Zeus II

Shadow Reaper

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So the Fury is about half the mass and volume of the Cyclone TR when its in landing configuration. The Cyclone is 6 L x 8.75 W x 3.5 H and 27k kg. The Fury operational (and when contracted) is 7 (6.13) L x 5.4 (3.27) W x 3.8 (3) H and 15k kg.

So looks like a fit. There may actually be room for two Furies side by side in the Zeus ES bay. It appears the length is the issue and a Fury may not fit in the MR. This is a key observation to validate when choosing a version. Furthermore, if the Zeus ramp fits a Cyclone it is at least 9m wide and the bay is 11-12 m wide, so theoretically it could fit 3 Fury’s and still have room to walk between. Judicious use of the new S2 tractor could make loading and launching 3 Fury’s practical.

So this is one of the rare instances where carrying snubs has an appeal to me. I’d rather have a third (or fourth, or fifth) party member in a Fury than a turret, so despite I’d envy the MR its armory, EMP and quantum dampner, I think I’d favor the ES radar, shields and enhanced range.

Presuming the ES signatures are competitive with the Lancer, you could run it with weapons, 3 shields and a military reactor all switched off and an Eclipse reactor, pair of Snowpacks and a Sukoran running. You’d have minimal protection against both energy and ballistics, high thermal dump, and very easy to manage power handling. Switch everything else on only in a fight. Would make you very hard to see almost all the time, and yet with significant protection. (If you can’t tell, I love the Sukorans.)

There are not many ships that can fly the Sukoran on and have less than 6k sigs. It will be interesting to see what CIG gives the Zeus but I am intrigued. Note the engine exhausts are somewhat hidden, which is a thing you do when you want stealth; so could be this ship has figures akin to the Lancer. BTW, the Lancers and Cutties cannot fly like this because they lack a second reactor, so they’re stuck with a high output model that ruins stealth, or a stealth reactor that provides way too little power for so many shields and weapons. This is where the Zeus shines. This is precisely its niche. It powers and flies like an Uber Vanguard.

The shield refresh rate when running a Sukoran and three FR-76 is pretty stunning. There’s a whole combat strategy to be made of that.

This appears will offer some winning advantages over the 400i, which can’t run shields in stealth mode, can’t carry a snub, and despite the fancy holodisplay, offers inferior scan. The ES shows signs of a great daily driver. If it can actually fit 2 or 3 Furies, game changer for 4 or 5 man exploration/general mischief teams.

A second rare thing here is large (S3) scan from stealth. I don’t think that is in game, nor otherwise planned to be in game. The Apollo has an S3 reactor so can’t really be stealthed. Truly, this could be the only stealth S3 radar in game. If it can carry a pair or three Fury. . .well that’s interesting. It definitely begs the question whether we’ll ever see a stealth S4 radar ship. If not, this may be top pick for stealth attack wing Command and Control. So I can imagine this accompanying a dozen Arrows, four MIS and three Eclipse flying off a Lib on deep incursions into Vanduul space.

The Zeus has only one scan package, so presume you have it set to detect EM. If you’re exploring, it will tell you when a Redeemer, Herc, Corsair, Connie, Void Bomber, etc comes within 20-30 Km, and since none of these can see you unless they get within about 6 km, you get to decide if and when there’s an engagement and if so, you decide the terms. You attack first in whatever way you choose. I like that. You can watch someone from across the system or carefully shadow them and discover their destination, all the while invisible to them, a phantom in the inky black. You decide.

If the ES had four S7 torpedo tubes it would be my dream machine. As is, it appears to offer a revolution in combined stealth, scan and snub capabilities. A five man team means everyone but the Captain is swapping hot cotton, but life support will probably be able to manage that easily enough. I would look to put three Fury’s in the stern of this thing as soon as it enters the verse.

It may also be a better way to move entire attack wings for large battles. The Herc isn’t exactly stealthy and despite you need more pilots if you send several ES to replace a Herc hauling Fury’s, the transports have the huge advantage of stealth. Depends really how many cargo pilots you can rally to your cause. This is the first pocket carrier for small stealth fleets. It’s also a great escort for mine layers, stealth recon of distant systems, and covert planetary ops doing Close Air Support and protecting from bombers. The ability to insert three light fighters at great speed and distance is a key element in operations previous to combat. I am not aware of any stealth recon platforms with the range offered by the Zeus. Especially given it can scoop and refill Fury’s, and give their pilots a place to eat, sleep and stink, I think this may become a must have in numbers solution for lots of fleet ops needs. Pair one with three Tallies to improve their scan, torp lock range and survivability. There are a LOT of new applications here that come to mind.
 
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Shadow Reaper

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The A1 and C1 both have an SCM of 154 and a top speed of 1,120m/s. They pull 15.5 gees forward and 9.9 lateral, and are apparently significantly better in atmo. So generally a little more agile than a Black or even the Blue in atmo, but with significantly less top speed than the Blue (1210). Note the C1 cargo space was upgraded to 64.
 
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Richard Bong

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The A1 and C1 both have an SCM of 154 and a top speed of 1,120m/s. They pull 15.5 gees forward and 9.9 lateral, and are apparently significantly better in atmo. So generally a little more agile than a Black or even the Blue in atmo, but with significantly less top speed than the Blue (1210). Note the C1 cargo space was upgraded to 64.
Erkul says the Blue has better Pitch and Yaw but the Spirit has better roll.
Since Pitch and Yaw are equal the only need for roll is to change the direction of "up" for use of the main thrusters to strafe up.

I thought the Blue was supposed to have better forward acceleration than it does.

If those numbers are a starting place, and stay roughly proportional, then the MR makes less sense as a bounty hunter.
 

Ayeteeone

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Erkul says the Blue has better Pitch and Yaw but the Spirit has better roll.
Since Pitch and Yaw are equal the only need for roll is to change the direction of "up" for use of the main thrusters to strafe up.

I thought the Blue was supposed to have better forward acceleration than it does.

If those numbers are a starting place, and stay roughly proportional, then the MR makes less sense as a bounty hunter.
These are fair observations.

Some thoughts on the topic:
Had no problem doing Vanduul Swarm in the C1; just a data point, nothing more.
Cutty's fly terrible in atmo. The 'Master Modes' update will change the tuning but I doubt this weakness will go away.
The Blue was our sole example of heavy tackle, and long term it may not qualify as that if CIG follow the route of tiering interdiction performance.
The MR could be fairly fast for size; I'd expect it to be faster than whatever ship classes CIG positions it against.
IMO the MR is undergunned for the job. Since it doesn't have extensive hardpoints to mount disruptors and damage weapons it seems like it will need to rely on the EMP to stun the target. It also feels lightly armed compared to the relatively larger targets it will be able to trap with ease.

Like every other game loop CIG is developing there will be tiers.. my answer has been to keep a Hawk (always!) and pick up an MR for team play.

This set (MR, ES, CL) allowed me to do a hangar cleanout as it fills 3 useful roles. Quite curious to see what IAE is going to bring if this is the appetizer!
 
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Talonsbane

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And expensive. I came here to find a support group with my costly jpeg habit thinking a 12 step program. Not only has this not helped but I've since added many more jpegs to my collection and picked up new habits.
I understand how you feel entirely, since I joined, I quickly became concierge & then have multiplied how much I've backed into Praetorian levels. I've never had more fun though than chatting, hanging out & theory crafting with each of you.
 

Richard Bong

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These are fair observations.

Some thoughts on the topic:
Had no problem doing Vanduul Swarm in the C1; just a data point, nothing more.
Cutty's fly terrible in atmo. The 'Master Modes' update will change the tuning but I doubt this weakness will go away.
The Blue was our sole example of heavy tackle, and long term it may not qualify as that if CIG follow the route of tiering interdiction performance.
The MR could be fairly fast for size; I'd expect it to be faster than whatever ship classes CIG positions it against.
IMO the MR is undergunned for the job. Since it doesn't have extensive hardpoints to mount disruptors and damage weapons it seems like it will need to rely on the EMP to stun the target. It also feels lightly armed compared to the relatively larger targets it will be able to trap with ease.

Like every other game loop CIG is developing there will be tiers.. my answer has been to keep a Hawk (always!) and pick up an MR for team play.

This set (MR, ES, CL) allowed me to do a hangar cleanout as it fills 3 useful roles. Quite curious to see what IAE is going to bring if this is the appetizer!
The Hawks (my wife and I each have one) definitely stay. We each also have a Blue and a CCU from Blue to MR. Most of our ships are paired so we fly with a wingman. I have a Liberator making it so the Hawks aren't really range limited.

If the MR can't run things down and stay with them, it doesn't make for much of a bounty hunter ship. Though it is more Lucy than Razorcrest.
 

Shadow Reaper

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That’s true, but we don’t want to see the Blue relegated to the pile of useless. Rather, the MR seems to be taking only the larger ships from the Blue’s list of targets. It may be a step up, but primarily in that it can carry more boarders , take more hits and take larger ships.

CIG has always been clear they want boarders to be attacking ships larger than their own. The question seems to me, against a larger ship like say a Carrack, why prefer the MR over the Blue? I think the reason should be the MR can take limited hits from the Carrack guns. So ideally, the Blue still has a place secured by its enviable speed and the MR has a place due to it’s relative tankiness. It’s all good, if the MR can catch a Carrack. Easier said than done.
 

Richard Bong

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That’s true, but we don’t want to see the Blue relegated to the pile of useless. Rather, the MR seems to be taking only the larger ships from the Blue’s list of targets. It may be a step up, but primarily in that it can carry more boarders , take more hits and take larger ships.

CIG has always been clear they want boarders to be attacking ships larger than their own. The question seems to me, against a larger ship like say a Carrack, why prefer the MR over the Blue? I think the reason should be the MR can take limited hits from the Carrack guns. So ideally, the Blue still has a place secured by its enviable speed and the MR has a place due to it’s relative tankiness. It’s all good, if the MR can catch a Carrack. Easier said than done.
CIG has also been clear they want multiple ships in the same space doing the same job. I don't really see the MR and Blue in different tiers for Bounty Hunting. More like here is two different ways to take the same target. One doesn't clearly outshine the other.
Like the Stalker vs. the Hawk.

Comparison:
  • The MR has a slight edge in guns, but the Blue has an edge in missiles.
  • The MR has an EMP, but CIG has implied you can put an EMP on a size 4 Ordinance Hardpoint (Sabre Raven) and the Blue has size 4 hardpoints to spare so that may or may not matter. .
  • The Blue is listed as having a tractor beam, the MR isn't.
  • The MR is better protected, the Blue is more agile.
  • For FPS the Blue and the MR have lots of Weapons Racks. The MR may end up with more armor racks.
  • The MR looks more comfortable.
  • The MR design crew size is 3 and the Blue has a design crew size of 2 but has 3 seats.
  • The MR has a little more cargo space, and appears to be able to carry a Cyclone.
 
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Richard Bong

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These are fair observations.

Some thoughts on the topic:
Had no problem doing Vanduul Swarm in the C1; just a data point, nothing more.
Cutty's fly terrible in atmo. The 'Master Modes' update will change the tuning but I doubt this weakness will go away.
The Blue was our sole example of heavy tackle, and long term it may not qualify as that if CIG follow the route of tiering interdiction performance.
The MR could be fairly fast for size; I'd expect it to be faster than whatever ship classes CIG positions it against.
IMO the MR is undergunned for the job. Since it doesn't have extensive hardpoints to mount disruptors and damage weapons it seems like it will need to rely on the EMP to stun the target. It also feels lightly armed compared to the relatively larger targets it will be able to trap with ease.

Like every other game loop CIG is developing there will be tiers.. my answer has been to keep a Hawk (always!) and pick up an MR for team play.

This set (MR, ES, CL) allowed me to do a hangar cleanout as it fills 3 useful roles. Quite curious to see what IAE is going to bring if this is the appetizer!
I see the MR and Blue being in the same tier, like the Hawk and Stalker are both Bounty Starters.

My guess is the next tier is likely to be Connie/Tali size (both are mentioned as bounty hunting ships.)
 

CRISS9000

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Since we know the Spirit is supposed to fly better than the Zeus II, how does the Spirit fly compared to the Cutlass Blue?
keep in mind there will be a re-do of the handling of all ships and vehicles.

I do know that the Cutlass is supposed to be the one with most firepower out of all comparable ships. and in the same vein, the Spirit is meant to be the most agile, the Freelancer is meant to have the most missiles, and the Zeus is supposed to be the tankiest. each will have their own strengths and weaknesses.
 

Shadow Reaper

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So, I came across a graphic of the ST version I had not seen. At time index 7:32 here, you can see two graphics both of which show a dorsal turret like on the MR. Note the background is of a battle. CIG has sent us little love notes like this before. I think it’s safe to say the ST is a combat variant.

My guess is it has the same interior as the MR, but also the forth shield from the ES. I’m still hoping for quad S7 torpedo tubes but admit this is unlikely. Can we get the S3 radar from the ES? Whatever this is packing, I think they pushed back the release so players will give the other variants real consideration.

No, this is not for racing. This is for fighting.
 

Daak Gelrin

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So, I came across a graphic of the ST version I had not seen. At time index 7:32 here, you can see two graphics both of which show a dorsal turret like on the MR. Note the background is of a battle. CIG has sent us little love notes like this before. I think it’s safe to say the ST is a combat variant.
Ooo, nice find! I hadn't noticed the ST variant identifier on that picture before. I think you're correct in assuming the ST is a combat or military variant. Maybe heavier armor, 4th shield, upper turret and all.

Personally, I prefer to collect every military variant of ships that I can find.
Screenshot 2023-11-11 at 08-09-19 Zeus MKII Concept Ship Analysis & Variants 💣 The Cutlass & F...png
 

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Richard Bong

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keep in mind there will be a re-do of the handling of all ships and vehicles.

I do know that the Cutlass is supposed to be the one with most firepower out of all comparable ships. and in the same vein, the Spirit is meant to be the most agile, the Freelancer is meant to have the most missiles, and the Zeus is supposed to be the tankiest. each will have their own strengths and weaknesses.
I figure that while the flight model is changing, and should increase the differences when that happens, the relative comparison should stay the same.
The Q&A specifically says the Zeus II should be less agile than the Spirit. The comparison between the Blue and the Spirit, should give an indication on the intention for where those three ships should stand when all is said and done.
 

CRISS9000

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I'm still of the belief that the ST is for priority transport, and that the extra turret is for the protection of VIPs.

I guess only time will tell. if we never hear anything about the ST ever again, then it's been scrapped. but if CIG do bring it up a few years from now, then we will learn what it's really for.

it's pointless to speculate now.
 
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