Freighter Pilot Implants

DerMuffin mentioned his displeasure at his inability to pimp his freighter to go faster, to which I replied, “use implants”.

This spurred me to investigate which implants are actually good for freighter pilots.

Help! Im being bumped by a gigantic slug!

There are three different play styles for freighter pilots: those who AFK autopilot around the place, those who do manual piloting, and those who use jump freighters.  The autopilot drops a ship 15km from each gate, meaning that a maxed-out Obelisk pilot still takes about 150 seconds to fly to the gate and warp. Manually-piloted freighters don’t need to coast 15km to each gate, but do need to align before they warp. This can be nail-bitingly slow if you’ve just undocked from a station in Thakala after cynoing in, and are trying to warp to the safety of high-sec space. Jump freighters, on the other hand, don’t have to worry about aligning while they cyno about, but may have to slum it when flying in high-sec space.

However, as it eventuates, the limited slot selection that CCP has provided for implants suitable for freighter pilots means they will probably all end up with the same types of implants.

To this end, the recommended series of implants are:

  • Slot 6: ‘Rogue’ Navigation NN-6xx (1% to 6% Max Velocity) or
    Slot 6: ‘Rogue’ Warp Drive Speed WS-6xx (5% to 18% Warp Speed)
  • Slot 7: ‘Rogue’ Evasive Maneuvering EM-7xx (1% to 6% Agility)
  • Slot 8: ‘Noble’ Mechanic MC-8xx (1% to 6% Hull Hit Points)
  • Slot 9: ‘Gnome’ Shield Operation SO-9xx (1% to6% Shield Recharge Rate)
  • Slot 10: ‘Noble’ Hull Upgrades 10xx (1% to6% Armor Hit Points) or
    Slot 10: Skirmish Warfare Mindlink (15% Agility as fleet booster)

Why those?

Frankly, because freighters can’t fit modules that are affected by any other implants. However, breaking it down:

Slot 6

CCP nerfed a lot of navigation implants by moving them all to slot 6 where they become mutually exclusive choices. From a freighter point of view, the only choices are max velocity or warp speed. A 6% max speed implant would shave at most 8.9 seconds from a 12.5km autopilot trek (which nominally takes 150 seconds to traverse). Note that the faster your freighter goes, the less time you’ll save with the implant.

In contrast, a 29AU warp at 0.7AU/s takes 41.5 seconds, or 35.1 seconds with maxed HY implant. That’s only 6.4 seconds.  Why 29AU? It appears to be the average distance between two highsec stargates. So, the warp speed implant won’t save you as much time than the velocity implant, but that time is saved regardless of whether you’re autopiloting or not. Note that this calculation doesn’t take into account the time spent getting up and spooling down from max warp speed. Estimating that at 7 seconds, that means a normal warp is 48.5 seconds, and a 18% warp speed implant would shave 8.73 seconds from that.

In summary: unless your normal route has short warps and you autopilot it, then choose the warp speed implant.

Slot 7

Agility is the biggest drawback to freighters. They need agility to accelerate to warp speed, so an implant can shave about 2 seconds from a 36 second align time, and save a bit of autopilot time as well, since you’ll get to top speed faster.

Slot 8

The shields and armour on a freighter is only a small fraction of the amount of hull hit points it has, so  a hull implant will make a real difference in effective hit points.

Slot 9

This slot doesn’t have much of a choice for non-combat pilots, so a shield recharge implant is the most relevant. Since your shields are

  • thin
  • not going to recharge much while being ganked

then it is OK if you don’t even bother with implants in this slot.

Slot 10

Slot 10 has the Warfare Mindlinks, which are incredibly awesome but only if you have a fleet member in system so the bonuses turn on. If this is realistic, then a skirmish warfare mindlink will cut 5.4 seconds from your align time. However, a friendly web will cut a lot more off your align time so it might be a bit pointless.

If that doesn’t appeal, then adding a bit of armour is a fine alternative.

Example Cheap Selection

is a flat 3% implant set for about 40 million ISK and will save you about 13 seconds per system while on autopilot.

What about implant sets?

Slots 1-6 can also accept implant sets, which individually provide small bonuses, but also improve geometrically as you add more implants of the same type.

The two relevant implant sets are

  • Nomad set, which provides a bonus to agility, and
  • Ascendency set, which provides a bonus to warp speed

Generally, the Ascendency set is slightly better, because a webbing alt can help with agility issues but unless you’re strictly in-system, you’ll always need to warp a long distance. Both sets are pretty expensive, so I can’t really recommend them for general use.


11 Responses to “Freighter Pilot Implants”

  1. April 21, 2011 at 7:08 am

    Just saw the pingback: thanks for the detailed explanation.

    Lets look into the hauling clone:

    Slot 6: Rogue HY-1 – check (freshly acquired)
    Slot 7: Rogue AY-1 – check (freshly acquired)
    Slot 8: Noble ZET300 – check (was already there)
    Slot 9: Gnome KYA1000 – check (was already there)
    Slot 10: Highwall HX… – fail (this was my old mining clone)

    It does not do magic but I swear it feels faster 😉

    BTW: How do you come to “Nyrond”? Not all people called Sören have a last name of Nyrond 😉

  2. April 21, 2011 at 12:14 pm

    I got a Trader that owns a freighter, so good info to know on how to wire up for faster aligning.

  3. May 3, 2011 at 4:46 pm

    As alluded to in your post, the ‘Rogue’ CY-1 is actually a very poor choice for Freighter pilots. As getting into warp requires 75% max velocity, it will increase the amount of time necessary for every align. It will take you longer to get away from stations and gates as you are unable to increase your thrust to coincide with your increased velocity.

    So in the end, it would be better to say, “Especially” if your normal route has short warps…

  4. 7 Bob
    April 3, 2013 at 2:29 pm

    In the list of implants you mentions the warp speed implant but you use the WD-6xx designator. The warp speed implant is the WS-6xx implant series. The WD-6 series is a capacitor reduction implant which does nothing for a freighter

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