Ah the joys of a laptop... blogging while sitting on the couch pretending to watch TV with SWMBO.
During a discussion with Darren of the Common Sense Gamer (and awesome co-host of Shut Up We're Talking podcast) I got to reminiscing of the old days when I first started out. While we were discussing my early industry days (making Tech I Heavy Missile Launchers in low sec Placid region is how I started out... that project was a bust BTW) I got to thinking about my progression in combat ships and how I am at the point now where I can fly the battleships of three races decently.
I started out like many Caldari pilots, stopping at the Merlin where you learn the pains of dual weapon systems, then onto the Glass Cannon Caracal where I learned about transversal tanking. After getting the hang of that ship I jumped to the Ferox (this was just before the Drake) and enjoyed the feel of power under my fingertips.
At this point, just before jumping into Battleships, that I diverged from the normal Caldari progression. The new ships were annouced at this point in my Career and I immediately fell in love with the Rokh. Couple that love with a desire to be different than the typical Caldari pilot I decided to train Hybrids instead of Cruise missiles and went for the Rokh instead of the Raven.
That off the cuff had massive ramifications down the road that still can be seen today in my skill plan. Because I went for the long and torturous turret path instead of the seemingly easier missile path I found that after I had gained control of the Rokh and worked up to Tech II shield tanking and decent gunnery skills I now had a good overlay of skills to jump into Gallente ships.
After the first failure of Strife I wanted to do some solo work and as anyone can tell you, Caladari Tech I ships do not shine in that area. But Gallente are better at it and my Hybrid gun skills carried over nicely to blasters on the Thorax and Brutix. Had I carried on the missile route, such a crossover would not have been feasible.
After I had the Gallenete lineup to Battlecruiser sizes at my disposal, I went heavy into Tech II Caldari for the Hybrid ships and specialized ships available there: Heron Covert Ops, Harpy, Raptor. And since a lot of the Tech II Caldari ships needed missiles, especially the Onyx Heavy Interdictor, I went back and trained up some missile skills for Tech II Heavy and Heavy Assault missiles. That opened up using the Drake, Cerberus, and Onyx with good weapon skills.
Then I spent a year training for the Chimera Carrier. I've gone on enough about that task so let's skip that saga.
The great thing about the early dedication to gunnery skills is that it makes is easy to crosstrain to Gallente, Amarr, and eventually Minmatar battleships. Excepting the Typhoon, all those faction's ships use turret weapons and as my quick training plan for the Nightmare demonstrated it is quick and easy to become competant in those Laser and Projectile weapons with all the support skills trained up.
So after the Carrier I got Gallente Battleships for the Dominix; now I have Amarr battleships for the Nightmare but the Armageddon and Abaddon both look very apetizing, as well as the Apocalyse for remote repping circumstances. With another couple weeks of effort I could sit in a Minmatar Maelstrom battleship and fire 1400mm artillery with ease. Had I done extensive Cruise and Torpedo training my battleship class weapons skills would not be so transferable.
So now I'm back to Caldari Tech II ships, Nighthawk command ship, maybe Logistics cruisers and then the Vulture after that. But you know, training for Tech II Gallente, Amarr, and Minmatar frigates and cruisers is not that hard...