Fitting the Victorieux Luxury Yacht

Sometimes I enjoy firing up EVE Fitting Tool (EFT) to play with different ship configurations. Whenever I do this, I often discover new things about ship modules and how they interact, even if the ship is something as relatively unintimidating as the recently released Victorieux Luxury Yacht (VLY), which is essentially nothing more than a glorified shuttle.

A brief ode to EFT

I could easily write an entire post about the wonderfulness of EFT, and what a helpful learning tool it is for capsuleers. I could also describe how using it incorrectly has led me in my ignorance to some truly terribad fits, resulting in some unpleasant surprises when flying in New Eden. It's important for pilots to recognize that what appears to work theoretically in EFT can go woefully awry when applied in the harsh environment of virtual space.

All hail the glory of the EVE Fitting Tool!

All hail the glory of the EVE Fitting Tool!

For example, experimenting with fittings with the "All level V" skills option selected can give one a false sense of confidence. I'm guilty of doing exactly this in EFT, and then blithely buying some expensive modules in the market, only to discover that they don't actually fit with my character's less than perfect skills. I've learned to always verify my fittings with my characters' imported skill set first, before spending any ISK in the market.

Another potential pitfall, pointed out to me by Ripard Teg, is not turning off your microwarpdrive in the EFT display when looking at align and warp-out times. Keeping your MWD on in EFT, which is the default, makes these times longer. It's an easy thing to overlook.

Regardless, EFT is a fantastic tool for testing different kinds of ship fittings. If you aren't using it, you need to download it right away and review this tutorial, right now.

You'll thank me later, I promise.

But this post isn't really about the joys and sorrows of EFT warrioring. Rather, I'd simply like to demonstrate EFT's utility by sharing a few fitting ideas for the somewhat ostentatious VLY.

To the victors, the spoils

The VLY employs the same hull design as the Opux Luxury Yacht (OLY), which is typically flown by non-player characters in missions such as "Flame of Peace". It can also be seen in designated sites in New Eden, including Mamo's Backyard.  Only a couple of OLYs have ever been given to players, making it one of the rarest collector items in the game.

The VLY is the Intaki Syndicate version of the Gallente OLY, and it is definitely prettier. It features a nifty violet-and-chrome paint scheme, which makes me think of a custom motorcycle. Put wheels on the front and back, and some handlebars on the top, and it could easily be the pride of any futuristic biker.

The Victorieux Luxury Yacht - a prize awarded to every pilot who played EVE Online on the Tranquility server at the time of the Worlds Collide event at Fanfest 2015.

The VLY was given as a one-time only prize to all subscribers on the Tranquility server, as a result of the victory of the Camel Empire over the representatives of the Serenity (Chinese) server players, in the "Worlds Collide" event during Fanfest 2015. With thousands of these ships now in circulation, many now are asking themselves, "What do I do with this thing?"

About the VLY

Essentially, the VLY is a large shuttle, which can also fit a covert ops cloak like a blockade runner, and which is also warp bubble-immune like an interceptor. The VLY features a moderate amount of native shields, armor and structure, which should make it tough enough to withstand a smartbombing battleship long enough to warp away before exploding.

The VLY provides four low slots, but only one slot each for mid and high - and the high slot cannot fit any weapons. The CPU and powergrid isn't generous, with only 130 teraflops and 300 megawatts respectively, before applying skill or implant effects.

Whenever I start to play with EFT fittings, the first thing I do is look at the ship characteristics and bonuses. In general, the most effective fittings are those that capitalize on the inherent strengths and advantages of a particular hull. The VLY includes a hefty 50 percent bonus to warp speed and acceleration - this makes it perfect for speedy transport of pilots between gate jumps. The built-in immunity against warp bubbles of all types means we are not required to fit a microwarpdrive to "burn out" before warping away. Finally, the CPU-free fitting of a Covert Ops Cloaking Device makes this module the obvious (and practically the only) choice for our sole high slot - and that means our VLY will emphasize stealthy movement, ideal for passage through treacherous space.

So, in summary, we can see that the VLY is:

  • A hull that favors armor tanking, with most of its slots as lows
  • Built to be super-speedy in warp
  • Designed to be cloaky and slippery, especially in space where warp bubbles threaten

Armor-tanking the VLY

Though it does not possess any specific bonuses to armor tanking, the VLY's slot configuration, and the allocation of native hitpoints mostly to structure and armor (4,000 EHP each, with another 3,000 EHP for shields), makes this boat an obvious candidate for an armor-centric defensive fitting.

When I start playing with EFT fits, I like to first try to maximize a specific aspect,  stretching it to the limit without regard to cost. I do this while deliberately using an "All level V" skilled character selection, and applying super-high performance faction or deadspace modules, as well as implants (and also sometimes boosters, just for grins). It's fun to see how absurd one can push a specific aspect, while ignoring all other considerations. This provides a perspective of what the ship is capable of in extreme circumstances. After seeing how far I can take a particular attribute, I can then examine more reasonable fitting options - one that balances ISK expense with what I want that ship to accomplish.

In trying to maximize the VLY's effective hit points using armor tanking, I find I can achieve more than 95.6K EHP by using deadspace modules, Tech II rigs, a high-grade Slave set of pirate implants, plus a couple more implants for armor and structure enhancement. 

[Victorieux Luxury Yacht, VLY Absurd Armor Tank]
Damage Control II
800mm Reinforced Steel Plates II
Corpii A-Type Adaptive Nano Plating
Corpii A-Type Adaptive Nano Plating

10MN Afterburner II

Covert Ops Cloaking Device II

Medium Trimark Armor Pump II
Medium Trimark Armor Pump II
Medium Trimark Armor Pump II

This is an impressive tank for such a small craft, to be sure, though it comes with two very significant downsides. First, it's hideously expensive. Even worse, it is also relatively slow to warp, with a 6-second align time. A quick or lucky enemy could get within 2K meters in that time, decloak your VLY, and chip away your impressive tank until you died - or until they called some friends to join in the carnage. Still, it's interesting to see how much EHP one can get on the VLY, regardless.

The lone midslot on the VLY is a bit of a quandary, as it's not obvious what the optimum module would be. I opted for an afterburner, to make fitting easier. With a Tech II AB, this armor-fitted VLY still achieves more than 700 meters per second speed, which really isn't too bad. I've also seen other people fit a multispectral jammer or ECM burst module, for use as a last-ditch desperation option. Personally, I'd prefer to have the extra speed.

A more reasonable armor tank fit is one that doesn't break the bank, but still produces a decent level of EHP buffer. Without implants, the following fitting can provide over 54K EHP, at a much lower cost. It still has the same relatively slow align time, however, so I'd probably only fly this version of the VLY in high-sec space, if I flew it anywhere.

[Victorieux Luxury Yacht, VLY Armor Tank - Tech II]
Damage Control II
800mm Reinforced Steel Plates II
Energized Adaptive Nano Membrane II
Energized Adaptive Nano Membrane II

10MN Afterburner II

Covert Ops Cloaking Device II

Medium Trimark Armor Pump I
Medium Trimark Armor Pump I
Medium Trimark Armor Pump I

Just for fun, I also investigated a structure tank for the VLY. Only real men hull tank, or really stupid ones, as experienced EVE Online pilots know. In this case, I discovered that a maximized hull tank doesn't leave enough CPU to fit a useful mid-slot item. Still, this fitting, supported by a structure-enhancing implant, provides over 65K of EHP, and its align time is strangely improved to 4.2 seconds, so I would not dismiss it completely - though as we will see, there are better options available.

[Victorieux Luxury Yacht, VLY Silly Hull Tank]
Damage Control II
Reinforced Bulkheads II
Reinforced Bulkheads II
Reinforced Bulkheads II

[empty med slot]

Covert Ops Cloaking Device II

Medium Transverse Bulkhead II
Medium Transverse Bulkhead II
Medium Transverse Bulkhead II

Fitting for VLY agility

The problem with armor-tanking (or hull-tanking) the VLY is that it results in a less than optimum align time, which will give time to our foes to approach, decloak and tackle our fancy shuttle. If we strive for minimizing align and warp-out time first, we arrive at some useful options that are more likely to evade even the quickest of our enemies.

[Victorieux Luxury Yacht, VLY Absurd Agility]
Shadow Serpentis Inertial Stabilizers
Shadow Serpentis Inertial Stabilizers
Shadow Serpentis Inertial Stabilizers
Domination Nanofiber Structure

Corelum A-Type 10MN Microwarpdrive

Covert Ops Cloaking Device II

Medium Low Friction Nozzle Joints II
Medium Low Friction Nozzle Joints II
Medium Polycarbon Engine Housing II

This super-expensive faction fitting, when complemented with a Nomad pirate set and an evasive maneuvering enhancement implant, provides an eyebrow-raising 1.3-second align time at maximum skill levels. If you are striving for absolute highest agility in your VLY, this is the kind of fitting investment you need to make. Even without any implants, with this faction fitting, align time is just 2 seconds.

Not everyone will want to spend this much ISK on an elaborate shuttle, of course. So, perhaps a more tempered Tech II fitting may suffice, with only a little degradation in align time - in this case, to 2.1 seconds - and at far lower cost.

[Victorieux Luxury Yacht, VLY Agility - Tech II]
Inertial Stabilizers II
Inertial Stabilizers II
Nanofiber Internal Structure II
Nanofiber Internal Structure II

10MN Microwarpdrive II

Covert Ops Cloaking Device II

Medium Low Friction Nozzle Joints I
Medium Low Friction Nozzle Joints I
Medium Polycarbon Engine Housing I

The need for VLY speed

While a fitting emphasizing agility is attractive, the VLY's bonuses emphasize warp speed above all else. The 50 percent bonus to warp speed and acceleration means that the VLY can move through systems with absurd alacrity. If we emphasize warp speed and acceleration above all other factors, we get some very interesting results.

[Victorieux Luxury Yacht, VLY Absurd Slippery Speed Fit]
Inertial Stabilizers II
Warp Core Stabilizer I
Warp Core Stabilizer I
Warp Core Stabilizer I

Experimental 10MN Microwarpdrive I

Covert Ops Cloaking Device II

Medium Hyperspatial Velocity Optimizer II
Medium Hyperspatial Velocity Optimizer II
Medium Hyperspatial Velocity Optimizer II

This fit emphasizes tackler-eluding slipperiness with warp core stabilizers (fitted with apologies to Rixx Javix and all good low-sec pirates), and ridiculous warp speed with appropriate rigs and implants. With a full high-grade Ascendancy set and maximized skills, EFT calculates that this fitting will produce an astounding 16.9 AU per second in warp speed.

Even if we drop the specialized implants, we still get a very nice 10.4 AU per second in warp speed. Align and warp-out time is a respectable 3 seconds, and you get much faster movement between gates. And isn't that what you really want this fancy shuttle to do, anyway? Of all the fitting options explored here, this is the one I'd most likely settle on if I had to travel through potentially hostile space quickly.

Your mileage may vary

I have found that using EFT to maximize the inherent advantages of different ships, by observing the results of extreme fits that emphasize specific attributes first, and then balancing fittings against cost, usually produces optimal performance. My suggested fittings for the VLY are only one illustration of that process. If you have discovered an alternative VLY fitting that you have found to be useful, please share it in the comments.

Of course, depending on your preferred playing style and objectives, you may end up with much different kinds of fittings than my meager recommendations. In EVE Online, there are an abundance of variables in ship fitting, and there is very rarely one obvious answer. Many other pilots are better theory-crafters and fitting experts than me, but I still enjoy trying my hand at this form of EVE Online play from time to time. I encourage everyone to give "EFT warrioring" a try, if you haven't already. I guarantee that at the very least, it will teach you a few things about how to fly a little better in New Eden.

Fly safe! o7

NOTE: I corrected several fittings in this post, removing the effect of a MWD. Thanks to Ripard Teg for pointing out this fault.