Point blank the Imp Bomber is my favorite ship in the game. I just love the way it flies and drifts. It has character. I’m not sure if its still OP. But its still very playable after nerfing, the health the hull, meme beaming, and the rotary cannon. My highest enemy kills after the nerf (40) is almost double that of any other ship I’ve flown (22 with the X-wing). Sadly for most of pre-nerf time, I wasn’t very good yet, but after almost 100 hours, I’ve figured out a few things, and would like to share them. I’m certainly not the best bomber. There’s certainly plenty of streamers who can fly circles around me, but hopefully I can still be of help. And if you are one of those players, please feel free to correct me and/or add to the guide.
Probably the most noob friendly ship. If I can fly it and do well, believe me anybody can. For me the key is survivability. Do everything you can to not die. Dying shuts you out of the game and swings morale. Your number 1 goal should be to die as little as possible. It hurts you and hurts the team.
3750k health is huge. Have specific triggers for when to retreat and when to avoid engaging. At 60 I look to get in CS dmg and avoid a dog fight. At 40 I start retreat as fast as I can. Despite having more total health than the Y-wing loadout I use, it doesn’t feel as bulky. (I use the Y-wing solely on defense with deflector hull and overloaded shields, and basically feel invincible with it.) But in the imp bomber, I really try to avoid taking damage as much as possible, unless an A-wing is trying to joust me. At 115 Speed and 110 acceleration, you might not be winning any races, but as long as you have boost you’re usually fast enough to escape any danger.
The Speed is the biggest difference between the Y-wing and imp bomber. One ship can fly in and get out, the other can’t. The one thing you must avoid though is taking on multiple enemies at once. You have the fire power and bulk to take on anyone 1 on 1. But once some of his teammates show up to the fight you have no chance.
The Maneuverability is at 56, which is far lower than my Y-wing buildout, but ironically somehow higher than my X-wing loadout (which is my 2nd favorite ship). I find maneuverability doesn’t matter too much as long as you have boost. I’m sure this will change as I rank up, but for now boost is enough to supplement low maneuverability.
I run the Ion jet engines and boost around the map like a mad man. This was very powerful with the Rotary Cannons, because you could max out your boost very quickly and shunt the power over to lasers for basically infinite ammo. Its still highly effective with standard lasers.
Side note: This is what I think they should have nerfed instead of the rotary cannon. Shunting should have a delay to regaining energy. And with the nerf to shunting, the Tie fighter and interceptor should have received some sort of buff, probably something along the lines of having a larger ammo clip. I don’t fly those ships too often, but when I do, I feel I never have enough ammo in the fighter and just die to everything in the interceptor.
Ok now that’s out of the way. Let’s discuss the Loadout, I think is best for learning the game.
Lasers: Standard -Guided Rotary just doesn’t do enough dmg and you can’t turn while using it.
Left Aux: Boost Extension – Survivability is everything. When in doubt, run away as fast as you can. Boosting and turning. Zig Zag as if you weren’t the least memorable Stark.
Right Aux: Multi-lock missile. These are the most overpower aux not being discussed. They just farm AI and take out turrets. You don’t even need to see to use them. Whenever you hear 3-4 beeps hit the right bumper and let loose the barrage.
Countermeasures: Seeker Warheads. They have the most ammo (4) and you can use it while your zig zagging your behind off back to the Frigates.
Hull: Reinforced. Even after the nerf its crazy good. And like I said, survivability is everything. Assume reinforced hull for every loadout.
Engine: Ion Jet. Boost energy is everything. Flying the bomber is like steering a ship or driving a Rolls Royce. You need to be constantly boosting around your enemies to have a chance. And any excess boost needs to be shunted over to your lasers to deal maximum dmg.
More in depth Strategy: Always prioritize power to engines. Whenever the engine bar is full shunt, the power to lasers, unless you think you’re going to need boost soon. At the start of the match, lag slightly behind your team. Once the engagement occurs rush the enemy AI fighters and take out 4 of them with your Multi-Locke Missile. After that join in the dogfight, where hopefully you have some advantage against lower health, lower powered enemies. Try to ambush one fighter at a time. Whenever you feel endanger don’t go for the extra kill. Just boost away as fast as you can.
On defense: Take out a wave or 2 of enemy AI. This really depends on the map. On some their plentiful and come to you. On others not so much. Then turret around frigate away from the corvette. Don’t stray away from your Capital Ships. When all the enemies on that side are dead or have been pushed away, turret on the other side. Try to pick off a wave of 2-3 AI on the way over. Turret around the frigate until the enemies are dead or pushed off. If the frigate’s shields are low or there’s absolutely nothing else to shoot at take out the Corvette. When morale flips the ship gets destroyed and it really doesn’t do much damage to the frigates until their shields are low. However it can do a lot of damage to you.
On offense: Try to dogfight as far away from their CSs as possible. Being closer to yours mean a shorter distance to safety and less damage. After you have pushed or killed any stragglers or brave enemy pilots away out of the middle, look at the map to determine which frigate you will attack. Don’t chase down enemy A-wings. They will fly circles around you. At best you’ll get a kill after wasting half the round. Save your multi-lock missile for taking out turrets. Farming AI on offense isn’t effective. They only yield 3-4 points per wave as opposed to the 9-12 points on defense.
If it all the enemies are huddled around one frigate go to the other one. Use multi-lock to take out turrets. Boost back and forth taking out as many turrets as possible. Get in as much damage as possible with lasers. When all turrets are down and if the coast is clear, you may mosquito the frigate. Whenever enemy pilots come within range, retreat and try to lure them to the middle of the map.
Keep a constant watch of the morale, the map and your health. 60% health stop shunt power to your lasers for the last time. Do one more run and then get out of there. 40% retreat as fast as you can back to the ships. Adapt these numbers as you see fit. If you see a dip in your morale, its most likely because some of your allies were killed. Check the map, and if you’re on even numbers or less retreat to the middle.
If when you checked the map, the enemy numbers were fairly even across the frigates, go to the side of your Raider. Use it as a shield and turret underneath it. When the coast is clear you may begin your attack on the frigate. If you’re ever outmanned, at low health or just have a bad feeling, get out of there. Don’t depend on the Raider.
Attacking the MC-75: Same concepts as the Frigates. Push the enemies back to the CS. Don’t chase interceptors. Attack the less defended side. If its even go to the side of the raider. Try to focus on using your multi-lock missiles to take out turrets. When coast is clear go for sub-systems, shields first.
Defending the ISD: Same concept as the Frigates. Turret around the top of the ISD. Take out enemy AI whenever you have the chance. Don’t worry about Corvette unless shields are low. If/when shields get low ignore staying by the ship. Try to engage the bombers and fighters as fast as possible with a heavy priority on bombers.
Support are easy picking. Prioritize them. Not only are they the easiest kills, killing them yields the most for the team. Some of them run pretty tanky builds and flee at the drop of danger. Don’t chase them. Pushing them away is a an absolute win.
Do not engage multiple enemies. Try to keep track of enemies on radar and the map. The number 1 reason I die is getting engaged by an enemy, while I’m already engaged with another one.
Boost energy is your most vital resource. The number 2 reason I die is running out of boost.
Try to keep track of direction. The 3rd most reason I die, is flying the wrong way. Its very easy to get confused and disorientated in the middle of a dog fight. Constantly check the map and reorientation yourself. Know your exit.
Experiment with different loadouts. I’m going to write up another post on loadouts.
I highly recommend trying out the Goliath missile swapping out the multi-lock missile. Its not quite as effective as the multi-lock when it comes to free damage and taking out enemy AI. But a shot to the middle fighter usually does the trick. But the goliath is better in every other phase. It deals huge damage to Capital ships. You can dummy fire it in jousts. And remember when I said not to chase down A-wings? well if you get good with Goliath, they wreck havoc on them. They explode on impact, so most counter measures don’t work. And in crowded maps you can dummy fire at an obstacle and let the splash take care of the enemy A-wing. Remember I said ignore the Corvette? Well they wreck havoc on Corvettes. Takes out half the turrets and deals massive damage. If you feel you’ve graduated from dedicated AI hunting, try out the Goliath, especially since the latest patch nerfed the AI farm strategy.
I also really love mines especially on dense maps with a ton of obstacles or against an A-wing heavy team. There’s an endless amount of tactics with them. Admittedly they probably won’t work against high skilled opponents, but for now they wreck. Stuck in a dogfight circle of death? Drop a couple of mines. If they stay on course, they’re going to run right into them. If they dodge them, boost out and get the drop on them. Its really difficult to dogfight through an asteroid field and avoid mines. I love to leave them as little surprises behind the frigate’s tower and behind the ISD’s shield generators. Place them in key spots. Even if they’re not killing anyone, they can annoy and buy you time. An A-wing starts firing at you while you’re engaged with another target. Boost turn. Drop a mine. Boost turn. and boost out of there. Mines do work on your greatest enemies: extended dog fights and A-wings. If you feel you’ve graduated from running away from everything try swapping out the Boost Kit for Mines.
Proton bombs. You’re a bomber. Proton bombs are kind of you’re thing. If you feel you no longer need the extra help surviving against A-wings, try swapping out the mines for the bombs. Maybe even have separate load outs for different phases of the game. Though when running bombs, I recommend using unstable engine over ion jet. Speed and acceleration are you’re best friends on bombing runs. Boost kit or Shields over multi-lock/Goliath depending on how far you want to lean into your bombing role.