People complain about capitals being too OP all the time, and it’s time we got a change to how subcaps vs caps works.
I propose CCP borrows ideas from world of warships, and implements penetration mechanics.
When capital sized weapons are used against sub capital hulls, it is treated as an over penetration, and as a result only 25% of the damage applies.
For balance purposes, HAWs and light fighters will be treated as large sized weapons. However, light fighters will also lose 50% of their dps.
Now, to balance the massive nerf to capitals there will also be a massive nerf to smaller weapons, and an indirect way of giving battleships a role. Weapons that are too small will half penetrate a larger hull, or if the size gap is too much the damage will simply ricochet.
Small sized weapons (Light drones are included) will deal 100% damage to small and medium sized hulls, 50% damage to large sized hulls, and 0% to capital sized hulls.
Medium sized weapons (Medium drones are included) will deal 100% damage versus small, medium and large sized hulls, 50% damage to capital sized hulls.
Large sized weapons (Heavy/Sentry drones are included) will deal 100% damage vs ALL targets.
What does this mean? First off, light fighters losing 25% of their dps will hurt PvE players which is unfortunate. However, the role of a carrier is long ranged attack, and having the same dps as a HAW dread really takes away the role of a HAW dread. Losing 50% of their damage is the tradeoff for being able to apply to all ships AND having a 1000km range. Also, this means that 3 light fighters will actually deal more dps against subcaps than 3 heavy fighters, factoring heavy fighter application.
In essence, capitals will be extremely ineffective against smaller targets, especially supers. Since titans can no longer fit HAWs and supers would only deal 25% of their heavy fighter dps to subcaps.
Since most smaller ships cannot effectively damage capitals and vice versa, essentially you could stay on grid and fight despite capital presence for much longer. It limits capital power against subcaps, but also ensures that they won’t get facestomped by subcaps because they can’t fight back.
Finally, this would be a huge nudge to get people into battleships. Since battleships are the only ships (aside from a few drone ships like the ishtar and orca) that can field large sized weapons, they are also the only class of subcaps that can effectively damage capitals.
Might also be a good idea to split capitals into regular caps and super caps. Medium sized weaponry would deal 0% damage vs super caps, large sized weaponry would deal 50% damage vs super caps, and capital weaponry deals 100% damage vs super caps.
Everyone complaining about how capitals don’t need a nerf:
This is a massive buff to capitals, if anything. Frigs and dessies do 0% damage vs caps, and cruisers and bc fleets would only deal 50% damage to caps and 0% damage to supers. The only effective cap killers would either be other caps or battleships.
Supercarrier PvE would be massively nerfed though, since heavy fighters end up dealing less dps than light fighters to subcaps.
Just because I sold all my carrier characters, doesn’t mean that I have had no experience with capitals. I used to fly a 3x rigged hyperspatial maxcrab poorfit thanatos before the NSA changes, and from my experience mere capital presence makes it hard for subcaps to engage each other. Capitals take too long to kill in subcaps, but have too much dps to ignore. We need some way for subcaps to engage each other on a grid even with capitals. Capitals shouldn’t be the deciding factor for subcapital skirmishes, but they should still play a minimal role.
“I carrierkrabbed for a bit here’s how to fix caps” is the eve equivalent of, say, me walking into an oncology conference and saying, “Aight dudebros, I read the Wikipedia page on cancer and here’s what you guys are doing all wrong.”
Heavy fighters are the main concern, especially their application against battleships. Capital sized weapons other than HAWs and light fighters already have poor application against battleships. However, heavy fighters delete battleships even though they’re made for fighting capitals. The only real change would be that heavy fighters on a supercarrier no longer effectively wipe battleship fleets.
Since fighter damage against subcaps in general would be reduced significantly, capitals are appropriately balanced by having resistances against most subcapital weaponary.
Maybe the title was misleading, but the intent is to make battleships the premier subcapital anti-capital platform, rather than ferox/hurricane/muninn/eagle fleets.
Instead of trying to balance capitals via ever shifting dps tweaks, we address the entire principle of capital ships.
The base issue is that capital ships are combat ships first. Not support and fleet boost ships.
What happens if dreadnaughts gave a DPS boost to sub caps only near them. Carriers something else. @Arrendis has posted some really good Super Carrier and Titan ideas before.
Start thinking about their primary role not being direct combat and you start to solve the issue of skies being blotted out by titans and nothing but titans in a fight while still making a capital pilot feel awesome.
Note for the inevitable naysayers. These are concept possibilities to highlight the idea, not intended to be final or balanced ideas yet. It will take more than 15 sec thinking to balance details.
‘Capital ships’. What makes a capital ship… a capital ship? Battleships come from being the main ship of the line of battle. They’re the evolution of the old man-o-war. Capital ships… are capitals. They’re the command and control centerpiece of the fleet. Battleships in the old days, battlecruisers in some modern navies. Carriers at the center of Carrier Strike Groups in places like the USN.
They may have tremendous combat capability… but the majority of the work in any ‘fleet combat’ situation is done by a whole lot of others.
So we’re never going to have meaningful reform of capital ships until we start approaching them as centerpieces. Supercaps as basically mobile fortifications. Regular caps as command and control centers for subcap fleets.
Trying to find any kind of balance for these things that leaves them as massively distinct from subcaps, but still envisions fleets of capitals… that’s never going to work. It just won’t. And no matter how CCP plays w/scarcity, it’s not going to matter until supers get beaten into the ground… or better, just removed.