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The Four Best Cruisers For Running Missions In EVE Online

Posted Fri, Jul 22, 2011 by Space Junkie

This is a guide to what cruiser-class ships are best for running low-level missions. Many new players struggle with ship choice and sorting the effective ships from the chaff. Luckily, you have us to do that for you.

Ship choice is the biggest choice a player can make in EVE Online, analogous in many ways to choosing a class in other MMOs. When running missions, your ship and modules determine your chances of success: a good ship with the right fittings will have no problems, while deficiencies in either department usually end with an explosion.

The Cruiser Class Of Ships

Cruisers are the middle class of ships. They are larger than frigates and destroyers but smaller than battlecruisers and battleships. The tech I cruisers are good for new players and budget PvPers, while the tech II ships are highly specialized ships that fill a wide range of roles in the game.

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Each race has a good cruiser option for running missions.

Every player is going to train at least one racial cruiser skill, and there is a lot to be said for digging right into that instead of sidetracking into destroyers or tech II frigates. In any case, the best use of tech I cruisers is arguably running low-level missions. They can make mincemeat of level I missions, and can comfortably get through level II missions. Once you get to level III missions it is probably time to upgrade to a battlecruiser, though.

The Four Races

Each player race has four tech I ship options available. Some are niche cruisers, only useful in very specific circumstances. Others have varying degrees of flexibility, while some are essentially useless in their tech I form and exist solely as a platform to base a tech II ship on.

Still, players of each race will want to run missions, and at some point during their careers they will likely do so in cruisers. These are the best tech I cruisers of each race for that purpose.

Amarr: The Maller

Though the omen may be preferable for less difficult missions because of the rate it can burn through NPC opponents, the maller is generally preferable because of its powerful ability to tank damage. The maller can shoot NPCs and repair itself at the same time, in any level I or II mission that is intended to be tanked (note that some are intentionally impossible to resist, and are intended to be run like gauntlets). A well fit maller can even tank some level III missions.

The Losers:

  • Because of its unfortunate capacitor problems, the omen has trouble keeping armor repairers running. This means that it can do some missions but not the long slogs.
  • The arbitrator requires a high skill point investment in drone skills before it is really good, and many newer Amarr players will prefer to skill up elsewhere. It may be a superior option for Amarr players that get into mission running after they have a few million skillpoints under their belt.
  • The augoror is not useful except as bait or perhaps if you are helping a teammate in some weirdly capacitor-heavy situation, and is a strong contender for worst tech I cruiser in the game.

Caldari: The Caracal

The caracal can fit a reasonable tank, with either a lot of shield hit points or actively shield boosting. It churns out good missile damage for a cruiser, which is handy since most early Caldari players are probably doing the missile thing in preparation for using the drake battlecruiser. Lamentably, it does not have an extra high slot for salvaging, but that does not stop the caracal from being the best option here. Your time is better spent running the mission as fast as possible so that you can work on getting to the more lucrative level III and IV missions, anyway.

The Losers:

  • The osprey is a support ship and lacks much in the way of solo capabilities.
  • The blackbird is an electronic warfare ship and does not do well against NPCs.
  • The moa is arguably a better mission runner by any objective standard, but because it does not use missiles it ends up needing skills that most early Caldari pilots will not possess, and will not need or want until much later.

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