motion machine. I'll ignore it for now, in favour of piloting a giant robot's head.

The high slots on the Guardians are filled with two large energy transfer modules and four remote armour repairers, leaving no empty slots for weapons. It's just as well we're not fitting weapons as there are no launcher hard points. I am at a loss as to who would design a ship that cannot fit launchers. The Guardian is one bafflement after another.

In the mid slots are a sensor booster and ECCM system, the first to improve target locking times, the second to help prevent being jammed. A ship needs to be targeted to be remotely repaired, so if the Guardians are to be relied upon to repair the fleet, improving the speed and reliability of target locking is important. The low slots try to give the ship something approaching a tank, with some hardeners and plate, along with a bit more grid in order to get all systems on-line. The fitting screen shows the capacitor lasting for only a matter of seconds, but this doesn't take in to account the energy from a second Guardian being transferred across to mine.

Warping out of the tower's shields lets us check our paired capabilities. Powering the energy transfer modules throws charged beams at each other's ship, draining the capacitor quickly. The drain on the capacitor is easily recharged, with plenty to spare, thanks to the 15% reduction in capacitor use per level of the logistics ship skill that the Guardian gives, so we both send out significantly more energy to the other than we use to do so. Even with all four remote reppers running, our ships remain cap stable. It defies physics, but that just makes it even cooler.

A corporation colleague is keen to test out our survivability, bringing various battleships and drones in turn to where we are playing. Targeting one of us and then the other, he looses volley after volley of energy beams, missiles and artillery, but four large repair modules running on each of us means the damage barely registers beyond stripping the vestigial Amarrian shields.

All in all, we run a successful test of our initial Guardians' fittings and capabilities. The ships still needed to be tested in combat conditions, and the huge drain on the capacitor makes synchronising the energy transfer modules a little important, but it looks like we can keep our fleet battleships repaired better than they can. What needs to be found is how much tank the fleet can sacrifice for DPS without dropping below a level the twin Guardians can safely repair.

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