Friday, June 14, 2013

Prowler Math

On Wednesday Ripard Teg decided to pick blockade runners as the subject of his Fit of the Week.  As I spend a lot of time in a Prowler, I was interested in his opinions.  My ship follows all of his basic principles his first one. 
"Your rigs are two Cargohold Optimizations.  If you put anything else there, you will eventually be sorry that you did.  Yes, I know, putting Polycarbs or Low Frictions here is awesome.  Resist.  Sooner or later, you'll need the extra cargo room."
I currently have a Low Friction Nozzle Joints and a Polycarbon Engine Housing fit.  Back when I did my research on blockade runner fits I read that fitting Cargohold Optimizations was for carebears and would get a ship killed.  But since Ripard usually knows what he's talking about, I decided to do a little math.

First, exactly what are the differences in cargo capacity between someone going for maximum align time and someone desiring maximum cargo capacity?  The below table shows the cargo capacity  a Prowler has when fit with the two rig combinations and the number of Expanded Cargohold IIs.

Expanded
Cargohold II
Low Friction Nozzle Joints/
Polycarbon Engine Housing
2 x Cargohold
Optimization
040635373
151806850
266048734

The numbers are interesting, but what does that really mean?  To compare what the extra cargo capacity costs in terms of align time, I took the data I gathered from all the distribution missions I ran in low sec from 1 May to 13 June, put them in bands by cargo requirements, and came up with the following table.

Mission
Cargo
% of
missions
Low Friction Nozzle Joints/
Polycarbon Engine Housing
2 x Cargohold
Optimization
0.1-400035.6%3.43.7
4800-500041.6%3.73.7
5400-600022.8%4.24.3
7200-8000NANA5.1


Interesting.  For 41.6% of the missions I did in low sec, I would have had the same align time if I had used a Prowler fit with Cargohold Optimization rigs as with the more agile combination.  That also assumes that I religiously fit for max align times (i.e. fit my ship with the maximum number of Nanofiber Internal Structure IIs every time I dock).  I don't.  Through experience I learned that I can bust through a gate camp just as well if I have one Expanded Cargohold II fit as if I have nanos in both low slots.  I opt for the quickness of getting in and out of the station over getting that .3 second alignment time advantage.  With the game evaluating time in one second increments anyway, does that .3 really make a difference?  I haven't noticed.

In other words, after doing the math, I really don't experience a difference for 77.2% of the distribution missions I do.  The other 22.8%?  The difference is 0.1 seconds.  Seriously?

The only thing the math shows is that at the higher end, the align times are 5.1.  Knocking that under 5 seconds would make a noticeable difference.  I could spend the money on a +5 implant, or I could resort to using fleet boosts.  I found this in the Evelopedia...
"A Squadron Commander will grant his leadership bonuses to all members of his squadron, including himself."
I already do this when I mine and run security missions.  Why not distribution missions? Both my main pilots have trained to fly command ships and have Skirmish Warfare trained to V.  I just have to set the pilot actually running the mission as the squad commander and the align times look like the table below.

Mission
Cargo
% of
missions
Low Friction Nozzle Joints/
Polycarbon Engine Housing
2 x Cargohold
Optimization
0.1-400035.6%3.13.4
4800-500041.6%3.33.4
5400-600022.8%3.83.9
7200-8000NANA4.6

Sub 4 second align times on all the distribution missions I currently run and under 5 seconds when doing the larger missions.  Not bad.  I should add in the benefits when doing the storyline mission "Materials for War".  At level 4, the ore required takes up 9600m3 of space.  I have to make two trips in my current configuration.  With a maximum cargo capacity setup and using Giant Secure Containers, I can reduce that down to one.

EDIT: This only works if you have another pilot in system.  But nice for dual-boxing or in a fleet.

I have two Medium Cargohold Optimization Is building now and can update my ship the next time I log in.  I really can't argue with math.

11 comments:

  1. You may be interested to know that the effective align time is rounded up to the next positive integer. Thus there's no difference between 3.7 and 4.0 aligntime.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Proof for that?

      I have never heard of this rounding of align times, sounds fishy.

      Delete
    2. I don't recall the specific numbers or terminology, but it has something to do with server ticks

      Delete
    3. Yes, sever ticks work at 1sec intervals.

      So you only can warp/jump every other second. But as the time you need to align depends on how much angle you have to turn... it isn't really a fix amount of time. Even a marginally better EFT align time will *sometimes* allow you to jump 1sec earlier (and sometimes not).

      That is my understanding of the mechanics, anyway.

      Delete
    4. But if we're talking about aligning after a gate jump the angle to turn is always a full align (you drop into a new system with no alignment)

      Delete
  2. Re: the Leadership bonuses

    Am I reading this right? It sounds like anytime you undock you should form a fleet of just yourself to get your character's Leadership bonuses applied. Or does this only apply when you also have an alt in fleet?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Bonuses only apply if you have a second pilot in your fleet and in space in the same system.

      Delete
    2. Just saw that in game. But its still an option if you dual-box or fleet up with someone.

      Delete
  3. Nifty post. And no, the 0.3 seconds usually doesn't matter. Align time rounds up to the next server tick. 3.1, 3.3, and 3.8 are all the same align time: 4.

    But lots of people don't know that which is why I said it twice in the BR post. I didn't know it myself until about a year ago.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Just remember that my skills are all at V, unless a couple are at IV. Other people's mileage may vary.

      Delete
  4. I use the prowler for setting up a small pos in neutral space, after the pos is set up I pop the cyno ( skidding into the shield) to summon a rorqual.
    I then switch the shp for a mining barge. The Rowler is the only industrial ship that can use both a cyno and a covert ops cloak. If I was looking for a blockaide runner for cargo I would use something with mor cargo

    ReplyDelete