The Scorpion is a tier-1 battleship of the Caldari Navy. Listed as a prototype battleship, it specializes in electronic warfare. It's 20% bonus to ECM optimal and falloff ranges give it the longest base projection of ECM modules of any warship. With plentiful mid-slots and a non-preferential weapons battery, the Scorpion is one of the most flexible ships in the game.
The Scorpion's primary roles can be found in PvP combat. In fleet battles, the Scorpion is classified as a support battleship. Scorpions are often found not on the battle line, but sitting further back using their long range ECM modules reduce the damage-dealing potential of enemy fleets. A Scorpion with decent skills can jam out to 200km, (optimal + falloff) allowing it to neutralize all but the longest-ranged enemy snipers. With the Scorpion's size and hitpoints, it is able to receive more punishment than a recon cruiser in large engagements.
In smaller operations, the Scorpion can be made to work well as a gate-camping or raiding battleship, easily trapping and destroying ships smaller than itself. Plentiful mid slots allow it to fit a warp scrambler and propulsion webber without sacrificing too much of its tank. In this role, a Scorpion can easily take down ships cruiser sized and below. Pilots should be be aware though that without tanking or damage bonuses, The Scorpion is at a disadvantage in a slugfest against other battleships, and a well fitted battlecruiser or heavy assault cruiser will put the ship at risk. With skillful handling and good use of ECM, however, a solo Scorpion can be dangerous in the right hands.
The Scorpion is often passed over for PvE in favor of it's bigger brother, the Raven. Aspiring Caldari pilots who cannot afford the cost of the Raven may find the Scorpion to be a good interm solution, but with the arrival of the Drake-class Battlecruiser, there are few arguments for this.
See also: Scorpion (Fitting)
See Also: Weapons Guide
As a support battleship, the Scorpion's “main armament” consists of it's ECM modules. With 8 mid-slots, this allows for plenty of space for numerous ECM modules while still allowing for a tank to be fitted. ECM modules can be a mix of racial (highly effective against specific sensor types) or multi-spectral (moderately effective against all types), depending on expected enemy ship composition.
As the Scorpion has no bonuses associated with it's high-slots, pilot discretion is the rule for weapons loadout. 4 cruise missile launchers are often fitted due to to prevalence of missile-related skills amongst Caldari pilots. The remaining two slots are often used for railgun turrets or a heavy nosferatu or energy neutralizer. Smart bombs can also be fitted. In fleet battles, the Scorpion is not expected to contribute significantly to the fleet's, so a pilot is free to choose the weapons he feels would be the best defense for his ship.
See Also: Defense Guide
Pilots who choose to focus on ECM look to the low slots for defense. A damage control and 1600mm armor plate will provide a large buffer of hit points, allowing a Scorpion pilot ample time to escape should the ship start drawing large amounts of fire, or enough time to cycle the ECM modules onto a new target in order to negate the attacking ship.
Some Scorpion pilots forgo ECM entirely, and instead use all 8 mid-slots to form a very formidable shield tank. These battleships are often used in a bait role, drawing the firepower of an enemy fleet away from the more damaging battleships and soak up fire as long as possible. This is usually done with a number of extenders and hardeners. Active shield boosting setups can be used as well, but most pilots go for a passive setup where the number of slots can be used to boost shield points to almost unheard of levels.
Pilots will almost always want to fit a sensor booster in order to take maximum advantage of their ECM range, especially when operating as a fleet when long range combat is the norm. A micro warp drive or afterburner is often encouraged as well when on the offensive, in order to allow the otherwise slow ship to escape warp disruption bubbles, albeit at the expense of a drained capacitor. In addition, one or two signal distortion amplifiers in the low-slots can provide a sizable boost to the Scorpion's already powerful ECM modules.
Drone loadout is flexible, and very much influenced on what a Scorpion's role will be. Combat drones can be loaded to provide additional firepower, while webbing drones can free up an otherwise used midslot for solo Scorpions on the prowl. Logistics drones are often encouraged for Scorpions serving on the rear line of a fleet, providing extra tanking ability to sniper battleships. Scorpions that expect to fight at closer ranges may prefer a batch of ECM drones to give them even more jamming ability.
Due to the disparity of roles, this will be broken into two sections, Fleet Tactics and Small Group/Solo tactics.
The Scorpion often competes with the Rook in the role of heavy ECM platform, but there are many reasons as to why the Scorpion is often preferred. Not far down that list is Range. Large fleet engagements are often fought at distances of 100km or more whenever possible, in order to stay out of range of webbers and energy neutralizers and to allow ships the flexibility to engage/disengage at will. The Scorpion's long range is key here as it can sit on the sniper's firing line, giving and receiving support from friendly battleships while neutralizing the enemy's (in addition to staying out of typical cruiser and frigate range). The Scorpion can absorb many more hits than a comparable recon cruiser, allowing it to stay in a fight longer and even withdraw/recommit as necessary.
Scorpions in a fleet will often loiter on the far edges of a battle near other friendly battleships, "sniping" with it's own ECM modules on as many targets as possible in order to reduce an enemy's firepower. This often attracts attention, and pilots should keep an eye for enemy cruisers and frigates looking to engage it at close range. Cruise missiles can discourage most cruisers from attacking without support, but HACs will be undeterred. Interceptors are a problem, as Scorpion's will rarely carry a webber in these circumstances, and it's own weapons will rarely be effective. In these instances re-cycling the ECM modules to these targets is required, thus allowing a Scorpion to escape to a nearby planet, asteroid belt, or known friendly moon. Once disengaged, a Scorpion pilot can warp back to the battle (often using a friendly sniper) to reengage and jam targets once the enemy has called new primary targets. This process can be repeated as often as necessary, continually harassing the enemy and denying him the use of his weapons at repeated moments during the battle.
Against single or few targets, the Scorpion is free to drop the number of ECM jammers carried and diversify its loadout. Carrying a few ECM jammers, webber, and warp disruptor, a Scorpion can completely neutralize most targets, provided it can catch one. A microwarp drive burst into webifier range and webbing drones can be utilized to slow a target once it's been hit with a warp disruptor.
Scorpions will want to be careful about the prey they catch, however. While some mid-slots are generally left over to form a moderately strong shield tank; it won't hold in the face of a well fitted HAC or battlecruiser, let alone another battleship. Another consideration are the non-augmented weapons - due to their relatively low firepower, Scorpions will want to stick to targets they know they can destroy (and more importantly targets they know they can jam). This does not eliminate the list of lucrative targets however; a Scorpion can make for a very effective solo commerce raider against mining barges, industrials, and light cruisers.
Not as much of an issue in the long ranges of a fleet battle, but at shorter distances, are the threats of drones. Once a command has been issued, drones will continue to attack a target even after the controlling ship has been jammed. For this reason Scorpion pilots may want to fit a large smartbomb to deal with these pesky craft.
As most Scorpion pilots fly with a small or non-existent tank, any skills that maximize hitpoints are crucial, more so than on other ships. Skills such as Energy Emission systems and propulsion jamming will allow a pilot greater flexibility in weapons loadout. It goes without saying that a strong skillset in ECM (Long Rang Jamming, Signal Suppression, Electronic Warfare, etc) will give a Scorpion pilot the most benefit from his ECM modules.
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