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Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 1,273
# 17
03-31-2013, 11:49 PM
Originally Posted by renimalt View Post
Retrosrages, it sounds like you're having difficulty surviving the initial PSW stun. Surviving the stun and the strike that follows is all about getting the critical buffs that will keep you alive up before the stun hits, and then applying repairs/other countermeasures when you regain control. You'll need to pay attention and anticipate PSWs before they hit you, but once you do you'll easily counter most of these alpha strikes.

There are number of hard counters to the stun effect caused by PSW, and a number of soft counters that will help you survive the followup strike. Here are a couple:
  • Attack Pattern Omega: Hard counter. Directly prevents the stun effect from PSW. Use this before you get hit by PSW and you won't be locked out of your abilities. (Somebody correct me if I'm wrong.)
  • Auxiliary to Inertial Dampeners: Hard counter. Also directly counters the stun effect from PSW.
  • Tactical Team: Soft counter, but extremely effective. Use this before the PSW hits; you'll still be stunned, but their attacks won't instantly break your shields and cripple your hull.
  • Any abilities that grant shield/hull resist: Soft counters. Use them to strengthen your shields/hull and you'll be more likely to survive until you regain control of your abilities.
  • Evasive Maneuvers: Extremely soft counter, but occasionally effective. Remember, you can still pilot your ship while stunned; pop Evasive and then spin around them to throw off their firing arcs.

The main thing that I'd like to point out is that you have to pop these counters before you get hit by PSW. This means that you need to pay attention to what's going on around you. Here are some suggestions:
  • Turn up your audio; you can often hear the cloaked bops applying their buffs and preparing their alpha strike.
  • Watch for other debuffs being applied to you; some bops will use VM or tractor beams on you before they go through their PSW + alpha strike. When you see these debuffs, get your trigger finger ready on your counters.
  • Above all, stay alert. Even when they're starting from cloak, it usually takes a second (and produces a distinctive sound) to decloak. Use this time to apply your counters. You won't get to hit more than one or two, but any one of the above counters should be enough to save your bacon.

Just speaking from my experience, TT + EPtS is usually enough to keep you alive through the stun. Mini can attest to the many times I've foiled his alpha strikes -- not only on me, but also on any other target he might be trying to tackle.

The PSW + BO + THY + whatever bop strike is high-risk, high-reward. It will kill you if you're not prepared, but if you pay even the slightest amount of attention to what's going on and apply your counters correctly, you will survive these alpha strikes -- at which point you should make those silly klinks rue the day they decided to target you!
I'd like to emphasize the point made about keeping your ears open and staying alert. I'm one of those guys who likes to fly BoPs in Ker'rat and decloak-ambush players and try killing them in a single alpha, or at least maiming them and making them burn through skills. The easiest kills are always people who are drifting around not really paying attention, or are more focused on shooting the Borg NPCs than watching their backs.

When you pay attention, the attack buffs are actually quite audible, and most BoP pilots will activate them within 5-6 km because some don't last very long. That, and staying alert and keeping your fingers on your important first-reaction buffs is crucial. Reaction speed is everything, because an alphastrike can be over in 5 seconds and if it's a BoP they could already be on their way out by the time you react.

It may seem sneaky or cowardly, but this is basically one out of two viable uses for a BoP. The other is as an offensive-sci harasser, throwing around gravity wells, tractor beams, VMs, and whatnot. That's effectively what the BoP has been reduced to, because it can't compete with Federation escorts straight-up unless the escort is being piloted by an incompetent.