Official Description: Responsible for remotely piloting groups of the Drone fighters, Drone Anima are valued crew members aboard all Advent capital ships. The most veteran of this caste are reserved for positions aboard Halcyon Carriers; leveraging the piloting skill of these elite Psintegrat allows the ship to host a veritable swarm of strike craft. Halcyon Carriers employ a number of systems to augment the combat effectiveness of their own fighter wings, as well as those of allies.
The Halcyon is extremely versatile and useful to almost any type of fleet imaginable. Almost any Advent fleet will greatly benefit from the inclusion of a Halcyon, particularly one with maxed out (or close to maxed out) Amplify Energy Aura. Due to the entirely energy-reliant nature of the Advent's fleets, the Halcyon can benefit any vessel or combination of vessels, but it is probably most helpful when it is combined with large numbers of Illuminator Vessels, Aeria Drone Hosts, and / or Destra Crusaders.
Telekinetic Push pushes strike craft away from your ships, damaging and temporarily stunning them. If the Halcyon or its allies are swarmed by enemy strike craft, this ability keeps them from getting too close. Early on, this isn't very likely to happen, but the ability becomes important in the late game.
The Halcyon's second ability, Adept Drone Anima, passively gives the carrier extra squadrons, increasing the number of strike craft it can deploy.
The third ability, Amplify Energy Aura, allows all your energy-using ships (and structures), with the exception of fighters and bombers, to fire more shots in a shorter time interval, effectively providing a damage boost. This ability is useful for any fleet and a must-have for larger fleets. All Advent military units use exclusively energy-based weapons, but only some TEC and Vasari units do, so this ability is not very useful when supporting allies.
The Halcyon's "ultimate" ability is Anima Tempest. For a brief period of time, 60 / 75 additional drones are deployed to your squadrons of bombers and fighters, splitting themselves up equally. While this doesn't benefit directly from Adept Drone Anima (the number of drones added is independent of squadron count), it will rapidly refill depleted squadrons, as only units in excess of normal squadron sizes are lost once the ability times out.
Using the HalcyonEdit
The Halcyon is a carrier with an anti-carrier special, which hints at its role: Fighter Superiority. To be truly effective, you must have more fighters than your opponent, but the true strength lies in its bombers. A Halcyon with a few Aeria Drone Hosts and a Rapture Battlecruiser giving a 30% damage bonus can enter a gravity well and take down a starbase in a matter of seconds. Anima Tempest basically allows you to ignore fighter defenses, and with its low antimatter cost it should be used every time it cools off. If you use a Halcyon as your first ship, it may be best not to take Amplify Energy Aura at first. The effect on a small fleet is a much smaller force multiplier than starting off with 4 squadrons, which will allow you to overwhelm neutral Garda Flak Frigates and take systems faster. It's tempting to ignore Push in favor of the passives, but first scout and make sure you don't get caught facing an enemy carrier without it.
The Rapture Battlecruiser makes an excellent companion, but keep in mind if you take these two as your first and second capital ships, you'll have no Shield Regeneration and no Detonate Antimatter. It's not too hard to beat an AI without one of those abilities, but a human is another story. If you survive and rank up, Dominating enemy light carriers is an excellent way to ensure your fighter superiority for the rest of all time. Remember, the aura works as long as the Rapture is in range of the carrier, not the fighters. Only send in the capitals when you have the advantage, otherwise let them come to you.
A sound unit composition is to partner the Halcyon with the Progenitor Mothership and a flock of Illuminator Vessels. The Progenitor's Malice causes all ships affected by it to take 30% of damage assigned to any of the ships affected by it, which has strong synergy with Amplify Energy Aura: the Halcyon causes ships to fire faster, the Progenitor causes ships to (essentially) hit multiple targets with each shot, and the Illuminators happily reap the benefits.
As a final note, you can control the effect of Anima Tempest by shifting carrier roles in your fleet: if you want a fighter tempest, have your Aeria Drone Hosts hold 1 fighter and 2 bombers each, with mostly fighters in the carrier; if you want a bomber tempest have the Aeria Drone Hosts hold 2 fighters, 1 bomber and use the carrier for bombers. Your overall composition stays the same but the carrier special gets applied to one role specifically.
|Primary Role:||Squadron Support|
|Shield Power:i90||Very High|
|Weapons (Side):|| 4x Heavy Beam Cannons (Starboard / Port) /|
2 x Pulse Laser Batteries (Starboard / Port) /
Ship-to-Surface Kinetic Bolts
|Squadrons Supported:|| 2|
+1 per 2 level ups. Maximum: 8 (before ability upgrades)
Adept Drone Anima
Amplify Energy Aura