This guide provides specific advice on fleet formation based on the Small Fleet Doctrine. The assumption is you want a solid core fleet, the ability to add specialty fleet, and the Recyclers necessary to harvest the derbs quickly. Practically, a speciality fleet is hunting Capitals.
The Core Fleet comprises the bulk of one’s fleet. Fighters and Cruisers are kept to the same ratio. That is, you’ll need forty Fighters per Cruiser. To carry all the Fighters you’ll need Carriers or Frigates.
- 400 FTs with 10 Cruisers require 12 Carriers (4,000 combat, 4,800 in Carriers) or
- 400 FTs with 10 Cruisers require 90 Frigates (11,200 combat, 7,200 in Frigates)
The disadvantage of Cruisers is their modest vulnerability to Fighters. As this is due to their low shields, your goal to combat this is to push your shield research when possible. For example, if your opponent’s Laser is at 25 and your Shield is at 18 and your Armour is at 22, your opponent needs 56 FTs to kill your Cruiser.
Capital Hunting Fleet
What are you hunting? Cruisers are efficient against Heavy Cruisers and Battleships; and are efficient in cracking all Base Defenses. So, we are really discussing attacks on Capital units (Dreads, Titans and Levis). If you’re going after the most efficient, you want Ion Frigates. If you’re looking for the most general (but still efficient), you want Battleships. While Ion Frigates cost slightly more, they encounter fewer losses. Both Battleships and Ion Frigates become more lethal with higher research in Ion.
- Ion Frigates ** Dreads: ~100 to 120 Ion Frigates to the Dread (13Kcr) ** Titans: ~400 to 480 Ion Frigates to the Titan (53Kcr) ** Levis: ~1300 to 1350 Ion Frigates to the Levi (160Kcr)
- Battleships ** Dreads: ~5 Battleships to the Dread (10Kcr) ** Titans: ~20 Battleships to the Titan (40Kcr) ** Levis: ~70 Battleships to the Dread (140Kcr)
I still recommend avoiding Ion Bombers, but they are more efficient than Battleships against Capitals. Your choice.
The easiest rule of thumb is to carry 1 Recycler for every 10 credits of combat fleet. That can be a huge number of Recyclers. However, this lets you harvest all fleet derbs (yours and your victim’s) in one tick.