The art of using fleets is the key to winning ship-to-ship engagements. Ships are built and refitted at ship Factory; fleets are repaired by and launched from the Fleet Bay. You can build as many ships as you want; ships not assigned to fleets remain in the reserves.
A fleet is a collection of up to six ships. The number of fleets that you can field is dependent on your Bridge level, from 2 at level I to 7 at level IV. In a similar manner, the tonnage limit of each fleet is dependent on your Fleet Bay Level; from 700 tons at Level I to 34200 at Level X.
The key to fleet management is specialization. Fleets can be configured for a number of different scenarios; Attack, Base Attack, Base Defence, Cargo and other layouts. Within a fleet, different positions in the formation have different functions: In its default (“Wedge”) formation, the ship in the #1 position is the one that generally engages the enemy first; it will need additional shielding and/or armor plating to deal with this. Since the AI-controlled enemy generally puts their best ships on the right flank, your left flank tends to take more of a pounding than the right – so beef up the shielding on the #2 and #4 ships to compensate. Other formations – such as Box, Line and Chicane – can be unlocked by collecting Blueprints, and require different tactics and techniques.
Each fleet can be given a name, which you can change by selecting the fleet name and typing in a new one. Only you will see this name, others will just see your username and the level of the fleet. This is useful, as it stops you from engaging an enemy with the wrong fleet (for instance, sending your cargo fleet into battle, which I have accidentally done more than once). Such names may range from the sublime (“Cargo”, “Carrier”, “Basing”) to the ridiculous (“Expendable Rancs”, “Gladius Knights”, “Noooooo”), as long as they are meaningful to you. Sadly, special characters are not allowed – alphanumeric only.
These Hints and tips are taken from my Game Guide, over a hundred pages of hints, tips, tricks and tactics that will help you get to grips with the finer points of the game, all for a paltry $2.99. However, if you use this link, you can get it for $1 off.