Fighters are small, maneuverable but relatively slow craft which provide a variety of roles to your fleet in Avorion. They can be purchased at Equipment Docks and Fighter Factories, or manufactured by the player.
Designing Custom Fighters
The player is able to design custom fighters at any Fighter Factory aligned "good" or better. To do so, the player must possess a turret in their inventory and sometimes significant amount of credits., depending on the rarity and material of the turret used. The material of the turret determines the material required to manufacture the fighter, and influences it's stats since the material influences the stats of the turret itself. Any special status of the turret like "Burst Fire" or "Seeking" will be transferred to the fighter, and the damage stats of the turret will determine the damage stats of the fighter, which will be fractional. The player must also select a ship design to use for the fighter (which must be comprised of 200 blocks or fewer), and only smaller ships can be used, based on block count. The stats of the ship you select for the fighter do not matter: this decision is merely cosmetic.
Custom fighter damage calculation: 0.3 * turret damage / number of slots.
Custom fighter fire rate is normally equal to the fire rate of the turret. If the turret was overheating, then the fighter will not overheat, but fire rate is lowered accordingly instead. It is unknown whether the same applies to battery charge turrets (probably not, needs testing).
- Crew Shuttles are used for boarding stations. You need to have boarders on board your vessel (not pilots!) for this to work.
- Cargo Shuttles are used by stations only, to transfer goods from one station to another in the same sector.
The following four stats are determined upon building the fighter in a fighter factory. When building it, you can increase these stats for points, but doing so will make the fighter more expensive.
- Speed (in m/s)
- Maneuverability is how fast it can turn. It does not decrease the chance of the fighter being hit.
- Size translates to the volume of hangar blocks that your ship will need to fit your fighters. Spending more points creates a smaller fighter. It does not decrease the chance of the fighter being hit.
- Durability is like Hull HP on ships.
Initial stats and the amount of durability you get per point spent depends on the material of turret from which you are creating the fighter. In case of crew/cargo shuttles, it depends on the material the fighter design is made of. In order to get best stats on those, convert your favourite design to all avorion (you can use a creative galaxy to do it if you do not have the resources).
Fighters require trained pilots to function, and normal crew members cannot be assigned to this task. As pilots fly more missions for you, their skill increases. This skill increase helps the fighter to dodge projectiles fired at it: the first few shots will always dodge at 100% and then dodging will become less and less likely but with bonuses added for better pilot skill. Using skilled pilots for major engagements can help to keep your fighters alive longer and help them to be more effective, but requires additional crew micromanagement as you will need to transfer pilots between ships to get an optimal distribution.
By using the XSTN-VI system upgrade, the requirements for pilots can be removed. The skill level of these AI pilots is effectively zero; fighters operated by these AI pilots appear to either be very bad at dodging enemy fire or don't bother attempting to dodge. Proceed with caution if you plan to use AI pilots in combat fighters.
Fighter blueprints can be created by drag-and-drop in the Ship Screen. To create a blueprint, drag a fighter from one of your hangar slots into the farthest slot on the left. You will get a warning that you are about to destroy the fighter. Click okay to create a new blueprint for that fighter squad. Now, if you tick the small check box on that line (found right above the small "gear" icon) then fighter production will begin. Hovering your mouse over this check box will indicate the cost in metal and time to create the fighter. Hovering over the gear will show the amount of progress for the current fighter production.
Fighters can be produced on any ship (or station) with both a Hangar block and an Assembly. Assembly blocks require power to function, and may be turned off when not in use via the Ship Screen. Each fighter costs one of the six metals, based on the turret used to create it. The material cost seems to be dependent on the production requirement of the fighter and the material being used. Based on current tests, rarity and turret type do not directly affect the material cost of fighters.
If you have a factory, consider producing your fighters there and then transferring them to your ship. Factories usually already have lots of Assemblys.
materialCost = 1000 * materialConstant * (productionCost/1000) ^ 0.5
These are by no means 100% accurate, but they should get you pretty close.
Advantages of Using Fighters
Saving credits on turrets
It is much cheaper for a ship to achieve the same damage potential by building fighters using assembly blocks and resources, compared to building turrets in turret factories. Also fighters do not need Turret Control System .
Combat fighters will hit enemy ships much more often than a ship piloted by an AI captain that uses turrets.
A mining carrier with several squadrons of r-mining fighters, piloted by an AI captain, will generally mine more ore in the same amount of time than a mining ship that is using r-mining lasers, as fighters will be able to reach new asteroids much faster.