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Ramalina
09.18.2014 , 04:13 PM | #292
So a strike fighter build update. I switched GSF mains, the game has changed quite a bit since December 2013, and I'm a lot better with blaster accuracy than I was when I first started playing GSF. These builds are what I'm currently using most of the time.

F-T6 RYCER // TZ-24 GLADIATOR // FT-8 STAR GUARD // TZ-24 ENFORCER

The Ion Cannon and Heavy Laser Cannon strike fighter is one of those things that seems like it shouldn't work, but done well turns out to be surprisingly good. Sort of like a Strawberry-Jalapeno smoothie.

:: COMPONENTS

Primary Weapon: Ion Cannon (T4 Drain Engine Power, T5 Drain Shield Power)
This started as a 'silly' experiment, and I found that I really like them. They instantly and utterly destroy shields. In order to be really good though, you need to be able to hit with a strong cannon to finish the kill. Now that I can do that with HLCs at point blank range I really appreciate Ion Cannons. If you aren't an elite GSF marksman they're still an option. Instead of trying to get the kill yourself, just rip the shields off of as many ships as you can and let someone else worry about getting the kill.

Primary Weapon: Heavy Laser Cannon (T4 Ignore Armor, T5 Shield Piercing)
This is the bread and butter of this build, if you have the option, kill it with heavies.
Shield piercing and Armor ignore for the upgrades.

Secondary Weapon: Concussion Missiles (T4 Increased Ammo, T5 Ignore armor)
Mid range and high power option. If you don't care about hurting bombers and the rare charged plating strike fighter engine targeting is actually a better dogfighting choice.

Engine: Retro Thrusters (T3 Increased Turning Rate)
More time for blaster fire and missile locks and a defensive missile lock break. The clear offensive dogfighting pick.

Shields: Quick Charge Shields (T3 Reduced Cooldown)
Engine boost, rapid recharge, and recharge on cooldown. Together it adds up to a very powerful component choice.

Reactor: Large Reactor
With quick charge shields this is by far the best choice.

Thruster: Regeneration Thrusters
Having become a more skilled pilot, I've dropped Turning for Regeneration. It's a trade of tactical maneuverability for strategic maneuverability. The overall balance of GSF has also shifted substantially, and with scouts less dominant than they used to be I find turning thrusters no longer worth the loss of mobility they impose.

Capacitor: Range Capacitor
Heavy Lasers at 6.9 km are absolutely devastating. The way their accuracy works firing at max range is a good thing and to be exploited as much as possible.

Magazine: Regeneration Extender
The all-around best choice for sustained fire. More regeneration means more laser shots means more damage.

:: CREW ABILITES

Copilot: Bypass (Republic) Wingman or Running Interference (Imperial)
Gearing up new ships I really noticed and really missed shield piercing on HLCs and Concussion Missiles. This was a way to get it back before I had the weapons fully upgraded. On the Imperial side this is impossible due to a critical shortage of annoying Trandoshans. Since you can't sacrifice the pinpointing and accuracy passives, that leaves you with a choice of Wingman for hitting annoying scouts and gunships or Running Interfererence for maybe not getting hit by them.

Offensive: Improved Kill Zone 2 degrees to firing arc & Pinpointing 6% accuracy
These crew members provide the best offensive power to your weaponry. Having an extra 6% accuracy for your primary weapon helps overcome evasion-stacking and allows you to take more glancing shots.

Defensive: Shield Power, Evasion
Standard choices.

Tactical: sensor radius & communication
Strikes need all the detection help they can get. Radius is better than focus as you get to see the gunships to the side and behind you. Imperials might take sensor focus instead in order to get the Wingman active ability.

Engineering: Efficient Maneuvers & Efficient Fire

You want speed and ammo for dogfighting the this give both of those. Efficient maneuvers and Power to Engines is also a decent option.



F-T2 QUELL // FT-6 PIKE

I still run the Pike as a longish medium range missile platform. It centers on getting to a position where it's out of blaster range to lock on with missiles, which means there's a need for speed. I'll spend most of a match with power to engines. At the higher skill levels, you can boost in after getting a missile lock and launch long range missiles from short range. At 500m it doesn't matter if a target has two missile breaks ready to go, they won't have enough time to use them. That's an extremely hard trick to pull off with something like a Proton Torpedo though, boosting in to around 3-5 km greatly reduces missile flight time and the locks are not insanely difficult to maintain on a maneuvering target.

:: COMPONENTS

Primary Weapon: Heavy Laser Cannon (T4 Armor Penetration, T5 Shield Piercing)
I used to run Quads, but now that my aim has improved enough so that I consider trying to take a shot at a maneuvering target at 500m reasonable, I find HLCs to be superior in just about all respects.

Secondary Weapon: Proton Torpedoes (T4 Increased Speed, T5 Increased Range)
I use the first slot so that in default configuration my longest range missile is selected when I start a battle. Silly little quality of life thing. Long range, hard hitting, damage to hulls. Good stuff. If launched at over 5 km you really need to make sure that the target just used a missile lock break or you need to plan on the torpedo being wasted. Once you learn to boost in from a solid lock at 8+ km to release the missile at 3 km or less, the proton torpedo becomes a rather terrifying weapon.

Cluster Missiles could reasonably be substituted into this build based on pilot preference/flying style.

Secondary Weapon: Concussion Missiles (T4 Increased Ammo, T5 varies )
The spammy short range missile. Well for this build. Against a target with missile lock breaks that are on cooldown a proton torpedo + concussion missile combo is fatal to all but the tankiest ships, and even they will be in trouble if you hit them with HLCs afterwards. With a quicker lock on time and a wider firing arc, these are the missile of choice if you loose separation between yourself and your targets. They also hurt a lot. So it's nice to have a lot of them to fire, thus the extra ammo. For T5 against scouts, strikes, and gunships you want engine targeting, against bombers you want ignore armor. If there are ever PvE elements tougher than turrets you might want ignore armor for them, assuming that destroying them isn't a waste of missiles.

Cluster Missiles could reasonably be substituted into this build based on pilot preference/flying style.


Engine: Barrel Roll (T3 Increased Turn Rate)
Creates a gap fast, very valuable in a long range missile platform. Now that I'm using HLCs and consequently firing blasters more often (I can start shooting when I start a Concussion Missile lock) I find that having at least a little bit of upgrade to turn rate is nice.

Shields: Quick Charge Shield (T3 Regen During Damage)
This shield gets taken for the engine benefits. You shouldn't be under fire for long periods of time, so the quick recharge ability should be enough to tide you over until you can disengage. The regen makes up a bit for the smaller size and you really shouldn't be sticking around long enough for it to come off of cooldown even with the reduction.


Armor: Lightweight Armor
Having messed around with the Binomial Distribution, and other black arts of mathematical modelling, I can say with confidence that for short encounters evasion beats the heck out of similar quantities of any other option, and it's more likely to make the difference between living and dying when it really matters.


Thruster: Speed Thrusters

To get in a missile launch position you need to be able to get to the right place in space, and boosting is by far the best way to do this quickly enough to take advantage of good tactical situations. Strike fighters are not especially efficient at boosting, and despite a larger size, don't seem to get much in the way of bigger fuel tanks. So getting a build that can always boost to where it wants to be is tricky. I find that the key to success is in the boost mechanic. It multiplies base engine speed by 3.2. The other thruster options give a roughly 20% increase in boost ability, speed thrusters appear to be worse at a mere 10%, but that 10% then gets multiplied by 3.2. It is very, very good.

Capacitor: Ranged capacitor
I love 6.9 km of range on HLCs. So if I have HLCs equipped I refuse to even consider any other type of capacitor.

Magazine: Munitions Capacity Extender
I've left this stock, but may soon shift to Power Pool Extender. If I can get ammo refills from teammates the extra missiles aren't that useful, and with good power management you don't really need the regeneration extender if you're flying a hit and run style of fight. That leaves Power Pool as the option the lets you get off an extra shot or two before you run dry.

:: CREW ABILITES

Copilot: Bypass (Republic) Wingman or Running Interference (Imperial)
Gearing up new ships I really noticed and really missed shield piercing on HLCs and Concussion Missiles. This was a way to get it back before I had the weapons fully upgraded. On the Imperial side this is impossible due to a critical shortage of annoying Trandoshans. Since you can't sacrifice the pinpointing and accuracy passives, that leaves you with a choice of Wingman for hitting annoying scouts and gunships or Running Interfererence for maybe not getting hit by them.

Offensive: Improved Kill zone& Pinpointing
The increased firing arc for proton torpedoes makes a world of difference. Pinpointing buffs laser damage, you could go for rapid reload instead if you'd rather.

Defensive: Power to Shields & Response Tuning(10% shield power pool, 5% evasion)
The ideal defensive options. Republic gets a choice of running interference or bypass if you take co-pilot ability from this category.

Tactical: sensor radius & communication
Strikes need all the detection help they can get. Radius is better than focus as you get to see the gunships to the side and behind you. Imperials might take sensor focus instead in order to get the Wingman active ability.

Engineering: Power to Engines and Efficient Maneuvers
Pikes do love their boost when working off of a speed thrusters based build, so I'm still running with C2-N2 or Blizz here.


Haven't really changed up my Clarion build at all.
"A padawan's master sets their Jedi trial, Rajivari set mine."
- Zhe Lian, Sage.

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