Fleet Commanding For Newbies

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Over the last few weeks, I've led a good few ops during both Euro times and late at night with you US monkeys. I've acquired a taste for it, despite not being in GoonFleet for very long. As I've been doing, I'm encouraging more new players to take on the role of FC in gangs of every size and just keep trying, failing and learning!

Also, remember:

IF YOU GET GOONS KILLED EN MASSE, YOU WILL BE A HERO OF GOONFLEET.

To make the process easier, I thought I'd post a thread detailing my collected (if limited) experiences from FCing goon gangs. This is by no means the be-all-or-end-all guide to FCing (read the proper one for that) but I hope it gives a more newbie's eye view of the whole thing.

Without further ado:


Contents

Formup

  • First and foremost, don't be afraid to start ops. Most goons are bored out of their skulls sitting and playing station simulator. They'd rather be out there killing shit. With that knowledge in mind, you can safely assume that at least 5 goons will sign up for whatever shenanigans you have planned.
    • Make it clear what your objective is. For example:
   "Suicide gang to piss off LV carebears"

or

   "Cockfagging gang to DG-"
  • This ensures people bring appropriate hardware to the op. The last thing you want is to set up an op and mention it's a suicide op the minute you engage. People in your gang might have expensive-ass battleships which they'll not want to lose.
  • Keep spamming your invite. If you say "X up for the rapetrain to LV space" once, repeat it every few minutes. Goons have an attention sp.....what.....of about 3 seconds. Remind them you're getting ready to go.
  • Keep up with your invites. If you broadcast in GS&Red, keep it open.
  • To do with point 2: broadcast your broad intentions. Tell goons you're gonna go to somewhere near DG- and kill off carebears. Make it sound appealing. Even if it is a lie. You can always change the objectives halfway through!
  • Tell us where you're forming the op
  • Make a TS channel and announce it. Or use one of the existing channels. I have Channel Commander in a few so I prefer to use them so I can edit the name and also chat to the FCs if there's some critical intel they need to know or if they're needing reinforcements.
  • Don't wait forever to leave.
    • Once you have 5-10 members, get moving. If other people want to join tell them to hurry the fuck up & catch up.

Departure

  • Give us an ETD - like "Op leaves at 22:30". I work in EVE time. It's less hassle converting timezones and everyone knows what EVE time is since it's at the bottom of their screens
  • Yell out on TS that you're leaving. Announce it in GS&Red so you aren't left picking up join requests from people 8 jumps away. Tell them that if they want to come, form their own op and catch up.
  • Form people up on a gate.
  • Broadcast a destination (map, right click on target system, broadcast destination)
  • Ask for a scout to X up. Please don't just say "Someone in a fast frigate go and scout for me" because if there are 12 tacklers, you can bet at least 8 of them will jump through that gate. Scouts typically need a mic to be effective
  • Ask someone to relay orders from TS in gang chat.

En route

  • Yell out "align on xxxx-x" in every system. While this is not necessary, it helps those that can't work out for love nor money where they should be pointing their space e-peen.
  • Gangwarp the gang. Newbies may not know how. Right click your destination (gate), click warp gang not warp. This will make sure that the gang goes with you instead of having to follow you in tatters.
  • Feel free to yell at muppets that warp ahead unless they're scouts. Warping ahead is BAD BAD BAD. See the following:
  • Yell out gate statuses. Unless you KNOW all gates and systems are clear - this is where scouts should be reporting statuses of each system they come through. Goons are generally fairly intelligent and will wait for the "Gate is GREEN, jump" command to get their asses into the next system but there are always a few.
  • If you're one of those few, you're a giant faggot.
  • Typically it's safe to say "All gates are GREEN unless told otherwise" when flying through friendly space unless there is intel of hostile gangs around.
    • Speaking of which, your two best friends are Red Arrow and Local when FCing. Other members of the gang can keep an eye on GS&Red and pick up dropped members & stuff - you're interested in the intel. If you know about a hostile gang and rough compositions, then redirect your gang to deal with them.
  • LV often provide us with target practice in our home systems so we should take every advantage to rape them some. You don't even have to leave your own system! How thoughtful of them! They just come and get raped!
  • Like I said earlier, don't be afraid to redirect your fleet if you receive intel on hostile movements or backup requests from the senior FCs. Obviously for the first instance, if said hostiles are 12 jumps out then wait for any further reports on heading before committing your gang to chasing them.

The pew-pew

  • The most critical thing that I've learned over my time is this:
   "A shit decision is better than none at all"
  • Adopt this as your mantra:
   "A goon with no target is a sad goon"
  • Seriously. If you're clueless about calling primaries, set your overview to BSs/HACs and above and just yell out the first name with a big square next to it. You can change your mind later.
    • Repeat yourself. Some FCs shout primaries over and over and over and over and over and... you get the idea. My head goes numb with hearing "Digital Communist is Primary" over & over again, but it gets the point across. Guess who's primary, faggots?
  • Most important thing is to open fire & do damage. If you're flying a gang made of cruisers/frigates then that BS you take down will STILL be worth more than your whole gang so you win.
  • If you have EWar ships with you, tell them to fuck jamming the primary and focus on the other ships. Usual procedure is "Jam the ship with the name closest alphabetically to yours". This spreads the EWar out for max effect.
    • You don't jam the primary often because by their nature, primaries die FAST.
  • Once you get the primary set up, run over the ship list and pick a secondary. Again, if unsure, anyone will do potentially. You're out to cause havoc not to do precision strikes. Secondaries you can take time over.
  • Know when to run. Unless it's a suicide op, running is sometimes advisable. Instances include when your scout on the other side of the gate reports a sudden spike in local followed by a hostile gang warping in on your gate and beginning to jump. If you think you can take them (which should be almost always. You're goons, after all) then stay and fight. If you have a dictor, tell him to pop a bubble and start yelling primaries.
  • If the hostile force is many times larger than yours and it's not a suicide op (reinforcement convoy/tactical strike op) then tell your people to scatter ASAP. Just say something like "GET THE FUCK OUT, WARP TO SAFESPOTS, WARP TO PLANETS etc"
  • Trac3rt's tip:

Change your overview settings to show the ship type in space next to the pilot name. When you mouse-over them on the overview the ship type will popup on the screen next to their ship in space. If you have the map fully zoomed out (which as the FC you bloody well should) all your targets will be in roughly the same position on the screen making it really simple to find your target.

This method is twice as fast as any other since only mouse-over on the overview is required with no clicking and waiting for images to load, I can easily skim over 4-5 BS a second to find the targets I want quickly and effortlessly. It is also 100% less against the EULA and prevents you from being a shitty pilot who requires a crutch to play the game.

Miscellaneous

  • TS Discipline. I tend to relax rules on TS chatter on my ops. People can chat shit on there as much as they want as long as they remember we're on ops.
  • Vary this depending your power trip.
  • TS is a great way to save your fat biscuit fingers from typing in gang chat. However as soon as you get reports of a hostile gang whether from Red Arrow or a scout, tell your guys to clear TS and gang chat. Yell at them if you need to. Make it clear that we're now in combat readiness and as such, you need TS clear. Something like "CHECK, CHECK SHUT THE FUCK UP. CLEAR TS, CLEAR GANG. NOW!" usually works.
  • Don't be afraid to dish out a little abuse to your gang. It's what goons do.
  • If people want to join your gang and post stupid things like "x for op" in GS&Red, laugh at them and then explain that you have no fucking clue what they're Xing for. Explain to them where the gang is
  • If you are returning to base for reinforcements, make it clear to the gang and then post an ad in GS&Red. This saves you sitting on your asses with your guns getting cold while waiting for people to X. This will ensure that they're all ready to get out to space and kill shit when you arrive.
  • Don't let the presence of far senior FCs in your gang daunt you. I did this for a while... Realize that YOU formed the gang and as such, they signed up to fly with YOU, not vice versa. They effectively signed a waiver of sorts that they are flying with you and will for the most part listen to whatever you say. Experienced FCs will often give advice and take over for a few seconds to get the gang out of hairy situations, but on the main they'll let you run it.
  • By all means, ask them for advice. This won't make you look bad in front of you gang. It's better to learn in the field than sitting in a station. If you wanna know how to call primaries, ask.