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Thread: Combat in Conflict zones - a few questions

  1. #1

    Combat in Conflict zones - a few questions

    First - yeah, I'm really TERRIBLE at combat, so bear with me ...

    I play only in Solo, so these Qs are about NPC behaviour.

    1. Sometimes during combat I find that my target NPC 'unlocks'; ie I have to find and re-target him again (and fire, in order to engage my turrets, which are set to 'Target Only'.

    Is this because:
    a. the NPC has engaged Silent running...? ;
    b. my sensors aren't good enough;
    c. a combination of the above; or
    d. something else entirely


    2. Sometimes my NPC target happens to be an ship-launched fighter which I've found to be almost unkillable! Despite being targetted by gimballed turrets that are all apparently hitting, his shields remain at full
    (in fact the only damage he seems to sustain is the 'bleed-through' damage caused by the Engineer Mod 'Phasing sequence' which I've applied to one of my burst laser turrets - his hull depletes by about 1%, but his shields remain untouched! So I KNOW I'm hitting him! )

    ... any ideas..?

  2. #2
    1. Probably launched a heatsink.

    2. No idea. I just obliterate them easily. They have paper shields.

  3. #3
    1. Agreed - I have had this happen with higher ranking NPC and I have seen the heatsink
    2. Very odd, I can only imagine that a turret is really struggling to hit such a small fast moving target so shield regen is enough to keep his shields up.
    .
    N.B. If you are terrible at combat what are you doing in a CZ? These are the hardest combat areas to be in. In a Haz RES or CNB you only get attacked if you give reason (attack them, got a bounty or carrying cargo) in a CZ there are LOTS of ships attacking you and they are all military spec so harder to kill than pirates.

  4. #4
    You only talk about turrets - do you have any other weapons? Turrets have the lowest DPS, so will add to your problems.

    Using just gimballed weapons would allow you to see what was happening and maybe understand if you are hitting - I have turrets on the rear of my Beluga and often can't even tell if they are firing, never mind hitting. With turrets you have to 'fire' at the target (i.e. have it in your sights and press the fire key) to have them start - not sure if you will need to do that again once you lose target lock (I think you do, but I too am no combat expert).

    But fit some non-turrets (technical term ) so you can at least see the target when you fire.

    Edit: And feel free to skip the SLF if they cause you issues, plenty of other ships to go for and teh SLF is really only there to harass you.

  5. #5
    Originally Posted by Rob_the_Sparky View Post (Source)

    N.B. If you are terrible at combat what are you doing in a CZ?
    Well... it's a long story, might as well give you a laugh....

    I've been a 'founder member' - grinding my way up through all the ranks; I'm elite at Trading, elite at Exploring. King and Admiral. Unlocked all the Engineers.
    Been to Sag A; Beagle Point; Ishum's Reach.


    BUT ... I hate combat! so I've left it 'till last'
    (yes, I know there are other great goodies on the way, more power to Frontier)

    So... I accumulated vast wealth and bought an Federal Corvette. All turrets, save for 2 huge gimballed Multicannons 'on the trigger' that are great for melting the hull of the enemy NPC after the shields go down.

    Heh ... I've always been a bit of a coward in this game, even way back in the original Elite - run and gun tactics for me; mining laser on the front, beam laser on the back, do a Brave Sir Robin and the pursuing NPC would drift into the cross-hairs eventually.....

    It could well be that the turrets can't keep up with the speed of the SLF (mind you, they have no trouble shredding everything else!)
    Next time this happens, I think I'll launch a fighter of my own and see if that works.

    As for the disappearing target .... Aha, yes, the heatsink would explain it... thanks!


    (.. and why this Newcomers forum..? Well, I like it here! Good informative replies, no rants; and at the end of the day, well despite everything I still FEEL like a noob....)

  6. #6
    Chase after the SLF and give him everything you've got as close as you can. Don't go about it half-baked. Their shields come back very quickly, so, unless you finish them off with big hits, you'll be in for a very long battle.

  7. #7
    Re: Heatsinks

    Well, the 'disappearing target' happened again, so I immediately jackhammer-targetted the area and sure enough a heatsink appeared as a target
    I guess that proves it (for me, anyway).

    Some questions arising:

    1. Can I do the same thing in combat? ie pop a heatsink and 'disappear' from the enemy sensors?
    How long does this effect last? ie what level of heat will bring me back 'visible'..?
    (... or does it all depend on the quality of the enemy NPC sensors?)

    2. Suppose I'm in combat and decide to bug out...

    'JJ - you ran away!
    No, No, I made a strategic withdrawal...
    Yes, that's what I said, you ran away!'


    - should I use boost?
    Presumably, boosting produces heat, so this might negate the masking effect of the heatsink
    (How can I work this out? Are there any useful stats in the Outfitting screen I should look for?)

    Balancing this is the fact that my thrusters are level 5 Dirty Drive tuned by Prof Palin, so the difference in speed is significant: Normal speed 272, boosted 353.

    Or mebbe it's simpler just to boost out of the combat zone, pooping heatsinks till I can wake out..
    (sorry for the imagery, but it DOES seem extraordinarily appropriate here.... )

    3. Missiles
    If I pop a heatsink:
    a. do incoming missiles lose their lock..?
    b. does the enemy missile LAUNCHER lose its lock?
    c. do incoming missiles (presumably heat seekers) zero in on the ejected heat sink? (if not, well, SHOULDN'T they?)

  8. #8
    One tip - whenever I am going in to a RES (I don't do CZs anymore) I always target (plot a route to) a station in a nearby system. Then, if I am getting really creamed, I can just use the "select next system in route" key and h-jump out - you can't be mass locked by ships for a h-jump. Saved my pert little botty many times that way.

  9. #9
    Originally Posted by jpjeffrey View Post (Source)
    Re: Heatsinks

    Well, the 'disappearing target' happened again, so I immediately jackhammer-targetted the area and sure enough a heatsink appeared as a target
    I guess that proves it (for me, anyway).

    Some questions arising:

    1. Can I do the same thing in combat? ie pop a heatsink and 'disappear' from the enemy sensors?
    How long does this effect last? ie what level of heat will bring me back 'visible'..?
    (... or does it all depend on the quality of the enemy NPC sensors?)

    2. Suppose I'm in combat and decide to bug out...

    'JJ - you ran away!
    No, No, I made a strategic withdrawal...
    Yes, that's what I said, you ran away!'


    - should I use boost?
    Presumably, boosting produces heat, so this might negate the masking effect of the heatsink
    (How can I work this out? Are there any useful stats in the Outfitting screen I should look for?)

    Balancing this is the fact that my thrusters are level 5 Dirty Drive tuned by Prof Palin, so the difference in speed is significant: Normal speed 272, boosted 353.

    Or mebbe it's simpler just to boost out of the combat zone, pooping heatsinks till I can wake out..
    (sorry for the imagery, but it DOES seem extraordinarily appropriate here.... )

    3. Missiles
    If I pop a heatsink:
    a. do incoming missiles lose their lock..?
    b. does the enemy missile LAUNCHER lose its lock?
    c. do incoming missiles (presumably heat seekers) zero in on the ejected heat sink? (if not, well, SHOULDN'T they?)
    1 yes, duration will be dependent on how hot your ship runs, range will be down to sensor quality and your vessels heat, just look at how hard DBXs can be to lock up you can virtually look out of the window and read the name off their hull and not lock them. The ease of doing this will be improved by efficient Power Plants and Clean Drive tuning, OOPS.

    2 When running there are two approaches the simple one is to go 2 pips to shields 4 pips to engines and spam the boost button the aim of this approach is to be out of range before they can hurt you too much. The other approach is to use a burst of speed to open the range then go silent using heat sinks to stop your ship frying. I have used variations of the first technique successfully but have never fitted heat sinks so the other option is theoretical.

    3b happens doubtful about the others.

  10. #10
    In a vette, just ignore the SLF. Kill the ship that launches them instead. Much quicker and kills them both.
    Easy to identify the ship, it will be a t9, maybe a conda

  11. #11
    Originally Posted by Dommarraa View Post (Source)
    In a vette, just ignore the SLF. Kill the ship that launches them instead. Much quicker and kills them both.
    Easy to identify the ship, it will be a t9, maybe a conda
    If you do want to take a SLF fighter out .. fire and forget heat seekers are quite satisfying.

  12. #12
    If you're in a Vette, ignore the mosquitos and find which ship they have come from. It shouldn't take you long to take out a Type-9 or an Anaconda.

  13. #13
    Hmmm!. I don't know about you lot but I'm normally in the CZs to do massacre missions, where it's the number of kills that counts. SLFs are therefore often easy money, so I always go for them first rather than the mothership; however, some use chaff, which makes them tricky, so if I can't kill them within about 30 seconds, I just go on to the next ship.

  14. #14
    If the turrets are having trouble tracking the fighter then try to keep it stable relative to you. Smaller turrets track faster but better to keep the fighter position stable compared to you then they don't have to track.
    .
    I don't have a Vette yet though so can't help out with that sort of detail - you are higher ranked than I am in most areas! Still working towards my first Elite having started playing about a week after release.

  15. #15
    My CZ ship is a conda which is all turrets plus a C4 gimballed beam on the front. My 3 x C3 hard points are running increased range burst lasers and I find they work well against SLFs at long range. At longer ranges the change in angle is less than at close range so the turrets can track them.

    If they are in close I roll to bring the 4 smaller hard points into play which track faster and all have MC on

    If it gets in front of me...well the C4 beam just melts them

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