For those not aware, skynetting is the practice of having carriers and supercarriers in tether range of an anchored structure and then sending their fighters out into battle.
Due to the ability to abandon fighters and tether (after just a 1 minute delay) or jump out (immediately) combined with PDS on the structure, etc. the risk to those carriers is extremely low while the reward is very high.
I propose two simple changes to carriers that do not make the mechanic impossible but do increase the risks and prevent doing it for an extremely extended time. Neither of these should require huge amounts of development effort.
- Supporting fighter wings should take cap, that cap usage should scale with distance from the carrier.
At 0->100km the drain would be insignificant. At >500km it would be considerable. At >1000km it would be very large.
This would have no effect on fighters that are engaging nearby targets - but would cause carriers skynetting from a distance to either adjust their fit or not be able to support their fighters (options for the fighters if you cap out include automatically recalling or abandoning them, or possibly entering an idle state) and make it much harder for them to always be at jump cap while skynetting any distance.
Capital ships should have a longer weapons timer than 1 minute (5 minutes perhaps?) before they can dock.
Bonus change: Right now carriers have no weakness, they can engage anything from frigate through to citadel in size. I’d like to see a nerf to SS fighter tracking, and then an additional bonus to tracking but only vs other fighters. So in fighter-v-fighter they keep their current role but vs other ships they aren’t the ultimate swiss army knife.
I’m a newbie at carrier fights from the carrier perspective, but these are my thoughts:
I agree that carriers can have high impact in fights with minimal risk, when they camp a gate with fighters while sitting safely within tether range of a structure hundreds of kilometers away, ready to abandon fighters or jump out in case anything dangerous happens.
Not sure yet if I agree with the execution - the increased cap usage for having fighters at range.
Carriers with their huge targeting range and projection through their fighters are supposed to be effective at such large distances across a grid and a large cap drain may stop carriers being able to do so, not only when camping gates but also in large fleet fights or fighting a structure from range.
I think the main issue is not the range carriers can fight at, but the ease at which they get back to perfect safety while in the middle of a fight. A fix that addresses that safety would have my preference. Your second point (longer weapons timer for capitals) is a good example of that!
Im mixed on this considering the effort required to establish and maintain a structure on a contested grid. Its easy to look at them as “low risk” on an individual level but not so much on the big picture side. There are some areas where it is a bit broken. Particularly with gate camping but they really aren’t all that common.
How would one contest a grid if the main entrance (gate) is in the middle of that contested grid next to the structure with all the carriers in tether range?
In the bigger picture, these mechanics give defenders with a structure on grid a huge advantage over any attackers as the carriers have minimal risk while covering the gate.
They were always meant to, and this isn’t a bad thing. And it’s not like the can only use carriers. If they did ecm would shut them down hard.
It’s not a bad thing that structures allow the defenders an advantage.
It may be a bad thing when that advantage means minimal risk.
The structure alone represents risk.
Not when the structure is defended by those same carriers that make use of the fact that they can fight from tether range.
Again if it’s just carriers a handful of ecm ships negate them completely.
I see no real reason to change the current system.
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