Welcome to Jester's Trek.
I'm your host, Jester. I've been an EVE Online player for about six years. One of my four mains is Ripard Teg, pictured at left. Sadly, I've succumbed to "bittervet" disease, but I'm wandering the New Eden landscape (and from time to time, the MMO landscape) in search of a cure.
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Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Fit of the Week: Incursion Bhaalgorn

[Bhaalgorn, Incursion]
Damage Control II
Imperial Navy Energized Adaptive Nano Membrane
Imperial Navy Energized Adaptive Nano Membrane
Imperial Navy Heat Sink
Imperial Navy Heat Sink
Imperial Navy Heat Sink
1600mm Reinforced Rolled Tungsten Plates I

Target Painter II
Tracking Computer II, Tracking Speed
Tracking Computer II, Tracking Speed
Dark Blood Stasis Webifier
Dark Blood Stasis Webifier

Mega Pulse Laser II, Scorch L
Mega Pulse Laser II, Scorch L
Mega Pulse Laser II, Scorch L
Mega Pulse Laser II, Scorch L
Large Energy Transfer Array II
Large Energy Transfer Array II
Drone Link Augmentor I

Large Anti-Explosive Pump I
Large Anti-Kinetic Pump I
Large Trimark Armor Pump I

Hobgoblin II x5
Hammerhead II x5


Fair warning: this is a hugely expensive ship, but is also the quickest door into an incursion fleet in EVE.  It does just about everything an incursion fleet needs, and so is very highly prized.  A well-fit Bhaalgorn advertised as "LFAF" will not be idle for long.  But the skills to fit this ship are  not insignificant.  You can probably get away with Amarr Battleship III, but you'll need good Minmatar Battleship skill and of course, the ability to fit T2 heavy pulse lasers, plus good armor tanking skill.  You can get away with meta Large Energy Transfers until you can fit the T2 models.

First and foremost, this is a DPS boat.  While not putting out the sheer raw DPS of some other possibilities (the Armageddon Navy Issue and the Paladin come to mind), the DPS is very significant: around 600 DPS with Scorch L crystals, or 700+ with Imperial Navy Multifrequencies.  To that, you add your drone damage.  The Target Painter will go a long way toward helping that DPS apply to smaller targets, particularly frigates in incursion Vanguard sites.  Dual Tracking Computers will assist with the tracking issues of such large guns, pushing your tracking close to 0.07, which is fine for a battleship platform (strategic cruisers and the like will track about 50% faster).  The long reach of the Scorch ammo will allow you to hit targets at 40 to 50 kilometers, longer if you trade out for the Optimal Range scripts in the Tracking Comps.  Since the Scorch ammo range is so good, you'll only need to carry Conflag and Gamma in addition to the Scorch and Multifreq.

The most prized ability of the Bhaalgorn in PvE are its long-range webs, and this is where you should spend the bulk of your money on this fit.  Get the best possible webs that you can afford.  Even with average skills, the Dark Blood webs will reach out to about 25 kilometers.  That will be pushed up to nearly 31 with an average or better Skirmish Warfare booster available, which most incursion fleets will have.  Putting dual webs on the tough cruisers you'll be hitting will make their lives short.  Their slow speed and the fact that you'll be painting them means you can use Hammerhead drones if you wish to further increase your DPS.

You aren't quite cap-stable in this fit, unless you supplement with really good cap implants.  That's where the Large Energy Transfers come in.  Pair up with another Bhaalgorn, Armageddon Navy Issue, or Guardian and join a cap chain.  Receiving a single LET yourself will allow you to use one of yours on your partner and make this ship cap-stable.  The second is gravy.  A truly scary sight is a Bhaalgorn trio spidered in this fashion!

Sansha incursion salvage has been greatly improved recently, so I've seen a few Bhaals here and there replace the Drone Link Augmentor with a salvager.  Keep it in mind if you're looking to supplement your incursion income even further.  ;-)

Everything else about this fitting goes into creating a sufficient buffer tank to withstand the Sansha horde, and then giving that buffer good resists.  This particular tank is about 23k armor hit points with unboosted resists of about 70% across the board.  This will be more than sufficient if your Logistics pilots are up to scratch.  If you have any concerns at all, carry a second 1600mm plate in cargo and swap out one of your Heat Sinks for it.  This will reduce your DPS but give you much greater peace of mind.

Of course, a surprisingly high number of incursion Bhaalgorn pilots go ahead and invest in a set of Slave implants to boost the armor tank even further, and very high armor HP skill implants are also quite often used.  The Bhaalgorn is one of the ships in EVE that will pay dividends the more ISK you pump into it, though of course it's an expensive loss if you lose it!  A good fitting will start at around 1.5 billion ISK and only go up from there.

But a frequent incursion pilot will be quick to tell you that it will soon pay for itself.

Fly nasty against those Sansha...

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