Best Level 4 Setup

Hi All,

I’m returning to the game after some time out and am testing the various (and now numerous) ways to earn ISK.

Originally, way back in the day, I ran lots of Level 4 missions and want to give it another go.

Life has moved on well since back then as I was flying a Raven. Now sitting on a lot of very relevant SP I’m keen to know what the best options are.

My skills are ‘old school’ insomuch that I don’t have the Trig stuff (well I have the cruiser). But I do have:
All BS at level 5
Marauders level 5
All Large weapon systems Level 5 or beyond that into 3/4 specialised.
All Missiles (include Cruise/Torps) at 3/4 specialised.
I also have the higher tier target painting at level 4 (if you’re thinkging Cruise/Torps)

Thus I can pretty much max any Battleship hull for these level 4’s.

Thus, given I can SP any ship (lets not talk about my actual piloting skills) what is the best option for me?

Does that option change if I want to do the whole mission vs blitzing Isk/LP?

My standings are very high (around 7/8/9’s) thus I do not need to be famring standings.

Do you need to know anything more to advise me?

My reading has taken me to Rattles, Navy Scorps, back to Golem, over to Machariel and back again to the middle somewhere.

I’m keen, at least initially, not to be flying around in a 3B ship… if that makes a difference.


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Machariel for max isk and blitz. But nowdays isk in burners rather than standard lvl4’s. For fun, any BS you like will do. I personally wouldn’t suggest focusing only on isk. So pick anything that is fun to fly for you.


Unless you just throw X-types onto your hull and bling all the unnecessary parts (like a fourth or fifth faction damage mod), you aren’t going to be flying a 3b ship. Even a Marauder with a B type fit would be around half that.

For blitzing, its the machariel or typhoon fleet issue. You can however get decent results with other nice ships (like marauders and the barghest, rattlesnake, etc). Marauders are in a weird place right now, where their advantage used to be the ability to salvage as you move through a mission faster than anything but a ship dedicated to blitzing, and while you can still do that, salvage isnt worth what it once was, and the ability to drop an MTU by any ship just means that their tractor bonus is now all but defunct (unless CCP sees fit to increase the marauder tractor range further)

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Some options I like, personally:

  1. Cruise Raven: Easiest, you just hang out of range and send missiles. You could probably get away in most missions with putting one of those drinking duck toys on your keyboard and let it hit F1.

  2. Cruise Typhoon: Lacks the extreme range of the Raven, but you have a lot of drone space to play around with. Is arguably better if you get flooded with tons of frigate rats. Looks nicer. You can make fits for both armor and shield tank, depending on what you prefer. (Though the armor tank obviously will reduce your DPS.)

  3. Artillery Tempest: As you have still some damage type control via swapping your T2 ammo back to normal ammo, this is a good option if you want to shoot stuff with guns using an awesome looking ship. You’ll depend a lot on your drones though, with heavy artillery you’ll not even hit the entire barn most of the time, nevermind the broad side of it.

  4. Exotic Tier: Neutron Blaster Hyperion, Laser Armageddon, Laser Apocalypse, Torp Ravens, etc → It works, but has serious drawbacks. Like obviously the Blaster Hyperion only being a brawler, or the laser ships being chained to therm/em damage.

  5. Double Exotics: Praxis, the Trig BS, Machariel, the Big Pan, etc. → Can be pricy, but a nice option if you have the money to spend.

  6. Marauders: Marauders are weird, so I put them last. They’re terribly expensive, and are just the T1 ship, but better. Thanks to CCP being great at balance your sometimes will see some oddities like the Vargur having the obligatory marauder mega tank, but less DPS with artillery than your basic Tempest. Don’t try to wrap your head around this, you’ll get a headache. Only if you have lots of money to spend.

  7. The Alternatives: T3 cruisers work great for Level 4 missions, too! Of course you need the corresponding medium weapon and cruiser skills instead of your battleship skills. If you have the skills, add the following to your list of options:

a) HAM Legion
b) Pulse Legion (em/therm only)
c) HAM Loki
d) AC Loki (looks too ugly to fly)
e) HAM Tengu
f) Blaster Proteus (kin/therm only)
g) Blaster Tengu (kin/therm only)

My favorites are the HAM Loki and the Pulse Legion. Though I’m using a blaster Proteus for PVP/exploration, that be my third favorite if I’d ever use the thing for missions. :laughing:



Thanks for the replies guys. Exactly the kinda stuff I’m looking for.

@Lis_Torin I’m keen on this. I’ve not flown any of the ships I posted above. So, it’s all going to be an adventure.

Ultimately this is to fund some lowsec/FW PvP. So, hopefully, I won’t be doing hundreds, though I guess that depends on how bad my PvP is :grinning:

@Ira_Infernus I’m going to mess around on pyfa again. I think the Golem is still the best option though with the changes to Torps the Barg looks like it could be very interesting.

Every fit I see is 2.5B and above. I get it, the more bling the quicker the finish but I don’t want to drop another half a bill for an extra 20 seconds… if that makes sense.

@Owen_Levanth Thanks for all the option. I’m sure it wouldn’t surprise you to know that Barrak here is also a L5 tengu and the Galente one (cant recall the name) pilot. Minnie… well not quite so hot.

I assume the T3’s can’t clear a room as quick as battleships though?

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T3s are mostly for fun. Clear speed depends on the mission. The more small stuff, the faster you can saw-blade your way through. (Depending on the T3, tiny frigates can be a headache, though. HAM T3s are clearly superior here.)

The strength of T3s in level 4s is that thanks to your smaller signature, BS-rats will have a hell of a time hitting you. Even short-range blaster BS won’t hit you if you start hugging them. I’ve found that afterburner-fits give you more tank options, and MWD-tanks are chancy, but fast.

With my HAM-Legion I basically sleep-walked through the Gallente Epic Arc. Even with mostly only T2-modules, my tank was never really in any danger, but with an afterburner it takes some time to switch from one battleship-spawn to the next.

It’s basically works like this:

Afterburner T3: Slow clearing time, super safe due to better tank, faster orbiting speeds and no sig bloom.

MWD T3: Fast clearing time, sig bloom is a threat on your way to the next BS-rat, orbiting speeds will be slower and you’ll take more hits.

Combining MWD and afterburner is also an option, but I won’t recommend it. You lose a midslot you could easily use better for something else and especially on Tengus, that will hurt.

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Back in the days when I still ran missions, I always liked the Abaddon. Frustratingly hard to fly, utterly cap unstable so that a portion of your rewards went straight up into flames for cap booster charges, useless outside Amarr space, and even there sometimes pressured due to TDs form Sansha and Blood Raider. But watching 8 Tachyon lasers scorch these NPCs was incredibly satisfying.

If you want to have it more relaxed, Machariels or Rattlesnakes are a good choice.

@Zhalyd_Lyehin Ah… You’ve found a hole in my plan. Drones were always my weakness and, sadly, I do not have a signle point in Heavies. So that rules out the Rattler for now… though, that hull is by far my favourte in the game. (I’m ewar specialist and have some fun times in a Scorp)

I think Mach and Barghest are the way forward for me right now.

Anyone got any decent fits?

I think if you are going for pure room clearing ability and are choosing between the Golem and the Barghest, the Barghest is probably the way to go, but only just…

Using the following Barghest fit;

[Barghest, Barghest -PvE- L4 - Rage]

Domination Ballistic Control System
Domination Ballistic Control System
Domination Ballistic Control System
Missile Guidance Enhancer II
Missile Guidance Enhancer II
Capacitor Flux Coil II

Pith B-Type Large Shield Booster
Pith C-Type Shield Boost Amplifier
Multispectrum Shield Hardener II
Multispectrum Shield Hardener II
Target Painter II
Core C-Type 100MN Afterburner

Torpedo Launcher II, Scourge Rage Torpedo
Torpedo Launcher II, Scourge Rage Torpedo
Torpedo Launcher II, Scourge Rage Torpedo
Torpedo Launcher II, Scourge Rage Torpedo
Torpedo Launcher II, Scourge Rage Torpedo
Torpedo Launcher II, Scourge Rage Torpedo
[Empty High slot]
[Empty High slot]

Large Warhead Rigor Catalyst I
Large Warhead Rigor Catalyst II
Large Capacitor Control Circuit I

Hammerhead II x5


  • 2B ISK
  • 1529/886 DPS (Rage/Javelin)
  • 332 Omni Tank for 2m 37s (obviously this can be stretched to 431 against the likes of Guristas with two kinetic hardeners instead of multispectrum). Its a decent enough tank when combined with the AB affording you 535 m/s (so just orbit a gate or an MTU and delete the NPC’s trailing you)

Using the following Golem fit;

[Golem, Golem -PvE - L4 Missions - Torpedo Launchers - Rage]

Caldari Navy Ballistic Control System
Caldari Navy Ballistic Control System
Caldari Navy Ballistic Control System
Missile Guidance Enhancer II

Large Micro Jump Drive
Core C-Type 500MN Microwarpdrive
Pith B-Type Large Shield Booster
Multispectrum Shield Hardener II
Multispectrum Shield Hardener II
Phased Scoped Target Painter
Phased Scoped Target Painter

Torpedo Launcher II, Mjolnir Rage Torpedo
Torpedo Launcher II, Mjolnir Rage Torpedo
Torpedo Launcher II, Mjolnir Rage Torpedo
Torpedo Launcher II, Mjolnir Rage Torpedo
Salvager II
Salvager II
Small Tractor Beam II
Bastion Module I

Large Warhead Rigor Catalyst II
Large Capacitor Control Circuit II

Hobgoblin II x5


  • 2.1B ISK
  • 1359/787 DPS (Rage/Javelin)
  • 1035 Omni Tank for 3min (again, can stretch this further if you fit specific hardeners)

There are obvious operational differences between the two. The Barghest needs to keep moving and you need to plan your way to the jump gate, whereas the Golem can jump or mwd to wherever you want it, and just drop torps without worrying too much about its tank being an issue, but you need to remember to come out of bastion in time to not be sitting around twiddling your thumbs.

Using the above fits, you can rule out using a Barghest with Javelins (as the damage difference between Rage and Javelin is negligible with the rigors, tp, and enhancers fitted already). The advantage here over the Golem is that you won’t have to sit through as many reloads or even need to group your ammo to NPC groups, as you can just throw Rage at anything. To demonstrate;

Using Javelin is a bit more of a consideration when it comes to the Golem, as there is a larger difference in the damage;

and you are applying more damage to cruiser NPC’s with a Rage launched from a Golem than you are a Javelin launched from a Barghest;

Now the Barghest certainly does more damage to battleships (in both ships case the true DPS is reflective against battleship hulls), whereas the Golem is better at taking out cruisers (they are effectively even against battlecruisers so haven’t included an analysis). The thing is though, most HP in missions is made up of battleships, and with salvage being in the place it is now, a Golem is probably slightly outshone by a Barghest.

You could lose a shield hardener on the Golem for a Missile Guidance Computer, and the projection difference in Rage between the Barghest and Golem goes from 43 vs 50 km to 60 km, which could be a consideration to make the Golem more tempting, but is offset by the mobility of the Barghest

The reason many people will suggest the Machariel has nothing to do with the DPS it can throw out (which, really, isn’t “special” (outperformed slightly by a Typhoon Fleet issue in terms of application)

But its warp speed and acceleration. You will be surprised at how long you spend in warp between gates and missions, and being able to throw out in excess of 1300 DPS while warping and moving as fast as a cruiser is pretty good for your efficiency.

So the question comes down to, do you want a room clearing monster with the ability to do a B+ blitz session (Barghest), or do you want a blitzing monster with the ability to do a B+ room clear (Machariel)?


@Ira_Infernus Loving the detail here!! (Its dangerous isn’t it… with analysis like this its to easy to spend out of game than actually in it!!)

I think I’m going to give the Mach and Barg a go. The beauty of Eve is that nothing is ever 2nd hand. I can always sell the one I do not like. Just a damned shame that I think I’ll never make use of the Marauder L5 skill I have.

One day… maybe one day…

If I start with the Machariel and assuming I’m blitzing do I need webs for smaller stuff or do I just let my drones take care of it?

I used to do tons of L4’s… and in a Raven … but I just can’t remember anything about them.

One side question. My standings are really high with Caldari Navy and Tribal. Who’s best to run for currently?


Keep distance and as they approach you kill them with your cannons (do this for the ones who web and scram), otherwise let your drones take care of them (do this for the ones who don’t web and scram).

I know what you mean about the Marauders 5, I am in the same boat, and something should be done, a few of my minor suggestions;

  • having a fittable MTU for marauders (so auto tractor beams with decent range)
  • increasing the tractor beam bonus to have twice the current reach
  • Paladin & Kronos have an extra mid slot
  • Vargur & Golem have an extra low slot
  • an EWAR bonus like the Golem has (Grappler strength or range for the Kronos and Paladin, and a TP bonus for the Vargur as well)
    -or, just more raw damage output (could even make Marauders niche by giving the damage bonus to the long range weapon variants)

But, they are what they are right now, that is, good, but not the best. If salvage was in a different place they would certainly not be out of favour. I think if CCP introduced an additional probability of ‘better’ salvage (in tact/t2) which would be impossible to drop with conventional salvagers, give Marauders and Noctis the ability to fit up to two, and we may see more Marauders on the field.

I’d bet on the mach, barghest, and golem being the current top 3 mission bs hulls.

Mach for the good damage, tracking, and crazy warp speed bonus

barghest and golem for lol torps! Got a great recent buff. Golem 2 volleys almost everything. Have heard good about barghest, but haven’t flown it yet.

How should I be setting up for missions… in terms of locations and factions/corps?

I’m checking my stats and my Caldari Navy and one of their agents is high. My Tribal standings are high but the agents that like me are FW agents (I’ve recently found a couple of SB’s so I must have been running sites).

Should I find just ONE agent and stick with him or do I fing a few together? Thinking about it I am sure that is what I was doing in FW.

Am I right in saying that a high level agent in 0.5 sec will give better rewards than one in 0.9?

First stab at some fits:

Bit concerned about the cap vs tank.

[Golem, Golem fit]

Caldari Navy Ballistic Control System
Caldari Navy Ballistic Control System
Caldari Navy Ballistic Control System
Power Diagnostic System II

Target Painter II
Cap Recharger II
Large Cap Battery II
Pithum C-Type Multispectrum Shield Hardener
Missile Guidance Computer II, Missile Range Script
X-Large Shield Booster II
Republic Fleet 500MN Microwarpdrive

Dread Guristas Torpedo Launcher, Caldari Navy Scourge Torpedo
Dread Guristas Torpedo Launcher, Caldari Navy Scourge Torpedo
Dread Guristas Torpedo Launcher, Caldari Navy Scourge Torpedo
Dread Guristas Torpedo Launcher, Caldari Navy Scourge Torpedo
Bastion Module I
Small Tractor Beam II
Small Tractor Beam II
Small Tractor Beam II

Large EM Shield Reinforcer II
Large Capacitor Control Circuit II

Warrior II x5

Nova Javelin Torpedo x1000
Nova Rage Torpedo x1000
Caldari Navy Nova Torpedo x1000

If you like fun, this is my abby Fit: Abaddon, Solo Mission Runner by Jonny Thunders | EVE Workbench

I take it that is a joke fit and nothing more than poor trolling?


dems fightin words

For me it was the old HRML/Drone boat Dual rep Armageddon.

Cheap as hull. But good tank and has loads of drone capacity and can mount any standard weapon system.

I’ve used mine to solo every lvl4 mission solo and all the faction epic arcs.

Has enough cargo space to hold a good amount on ammo, loot/salvage and an MTU.

I ran 5 sentry/heavies and a mix of other drones, doesn’t have the drone bonuses of the domi, but fitted right you can account for that no issues.

share the fit good sir

If we are talking about joy and experience, on the basis of “good” PvE fits, I tend to disagree with the common statements made before.
As a returning player from way back in ~2013, I find T3 now terribly underwhelming in mission running. Also the Machariel, while still super-speedy, is using up way too much ammo for my taste.
I still love the way a Vargur works, MJD into the thick of it, and insta-gib away at cruisers, killing BS with few volleys.
Proper positioning is key, but finding a good spot is not that much of an issue with a falloff of ~60 and MJD.
I also find the MTU a good extension for the Marauder, as it just pulls everything close, just put a second salvager to good use.

ammo is cheap, I always loved the mach for the extra damage over the vargur, but with the bastion rework I’d probably say the vargur wins in most cases.

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