Support Skills

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Skills and Fitting

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Skills

What should I train?
Fitting Skills · Support Skills
Gunnery Skills · Missile Skills
Shield Skills
What shouldn't I train?

Advanced Fitting Info

Passive Tanking
Stacking Penalty

View Full Guides Index

Support skills are skills which (generally) aren't required for specific modules. Instead, they give blanket increases to all of a certain type of module - for instance, Surgical Strike increases all turret damage by 3%, from a Civilian Gatling Cannon to a 1400mm Howitzer Artillery Cannon. Training these skills will make you more lethal, independent of what you decide to fly or fit.

These skills are vital for all pilots because their effects are multiplied instead of added, and skills have no stacking penalty for bonuses like modules.

Be sure to balance your training between main and support skills. Training all support skills immediately to IV will mean you can fly a very nasty frigate. Train them to III and you could be competent in a battleship in the same amount of time. As with all skills, diminishing returns become somewhat apparent after level II and very apparent after level IV.

Skills are sorted by what they improve, then by priority. The rank numbers are just suggestions.

Contents

Navigation Skills

Basic navigation support skills allow you move and align faster. This improves your chances of catching and tackling a ship. High priority.

Warp Drive Operation IV - warp farther and prevent double jumping, make this a priority so you're not left behind on fleet ops
Navigation IV - fly faster
Evasive Maneuvering III - align faster
Spaceship Command III - align faster
Acceleration Control IV - fly faster with afterburners or microwarp drives

Targeting Skills

Targeting skills are less important when you're still in a cruiser, but become vital with larger, longer-range guns and Electronic Warfare.

Long Range Targeting III - target farther
Signature Analysis III - target faster
Targeting II - target more ships

Electronic Warfare Skills

These two skills apply to all four Electronic Warfare skills and are highly recommended, especially for Blackbird pilots.

Long Distance Jamming III - longer EW optimal range
Frequency Modulation III - longer EW falloff range

These four skills require level IV in their respective EW skills, as well as Electronics V. Recommended after advanced learning.

Signal Dispersion III - increased ECM effects
Signal Suppression III - increased sensor dampening effects
Turret Destabilization III - increased tracking disruptor effects
Signature Focusing III - increased target painting signature radius

Fitting Skills

These skills will let you fit more stuff. High priority.

Electronics IV - more base CPU
Engineering IV - more base powergrid
Weapon Upgrades IV - weapons use less CPU

Minor Fitting Skills

These skills improve fitting for specific items. Priority depends on how heavily you use each one.

Shield Upgrades III - shield upgrades use less powergrid
Energy Grid Upgrades III - reactor control units, diagnostic systems and all capacitor upgrades use less CPU
Advanced Weapon Upgrades III - weapons use less powergrid, requires Weapon Upgrades V and should not be trained before completing advanced learning. Many advanced or especially "tight" fittings require Advanced Weapon Upgrades. If you're fitting T2 Large Guns this is a must.

Capacitor Skills

These skills increase capacitor capacity and recharge, and improves some cap use for universal modules. High priority.

Energy Management IV - higher cap capactity, and cap recharge time remains the same, so better effective cap regen/sec
Energy Systems Operation IV - faster cap regen
Fuel Conservation III - reduces cap used by afterburners, but not microwarpdrives
Propulsion Jamming III - lower cap for warp scramblers and disruptors (disruptors especially eat a lot of capacitor)
High Speed Maneuvering III - lower capacitor consumption for microwarp drives (this does not affect the -25% penalty to total capacitor size)

Minor Capacitor Skills

These skills decrease capacitor requirements for specific items. Priority depends on how heavily you use each one.

Electronic Warfare III - ECM jammers
Sensor Linking III - sensor dampeners
Weapon Disruption III - tracking disruptors
Target Painting II - target painters
Energy Emission Systems III - Energy Neutralizers and Nosferatu
Shield Emission Systems III - shield transporters.
Remote Armor Repair Systems III - remote armor repair
Controlled Bursts IV - lower capacitor use for energy and hybrid turrets. Vital for Amarr, useless for Minmatar.
Shield Compensation III - lower capacitor use for shield boosters

Tanking Skills

These are passive skills which should be trained by everyone. Train shield skills first if you fly Caldari, and armor skills first otherwise. High priority.

Shield Management IV - more shields, also your regeneration time remains the same as shield amount increases so it improves passive shield regen/sec
Shield Operation III - faster passive shield regeneration
Shield Compensation II - Reduces the capacitor need of active shield boosters. I don't know how essential this is because it only gives 2% reduced cap need per level.
Tactical Shield Manipulation I/IV - allows use of active shield hardeners
Hull Upgrades IV - more armor, allows for armor hardeners
Repair Systems III - required for armor and structure repairers, higher levels get you faster armor repairing = more armor repaired per second
Mechanic III - 5% increased structure per level, required for armor repairers

Minor Tanking Skills

These are skills mainly used for passive tanking, or to provide some survivability if a tanker's cap is drained. Low priority until after advanced learning.

Passive shield hardeners are rarely used outside of occasional EM hardening.

Armor Compensation Skills

These skills improve the resists on Energized Adaptive Nano Membranes and are generally very useful.

EM Armor Compensation IV - improves armor hardeners
Explosive Armor Compensation IV - improves armor hardeners
Kinetic Armor Compensation IV - improves armor hardeners
Thermic Armor Compensation IV - improves armor hardeners

Shield Compensation Skills

These really only apply to passive shield hardeners, which are rarely used due to the various active hardeners, and namely the Invulnerability Field, being so much better in comparison. Since there's no shield equivalent of the Energized Adaptive Nano Membrane (i.e. something that passively increases all shield resists), these are of limited use, mostly on ships that shield-tank but have very limited capacitor-- Caldari and some Minmatar frigates and destroyers.

EM Shield Compensation IV - improves shield hardeners (rarely used)
Explosive Shield Compensation IV - improves shield hardeners (almost never used)
Kinetic Shield Compensation IV - improves shield hardeners (almost never used)
Thermic Shield Compensation IV - improves shield hardeners (almost never used)

Drone Skills

Basic Drone Support Skills

Improves all aspects of drones. High priority for Gallente and any higher-skilled pilots. Unlike other weapon skills, training Drones V is a huge improvement. The extra drone, plus Drone Interfacing III, will double your drone DPS. More info is at Drones, BEES.

Drones IV - control 1 more drone per rank
Scout Drone Operation IV - drones are controlled at longer range
Drone Durability III - drones have more shield and armor
Combat Drone Operation III - drones do more damage
Drone Navigation IV - drones move faster, are harder to track

Advanced Drone Support Skills

The following require Drones V, and should probably be trained after advanced learning unless you started with Drones V due to the gallente "Special Forces" build.

Drone Sharpshooting IV - drones have better optimal range
Drone Interfacing IV - drones do lots more damage
Electronic Warfare Drone Interfacing III - drones are controlled at longer range (also requires Electronic Warfare IV)

Gunnery Skills

Improves all aspects of turrets. High priority for all but Caldari, unless you plan on using Caldari railboats like the Rokh. More details on individual skills: Gunnery Support Skills

Controlled Bursts IV - lower capacitor use for energy and hybrid turrets. Vital for Amarr, useless for Minmatar.
Motion Prediction IV - better turret tracking, especially important for medium artillery and larger
Rapid Firing IV - faster turret firing
Sharpshooter IV- longer optimal range
Surgical Strike IV - improved damage
Trajectory Analysis IV - longer falloff range, requires Gunnery V, wait until after advanced learning.

Missile Skills

Improves all aspects of missile launchers. High priority for Caldari, medium priority for Minmatar. More details on individual skills: Missile Support Skills

Missile Bombardment III - longer missile flight time and therefore range
Missile Projection III - better missile speed and therefore range
Rapid Launch III - faster missile launching
Warhead Upgrades III - increased missile damage by 2% per level, train the actual missile skills before you do this (ex: Standard Missiles gives a 5% bonus to damage per level and is only rank 2 compared to Warhead Upgrades' rank 5)
Target Navigation Prediction III - easier to hit fast targets
Guided Missile Precision III - makes your light, heavy (not HAM) and cruise missiles better at hitting small targets. Requires Missile Launcher Operation V, wait until after advanced learning.

Importance of Support Skills

Take the following example for gunnery support (WARNING: MATH).

A relatively new pilot, piloting a Rifter, using three 200mm Autocannons, EMP ammo, with the following skills:

Gunnery IV
Minmatar Frigate IV
Small Projectile Turret III
33 damage x 1.925 x 1.20 x 1.15 = 87.664 damage per salvo
2.5s x 0.925 = 2.31s rate of fire
1,000m optimal range
4,000m falloff range
.315rad/sec x 1.3 = .4095 rad/sec tracking
= 37.95 damage per second.

Add the following support skills:

Rapid Firing III
Motion Prediction III
Sharpshooter III
Surgical Strike III
33 damage x 1.925 x 1.20 x 1.15 x 1.09 = 95.554 damage per salvo
2.5s x 0.89 x 0.925 = 2.06s rate of fire
1,000m x 1.15 = 1,150 optimal range
4,000m falloff range
.315rad/sec x 1.3 x 1.15 = .47 rad/sec tracking
= 46.39 damage per second with better tracking and optimal range. That's a 20% increase in damage for about half the time it would take to train Gunnery V.

In other words, if you can afford a skillbook and it gives any useful bonus, train it immediately to at least level II, preferably III. Main skills should generally be trained when they're necessary for a module or support skill - for instance, Gunnery IV for Surgical Strike or Missile Launcher Operation IV for torpedoes.

Other Examples

A pilot with no skill in Gallente ships can get into a Dominix in about two weeks with the following skills:

Skill Requirements

However, if that pilot wants to actually be able to use his Dominix effectively, it is recommended that he gets these skills as well:

Recommended Skills

Drone Specialization Skills