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Capital Fleet Ships
Dreadnoughts are capital ships dedicated to dealing out and surviving large amounts of damage. Their primary purpose is to lay siege to a Player owned station; while large enough fleets of sub-capital ships can destroy POSes, Dreadnoughts do it much faster and with lower numbers and lower risk to the attackers. They are also very well suited to engaging and destroying hostile Capital Ships and Supercapital ships. These two abilities combine to make a fleet of Dreadnoughts the primary means of strategic power projection for any 0.0 alliance. The ability to field large amounts of Dreadnoughts - and, if necessary, replace losses - is critical for anyone who wants to take or hold 0.0 space. Beyond alliance warfare, Dreadnoughts have little personal use for their pilots compared to Carriers; they are also expensive (~1.5 billion for the hull) and have high skill requirements, and so many alliances either subsidize them, or even provide free Dreadnoughts to their pilots.
Like most other capital ships, Dreadnoughts are able to jump using Cynosural Field, although with a far more limited range than that of a carrier (5.0 light years base vs. 6.5 LY base for a carrier). Dreadnoughts are also the only ship able to fit a Siege Module, which although immobilizing the ship and turning already terrible tracking to horrific, drastically improves their damage and tanking capabilities. A Dreadnought in Siege Mode is also immune to any kind of Electronic Warfare. However, while in siege, the Dreadnought can not be remotely repaired or boosted in any other way, so it has to rely on its own tanking ability and capacitor power. One Siege cycle lasts 10 minutes, and uses up a certain amount of Strontium Clathrates ("stront"). Typically, a Dreadnought with an adequately skilled pilot will carry enough stront for 5-8 siege cycles (depending on how much cargo space has to be devoted to fuel).
Dreadnoughts use the XL class of weaponry, which does large amounts of damage at long range but has very poor tracking. As mentioned above, Siege Mode increases damage and tank while decreasing tracking and sensor capabilities - a Dreadnought in siege takes much longer to lock targets, and is limited to two targets at once. A Dreadnought in Siege Mode inflicts the same amount of damage as about a dozen standard fleet sniping battleships; out of siege, its damage output is roughly the same as a single battleship - it does significantly higher volley damage, but has a lower rate of fire. Non-sieged Dreadnoughts also retain enough tracking and sensor speed that they can be used against battleship fleets with reasonable effectiveness, which Goonswarm has done occasionally. In Siege Mode, however, a Dreadnought will have a hard time hitting anything that is not either a Capital ship or completely stationary. Sometimes, lucky hits on moving subcapital ships will occur, especially when the target has a very low transversal velocity.
The counter to Dreadnoughts is either a large enough subcapital fleet, or another (larger) Dreadnought fleet. Historically, Carrier fleets have also been used to defeat Dreadnoughts, but since the offensive power of their Fighter drones is easily countered by relatively few escorting Carriers using Smartbombs, and since Dreadnoughts have become so commonplace, this tactic has fallen out of use. Player Owned Stations can also pose a significant threat to sieging Dreadnoughts, especially if they have been set up specifically to counter them. A typical anti-dread POS has several Energy Neutralizing batteries, combined with Large Pulse Laser or Autocannon sentries; when the Dreadnoughts enter siege, the energy neuting batteries and guns are focused on a single Dreadnought, with the hope of draining all capacitor power from it (thus preventing it from repairing itself or even keeping its hardeners activated) and subsequently destroying it before it can exit its siege cycle.
A single Dreadnought is generally not a threat to anything smaller than another Capital ship - they are so slow and unwieldy that smaller ships can almost always escape or evade its fire, as long as they are not stationary. The Moros, however, is somewhat of an exception due to its large dronebay and bonuses to drone damage - when engaging a hostile Moros, always watch out for its drones. A well skilled Moros pilot using T2 heavy drones can do 900 dps with them.
See Dread Program for our policy on reimbursements.
Before a recent (as of July 2009) buff, the Naglfar used to be markedly inferior to the other three Dreadnoughts. It is now up to par with the other dreads.
Generally speaking, any Dreadnought is useful - it is always better to have more dreads. That said, they all have certain advantages and disadvantages.
The Revelation is often regarded as the overall "best" dread because of its good damage, tank and, importantly, the fact that it doesn't need to reload. However, because its weapons consume a large amount of capacitor power, it is vulnerable to Energy Neutralizers, and it also has a smaller cargo bay than the other Dreadnoughts.
The Moros is the most versatile of the Dreadnoughts, thanks to its drone bay; it poses a larger threat to subcapital ships than any of the other dreads, and can even be used to rat with (although only an idiot would actually do it). Its main disadvantage lies in its partial reliance on drones - if it is deprived of their use, it does less damage than the other dreads.
The Phoenix has a stiff tank (the best burst tank) and does good damage with its Citadel Torpedoes; it can also choose damage types, and it does the same damage whether it sieges from 5km or 200km. The problem is that unlike the turret dreads, its damage does not arrive instantly. Several volleys of Citadel torps may well be on their way to the target when it blows up or warps out, and thus potential damage is wasted. This has been somewhat mitigated by a recent buff of the flight speed of Citadel torpedos, but the fundamental problem still remains.
The Naglfar does potentially the highest damage of any Dreadnought. It is also vertical. Its main disadvantage is that it is more skill-intensive than the other Dreadnoughts, and it needs the Minmatar Dreadnought skill trained to V to really shine. Like the Phoenix, it also uses Citadel torpedos, but after the recent changes these are a relatively unimportant part of its damage output.
These are the minimum recommended skills for capital combat participation. If you are missing any of these skills train them up ASAP.
Note: Energy Management V, Thermodynamics IV and Nanite Operation/Interfacing are strongly recommended, especially for caps that use active hardeners. You can overheat hardeners when primaried and keep them overheated for a good 2-3 minutes, which is about how long you'll live anyway if you're facing a capital gang -- and can even save you if you're just being shot by subcaps.
- Jump Drive Calibration 4
- Jump Fuel Conservation 4
- Energy Management 4
- Energy Systems Operation 5
- Signature Analysis 4
- Long Range Targeting 4
- Drones 5
- Scout Drone Operation 3
- Sentry Drone Interfacing 1
- Drone Durability 3
- Drone Interfacing 3
- Drone Navigation 3
- Evasive Maneuvering 3
- Racial Carrier 4
- Fighters 4
- Sentry Drone Operation 3
- Energy Pulse Weapons 3
- Combat Drone Operation 4
- Capital Shield Emission Systems 3
- Capital Remote Armor Repair Systems 3
Capital Shield Emission Systems 3
Capital Remote Armor Repair Systems 3
- Racial Dread 4
- Tactical Weapon Reconfiguration 4
- Capital <weapon system> 4
Missiles (Phoenix, Naglfar)
- Rapid Launch 4
- Warhead Upgrades 4
- Missile Projection 3
- Missile Bombardment 4
- Target Navigation Prediction 3
Guns (Naglfar, Moros, Revelation):
- Surgical Strike 4
- Rapid Firing 4
- Sharpshooter 4
- Motion Prediction 3
- Trajectory Analysis 3
- Drone Interfacing 4
- Sentry Drone Interfacing 4
- Heavy Drone Operation 4
Cap using guns (Moros, Revelation)
- Controlled Bursts 4
Armortanking capitals (Thanatos, Nidhoggur, Archon, Moros, Revelation)
- EM Armor Compensation 4
- Explosive Armor Compensation 4
- Kinetic Armor Compensation 4
- Thermic Armor Compensation 4
- Capital Repair Systems 3
- Armor rigging 1
- Shield Management 4
Shieldtanking capitals (Chimera, Phoenix, Naglfar)
- Capital Shield Operation 3
- Shield Management 4
- Shield Rigging 1
- Mechanic 4
- Hull Upgrades 4