Getting to grips with logistics

15th February 2010 – 5.40 pm

The fleet assembles for some straightforward Sleeper anomaly combat. Three capacitor-hungry and tank-compromised DPS battleships are complemented by twin Guardians, and we're all looking for profitable action. My two recent outings in the Guardian have seen me paired with inexperienced but competent pilots, and now Fin is back in the second Guardian I am feeling much more comfortable. In fact, I can now see that the sorties with the other pilots have trained me as much as them, as I got to see the Guardian's systems from fresh perspectives. As a result, with Fin's practiced confidence inspiring me again, the Guardians put in their best performance yet. I believe we are getting to grips with logistics.

With our skills and set-up, two remote repair modules can be run continuously with only one energy transfer array active between the two Guardians. A third repper can be run for an awfully long time, and a fourth for a couple of minutes before the second transfer array needs to be kicked in. But other habits can be modified to increase the efficiency of our ship capacitors. We have tended to keep a 'safety' repper on the other Guardian, as our smaller hulls won't take as much damage as the battleships. Needing to switch a repper from one ship to a Guardian can be a concern if the repper has just started a cycle. Our Scorpion ECM boat also has a safety repper energised on it, because of the threat of peak damage should an ECM cycle fail. Running these two safety reppers still gives two floating repair modules, but it also creates a constant energy drain. The capacitor usage can be reduced without compromising on the safety.

I keep a repper reserved for the other Guardian, but I keep it inactive. If the Guardian starts taking damage I will need to notice this1, switch my target focus over and energise the repper quickly, but as this is all part of my primary function as logistics pilot it is not an additional burden. Otherwise, the repper can remain inactive and reduce the drain on my capacitor. The safety repper remains active on the Scorpion, because I don't want to deal with the histrionic whining of the pilot the moment Sleeper fire starts hitting his ship, but the Scorpion tends to get most of the attention from the Sleepers. The two floating reppers are used as normal, repairing damage where it is taken, but more actively activated and disactivated according to the effectiveness of our ECM. When all the Sleeper ships are jammed there is no damage to repair and no need to run reppers.

The more reserved use of reppers reduces the capacitor drain such that only one energy transfer array is needed between the Guardians, except at the peak of incoming Sleeper fire. Indeed, the more adaptive use of reppers allows each Guardian to use its second transfer array to replenish separate drained battleship capacitors. Even though one of the transfer arrays is not mutually benefitting the Guardian, the capacitor remains stable thanks to the reduced number of hungry reppers running. And when a new wave of Sleepers arrives, or an ECM jam fails, the inactive reppers can be activated on the appropriate target as normal and, if required, the second energy transfer array switched back to the Guardian to power all the remote repair modules. Indeed, greater agility with repairs is achieved with this configuration, as the inactive but reserved repper for the other Guardian can be activated on a hot target in emergencies without needing a module cycle to finish.

Maybe I was the one learning during the recent sorties with new Guardian pilots, gaining a better understanding of the intricacies of remote fleet repairs and active capacitor management. Becoming more intimate with the capabilities of the Guardian and its systems only adds to my confidence in knowing how to be most effective, as well as gaining greater intuition as to how my twin ship's systems are likely holding up. It certainly helps to have the trust of a solid wingman, too.

1. It is worth noting that keeping an eye on the fleet 'watch list' is a better indication of who is taking damage, because ships under fire flash in red. This can be rather more obvious than trying to monitor several armour bars that may or may not be changing, although the individual bars are worth watching to gauge the magnitude of incoming damage.
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