Thursday, January 05, 2012

Redesign the Eagle Contest - Update

The Eagle contest is still running (remember, with bigger prizes!) and runs until the end of the month. Here is a listing of the current entries I am aware of in no particular order.

1) Ripard Teg (in comment):
I wrote about the Eagle some weeks back in both the rail and blaster roles:

tl;dr: Eagles are under-powered and SLOW.

My conclusions, though not explicitly stated in that piece, are:
* Increase power grid by +100;
* Add a 6th turret slot;
* Remove the missile slots;
* Remove the HAC range bonus, replace with a speed bonus.
* Create a 280mm Railgun module (with associated meta, faction, and T2 modules).

I'm going to go against the grain and say that I like the look of the Moa hull just as it is. Is it ugly and symmetrical? Sure! But it's ugly and symmetrical in a way that makes sense for a Caldari spacecraft. I might tweak the engines somewhat to make the propulsion look more balanced, similar to what was done to the Raven. But I actually like the base hull. It's got a Serenity from Firefly feel to it.

2) Logan Fyreite: From mehgle to EAGLE!

3) Ender (in comment):
From: Tsilo Ralttilo (Head of Ishukone Corporation Security Division)
To: Ekulela Siakkawai (Head of Ishukone Corporation R&D Division)
CC: Landea Vrankef (Head of Ishukone Watch Security Division), Mens Reppola (CEO of Ishukune)
Subject: Eagle Class Heavy Assault Cruiser
Classification: Confidental

Dear Eku,

Since the recent deployment of Naga class Battlecruisers, Hyasyoda had been gaining an increasing market share on the equipment provided to Caldari Navy. Today I have witnessed a discussion among our own troops in Ishukone Watch on whether our Eagles should be replaced with Nagas or not.

As a person with military background I couldn't agree more with the idea(Naga is a damn good ship) but as the head of ICSD I know this would spell the beginning of the end for Ishukone's part in supplying Caldari Navy.

So I joined to the discussion with my subordinates. An hour later we came up with the conclusion that Eagle needs to be revised. Here are the main ideas that came up during the discussion:

* We all feel that Eagle was, is and always should be a sniping rail platform that can reach beyond 200k range. There are 3 basic requirements of being a sniper. Range, Volley Damage and Mobility.

* Right now Eagle is mainly outranged due to presence of BS class weapons. Those bigger weapons can reach further than eagles optimized weapon range. Still, being with smaller signature guns that have higher tracking has its advantages so most of the soldiers were content with the range Eagle provides. There were some concerns about acquiring a lock on targets at 200k. Right now Eagle needs to spend considerable resources to be able to lock on targets far away. The sensor boosters used for this purpose could be changed to more benefical modules, if the onboard targetting system can be improved for both range AND locking times.

* The volley damage of an Eagle at 200k using spike ammo is lower than what some frigates do. What the sniper pilots love doing is making a "Hit'n-Warp" run. Right now it is "Tickle'n-Try to Warp, get tackled and die". I know we are limited to Hybrid weaponry in Eagle. But an optimization of firing timers to provide us with two(three?) consecutive weapon activations with longer(much longer?) cooldown times would be much more desirable on this platform.

* The mobility of Eagle remains a bigger issue. Align times are simply too long. Many of our pilots stated that they would prefer having a faster and nimbler ship to optimized shield resistances. Is it possible to divert some of the shield optimization routines on energy core to engines to prodive this.

* Most of our experienced (read: Old) pilots are complaining that sniping has been dead since Gallente scientists introduced new means of probing. Eagle is already benefiting from its smallish signature. But we believe you guys can optimize our shields even further to reduce the signature radius. We also believe an increase in gravimetric sensor strength will make our ship much harder to scan.

* One crazy guy had an idea we all laughed about. But I'll put it here regardless. It was about the regular cloaking devices. The stealth bombers utilize special subroutines to be able to lock immediately after decloaking. We were wondering if it was possible to implement these subroutines to Eagles. Crazy right? Initially I thought so too. But whatever changes you come up with Eagle, its competitors will be on a different scale and league. This will make Eagle unique again.

* Oh and one other guy suggested something about changing the hull. I've sent him to run solo surveliance runs in Angel an ibis.

These were the main points that came up in our discussion. I know our company has a good relationship with Hyasyoda but if we don't intervene, Hyasyoda is going to be the main contractor for Caldari Navy in a few months. We need to make sure they don't. With these changes to Eagle we just might do that.

Best Regards,
Tsilo Ralttilo
Head of ICSD

TL;DR version:

Increase Base Locking range to 150k
Increase Base Scan Res to 450mm
Increase Damage by 200% Reduce RoF to 1/3. (Same DPS 3 times volley)
Change the shield resistance bonus to a mass reduction bonus.
Reduce Base Signature to 115
Increase Base Gravimetric Sensor Str to 24
Reduce Sensor Calibration timme after decloaking by 100%

The ship hull screams caldari. Bird beak, non-symmetrical. Please don't touch it.

4)  aidenmourn: Talons of Doom: A Re-Imagined Blaster Eagle

5) Justin Cody (in comment):
I'll pencil something up...scan it in to PS and maybe get something resembling creativity out of it.

In the end it has to remain Caldari, so a long range standoff rail platform. The Moa also has missile slots which are not useless but are under-utilized

10% to hybrid optimal range is fine, drop the shield resist bonus for 5% to damage/level, drop the missile hard points...add 6th turret hardpoint and pump up the base grid by 40. The Moa can sacrifice tank in a sniper encounter to hit well and hard.

The Eagle should also have 6 turret slots, give it a 25m3 drone bay instead of 15 on the moa. HAC bonuses: 10%/level to hybrid falloff/level and 7.5% to hybrid tracking/level. This will let its 250's hit well and hard from nearly any range. Make it the long range gunboat of choice for cruisers. 

6) Kitaro Phoenix (in an evemail):
This is my entry the Eagle contest... but it really ended up more as both an Eagle / Cerberus proposal as they share similar issues.

In general I believe that those who are trying to return the Eagle to it's sniper glory really need to let go. That role is now served very well by T3 Battle Cruisers and Maelstroms. I don't think that the Eagle can really be changed to match them.

Instead let us attempt to bring the Eagle (actually Caldari HACs in general) in line with the other race's HACs.

Proposal #1:
HACs with dual bonuses related to range should only have 1 bonus to range. (Cerberus, Eagle)

This will mean they no long are able to shoot missiles @ 180km or hit with rails @ 145km (without any tracking enhancement). This is just fine because they can't lock at those ranges anyway.

On the Eagle the 10% optimal bonus (per level of Caldari Cruiser) should be replaced with a 5% rate of fire.

On the Cerberus the 10% bonus to Heavy and Heavy Assault flight times (per level of Heavy Assault ships) should be replaced with a 7.5% reduction in signature radius.

This gives a close range brawler Eagle slightly more dps than Deimos with mildly better range or similar DPS in the medium long range (30km-80km) role with rails compared to a Beam Zealot.

The Cerberus can do a similar Medium range HAM fit or a longer HML fit doing dps comparable to Pulse and Beam Zealot respectively. The signature radius reduction will give a Cerberus a similar signature to the Zealot and increase it's survivability.

Proposal #2:
Both the Caldari HACs are slow. Increase the Eagle speed by 35 m/s (which makes it comparable to the Deimos/Zealot) and the Cerberus by 15 m/s (comparable to the Ishtar/Sacrilege).

Proposal #3:
Since they are no longer snipers, drones are useful! Give the Eagle 25m3 of space and bandwidth while leaving the Cerb with a token 10 m3 drone bay.

This would make Caldari HACs have the 2nd smallest drone bay instead of the first.

* * * * * 

If I have missed any, please let me know! Remember, any mechanics or sketch entries will be considered.

1 comment:

  1. I got kind of excited about it, so its a little long. Took a bit of a different look at it though. Might be totally off base, but gave it a shot!