PvP Combat

Player versus Player (PvP) Combat is the gameplay of combat between players. In Open play, all forms of engagement with other CMDRs are potential PvP encounters, and thus PvP can happen anywhere and with anyone. CMDRs are not required to play in Open if they feel they are not ready to face the player interaction featured in Open play.

Table of Contents

Modes of PvP Gameplay

In Open play, there are two distinct forms of gameplay: Organic PvP and Organized PvP. Organic PvP is a free-for-all, where most groups hold to the guidelines in “Open Play Etiquette” but there are no guarantees.. Organized PvP is a bit more restrictive however, offering a more balanced approach to practicing individual skills or communicating skills with a teammate.

In most circumstances, CMDRs will engage in organic PvP in systems of high traffic or with community goals. CMDRs will meet gankers, pirates, enforcers and those who simply seek fights in those systems. The most active of these systems are Deciat, the active Community Goal system at the time, other engineering systems and Shinrarta. If there is no active Community Goal, Shinrarta will be almost as active as Deciat, frequently more so. The GALAXY page on inara.cz displays up to date information on recent “murder attempts,” detailing where more have occured recently. These systems can be assumed to be good places to find PVP encounters.

Preparation for Open Play as a Non Combatant

In Open play, running a shieldless build is inadvisable, as it often leads to swift destruction from gankers. Good practices such as good pip management, being aware of your surroundings, and knowing how to fly your ship effectively in case of an attack from a ganker can ensure a higher rate of survival in Open play. Following are some basic fundamentals to know before you warp into Open play.

Ganker Survival Training

One of the biggest challenges facing Open play is dealing with gankers. Frontier Developments have made it clear that ganking is a legitimate form of gameplay in Elite Dangerous Open. As such it is advisable for all CMDRs flying in Open to be prepared accordingly.

First, some fundamentals to understand:

Things you should be doing to escape a gank attack:

Here is an example of escaping from a gank with an A-rated Cobra Mk 3.

Things to not do during a gank:

If you need more resources to survive a gank, our NEWP mentor team can help set up a one-on-one or group event that allows you to practice gank evasion. In addition, the Gank Evasion Academy would be another great place to learn, practice and perfect gank evading.

Open Play Etiquette

In open play, there are some etiquette to follow, some of these are important for all as it provides player integrity within the community of PvP and sustainability to open servers for all to use in the long term.

    Combat logging is the action of exiting the game session midst fight against another CMDR, this includes menu logging - the act of exiting a combat engagement via main menu, and includes soft logging - the act of logging out before engagement with another CMDR.

    Although menu logging is not enforced by the game developers of Elite Dangerous, it is a method of providing accountability to the integrity of all PvP players and PvP engagements in Elite Dangerous. The integrity describes that all players should fight fairly and most Elite Dangerous communities do enforce this rule.

    Should you find yourself in an unfortunate position where the game crashes or should you experience a loss of power, contact the person you last engaged with. Provide a reason and offer another chance of engagement to show that you are upholding your integrity.

  2. Open play is Free-For-All
    Open play is a free-for-all session. All PvP engagements are consensual and therefore anyone can engage in PvP combat. If you feel you are unready to try out open play, many communities offer private sessions where you can connect to and meet other players.

  3. Adhere to PvP Etiquette
    If the fight is organized and not organic, the PvP community advises on following some combat etiquette. This is to ensure sustainability and integrity of its PvP players to not use exploits and cheats so that fights are fair between all players and their ships.

    The following are banned in organized PVP events and frowned upon by most player groups in organic:

    • Do not use ship launched fighters as it induces instance lagging. (Maybe Fixed in Odyssey since May 20, 2021)
    • Use of weapons with shield regenerative capability effects are banned (regenerative / concordance sequence).
    • Do not use premium synthesis.
    • Do not turn “Report Crimes Against Me” ON during PvP engagements.
    • Do not abuse reverski tactics (firing while reversing away from the opponent, running out of the opponent’s range to regenerate shields, or “full-reverski,” actively holding reverse thrust while firing).
    • Fight to the death, it is bad form to wake out of an organic fight that you initiate, but this is not a guideline that matters as much as the others.
    • Do not wake out of an organized fight.

    It is also expected that commanders that fought in organized PvP fights should uphold the PvP etiquette in organic PvP engagements.

  4. Do Not Block Other Players
    Elite Dangerous’ instancing algorithms try to respect blocked players. In the process, blocking players can cause massive fragmentation of instances which makes Open play emptier and harder for players to matchmake with each other, resulting in endless blue tunnels. Blocking players for fair PvP encounters is frowned upon, however blocking for harassment and cheating reasons are fair judgement.

  5. Maintaining PvP Etiquette

    For all those who fought in the PvP Community or are considering joining the PvP community, are expected to maintain PvP etiquette when fighting to ensure integrity, fairness, and sustainability. This is to ensure the quality of the fights players engage reflects the nature of pilot skills and not their ship’s advantages.

The meta ship for PvPis the prismatic Fer-De-Lance. It is the most versatile fighter and the most appropriate in the widest array of situations. There is absolute FDL dominance in wing fights and fights in asteroid fields. In 1v1's, the FDL will not outperform well specced/flown large ships or effective counter builds. The META FDL with plasmas and rails is the most educational ship for new players to fly, and one of the most difficult builds to master.

Other good ships for 1v1s include the Chieftain and Python.

You can check out the list of builds here.

Wing Fights

PvP wing fights can happen in organic and organized environments, although the organic ones are often more disordered as there is often a bias to the fights. In both circumstances, the fight ends when one side overwhelms the other side.

Community Resources

CMDR L’Intouchable of NATO has kindly put together a combat guide for PvP.

CMDR Jazod of PRISM produced a video explaining the Meta Fer-De-Lance build.

Another highly recommended resource is to check out the Galactic Combat Initiative Discord Server. The Galactic Combat Initiative server hosts the most knowledgeable minds in the PVP community and helps players of all levels to get better.

The PvP community establishes seasonal championships in the PvP League, whereby wings from different squadrons can take on other wings from other squadrons. In order to compete, wings must follow a strict set of rules for each season.

If you wish to practice more PvP, whether be solo or in wing fights, please feel free to check out the PvP Hub to matchmake with other CMDRs for winged fights and 1v1’s.