A non-coiner's approach to BP

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Unicorn Overlord
Joined Oct 2011 Posts: 7,169

Thought I’d start a new semi-guide on my approach to the game, initially covering the following topics, which there are a number I need to flesh out.

  • ·        Overall
  • ·        Raids
  • ·        Shipbuilds
  • ·        FM
  • ·        TLC
  • ·        Ranking
  • ·        Catching up
  • ·        Base defence

 

Overall

I strongly believed a skilled non-coiner can keep up with this game. And relatively easily at that these days. You are trying to keep ahead of the masses, as that is where the difficulty is of the game is generally balanced to. You need to build smarter and approach targets smarter than the average player and you will be able to keep up. It is literally as simple as that. It does mean though, that you may need to sacrifice some PvP elements in the short term – particularly if you are behind the power curve.

How do you build and approach targets smarter than average? Well, either figure it out for yourself, or look at the many available resources around on approaches that work. Coiners are my friends. They often test out what works and what doesn’t work before I even have to consider my builds.

The whole game is simply a series of challenges and puzzles. You can make a choice – either whine about it, or try to figure it out. I will always try to figure it out, and in 99% of cases there is a way to meet the challenge without spending a single coin.

When something is newly released, my first thought is simply, it is what it is, and it is the same for everyone. So, how can I use it to get further ahead in my game? That being said, if it’s not going to get me further in game, then I’m still likely to get it, although not as a huge priority, just to ensure it doesn’t set me back on the FM at some stage, or alternately it becomes a useful item in future, or I’ve misjudged its value.

 

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    Unicorn Overlord
    Joined Oct 2011 Posts: 7,169
    edited 14 Feb 2017, 8:51PM

    Raids

    Raid difficulty

    Every raid gets adjusted to basically a ‘reasonable’ level. We saw the raid difficulty backed off significantly in the Awakening last raid. Other raids may get tuned upwards. But at the end of the day, if you’re up with the current fleets, raids are a relatively simple task to get all the prizes, as they are generally balanced to players who don’t quite have the perfect fleet.

    My raid approach

     

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    Unicorn Overlord
    Joined Oct 2011 Posts: 7,169

    Shipbuilds

    Strategy

    Generally my approach is to prioritise my builds as follows:

    ·        To get me to the next level in PvE

    ·        To make PvE tasks easier/quicker (eg Tideseekers for Uranium)

    ·        PvP ships – toss up between guards and offensive ships. Due to the number of tokens given out I have a lot more PvP ships these days than ever before.

    In terms of actual shipyard time management there’s a few things you always need to have in the back of your mind:

    ·        The number of hulls you can get out before a vxp weekend

    ·        The number of completed hulls you can get out before the next raid, and what any partially complete hulls will look like.

    ·        If you don’t have enough time to build a full ship, in some cases it might be worth having a blankish hull with all defensive specials to use as a tank. In other cases it might be more worth building it as a glass cannon and running it behind your other ships. It depends on the type of raid as to which decision is best.

     

    Token management

    There are certain times when I make sure I save up my tokens, rather than use them.

    ·        When there is a raid where we know we are getting ‘the hull’ for the next raid. I’d always go into that raid with full tokens from the previous FM as I know I’m going to want to get as many hulls as possibly out for vxp

     

    Rolling the dice

    The game is one of imperfect information. You never know when a better weapon / special / hull is going to come along. I often tend to hedge my bets when I’m building into the unknown. I’ll never get it perfectly right, but never get it completely wrong either.

    For example, before the mauser was released, when building my cannoneers they had a mix of weapons that would do damage, and also break through walls, as we did not know if the targets were going to have walls.

     

    Plan ahead, but don’t be afraid to change direction

    Where am I most exposed at the moment? Citadels. I do not have them except for a H.Cit

     

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    Unicorn Overlord
    Joined Oct 2011 Posts: 7,169

    FM

    Getting to tier 4, and followed by tier 5 as soon as possible should be everyone’s goal. The build tokens you get there makes a huge difference. Fortunately there are plenty of guides out there on how to get there as quick as possible.

     

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    Unicorn Overlord
    Joined Oct 2011 Posts: 7,169

    TLCs


    ...

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    Unicorn Overlord
    Joined Oct 2011 Posts: 7,169

    Ranking

    Ranking is absolutely critical to your ships. A skulled ship will fire 4x more often than a virgin ship.

    VXP weekend is your time to maximise your ship’s performance. The main goal is to work out as quickly as possible what is the most efficient way to rank your ships. The door was largely closed this time round to fast and efficient coin-free ranking – particularly with the 100 targets which would only give vxp by damage received. But there are ways that you could use the 99s with some success, but I didn’t have time to really try them this weekend.

    Things that I always try are to check are whether I can use other ships that are already ranked to either soak up damage, counter missiles/morts, pull stationary targets etc etc. Or even prep ranking targets with another fleet before bringing in what I want to rank.

    Even with this latest vxp weekend you could have ranked two ships to 70%+ by simply using a crew and suiciding on 100s each time they were repaired.

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    Unicorn Overlord
    Joined Oct 2011 Posts: 7,169

    Playing catch up

    ·        Only build what you know works

    ·        Grind out a raid hard if it has a hull / special / weapon that will potentially catch you up

    ·        Get on top of the FM asap

     

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    Unicorn Overlord
    Joined Oct 2011 Posts: 7,169

    Base defence

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    Unicorn Overlord
    Joined Oct 2011 Posts: 7,169
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    Unicorn Overlord
    Joined Oct 2011 Posts: 7,169
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    Unicorn Overlord
    Joined Oct 2011 Posts: 7,169
    edited 25 Jan 2017, 1:40AM
    What is occupying my shipard for this month?

    Completed
    • Blankish H.Cannon (engine, nuc accel, with thuds/siege z/ 1 earthshaker)
    • Blankish Ironclad
    • Vend refit to put on HVR x 4
    To do before the raid
    • Finish H.Cann completely
    • H.IC is currently building, so will finish that too
    • Partially complete the blank IC before the raid, unless we have an extra week, then it will be fully completed
    • Build another Spite using my tokens.
    What am I thinking about for the next month?
    • Dunno. Depends what comes out, but my options will be either another couple ironclads, or PvP stuff, or if i start getting concerned about my lack of FM type hulls - citadels. But I would hope that the new ship for the next raid comes out in March, so I can skip citadels altogether. (Just like I did with Centurions)
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    Unicorn Overlord
    Joined Oct 2011 Posts: 7,169
    edited 27 Jan 2017, 6:07AM
    For my cannons, this is how they looked mid raid

    https://www.dahippo.com/bp/ship/#!y43P7J011110000342U2F6P4D2M2M2M2M2M2M2M2M2M2MP7I0250000342U2Y6P6AAKAK5C232C2C2M2M2M2MP7I0000025342U2Y6P6AAKAK2M2M2M2M2M2M2M2MP7I0000025342U2Y6P6AAKAK5C5C5C5C2N2N2N2MP7I0000025342U2Y6P6AAKAK2C2C2C2C2C2M2M2MdD

    and this is the build i'm aiming for

    https://www.dahippo.com/bp/ship/#!y43P7L0111125342U2Y6P6AAK2N2N2N2N2N2N2N2N2NP7I0111125342U2Y6P6AAK2N2N2N2N2N2N2N2N2NP7I0111125342U2Y6P6AAK2N2N2N2N2N2N2N2N2NP7I0111125342U2Y6P6AAK2N2N2N2N2N2N2N2N2NP7I0111125342U2Y6P6AAK2N2N2N2N2N2N2N2N2NdD

    but i'll probably leave a number of mausers that i already have on them rather than refit to millenniums.

    Given we have an extra week this month, that gives us at least an extra 17 build days, so i'm probably going to have some spare build time. I could potentially replace a few of those mausers with this extra time.

    That will then give me time next month to build whatever I want really. So much for long build times .........
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    Unicorn Overlord
    Joined Oct 2011 Posts: 7,169
    edited 27 Jan 2017, 6:17AM
    January 2017 TLCs

    Heavy Metal, the easy way is apollos and BB crew. I even use my Rets to clean up the corrosive towers. Didnt bother doing a vid, as its no different from any other apollo type campaign, except you don't even need the BB crew if you drive very carefully. I did the first two PPs without BB, but then used it for the third as i was in a hurry. Here's a vid that is not mine showing the basics. 



    Roguelike

    I don't actually need the prizes, but i'm using the campaign for practice. I suspect i need a bit more practice to really memorise the targets, and the best path, as for target three, i'm still struggling to close in on every tower before it fires. It has shown me though that I do need to complete those refits in the previous post, as even with my blankish H.Cann, i don't really have enough margin for error as i'd like because I dont bring down the turrets quite quickly enough. 

    Here's specs vid of the final PP. Still comfortable to do without coining if you're careful, as most levels you can do damage free, or with minor damage if you make a few mistakes. Its only really level 3 that is quite punishing due to the rapid targeting by the longer range ballistic turrets.


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    Unicorn Overlord
    Joined Oct 2011 Posts: 7,169
    edited 6 Feb 2017, 8:50PM
    i've made a slight change to my cannoneer build for slightly more ballistic resistance as i already had d5c on a couple ships. Will see how it goes. SHould work well still i think. Also not sure how many of my mausers i'm going to keep rather than put on millenniums.

    https://www.dahippo.com/bp/ship/#!y43P7L011111V342U2Y6P6AAK2N2N2N2N2N2N2N2N2NP7I011111V342U2Y6P6AAK2N2N2N2N2N2N2N2N2NP7I011111V342U2Y6P6AAK2N2N2N2N2N2N2N2N2NP7I011111V342U2Y6P6AAK2N2N2N2N2N2N2N2N2NP7I011111V342U2Y6P6AAK2N2N2N2N2N2N2N2N2NdD

    my urgent refits are to make them all the same speed, just in case they release another TLC.
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    Unicorn Overlord
    Joined Oct 2011 Posts: 7,169
    edited 9 Feb 2017, 10:13PM
    A new TLC gives me an extra Ironclad thanks to a bunch of tokens. (Using my blank h.tide / scatter tides the campaign was a cake walk)

    I finally got round to using those spite tokens to build a new spite as well, just using a standard TFC build more or less.

    I've also decided to keep most of my mausers (16 in total) rather than refit my Cannoneers, so that I will have time to make sure I have my ironclad fleet basically up to speed as well. I will have a H.IC and 3 regular Ironclads for the raid to auto whilst i will drive my Cannons.

    I'm also going into the raid with 6 days of build tokens from the FM (unless i get lucky and get a 3 day from my last run) just for a bit more flexibility.
  • niveklodar
    niveklodar
    Potential Threat
    Joined Jan 2013 Posts: 56
    wouldn't it be true if this were still the case.

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    Unicorn Overlord
    Joined Oct 2011 Posts: 7,169
    wouldn't it be true if this were still the case.

    wouldn't what be true? i'm not sure what you are saying.
  • ty.fennicks
    ty.fennicks
    Greenhorn
    Joined Oct 2013 Posts: 5
    bort said:
    A new TLC gives me an extra Ironclad thanks to a bunch of tokens. (Using my blank h.tide / scatter tides the campaign was a cake walk)

    I finally got round to using those spite tokens to build a new spite as well, just using a standard TFC build more or less.

    I've also decided to keep most of my mausers (16 in total) rather than refit my Cannoneers, so that I will have time to make sure I have my ironclad fleet basically up to speed as well. I will have a H.IC and 3 regular Ironclads for the raid to auto whilst i will drive my Cannons.

    I'm also going into the raid with 6 days of build tokens from the FM (unless i get lucky and get a 3 day from my last run) just for a bit more flexibility.
    how do you hold so many tokens, it only lets me hold 2 ship build tokens
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    Unicorn Overlord
    Joined Oct 2011 Posts: 7,169
    bort said:
    A new TLC gives me an extra Ironclad thanks to a bunch of tokens. (Using my blank h.tide / scatter tides the campaign was a cake walk)

    I finally got round to using those spite tokens to build a new spite as well, just using a standard TFC build more or less.

    I've also decided to keep most of my mausers (16 in total) rather than refit my Cannoneers, so that I will have time to make sure I have my ironclad fleet basically up to speed as well. I will have a H.IC and 3 regular Ironclads for the raid to auto whilst i will drive my Cannons.

    I'm also going into the raid with 6 days of build tokens from the FM (unless i get lucky and get a 3 day from my last run) just for a bit more flexibility.
    how do you hold so many tokens, it only lets me hold 2 ship build tokens
    2 x 2 days from tier 4/5 and 2 x 1 day from tier 5 is 6 days in total.

    i dont think i've ever landed a 3 day yet from tier 5 since it was changed ... but surely one day i will. Hopefully just before a hull raid.
  • ty.fennicks
    ty.fennicks
    Greenhorn
    Joined Oct 2013 Posts: 5
    ohhh kool, thanx, i forgot about teir 5, lol i cant make it to tier 5 yet thanx 4 the reply
  • patricia.graham.144
    patricia.graham.144
    Greenhorn
    Joined Aug 2016 Posts: 14
    You obviously haven't had ships, fleets, prizes, blueprints, etc. go missing or you have coined enough to get support...
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    Unicorn Overlord
    Joined Oct 2011 Posts: 7,169
    ohhh kool, thanx, i forgot about teir 5, lol i cant make it to tier 5 yet thanx 4 the reply
    no problem. try to get to tier 5 asap. makes life a lot easier.

    You obviously haven't had ships, fleets, prizes, blueprints, etc. go missing or you have coined enough to get support...
    no, nothing missing so far that i can remember. well not that hasnt affected everyone and has been fixed for everyone. it probably doesnt happen to a high proportion of the player base. But if something did go missing i'd have to get it again. I dont coin at all so no support for me.
  • patricia.graham.144
    patricia.graham.144
    Greenhorn
    Joined Aug 2016 Posts: 14
    Must be nice not having to deal with the imposed handicap that some of us have to deal with. I guess if I were in the same privileged situation you are I would agree with your non-coining summation.
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    Unicorn Overlord
    Joined Oct 2011 Posts: 7,169
    edited 15 Feb 2017, 8:15AM
    Must be nice not having to deal with the imposed handicap that some of us have to deal with. I guess if I were in the same privileged situation you are I would agree with your non-coining summation.
    i'm not really following. You have imposed a handicap on yourself? I worked my way though to the position I am in now.

    I've also posted a couple guides on starting from zero to effectively get where I am now, even starting years later.

    My most recent restart: https://www.kixeye.com/forum/discussion/645526

    My earlier restart: https://www.kixeye.com/forum/discussion/492678

    My original guide: https://www.kixeye.com/forum/discussion/280508/p1 (now long in the tooth, but many principles still apply).

    **Edit** Ah, sorry. missing BPs / ships etc. Yes if that happened to me i'd then work to catch up again. I'm not sure i'd describe not losing bps etc as a privileged position. The vast majority of players would not have lost any ships / bps. That said, if i did lose one ship, i'd probably hardly notice it.
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    Unicorn Overlord
    Joined Oct 2011 Posts: 7,169
    edited 18 Feb 2017, 1:08AM
    Rising shadows raid

    So i'm all ready for the raid. My h.cann / cann fleet is skulled and my H.iron/3 irons are fully built, but not fully ranked with only one skulled.

    Bit of a false start for me, as the missus was using my normal PC so i jumped on our old one. It didn't sound great, grinding away with the HDD, but I decided to try a 100 with my cannons anyways. Part way through it locks up, Cannons dead. Eight hour repair. 900k points. Doesn't really matter though as I have to head off to work anyways so won't be back on and driving for over 10 hours. However, I won't be using that PC again. Although i did spend a couple minutes tuning it a bit better.

    I also quickly tried my Irons on auto in a 73 and came away with a 1h40m repair. Not too bad, but i think i'll probably just use my Cannons for the raid and actually drive. The irons might auto some tier 5 stuff in the background while i'm using the cannons to make sure i'm not wasting any repair time, but that's about it. 

    This could have been a challenging raid for me, as i'm working the first and final days, but also flying interstate on the third day. So i'm not going to have a huge amount of seat time. Luckily a) i dont need all that many points for all the prizes, and b) it looks incredibly easy to get a ton of points very fast for very little damage. I'll see tonight.

    ****update early day 2 of the raid *****

    So after my first false start I tried a 100 again on my main PC. Lots of lag / jumping around, and my fleet ended up half destroyed. However, now that the map was cached, no more lag when i went back in again.

    And it turned out as easy as expected. Now that we're on the second day there's a lot of talk about increased damage. I am finding the 100s pretty easy to do for anywhere between about zero and 24 minutes of repairs.

    I also realised I made a noob mistake - my HCann has CX3 rather than CL3. Although that doesnt really matter, as you don't get hit by rad damage - if I do make a mistake it would do a huge amount of damage so i decided to refit it.

    THis is my favourite vid as he's quite conservative with his pathing. I haven't actually listened to what he says as i dont have sound on, but the vid itself is great.



    Where am I at for no coins early on day 2? 55 million after approximately an hour of actual seat time. Fleets are fully repaired but i'm about to go out to lunch so i'll just leave them. Not really using my ironclads as they are junk compared to my cannoneers.
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    Unicorn Overlord
    Joined Oct 2011 Posts: 7,169
    edited 21 Feb 2017, 8:29PM
    So ... post rising shadows i ended up picking up all the prizes, and did a lot of prepping for alliance members.

    i now have my 5 pride shells more or less built, ready for the vxp weekend. I will start fully building them out 1 at a time, rather than partially building all 5, so that I can actually use 1 or 2 while the others sit in the background for bonuses.

    the only other thing i'm considering at the moment is to do a full d98u vanq for my guard. 

    i do need to finish my 4th ironclad, but i will wait and see if there are tokens in a tlc as it is my last one to build, and there's no point wasting shipyard time on it. That said, i virtually did not even use my ironclads in the raid, so its a real luxury build anyways.

    For next raid, assuming the new hull for the next raid series is offered, i will go into that the same as this raid - with a full bank of ship build tokens to get as many out prior to vxp as i can. and as many fully build for the raid as i can. I'm still wondering if it will be two ships - one as a tank and another for dps which is kind of how we run the current FM. Time will tell.

    ONe last thought re the raid. Some people did complain about the damage in 100s being turned up, and subsequently they stopped hitting them. Yes it might have been turned up. But i'd expect the next raid to be the same as that turned up version or worse. So anyone who stopped and did not practice to figure out the harder version was doing themselves a massive disservice. 
  • Sunan_Bonang
    Sunan_Bonang
    Minor Nuisance
    Joined Apr 2013 Posts: 136
    Nice guide bort. Keep up the good work.. :smile:
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    Unicorn Overlord
    Joined Oct 2011 Posts: 7,169
    Slight change in plan due to all these tokens they're throwing at us again and the new TLCs. I'm going to need to start scrapping again soon.

    I used my punisher tokens to refit one of my old puns to a better FM style tank.

    I also have been relying on vends for the FM, so i finally finished all the specials on my H.Cit using a token or two from this week's fm. That alone with a pun tank is good enough for the new campaign.

    I also built my first cit using the cit tokens as kinda of a backup in case i need it for the new raid. i'll get that a few ranks this weekend.

    Not sure if i'll do another spite. Might just keep the tokens as I already have a couple spites.

    P.S. you get no vxp for damage done in the 100s. So just suicide in them without doing any damage. then its free for the next person.

  • bort
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    Unicorn Overlord
    Joined Oct 2011 Posts: 7,169
    edited 9 Mar 2017, 11:23PM
    Slightly lost at the moment, with no super clear direction until we see the raid prizes.

    I half built 3 liberators with tokens, and then completed two of them with the last tokens. Those are helping me to get the Oppressor easy enough. I probably won't build oppressor - or at least use any tokens, until i see if any new weapons/specials come out.

    I'm still a little concerned about getting caught without enough PvE garrison style ships, so I built a blankish zelos, just in case we dont get a tank in the raid, so then i'd have two pun tanks and a zelos tank for the April raid. Might be a complete waste of build time, but better safe than sorry. Might even part build a tide tank. Either way, say we get a new tank and a new DPS remote targetting ship for the next raid series. You then need a number of tanks built for overnight/at work repairs, so its not going to hurt to a have a few spare tanks as its unlikely i'll be able to fully build 3 or 4 tanks and 4 dps ships before the next raid. (unless they release a combined tank/dps ship).

    I'm going into the raid with my 6 days of ship build tokens, as well as a spare 12 hour one from the last raid, which should give me a leg up to building any new hulls.

    I haven't really built out my prides yet, so maybe that will be this week's job. The iron maiden TLC has given me the chance to also fully build out my last ironclad, as well as refit my mauser one to milleniums. And should have enough vxp tokens to almost fully rank them all now.

    My other key action is to get rid of my crew collection so that i can actually roll for crews. Salt dogs is now kinda critical, given ranking has been made quite a bit more difficult. So, i bid you goodbye my collection.... For memory's sake:


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    Unicorn Overlord
    Joined Oct 2011 Posts: 7,169
    edited 13 Mar 2017, 4:02AM
    Now that tips and tricks are out, I have slightly more direction.

    First step is to refit my cannoneer armor to all speed armor - I want to have as much buffer as possible for 'timed surfacing'.

    I suspect i'll also keep a bunch of my crews that add speed (silent hunters?).  Still not sure which crews i'm going to delete though as my collection still has:

    7 DOS
    9 Demo squad
    12 Grease monkeys
    7 elite mercenaries
    11 BB
    1 crypt keeper
    2 salt dogs

    which takes me to 49 already before keeping anything else like my silent hunters .....
  • bort
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    Unicorn Overlord
    Joined Oct 2011 Posts: 7,169
    edited 19 Mar 2017, 3:44AM
    Utopia

    So we're into day 3 of the raid now. I hadn't had a lot of time to play in one sitting so its been lots of single targets or two. Day 1 was work, Day 2 family lunch. Today, 12k fun run, so my time for BP has been limited. Having said that, today is the first time i've had a solid hour to play though and my points are starting to rack up.

    I'm finding the 107s easier than the 100s as the central ballistic turrets in the 100s are a little trickier to keep at range whilst under pressure from the central turret. Here's a vid by Pain, which shows how to do both targets coin free.



    The most significant difference in my approach compared to the vids, is that I do not approach the rad turrets head on. I always go at them parallel, as i tend to lag a little. But by going parallel, your margin for error is increased dramatically. Even to 100% if you approach the turret on a pure parallel.

    Anyways, i'm on 235 million so far. My hourly rate seems somewhere around 45million per hour. I do make the odd mistake and my ships are reasonably damaged right now. But for the most part, because i've only done short sessions, my ships have been mostly repaired the whole time, so I haven't needed the full repair time overnight or at work.

    I auto'd a few tier 4s with my ironclads when i was at work, but won't bother doing that anymore as its a bit of a waste of time. They were all instant repair, but in reality a waste of time for me compared to driving my Cannoneers.

    Now, the question is what to build? I will be building some blankish icebreakers ready for vxp weekend. But going into Thursday i'll probably keep all the tokens possible (2x2day from last FM, 2x1day, 2x12hr, just in case the new 'skill' hull comes out on the same weekend as vxp weekend in a TLC.  If the skill hull doesnt come out, i'll simply build another icebreaker for vxp. I will also use the raid to pick up another citadel, so that would give me 2 cits and a H.Cit. I'll also pick up another zelos to build as a tank.
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