First we started to see Maelstrom shield alpha fleets that eliminated enemy targets with overwhelming first salvos. However the greatest weakness of the battleships is ships with small signatures and large transversal to make them hard to track, so afterburner-fitted armour-tanked HACs (aka AHACs) became the answer to the Maelstrom threat, a fleet which performed poorly against, you guessed it, Drakes.
But all is not static in PvP tactics and theorycrafting. Quickly pilots discovered that an Abaddon with Mega Pulse Laser IIs sported a huge armour tank and lots of tracking and DPS to rip up both Drakes and AHACs while still having decent range. They were christened Hellcats and their main weakness was enemy fleets at long range like Maelstroms, and the fact that they needed Tech II Large Pulse lasers to work properly (whereas Maelstroms work pretty good with Tech I mods).
Yet the battlefield continues to evolve. Hellcats are pretty good, but are still battleships with the agility of a lame horse and on top of that they are passive armour tanked making them very heavy beasts indeed. So recently Pandemic Legion
Of course, all of these fleet types must bow down to the almighty Supercarrier fleet supported by Titans. This past weekend a battle in Venal was held and, well, I'll let Parasoja tell you:
Yesterday a station came out of reinforced in venal. We formed up about 700 guys and got in system first. When the station came out, hostiles jumped in 154 supercapitals.We can't compete with that, not even close.Something needs to be done to give sub-cap fleets to ability to at least threaten super-cap fleets. Its time for the Deathstrike missile.