Saturday, November 11, 2017

Hunter's Call

Testing... Testing...

By: George Argyropoulos
a/k/a Dragon_Bane   

The second raid of the set brought with it a new specialized target for the Hunter fleet. While I don't quite understand the need to change the targets on the second iteration instead of the third, it wasn't as bad as I thought it would be. This was a nice surprise given the previous week. I am not happy with regard to the option for the lower players or those that did not have full fleets as yet.

Let me make this clear as well, I am autoing the targets. This was the intent of the hull and honestly, it made the raid far more palatable for me this month.

The testing that was done last month by Thor-1SP  and myself panned out nicely for this target as well. The fleets we used were the ones I reviewed in this article. While it performed better last month, it still performed as designed in these targets as well. Do I wish it still pulled the same damage as it did last month with no crew? Of course. I'm just resigned to this cycle at this point.

Last month's run:

This month's initial maiden run:

What I found was that I could get the repair times down close to or to 1 coin repair per engagement, particularly running one of the rare crews. Some of the results were interesting and others reinforced my initial design path which is always a good reaffirmation to get.


I tried to get a pic of a median repair. Some of these crews were consistent, some were a little erratic. I tried to run a minimum of about 5 engagements for each crew.

Control :

What can I say? This was pretty consistant damage on auto which is a testiment to both the target design and the build. I'm not sure how I feel about the #2 and #5 boats consistantly being hammered in these targets, but...While this is edging close to double last month's results, I'm resigned to this. Hopefully next month it stays somewhat around the same. If it gets too much higher I don't think it will be an acceptable total. This is an auto fleet. They did a fantastic job in design for this particular target. It provides a value for my investment in this hull and fleet. I would hate to see that marred in the last month. The no crew runs were pretty consistent and I think the high was 1 h. 5 min. damage.

Dragonslayers :

This was an interesting finding. A lot of people questioned the use of Strike Warheads in the build because of the loss of reload. I did not think the difference in reload time gained was enough to overcome the extra damage one would get with the Strike Warheads. With the addition of the ECM any difference should have been exacerbated. Instead the results were very much akin to running no crew. This crew also produced some erratic results, but not too bad. The high was in the same neighborhood as running no crew and the low was around 45 min. damage.

Sea Serpent :

The go-to crew of many using the Hunters. This crew is particularly useful in autoing the target as evade plays a much more significant role in that type of engagement rather than if you were driving. The results for the most part were consistent using this crew but there were a few outliers that went up close to 50 min. damage. The low was 32 min. damage.

Fearless Blitzers :

I used this crew in the hopes of changing the timing to mitigate some of the THORNs damage in the target. Surprisingly it worked a little. This was a crew whose results were a little erratic. The high was just under an hour damage and the low was 39 min. damage.

Demo Squad :

This is my favorite crew to run with the Hunter fleet on auto. I ran many hits on this trying to get a good feel on the damage range and found that about 4 out of 5 times it would end up under 30 min. damage per engagement. I had one single outlier of 42 min, but generally any time it went over 30 min. of damage it would hover around the 36 min. mark. I also took advantage of this crew in later testing for maximizing the potential of the Apex.

Grease Monkey :

The venerable Grease Monkey. This one was an erratic crew, as was to be expected. When one of the edge hulls (#2 or #5) got whacked good, it would throw off the driving pattern so that the end result varied widely based on the RNG hits of the engagement. As is typical, this crew is better used in conjunction with another rather than on it's own. I also took advantage of this crew in later testing for maximizing the potential of the Apex.

Steelheads :

I had tried this crew the first day and was getting mediocre results. I sort of brushed it off. A comment below made me a little curious and I tried it again tonight. (11/11) I was pleasantly surprised. While not exactly consistent, it did yield some very nice numbers for the most part. Much like Demo 4/5 were close with one outlier. 4/5 were between 34-38 minutes and I had one for 46 min. damage. Not bad at all, particularly on auto!

Maximize Potential :

One other aspect to take into consideration when trying to mitigate costs is the mechanics of the hulls and fleets with which we attack this target. The Apex Hunter has a much better repair coefficient than do the regular Hunters. You can run the campaign back-to-back until it is time for repairs. Using the Demo Squad you can get 6 engagements in before you need to come in for repairs. Using the Grease Monkey you only get 5. Now you can either repair this now, use a Grease Monkey to repair and then go back out with the Demo, or...

Once here you can pull the Hunter out by itself and repair. It works out to 2 coin and a little bit of wait time. You can leave the Hunters at half damage and run the target again. Using the Demo Squad, you can get 3 more hits in before you need to repair the Apex again. This works out to 2 coin for 3 targets. THIS is where I would use the Grease Monkey to further maximize potential.

Repair the Apex using the Grease Monkey, put it back in the fleet with the Demo, go out and hit 3 targets, come in and repair the Apex alone. This will net you 3 targets for essentially one coin repair and a little bit of wait time depending on the RNG over three engagements.

So that's it. This pirate is rather pleased with the options presented to us in the upper area of the raid. That said, I really REALLY wish there were better options for the lower level players. The A sets are horrid, particularly if you are using the Hunters. Those targets are clearly designed for Fangtooth fleets. I hope in next months targets there is a little bit of adjustment to take into consideration players that are running Hunters on less than a full tilt build. For fun, here is this same fleet attempting to auto an A set. The 81 and 83 went off without a hitch, but the 85... Hoo boy... Pay particular attention to the last hit and the absolute craziness therein. Good luck in the raid folks!!


  1. steelhead crew, the one hour one, does pretty good in the hunter target as well i have found

  2. Funnily enough, I had tried it on the first day and wasn't seeing much of anything. After reading your post though, I decided to try it again today and I was pleasantly surprised at the results. Thanks!!