H E L L F I G H T E R
Note: This document may not be correct. Some entries are more complete than others. This is a living document that keeps changing.
The Archer is a long range interceptor. It's unique wing configuration makes it stand out menacingly on enemy sensors, bristling with deadly SWAT (Super Wide Angle Tracking) missles. The Archers have proven time and time again their ability to fulfill their deadly mission of interception.
Class: Long Range Interceptor
Tactics: Don't take Archers into close combat. They're not very good at it. The best tactic is to lob missles from medium range... far enough to be out of your opponents effective range, but close enough that your SWATs have enough fuel for multiple passes. The SWAT missles are very dangerous at point blank since they have enough fuel for several passes at that range, but it's generally not worth putting the fighter at risk. If you want to make close range shots, make quick battle passes. But be aware that the Archer isn't a fast enough craft for this kind of tactic. The PDS (Point Defense System) missle system makes this fighter nearly missle proof if you keep your head. You need to orient the craft properly in order to effectively shoot down incoming missles with the PDS. They are forward firing. Even though the PDS missles can turn on a dime, they still shoot down missles to the fore much better than missles to the aft. If you're in danger of taking missles up your tailpipe, turn your ship to the side before you fire the PDS, and you'll live longer.
History: The Archer is the oldest fighter craft in production today, yet it still shows few wrinkles for its age. Introduced nearly 15 years ago as a heavy space superiority fighter, the Archer has enjoyed a long successful service record. In more recent years, heavy fighters like the Archer have been superceded by smaller, faster, more agile fighters in the space superiority role, a transition brought on by the advent of shielding technology and heavier fighter weaponry which could rip through all but the heaviest armor. Many thought the Archer's day was over, but the copious design proved to be a strong weapons platform with room for advanced sensor and targetting equipment. The Archer's mission was changed from space superiorty to interception. It's new sensor suite allows it to mount the new SWAT (Super Wide Angle Tracking) missle systems, deadly long range missles with wide 300 degree tracking arcs. As interceptors, what Archers lose in speed, they make up for in range and endurance. They possess a very strong stand off capability and can launch missles at craft which aren't even in visual range. Further, they can operate on extended patrols alone without the need for frequent refueling. The Archer may not be able to slug it out with today's superiority fighters up close and personal anymore, but its day is not over yet. And there's no end in sight.
The purpose of interception is to stop an incoming force before it can strike critical targets and slow them down until main forces can arrive. Fleas are excellent interceptors. They can get out to engage the enemy quickly and slow the enemy's advance by forcing them to engage or face direct hits from flack cannons at point blank. However, Fleas can't press the attack. They don't have shielding or armor to absorb that kind of punishment. The Hornet was proposed as a solution to this problem. It is fast, armed, shielded, and armored. Enough, at least, to hold its own against space superiority fighters. It sacrifices manueverability for raw speed and armament.
Class: Fast Interceptor
Tactics: The Hornets primary mission is relatively easy. Get there and engage. Killing fighters with it... now that's a bit tougher. Battle passes are the only way this fighter can fight. And it's quite effective when you get the hang of it. Make wide sweeping turns or cut the thrust and hammerhead the turns. Select your targets and stay on them. You can't turn well enough to change your mind once you're bearing down on someone. Let loose with a volley of scatterpacks before lancing them with you lasers as you dart by. Hopefully, the laser hits will fracture their shields enough to make them scatterpackfood, blowing up a moment later behind you as your missles converge on him. If you get the chance to, STOP and poundpoundpound them with your lasers for just a moment before jetting off again... after leaving them a second volley of scatterpacks to remember you by, of course. Only try this when you've got a clear shot. You may be more durable than a Flea, but head to head with a space superiority fighter, you'll still be the one pounded to dust.
The Flea is a high speed interceptor meant to harass incoming fighters at range. The snubby looking Flea fighters, the fastest, most agile fighters in known space, are little more than engines with cockpits and a gun strapped on. These fighters are deadly in the hands of a skilled pilot.
Class: High Speed Interceptor
Strengths: Extreme agility and speed Powerful shotgun
Weaknesses: No shields Eggshell armor Main weapon is very short ranged Difficult to fly accurately (it's too fast)
Tactics: Remember above all else you are an eggshell. Nearly any hit will put this fighter out of commission. Best tactics are to buzz around behind enemy fighters and stay out of their firing arcs. Stay away from concentrations of fire! Unlike heavier fighters, you have no shields, and stray shots will cripple or destroy your fighter. The Flea is very powerful when it's flown correctly and developing accuracy with it takes a lot of practice. This fighter packs a significant punch if it can put it on target. The streaker missiles are handy, but are largely used to shoot down other light fighters. Streakers are not heavy enough to seriously hurt larger fighters. The shotgun, however, is.
The Mosquito is a light harassment fighter. It's whole point in life is to be obnoxious.
Class: Light Harassment Fighter
Strengths: Hard to hit 360 degree auto aiming autocannon Can hyperspace when it's in trouble
Weaknesses: Eggshell Short range
Tactics: Buz around your targets. Stay out of their firing arcs. Plink them to death. Hyperspace anytime you get in trouble. You don't have enough firepower to hurt larger vessels like heavy bombers and capital ships. Victory through annoying the enemy!