DUST 514 Tank Guide by Eris Ernaga
Taking your first steps
For any mercenary who wants to use tanks he will want to know which tank to use, there are only two tanks available at the moment Caldari and Gallente, each tank comes with different attributes and modules so knowing which vehicle you want to pick is the beginners first steps.
Caldari are natural shield tankers they get a large amount of natural shield recharge rate, Caldari tanks are designed for maximum CPU and high powered modules. The marauder version of their tanks use missile launchers but don’t let this stop you from using any other kind of turret like railguns or blasters. Caldari tanks when colliding with an object can take a large amount of shield damage thus it is always smart to use resistance amplifiers to down the damage taken from any collision. Caldari tanks have a number of free low slot modules which can be used to make their tanks more specialized, Gunnlogi the meta 1 tank comes with two low slots, the Sagaris the marauder version or the meta 6 version comes with three low slots. These low slots can be used for extra CPU, PG, damage, weapon coolants, speed, shied hit points, or shield recharge however because Caldari tanks have naturally low PG power grid modules will probably set the standard for most Caldari tanks.
Gallente tanks are armor based they start with a larger amount of armor then Caldari tanks do shield, however they get much less natural shield recharge rate and no armor recharge rate. Gallente armor plates will give much more armor then any Caldari shield extender, they will also get more armor repair from each cycle of a armor repairer module. Gallente tanks come with a naturally high amount of PG this will free them from power grid modules and allow them to specialize else where. Gallente marauder tanks give a natural damage increase for blasters and should be a focus for gallente tanks, blasters are great for infantry and close quarter fights however can be caught at a disadvantage when caught at a range. When colliding with an object Gallente tanks will not take as much damage making Gallente tanks slightly more safe when driving on the battlefield. Gallente use low slots for there armor modules thus will have additional high slot modules to help specialize their tanks, these modules can be used for scanners, damage controls, clone reanimation units, speed, weapon coolants, and faster turret rotation. The meta 1 Gallente tank or Madrugar comes with two free high slots, the marauder version or meta 6 version called the Surya comes with three additional high slots.
Time to choose
Now is the time to make your choice it is never wise to skill in to both tanks no matter what anyone says each tank represents the opposite attributes, modules, and skills of the other. This choice can be made purely by wanting to support your faction I as a Caldari choose Caldari tanks but in the end realized I would have to settle with less shield then the armor tanks were getting. From the above information you should be able to select and start on your tank, the first tanks that are not militia are the Gunnlogi and Madrugar, skills for them are below. If you wish to hold off and learn more about both tanks before choosing read into my next post it will give you a better idea of how both tanks operate.
Vehicle Command Level V
Caldari HAV Level I
Vehicle Command Level V
Gallente HAV Level I
Making the right skill choices
It is essential to skill correctly you can save hundreds of thousands of skill points by knowing what you are going to skill into before you start, remember to check and make sure you are leveling the correct skill, tanks have large skill point requirements miss clicks can be tragedy’s. There are skills you will need for both Gallente and Caldari tanks we will call these omni and skills you will need to prioritize for each race we will call these specific, you will also need turret skills which will also be omni. It is best to step away from drop suit skills and most equipment skills until you maximize your tank, prioritizing can provide a large advantage on the field and you will notice it in your higher meta modules. I do not expect you to level all of these skills to five on your first day but prioritizing and maximizing the skills posted below will help make your tank a powerful threat on the battlefield.
Circuitry Level V
Combat Engineering Level V
Vehicle Command Level V
Turret Operation Level V
Turret Upgrade Level III
Large Hybrid turret Operation Level V
Large Hybrid Turret Proficiency Level V
Small Hybrid Turret Operation Level V
Small Hybrid Turret Proficiency Level II
Hybrid turret skills cover both blasters and railguns after missile launchers were nerfed they are not worth skilling into.
Shield Adaption Level III
Shield Boost System Level V
Shield Control Level V
Shield Enhancement Level III
Caldari HAV Level III
Powergrid Upgrades Level IV
Armor Repair Systems Level V
Field Mechanics Level V
Armor Upgrades Level III
Armor Repair Systems Level III
Armor Adaption Level III
Gallente HAV Level III
Vehicle Maneuvering Level III
Marauder Level V
There might be other skills you will need for other modules however these skills will cover an advanced tank with some of the highest meta modules for Gallente and Caldari, it will also allow you to equip the best possible turrets large and small. Make sure to only up the skills required for your race specific tank you will find the list goes down once you do. Only skill marauder to level five if you are in a marauder tank with race specific turrets this will give a 4% damage increase for every level skilled in to, because missiles are pointless only Gallente will need the marauder skill as marauder Gallente tanks give a 4% increase to blasters. Caldari marauder skill gives a 4% boost to missiles turrets, missiles are however pointless and not worth skilling in to, leaving Caldari at a disadvantage.
Fitting your tank
Now that we know the right skills we will need to look into what modules we want to fit to our tank, every module cost money the higher meta ones being more expensive. Having the right dropsuits and weapons on the battle field cost money this can be said for tanks as well if you want to win you have to pay the price. The better your items the less chance there is of you dying but the more you will have to pay if you do die be prepared to grind in standard suits to afford your tanks. A low grade non militia tank will cost you around 400,000 to 600,000 isk while a higher grade tank will cost you anywhere between 700,000 to 1,000,000 isk. The marauder tanks however will cost you between 1,500,000 to 1,800,000 isk so it might take more then several games of grinding to come up with the money and many games in cheaper tanks before you will have the experience to effectively drive them with out loosing them. Before you start on your modules realize you wont be able to deploy to the battle field unless you have two smalls weapons and a large weapon this will allow your tank to fire how ever simply firing isn’t enough. At least four out five of your modules should be devoted to either armor or shield, this means four out of five of our Caldari high slot modules should be for shield and four out five of your Gallente low slot modules should be for armor, with that in mind lets look at some modules for both Gallente and Caldari.
To find Caldari modules we must first open up the market place tab then we should go to vehicle modules there should be a tab labeled “shield” with an arrow pointing to the right click on this tab. Here we can see resistance amplifiers, shield regenerators, shield boosters, shield transporters, shield hardeners, and shield extenders. First lets look at shield boosters these modules will repair our broken shields while on the battlefield, click on the shield boosters tab. Lets start by reading the description of the module this tells us what the module does, it should be located under the name of the module. Next is requirements if you see a skill book with a green check it means you have all the required skills for the module, if you have a skill book with a red x it means you still need to train skills to be able to equip this module. Under requirements it will also tell you how much CPU and PG you need to fit the module, this is a big step in figuring out which modules we have enough CPU and PG for. Lastly we can see how many of these modules we own and how much this module cost, continue scrolling through all of the shield modules, read each description and get an more in depth guide by clicking triangle on a module this will tell you everything you need to know about the specific item.
Go back to the vehicle module tab and go into armor this will show all the Gallente tank modules lets go into armor plates, armor plates increase the maximum strength of your vehicle’s armor but increase your tanks mass which lowers speed. Scroll down to the bottom of the list until you find “180mm Reinforced Polycrystalline Plates” click triangle on this module, hit R2 until you are in attributes, lets look at the attributes of this module. It is passive meaning it is always on, it is meta 3 higher then the others and will give our tank 3,128 extra hit points. By going into the fitting tab we can see that this is a low powered module and the CPU and PG requirements which are quite high. Go into prerequisites where we can now look at the required skills for this module green checks mean we have the required skill and a red x means we need more training, the skill that needs to be trained will be listed as well, if there are multiple skills they will all be listed. Lastly we can go into the description tab and look at a more in depth description of the module it also informs us that stacking more then one of this module will result in a penalty of how effective it is.
There are modules that can be used for both Gallente and Caldari speed modules can be used for both high and low powered slots, this can be said for quite a few module in which it will have high and low types that effect similar attributes.
To further understand this go back to vehicle modules and this time go into turret upgrades scroll through each tab for turret upgrades, through the fitting tab you will see that some of these modules are for low slots and some are for high slots, however a large amount of them effect the same thing like heat build up in your turrets. Now go to propulsion the same factor is applied one module works as a nitrous but is only for high a high powered slot another works by increasing a vehicles power plant output increasing its speed however it is only for a low powered slot.
I’d like to suggest when putting together a fit that you use a calculator this will let you determine the PG and CPU cost before you even equip the module, it will also allow you to calculate percents from skills or modules and add them to your tank’s statistics.
Strategy on the battlefield
When on the battlefield you need to use a level of awareness, owning a tank doesn’t just mean running head first into a battlefield chances are if you do you will die. When on the battlefield you need to memorize zones and areas where the enemy wont be able to follow you or hit you, this can be red zones near your base or behind mountains where forge guns and swarm launchers can’t target you. Drilling deep into the enemy might be successful at first but chances are you will loose a tank early in the match. Before we go deeper into the strategy of a tank pilot I would like to make a list of dangerous weapons that can easily pierce tanks armor or shield.
Anti Vehicle Weapons:
Heavy Attack vehicles
Flux Grenades (Caldari only)
These are the threat when you see one you better neutralize him or start running, never under any circumstances should you just sit there if you see a mercenary with one of these weapons. You should know where to retreat to and how to get out of a situation, forge gunners can hit a armored tank for over one thousand damage from a single shot alone so be prepared for a strategical retreat.
Now that we have covered the threats let’s get back to the strategy, camping your bases red line is one strategy it’s especially effective when using railguns, you sit back and shoot. If an enemy is deemed a threat you should retreat behind a mountain or structure into your allies red line where the enemy team can not open fire on you. For blasters where you need to be closer it’s good to not go into tight situations where you will have trouble backing up or getting out of a bad spot, check your exits and corners and use them.
Neutralizing anti vehicle mercenaries
There are many ways to stop someone with a forge gun from blowing up your tank, the first is to bring two passengers in your tank, remember three people in a tank also means three eyes and three guns. Bringing passengers along will guarantee more fire power and that closer targets will be put down faster, it guarantees a larger level of safety and strategy so use it on the field. Use mics, mics will allow the mercenaries on your team or in your tank to call out enemies in real time, mics help give a level of strategy and help build bonds where a keyboard simply couldn’t or operate quick enough on the battle field. Stick with your infantry a swarm launcher can not shoot an infantry soldier so stick by them don’t rush head first into situations you can’t handle or are going to need back up in, just because your in a tank doesn’t mean it’s smart to fight ten people at once. Lastly fit your turrets and modules right the more hits you can take the more hits you can continue to dish out before you need to retreat behind a wall or mountain, using the right turrets will allow you to neutralize a target before he neutralizes you.
Making the most war points
All to often a sniper with over thirty kills will not even have over two thousand war points, this is because he can not hack or destroy instillations he also can not destroy vehicles or incoming RDVs. Tanks however get half or more of their war points from destroying vehicles and instillations this will offer the tank pilot to make a lot of skill points, isk, and orbital bombardments per game. Instillations give one hundred war points if destroyed this is worth the same amount as two kills, in my tank I can two hit an instillation and quickly wrack up five hundred or more war points in a game alone from them. If using railguns with proper turrets and turret modules it is suggested to aim for RDVs which are the ships that deliver vehicles to the battlefield. You wills score one hundred and fifty points for destroying one which is the same worth as three kills, RDVs can be shot down in five or less railgun blast. Sinking multiple RDVs, instillations, enemy mercenaries, supply depots, and clone reanimation units will easily guarantee a game of over two thousand or three thousand war points.
Man is the only animal that deals in that atrocity of atrocities, War. He is the only one that gathers his brethren about him and goes forth in cold blood and calm pulse to exterminate his kind. He is the only animal that for sordid wages will march out and help to slaughter strangers of his own species who have done him no harm and with whom he has no quarrel . . . And in the intervals between campaigns he washes the blood off his hands and works for “the universal brotherhood of man” – with his mouth.
Caldari and Gallente tank fits
This is the tank I am working on currently I have the exact same modules but some of them are still at a lower meta, you will obviously need some level V skills to use this tank. The railguns are actually built for infantry with this tank I would recommend getting to a range then blowing away instillations, vehicles, and infantry.
Heavy Azeotropic Ward Shield Extender
Heavy Clarity Ward Shield Booster
‘Surge’ Shield Reinforcement
Ward Shield Amplifier
Active Heat Sink II
High Throughput Field Stabilizer II
Local Powergrid Expansion Unit
80GJ Scattered Blaster
20GJ Scattered Ion Cannon
20GJ Scattered Ion Cannon
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