Sins Of A Solar Empire Capital Ship Guide: Vasari Capital Ships
The Vasari were once rulers of the galaxy. Considering this, you'd expect their capital ships to be monsters, capable of devouring planets. In reality, the Vasari's capitals are not quite that fearsome. But several of them are extremely nasty in combat, and their support capitals are worth learning.
For The Empire!
The Vasari are well known for having very powerful but very expensive ships. In the interests of balance, their capital ships do not follow suit, and are not - in terms of hull strength or base weapons strength - any better than those of the other races. Although this is a little disappointing for the Vasari, the fact that the first capital ship in Sins Of A Solar Empire is free is the obvious source for this design choice.
Even so, a capital ship is a capital ship, and the Vasari have a good selection. Like the Advent, they have a very powerful colonization ship, which helps with gaining an early-game edge. They also have two good combat ships, including a support capital which is among the best in terms of combat ability.
The battleship of the Vasari capital fleet, the Kortul is first and foremost a strong offensive capital capable of dealing major damage to enemy formations without using it's abilities at all. This alone makes it a strong choice, although the strength of some of the Vasari's other capitals does not make it as good of a choice for a first capital as the TEC's Kol. Still, if you want a ship that is primarily combat-oriented, this is the one to build, and it is in fact the most offensively-oriented capital out of all the battleships in the game.
The Devestator has three offensive abilities, all of which are good. The first two are Power Surge and Disruptive Strikes. Power Surge dramatically increase the firing rate of the Devestator's weapons and also increases shield regeneration by a small amount. When fully upgraded, Power Surge has a long duration and increases the rate at which the ship's weapons fire by four times. This is an insane offensive combat buff, and it's good when the Devestator is used as a straight-up combat ship. Disruptive Strikes is a passive offensive ability that gives all of the Devestator's weapons a chance to destroy enemy anti-matter and increase enemy ability cool-downs. Stacked with Power Surge, this makes the Devestator a wrecking ball against support cruisers and capitals.
The third offensive ability is Volatile Nanites, a Ultimate Ability which increases damage done to enemies in its area of effect by 30%. It also causes enemy ships which explode to deal out 150 points of damage to nearby enemy vessels. This is an outstanding combat buff which can dramatically increase overall fleet damage against a clump of enemy vessels. It is particularly good against frigate blobs, as each enemy frigate that pops does damage to nearby frigates, causing a chain reaction of explosions.
Lastly, the Devestator has Jam Weapons, which disables the weapons of enemy strikecraft for a long duration. This is not useful if you don't actually have a strikecraft counter, since it does not actual damage to the strikecraft. When used against large formations of enemy strikecraft which are fighting your own strikecraft however, it will turn the tide of battle.
Like any other carrier class capital ship, the Skiranta is not a great choice for a first capital due to its weak offensive and defensive abilities. It will lose most toe-to-toe battles against enemy capital ships of a similar level as itself. The Skiranta does not have the greatest abilities either, which means that most players consider it to be a second-rate capital ship overall.
The Skiranta has two abilities that support strikecraft. The first two are Microphasing Aura and Scramble Bombers. Microphasing Aura is a strange but useful ability that causes nearby friendly strike-craft to randomly teleport nearer to their target. This teleport confuses enemy weapons, and the strikecraft are immune while they are teleporting. It is in effect, a combat buff that effects all fighters, and helps give an edge in combat. It is also passive, always on and never costs anti-matter. Scramble Bombers instantly adds a squadron of bombers, which lasts for a long duration. This is not a very good ability, as a single squad of bombers is probably not going to turn the tide of even a small skirmish.
Along the theme of Scramble Bombers, the Skiranta's ultimate ability is called Replicate Forces. This ability is targeted on a friendly frigate or cruiser, and it instantly makes three fully-functional copies of the target which last a long period of time. This is best in the late game, when you have ships like cruisers available. It can also be used on siege frigates to increase the rate of orbital bombardment.
The Skiranta's best ability however, is Repair Cloud. This increases the hull regeneration rate of nearby friendly ships, regenerating up to 300 points of damage over its duration once fully upgraded. This is basically a combat heal. It is weak in comparison to the Advent Mothership's Shield Regeneration, but a heal is a heal, and it is nice that this adds directly to hitpoints rather than shielding.
The Jarrasul is the Vasari's colonizing ship, and it is a very strong one. Compared to the other colonizing ships, it is probably superior to both in terms of individual combat ability. It's colonizing trait is probably the weakest of all colonizing capital ships, as it only reduces structure build time by 20% for the planet that it colonizes. The rate at which planetary improvements are built is almost never an issue, so this is no more useful than the abilities of a colonizing frigate.
The Jarrasul makes up for this with some outstanding offensive abilities though. The most direct of these is Gravity Warhead. Gravity Warhead does no damage, but it makes a target enemy ship unable to phase jump for a short duration. It also reduces the target's acceleration and mobility. This is great for ensuring that enemy capital ships do not escape, but it is generally inferior to the Ion Bolt on the Akkan, as it does not disable the target's weapons or abilities.
Another offensive ability is the Nano-disassembler, a very damaging ability which reduces the armor of a target enemy vessel and also does damage which bypasses shielding. The armor reduction is significant, and the damage dealt is up to 1200 points once this ability is fully upgraded. Although not the most devastating ability in the game, the low anti-matter cost and cool-down of the ability makes this very effective against enemy capital ships. It is on par with the offensive weapons on most battleship class capital ships.
Finally, the Jarrasul has the Drain Planet ultimate ability. If you want to suck away your enemy's soul, this is the ability for you. It is a channeled ability, which means that it can be interrupted. If not stopped however, Drain Planet will deal over a thousand points of damage to a planet's health, kill sixty population, and steal 450 metal and crystal resources. This makes it the best anti-planet ability in the game, although Embargo on the TEC's Sova Carrier is better for economic warfare.
A support capital, the Marauder is probably the worst Vasari capital ship in terms of combat ability, with the exception of the Skiranta. Its best abilities are pure support abilities, increasing traits of friendly vessels, which makes the Marauder very vulnerable on its own. When paired with a friendly capital ship of high level - like an Evacuator or Devestaor - the Antorak shines.
The Antorak has two targetable support abilities, Phase Out Hull and Distort Gravity. Phase Out Hull is a short duration get-out-of-jail-free card for a friendly vessel, or a short duration disable for a enemy vessel. The target of Phase Out Hull is rendered completely invulnerable, but it is completely disabled and cannot be targeted. Used on a friendly vessel, it can distract enemies, keeping it from being destroyed. On an enemy vessel, it renders the vessel useless for a short period. Distort Gravity is a targetable speed buff that makes a friendly ship faster, more mobile and immune to phase jump inhibitors. The uses for this are many. It can help a friendly vessel flee, or help a friendly capital ship get into position to unleash a powerful attack.
Like the Evacuator, the Antorak has an anti-planet ability, in this case known as Subversion. Subversion targets a planet and substantially increases the build time of all ships and structures at that planet. There has been some talk about using this as a rush strategy, but doing so is risky, as the Antorak is a poor combat vessel.
Finally, the Antorak's Ultimate Ability is Stablize Phase Space. This turns the Antorak into a phase jump gate. Used well, this ability can be amazing. It allows the fleet accompanying your Antorak to phase to other phase gates you own, lettings you quickly send back a defensive fleet, or quickly bring in an offensive fleet. A good player can pull off some nasty ambushes in this fashion.
In many ways, the Desolator can be considered the Vasari's version of the TEC's Marza dreadnought, and vice-versa. Both ships are similar in many ways, particularly in their strong offensive abilities against both planets and enemy ships. The Vulkora however, is probably not as powerful when its abilities are not in use, and its offensive abilities are not as damaging. It is probably the best capital ship in the game however, when it comes to simple planet killing.
The Vulkora has two offensive abilities against enemy ships. The first is Phase Missile Swarm, which fires numerous missiles which will deal damage to a capped number of targets. The amount of damage to each target will be 600 when this is fully upgraded, which is nothing to laugh at considering the moderate anti-matter cost and low cooldown. The maximum targets is capped however, so there is a limit to the destruction. The Vulkora also has the channeled Ultimate Ability called Disintegration, which leechs a large number of hitpoints from a target and adds it to the Vulkora. This is channeled, so it can be interrupted. If the full duration occurs however, this will cause 1200 points of damage and heal nearly that many points of the Vulkora's hull damage. This is very nasty against enemy capital ships which are going toe-to-toe with the Vulkora.
Besides offensive abilities against ships, the Vulkora also has two offensive abilities for use against planets and structures. The first is Deploy Siege Platform, which places a anti-planet turret in orbit of a planet. Upgrading the ability makes the platform more deadly. The platform is weak, but has a long duration. Against planets, it is not as good as the Jarrasul's Drain Planet, but it also isn't an Ultimate Ability. The Vulkora also has Assault Specialization, which makes the Vulkora deadly against static defenses and planets. It is a passive buff that causes the Vulkora's phase missiles to do up to 25 points more damage per missile against structures and which also decreases the cooldown of bombardment weapons. Fully upgraded, the Vulkora becomes a planet-bombardment machine gun.