June 2009

SFB Tactic of the month [continued]

When using bombers, you must use your ships to protect them from being tractored by the enemy. Bombers cannot do a breakaway maneuver to break a tractor lock upon them (they have no HET available).

They are extremely vulnerable to small ships or PFs swooping in at high speed, grabbing one with a tractor beam, zipping away at Speed 30, rotating the bomber to be out of its heavy weapon arcs, and destroying the bomber at their leisure (or boarding and capturing them).

Minesweeper PFs, PF leaders, and all Orion PFs can be very useful in this role, as they are the only PFs equipped with fully functioning tractor beams. A Fi-Con (except for the rare Fi-Con leaders) is not, as itis armed with external shuttle boxes, not tractor beams.

Care must be taken to tractor the bomber from its rear arc in order to keep it from turning to bring its weapons into arc for a close range shot. Note that a bomber tractored moving faster than Speed zero cannot do Tactical Maneuvers under (J4.11), but such a bomber could use Emergency Deceleration (J4.13) and then use Tactical Maneuvers (two impulses later), but at that point you could drop the tractor leaving the bomber dead in space to be dealt with later.