Sunday, 7 October 2012

The Bomber Fallacy

When an FC asks for a DPS ship, what do you bring?

A: 1300 DPS blaster Talos?
B: 850 DPS Vigilant?
C: 750 DPS Deimos?
D: 500 DPS HAM Drake?
E: 550 DPS stealth bomber?

It seems E is a very common answer, and it puzzles me to this day. When I took over my toon from my bro, 4 years ago, TF was based in KP-FQ1 in Stain. The toon could fly Caldari BS, BC, SB's and Minmatar SB's. The CEO of the corp, who taught me precisely nothing about anything, said "The Hound is a good DPS ship?"and I was so noob I said "What is DPS?".

Note, this was when you could fit cruise missiles to bombers, and I'd rate Sanshas from 130km in my hound. Good times. 

The opinion of the metagame hasn't changed much over the years. Bombers are "good DPS ships". So you bring them to knife fights.

The problem with bombers is they have no tank. Yeah, I'm really breaking the news here, but bear with. The thing is, you need some form of tank in order to gank, unless you fly an alpha fleet or can successfully kite, or have overwhelming ECM. Brawling in gangs requires not only pushing out DPS, but tanking it long enough to actually land it. Bombers cannot do this.

My current alliance runs SB/EWAR frig roams. They are fun, but ultimately until our EWAR pilots get better at their job (like, not having a BB on gate at zero so it gets instapopped) we will continue to get cleaned up and lose shitloads of ships. Not that it isn't fun, but its not very effective.

For example, we fought R.E.V.O.L.U.T.I.O.N. in Nagamanen (eg; link). We did OK versus two BC's, only because of the Celestis (having lost the BB within 10s). But soon enough, the bombers started dropping like flies, usually to drones (as staying at 30-50km and aligned is a foreign concept), and we got hung up on a Claymore's tank. How we lost the Rapier and other shit, not entirely sure.

To my mind, a bomber does well for its intended purpose: ambush. Get in, gank shit, and get out. Roaming lowsec with bombers, even with EWAR support, is a mug's game. Yes, it's cheap, yes you bring paper DPS but you bring paper tanks. The way the ASB's are these days, they have it entirely the other way around: you have a ridiculous tank and don't need gank, as by the time the enemy busts your tank, your have whittled him down.

So it is interesting, yet frustrating, when people turn up to the wrong situation with a bomber. Its not a DPS ship, it's an ambush ship. If you aren't ambuhing someone, leave it at home and bring a gank cruiser.

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