HICS need redesigning
As I collect all my stuff, preparing to move back out into nullsec, I look at Gothic Robo-chicken, my trusty Onyx-class heavy interdictor. Sitting there, collecting dust ever since I could fit a t2 galente battleship and started flying them instead.
It occurs to me, that the Heavy interdictor is no longer fulfilling the role it is designed for. This, quite frankly, sucks.
TL;DNR: Because of Titan
The long story: Cast your mind back to pre-dominion times
Titans had an area of effect weapon, that pretty much blasted any sub-capital that wasn’t a heavily tanked battleship. Your battleship fleet set up for gank and not tank? Boom, one doomsday and you’re sitting in a pod, Dual doomsdays and local drops by the exact amount of pilots that were in your fleet. Most alliances in the Northern Coalition therefore mandated that their battleship fleets should be able to survive at least one doomsday device.
a poor defenceless support fleet gets blasted into space dust, their battleship fleet barely hanging onto their ships by the skin of their structure while a Malicious titan laughs at the effects of his Doomsday Device
Both Titans and Motherships are immune to electronic warfare. This includes warp scramblers and so interceptors are useless against them. The potential for area of effect doomsdaying renders standard interdictors, destroyable, err, destroyer-class vessels less than survivable should a second titan come to assist the first supercapital.
Enter the Heavy Interdictor: A cruiser class vessel with the Effective Hit points of a heavily tanked battleship, able to project Warp bubbles if need, sacrificing manoeuvrability and speed, but also able to pin supercapitals with a focused warp disruption script, maintaining manoeuvrability and speed, making it hard to hit. Double doomsdays from titans of different races? Pah! A mere inconvenience. Doomsday destroy your fleet? Hold the supercapital in place, light a cyno when you’re fleet is ready to jump back in. Supercapital ships lived in fear of the cyno-HIC.
Small gang cruiser warfare? Oh, I’ll just take my cruiser class vessel with the hit points of a battleship and a bubble generator and infinite warp scrambling power along and see if we can’t trap a HAC or three at a gate.
They were Gods in nullsec.
Now: Post dominion:
So, what are Heavy interdictors good for now?
Titans now only hit one target at a time. Battleships no longer need to be tanked against Doomsday devices. You can tackle a titan and it can have ten doomsdays go off without reducing the effectiveness of your 100 man battleship fleet, despite the fact they are all glass cannons.
Sure, the supercapitals are still immune to ewarfare but I can buy and equip five standard interdictors for the price of one Heavy interdictor. And if a titan doomsdays, none of the interdictors die. And they have the manoeuvrability and speed almost equalling frigates.
Small gang warfare? Ok, they may be still good for gate camps, but if given a choice between a 30 million ship and a 160 million ship just to have a bubble up on a gate, heck – if you’re camping a gate why not deploy a large static bubble? That’s only 5-10 million.
Tackling tech III ships: ok – I admit, this is the one specialist role remaining. Only a focused warp disruption script can tackle a interdiction nullifier equipped strategic crulser. How the hell am I supposed to catch one though.
Tackling supercapitals in lowsec: ok, the HIC remains the only thing that can tackle super capitals in lowsec. I know I don’t fly in lowsec very much, but I’ve only had that happen once, and it was a fluke.
Wormholes? Please… you can’t fit a supercapital in a wormhole. Use an interdictor, although perhaps it would be nice to pin down a carrier… hmmm.
Gate camping in empire: Ok, a remote sensor boosted Onyx or Broadsword is still king of gate camps in lowsec, but why not have I don’t know… five interceptors for the same price.
My point remains: The Heavy Interdictor’s unique ability to pin down supercapitals while surviving multiple doomsday devices, is obsolete. And sitting on gates in lowsec is not what the ship was designed for.
What should happen:
In My Humble Opinion, the following changes should happen to HIC’s:
1) Hit points reduced
2) Warp disruption field generator range extended to at least give it a bit of advantage over a standard interdictor
3) The addition of scripts to change the properties of the bubble for example (and these are just ideas, some perhaps overpowered):
a) Make the bubble area of effect tracking disruption.
b) make the bubble area of effect webbing.
c) make the bubble area of effect sensor boosting (for friendly fleets)
d) make the bubble area of effect hit point boosting (portable shield for fleets)
) My personal favourite: Make the bubble Area of effect cloaking. Remember that protoss ship in starcraft that could conceal troops, revealing only itself..
Warp cloaked? Able to use black ops bridges? Perhaps too overpowered…
I’m not asking for a buff, I am just asking that it be looked at again in the light of the dominion changes.