Content Creation: Advanced Lowsec Gatecamps

In this article, we will extensively explore ways to enhance and perfect your gatecamp setup, and discuss levels of escalation you can implement in case of more serious engagements.

2 months ago

Latest Post Flight Academy: The Fleet Commander Training Program by Thaddeus Drake
Where we last left our gate camp - with Instalocker, Scout, Smartbomber, DPS and Logistics.

Previously in this series, we have covered the very basics of scouting and execution of a small scale Low Security Gatecamp. We then explored further optimising your Gate Camp with the addition of Smartbombers and Logistics Ships.

In this article, we will extensively explore ways to enhance and perfect your gatecamp setup, and discuss levels of escalation you can implement in case of more serious engagements.

At this level, Gate Camping should be treated like any other focused fleet, so you should be prepared to sensibly escalate if required. The best thing you can do: be on comms and be alert to dangers.

We will cover:


Information Gathering and Counter Intel

One of the biggest aspects of Camping AND Hunting is knowledge. Through Intel Gathering, we find out the nature of our opponent; what they may be flying, trends in their cargo, do they regularly fly in gangs or solo; and finally are they a potential enemy Cyno Ship. By it's very nature, the enemy can also use their own Information Gathering on you, to check for:

Information Gathering

PLH Overview

Many resources exist to gather Intel on your enemy:

Counter Intel

Enemy ships coming through the region can use the same tools as you, so you need to find ways to fool or trick the enemy.

This focuses on tricking Gate Checkers and the game's Number of Pilots in Local.

To fool Gate Checkers (and by extension Zkill) it is good practise to have your character's Black Ops Battleship in close proximity to the camp - and to have an active hunter in range searching for BLOPS targets. Once the Hunter snags a target, jump your BLOPS and kill the enemy ship. Then simply jump back to your camp and reship.

To the lay Player, they will see you make a kill on the gate via zkill or Gate Checker and will see that you have "moved" to a different system to engage a different target. In reality, you maybe left your camp for 3 minutes and jumped swiftly to a different system or region.

Another tactic is to split the gate camp over 2 sides of the gate as to reduce the amount of Pilots in Local shown on the ingame map. This will create a part Offensive and Defensive camp formation when you engage a target: half of the fleet will be ready on 0 and the other half will jump in and be at decloak range.

Adding Insta-HICS to your Gatecamp

Insta-HICS are the next evolution of your, now tired, Insta-Gnosis. Insta-Hics are unique in the sense that their tackle module is in the High Slot of the ship, meaning you can dedicate more Mid-Slots to Sensor Boosting. The biggest bonus of the Insta-HIC is Infinite Scram, using Warp Scrambling Scripts to nullify any Warp Core Stabilising on ships coming through the camp.

Unlike the Insta-Gnosis, the HIC generally stays stationary and relies on other ships to bump.

As we are dedicating Mid Slots to Sensor Boosting, generally your HIC will be stationary. Thus, we must rely on an allied Gnosis or our DPS ships to get bumps and webs on the enemy ship coming through the camp.

[Devoter, SPECTATOR - HIC]

Damage Control II
1600mm Steel Plates II
1600mm Steel Plates II
Energized Adaptive Nano Membrane II
Energized EM Membrane II
Energized Thermal Membrane II
Signal Amplifier II

Sentient Sensor Booster, Scan Resolution Script
Sentient Sensor Booster, Scan Resolution Script
Sentient Sensor Booster, Scan Resolution Script

M-36 Enduring Warp Disruption Field Generator, Focused Warp Scrambling Script
M-36 Enduring Warp Disruption Field Generator, Focused Warp Scrambling Script
M-36 Enduring Warp Disruption Field Generator, Focused Warp Disruption Script
Medium Knave Scoped Energy Nosferatu
Small Gremlin Compact Energy Neutralizer
Small Gremlin Compact Energy Neutralizer

Medium Trimark Armor Pump II
Medium Trimark Armor Pump II


Acolyte II x5
Hornet EC-300 x5


Nanite Repair Paste x100
ECCM Script x2
Small Ghoul Compact Energy Nosferatu x1
50MN Y-T8 Compact Microwarpdrive x1

Note: There are exceptions to this rule of stationary HICS - several people within RC use HICs with lower scan resolution that incorporate an MWD. By combining elements like Decloakers and other Instalockers, you can employ this tactic too for a mobile and tanky Fast-Lock-HICs.

By using multiple Warp Disruption Field Generators we can mix and match our scripts for those occasions where multiple enemies jump into the camp. By Scramming at decloak range and switching to long range Disruption if the enemy burns away, you can reliably hold down must  - if not all - ships that you lock on to. In most instances - you will have to supplement this with Stasis Webifying ships!

Insta and Fast Lock HICS provide utility to your camp to completely mitigate Warp Core Stabilisation, whilst also providing a High EHP platform to tank Gate Guns. At over 129k EHP for a basic fit, you can stay on grid for the duration of a kill or engagement - especially when complemented by Logistics.


Adding Command Bursts to your Gatecamp

Command Bursts are AOE Buffs that your Fleet gain from ships in the "Command" line - be it Battlecruisers, Command Ships, T3 Cruisers or Command Destroyers. They are huge force multipliers in all fleet engagements, and even more so in Gate Camps.

Illustration of Command Ship on gate covering all camp ships with Command Burst.

The benefits of Command Ships are numerous, those you should be focusing on:

These first two points are integral to the effectiveness of your Advanced Gatecamp. Not only do they improve your Instalock ships by improving their Tackle range and Scan Resolution, but you also further optimise your overall "Time-to-Kill" (TTK) - because the rest of your camp is also positively effected. DPS and EWAR can be applied more quickly due to faster lock times and longer range immobilisation.

[Damnation, SPECTATOR - LINKS]

Ballistic Control System II
1600mm Steel Plates II
Adaptive Nano Plating II
Damage Control II
Energized Adaptive Nano Membrane II
Reactive Armor Hardener

50MN Y-T8 Compact Microwarpdrive
Stasis Webifier II
Warp Scrambler II
Sensor Booster II, Scan Resolution Script

Heavy Assault Missile Launcher II, Nova Rage Heavy Assault Missile
Heavy Assault Missile Launcher II, Nova Rage Heavy Assault Missile
Skirmish Command Burst II, Interdiction Maneuvers Charge
Information Command Burst II, Sensor Optimization Charge
Heavy Assault Missile Launcher II, Nova Rage Heavy Assault Missile
Heavy Assault Missile Launcher II, Nova Rage Heavy Assault Missile
Heavy Assault Missile Launcher II, Nova Rage Heavy Assault Missile

Medium Trimark Armor Pump II
Medium Trimark Armor Pump II

Acolyte II x5
Hornet EC-300 x5
Valkyrie II x5

Nova Rage Heavy Assault Missile x1000
Armor Energizing Charge x1000
Armor Reinforcement Charge x1300
Rapid Repair Charge x1000
Electronic Hardening Charge x1000
Electronic Superiority Charge x1000
Sensor Optimization Charge x1300
Interdiction Maneuvers Charge x1000

The above ship can be seen to be optimised as a dual role - both Links and DPS with EWAR utility. Depending on if the Links ship is an active toon or a passive alt will alter your fitting. Do you need additional Capacitor Warfare? Add a full rack of neuts onto the Links. Need more fast applying Webs? Use a Loki with fast lock and links. Treat them somewhat as a Swiss army knife.

More advanced techniques exist - like using double Command Destroyers fit for speed to Micro Jump Field Generator enemy ships away from the gate that are crashing back through. They can also be used if a ship manages to escape to a station.

Credit to SaB0TaG3

Finally, remember in your fleet composition you have access to links on non-T2 Battlecruisers. Whilst not as effective - and taking up a utility High Slot - they are useful in a pinch when dedicated links are not available. Furthermore, they can be used to supplement and existing battery of buffs, by taking Tank Links or filling gaps in Skirmish or Information Warfare.


Adding Cyno Recons to your Gatecamp

Recon Ships serve a dual purpose on Gate Camps by providing additional, heavily bonus-ed EWAR, and the ability to light Cynosural Field Generators.

Placement of the Recon Cyno is pivotal. An "Active" Cyno Ship actively contributes EWAR to the Fleet so can be much closer. A "Passive" Cyno Ship should be perched, ready to warp down and light a Cyno if required.

The latter is especially important at peak activity times around EU and US timezones, where organised opponents from Wormholes or neighbouring regions can arrange their own traps for your Gatecamp.

Active Recon Cynos

Active Cynos do not refer to the type of tank on the ship, rather the way it is played. An active Cyno will contribute more significantly as an EWAR platform, due to the inherit bonuses of the ship line beyond it's ability to cloak and use a Cynosural Field.

By nature of their bonuses to interdiction modules, the Arazu and Rapier make the most optimal Active Recon Cynos. The Arazu in particular can be configured to be part of the Fast Lock Team and a Cyno.

By staying 3.5km away from gate, the Arazu can remain cloaked until enemies appear in local. When gate flashes, you would then Decloak >> Activate Sensor Boosters >> Overheat Points

[Arazu, SPECTATOR - ACTIVE]

1600mm Steel Plates II
Energized Adaptive Nano Membrane II
Energized Adaptive Nano Membrane II
Damage Control II

Sensor Booster II, Scan Resolution Script
Sensor Booster II, Scan Resolution Script
Sensor Booster II, Scan Resolution Script
Sensor Booster II, Scan Resolution Script
Warp Disruptor II
Warp Scrambler II

Covert Ops Cloaking Device II
Covert Cynosural Field Generator I
Cynosural Field Generator I
[Empty High slot]

Medium Trimark Armor Pump II
Medium Trimark Armor Pump II

Hobgoblin II x3
Hornet EC-300 x5

Liquid Ozone x722

Passive Recon Cynos

Passive refers to the manner in which we use these Recon Cynos. Generally, these will be alts of members of the camp not utilised elsewhere - and will sit cloaked at a perch on grid ready to pounce down and light.

Passive Recon Cynos will generally be used in an emergency only - and should not be activated unless a senior member of the team calls for an escalation of an engagement on the Gatecamp grid.

Note: It is forbidden to escalate with Supercapitals in Derelik without explicit confirmation from RC Leader: Rocket X. DO NOT drop capitals without passing control of the camp to an experienced Capital FC.

Conventional beginner hunter fits work well for this, as well as more optimised Hyperspatial/Ascendancy variants - we are generally looking for tankier variants than Active Cynos.

Escalation

As previously stated, escalating engagements on Gatecamps must be handled by a senior member of the team - but that is not to say you as an individual cannot prepare and ensure your camp is covered.

Having at least 1 Active Tank Force Auxiliary ready to respond and in fleet at all times is highly encouraged - and at Advanced Level Gatecamps is all but compulsory.

In addition, having 1 High Angle Weapon Dreadnought on standby can quickly dispatch of Covert Ops T3 drops in a pinch.

The key to all of this is to inform the Capital FC quickly of what you have on standby, along with the nature and location on grid of your Recon Cyno.

The most common escalation you will see, or take part in, on an Advanced Gatecamp will be a Black Ops Drop onto a tankier target. These do not require permission to execute - but you should take all precautions to make sure it is safe to do so. Through a combination of scouting and Intel gathering, you should make an informed decision on if dropping Black Ops is right or dangerous.


Adding a Decloaker to your Gatecamp

Decloaker setup on Gate.

The role of the Decloaker is one an alt can quite happily occupy. It is a specialised frigate that can do one thing; go fast!

By burning really fast at an enemy when it first appears on the overview, you can mitigate their opportunity to activate a Cloaking Device.

Above example used an Interdictor in Nullsec, but the lesson applies.

The following fit is most optimal - be warned it has basically no health! You aren't here for a killmail on this ship, it has a very distinct purpose. DO NOT ENGAGE WITH IT.

[Dramiel, SPECTATOR - DECLOAK]

Overdrive Injector System II
Overdrive Injector System II
Overdrive Injector System II

5MN Microwarpdrive II
Medium Shield Extender II
Multispectrum Shield Hardener II
Cap Recharger II

[Empty High slot]
[Empty High slot]
[Empty High slot]

Small Auxiliary Thrusters II
Small Auxiliary Thrusters I
Small Auxiliary Thrusters I


Strong DPS Ships with Utility

The final piece of the puzzle in a successful gatecamp: the DPS! Ironically this is the most difficult part of your camp to fill out. Everyone and their Aunty will offer up Insta-Gnosis, Insta-HICS, Logi alts, Smartbombers - but very few people remember what you actually need to stand up against an enemy fleet if you are engaged! The ability to kill other ships that have logi support.

There are many ways to camp and many fleet compositions you can bring. Throughout this series we have discussed semi-static Armour fleets, so in that we shall continue. For our purposes, the Drekavac provides huge bang for your buck.

[Drekavac, WARMIND 2.15]

Damage Control II
1600mm Steel Plates II
Energized Adaptive Nano Membrane II
Energized Adaptive Nano Membrane II
Entropic Radiation Sink II
Entropic Radiation Sink II
True Sansha Explosive Armor Hardener

Tracking Computer II
50MN Quad LiF Restrained Microwarpdrive
Medium Capacitor Booster II
Tracking Computer II

Veles Heavy Entropic Disintegrator
Small Gremlin Compact Energy Neutralizer
Small Gremlin Compact Energy Neutralizer
Small Gremlin Compact Energy Neutralizer

Medium Trimark Armor Pump I
Medium Trimark Armor Pump I
Medium Trimark Armor Pump I

Hornet EC-300 x5
Valkyrie II x5
Warrior II x10

Mystic M x1000
Occult M x1000
Navy Cap Booster 800 x18
Baryon Exotic Plasma M x1000
Meson Exotic Plasma M x1000
Tetryon Exotic Plasma M x1500
Nanite Repair Paste x100
Optimal Range Script x2
Tracking Speed Script x2
Cap Recharger II x3
Power Diagnostic System II x1
10MN Monopropellant Enduring Afterburner x1
Medium I-ax Enduring Remote Armor Repairer x3
Stasis Webifier II x1
Warp Disruptor II x1
Warp Scrambler II x1

As you can see from the above this ship has huge refit potential to provide additional Interdiction, Capacitor Warfare or Fleet Logistics. This is all in a package with strong EHP and huge DPS.

Other ships are obviously available - strong contenders include the Sacrilege, Prophecy and conventional brawling setups work very well here.


In Summary

In terms of numbers and fleet composition:

Our Perfect Lowsec Gatecamp setup.

And there you have it! The perfect Low Security Gate Camp! Stick to the rules above, and the lessons learned in this series and you will be Eve famous for being horrendous campers in no time.

Thaddeus Drake

Published 2 months ago