Friday, August 21, 2009

Yes, you can fly it, but...

I learned a valuable lesson not too long ago: just because you can fly something doesn't mean you can fly it well! My story is as follows...

I had been training to be able to fly the big mining ships (the Mack and the Hulk), and running missions to earn a few ISK and grind out standing. I was running the Level 1s in my frigate and destroyer, and things were going okay. Then I reached Level 2s. I really started to have trouble with these to the point that it wasn't even fun and was sometimes even impossible to finish these missions on my own.

Therefore, I decided I had to get a cruiser if I wanted to keep running missions, so I got hands on the Amarr Cruiser and Medium Energy Turret skill books and started training. As soon as I could, I trained these skills and jumped into my brand new Omen ready to fit it out.

Let me tell you, it was a rude awakening! I could barely fit anything on that ship! Because my various skills were so low, I couldn't fit the armor I wanted, and I could only get 2 turrets online at a time because of power grid limitations (I think, I'm no expert!)

Anyway, I figured I'd try to use EveMon and the Battleclinic load outs to figure out what skills I should train and how I should fit the ship, but that didn't help either. Every one of the loadouts there that I found is loaded with Tech II and/or high end faction stuff that requires tons more skills than I need. As great as EveMon is, this capability is not well suited for the beginner. I needed something else.

Fortunately, my corporation, Phoenix Propulsion Labs (, has a solution. They have developed a very cool application on their web site for members that lays out "qualifications" to fly various classes of ships. In fact, because it is a socialist corporation where you are going to be given a ship by the corp rather than pay for it yourself, these qualifications for the ship are pretty much mandatory. You typically won't get your hands on a ship that you aren't qualified to fly (although they apparently made an exception for me with the Omen and we see how that worked out!)

Anyway, these qualifications don't mean you are going to be the best pilot of the particular class of ship, but you will be able to fit it out in a way that won't totally suck, and you should be able to hold your own in a fight with those skills.

I don't know if other corporations have anything as sophisticated as the qualification application, but I'm guessing they have something like a system of recommendations to help new pilots. Of course, my corporation's system is best! :-)

Anyway, I am now Amarr Cruiser qualified and am having a much better time piloting my Omen. I am now using the qualification requirements to train to be able to fly an Amarr battleship next.

If you would like to know more about PPL's qualification system (or anything else for that matter), feel free to convo me in game at Radd Trigon, drop by the "SHOP@PPL" channel, or post a comment on this blog.

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