PvP For PvP - Mamba versus Fer-de-Lance

I've used a Fer-de-Lance for combat for a very long time. I even got a ship kit for it. I'm quite happy with it.

However, just a few minutes ago, I decided to make a Mamba build in Coriolis out of boredom. The results really surprised me.

Here is my current Fer-de-Lance build: https://s.orbis.zone/2d45
And here is the Mamba build I just compiled:

I find this quite shocking. The shields are barely any different, the DPS is very similar, in fact, the Mamba has higher DPS potential if you don't use the rails in the Fer-de-Lance very often, and the Mamba is a lot faster.

I thought the Fer-de-Lance was the ultimate PvP ship? Is the Mamba simply a better choice? Why are there not as many Mamba pilots as there are Fer-de-Lance pilots?

I know that the Mamba lacks the maneuverability that the Fer-de-Lance has, but is the Mamba's maneuverability so bad that it makes it unviable for combat?
What's going on here? Have I gone down the wrong path in life? Somebody please explain...
 
Fly it for yourself and see if you like it. A lot of combat pilots hate it. I have both FDL and mamba and I like both. The slow pitch rate of the mamba takes some getting used to. But its not a deal breaker for me.
 
The hardpoint placement and manoeverability make the Mamba clearly worse then the FdL.
I bet if you put the c3s in the inside of the prow of the Mamba, so you could hit with all guns fixed (PA/APA) it would be a much closer thing than it is in reality.
Combined with the abysmal spin-up time of c3 multicannons you can't even copy the multigimbal FdL outfit.

Mamba is clear second :|
 
The slow pitch rate of the mamba takes some getting used to.
Switching from the Fer-de-Lance to the Mamba is basically sacrificing 23 agility for ~48m/s speed. Isn't this trade clearly worth it?
I doubt there will be a significant difference with the maneuverability since I fly with perma FA-Off anyway...

I understand that you like both, but I'm trying to find out whether or not the Mamba is objectively better than the Fer-de-Lance, and it really seems to be..
 
The hardpoint placement makes the Mamba clearly worse then the FdL.
I'm not very well informed about the hardpoint placements of the Mamba, but since Mamba is made for jousting, does hardpoint placement make a significant difference? The guns converge when there is distance, don't they?
 
Switching from the Fer-de-Lance to the Mamba is basically sacrificing 23 agility for ~48m/s speed. Isn't this trade clearly worth it?
I doubt there will be a significant difference with the maneuverability since I fly with perma FA-Off anyway...

I understand that you like both, but I'm trying to find out whether or not the Mamba is objectively better than the Fer-de-Lance, and it really seems to be..
FAoff will help, but it also depends on your weapon choice as Bigmaec mentioned. I use gimbals MC, Frag + Pacifier on the mamba so I don't mind the HP placement.
 
Alright... I just checked the hardpoint placements on the Mamba, and they are in fact quite horrendous...

Still though, seems viable, especially with the extra speed.

But I doubt I'll be changing to it from my Fer-de-Lance any time soon...
 
While I don't think the gap is as extreme as some make it out to be, the ships are not the same, cannot be used the same way, and the FDL will generally be the superior combatant in most straight-up fights.

Paper stats don't say much, mostly because such lists and comparisons omit things that are hard to usefully quantify, but which are still extremely important in practice.
 
Alright... I just checked the hardpoint placements on the Mamba, and they are in fact quite horrendous...
That and the lat/vert thrusters. That's what I disliked about it: https://forums.frontier.co.uk/showthread.php/453898-Mamba-!!!-MAMBA-!!!!?p=7247550&viewfull=1#post7247550

Seems more amenable to jousting, reverski, ramming rather than dogfighting like an FdL. My overall impression was an underwhelming FdL clone that's a slightly larger target.

If rails are used sparsely, it's probably to cancel an SCB or modules snipe which have a much higher effect than DPS would indicate.

With that fixed mamba loadout you posted I think it's going to be hard to land all 3 plasmas on a medium ship (or both rails except at long range). Every missed shot is just throwing away distro.

Also note the mamba suffers somewhat more from reduced engine pips than FdL does (source: https://forums.frontier.co.uk/showthread.php/478348-Effect-of-engine-pips-on-agility?p=7439457&viewfull=1#post7439457) although it's still pretty good in this regard.
 
Both are crap :)
Krait Phantom is top class! :)
Meh, I'm not a great PvPer, but in the few times Phantom gankers have interdicted me, they've visited the rebuy screen. Every single one of them were while I was returning to Shinrarta in my NPC pirating Vette. Not even outfitted for PvP, I've easily taken them down. In the same scenario against a FDL, I run. Granted, this is a small sample size, but I've been shocked at how easy they are to hit and they simply lack the shield MJ's of a FDL or the Hull of a FAS or Chiefton. It's the only time PvP has been easy (Outside the fool in a python who thought he could hang with my FDL) which makes me weigh it so heavily despite the small sample size.
 
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Mamba and FdL are very different ships, made for very different purposes. Formerly, FdL had to cover both the role of the dogfighter and of the control/support ship. Being the fastest medium/large ship in a straight line, it was the only option for field supremacy and area control, but the lack of large mounts made it very hard to use it in that capacity. The mamba fulfils that role perfectly, with the option to use the well placed huge mount as an extra deadly remote weapon, or a finaliser for a long-range jousting approach. The FdL has been retouched to improve its viability in large-target dogfights, while the Mamba is made for field supremacy and long range jousting. I don't think a mamba could win against a FdL, but at the same time, a FdL would be pretty powerless against a Mamba that doesn't want to play on the FdL terms. The Mamba is a very special ship made for a very special role.
 
Mamba and FdL are very different ships, made for very different purposes. Formerly, FdL had to cover both the role of the dogfighter and of the control/support ship. Being the fastest medium/large ship in a straight line, it was the only option for field supremacy and area control, but the lack of large mounts made it very hard to use it in that capacity. The mamba fulfils that role perfectly, with the option to use the well placed huge mount as an extra deadly remote weapon, or a finaliser for a long-range jousting approach. The FdL has been retouched to improve its viability in large-target dogfights, while the Mamba is made for field supremacy and long range jousting. I don't think a mamba could win against a FdL, but at the same time, a FdL would be pretty powerless against a Mamba that doesn't want to play on the FdL terms. The Mamba is a very special ship made for a very special role.
Can you translate that for noobs?
What is field supremacy and area control, and why do you need large mounts for that?
What is an extra deadly remote weapon? Or what is a long-range jousting approach?
When has the FdL been "retouched"?
 
Can you translate that for noobs?
What is field supremacy and area control, and why do you need large mounts for that?
What is an extra deadly remote weapon? Or what is a long-range jousting approach?
When has the FdL been "retouched"?
Ok, sorry for having been a bit cryptic.
First, let's get the FdL retouch out of the way. I clearly remember FdL being much less maneuverable than Python, when I last touched it about two years ago. Lateral/vertical thrusters apart, pitch/roll was abysmal, worse than the current Mamba. A Python would have easily outmaneuvered you, and getting a clear aim at an Anaconda power plant was extremely difficult (while it was a piece of cake on a Python). Basically, the FdL was the least maneuverable medium sized ship. As the roll/pitch numbers are now, they make the FdL much better at dogfighting than before; as it outclasses more maneuverable medium ships, as the Federal Assault Ship, in every other compartment, the FdL is now the most capable dogfighter.

Field Supremacy is the ability to see the situation of the battlefield and intervene where necessary. Suppose you're a wing leader; your three wingmen are busy in three dogfights. You want either to 1) help the wingman that can close the fight the fastest, so to achieve numeric superiority as fast as possible, or 2) support the wingman that is suffering the most, in order to prevent the opponent to gain numeric superiority. To do that you need to 1) have a clear picture of the whole battlefield, 2) be able to bring support where needed, and do it fast. The Mamba is the perfect ship to 1) hit hard from afar and 2) bring itself where needed, or 3) disengaging effortlessly where the field needs to be conceded. Even when not in the role of the wingleader, but following orders, the Mamba is the weapon your wingleaders want, in order to bring numerical advantage where they want it, when they want it.

Area Control is a similar concept: it's the idea of creating areas of interdiction for opponents; places where your opponent doesn't want to be. With its speed, the Mamba can use long range weapons to make some areas "poisonous" for the opponent; even if not able to bring a killer DPS from afar, the DPS it can deploy and the ability to hit and run are more than enough to shift the balance of the battle in the area where it's deployed, so that the opponent doesn't want to fight there, or it does, it is likely to lose.

For deadly remote weapon, I meant the large mounts. Large mounts have higher penetration than the medium mounts the FdL has. Being the only medium ship with a huge mount AND two large mounts, it can bring those large hardpoints into a long-range battle as no other medium ship can. The 4 medium on the FdL were a bad customer for sure, but the 2 large on the Mamba are much more dangerous, while its 2 smalls, instead of being a handicap, can be used for utility (i.e. to apply debufs) while absorbing less power than medium hardpoints used for that purpose on the FdL.

As for the long range Jousting, it's a variant of Jousting. There are different fighting techniques in this game, and you have to pick the right one for the situation at hand, and for the ships involved in the fight. Jousting is flying at relatively high speed towards the opponent, firing when approaching, turning around and repeating. It usually takes two to tango, unless you are MUCH faster than your opponent, in which case you can joust alone on a quasi-static target. The idea of jousting is that both of the opponents are betting on who has the highest DPS/shield-armor ratio, and can turn its hardpoint on target faster; the one that got its estimation right wins (or in case much faster than your opponent, you're the only one betting on your DPS/shielding ratio and hardpoint positioning, forcing your opponent to accept your bet and hope you're wrong).

Long-range Jousting is like jousting, but with the ability to grind at the opponent defense from afar added in the picture. For example, firing long-range engineered beam lasers, then discharging short range, higher damage-per-hit weapons (frag cannons, cannons, plasma accelerators) when getting near, passing by your opponent and repeating.
While you just need a good DPS/shield-armor ratio to joust, to do long-range jousting you need also speed: you want change your long-range/short-range positioning as fast as possible. FdL was good at that, but not perfect; for this technique, Mamba is the real deal.

In short, Mamba has a very specific role and a very specific preferential fighting technique in which it excels. But it has also something more: it can determine the rhythm of the battle.

In a dogfight against an equally equipped FdL and an equally skilled pilot, Mamba is sure to lose, but the Mamba doesn't have to accept the fight on the FdL terms. Other than the supremacy/control roles we talked above, at the moment, the Mamba is the only ship that can say: "you're either fighting on my terms, or I am not fighting" -- and that's an immense advantage. Its only preferential fighting technique is long range Jousting, and it kinda suck at everything else, but it's the only ship that can say "we're either long-range jousting, where I am the best, or I am out of here".

As a PvP generic fighter ship, I think the FdL is superior; but there are some roles that the Mamba covers much better, and I happen to like them. So, the Mamba might be for you, if you prefer a more tactical, high-level play style. (Also, the introduction of the Mamba allowed the FdL to focus on its preferential role, so that it doesn't have to spread thin on field supremacy and area control, where it was good, but less than optimal).
 
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Ok, sorry for having been a bit cryptic.
First, let's get the FdL retouch out of the way. I clearly remember FdL being much less maneuverable than Python, when I last touched it about two years ago. Lateral/vertical thrusters apart, pitch/roll was abysmal, worse than the current Mamba. A Python would have easily outmaneuvered you, and getting a clear aim at an Anaconda power plant was extremely difficult (while it was a piece of cake on a Python). Basically, the FdL was the least maneuverable medium sized ship. As the roll/pitch numbers are now, they make the FdL much better at dogfighting than before; as it outclasses more maneuverable medium ships, as the Federal Assault Ship, in every other compartment, the FdL is now the most capable dogfighter.

Field Supremacy is the ability to see the situation of the battlefield and intervene where necessary. Suppose you're a wing leader; your three wingmen are busy in three dogfights. You want either to 1) help the wingman that can close the fight the fastest, so to achieve numeric superiority as fast as possible, or 2) support the wingman that is suffering the most, in order to prevent the opponent to gain numeric superiority. To do that you need to 1) have a clear picture of the whole battlefield, 2) be able to bring support where needed, and do it fast. The Mamba is the perfect ship to 1) hit hard from afar and 2) bring itself where needed, or 3) disengaging effortlessly where the field needs to be conceded. Even when not in the role of the wingleader, but following orders, the Mamba is the weapon your wingleaders want, in order to bring numerical advantage where they want it, when they want it.

Area Control is a similar concept: it's the idea of creating areas of interdiction for opponents; places where your opponent doesn't want to be. With its speed, the Mamba can use long range weapons to make some areas "poisonous" for the opponent; even if not able to bring a killer DPS from afar, the DPS it can deploy and the ability to hit and run are more than enough to shift the balance of the battle in the area where it's deployed, so that the opponent doesn't want to fight there, or it does, it is likely to lose.

For deadly remote weapon, I meant the large mounts. Large mounts have higher penetration than the medium mounts the FdL has. Being the only medium ship with a huge mount AND two large mounts, it can bring those large hardpoints into a long-range battle as no other medium ship can. The 4 medium on the FdL were a bad customer for sure, but the 2 large on the Mamba are much more dangerous, while its 2 smalls, instead of being a handicap, can be used for utility (i.e. to apply debufs) while absorbing less power than medium hardpoints used for that purpose on the FdL.

As for the long range Jousting, it's a variant of Jousting. There are different fighting techniques in this game, and you have to pick the right one for the situation at hand, and for the ships involved in the fight. Jousting is flying at relatively high speed towards the opponent, firing when approaching, turning around and repeating. It usually takes two to tango, unless you are MUCH faster than your opponent, in which case you can joust alone on a quasi-static target. The idea of jousting is that both of the opponents are betting on who has the highest DPS/shield-armor ratio, and can turn its hardpoint on target faster; the one that got its estimation right wins (or in case much faster than your opponent, you're the only one betting on your DPS/shielding ratio and hardpoint positioning, forcing your opponent to accept your bet and hope you're wrong).

Long-range Jousting is like jousting, but with the ability to grind at the opponent defense from afar added in the picture. For example, firing long-range engineered beam lasers, then discharging short range, higher damage-per-hit weapons (frag cannons, cannons, plasma accelerators) when getting near, passing by your opponent and repeating.
While you just need a good DPS/shield-armor ratio to joust, to do long-range jousting you need also speed: you want change your long-range/short-range positioning as fast as possible. FdL was good at that, but not perfect; for this technique, Mamba is the real deal.

In short, Mamba has a very specific role and a very specific preferential fighting technique in which it excels. But it has also something more: it can determine the rhythm of the battle.

In a dogfight against an equally equipped FdL and an equally skilled pilot, Mamba is sure to lose, but the Mamba doesn't have to accept the fight on the FdL terms. Other than the supremacy/control roles we talked above, at the moment, the Mamba is the only ship that can say: "you're either fighting on my terms, or I am not fighting" -- and that's an immense advantage. Its only preferential fighting technique is long range Jousting, and it kinda suck at everything else, but it's the only ship that can say "we're either long-range jousting, where I am the best, or I am out of here".

As a PvP generic fighter ship, I think the FdL is superior; but there are some roles that the Mamba covers much better, and I happen to like them. So, the Mamba might be for you, if you prefer a more tactical, high-level play style. (Also, the introduction of the Mamba allowed the FdL to focus on its preferential role, so that it doesn't have to spread thin on field supremacy and area control, where it was good, but less than optimal).
This is a great post, if I have a complaint it's that I wouldn't share this depth of strategy on the forum so easily, I save that for those close to me. FD doesn't get enough credit for the spread of the ships.
 
Mambas are pretty much just gank tools, they replaced the clipper for hit and run ship of the year.

1v1 or equal fights? You've intentionally gimped yourself and are likely going to get smeeshed by an FDL.

The Mamba looks nice, but is inherently impractical because of bad hardpoint placement, poor turn rates and underwhelming defensive capabilities when compared to a fair portion of other mediums.

If you're bored of the FDL, buy a Chieftan, far more rewarding to fly and can pull the absolute tightest turns second only to ships in the lower weight classes.
 
Out of curiosity what do people think of the Alliance ships?

I know the perceived wisdom is that the Chieftain is the best, although I also like the Challenger myself
 
First, let's get the FdL retouch out of the way. I clearly remember FdL being much less maneuverable than Python, when I last touched it about two years ago. Lateral/vertical thrusters apart, pitch/roll was abysmal, worse than the current Mamba. A Python would have easily outmaneuvered you, and getting a clear aim at an Anaconda power plant was extremely difficult (while it was a piece of cake on a Python). Basically, the FdL was the least maneuverable medium sized ship.
The FDL has always been quite maneuverable, even well before the buff to it's rotationals (which was back in December 2015). It's true that it's rotationals were mediocre before from 1.2 through 1.4, but it's thruster performance more than made up for it. Of the medium and mediumish (e.g. Clipper) ships only the Python was really a match for it 1v1 (though the FDL was much more useful in wing PvP because of it's mobility) and that was because it's enormous firepower and durability, not a maneuverability advantage.

When has the FdL been "retouched"?
Back when the FDL was merely the best overall medium PvP vessel (1.2-1.4), it's base stats featured ~15% worse pitch, 10% worse roll/yaw, a class 5 power plant, and significantly worse thermals.

For some completely inexplicable reason in 1.5/2.0 FDev gave the ship, which was already one of the most popular in it's class, a substantial buff, securing it's dominance and taking it from a potent, popular vessel, to an overpowered, nearly omnipresent one.

I liked the original incarnation better...it's limitations gave it character, not to mention allowing more variety.

Mambas are pretty much just gank tools, they replaced the clipper for hit and run ship of the year.

1v1 or equal fights? You've intentionally gimped yourself and are likely going to get smeeshed by an FDL.

The Mamba looks nice, but is inherently impractical because of bad hardpoint placement, poor turn rates and underwhelming defensive capabilities when compared to a fair portion of other mediums.
While I still think the FDL has a modest edge in 1v1s, I've never found the Mamba to be impractical.

Some example of the first incarnation of the Mamba from 3.3b3:
Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hDAz8qawVQY


Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2sE0ucv7rBg


Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PPqhJzXR3l4


Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ppTK6Uq7kbM


I've been getting back into the Mamba recently and having pretty good results with a revised version of the loadout above. Have a pretty huge backlog of videos and haven't uploaded many 1v1s though...maybe Ashenfox has one of our duel on hand.

While the current Mamba on live (which is actually it's 3rd or 4th incarnation) isn't quite as boosty as it was, it's got much better rotationals and much better heat dissipation than it used to. Overall, it's now a better ship than it was, and a few refinements to the loadout I was using generally lets me win most 1v1s against most mediums, even when their pilots have similar or slightly superior skills. Even the serious weaknesses (in the ship, my loadout, and my piloting) I discovered against PeLucheuh's shieldless focused PA FAS have been significantly reduced by a combination of the upgraded rotationals, thermals (allowing for a sixth booster and hotter weapons), the inclusion of a seeker rack (which have been a bane to my own shieldless FAS) and experience.

If anything, it's vulnerability to focus fire that keeps me from making the Mamba my primary PvP vessel...it's a bigger, softer, target than the FDL with more exposed drives than any non-Alliance medium, and it's velocity advantage isn't so great as to completely to overcome that.

Anyway, the Mamba isn't an FDL clone and isn't conducive to all the same sorts of loadouts that work with it or other ships. Once it's strengths and weaknesses are accounted for, it's a perfectly capable ship, even if it doesn't appeal to everyone.

Out of curiosity what do people think of the Alliance ships?
Chieftain and Challenger seem to have largely supplanted the FAS...not surprising since they are similar, but have more advantages (better hardpoints and hardpoint placement, equal or superior durability) and only one major disadvantage vs. the FAS (very exposed drives).

While I've experimented with them, I've never favored them, for the same reasons I've never favored the FAS...I find them to be too drifty and a bit overly sensitive rotationally, especially with regard to yaw. Viper, Vulture, FDL, even the Mamba and Kraits, are more my style.

Of course, other people have the opposite preferences and there are quite a few pilots that do extremely well in these ships.
 
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