Does increasing the range regular drone (like a Vespa) help at all?
I know a behavior of a drone seems to be speed towards an enemy (and often take terrible damage if being shot at, even by a 720 mm turret shooting a hobgoblin), then settle into an orbit while raining fire on the enemy. I guess we can call this the “orbit range.” The drone will prefer to stay in orbit range and fire until it or the target dies. Or maybe this is in fact the “activation proximity” stat? I have no idea.
If the enemy moves farther away, the drone will attempt to maintain the orbit while firing. If the target moves too far away, the drone gives up shooting, goes into chase mode and speeds towards the enemy and does it all over again. Let’s call this “maximum orbit distance” because I don’t know what else to call it.
Also trying to use a Hammerhead against a fleeing destroyer doesn’t really work since it shoots 3 times and then stops shooting when it goes into chase mode. The drone is way too slow when shooting and it doesn’t shoot when it’s in chase mode. I knew light drones are the way to kill frigates, but I’d expect something bigger would be good for the medium drones.
So let’s say I have a drone with an optimal range of 5250m. The orbit range is 2000m. The maximum orbit distance is 3000m. I use a module to increase the optimal range to 5801m. Nothing happens. The drone is either shooting in its optimal range or is going into chase mode.
Let’s do another example. I have a drone with an optimal range of 5250. The orbit range is 2000m. The maximum orbit distance is 5500m. I use a module to increase the optimal range to 5801m. Now if the enemy tries to escape my drone using a MWD, he will take lots of hits since the drone will have no tracking problems and he is within the optimal range of the drone. The drone will rain hurt on him until he gets out of 5000m and then it will enter chase mode.
So in one case, the optimal range of a drone matters because it changes some situations it fights in falloff into fighting in optimal and in the other case it’s useless because it will enter chase mode before the drone is fighting in falloff. Which one is the real situation for actual drones? My corpmates think it’s option B, but it’s really hard to tell since it is distance between the drone and target that matters, not distance from the mothership, something that is 7 km from the ship might not be 2 km away from something that is 9 km.