The huntman's Astero

Oï !
I’ve recently lost my Cheetah and decided to move away for a bit from CovOps frigates (outside of Stealth Bombers) to look back with a long lost friend : Astero. Basically, I’ve been trying to make some fits as a cloaky hunter, using Mobile Depot to switch between a travel/scanning fit, to a more combat focused one, mainly used to take out whoever could be in my relic/data sites, even other Astero if possible, but I can’t find anything that really please me. I’m always locked at around ~99 DPS, and putting more drone damage amplifier could seriously dampen my ability to tank damage.

I’ve been with this fit so far :

[Astero, Astero Combat fit]

Coreli A-Type Small Armor Repairer
Energized Adaptive Nano Membrane II
Energized Adaptive Nano Membrane II
Type-D Restrained Capacitor Power Relay

1MN Afterburner II
Stasis Webifier II
J5b Enduring Warp Scrambler
Small Cap Battery II

Covert Ops Cloaking Device II
Core Probe Launcher II

Small Anti-Explosive Pump I
Small Auxiliary Nano Pump II
Small Auxiliary Nano Pump II

Hobgoblin II x5
Hornet II x5
Warrior II x5

Sisters Core Scanner Probe x16

I already have the scanning fit done, so now I’m only trying to get the combat one. Do you guys have anything to advise me, please ?

Thanks in advance !

I would take 1 set of Faction Hornets due to their huge shield buffer. They will have more than 1000HP on shield with the Astero bonus, which will be handy.

That fit could be fun, is not expensive and has a logic in it. I quite like it. It can certainly make a hard time to expensive cap charged Astero. But such Astero will probably have faction web and will disengage at will from you in 1v1. Yet you might catch surprising things in that and once you die you will not feel sorry for the loss, since it was quite affordable.

I think that to catch the insta stabbed explorers, Astero need 2 scrams. But then you will not have space for web and you will not be able to disengage when things will go south. Trade-offs.

Have fun !

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I see. So the DPS won’t be an issue ?

Astero has generally low DPS. It certainly is an issue. Damage output is enough for hunting other explorers though.

One example of an alternative fit is here. Strictly non bling on purpose.

[Astero, Astero Combat fit]

Small Armor Repairer II
Reactive Armor Hardener
Energized Adaptive Nano Membrane II
Small Ancillary Armor Repairer, Nanite Repair Paste

1MN Afterburner II
Small Capacitor Booster II, Navy Cap Booster 400
Stasis Webifier II
Warp Scrambler II

Covert Ops Cloaking Device II
Core Probe Launcher I, Sisters Core Scanner Probe

Small Auxiliary Nano Pump II
Small Nanobot Accelerator II
Small Anti-Explosive Pump I

Would you recommend any particular drones for this fit/against other Asteros ?

5x Caldary Navy Hornet
5x Hobgoblin II
5x Hornet EC-300

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Don’t forget combat probes to hunt explorers in safe spots. They sometimes either do not have a cloak fit or forget to turn it on, especially t1’s.

Interesting. However, an Expanded probe launcher would be too heavy on the fitting for a frigate, right ?

You can fit one on an Imicus if you boost the CPU - but not on an Astero.

A Sisters expanded probe launcher will work on a Astero, but doesn’t leave much room for anything else. You need to offline the launcher when not being used or use a mobile depot and switch fits once you’ve scanned down your prey. It really comes down to how bad you want to get the guy and how much loot you think he may have. I have gotten some really sweet kills and loot drops in null and low sec from explorers sitting in “safe spots”.

You’re quite right, my apologies. As a lone module it only leaves me with 2.5 tf for absolutely everything else, but you’ve got me playing with eccentric fits now :slight_smile:

eta: hmm… Throw in a couple of Co-processors and there might well be a viable fit possible - intriguing…

A quick ‘first pass’ on a viable covert combat-probing astero : -

[Astero, Expanded Probe Fitting]
Damage Control II
Co-Processor II
Co-Processor II
Co-Processor II

5MN Y-T8 Compact Microwarpdrive
Scan Rangefinding Array I
[Empty Med slot]
Basic EM Ward Amplifier

Sisters Expanded Probe Launcher
Covert Ops Cloaking Device II

[Empty Rig slot]
Small Gravity Capacitor Upgrade I
Small Processor Overclocking Unit I

Sisters Combat Scanner Probe x8

Plus drones to suit your taste…

Leaves me 1.9 tf to spare. Not exactly a masterpiece of the fitter’s art (I’m pretty new at this), but viable enough to prove Tater-nuts’ point.

You can even do it without the expensive Sisters’s stuff - this fit is about 200 million isk cheaper : -

[Astero, * Cheap Expanded Probe Fitting]
Damage Control II
Co-Processor II
Co-Processor II
Co-Processor II

5MN Y-T8 Compact Microwarpdrive
Scan Rangefinding Array I

Expanded Probe Launcher I
Covert Ops Cloaking Device II

[Empty Rig slot]
Small Gravity Capacitor Upgrade I
Small Processor Overclocking Unit I

Combat Scanner Probe I x8

Here is the only one I lost

Had quite a few Astero kills, and even a couple of cruiser kills.

so, you can fit more tank, and have more dps (between 145 and 150) and still end up cheaper

For lows, you can also go for a dual repper fit, but will have trouble when running out of paste.
For rigs, you seem to want to go all tank, but this is not what you get. Gaining lock speed is worth the trouble so you catch pure explorers faster. Plus you should have more tank in the DCU/DDA variant.
For mids, dual scram will get you more stabbed victims, eventually with one faction scram if you want to catch 4 stabbed victims. Web will not gain you that much but is extremely useful for drones in astero vs astero drones.
For high, since you refit anyway (or pre-scan or have as scanning alt) grab a gun, son. The added DPS is definitely worth it.

Astero vs Astero is either vs Explo Astero, in which case PVP Astero wins easily or PVP Astero vs PVP Astero (as it was in the above case): those can be a pain and, between two competent pilots, could last 30-35 minutes, which of course exposes you to reinforcements. The fight above started as an Astero vs Astero, lasted quite a while but, outcome was still unclear (if I remember well the guy had a one drone advantage but was running out of paste) so backup intervened.

Astero vs Astero was one of my best moments in game. After a longish (30 mins) fight in my mixed explo/pvp Astero, I had to break with ECM drones. Being tenacious, I come back to the fight place with a Rapier and wait a bit. Sure enough the Astero shows up again, I grab him and start killing him at which point… he drops my ECM drones he had picked up and manages to escape.

Mixed Astero will catch you more easy pickings and make money at the same time but is far from ideal.

Thank you !

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You don’t need to tank if you kite. Check out this guy: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NH0RDVlY1GI

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100dps is plenty to gank other explo frigs. Combined with a tough armor tank it’s plenty to kill every t1/2 explo frig in the game.

edit
I like to setup perches about 300 off the sites because the time it takes to warp 300 is about the length of decloak timer. So I warp on to their can from 300 out decloak as soon i hit warp and lock as soon as i land. I also like to use a 3 point scram since most of my targets are stabbed and run mwd. You could just run a second scram or a point and a scram, but that eats another mid plus more cap. You may look into using augmented hobs to squeeze out a little more damage but at 12-25m each that’s a personal choice.

Im assuming this is a hi sec / Low sec ship? an Ab wont cut it in Null sec very well.

I use an ab on my null astero for several reasons. Mainly that in an engagement i NEED to be able to control range if they have guns fit. I can count on the fact that 99% of nullsec pilots feel the way you do and thus my scram will keep their mwd off and me safely at the edge of scram range, or outside of it if i need to gtfo. It’s also fast enough to crash considering you don’t get a sig bloom(delayed locking) when activating an ab plus if they do lock you and aggress on (side a) when you get through to (side b),presumably where you just came from, you’re scott free. I love when explorers fit mwd, i can scan them in 1 pass as they motor between cans. That’s if i’m out hunting in a t3d. That pretty much covers why i fit my asteros with abs instead of mwds.

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Nope, wormhole/nullsec.