Elite Dangerous Fighting Thargoid Threat Guide

by 4sonicride

Table of Contents:

  • What is the “Thargoid Threat”
  • Ship Builds
  • AX Conflict Zones and Galnet
  • Advanced Defense from Eagle Eye

Each Section is categorized for newer players and cheaper tactics up to advanced tips and tricks and cheesy methods. Enjoy

What is the “Thargoid Threat”

This image will tell you a great deal. The bubble is being slowly, but surely, overran and destroyed by Thargoids, a hive-mind level of sentience that has taken it upon itself to encroach on Humanity’s lives and well being.

Each station shown in that image is in one of two states:

  • Damaged and on fire: was recently just attacked by thargoids. Internally it has a swirling mass of slag and station parts that are just as dangerous as the fires inside. Setting foot into the station’s internal atmosphere is akin to fuel scooping on a Supergiant, and the only thing you can do is carry evacuees that didn’t die from the initial onslaught to safety on a nearby megaship.
  • Reparing: These stations have gone through the fire and flames (heh) and are now in the midst of repairs. Unfortunately, it takes a massive amount of commodities to even come close to repairing the station’s basic needs. So much so that the stations are being damaged much faster than we can cope with, and the bubble that was once safe is now slowly crumbling into a mass of slag.

This guide is here to help you, the courageous CMDR, overcome this threat, and help Humanity stave off the threat. Even just stopping the eagle eye targets would be a massive help, and here’s how you can do it.

Ship Builds

Want to find a station near you that sells these builds? Click this little button at the top right.

Ship builds are determined on 2 key factors.

  • Hull Tanking – Xeno’s phase shields, having a strong hull means the difference between a trip to the bonds office and a trip to the rebuy screen.
  • Speed – staying moving and being nimble is a great way to confuse the thargoids and stay on their good side.

Top Teirs of AX builds are very much based on play style. If you like doing a fuck ton of damage, there is a build for you. If you want to remain nimble and quiet without drawing much attention, that’s there too. But there are a few essential modules that every ship should have

  • Xeno Scanner : allows you to visualize the thargoid threat with your ships scanners. Also required if you want to target interceptor hearts or know how much health your enemy has.
  • Shutdown Field Neutralizer : Possibly the most terrifying weapon in the AX arsenal, being shutdown is a quick way to die by a swarm.
  • Decontamination Limpit (and subsequent limpits in cargo) : scouts and interceptors alike really like to throw corrosive missiles at you. You can remove the corrosive material by overheating yourself to a ridiculous amount (damaging yourself internally), or using a decon limpit to safely remove it.

If you want to build your own ships, please keep these 3 required modules in mind, as well as hull tanking and speed. You can make a ship cheaper by removing the hull upgrades, but be warned that it will cost you surviveability.

Note that switching out Shield Boosters for chaff and heatsinks is a very viable option as well. Thargoids do in fact respond to silent running and heat sinks if you keep moving, and having a quiet, silent build works really well.

Ships for New Players, or those on a budget with no access to engineering or tech unlocks.

*If you want to find where to find only scouts or interceptors, go down to the zone sections

  • Diamondback AX : 22.5mill, Slightly harder than the vulture, but at the cost of weaponry, this is about as cheap as you can safely go for killing scouts. Strongly advised to stick to scouts.
  • Vulture AX : 28.5mill, A soft but fast vulture build that can easily slice through Scouts without an issue. Strongly advised to stick to Scouts only.
  • Keelback AX : 24.7mill, Hardest of the three cheap builds, but lacks the AX firepower of the previous 2. Much more suited to supporting other AX craft rather than trying to solo a scout, try and stay close to other AX craft or risk getting your Keelback turned into a pile of slag. Strongly advised to stick to scouts only

These are very cheap builds, and are for people wanting to experience the thargoid threat without much hardcore engineering or tech unlocks. These builds are weak in almost every stance, and are heavily suited to picking off the kills of other AX ships.

More Expensive Builds that require weaponry unlocks. (Engineering not required, but advised)

*These builds require tech unlocks, more specifically you will need guardian weaponry. These are able to easily take on interceptors as well. Different types of weaponry include:

Guardian Gauss : Your rail-gun like shot that is a size 2 maximum, but can take down cyclops hearts in a few shots.

Guardian Plasma : A charge-and-release type weapon that can fit into size 3 slots, but requires a significant amount of aiming and leading your targets.

Guardian Shard : A fragmentation weapon that is deadly at close range. An AX anaconda with 4 large Shard Cannons (my favorite) can kill a cyclops without having to remove the last heart, (ie. taking down a cyclops at 40% with one run)

Remote Release Flak : Hold-until-close type weaponry that is used in killing an AX swarm. Required to kill the swarm.

  • Anwido’s AX FAS: 79.4mill, a fast, cheap, and hearty hull tank that is quite able to take down interceptors. Switching out the shield boosters for heat sinks and chaff can give you a cold killer. This build requires a lot of aim however, and is suited for experienced players. It is best when used at a distance, firing vollies into the hearts while keeping a soft distance from the threat. Best used with engineering, but can be a fun challenge without
  • FGS AX : 119.7mill, this ship is heavy, slow, but brutal. Housing 4 shard cannons and ~3k hull, you are meant to take the brunt of damage while dishing it right back out. This ship is a hard trade off between speed and power, but this also means one wrong move and you’ll be dead in the water with no way out.
  • Anwido’s Krait II AX, 168mill, this is another fast boi that relies on quiet movement and sneaky heat sinks. Following the same style as the first build, being a distance fighter brings it to an advantage.

Hefty Chonks for those that want to take down entire AX Zones

These ships require guardian modules as well as weapons. Engineering is a *requirement** as you will not survive long enough without it.

[Guardian Hull Booster] : A guardian hull module that increases your caustic resistance massively with hull at the cost of increased power. Engineering a G5 Powerplant to max is basically required.

  • Anaconda AX, “Arburich’s Thargoid Strike Craft” 520mill. This is the big one, the best you can get with the top of the top. With a ridiculous 6.1k Hull Absolute and a 9k Caustic Hitpoint tank, this ship is the ultimate in survive ability and damage. It is the only ship (besides the type 10) that can hold 4 Large AX / Guardian weapons. Slapping 4 Shard cannons on this bad boy means you can take down a cyclops from 40% without killing the last heart. It sacrifices it’s movement speed for pure, unrelenting force, and can easily take down an entire AX zone without hesitation.
  • Type 10 AX “Big Chungus”, 505mill. This is a very slow ship. When I say slow, I mean slow. Big warning. This ship has slighty more hull than the Anaconda, but it scarifies a large amount of speed an maneuverability for said hull. This ship can also handle 4 Shard Cannons, and can take the brunt of damage from a number of enemies. Getting caught with your pants down in this ship means certain death. You have to highwake, lowaking will mean death.

That’s it. There are over 30+ ships in elite dangerous to choose from. These are by no means perfect builds, but if you want to make one yourself just take a look at the suggested builds above and get a good sense of what is required or suggested.

Now onto the fun part

AX Conflict Zones and Galnet

Fighting in an AX conflict zone is easy. It’s when the interceptors come out that you’ll have a bad time if you don’t read this first.

Every week, if an Eagle Eye target (go down one more section for more info for Eagle eye) is not defended, the system will turn to “incursion” with the target station burning in the same system. Galnet reports on these systems in real time and is a key factor in finding where to go and what to defend. /u/burtonsimmons Makes an excellent Weekly Guide that details what was attacked, where is being attacked next, and what is currently on fire.

Example of Galnet and what you should be looking at.

Get to the point you Defunct Toaster Oven, How do we Charge into the AX Zones with our heads held High and Kill this threat?

  • Step 1: Find a system via galnet with a thargoid Presence at marginal or higher. The list of states goes as:Massive Thargoid PresenceSignificant Thargoid PresenceModerate Thargoid PresenceMarginal Thargoid PresenceNo Thargoid Presence
  • Step 2: Locate the AX Zone in said system. Then Locate the Megaship near said AX zone or burning station to serve as a base of repair and bond runs.
  • Step 3: Get some limpits
  • Step 4: Enter the conflict zone.

People who only want to kill scouts, Start Here

  • You will spawn into the zone, scouts will start spawning around you as well as AX ships.
  • Make sure you choose to “help out” (like a conflict zone) against the thargoid threat. No, you cannot choose to side with the Thargoids.
  • Start Murdering the Scouts. There are Scouts, Berserkers, and Regneration scouts. Focusing on the Berserkers and Regen scouts are a good plan, as berserkers can make regular scouts launch caustic missiles (ew), and regeneration scouts can heal other scouts.
  • Once you clear the waves, you’ll have two opportunities to leave. This is very important for those not wanting to fight interceptors. The first sign is that you will receive a bond of 100,000 credits. This means the scout wave is done and the interceptors are next. Usually this is followed with a fellow AX ship telling you that interceptors are incoming, and you should be ready.

For those that want to kill interceptors, continue on. Those that only can take on scouts, it is time for you to GTFO of the zone or face death fairly soon.

  • Ready the shutdown field neutralizer. Two interceptors will now spawn in, ranging anything from a Cyclops, to a basalisk, and (rarley) a medusa class interceptor. Once they spawn in they will shutdown pulse the area. **The more AX ships you save inside this pulse neutralizer, the more they can help you against interceptors.
  • Check the sizes of the swarm. If the swarm size is larger than 32, do not aggro. Check the second Interceptor and if neither have a swarm of 32, it is suggested you leave and turn in what you have.
  • Note: It is relatively useless to attempt to kill more than a cyclops (32 swarm) inside these zones. It is too much ammo wasted and worth the extra effort. If you are feeling lucky or want to have some fun, by all means try to, but you will more than likely not be able to clear the zone without a rearm!
  • Once you have an Interceptor of swarm size 32, start attacking. Take it down however you normally do. There are lots of guides on how to kill interceptors, but the basis is : Scan (xeno scanner) -> Exert Heart -> Kill Heart -> run away a little, -> Step two Till no hearts -> Killing blow.The 1st heart kill starts the “lightning attack”, which can be avoided by boosting past the interceptor at high speed in the opposite direction.The Second Heart kill will release caustic missiles. Suggest you run in the opposite direction until said missiles die.The Third Heart will release another set of missles and a shutdown pulse. The Pulse is always random and un-notified, be careful because it almost always catches you by surprise.After that you should be able to kill it fairly easily with no hardships.
  • Once you kill one interceptor, a 3rd interceptor will normally spawn in, along with a new wave of scouts. This is also accompanied by another Shutdown Pulse. The scouts can (and usually do) aggro to you instantly, so try and drag them through the AX ships before you engage the second interceptor.
  • After you kill the second interceptor, sometimes more AX ships will spawn in to give a helping hand. Kill the third interceptor (and the remaining scouts) to complete the zone!!

Once you beat the zone, something weird happens. You- [Redacted] kshh signal lost

  • Once you are finished with what you want to do in the zone, make sure to turn in the combat bonds at the megaship to help decrease that presence. After a few trips, check the Galnet Article to see if you’ve decreased the threat level any. I’ve been able to decrease a massive threat -> no threat in about 2 days of non-stop interceptor killings. It’s hard work but very rewarding.

Advanced Defense from Eagle Eye

Once again I advise you check out Burton Simmons Amazing guide that details this far greater than I can.

The Eagle Eye installations are kind of hidden and are not easily accessible to find where the new threats are unless you know how to or are in the area. If you wish to help with the defence of systems pre-incursion, Burton’s posts are where to look.

  • Find a system being targeted by eagle eye, either by visiting Burton’s guide or visiting the installations yourself.
  • Find Non-Human Signal Sources in said systems and kill the thargoids inside.
  • For those only wanting to kill scouts, stick to Threat 4 sources. Threat 5 and above have a chance to spawn interceptors, threat 7 will almost always spawn one with a lot of scouts.
  • Turn in bonds to a local station.

Sadly there isn’t a way to tell if what you are doing is helping or not like the galnet AX zones do, so you just have to fight and hope that you are helping enough to stave off an attack in the next week.

That’s it, that’s all I got.

This guide was brought to you by Alchemy Den, thanks to everyone who was able to help me out with some fantastic advice. Thanks to Anwido from Simbad as well for giving me a few builds to use.

Now go save humanity!

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