Fitting in (Part 2) Tanks

“OK, welcome back.  What can you tell me about the slots on the Slasher?”  Mike looked out expectantly.

“Um Tops are . . . ”  One students started hesitantly.

“We call em highs, mids, and lows.  But go on.”

“To . . I mean Highs, 4.  Mids, 4, Lows 2”  He said, glancing at his notes.

Mike smiled.  “And what does that tell us about the tank we will fit?  Well before you answer let’s look at the types of tanks possible.  There is shield tanking.  Most of the modules for that fit in Mid slots.  Armor tanking occupies the Lows, Hull tanking . . . well let’s not talk about that right now since it is a thing for more experienced folks and fools in equal measure but for the record?  Lows.  Then come the off tanks like speed tanking, which again takes up mids AND lows or ECM tanking . . . mids.”

He looked about.  “Now remember what I told you before.  This is how I do it.  I do not claim it is the right way or the only way.  If you have a specific task for a ship then you fit said task in first and then let the other modules fall where they may.  But this is a general fitting guide, not a specialization . . . yes?”

“What sort of cases does tank take a back seat?”  The pilot looked curious so Mike accepted the sideline.

“Well,”  He said, looking right at her.  “Gankers do not plan on living so they fit all for damage and maybe enough tank to survive the first salvo from Concord.  Fleet doctrine may call for shields since that is the logi you will have with you or armor if that is the doctrine of the day.  Some miners foolishly, in my opinion, fit to maximize their cargo hold at the cost of any tank to speak of.  External circumstances happen.  Now back to the slasher.”

“The kind of spindly structure that makes a good Gallente or Amarr pilot shudder and mock the duck tape and bailing wire.  Given what we know, what would you guess the tank I plan on fitting this to be, barring any of the afore mentioned outside circumstances?”

“More mids, so shield?”

“Right in one.  Shield tank it is.  Given that it is Minmatar it has a nice speed but we will add to that in a bit to enhance the secondary speed tanking as well.  But what sort of shield tank?  Yeah, there are subsets.  You could go active or passive.”

“What is the difference?”  The young lady in the second row asked.

“Active uses more cap but allows for more choices.  I tend to see more of active tanking in hisec, PvE type runs.  Passive applies a buffer or resists to survive long enough for your friends to save you, PvP combat situations.  This is by NO means a hard and fgast rule but it is what I see.  The exception is the ASB, [Medium Ancillary Shield Booster, Cap Booster 50] which is active but I see them in capsuleer combat more often than the longer grind of a mission runner.”

He looked up at the image and sighed.  “The rules always shift on the situation, which is why teaching you these things I keep reiterating the point that how I do it may not match other sources.  In the end you fly how you want to or by the doctrine of whom you are flying with.  Your ship, your life, your call.”

He tapped a control.

“A fine Gallente Ship.  But then I am always willing to admit to a bit of Bias, in that regard.  Slots?”

“Highs, lows, mids, all 3’s”  Someone from the back called.

“Exactament.  Now how do you decide how to tank it if there is no clue in the slot layout?”

“Put both on?”  Someone asked, Mike made it a point not to look or single them out.

“Ah, I was waiting for that.  Dual tanking.  If one is good then both must be better, non?  No.  Unless your only task is to absorb damage you have other things to do and dual tanking usually means you will do a mediocre job of either one.  After the slots the other place to look for a clue is the built in bonuses for the hull.  Some ships actually do favour one thing over another and building against your own bonuses is seldom a good idea.”

He looked up, “Sadly, neither one has bonuses that send us one way or the other.  The Tristan is

Gallente Frigate bonuses (per skill level):
7.5% bonus to Small Hybrid Turret tracking speed
10% bonus to Drone hitpoints and tracking speed

and the Slasher

Minmatar Frigate skill bonus per level:
5% bonus to Small Projectile Turret damage
7.5% bonus to Small Projectile Turret tracking speed

So we will come back to this when we talk about the offensive but it tells us nothing right now.  So which do you think is best?”

The room was quiet for a moment then the Amarr miss in the front row asked.  “Doesn’t best depend upon what you are going to use it for?”

Mike grinned broadly.  “You just won one of each of the ships we are discussing.  Let me know the name after class and I will contract them to you.  THAT is always the thing.  Best in fitting does not exist without the circumstances of where, for what, for why and budget all coming into play.  Well done.  So what we will do is hold off on deciding tank until we look at some other parts of this one, eh?”



Fitting is fun and I actually enjoy the task of theorycrafting new player fits.  It is a different challenge when they DON’t have a full suite of skills.

But if you have stuck with reading my stuff this is probably old hat for a lot of you.  I just wanted to put this out for the new folks.  Feel free to comment and correct me.  I figure about 2 , maybe 3 more posts to finish this off.

fly it like you won it




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4 Responses to Fitting in (Part 2) Tanks

  1. Algazel says:

    Good stuff Mike. Even if it is basic stuff, it’s the clear and consistent framework for deciding on a tank that’s important. People can adapt to their own preferences better with the framework you’re giving them. o/\o

    Going into some small detail regarding a single ship (like the awesome Tristan!) and building a tank for both Armor and Shield *and* both passive and active would help both newbies & bittervets alike.

    Four fits, four purposes, four sets of opportunity costs, one ship.

    Finishing off with the infamous hull tanked tristan would capstone the project.

    • mikeazariah says:

      The challenge lies in the self imposed restrictions I have set to keep this for ‘new players’ even though few of them even know a blog exists. But that is an excellent idea, to show the multitude of choices. I will incorporate that in posts to come.


  2. Freddo says:

    Concord starts with jamming your ship, and only then fires a first salvo. Gankers use tank if they want to engage under gate guns.

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