Did Someone Order a Buff Beam?

by CCP Games

Time to deploy a clichéd, yet fairly accurate, high school analogy. In any given educational establishment you will encounter a number of different and ‘colorful’ individuals. There are the Jocks, all swagger and sweat, and doing anything to impress the sorority chicks (that’ll be the fighter class in Valkyrie, then). There are the schoolyard bullies… towering hulks of bulk and brainlessness who prey on the weak and leave a trail of destruction behind them (yep, you guessed it, that’s the heavies). Then there are those who rush around with no regard for their own safety mopping up the mess left behind by everyone else and basically trying to make sure everything doesn’t fall apart. These are the real heroes, my friend. The selfless souls who simply want to make things right and get the job done. We are, of course, talking about the support class. Here are the crates you can fly should you choose such a role.

Craft: Banshee

SHIP Banshee cropped Unlocks at: Available Rank 5

Performance: Firepower: 4 Armor: 2 Shield: 6 Speed: 6

Weapons: Phaser, Head tracked Buff Beam, Spiderbots

Available upgrades: Armor, Shield

Primal Scream As with all starter craft the Banshee is designed with versatility in mind. Like the rest of support class it is super quick and both its Buff Beam and the Spiderbots can be used to heal teammates while also damaging enemies. Its primary Phaser weapon, while slow to charge, deliver an accurate long range beam that can be particularly useful in quickly taking out drones.

Craft: Guardian

SHIP Guardian cropped Unlocks at: 6,500xp

Performance: Firepower: 1 Armor: 2 Shield: 6 Speed: 6

Weapons: Gatling Guns, Head tracked Heal Beam, ECM Countermeasures

Available upgrades: Heal Beam range, Heal Beam heal, Heal Beam damage

Kill or Cure The Guardian retains the speed and Buff Beam capabilities of the Banshee but is able to take on a much more aggressive combat role thanks to the presence of the Gatling Gun as a Primary weapon and an ECM. As well as providing support, these more muscular weapons enable the Guardian to make a more significant contribution when eroding the enemy’s defences.

Craft: Warden

SHIP Wareden cropped Unlocks at: 33,000xp

Performance: Firepower: 2 Armor: 2 Shield: 6 Speed: 6

Weapons: Pulse Cannon, Head tracked Drain Beam, ECM Countermeasures

Available upgrades: Drain Beam damage, Pulse Cannon shield damage

Help is at Hand Armed with a primary weapon and buff beam that deal added damage to enemy shields, the Warden is an effective support ship for taking into battle. In addition to rapidly stripping shields away from enemy units, the Warden is a good craft for keeping ally ships healthy.

Craft: Sentinel

SHIP Sentinel cropped Unlocks at: 86,000xp

Performance: Firepower: 4 Armor: 2 Shield: 6 Speed: 6

Weapons: Phaser, Head tracked Vamp Beam, ECM Countermeasures

Available upgrades: Vamp Beam damage, Vamp Beam range

Waiting in the Wings As its name suggests you can use the Sentinel to watch and wait, healing teammates where necessary and swooping in to take out enemy shields when asked. The Sentinel is highly effective when properly deployed in battle.

Craft: Revenant

SHIP Revenant cropped Unlocks at: 125,000xp

Performance: Firepower: 1 Armor: 6 Shield: 2 Speed: 6

Weapons: Gatling Guns, Head tracked Corrupt Beam, Mines

Available upgrades: Mine cooldown, Shield, Mine damage

Beware! Collateral Damage OK, this ship has effective Gatling guns but the standout feature is the loadout of mines. These can deal out a lot of proximity damage but that applies to teammates as well as enemies. The balance between Buff Beam healing and dropping mines is an interesting skill to master. One of the more complicated ships on offer.

Craft: Siren

SHIP Siren cropped Unlocks at: 276,000xp

Performance: Firepower: 5 Armor: 6 Shield: 2 Speed: 6

Weapons: Phaser, Head tracked missiles, Mines

Available upgrades: Missile salvo, Phaser damage

Set Phasers to Kill The first support craft not to offer Buff Beam healing capabilities. Instead it provides a medium range and highly accurate Phaser along with missiles and proximity mines. In essence it’s more a fighter than a support vehicle but what it gains in speed and firepower it loses in durability.

Craft: Phantom

SHIP Phantom cropped Unlocks at: 422,000xp

Performance: Firepower: 6 Armor: 6 Shield: 6 Speed: 2

Weapons: Missile Pods, Head tracked Missile Pods, EMP Mines

Available upgrades: Missile salvo, Missile explosion radius

Call for Backup This is the second of only two support craft that come without a Support Beam. Instead, the Phantom has a unique weapon loadout: Missile Pods. It’s essentially an artillery unit enabling Phantom pilots to use either the fire and forget missile pods or the head-tracked missiles. Support here is less about healing and more about providing backup.

What are you waiting for support pilots? Get out there and start slapping on some sticking plasters.