Thursday, August 27, 2015

How many Banshees?

I'm going to talk a bit about the newest hull prize in the FAT - the Banshee sub.

It's like a Spectre, but with that "new standard" 8/4/4 slot configuration.  We haven't seen anything like that on a sub before.  The compare chart looks like:

(as always, thanks to for the unlisted stats)

This sub is definitely a base prep specialist - I think it's a bit slow for FvF.  Base prep with subs has been difficult lately, subs usually can't sneak into a base when a thermal imaging ship is used.  The Banshee is built with enough armor, armor slots, and resistance that it can take some hits as it enters bases and still make it.  To clarify its submerged defense - it has increased defense against penetrative, concussive, and radioactive defense while submerged.  But the weapon still has to be able to hit underwater to do any damage.  So its 60% submerged radioactive defense doesn't mean launchers will do some reduced damage against submerged Banshees - they will still do no damage.  But the Banshee will have 60% resistance against a fire pool that would normally damage the Banshee underwater.  So if you really want to prep some guards - load em up with armor and make a run for it.  Welcome to the land of the multi-day repair bill...

Also note that the weapon slots are underwater only.  No Deluge or Downpours on these.

So first - what to do with the 4 specials?  I'd avoid the combo specials like Magnus or Stealth System and just go for the basics... Engine3 or Speed5, Cat3, Bat3, and probably Concussion Warhead.  You could also try an Evade or Resistance as your fourth special - you have plenty of weight to work with.  For weapons 8 Assault Torpedo B are obvious, but you could do the Siege Z if you are feeling confident in your stealth.

Of course, the big complaint about these subs is that they are a limited hull prize in the Forsaken Arena Tournament.  Only players who get the #1 spot in their group, or those who get #2-10 with over 10000 points will be able to build 4 hulls.  So how useful are fewer Banshees?  I'll compare to Spectres.  My R5 Spectre build that I still use (never found time for Nighthawks) is 6 B torps, Magnus Drive, Battery 3, 2 D2S and 1 D2V armor.  

I'll try the most basic Banshee build I described above - 8 B torps, Speed 5, Bat3, Cat3, Concuss3, 2xD2S and 2x D2V.

See them in Huggys:!50ZZ02U00L15152O1D4H4H4H4H4H4H0ZZ06Y00L0L1515341D1G1A4H4H4H4H4H4H4H4H0ZZdB

With no component retros, the Banshee has slightly lower visible range (higher base range, but more cloaking), more speed (29 submerged / 24 vs. 21.5 for Spectre), and much more dive time (133 sec vs 84).

The Spectre wins on build time - 6 days 8 hours vs. 10 days 9 hours for the Banshee.

But lets look at DPS.... the Spectre R5 has a net 10% accuracy bonus (+20 from hull, -10 from Magnus), and the Banshee has a +30% (all from hull).  The Banshee also has a built in 60% concussive damage bonus and 33% bonus from the special.

So lets compare DPS:

("Single Hull DPS" multiplies the weapon DPS by 6 on the Spectre & 8 on the Banshee)

So by the DPS, a single Banshee is just as effective as 3 Spectres (even ignoring the longer dive time & higher speed).  A fleet of 2 Banshees outdoes a full fleet of Spectres (and builds faster too).  Just remember rank matters... it might take a while for you to rank your Banshees high enough to catch up to your legendary subs.

So will that make you feel better about winning two in the FAT?