Monday, 12 April 2010

How to Fit a Covert Ops Ship

Yesterday I lost my Helios Covert Ops ship while attempting to tackle a Proteus, a T3 Gallente Strategic Cruiser.

If you think that sounds a bit stupid, then you are right - it was stupid. It was just one of a number of mistakes I made yesterday.

Another mistake I made was tackling the same pilot in his own Helios Covert Ops ship and letting him escape before I could kill him with my one drone. In my mind this was by far the biggest mistake I made because it was a mistake in the way I fit my ship.

Let me explain - on my Covert Ops I fitted a Warp Disruptor, so when I tackled the Helios he was able to simply use his MicroWarpdrive to get out of range of me, before warping away. If instead I had fitted a Warp Scrambler, then he wouldn't have been able to use his MicroWarpdrive at all, and I would probably have a nice Helios killmail to show for my efforts.

So it got me thinking about how to fit a Covert Ops ship, especially since I had to go and buy myself a new one. Here is my short guide to fitting a Covert Ops ship.

1. Firstly fit a Covert Ops Cloaking Device II. This cloak is built specifically for your ship and you wouldn't be 'covert' without it.

2. Fit a Scan Probe Launcher. The primary purpose of your Covert Ops will be to scan in wormholes, so this is an important piece of gear. You have a number of options here. If you are intending to live a life of pacifism and not get involved in any PvP then you might want to use the Core Probe Launcher I. This launcher will not be able to use Combat Probes, but it will free up CPU for other modules on the ship. The second choice is an Expanded Probe Launcher I, which will allow you to use both Core Probes and Combat Probes. Both of these items have a Faction equivalent, the Sisters Core Probe Launcher and the Sisters Expanded Probe Launcher. If you have the isk, they are very worthwhile. They both give a 5% bonus to scan probe strength.

3. Fit a MicroWarpdrive or Afterburner. In conjunction with your cloak the propulsion mods will keep you safe from harm. The top speed of your ship isn't terribly important, so your only criteria for picking which module to fit should be based on what other modules you're hoping to fit on the ship. The MicroWapdrive is better from a safety perspective, while the Afterburner will enable you to squeeze more utility modules into the mid slots.

4. Fit two Small Gravity Capacitor Upgrade I rigs in the rig slots. These will each give a 10% scan strength bonus.

5. Fit speed and maneuverability modules in the low slots. Which modules you fit is a matter of taste. But any mix of Inertia Stabilizers, Overdrive Injectors and Nanofiber Internal Structures will work nicely.

6. Fit some tackle. As I found out this should probably be a Warp Scrambler. If you are interested in wormhole PvP you will find that in most cases a Covert Ops ship will normally be the first on the scene and it's useful to tie down a ship before everybody else arrives, just in case they get away. The Scrambler can be well paired with a Stasis Webifier to stop fast targets in their tracks. Some fits can also include both a Scrambler and a Disruptor if you need.

7. Fit some pewpew. This is only really an option if you have any CPU or PowerGrid left. In my case for my Helios this is simply a matter of putting a light scout drone in the drone bay. For other Covert Ops ships it will mean putting a weapon in a spare high slot.

8. If you have any space left it is likely to be in the mid slots. So try and squeeze in a capacitor mod, such as a Cap Recharger II.

Don't worry if you haven't managed to fit a module in every space. A Covert Ops ship is not one that requires a very neat fitting - just try and squeeze in the modules you want it to have. I hope that helps!


  1. nice to see another wspace blog out there! I'll make a mental note to plug it in our next show - but please do send me an evemail so I don't forget :-)

    I fit my Cheetah the same way and managed to put a webber and a ship scanner in there as well, although I have an AB not a MWD. Ofc there is no DPS but it's nice to get a quick point on a rather harmless target so that your fleet can warp to you and take care of the DPS

  2. Ditto on another wormhole space blog. Good to see you out in the field and learning all about it.

    I'm also taking the liberty of adding you to the W'hole Pack of EVE wormhole related blogs.

    One other thing to consider - I have recently moved away from inertial stabs in the lows because of the large signature penalty. I'll take the higher speed and only slightly lower agility to be able to add as much time on them targeting me as possible.

  3. Thankyou both for your comments, both good suggestions. I must admit I've never really considered using just an AB, but I guess it's pretty rare that I really need the speed of the MWD.

  4. Hey good post. I never really considered the use of cov ops as a tackle. Will certainly look into that. Good suggestions.

  5. Just found this blog and it looks like it'll be a good un', its nice to have another blogger/poodcaster in WH space to alt tab to when the little red blobs get too much.

    Like your helios the last time I tried to tackle a t3 in my cov ops I ended up in a pod and worse we missed the ship.

    Some thoughts:

    It is actually possible to setup a Helios with an afterburner, warp scram, medium shield extender and an explosive hardner. This has a spare mid slot for EWAR, a tracking disruptor or sensor dampener would probably be best.

    The cool thing about this is that it actually has a 31dps explosive shield tank, which is almost 50% of the damage unbonused Warrior IIs will do to you (80dps), not including your sig size and the effects of the afterburner.

  6. Guide edited to include using Afterburners.