Sunday, April 12, 2015

Triple Test Talos Terminated Triumphantly

The official forum feedback thread is seeing a little bit of traffic, and based on suggestions there I've now beaten the Triple Talos encounter with a Deimos.  I'm glad I suffered with other ships first, as it gave me the background to be able to use the Deimos effectively (or maybe this is just me trying to convince myself that the past few sessions weren't wasted, hah).

Here's my fit.  I DO NOT claim this to be optimized at all, but it is what I took on grid and had success with.  Now the tweaking can begin.
[Deimos, Abavus Durden's Talos Hunter]
Medium Armor Repairer II
Medium Armor Repairer II
Energized Kinetic Membrane II
Energized Thermic Membrane II
Magnetic Field Stabilizer II
Magnetic Field Stabilizer II 
10MN Afterburner II
Medium Capacitor Booster II
Cap Recharger II
Cap Recharger II 
Heavy Ion Blaster II
Heavy Ion Blaster II
Heavy Ion Blaster II
Heavy Ion Blaster II
Heavy Ion Blaster II 
Medium Auxiliary Nano Pump II
Medium Anti-Thermic Pump II

Hobgoblin II x5
Hornet EC-300 x5
Federation Navy Antimatter Charge M
Navy Cap Booster 400
This fit has passive resists of 88% Thermic and 92% Kinetic, with my skills.  I rep for 607 armor every 4.5 seconds.  The blasters do 538.2 dps, plus another 99 for the Hobs.

A few comments about the fit before I talk about strategy.

1. I debated using a MWD.  However, after playing the last couple of sessions with speed-tanks, I wanted to see if the slower AB version was survivable.  The MWD would speed up the fight (holy crap, the distances) at the cost of being a cap monster and signature bloom. Now that I've completed the mission, big tweaks will include the MWD.
2. Alternately, if I keep the AB, then the Cap Rechargers are redundant.  I needed to boost cap periodically but it was nothing too horrid.  With the AB, the mission took ~15 minutes to complete, most of it just flying through space and farming transversal; I'd like to speed up the fight.  However, if the final version of the encounter speeds up the Talos, we will probably need a web to be successful, so I don't mind having a midslot to sacrifice to 'future changes' at the moment.  (The initial version of the encounter had the Talos traveling wicked fast, but the current test version has them bumbling along at around 75 m/s; CCP hasn't said if they intend to revert the design or not).
3. I tried a single armor rep version and didn't seem like I was keeping up.  The dual rep works very well for those times when you get big hits from all 3 Talos and you're suddenly at 50% armor from full.

As I said ... more tweaking to do.


A. Start your active modules and enter the pocket.  Per previous guidance, put the armor reps out of phase (activate 1, wait until it's 50% cycled and start the second).
B. Enter pocket, immediately fly straight up and activate AB.  Gain some speed/transversal.
C. Pick a target.  I wouldn't go for the center (straight ahead) target, as it puts you at equal distance from both Mr. Left and Mr. Right.  I typically go for Mr. Right first, which puts you furthest from Mr. Left and hopefully taking less damage from him.  I tried to 'approach' the target and immediately took heavy damage; a spiral approach using the orbit buttons made the damage more manageable.  Initially you will be too far away to orbit.  Simply fly at him (double click in space) and a little off-axis (not directly in - keep some yummy transversal).  Once the orbit button lights up on the UI, orbit at 35km.  You will come in VERY slowly but should be able to tank the whole thing.  Once at around 45km, start halving your orbit distance - 20km, then 10km.
D. Once at about 10-12km, kick your drones out of the bay, click approach, and get on with business.  For the first target I used EC-300s to lock down the active target and mitigate some damage while you are close in.   Note:  You will be almost stationary while you fight the first goon, so reducing some damage taken via EW drones may help.  The other two will be wailing on you harshly as you dps.  (Next time I will try it without EC-300s, but was being conservative the first time through).
E. Once the target dies, double click to start moving, recall your drones.  At the moment you can WARP to the various turrets in the pockets if they are far enough away.  I picked one near Mr. Left and warped across the field and repeated my orbit/spiral approach pattern. If you warp to zero, you will take some damage from the turret - I right clicked and warped in at 10km.  For targets #2 and #3 I let the Hob2's loose to speed up the fight.  For the last target I simply approached and ate his face.

As fits continue to improve, all this business about spiraling in and EC-300s may become unnecessary.  

Like any PVE, once the secrets are out, the encounter becomes a lot more straightforward.  The fits I had been trying were either "Impossible" (Navy Drake) or "Difficult" (Gila).  Then along comes the Deimos and now it's probably "Easy."  So here I am talking about all these secrets and talking about optimizing a fit to shave more time off the encounter.  There's some irony in here somewhere, I'm sure.

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