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Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Guide: Overheating

Introduction and Definition

"Overheating" is defined as the action of "removing heat safeties" from the active modules of your ship and thereby allowing them to overload.  The process is analogous to over-clocking a gaming computer's processor or video cards for increased performance.  This overloading operates on different modules in different ways, but usually makes the modules either more directly effective, or causes them to cycle more quickly.  Overheating can only be used on active modules: those modules that are actively engaged by pressing an F-key.  Passive modules cannot be overheated, but can suffer from the results of overheating.

Overheating modules is most often done in PvP combat scenarios for the purpose of gaining advantage over one's opponent or opponents during a fight.  However, overheating can also be strategically used in PvE scenarios to either protect fleet-mates or provide advantage.

Overheating is not without its disadvantages, though!  Doing so can potentially cause damage to your ship's modules, that can only be repaired with a special type of consumable resource called Nanite Repair Paste, or while docked in a station.  And these repairs can be quite expensive.  Even worse, if you overdo it while overheating, you can cause one or more of your modules to "burn out".  When this happens, you cannot repair these modules until the next time you dock in a station with a repair shop...

This guide will teach you the ins and outs of overheating, and how to use it wisely.

EDIT (31/Jan/2012): This guide was originally published on 6 Dec 2011 but was updated to include information from this errata, and to reflect changes introduced to EVE Online in the Crucible 1.1 patch.

Term Definitions

You will hear many terms used that are associated with overheating, and a close examination of those terms will be useful before delving into the topic of overheating itself.

Overload bonus: This is the bonus that is provided to the module when it is overheated.  Different modules have different types of overload bonuses.  For the purposes of this guide, I will consider six types of modules that can be overheated:
  • Propulsion;
  • Weapons;
  • ECM and ECCM;
  • Propulsion Jamming;
  • Defenses; and,
  • Transfers.
"Propulsion" mods are MicroWarpdrives and Afterburners.  The definition of "Weapons", "ECM", and "Propulsion Jamming" should be obvious.(1)  "Defenses" comprise only active defenses on a ship, as passive defenses cannot be overloaded.(2)  "Transfers" comprise any high slot module that transfers or dissipates capacitor, shields, or armor that is not a weapon, or any mid- or low slot module that actively repairs capacitor, shields, or armor.  Examples are Shield Boosters, Cap Boosters, Energy Neutralizers, Shield Transporters, and Energy Transfers.(3)

The effects of the overload bonus on each type of module are as follows:
  • Propulsion: causes the overloaded propulsion module to propel the ship more quickly.
  • Weapons: causes the overloaded weapons module to either cycle more quickly (thus increasing rate of fire and damage) or simply do more damage.
  • ECM and ECCM: causes the overloaded ECM/ECCM module to have a higher strength, and therefore, a higher chance of jamming the sensors of the target vessel (for ECM) or a higher chance of preventing such jamming (for ECCM).
  • Propulsion Jamming: causes the overloaded jammer to have a longer range.
  • Defenses: causes the overloaded defensive module to create a higher resistance percentage, and therefore, a higher overall resist for the vessel.
  • Transfers: causes the overloaded transfer module to cycle more quickly, thus having its intended effect (and cap use, if applicable) more quickly.

Heat Damage rate: This is a numerical figure representing the amount of heat damage a module is likely to take per cycle.  Higher numbers represent a higher likelihood of the module receiving heat damage.  Propulsion mods typically have the highest Heat Damage rate, followed by ECM and Propulsion Jamming modules and some types of Transfers, followed by Weapons, followed by Defenses, followed by all other types of modules.

Heat Emission rate: This is a numerical figure representing how likely it is that overheating this module will affect surrounding modules.  Propulsion mods have far and away the highest Heat Emission rate.  Tech2 modules quite often have a higher Heat Emission rate than Tech1, meta, and faction modules, representing their "more delicate" fabrication requirements.  Emission of heat damage from overheated modules tends to spread to "nearby" modules.  This will be discussed further in the "Arranging your modules" section of this guide.

Hit Points: Much like your ship itself, each module has a certain amount of hit points associated with it.  Heat damage will be taken from these hit points until the module has none remaining, at which point it is considered "burned out" (see below).

Heat Sink: An off-line or missing module in a rack can operate as a heat sink, reducing the Heat Emission of overheated modules around it.  The specifics for this will be discussed in a later part of the guide.

Burnout: A burned out module represents one that has taken so much heat damage that it is no longer able to function.

Paste: This term refers to "Nanite Repair Paste", a player-produced item that can repair heat damage.  The use of Nanite Repair Paste will be covered later in this guide, under Repairs.  For now, it should be noted that Nanite Repair Paste can repair damaged modules, but cannot repair burned out modules.  It will referred to as "paste" hereafter in this guide.


This guide assumes that you have a solid familiarity with the standard use of EVE modules of the six types that can be overheated.

Before you undock

Before you can begin to use overheating, you will first need to train the Thermodynamics skill.  This is a rank 3 Science skill that has Engineering V, Energy Management III, Engineering III, and Science IV as prerequisites.  Each level of Thermodynamics reduces the Heat Damage rate for all modules by 5%, but does nothing to mitigate the Heat Emission rate.  Before using overheating in PvP, it is very typical to train Thermodynamics to at least level IV, though training it to level V is not uncommon.  Thermodynamics has two support skills, both of which will be discussed in the "Repairs" section of this guide and do not assist or have any impact on overheating in practice.  For use exclusively in PvE, training Thermodynamics to Level II will be sufficient.

If you do not have Thermodynamics trained to at least Level I, you will not be able to use overheating at all!

If you intend to use overheating on a ship, it is a smart idea to carry a quantity of Nanite Repair Paste in cargo.  Its use will also be discussed in the "Repairs" section of this guide.  For all practical purposes, paste can be considered a type of Charge, and therefore, a ship with paste in cargo can be transported in Courier contracts or via a Carrier without restriction.  It is not required that you remove paste from a ship's cargo hold before it can be shipped in this fashion.

A good rule of thumb for the amount of paste to carry is that frigates should have 100 units available, cruisers and battle-cruisers 200 units, and larger vessels 300 units.  "Nano", "dual prop", and "skirmish" ships -- in other words, ships that intend to frequently operate at high speed, using evasive tactics -- should carry an additional 100 units of paste over and above the rule of thumb amount.  Those with larger bank-rolls will provide this paste for all of their vessels.  Other pilots will be forced to draw from a communal bank of paste for all their ships, returning any unused paste to the bank when the ship is re-docked.

If you frequently use over-heating, it is a smart idea to right-click your ship before undocking and select "Get Repair Quote" to determine if there has been any heat damage done to the vessel that you may have forgotten to repair.  Nine times out of ten, it will be less expensive to use a station's repair services (particularly if you are part of a sov-holding alliance in an owned station, and these repairs are free) to repair heat damage that might have been inflicted on your vessel.  This rule is also worth keeping in mind if you primarily fight in NPC low-sec or null-sec; it will sometimes be cheaper for you to wait for the fleet's next docking opportunity to effect repairs rather than use up expensive paste.

There is one other critical factor that is an important consideration if you intend to overheat frequently that needs to be taken care of before you undock...

Arranging your modules

As noted above, damage to overheated modules is not limited only to those modules that are overheated.  Each module has a Heat Emission rate which will define the likelihood that heat damage will spread from module to module within the rack.  Heat emission damage will tend to spread to modules that are "next to" the overheated module within the rack.  While many players will instinctively want to group like modules together when fitting their ships, it is extremely advantageous to those that wish to overheat to not do this, and to separate active modules from each other.

For instance, in the ship fitting to the left, it is quickly noticeable that the propulsion module is separated from other active modules by a passive shield extender module.  In addition, the two Invulnerability Field modules (with relatively high Heat Emission ratings) are separated from each other by the Heavy Capacitor Booster (which has a lower Heat Emission rating).  In this case, the advantage here is two-fold, because the Cap Booster module is unlikely to be overheated, while the Invulnerability Fields very well might.

The fitting is not as "pretty" as it otherwise might be with the Invulnerability Fields placed next to each other, but it is more effective this way.

A close examination of the high slots will find two similar strategies being used.  First, the fitted guns are Tech2, with high Heat Emission rates, but the weapon groups are separated by the Energy Neutralizers, which have lower rates.  If you look even more closely, you'll see that the weapons themselves are grouped into two groups of three, and these weapon groups are themselves isolated from one another.  The specific advantages of this will be explained later in this guide, but for now, it's worth noting that if weapon group 1 is overheated, the Heat Emissions from these guns will impact the neuts and the guns in weapon group 2, but will not reinforce (and therefore, further magnify) the Heat Emissions from the other guns in group 1.

That said, be careful about overheating guns or missile launchers positioned near critical modules, even with lower Heat Emission rates, like cloaking devices and probe launchers.  These mods are particularly susceptible to heat damage and can be rapidly damaged or burned out if the guns around them are overheated too much.

This particular ship has no active modules in the low slots, but if it did, then it would be smart to surround those active modules with the many passive modules among the low slots in the same way.  Armor Triage Carriers, for instance, often carry two self-reps in their low slots.  These two self-reps should be placed on close to opposite ends of the low slot rack, so that their Heat Emissions will affect the modules around them instead of each other.  Again, it's not quite as pretty and the human mind will rebel a bit at this enforced separation, but it is to the pilot's advantage.

It's been stated by the game's devs that heat damage will tend to "wrap around" from the "first" module in the rack to the "last" module in the rack, and vice versa.  However, in actual practice, I have found that this is usually not the case.  As a result, I generally recommend that the two modules with the highest Heat Emissions and Heat Damage factors be placed on opposite ends of the rack.  If there is plenty of room in the rack (such as the example of the low slots of the Triage Carrier above), you can hedge your bets a bit by placing a mod or two between the active mod and the edge of the rack.

Of course, there's no need to deal with all of these scrambled modules once you're using them in space.  After you're undocked, feel free to rearrange the modules to suit your own visual style and F-key preference by dragging and dropping the modules into the appropriate slots.  However, do try to keep track of the placement of identical modules.  For instance, in the example Tempest fit, I'm always very careful to make the last Invul the one closest to the capacitor circle so I know which one to overheat first.

Pilots have a saying: "90% of a good landing is preparation."  In much the same way, I'd say that at least a third of the advantage from overheating comes from smart management of your module arrangement, so don't neglect this step!

Overheating for beginners

Once you've done your preparations, undock.  The interface for overheating is currently (as of Crucible 1.01) quite horrid.  But as of Crucible 1.1, there was a significant improvement to how overheating can be done.

Overheating is managed through the use of buttons shaped like green arcs associated with each module on your ship that can be overheated, shown in the picture above.  In this example, the guns, afterburner, and active armor repper can be overheated.  The dual Overdrive modules, as passive modules, cannot.  Note that passive modules can take damage from nearby active modules, as the left Overdrive module has in this case.  Passive modules can be burnt out just like active modules if they take enough Heat Emission damage, so keep that in mind!

Not every active module can be overheated.  Only if the active module includes that green bar can that module be overheated.  As an example, Damage Control modules cannot be overheated.

Let's switch to another ship and remove the passive modules from view.

The UI also includes three very small buttons to the left of each rack that confer the ability to overheat the entire rack.  The logo on the button refers to the standard symbol for each type of module, high, mid, and low.  The game will intelligently determine whether you are already overheating every possible module and might preemptively light this button to show it to you.  For instance, if you were to press the green overheat arc button for the armor repper in this fit, the low slot overheat button would also light because that is the only active module in the low slots.

Prior to Crucible 1.1, it was required that you click those tiny green buttons to use overheating.  More than once, you will intend to click one of these tiny, tiny buttons and fail to do so.  Prepare for a lot of frustration and aggravation with the overheating UI.  As an alternative, you can also program hot-keys to overheat individual modules, and many pilots do so.  As of Crucible 1.1, there is another new alternative: you can hold down the Shift key while clicking the module you wish to overheat.  This is usually much superior to trying to click those tiny green buttons or work with individual hot-keys, but those options remain as well.

Once you begin overheating, that overheating will not commence until the start of the next cycle of the overheated module or modules.  In much the same way, when you click the button again to cease overheating, the module will continue to remain overheated until the current cycle of that module is completed.  The green button will flash to indicate that the module is going to cycle on or off of overheating during its next cycle.

As you overheat modules, you will see the remainder of the ring around the affected module flash in pale red at the end of each cycle.  At the end of this flash, if damage has been sustained by modules in the rack, that damage will be reflected by a growing red ring that will surround the module.   As the module takes damage, you can hover over it to see an exact damage percentage.  This red ring will start from the upper left hand portion of the module and grow counter-clockwise until every grey part of the ring has changed to red.

When and if that happens, the module will be burned out.  Burned out modules will not operate in any mode, overheated or non-overheated.  Let me say that again: burned out modules will not operate.  If you burn out a module, that's it for that module until you dock up for repairs.  You will no longer be able to operate that module in any way.  It is therefore very important to carefully manage and control your use of overheating.

As you overheat the modules in a rack, you will begin to notice red appear in the half-circle ring above your capacitor display.  This half-circle ring is divided into three sections reflecting the overall heat state of your low, mid, and high slots respectively.  Overheating modules in one rack does not affect modules in another rack.  As the Heat Emissions affecting that rack grow, a small needle will move from left to right in that part of the display, and the display itself will slowly turn red.  This reflects the retained heat in that rack.  Heat is very quick to accumulate and slow to disperse after overheating is complete.  The more red showing in that display, the more Heat Emissions affecting that rack and the more likely it is that heat damage will occur to modules in that rack.

And since that retained heat remains, affecting that rack for some time after overheating is complete, it is very possible to take Heat Emission damage to a module after only a single cycle of overheating several minutes after the previous use of overheating is complete.

It is therefore very important to be judicious in your use of overheating: the more you overheat, the more you will damage your ship.  There are two rules of overheating in PvP scenarios, and you'll have to find the proper balance between them:
  1. Overheat early, overheat often.
  2. Overheat only at critical moments.
Let's talk about each.

Overheat early, overheat often

Overheating confers tremendous advantage in a PvP combat scenario.  Take the Tempest fit above.  Under normal, non-overheated circumstances, that Tempest fit does 730 DPS in the hands of an excellent pilot... not inconsiderable damage!  However, overheat all guns and DPS increases to more than 840, a 15% increase.  This increase is far more than can be achieved through implants or other means.  However, the Tempest can only keep that level of overheating up for about 80 seconds.  After 80 seconds, every gun on the ship will burn out.

This 80 seconds is already better than it would be otherwise: had we not separated the guns using the neuts, the very same Tempest can only overheat for 65 seconds.  So some of our job has already been done for us.

Still, 65-80 seconds is an eternity in fleet combat.  Many ships can be destroyed during that time.  In fact, the critical moments of a PvP combat are often over in 30 seconds or less.  This allows the Tempest to overheat during those 30 seconds with a quite acceptable safety margin.  The trick is judging when those 30 seconds have come, but an experienced PvP pilot will often recognize when those moments have arrived (and we'll talk about a few of them in the next section of the guide).  It is also extremely rare to have a long PvP fight.  Many PvP fights are started, happen, and are won in only a few minutes time.  But those few minutes can be separated from other PvP combats by many minutes.

This leaves an experienced pilot with plenty of time to overheat guns for one fight, let them cool down and repair them during slack time between engagements, and then overheat again for the next fight.

In point of fact, I can say with a good deal of assurance that there are far more times that I wished I'd overheated modules for a critical 30 seconds than there are situations where I wished I'd hadn't.  Burning out modules is actually pretty rare.  So, overheat early, overheat often.  When in doubt, go ahead and overheat.  But let's look at the other perspective...

Overheat only at critical moments

Adrenaline pumps during EVE combat.  And when the adrenaline is pumping, it is quite easy to overlook aspects of the game that are literally right in front of your face.  This certainly includes the tiny, tiny UI elements associated with overheating.

Every single part of the UI for overheating, if they were all grouped together, would probably fill a GIF of 150 pixels square... no bigger than a postage stamp.  And that postage stamp is scattered across two different locations, probably on a quite large monitor.  Once you start overheating, in the adrenaline and stress of combat, it's very easy to forget that you've done it.

Burned out modules are the result, often followed by the destruction of your ship.

Even if you don't burn out your modules, excessive overheating can be very costly.  Repairing damage from a single overheating binge can easily run more than one million ISK.  If you're spending that amount of ISK in every fight, that can quickly become unsustainably expensive.  Even if you can afford it, it's hard to carry that much paste in cargo, and doing so risks giving your enemy quite a windfall if you get destroyed with it aboard.

As a result, it is not at all a dumb idea to save overheating for critical moments, or for critical modules.  If your fleet is light on dedicated tacklers, for instance, the extra 20% range provided by an overheated point or Warp Scrambler can be vital.  If a target has jumped into your fleet and is attempting to burn back to the closest gate, the added damage from overheated guns can destroy him before he reaches it, or faster cycling neutralizers can cap him, his defenses, and his propulsion mod before that happens.  If a buddy is under extreme duress and you are sitting in a Logistics ship, the faster rep cycle provided by overheating can be vital to his survival.

So don't hesitate when that critical moment comes.  But you can safely save overheating for critical moments.

Advanced overheating

The true professional will learn how to balance these two competing factors.  The simple fact is that overheating is simply not worth it for every single situation or engagement.  Still, tactical overheating of modules can make a big difference during a fight.  There are also some tricks of the trade that will help you maintain this balance.

First, during the fitting section, I mentioned the two gun groups on our example Tempest.  It is quite acceptable and quite possible to overheat only a single gun group.  This doesn't provide the full 840 DPS, but does increase DPS from 730 to 785... not bad at all!  And if you are quick and deft with your mouse, or have the proper hotkeys set up, you can overheat one gun group for a cycle or two, shut it down, let the guns run in standard mode for a few cycles, then overheat the other gun group.  This will allow balanced overheating without putting undue stress on any particular group of guns.

Similarly, if you find yourself primaried in our example Tempest, it is smart to overheat one of your two Invulnerability Fields... preferably the one you placed at the end of the rack, away from everything else.  In this situation, with good skills, that single Invul can be overheated for five minutes or more.  Only if you find yourself under extreme duress would you overheat the other.

In this way, "knowing what is next to what" can be a tremendous boon to your overheating skills.  You did this preparation when you fit out your ship, knowing that two Invuls side by side cannot be overheated for as long as two Invuls separated by another module.  This benefit is only multiplied if you can spare an empty slot.  This most often happens with Interceptors and like ships, who will place an empty slot in one of their central high slots to aid gun overheating in dog-fighting.  The Harbinger and Drake are two other ships that benefit from this sort of strategy.

It is also possible and advantageous to "pre-overheat" modules.  Heat damage only takes place when the module is both overheated and active.  If the module is not active, it will not create heat emissions.  A common tactic before a fight you know is going to happen, for instance, is to pre-overheat one's propulsion jammers for extra range.  The potential heat damage will only take place once you have activated those jammers against a target.  Until then, the module is simply an extra-long range point, web, or scram.  Pre-overheating is also a critical component of successful use of ECM: the first few cycles of your jammers in a fight should nearly always be overheated.  As a result, pre-overheating is a smart move for this, too.

Something that often gets missed is that Tech2 mods are considered more "fragile" when it comes to overheating.  If you intend to overheat often, it can be advantageous to stick to Meta modules that don't have this drawback.  This applies to weapons in particular. However, high meta items such as faction, pirate, and dead-space modules are also sometimes quite resistant to overheating, thanks to lower Heat Damage ratings.  To use one example, the Coreli C-Type 1MN MicroWarpdrive has a Heat Damage rating of 15.9.  The Meta 2 version of the same mod has a Heat Damage rating of 19.

Thanks to a role bonus, Tier 3 Strategic Cruisers are particularly resistant to Heat Damage rates, though not to Heat Emission rates.  Still, this bonus makes them particularly good choices for use of overheating!  In addition, each Tier 3 can fit an Engineering Subsystem -- the Supplemental Coolant Injector -- that increases this bonus even more.  PvP ships fit with this subsystem can overheat guns or defenses for anything from 15 to 60 seconds longer than ships without this subsystem... an amount of time that can be an eternity in PvP combat.

There are a few situations where combining overheating with compatible boosters is advantageous.  For example, overheating the rep modules on a Logistics ship causes those modules to cycle faster, requiring more capacitor.  In this situation, a previously cap-stable ship can become cap-unstable in a hurry.  The Mindflood booster, however, increases the cap skills of the pilot that uses it, and in this way, use of Mindflood can balance the use of overheating.  You Scimi and Oni pilots in particular, take note.

Finally, I would be remiss if I did not mention a complete dick move: if think you're going to be destroyed, overheat everything.  You've got nothing to lose by doing so and might just gift your killers with a big pile of burned out mods.  And who knows, all that overheating across the board might just save your ship.


Sooner or later, the piper will have to be paid.  Overheating nearly always comes at a cost.

First, from time to time, you'll get away with overheating modules without taking any heat damage at all.  If this happens, count yourself lucky!  Pilots that are particularly good at managing tactical overheating, pilots in heat-resistant T3s, and pilots who keep their overheating infrequent and brief will be most likely to fall into this category.  The quickest way to need repairs from overheating is to overheat whole racks at once, but if you only overheat a single module for a cycle or two, and manage your ship's overall heat signature smartly, you may never need repairs at all.

If you burn out a module, then the only repairs that are going to help you are station repairs.  You need to find a station, and that station needs a repair shop.  There, you will have to pay the station mechanics whatever it is they ask to put your burned out module back on-line, and this probably won't be cheap.(4)  ;-)  For this reason, be particularly careful about overheating if you live in wormhole space.  If you burn out a mod in w-space, the only way to repair it is to either replace it at a carrier, Orca, or Ship Maintenance Array, or fly the ship out of w-space to a station.

However, if you've only partially damaged a module, this is where Nanite Repair Paste comes in.  Right-click the affected module, and one of the options will be "Repair".  There are are two Thermodynamics support skills that apply here.  Nanite Operation (rank 2, Mechanics) reduces the amount of paste needed for these repairs by 5% per level trained.  Nanite Interfacing (rank 3, Mechanics) increases the speed of these repairs by 20% per level trained.  PvPers that overheat frequently typically train both skills to Level IV.  Training Nanite Interfacing to Level V is not at all unheard of, because repairing modules with paste is slow.

Often, FCs will not give you all that much repair time, even after a big fight.  This will put you into the position of having to attempt repairs while in warp from system to system.  While a module is being repaired, it cannot be used in active mode.  This again bears repeating: while a module is being repaired, it cannot be actively used.  It will operate in passive mode only, assuming it has a passive mode.  Repairs can be cancelled in progress by right clicking the module a second time and selecting "Cancel Repair".  If the repairs have been going on long enough to repair some damage, that will happen (with the resultant consumption of paste).  Repairs will also happen if you jump into a new system.  This might happen anyway if the fleet is moving: you might start repairs on a set of guns, only to have those repairs aborted when the FC orders the next jump.  Paste will not be consumed until the repairs are complete, which is the good news.  The bad news is that if the damage is extensive, you might go many jumps with badly damaged guns, attempting to repair in each system only to be put off by the next jump.  If this is the case, try canceling the repair just before each jump; perhaps you'll get lucky and some damage will be repaired.

A module currently being repaired will operate in its passive mode, if any.  That means active hardeners will apply any passive bonus, and entirely passive modules (such as Shield Extenders, for instance) will continue to operate normally while under repair.

A few more minor factors to keep in mind about repairing:
  • You cannot overheat one module in a rack while another module in the same rack is being repaired, and vice versa.  You can repair a module in one rack while overheating a module in another rack, and vice versa.
  • If you manage to burn out a group of guns, chances are, you've only burned out one or two of the guns in the group.  However, this will cause the entire group to stop functioning.  You can un-group the guns to isolate the burned out ones, and continue to use those that are not yet burned out. 
  • Large guns have higher heat damage ratings than Medium guns.  Medium guns have higher heat ratings than Small guns.  Therefore, larger guns tend to be more expensive in terms of paste to repair than smaller guns, since they take more damage more quickly and more often.

Once repairs are complete, paste will be consumed at a rate of anywhere from 0.5 to 2 units per hit point of damage, per module, depending on your skills and the base price of the module.  As a result, a 50% damaged group of three guns with 40 HP each can consume anywhere from 30 to 120 units of paste, though usually it will be closer to 45 if your Nanite Operation skill is good.(5)

If you're like me, and you hide passive modules, remember to unhide them and check them for damage!  If you overheat frequently, repair your active modules, but forget your passive ones, you might find your passive ones failing all around you.  ;-)  Remember, it's often cheaper to repair your ship in a station than it is with paste.  If need be, your ship can fly for quite a while with damaged mods until you can get such repairs, perhaps at the fleet's next break.  This is another aspect of overheating you'll have to manage tactically.

As you start to run out of paste (if you didn't bring enough), then you'll have to start making tactical choices: do you overheat any more?  What do you repair once overheating is complete?  Do you repair everything, or just that one critical mod?  It's pretty common by the end of a long roam for someone to plaintively ask "Anyone have some paste I can borrow?"  ;-)


Overheating modules can confer tremendous advantage: guns do more damage, points snare targets at longer ranges, reps cycle faster, ECM jams harder.

But it's not an advantage without disadvantages, and overheating should be used judiciously and when it confers the maximum advantage.  Still, when in doubt, overheat!  Overheating is only an advantage if that advantage is used, and used frequently and well, it can make you quite formidable, particularly in small gang or 1v1 fights where even a 15% advantage here and there can be striking.  It's not at all uncommon for a jam that would have been unsuccessful succeeds because it was overheated... knocking an enemy Logistics out of the fight, and turning an even fight into a one-way bloodbath.

Make sure that bloodbath is inflicted on them, not you.

(1) Utility E-War modules such as Target Painters, Remote Sensor Dampeners, and Tracking Disruptors cannot be overheated.
(2) An important exception is the Damage Control module, which is an active defense module that nevertheless cannot be overheated.

(3) Hull Repair and Transfer mods cannot be overheated.  It is also worth noting that an overheated Shield Booster will receive a 100% more heat damage for each Shield Boost Amplifier in use on that ship.
(4) Alternately, a well-known Gentlemen's Club Interceptor pilot burned out MWDs so frequently that he started carrying a spare MWD module or two in his cargo hold!  If he managed to burn out the first one, he'd find a place to dock up, trade them out, and put the burned-out module in cargo.  GC held sov in a station, so he would rely on free repairs once we were back home to repair his burned out MWDs.

(5) Scary math: the amount of paste needed for a given repair can be calculated using this formula: RoundUp( ( Module Base Price / 13,000 ) * ( Damaged HP / Total HP ) * (1 - 0.05 * Nanite Operation skill level) ).


  1. First, Excellent write up. Very well done and informative.

    I do think you can stop the repair though by right clicking the blinking object. I was repairing yesterday and thought that was an option but maybe not.

  2. There are keybinds for overheating, and people should learn to use them.

  3. Right click the module currently repairing; select 'cancel repair'. This also has the advantage of reducing the heat damage of a module to the point that it had repaired to. So for nano pilots for example, you can half repair your MWD in the middle of a fight to get an extra heat while not having to burn in order to get an extra heated cycle or two before you have chance for a full repair.

    Also worth noting that while repairing a module only prevents use of that particular module it also prevents you heating any other module at all. So if, as in the above example, you are doing a mid fight repair on your MWD you are unable to overheat your point until you either cancel the repair or the module is fully repaired...

  4. You are also missing overheating mid slot ECCMs

  5. Very nice writeup. I feel terrible to admit, but I always forget overheating exists. I will certainly look into it now that I know how it works. Thanks for this!


    But I'll still read it.

    I just had to get it out there :P

  7. The very best comment I ever got on one of my posts, in response to a comment very much like yours:

    "Those squiggly things on your screen are called words. You read them to learn stuff."


  8. Nice Writeup.

    Something i noticed: Not all Guns get a ROF Bonus when overheating, at least Pulse Lasers get a Damage Bonus instead.

    I think close range guns in general get a Damage Bonus, with long range guns getting a ROF Bonus. But didn't check all types.

    I've also read people claiming that putting an Mod at the "Edge" of an Rack results in double the Heat spreading to the Mod next to it. I didn't notice that effect myself but doesn't hurt mentioning it.

  9. Awesome, there were several things I didn't know in here... Thanks!

  10. Damn that Gen-Y and their short attention sp...

    Oh look a shiney!

  11. One of the best i've read so far.
    keep doing what you do.

    I'll try this when I get back to the game.


  12. Good stuff. I think you missed a part, though, wrt overheating guns.

    Long range guns, like railguns, get a rate-of-fire bonus as you described. Their short range counterpart, however, get a damage bonus.

    Missile launchers are exempt from this, they all get a RoF bonus.

  13. And be particularly careful when overheating in a wormhole, as you can't repair burned out modules without finding an exit then finding a nearby station that you can dock at.

    Also, I think red supergiant anomalies increase heat damage.

  14. Another thing to bear in mind is that overheating ECM modules (to increase their strength) is subject to the stacking penalty (and therefore has much less effect on ships which are loaded down with SDAs and ECM strength rigs). I don't believe this is the case with overheating any other modules though - anyone care to correct me?

  15. This is awesome, thanks! Training thermodynamics IV now...

  16. This guide (and all your guides for that matter) are very much appreciated, Jester.
    Many thanks!

  17. I really appreciate you awesome blogging!

  18. As the Anon that suggested this guide all those many monhs ago, thank you! Very informative.

    I do have a question tho:
    If you burn out a passive fitting module(co-pro, aux power core etc.) that was allowing you to fit other modules you otherwise wouldn't be able to fit, what happens?

  19. I'm fairly sure it's the same thing that happens when you fit a rig which increases fitting requirements beyond what your ship can support - EVE picks a module and puts it offline. I haven't done a lot of testing as to which module you lose (though I've a feeling it tends to be your lowest mid slot), or what happens if offlining one mod isn't enough, however.

  20. One lesson I learned recently:

    Beware of ultility high slot modules which have low overheating tolerance (for example covops cloaks). With a standard layout (i.e. separating the guns with your utility highs), you can potentially burn out those modules before you burn out your guns.

    If you're using a ultility high slot module that you rely on to survive or to perform your role in the fleet (e.g. cloaks, probe launchers, gank links, etc) you may want to put this at the end of the rack to ensure your guns can't burn it out.

  21. From the initial Tempest example: "This particular ship has no active modules in the low slots..."; But your image shows a DCII in the lows which, IIRC, can be overheated.

  22. Thanks for all the comments, everyone! I'll be publishing an errata for this guide today, then adjusting this guide to compensate.

    Some quickie obvious ones:

    Lots of people point out that different weapons get different overheating bonuses. I'm embarrassed to say that I've never noticed this! I'll research this and include the differences.

    two step points out that you can overheat ECCM mods. I knew this (hell, I talked about it not two weeks ago when I talked about the gas-mining Moa), but forgot to mention it. It will be mentioned. ;-)

    @Anon0842: that's a good point. I'll emphasize that.

    @Anon0305: that's an interesting question! I'll research it, but I suspect that a random mod will go off-line and you won't be able to on-line it, same as what happens if you jump into a ship in station that you don't have the skills to fit.

    Lots of people said I didn't emphasize T3 bonuses enough. That will be corrected.

    @Azual: good point. I'll point that out.

    @Thansoli: nope, DCUs can't be overheated. I mention that in a footnote.

    Overall, the comments on this guide have been very positive! Thanks for all of them and I'm glad you've enjoyed it!

  23. This was a great guide, I've read through it twice now and I learned quite a bit about a subject that doesn't usually get delved into this deeply.

    "Finally, I would be remiss if I did not mention a complete dick move: if think you're going to be destroyed, overheat everything. You've got nothing to lose by doing so and might just gift your killers with a big pile of burned out mods. And who knows, all that overheating across the board might just save your ship."

    Yep, that's exactly what I did a few nights ago when I was being ganked in my mission Myrm in lolsec...I hope I burned out at least one dropped module...lol.

  24. Very nice guide...

  25. Exelent reading. I was always wondering how is posible to damage modules that i dont OH or even worse, how can i damage armor plate. Now i know, and best part is fitting management, how to fit to OH longer. Great, we need years that somebody write something like this, all CCP did is give you module and look at him like idiot why is it burning so fast.

    EVERY skillbook shuld have description like this one, so when i actualy skill my toon, i skill myself too.

  26. thanks for the trouble mate, love the details

  27. As a recent returning player to Eve, I've been concerned about pushing the "Overload" button thinking I'd break everything. After reading your article I can safely say I'm now fully clued up.

    Thank you for writing up in detail what would have otherwise taken me a lot of isk and burnt out modules to find out!

  28. Making your own paste though planetary interaction is a good way to make/save isk. Make good reserve for you're self then sell what you make until you need more.

  29. Amazing guide, thanks.


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