Part 11: Fighter Details (Olesh)
Ow. how effective do you find Fighter Garrisons? I tended to not use them a ton as they replaced fighters slowly and didn't have 'complete' wings each invasion.
Suppose you can always try and go for the 'snipe a planet that was just conquered' thing as well if you can get there before it can be reinforced or if a defense fleet isn't left.
Would suggest if you think that Starbases are gonna be your core defense force to get Class 1 shields. Cheap, will automatically get put on all your defense outposts. Not super important if you're going for frigate swarm with missiles to upgrade on them, mind.
Let's talk about fighters - the overall discussion here applies to both Fighter Garrisons and the Fighter Bays that can be put on ships.
The basic type of "fighter" is launched by Fighter Bays and (initially) by Fighter Garrisons are called interceptors. Interceptors work similarly to missiles - once launched at a target, they can't be controlled and continue to operate automatically.
- Always carry one of your best weapons that can be made point defense. Interceptors carry a NORMAL beam, but will only be equipped with the best one that has a PD version.
- Always uses your best targeting computer
- Always fires at 0 range
- Always shoots the side of the target where shields are weakest
- Each interceptor has 3 + (armor multiplier) in structure, so interceptors have between 4 and 13 structure points
- Combat speed of 8 + (2x drive speed), ranging between 12 and 22.
- Can make 4 shots before needing to return and recharge
Fighter bays launch 4 interceptors per bay. Fighter Garrisons launch 10 interceptors (in two groups of 5).
How effective Interceptors are depends largely on your available beam research - since they don't benefit from beam miniaturization, they're decent candidates if you've been stealing/trading for your beam technology upgrades. Since they always fire at range 0, interceptors rarely miss and stay out for multiple turns to do damage repeatedly. However, they do tend to get cleared out by drive explosions, making them difficult to rely on heavily. Fighter Garrisons will eventually replenish their interceptors, but I can't remember off the top of my head if Fighter Bays do the same. Interceptors can be sent out against any targets - ships, missiles, other enemy fighters, you name it.
Two other types of fighters exist - Bombers and Heavy Fighters, but these are later technologies and fighters in general fall off in effectiveness in the late game as beams begin to reliably out-damage their structure and targeting computers improve to the point where they get shot down reliably.