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Eight Frequently Asked Questions About Combat (EVE Online Guide)

Posted Tue, Aug 23, 2011 by Space Junkie

Once you get the hang of the interface and understand how to fit ships, combat in EVE Online starts to get much simpler. Getting to that point can take a while, though, and we'd like to help you along. This guide answers eight frequently asked questions, mostly dealing with basic combat mechanics and CONCORD.

Is it better to tank damage with shields or armor?

To a new player it might seem as if shields are inherently superior to armor. After all, shields slowly regenerate on their own, without any need for repair modules or docking. If you want to use a shield booster, those are also available. So why bother with shields? Well, sometimes it is, sometimes it isn't.

Which method is better depends on your skills, your ship of choice, the enemy that you expect to fight (whether it's a mission NPC or PvP pirate), and your personal preferences. The most important thing is whether the ship you want to use has a bonus to using one or the other, what its inherent resistances are, and finally whether it has more spare fitting slots in the middle or low slots.

EVE Online

Any time a player asks what is "best" for a situation in EVE Online, the answer is almost always going to be that "it depends."

Shields use middle slots that could be used for many other things. They are also painfully vulnerable to EM damage, a relatively common damage type. On the other hand, they do not slow you down as an armor tank would. I wouldn't want to use a tech one shield-tanking ship against a Blood Raider NPC, nor an experienced PvPer that has had time to load an optimal ammo type. The passive regeneration of shields is pretty good for running missions, though, especially on the ubiquitous drake battlecruiser.

Armor is heavy and vulnerable to explosive damage (like that used by the Angel Cartel NPCs), but tanking with armor uses low slots. While shield tanking is usually a trade-off between utility and tank, armor is almost always a trade off between damage output and tank. Some of the ships that can armor tank end up having really intense tanks, especially against NPCs.

Never hull-tank. No ship has any kind of hull resistances, the only module that affects hull resistances is damage control, which just doesn't cut the mustard.

Is it all right to pod someone in high-sec if you are at war with them?

Yes. A declaration of war is total: CONCORD will stay out of it. You'd be surprised how many people assume that podding is not permitted, though, and let pods escape.

Will the NPC sentry guns found throughout low-sec get involved if I shoot at a war target?

Nope. War targets can fight in low-sec just as easily as they can in high-sec.

Can I fight other members of my corporation for fun, or does CONCORD intervene?

So long as you and your friend are in a player-run corporation, you will be able to fight without worrying about CONCORD. Note that all players begin in an NPC corporation and will return to one if they leave a player corporation without joining another.

This game mechanic has a tragicomic side effect in that it is sometimes used by griefers and scammers. These players will join a player corporation, attend a mining op or other event, then attack and destroy their unprepared allies.

What happens if I remove an item from another player's jet-can or wreck?

According to CONCORD's rules this is stealing, and the player from whom you are stealing will be able to attack you for fifteen minutes afterwards. During this time CONCORD will not intervene, though if the player from whom you steal opens fire on you, you will be able to respond in kind. Until the player whom you are filching from decides to take that step, he is still under the protection of CONCORD.

If I attack someone that stole from me, can anybody else get involved?

Assuming you are a member of a player-run corporation and not an NPC corporation, any member of your corporation can assist you. There is also a limited role that neutral characters can play by remotely repairing shields and armor. Otherwise it's just you two.

How can I avoid getting suicide ganked?

Step one: avoid attention. This means don't run missions in Motsu, don't autopilot through Uedema, and don't taunt random strangers. Step two: don't be a victim. This means you shouldn't carry more than 100mil ISK worth of goods in an industrial, shouldn't fly really flashy ships like a navy raven, and should always have some kind of tank (even on mining vessels). Step three: stay safe. This means you should avoid spending too much time in .5 or .6 security status systems.

How can I reduce lag?

There are a few kinds of lag: that caused by CCP's servers being slow, that caused by your internet connection being slow, and that caused by your computer not being able to process or display the information it receives in a timely fashion. Server lag is unavoidable, especially in large-scale fleet fights or Jita. If your internet connection is causing lag you can use the usual methods to fix that: turn off your torrents, close other applications that may be using the internet, and get your roommates to stop streaming West Wing from Netflix. The last kind of lag is the one that you have the most control over: turn off your turret, missile, and drone effects in the graphics setting options, minimize graphics settings, and remove unnecessary items from your overview. Go through that list and things should be running much smoother.


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