The frigate class of ships consist of light and fast but comparatively fragile ships. Players start with the ability to fly basic frigate-class ships. Their variety allows for a broad range of ships tailored to different profiles. For example the Caldari Kestrel, while unable to mount guns, is able to mount four missile launchers and sports a comparatively large cargo hold. The Amarr Punisher, while slow, has the toughest armour of any frigate. Generally frigates lack the durability or damage output of larger ship classes and are at most able to fit three to four small weapons. However, frigates are significantly faster and more difficult to hit than larger ships. They remain cost-effective because they are cheap and, in large numbers, can become dangerous to larger ship types. Due to their relatively small size and speed a skilled player may mount electronic warfare or navigational interference systems on a frigate in order to immobilize larger ships. Each faction has six types of frigates with a further number of specialized Tech II variants for more specific profiles.
Fleets of Tech I frigates can be a way for new players to fight against opponents who go after them with smaller numbers of battleships and heavy assault cruisers. Experienced players can also put frigate wings to good use as an alternative to larger, more costly ships, using the money saved to outfit the frigates with more advanced equipment and weaponry. For example a level 3 frigate, such as the Caldari Merlin or the Minmatar Rifter, typically sells for approximately 250 thousand ISK on the in-game market while the price of a battleship may exceed 100 million ISK. However, with the advent of specialized Tech II assault frigates and interceptors this tactic has become less common.
Tech 1 FrigatesEdit
|Amarr Tech 1 Frigates|
|Caldari Tech 1 Frigates|
|Gallente Tech 1 Frigates|
|Minmatar Tech 1 Frigates|
Tech 2 FrigatesEdit
Assault ships are frigates that are designed with firepower in mind. They are more durable than Tech I frigates with the capacity to mount a more damaging weapon loadout and stronger defences while sacrificing speed. Two types exist for each major faction, each catering to a certain more specialized individual style of combat.
|Amarr Assault Frigates||Caldari Assault Frigates|
|Gallente Assault Frigates||Minmatar Assault Frigates|
Covert Ops ShipsEdit
Covert Ops frigates are designed to mount cloaking systems that allow them to fly undetected. Although they are relatively fragile they are designed to be able to vanish when threatened. These ships are also helpful for example as scouts. The Covert Ops frigate is able to mount a Covert Ops cloaking device that allows warping while cloaked. They also excel at finding hidden enemy ships through the use of scan probes. Care must be taken, however, when using cloaking devices due to the fact that cloaking devices will deactivate if the ship gets within 2 km of any other ship or celestial object, such as asteroids, a stargate, space stations or cargo containers. Additionally, cloaking devices cannot be activated if a hostile target lock is present, meaning that being uncloaked in the presence of a hostile ship is perilous.
|Amarr Covert Ops Frigates||Caldari Covert Ops Frigates|
|Gallente Covert Ops Frigates||Minmatar Covert Ops Frigates|
Electronic Attack ShipsEdit
The electronic attack ships are essentially frigate equivalents of the combat recons. While they are somewhat lacking in electronic warfare capabilities and firepower compared to the combat recons, they should nevertheless not be under estimated. With the mobility of frigate hulls they are valuable assets for roaming frigate gangs.
|Amarr Electronic Attack Frigate||Caldari Electronic Attack Frigate|
|Gallente Electronic Attack Frigate||Minmatar Electronic Attack Frigate|
Interceptors, another frigate-based class, are designed for high-speed dogfights and 'tackling' (preventing escape). Interceptors have a smaller signature radius and higher speed than regular frigates, making them difficult for larger and generally slower-tracking ships to fight. Interceptors also have a higher warp speed than other vessels, allowing them to cover the distances between stargates and other system navigation points quicker than most other ships. It is quite possible to be under attack from an Interceptor while entering warp only to find the same Interceptor waiting when the ship drops out of warp. Interceptors are primarily used for harassment and to pin down larger enemy ships until more powerful backup arrives. Two types exist for each major faction. The first type is focused on damage output with usually two bonuses to its weapon systems. The second type has bonuses to Warp Disruptor range as well as a reduction to capacitor use for Stasis Webifier and Warp Disrupter modules. This allows the interceptor to run these "tackling" modules while running a capacitor-intensive Micro Warp Drive longer than without these bonuses.
|Amarr Interceptors||Caldari Interceptors|
|Gallente Interceptors||Minmatar Interceptors|
Limited Edition FrigatesEdit
|Limited Edition Frigates|
Rare and Game Master FrigatesEdit