A NEWBIE'S GUIDE TO CALDARI SHIPS By: GC13 E-mail: Grand_Commander13@hotmail.com TABLE OF CONTENTS I. INTRODUCTION 1. What this guide covers 2. Version history 3. The lingo 4. A review of ship attributes 5. What skills should I get? II. WEAPONS 1. Railguns 2. Hybrid Charges 3. Missile Launchers 4. Missiles 5. ECM III. SHIPS 1. Frigates 2. Destroyers I. INTRODUCTION 1. What this guide covers This guide is intended to help out anybody who is new to the ships of the Caldari race. It will discuss the weapons characteristic of the Caldari (Railguns, Missiles, and ECM) as well as their early tech one ships (tech two being considered outside of the scope of "newbies," much as some would consider battleships). The frigate and destroyer classes are both discussed, discussing the usefulness of each ship in those two classes. This guide is also hosted at some of GC13's webspace, and can be downloaded as a PDF or an HTML file at http://evefiles.mysterious-mysteries.com . 2. Version history 01-05-2007: The guide is put online. 3. The lingo There are lots of terms out there, and it would be very difficult to find an exhaustive list of the abbreviations and terms a person could find even talking about only Caldari ships. Still, here are some of the more important terms you will come across (the function of various modules can be looked up in the Item Database): Modules: PDS (or PDU): Power Diagnostic System. BCS (or BCU): Ballistic Control System. MFS (or magstab): Magnetic Field Stabilizer RCU: Reactor Control Unit. WCS: Warp Core Stabilizer. Stab: Inertia Stabilizer. Nano: Nanofiber Internal Structure. Nos: Nosferatu. Neut: Energy Neutralizer. Scram: Warp scrambler. Webber: Stasis Webifier. Jammer: One of the ECM modules. Multispec: ECM - Multispectral Jammer. Racial Jammer: Any of the other kinds of ECM modules. SB (or booster): Shield booster (size usually indicated). SB: Can also mean Smartbomb. Repper (or just rep, or rarely AR): Armor Repairer (size usually indicated). Invuln: Invulnerability Field. MWD: Microwarp Drive. AB: Afterburner. Terms: Tackling: In PvP, using Warp Scramblers/Disruptors and Stasis Webifiers to prevent a target from escaping. Tanking: Setting your ship up to be able to absorb large amounts of damage through resistances, pure HP, repairing/boosting capability, or a combination. Named module: When an item is neither a manufacturable tech one item (a 125mm Railgun I, for instance) or a tech two item (a 125mm Railgun II), but an improved version of the tech one item (a 125mm 'Scout' I Accelerator Cannon). Distinguished from normally undesirable "Basic" modules by the inclusion of the "I" somewhere in the name. 4. A review of ship attributes Many people are confused about what various attributes on the ship's Attributes tab are for. As such, this guide covers them: Powergrid Output: Measured in megawatts (MW). One of the two fitting attributes that determine what you can place on your ship. Powergrid primarily constricts you from placing big guns on your ship without making sacrifices elsewhere, but there are other powergrid-intensive modules as well. CPU Output: Measured in teraflops (tf). The second fitting attribute. CPU does not rise as fast as powergrid as you rise in ship size, and serves primarily to moderate just what kinds of secondary systems (shield hardeners, ECM modules, warp disruptors, etc...) you can fit. Calibration: A fitting stat identical in function to powergrid and CPU, but used only for rigs (which, in turn, use nothing but rig slots and Calibration). All standard (i.e. non-faction) tech one ships have 400 Calibration. Low slots: All slots are a space where you can put a module (each of which will go in only one kind of slot and can be freely added or removed at the fitting screen in a station). Low slots primarily contain gear for armor tanking (armor hardeners, plates, and repairers), weapon damage upgrades (Magnetic Field Stabilizers and Ballistic Control Systems for Caldari), and various hull modifications (Nanofiber Internal Structures and Warp Core Stabilizers for two common examples). Med slots: Usually referred to as "mid slots" by players. For Caldari especially, mid slots are where you need to make tough decisions about your fitting. Mid slots contain all form of electronic warfare (most importantly for Caldari your ECM, warp jamming, and stasis webifiers), afterburners and microwarp drives, and shield tanking gear (shield hardeners, boosters, and extenders). Hi slots: These slots are mostly restricted to weapons. Turrets, launchers, smartbombs, and nosferatus/energy neutralizers all go here. "Medical" mods such as remote shield boosters, capacitor transfer arrays, and remote armor repairers also go here, allowing you to aid your allies. Rig slot: As the name implies, a slot specifically for rigs. Nothing else can go in these slots, and rigs can only be placed here. All tech one ships have three rig slots. Note that rigs cannot be removed and re-used, making them unlike modules. Hardpoints: All launchers and turrets (including mining lasers which count as turrets) require hardpoints of their respective type in addition to a high slot to fit. Smartbombs, "medical" mods, and nosferatus/neutralizers do not. If you run out of turret hardpoints (for instance, the Moa only has four), you cannot fit any more turrets (even if you have six high slots like the Moa). The same logic applies to missile launchers and launcher hardpoints. Shield, armor, and structure: These are simple, so they are getting lumped together. These are your hitpoints. You lose shields first, then armor, then structure. When your structure goes to zero, your ship blows up (though your ship suffers no ill effects until then). Note that when your shields get low (it starts at 25%, but that number is lowered if you get and increase the Tactical Shield Manipulation skill), a small amount of the damage will go to your armor before your shields are completely depleted. Damage resistance: These reduce damage of the specified type to their respective HP layer (shield, armor, or structure) by the stated percentage. These resistances can be further modified by hardeners and resistance amplifiers for shields, hardeners and resistance plating for armor, and a damage control module for structure. Structure has no base resistances and so takes 100% damage from everything unless a Damage Control is active. Capacitor capacity: In many ways this is the lifeblood of your ship. Using modules in combat drains capacitor energy, which takes time to regenerate. Guns, shield boosters, afterburners/microwarp drives, and ECM modules are all likely to be your capacitor's biggest drains in battle. Likewise, enemy nosferatus will steal your capacitor, and you can steal an enemy's capacitor with your own nosferatus. Recharge time: Your shields and capacitor regenerate themselves over time. Obviously a lower regeneration time will mean it regenerates faster. The regeneration is not linear; when you are 30% shields or capacitor, you are regenerating at your quickest (approximately 2.4x as quickly as simple division of max amount by recharge time would indicate). As you move away from 30% in either direction, natural recharge rate slows. Max velocity: Quite simply how fast you can go when you finish accelerating. Speed is very useful for increasing your transversal velocity (making you harder to hit with enemy turrets) and for controlling the range at which combat occurs. Mass: Mass, combined with a hidden attribute that is the same for every ship of a given size (frigate, cruiser, etc...) determines how quickly your ship accelerates (as a proportion of its max velocity) and turns. Having a higher mass will also mean you get less of a bonus from afterburners and microwarp drives than the module says you will get. Capacity: How much room you have in your cargohold to hold stuff. Drone capacity: How much room you have in your drone bay to hold drones. Light scout drones take 5 m^3 each, medium scout drones take 10 m^3 each, and heavy drones take 25 m^3 each. Not every ship has a drone bay. Smaller drones can hit smaller ships better, and do more damage per m^3 they take up than larger drones. Five medium drones will still heavily out-damage five light drones, however (and likewise for heavies versus mediums). Volume: Only important if you have a friend with a Carrier to put your ship into. The (X m^3 packaged) stat, however, is more useful, as you can even fit a repackaged cruiser into a good industrial ship. Repackaged, shuttles are 500 m^3, frigates are 2500, destroyers are 5000, cruisers are 10000, battlecruisers are 15000, and battleships are 50000. Maximum targeting range: How far out you can target an enemy to shoot at them. Scan resolution: How quickly you can target enemy ships. A higher number means you target faster. Your targeting speed also depends on the enemy's signature radius. Max locked targets: Determines how many targets the ship will let you have at once if your skills are high enough. Sensor strength: You will have zero for three of these, and a number for Gravimetric. This number is used solely to determine how hard your ship is to target jam with ECM modules. A higher number here means you are harder to jam, but since the system is entirely probability based, you can still be jammed even if you get this number over a hundred. Signature radius: How large your ship shows up as on an enemy's sensors. In a practical sense, the smaller this number is, the longer it will take an enemy to get a target lock, the less their turrets will hit you, and the less damage their missiles will do (as long as your signature radius is less than the explosion radius of their missiles). Propulsion strength: Does not do anything at the moment, and is only visible on the Item Database. 5. What skills should I get? This question, like all other questions as open-ended as it, is very difficult to answer. Rather than lay down some dogmatic answer, I will lay down a few lists of skills that are helpful to Caldari pilots in their respective areas. In each category, the skills are vaguely in order of importance, but your mileage may vary. IN GENERAL: Engineering Electronics Weapon Upgrades Energy Management Energy Systems Operation Navigation SHIELD TANKING: Shield Operation Shield Management Shield Compensation Shield Upgrades MISSILES: Missile Projection Missile Bombardment Rapid Launch GUNS: Motion Prediction Sharpshooter Rapid Firing Surgical Strike Most of these are fine at getting to level three right now and level four soon, but Engineering, Weapon Upgrades, and Electronics are crucial for your ability to fit your ship well. It may seem like a long time when you are first starting, but getting Engineering and Electronics up to level five and Weapon Upgrades to level four once all your other important skills are at acceptable levels will reap great dividends in the future. This is by no means an exhaustive list of support skills. These are, however, what I think a new player should concentrate on getting first. II. WEAPONS 1. Railguns Railguns are the Caldari gun of choice, and get bonuses from the hybrid turret line of Gunnery skills. Railguns emphasize dealing damage at a long range and the optimal range bonus many Caldari ships get for them further enhances this ability. Just like all guns, railguns need to worry about the problems of optimal range, falloff, and tracking speed. The Tracking Guide at eve-online.com goes into greater depth than I will here, but here are the basics you need to know about guns: Shooting at anything up to your optimal range will leave you missing no shots due to range. Going out to optimal + falloff has roughly half of your shots missing due to range, and you basically cannot hit past 2xfalloff + optimal. Your target's transversal velocity causes you to land fewer or weaker shots with your guns. You can reduce transversal velocity by properly using manual flying (look at the direction your target is flying, and set yourself to be flying in the same direction and at the same speed), which in the case of NPCs and inexperienced players can be as simple as tricking them into flying straight at you as you fly away from them. Firing from longer ranges makes you miss fewer shots due to transversal velocity. Be warned that even if you are orbiting a larger target, the transversal velocity you are creating will still negatively impact your ability to hit. Small railguns go on frigates and destroyers, medium railguns go on cruisers and battlecruisers, and large railguns go on battleships. Just like ships, railguns have a set of attributes. Powergrid usage and CPU usage should be self-explanatory, optimal range and falloff range have already been explained, and volume only matters for carrying the item in your cargohold. Still, the rest of these attributes are important as well. Capacity: How much ammunition, measured in cubic meters (m^3) that the gun can hold. The more ammunition it can hold at once, the longer it can fire without reloading (which takes ten seconds). Activation cost: The amount of energy deduced from your current capacitor energy every time the gun fires. In addition to being modified by the Controlled Bursts skill, different hybrid charges will reduce this by different percentages. Rate of fire: The amount of time in between shots. Charge rate: How many rounds this gun consumes when it fires a shot. Damage modifier: This number is multiplied by the base damage on the loaded hybrid charge to calculate the average damage dealt by a successful hit on your target. Charge size: What size of hybrid charges this gun accepts. Tracking speed / accuracy: This gun's ability to hit quickly-moving targets. A higher number is better. Tech level: Whether the gun is tech one or two. Only tech two guns can use tech two ammunition. Signature resolution: The gun's ability to hit smaller targets. A smaller number is better. Railguns come in three different sizes (small, medium, large) each with three different railguns in each size category. Likewise, each different railgun come in six separate flavors (tech one, Carbide, 'Scout', Compressed Coil, Prototype, and tech two). Named railguns are improved over standard tech one railguns in the following ways: Less CPU usage, greater optimal range, higher damage, and less activation cost. Each step of improvement gives a 5% bonus over the standard tech one variety, putting the prototype gauss gun at +20%. Tech two railguns require more powergrid and CPU than the standard tech one version and do not get the reduction in activation cost, but have the same damage and optimal range as the best named version of that gun: the prototype gauss gun. What makes tech two guns worth using over prototype gauss guns is the fact that they are manufacturable and therefore cheaper, and they are also capable of using the tech two ammunitions: Spike and Javelin. They also get +2% damage per level of the correct Railgun Specialization skill, which applies ONLY to tech two railguns. For now though, stick with 'Scout' accelerator cannons if you want to buy gear better than the standard tech one variety; Scouts are not too expensive, but still have a 10% boost over the normal tech one gun. Railguns have their damage and rate of fire affected by the Magnetic Field Stabilizer, the damage mod for hybrid turrets. The following table shows, for the standard tech one version of a gun, (from left to right) Powergrid Usage, CPU Usage, ammunition Capacity, Activation Cost, Rate of Fire, Optimal Range (in meters), Falloff range (in meters), damage modifier, and tracking speed. All small guns have a signature resolution of 40m, all medium guns have a signature resolution of 125m, and all large guns have a signature resolution of 400m. SMALL RAILGUNS Grid CPU Cap Activ. RoF Optimal Falloff Dam Tracking 75mm Gatling Rail 2 5 1.0 1.67 2.6 6,000 3,000 1.5 0.13 125mm Railgun 7 15 0.4 2.15 3.25 9,000 5,000 2 0.085 150mm Railgun 10 25 0.2 3.34 4.25 12,000 6,000 2.75 0.07 MEDIUM RAILGUNS Dual 150mm Railgun 80 32 4.0 5 3.9 12,000 6,000 1.5 0.042 200mm Railgun 180 35 2.0 6.45 4.88 18,000 10,000 2 0.028 250mm Railgun 225 40 1.0 10 6.38 24,000 12,000 2.75 0.023 LARGE RAILGNS Dual 250mm Railgun 1250 55 8.0 15 5.85 24,000 12,000 1.5 0.0175 350mm Railgun 1875 60 4.0 22 7.31 36,000 20,000 2 0.01167 425mm Railgun 2500 70 2.0 30 9.56 48,000 24,000 2.75 0.009625 2. Hybrid Charges The ammunition you put in your gun is just as important as the gun you use. The type of ammunition you use influences your damage, optimal range, and can reduce the capacitor you use when firing your gun. DAMAGE CHARGE Small Medium Large Range bonus Cap. use Iron 5 10 20 +60% -30% Tungsten 6 12 24 +40% -27% Iridium 7 14 28 +20% -24% Lead 8 16 32 0% -50% Thorium 9 18 36 -12.5% -40% Uranium 10 20 40 -25% -8% Plutonium 11 22 44 -37.5% -5% Antimatter 12 24 48 -50% -0% Charge damage doubles when it goes from small to medium, and doubles again from medium to large, allowing bigger guns to have the same damage modifier as small guns but still do more damage with the same type of ammunition. Longer-ranged ammunition also uses significantly less capacitor to fire than short-ranged ammunition does. 3. Missile Launchers Railguns may be the Caldari gun of choice, but missiles are the Caldari weapon of choice. Missiles have a large amount of benefits for a new player: they are unaffected by tracking or range issues (they will hit anything within range for full damage), and deal only one damage type per missile, making them perfect for use in missions where enemies have a single weakest resistance for both shields and armor. Missile launchers come in seven different varieties. Like railguns, there are three different sizes (frigate/destroyer, cruiser/battlecruiser, battleship), but each size has a launcher designed for short-range/higher damage missiles and a launcher designed for long-range/lower damage missiles. There is also the assault missile launcher, a cruiser-sized missile launcher that fires light missiles for anti-frigate work. Missile launchers use significantly fewer of the weapon attributes, but those that they do use work like the railguns. Launchers vary in their powergrid usage, CPU usage, capacity, volume, and rate of fire. Like railguns, there are also six versions of each missile launcher (tech one, 'Malkuth', 'Limos', a name involving a number, 'Arbalest', and tech two). Named missile launchers work rather differently from named railguns, however. Going from a tech one launcher to the +5% variety gets a 5% improvement to rate of fire and ammunition capacity, as well as the maximum -20% CPU usage. The +10% variety gets the 10% CPU reduction, the 15% variety gets the 5% reduction, and the +20% variety gets the 15% reduction. All named launchers work this way except for cruise missile launchers, which work like railguns with the better launcher always getting the better CPU reduction. The tech two launchers get the 20% rate of fire improvement and an ammunition capacity one-third greater than the standard tech one version, and also require more powergrid and CPU as would be expected. Missiles have their damage and rate of fire affected by the Ballistic Control System, the damage mod for missiles. The following table shows, for the standard tech one version of a launcher (from left to right), Powergrid Usage, CPU usage, ammunition Capacity, Rate of Fire, the name for the +15% version, and the type of missile used. SMALL LAUNCHERS Grid CPU Cap RoF +15% Name Missile Fired Rocket Launcher 4 15 0.15 4 OE-5200 Rocket Standard Missile Launcher 8 25 0.6 15 TE-2100 Light Missile MEDIUM LAUNCHERS Assault Missile Launcher 50 35 0.9 12 SV-2000 Light Missile Heavy Missile Launcher 100 50 0.9 15 XR-3200 Heavy Missile Heavy Assault Missile Launcher 120 45 0.75 8 XT-2800 Heavy Assault Missile LARGE LAUNCHERS Cruise Missile Launcher 1250 60 1.0 22 XT-9000 Cruise Missile Siege Missile Launcher 1750 80 1.5 24 ZW-4100 Torpedo 4. Missiles While railguns have eight separate types of ammunition to put into each gun of a different size category, each missile launcher (which the exception of the Assault Missile Launcher) uses its own type of missile. Each missile type has four versions: one for each damage type. These versions all have the exact same stats (raw damage, max velocity, etc...) and only differ in the type of damage they do. But while there was not much to say about the attributes of the launchers, there are some new attributes for the missiles you need to be aware of. While missiles are unaffected by range except for their maximum range, and are unaffected by tracking, the speed and size of your target can still be factors in how much damage you do. If their signature radius is smaller than your missile's explosion radius or if their velocity is greater than your missile's explosion velocity, your missile will hit for reduced damage. Missiles also have a maximum velocity they are able to reach in order to pursue a target. They also have a maximum flight time, after which they self-destruct doing no damage. Finally, each missile type has its own volume, unlike hybrid charges which are all the same volume for a given size. The following table shows (from left to right), missile Volume, Explosion Radius, Explosion Velocity, maximum Velocity, Flight Time, and Damage. SMALL MISSILES Volume Rad Exp.Vel Velocity Time Damage Rockets 0.005 20 2000 2250 2 25 Light Missiles 0.015 50 1750 3750 5 75 MEDIUM MISSILES Heavy Missiles 0.03 125 750 3750 10 150 Heavy Assault Missiles 0.015 125 750 2250 3 100 LARGE MISSILES Cruise Missiles 0.05 300 500 3750 20 300 Torpedoes 0.1 400 250 1250 30 450 Rockets and Torpedoes are not affected by the skill Guided Missile Precision, but every other missile type has its explosion radius reduced by the skill. Rockets and Torpedoes are affected by every other skill just like every other missile. For ease of use, the following table shows the names of each missile, categorized by size and damage type. SMALL MISSILES EM THERMAL KINETIC EXPLOSIVE Rockets Gremlin Foxfire Thorn Phalanx Light Missiles Sabretooth Flameburst Bloodclaw Piranha MEDIUM MISSILES Heavy Missiles Thunderbolt Widowmaker Scourge Havoc Heavy Assault Missiles Torrent Hellfire Terror Fulmination LARGE MISSILES Cruise Missiles Paradise Cataclysm Wrath Devastator Torpedoes Mjolnir Inferno Juggernaut Bane 5. ECM ECM (short for Electronic Counter Measures) is the Caldari racial electronic warfare type. ECM uses a chance-based system to allow you to remove your target's ability to lock any targets for twenty seconds, and removing any locks they have made already. This stops your target from doing anything offensively for the full twenty seconds, after which you have a chance to jam them again. Like turrets, ECM modules all have a powergrid usage, CPU usage, activation cost, optimal range, and falloff range. They also all have an activation time / duration of twenty seconds. The optimal and falloff ranges on ECM work much like they do on turrets; as you exceed your optimal range, you become less and less able to jam your targets. ECM modules also have a jamming score for each of the four sensor types: Gravimetric (Caldari), LADAR (Minmatar), Magnetometric (Gallente), and RADAR (Amarr). Racial jammers will have a high score for the correct sensor type and a low score for the other three, while multispectral jammers have a moderate score for all four sensor types. The base strengths for racial jammers are three for the strong type and one for the other types. Multispectral jammers have a base of two against everything. To determine a jammer's chance of successfully jamming a target, the game takes the jammer's strength (modified by ship bonuses, the pilot's Signal Dispersion skill, equipped Signal Distortion Amplifiers, and distance from the target if further away than the jammer's optimal range) and divides it by the target's sensor strength (modified by any equipped and activated ECCM modules). This number, multiplied by 100, is the percent chance for that jammer to jam the target on a given cycle. For instance, a jammer with a Magnetometric strength of four attempting to jam a Gallente ship with a Magnetometric strength of ten would have a forty percent chance of successfully jamming the target. Spatial Destabilizers are strongest against Gravimetric sensors, Phase Inverters are strongest against LADAR sensors, Ion Field Projectors are strongest against Magnetometric sensors, and White Noise Generators are strongest against RADAR sensors. Multispectral jammers are equally effective against all four, but are weaker, have shorter range, and need more capacitor and CPU. Named jammers work like named guns, with the 5% steps improving their CPU usage, activation cost, optimal range, and strength. Tech two jammers get the +20% to optimal range and strength, and use more capacitor and CPU. III. SHIPS 1. Frigates Every pilot in Eve starts out in a frigate, and frigates are an effective ship class that you can get a lot of mileage out of even after you have skilled up to fly battleships. Frigates are cheap and fast, and very fun to fly. A Caldari player's first priority should be to get out of their Ibis and into either a Condor (for beginning fighting missions) or a Bantam (for mining). Once that is done, the pilot then must decide if they would like to go down the path of railguns (the Merlin, Moa, Ferox, and Rokh) or missiles (the Kestrel, Caracal, Drake, and Raven). It is also possible to train for ECM (the Griffin, Blackbird, and Scorpion) for support in groups. The Bantam is an excellent mining ship. Nothing more, nothing less. Though its description says it is ideal for trading, a pilot will find very frequently themselves with too little capacitor to warp all the way to a gate, even with the skill Warp Drive Operation at level three or four. Do not use a Bantam if you will have to haul anything; a Kestrel will not take too long to save up for, and will give you a larger cargo capacity and will not have the same problems warping as a Bantam. A Badger would be even better, but that requires another skill and another investment. The Condor is a fun little ship to fly around in, and at least better than an Ibis. It also gets a velocity bonus for missiles and rockets, pushing the range on rockets out far enough for a player with low skills to be able to use them well. Unfortunately, the Condor is quickly made obsolete when a player is able to advance to one of the two main combat frigates: the Merlin and the Kestrel. The Merlin is a very sturdy frigate with its bonus to shield resistances and four mid slots that can all be used to tank its shields. It does suffer somewhat from a dual weapon system (meaning any damage mods added affect only half of its weapons), but the 2/2 turret/launcher setup still works well for it, and is very easy to fit with a powerful setup. This is GC13's favorite frigate. The Kestrel is very different from the Merlin. Lacking both the Merlin's tanking bonus and a fourth mid slot, the Kestrel gets four missile launchers and a damage bonus for them. Unfortunately for the Kestrel, it is also rather tricky to fit with four standard missile launchers (a Power Diagnostic System or a Reactor Control Unit is likely needed to be able to fit a shield booster as well), and does not get the Condor's missile velocity bonus or its speed, making it difficult to use rockets against NPCs in the beginning. Still, it is a powerful missile boat, and is the favorite frigate of a very large number of people as well. The Griffin is overlooked by many people because of the Blackbird. That does not change the fact that the Griffin is capable of, with some decent skills, running three racial jammers and not costing very much if it gets destroyed (and it WILL be an enemy player's first priority to destroy, just like any other ECM ship). The Griffin is only really effective in PvP. The Heron is only really useful to use scan probes, either for exploration or for finding players hiding in a system. 2. Destroyers Each race gets one destroyer, and for the Caldari that is the Cormorant. Getting a double optimal range bonus (50% for being a destroyer, and 10%/level from the Destroyers skill), the Cormorant is capable of getting some amazing ranges with its seven small railguns. Still, the Cormorant only has one low slot, which will ideally have a magnetic field stabilizer in it for optimum damage. It does have four mid slots, however, allowing it a great deal of versatility in improving its mobility, locking speed, or survivability. Destroyers, while fun, are not incredibly useful when fighting NPCs. They will make missions a bit easier, but level ones are easy enough for frigates, and a new player will likely want a cruiser for level twos. You can pass up Destroyers on your way to cruisers if frigates are enough for you to do level ones with, or go ahead and get yourself a Cormorant if you think you need more firepower to run missions with. For PvP, they are excellent at swatting enemy tacklers, and so have their use there as well.