Last week a healthy discussion had been generated in the EVE-O forums regarding the upcoming Marauder changes for the Rubicon Expansion, today CCP Ytterbium posted this interesting Q&A regarding the frequently asked questions on this topic, I would recommend you to take a look.
Dev Post: Q&A on the Marauder’s Changes…
Alright, as promised, we are having a small iteration on the hulls themselves:
Capacitor has been decreased from 8000 to 7500 on the Paladin.
Drone bay has been restored to 75m3 on the Paladin and Golem, 125m3 on the Kronos and 75m3 on the Vargur.
Max Velocity has been increased to 100m/s on the Paladin and Golem, 105 on the Kronos and 110 on the Vargur.
Mass has been reduced to 92,245,000 kg on the Paladin, 94,335,000 kg on the Golem, 93,480,000 kg on the Kronos and 96,520,000 kg on the Vargur.
Shield HP has been increased from 6300 to 6900 on the Paladin, 8000 to 8800 on the Golem, 6600 to 7300 on the Kronos, 7500 to 8300 on the Vargur.
Armor HP has been increased from 8000 to 8800 on the Paladin, 6100 to 6700 on the Golem, 7200 to 7900 on the Kronos, 6600 to 7300 on the Vargur.
Hull HP has been increased from 7700 to 8500 on the Paladin, 7000 to 7700 on the Golem, 8600 to 9500 on the Kronos, 6300 to 6900 on the Vargur.
Why buffing those hulls?
As mentioned here and based on your feedback, we realized the hulls have been overnerfed in iteration 1 next to the benefits given by Bastion.
Why restoring their drone bay to their original values, but keeping the nerfs to the bandwidth?
Mainly because those hulls are not supposed to use large drones, especially sentries in combat. They are supposed to use their main turrets / launchers, combined with Bastion mode to deliver damage, and use MJD to move around the battlefield. On those vessels, drones are limited to a support role, indicated by the low bandwidth. However, we have nothing against keeping a bit of flexibility by having high drone bays to allow replacement waves.
Why removing the web bonuses?
As we realized when internally playtesting iteration 2, web bonuses don’t combine that well with hulls using MJDs to move around or increased projection in Bastion. When we gave them web bonuses we had to nerf them from 10% to 7.5% per level not to overstep on ships like the Vindicator, which by itself was a sign that we were trying to take over a role already fulfilled by the Pirate Battleships. Marauders are not supposed to fill the same niche than their Pirate counterpart, which led us to remove those web bonuses and revert back to iteration 1. Trying to hit orbiting NPC frigates at close range with those hulls is not a good idea either, just use your MJD and snipe them before they can come back in range. If you wish to hit close range targets, the Vindicator is much better for that purpose, as it is tailored for Blasters.
Why having a slighly nerfed max velocity next their tech I counterparts?
Those hulls are the very epitome of tanking, through the Bastion module. For balance purposes, they have to pay for that somehow. Max velocity nerf is a good way to compensate, especially when considering the fact they have MJDs at their disposal to hop around the battlefield. However, the first speed nerf was a bit harsh, which is why we are mitigating it by increasing their max velocity a bit next to iteration 1.
Why do those hulls have lower mass next to their tech I counterparts?
Having less mass help with max MWD velocity and align time. The first one partially helps to compensate the Max Velocity nerf (they’re not as mobile than tech I, we estimate their top speed to be 10% slower with MWDs), the second one helps to make those hulls less vulnerable when coming out of bastion mode to align and warp out. Aligning is especially important for MJDs, and we estimated it was a good aspect to preserve.
Why buffing the EHP?
For being the epitome of tanking, they shouldn’t have reduced EHP next to their tech I, Navy or Pirate counterpart. We wanted to avoid giving them full Tech II resists outside Basion Mode to avoid broad use in RR fleets, but we still felt the need to give them some buffer to help survivability as a whole. In practice, that means the Marauders now have 39-41k raw EHP, which compares favorably next to Navy Battleships (35-41k) or Pirate Battleships (34-41k).
Why nerfing the capacitor on the Paladin?
Combined with the Capacitor bonus it gets it was just too high before. It’s not much of a nerf however, but it helps with the general balance of those hulls.
Why didn’t you buff the fittings?
We estimate the CPU / PWG on them to be adequate. We are aware of some tight fittings, but we don’t want those hulls to be able to easily fit a full rack of top tier turrets / launchers with Energy Neutralizers plus a full tank, as it would be quite over the top.
Why not moving a high-slot to med or low?
We feel like the extra high-slot to be needed to compensate for the use of the Bastion module – adding an extra med or low slot could make those hulls quite too much powerful in combat situations.
Why not adding damage to the Bastion mode?
Those hulls are not supposed to be outdamaging competition, as this would be favoring the power-creep. They are supposed to fulfill a different role / niche through their high tanks, stable weapon platforms (EW immunity, increase damage projection) and MJDs. It’s all about trade-offs; if you wish more damaging hulls, then look for Pirate Battleships / Navy Battleships for that particular purpose, knowing full well you will pay for it in other areas.
Why keeping the damage projection in Bastion stacking penalized?
We want to keep the projection in check. A Paladin with Scorch can already reach insane ranges (to the point where Beams are quite redundant on it), so we are not willing to remove the stacking penalty for now. Or at least not until we are seeing some hard use numbers on TQ first.
What’s the point of keeping tractor bonuses with the new deployable structure?
The new structure might not have the same attributes than the Marauders – it will only tractor one item at a time and while the tractor range will be longer than the Marauders, it won’t be as fast (no tractor beam velocity bonus). I’ll let CCP Fozzie explain the details.
Why would I want to use Marauders in Incursions now that the web bonus is gone?
There are other advantages to Marauders – internal play tests have shown us than kitting through the MJD bonus is very effective, as NPC warp scramblers don’t stop you from using it. Plus their tank is good enough not to require Logistic support. Bottom line is, we are not willing to leave a web bonus on Marauders to cater to ultra-specialized Incursion fittings when that conflicts with our design goals and their role as a whole. Especially when alternative tactics exist that make them still very effective in Incursions.