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Verain's Avatar

03.17.2014 , 09:08 AM | #39
I play my starguard reasonably standard- heavies, ions, concussion missiles. But my Gladiator... lets call it a whiskey build. If you are drinking Johnny Walker Black, I recommend this ship. It plays a bit like a scout, and you will survive longer than a scout. It is also very fun. I would not claim it is exactly exceptional, except in the strictest definition of that term.


Since you won't remember directional shields, or at worst you will actively redirect them away from the incoming damage source, you should use Quick Charge Shields. Press the button whenever you remember to. Because your shields are always charging, you should quickly toggle to F2 while you are trying to reacquire target, which will be constantly. Obviously, F1 for firing, F3 for if you need to juke or dash yourself into an asteroid accidentally, and F4 because man, it's like, right there.
Make sure to randomly pick a target and glue yourself to it, but try to peel off before minefields and cap ship turrets.
Focus on enemies vastly inferior to you.
Cluster missiles still work even if you are pretty far gone.


This ship is a close ranged combatant. No one told him he couldn't be a battle scout, so he's worked at it hard his whole life. Remember to switch off of ion cannons whenever you want to actually kill anyone, ever.


Primary Weapon:Rapid Fire Laser Cannon (T4 Accuracy, T5 Hull Damage)
When you begin with Rapid Fire Lasers, you will find an underpowered cannon that requires intense skill and a constant bead to do reasonable damage. The damage falls off quickly with distance, and the tracking penalty is not great compared to other short range weapons. It's ok, the Gladiator can't equip those. Make the blasters your favorite color. If that's not available, your favorite color is now purple. Purple is pleasing because it's an illusory color- it's not on the spectrum. It's a glitch of our visual system that some purples look like spectral violet, so exploit this by creating pretty amazing fans of beatiful purple in the vastness of space.

Once you have this weapon mastered, you'll notice that it has bloomed into an underpowered cannon that requires intense skill and a constant bead to do reasonable damage, but it deals 16% extra hull damage and is even cheaper to fire than before, which never mattered and now matters even less. This is easily your best gun. Fire it at everything, and nothing can go wrong.

Primary Weapon: Ion Cannon (T4 Increased Range, T5 Drain Shield Power)

This will strip shields amazingly quickly, and then produce tiny amounts of hull damage, your signal to press the 1 button and immediately repress the mouse button (this ship would be so improved if the firing continued with the new weapon). The ion cannon's damage falls off fast with range, and it makes a really funny noise. If you choose a black core weapon, you'll be distracted by the strange ghost bolts you fire, so don't do that! The ion cannon ensures that no one comes close to this ship without losing their shields. At least, on one side of their ship. Remember to switch off of this weapon when the numbers become two digit! You will really find this weapon satisfactory.

Secondary Weapon:Cluster Missiles (T4 Increased Range, T5 Double Volley)
This weapon is capable of scoring damage even against opponents who use engine maneuvers and do not have a high blood alcohol content, so it's pretty much going to be all of your damage in a typical match, being that your blasters are both remedial. If your opponent is afk or something, your ions will strip their shields in just about the time it takes to lock on and fire this, guaranteeing that all the damage goes to hull, but expect this combo to work out as typed about once a game. Mostly your games will consist of a pretty fan of thirty to forty purple lasers, one of which hits for 200ish, and then a cluster volley, one of which connects for about 400 as the opponent runs away. The devs are planning to fix this glitch, which is pretty much the worst thing ever, as it will be a 60% damage reduction.

Engine: Barrel Roll (T3 Increased Turning Rate)
This engine component allows you to get back into the action, or to catch up to the action after it left, which it often does as most pilots don't want to be around a buzzed gladiator with nothing but ludicrous trolly melee weapons. Every time you barrel roll into an asteroid, take a drink. If you barrel roll INTO cap ship turret range, take two drinks.

Shields: Quick Charge Shields (T3 Constant Regen)
Since you won't do the right thing with directional shields, take these. Remember to run and hide when you take damage, something you do instinctively. You coward! You only need a couple seconds to take these shields from low to max, which is good, because they have the thickness of Trojan Super Ultra Thins. A nice trick is to press F2 when you don't have an enemy under your sites, as the extra boost will immediately begin charging your shields slightly faster- but lets be honest, there's no way you are going to remember that. Just remember to press 2 when you take damage. That should be good enough. You won't die, or at least, you won't stay dead for long.

Reactor: Large Reactor
I mean, why not? What were you gonna pick? You can do the regeneration one, but it takes a very long time for it to outrace the large reactor, and honestly, this ship doesn't need to be any weaker.

Thruster: Turning Thrusters
You're a scout in the body of a strike fighter. But ship roles are just a social construct. Let your inner scout shine through with these thrusters.

Capacitor: Frequency Capacitor
Both of your weapons fire very fast and are mostly for entertainment value instead of dps, and neither really uses weapon power, which you are too hammered to watch anyway. So there's no reason not to take this, which increases the density of the fan of purple fireworks you spew into space by 15%, an excellent tradeoff with no possible disadvantages.

Magazine: Munitions Capacity Extender
You can't run out of anything except clusters and whiskey, so this magazine fixes half of your problems right there. It also counts the pre-double volley number, so it's an even better deal.


Copilot: Scorpio (Sexy Voice, Suppression)
It's clear that this is the superior copilot, because she is a murderbot that gets off when you kill your enemies. There is really no other possible choice now that this has been established. She also offers "Suppression", which is an interesting metagame call in a game that often features pilots of vastly different skills. Ideally, you will put this on an opponent who represents a real threat, as a -25% accuracy penalty is devastating to the few pilots in any match that can actually hit moving targets with their lasers. However, given the playstyle, you probably just press this on cooldown on anything that isn't a bomber.

Offensive: Jaesa Willsaam(2 degrees to firing arc & 6% accuracy)
Your puny weapons need all the help that they can get. Jaesa offers tiger pills that enhance the length of your rapid fire's accuracy and boost the girth of your ion's firing arc. She's also kind of hot so you can picture her and Scorpio up there having a bit of a party, if that's your bag.

Defensive:Writch Hurley (10% shield power pool,15% shield regeneration)
No reason not to go all-in on the quick charge shield thing, right? A bigger shield and it comes back faster, and it's always coming back. Clearly you should ignore that evasion thing. It's too mathy anyway.

Tactical: Scorpio (no clue)
There is no other option.

Engineering:Blizz (10% engine pool, 13% engine efficiency)

The only way you will run out of weapon power using rapids and ions is when you are spinning in circles on a friendly sat with the button held down. That's admirable, but you should instead build towards being able to boost longer, because with nothing but short range weapons, you pretty much are always doing this. Plus it helps you pass in society as a scout, so why wouldn't you?