Of all the ship types in the game, the carrier is perhaps the biggest game-changer.
Once you have unlocked and built a carrier, the way you play the game changes dramatically. In fact it may be said that the biggest divide among players is between those who have carriers and those who do not – the Haves and Have-nots, if you like.
Nowhere is this more readily apparent than in events and Riots. Before I built my carrier, events were completed by auto-farming level-27 planetary fleets, with some manual sector-level farming of bigger fleets with Revelation Cruisers and Battleships. While these were usually insta-rep (instant-repair), this approach was brutally time-consuming and usually required 20-plus hours of farming over three or four days to get the top prize. With a carrier, however, the nature of these events changed; instead of hitting a fleet every minute or so for 1000 loot apiece all the live-long day, it was now possible to hit a few 50, 55 or even 60 VSec fleets for 100,000 loot, with 1-2 hours of repairs before the next round of attacks. This means that while the overall earning rate did not change, it became far less time-consuming and hence easier.
The carrier is the longest-ranged ship in the game, but that enormous reach comes at a price – Carriers are relatively fragile and can be taken out easily by a determined opponent. Fortunately the enemy AI is easy to fool – computer-controlled opponents always home in on the closest ship, and so a decoy ship can be used to draw fast-moving opponents away from the carrier. Decoys can also be used to draw enemy ships away so that the carrier is not overwhelmed by multiple enemies at once.
Slower-moving enemies such as Battleships can be fooled relatively easily – use a decoy to turn enemy Battleships so that they are heading straight at the carrier, This will allow the carriers squadrons to approach the battleship through its forward blind spot without being hit by the Battleship’s weapons.
- Keep your carrier moving! A stopped carrier is a dead carrier
- When pursued by multiple enemies, angle your carrier off to one side so it engages opponents one at a time.
- When faced with multiple targets, select a priority target (long-press on mobile, right-click on PC) so all carrier squadrons will engage that target and kill it as fast as possible. Remember that a near-dead ship does as much damage as a fresh one, so the faster you kill it the better.
- A carrier costs about the same time to repair as a High-end battleship (Fury/Dread/Zeal/Vigilante), so it is actually a good idea to sacrifice a carrier to save a bunch of Battleships.
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