Monday, May 19, 2014

Kronos: Transports

The buzz in the EVE blogosphere is all about the revisions to transports that will be coming with Kronos.  There are three forum posts detailing proposed changes: freighters, blockade runners, and deep space transports.

Most of the hubbub in the larger 'verse is coming from nullsec and lowsec people worried about jump freighting.  Some of it is about normal freighters.  I don't use a jump freighter so I have no opinion worth sharing on that.  However, I do run a normal freighter from time to time, and the changes there don't seem to me to be terrible.  Basically I can get similar performance to today, just by paying some for rigs.  I probably won't attempt to rig my post-Kronos freighter to replicate its current stats, though.  Instead I will go with probably one cargo expander and two hulls, since I'd like to be able to autopilot and I am more paranoid about ganking than many.

People seem happy with the blockade runner changes, which includes having two highslots on all of them.  This makes me happy because I currently use Viators, which have one highslot.  Obviously a stealth cloak is a must-have; much higher priority than a probe launcher.  Still, a probe launcher would mitigate the possibility of being trapped when using EOL wormholes, and/or having one popped on you intentionally.

My big disappointment is the Deep Space Transport revision.  I had hoped that the DST revision would position DSTs more or less between T1 industrials and Orcas in EHP and cargo. (T1: 20k EHP, 40k m^3; Orca: 200k EHP, 120k m^3.  I was hoping for something around a geometric mean, 60k EHP and 70k m^3.)  The current proposal does not really do that.  What CCP proposes is to basically remove the cargohold as such, instead giving each DST a 50000m^3 corp hangar.  (The unexpanded cargohold will drop from around 4000m^3 to 1000m^3, so expanding it won't really be worth doing.)  This is a change in the right direction, but really 50000m^3 is not that much more than an Iteron V carries.  The DST is going to be harder to kill, of course.  A lone stealth bomber won't do it, so there is some value to it.  They will be able to fit the new medium micro jump drives, so you have to tackle with a warp scrambler.  But I think most people in wspace, at least, are using scramblers anyway.  It's an argument for putting two scramblers on my default fit, but I'll have to actually see them being used, and used riskily, to do that.

The one thing I do see going for new DSTs is that you can't just bubble them; they can micro jump out.  But this does not seem very valuable, since everyone will have a warp scrambler, and in wspace everyone appears within about 6-8km of a point.  (Warp scramblers turn off microwarpdrives and micro jump drives.)  Sabres will still be a problem.

Overall, you get a ship that has little more cargo capacity than an Iteron V, for many times the cost, and somewhat more survivability.  I am underwhelmed.


  1. I think you should have 4-5 points on your PI hauler hunters anyway. We have disagreed, and will probably continue to do so.

    In wormhole space, doing standard PI runs, I am yet to be caught by a sabre. That said, I fly pos->safe->poco, it has been a while since I landed on grid with any hunter (and the last time I did that, I accidentally warped to planet and not poco so still was 80k from trouble).

    I think the new DST would have solved my problem back when I was doing lowsec PI. Mostly a single pirate in a DPS ship sitting on a gate. But that was before Epithals (and even before I had gallente industrial 5)

    I would definitely consider a DST an alternative to the Iteron V for some highsec afk hauling, being significantly cheaper than an orca or freighter.

    I am also contemplating a DST for hauling P3/P4 from wormhole to highsec, and POS fuel/ice products from highsec to wh; where the value of the cargo suggests it. I doubt it makes sense for hauling P1.

    And I need to learn to say more with less words. or just write on my own blog about it.

    1. I agree that one wants 4 points at least for hunting Epithals and certain other game. On the other hand, doing that gimps the fit for other hunting. So, it's a tradeoff. I am currently still hunting with just one scrambler. That may change though in part because of this change.

      I agree with you that it is very hard for a hunter to catch an Epithal if the Epithal takes more than token precautions. I.e.: I have a bookmark in my system out in the middle of nowhere, but exactly inline from my tower to a lonely planet. When I want to do PI, I warp to there first. Any decent hunter seeing that will warp to that CO. Meanwhile I am warping somewhere else. Then he has to pick me up by basically guessing where I will be, since each pickup/dropoff takes only a few seconds.

      I think there are a lot of possible uses for the new DSP. As you say: they should be pretty easy to passive tank for autopiloting medium value stuff. And even in low wspace, i.e. hauling from a system directly out into lowsec or highsec. But I don't see that much utility for me, that is, living in C4 where every run out to highsec is at least two jumps through wormholes and usually three.

      And yeah, you should blog about it.

  2. You can put a medium neut on a DST which severely hampers someone trying to scram you. With the MJD as well it should be possible to make a fit that won't die to lone sabres/frigates.

  3. It isn't the bridge between a freighter and an industrial hauler that many of us would like to see. It would be nice but I don't think it is the proper ship for that. That will be another challenge.

    What it can do now is move a useful amount of stuff with options not to just die. Making IG scram proof is not going tonfix a thing and would break more.

    1. I never want any ship to be scram-proof. I should be clear that my opinions above are my personal take on it, that is, for my own uses. I think it has a lot of utility for other people.

      Your mention of "another challenge" is intriguing, but I am guessing NDA applies. Perhaps ORE can come out with a few new designs? An Orca-like ship with no command ability?

      Personally, I feel they've already got about four times as many T1 and T2 transports as they need; just abolish racial transport skills altogether and make ORE the only skill for that. As things stand, I can't see much reason why anyone would train anything other than Gallente transport skills.

  4. The 50k bay is a mistake as well, since it allows battleships to be moved into C1 wormholes for sieges.

    1. I am curious: Is there such an issue of T1 WH seiges that this becomes a C1 breaking change? And will they get them bsck out or are they commuting them to that one task?

    2. Sugar, it's not a balance-breaking change right now, because there is no way to re-package a ship in wspace. As Jayne says, you will be able to get battleships in after Kronos, but since you can't get them out it is not economical. However, that inability to repackage at a POS seems like something that CCP really ought to fix. (You know how crazy we WH people are about them fixing our POSes.) If they did fix it, then the ability to use battleships (or more specifically, marauders) economically would substantially alter the balance of power in C1. Right now C1s are relatively hard to siege because they can still use dickstars.

      Mynnna asked me at his blog whether losing that would be bad thing. I think the answer is yes, because in my mind C1 is and should be wspace for newbies. (Newbs at least to wspace.) As such, I want to coddle them a bit, while offering less reward, which is certainly true in C1. And I think CCP has some inkling of this, or at least they used to, exactly as reflected in the mass limits that they created for C1.