When it comes to fitting a ship for PvP (or indeed, PvE), there are certain tried and true ways to go about it. Looking at the triple rep Myrmidon or arty Hurricane Fleet Issue
Let’s just take a moment and forget all of that though, a ship is just a ship and you can fit whatever you like in those slots. Sometimes being a special snowflake and doing something wildly off-meta can really pay off. Gorski ran a similar, interesting piece not too long ago, but here we’re going to get a little bit freakier.
The Short-Armed Nurse
Starting off with one of my favourites, we have the seldom used logistics Maller. In this age of zippy, low sig Deacons zooming around everywhere, doing exactly the opposite is still an effective tactic. This is how you do that:
It looks a little silly at first, but the premise behind this is looking so much more engageable than a gang with an equivalent amount of actual logi. Sprinkle a few of these into a T1 armour fleet with a solo frigate logi to throw people off and suddenly you’re tanking 2-3k more DPS/s than an opposing FC thinks. It turns your humble armour Vexor gang into a unkillable battleball that fleets whelp into.
I’ve had success myself running with Ruptures and Mallers. To anyone else it looks like a scrubby Ruppy fleet where some people just didn’t have the skills to fly doctrine. You find that anything from assault frigate gangs to trios of battlecruisers want to have a go at you, thinking that you’re the fleet equivalent of a lost and helpless puppy.
This isn’t to say that everyone should drop their logistics wing in favour of Mallers, they certainly do have their downsides. For one, their incredibly short rep range means that any fleet utilising them has to ball up together on an anchor; even getting stranded on the other side of a gate can be enough to get a ship killed in such a fleet. Additionally, while passive cap regen fits are possible, this one relies on cap boosters which limits your effectiveness on long roams or extended fights. You have to be careful with these fits, but using them right is a great way to generate gf’s in local.
The Witch Doctor
On the other end of the fitting spectrum, we have the practice of using logistics platforms as surprisingly formidable solo PvP boats. Typically, you’ll see an Exequror as the ship of choice here, but fitting the theme of being different, we’ll take a look at the plain old Scythe. In the spirit of the new Asklepians having been released, here’s the armour version:
The Scythe is a fantastic choice for engaging ships larger than itself. Even though it’s tank is only that of a cruiser, it packs such a small signature that it slides under the guns of most other cruisers with ease. The meager 230 DPS it puts out isn’t much of an issue either, as it will (eventually) get the job done in the same way that most smaller ships do. A large part of your strength as a Scythe is attributed to the fact that you are extremely formidable as a scram-kiter. Having the flexibility to move in close under a ship’s guns or to pull range away from rockets/blasters can open up your engagement profile massively. Combine these abilities with a tracking disruptor and you’ll be able to whittle away at even the strongest buffer tank without taking as much as a scratch of damage, embarrassing anyone who dares engage you.
You can push this idea further and apply it to T2 logistics if you’re in the market for spending ISK. Take this Scimitar for example:
Following the same ideas set out previously, the Scythe’s big sister brings so much more to the table. The Scimi has an amazing tank thanks to that T2 resist profile and a good chunk more DPS; it’s almost a wonder that this isn’t a regular combat cruiser. Looking again at the tiny signatures that these ships get, you can really take advantage of that base 65m and bring it down further with links/drugs/implants. Play your cards right and this Scimi will be dodging bullets as if it’s orbiting a stormtrooper.
The Flak Cannon
Moving up to the world of battleships, this is the fit you bring out when you feel like introducing frigate gangs to the dumpster:
This small pulse Maelstrom hopes to accomplish what a grapple alone cannot. Having 8 turrets and several flights of light drones lets you tackle even the tiniest of afterburning frigates and reduce them to salvage with over 500 DPS. Switching to Scorch also means applying perfectly out to 15km, far enough to clean off scrams before MJD’ing out. Sure, you could use an 800mm autocannon Maelstrom from more deeps, but check out this fun graph of a Comet orbiting close:
Can you see the battleship gun damage? Me neither. In fact, the 800mm autocannons don’t start applying well until they face off against slow cruisers and even a Caracal can get under the guns without a prop! That’s all fine and dandy if you want to die a slow, frigatey death. Instead, I’d recommend bringing this pulse laser beast to the party and saying “no” to the frigate menace terrorising lowsec.
It goes to show that there are a lot more options than you think when it comes to fitting, sometimes you need to let go of the rules and just play around. Just because a Hurricane has a projectile bonus doesn’t mean you can’t fit lasers, indeed, for a while before the 2015 buff that was quite the valid tactic. This isn’t to say that you should fit anything to anything, but sometimes the stars align and produce quite the interesting fit. Try something new, give your fits a chance!