Thanks for the update! I like little balance tweeks and I think it will keep the game feeling fresh. A few thoughts on this particular round.
Rifter: I’m not going to lie and say I fly T1 frigates very often, but this looks like a good tweak to make the Rifter a bit stronger, and the slot layout is a bit more logical, so overall, I like it.
Dragoon: Really good change! 2 mids is extremely limiting and I think this will make the Dragoon a lot more of a competitive choice when compared with the Algos. I think there’s a slight chance it may get a bit too good since 4 lows already allows it to have a very impressive tank for a T1 destroyer, but I think the relatively lower DPS will help keep it in line.
Corax: I didn’t feel that the Corax was really struggling that much, but at the same time, this is a minor tweak. Overall, I don’t expect its strength in the meta to shift much if at all.
Arbitrator: I have mixed feelings on this. On one hand, it definitely needed more lock range to be an effective TD ship. However, I also feel like it should be qualitatively worse than a general combat ship like a Vexor at general combat, and with the nerf to the Vexor, and the improvements to the Arbitrator’s weapon layout, PG and CPU, I feel the Arbitrator may just become the flat-out better option than the Vexor in a lot of cases.
Bellicose: I like these changes. The lock range upgrade makes it a lot more viable as a paint ship for small gangs, and the extra fitting space should make shield fits a bit more comfortable and could make armor versions viable. As a shield missile ship, I feel that Caracals will still have the edge as a general combat ship, which is good. It leaves room for both ships.
Omen: While I like the fact that the Omen is getting stronger, I still feel like it’s going to be weaker than a Maller as an armor brawler due to it’s much lower EHP, and weaker than the Stabber and Caracal at kiting/anti-tackle due to its relatively poor tracking and cap hungry guns. I really think it needs an extra mid to be competitive. A 5H/4M/5L makes the most sense, though it would make it painfully similar to the Thorax and Rupture. 4H/4M/6L would be interesting, though it would take some careful tweaks in other departments in order to keep it balanced.
Stabber: I always felt that the Stabber should have better DPS for having 6 highs, so I really like this change.
Tristan: In the same way as the Rifter, I don’t fly T1 frigates very often. However, I see this as a relatively minor change that won’t mess with the meta too much. I’m neutral to it.
Vexor: I feel the Vexor was easily the strongest solo T1 cruiser brawler. I also feel brawling is pretty weak compared to kiting, and the Vexor left a lot to be desired as a kiter or as a fleet ship due to often poor application and severely delayed damage. I really don’t feel it needed this nerf.