Ships from the Deluxe Edition and Operation Dry Dock
BPV: 216 / 5 Crew
Well, it's a Beta what more needs to be said? Seriously, only its Blatguns can reach a range greater than 10 hexes, so if you have a ship with a long range powerful gun like a Turbo Laser, or Railrepeator, you could hang back twenty hexes and fire away. The drive is only 7, so the Beta is not going to chase you down. Its point-defense is excellent (1-7), but a large wave (10+) of torpedoes should break through and do a serious amount of damage. If you can get the Beta within 10 hexes of any ship though Plazguns, missiles, and particle weapons will ensure a crippled or destroyed ship. Watch out for a lot of ships performing hit and run attacks. Concentrate on one ship at a time until it is crippled then switch targets.
BPV: 218 / 6 Crew
The same tactics that apply to the Betafortress apply to the Alpha. The additional crewmember and his rear firing Disruptorgun is generally useless as few ships will be behind the Alpha at a range of 6. If given a choice, the normal Betafortress is more cost effective than the Alpha.
BPV: 220 / 6 Crew
As with the Alpha, the Beta uses the same tactics as the normal Betafortress. The addition of the rear twin Splatterguns is more effective than the single Disruptorgun of the Alpha and adds some significant defense to the Beta's slightly weaker rear arc. Basically fly the Beta into the middle of a fight and start knocking ships out of the sky (or space as the case may be).
BPV: 19 / 1 Crew
The Blizzard is a cheap attrition fighter. It has a high Drive(18), but only an average Defensive Value(14). Its only cannon is a Disruptorgun, meaning that the Blizzard needs to be in close in order to hit its target. It does carry 4 Mk. 10 torps though, which do redeem the ship. It should be held out of the fight until the enemy ships have been damaged some. Then the Blizzard should streak in, hopefully in a firing arc where they can't be hit, blast away with the Disruptorgun and unload all its torps. Next turn, the Blizzard should fly outside the battle area and wait to nibble at the remaining ships. Don't forget the Disruptorguns ability to ignore DR. If a Blizzard can sneak up to a heavily armored ship like a Shyrak Shuttle or Teal Hawk, it can strip away some of its armor with but a single hit.
BPV: 18 / 1 Crew
Replacing the Disruptorgun with a Splattergun makes this fighter much more attractive. It still retains its torpedo load and high speed, so you can use it in much the same method as the normal Blizzard. The extra four hexes of gun range mean that you should have 20% more chances to fire than in a regular Blizzard.
BPV: 21 / 1 Crew
The Dart is the hot-rod of Silent Death. It has a 19 Drive, enabling it to cross the entire board in around two turns. Its high Defensive Value means that it will stick around a lot longer than most attrition fighters. It also gives the pilot the choice between 2 Pulse Lasers and a single Minigun when firing. The most difficult choice in flying a Dart is when to use which weapon. The Pulse Lasers should be used when the +1 to-hit and damage is helpful, or when a target is within 9 hexes. The double damage possibility from the Minigun is nice, but never happens when you truly need it. Given the Minigun's range of 12 hexes, it is easy for the Dart to stay in the 11 to 12 hex range of a target and pepper it with shots, but only attempt this if your Pilot's Gunner skill is high, at least high enough to roll a D8. Finally, the Dart has a long damage track for its size, allowing it to remain in a fight longer than most attrition fighters.
BPV: 20 / 1 Crew
The Dart II replaces the twin Pulse Laser with two more Miniguns. It also reduces the point defense by one to 1-5, but the Dart can easily outrun any torpedo fired at it, so this is not a great loss. The triple Miniguns give a +2 to-hit and damage, providing a decent punch from such a small fighter. Of course, it only has enough ammo for six bursts, so be sure to have a high Gunnery skill otherwise the Dart II will be fleeing the area quickly, chased by undamaged and lightly damaged ships. Use the Minigun's longer range to your advantage.
BPV: 60 / 2 Crew
Besides having a cool-looking miniature, the Death Wind is armed with the all-time favorite cannon of all SD players: the Ion Ram. The rear mounted twin Splatterguns keep most ships off your tail, allowing you to concentrate on your primary target. The Death Wind's Defensive Value is kind of low (13) allowing Lasers to hit you fairly easily, but the Damage Reduction of four shrugs off all but the most damaging attacks. The only problem with the Death Wind is its Damage Track. There is a critical hit on the 6th box and an opponent selected weapon hit in the 9th box which is always the Ion Ram. Bring the Death Wind in immediately towards its target, drop the four Mk. 20 torps, blast away with the Ion Ram and then turn away, possibly discouraging retreat with the Splatterguns. If the Death Wind survives intact, then flit around the perimeter of the battle, using the Ion Ram's 15 hex range to damage medium and large fighters. The Minigun is generally only used when the Ion Ram is knocked out, and then only for defense. It does have a lot of ammo though, so fire it freely.
Death Wind II
BPV: 64 / 2 Crew
The Minigun is replaced with a twenty-five shot Missile Launcher, providing a very powerful first-strike capability with the Death Wind. It still retains its early critical and weapon hit, but the damage a full 10 missile strike can deliver is impressive. Use the Death Wind II as you would a Death Wind, but after its initial strike, keep diving in until the Missile Launcher is empty.
BPV: 121 / 5 Crew
The Drakar is best used as a Warhound or Gunboat attacker. It has very poor defense, and a low Drive so your best bet is to move to within 15 hexes of your target and fire the Railrepeator and Heavy Plazgun at the slow moving targets. This ship needs some fighter protection or it will quickly be lost.
BPV: 125 / 5 Crew
An increased missile load and the addition of a Protobolt Projector give the Drakar Alpha a more flexible use. The loss of the Railrepeator is not terrible as the Protobolt Projector fills its role better anyway. While the Alpha is better able to defend itself, you still want to keep it on the fringe of the battle and snipe at any ship within its firing arc. Use full missile strikes against any ship foolish enough to come within 10 hexes.
BPV:119 / 4 Crew
A light gunboat with a heavy weapon load, I consider the Epping to be the ultimate Silent Death flyswatter. With three 30-shot missile launchers each with 360° arcs, the Epping can cripple a wing of light fighters. With a Drive of 11, the Epping should be able to maneuver around the forward arc its targets and slap some missiles on them. Its is vulnerable to larger fighters and other gunboats, so watch out. Also it runs out of missiles after three turns, so try to destroy as much as you can during that time (duh).
BPV: 78 / 4 Crew
Its like the Epping, only weaker. Single Pulse Laser mounts, ten less missiles per launcher, a pitifully low DV, and lower DR all seriously compromise the Epping Prime's lasting power. It is 41 points cheaper, but I feel in this case you definitely get what you pay for. It would be far better to grab a Death Wind or a pair of Night Hawks.
BPV: 106 / 2 Crew
The Glaive is an excellent heavy fighter. It is easy to hit, but it has strong armor and a good Drive(12). Its weapon choices are great with the power of a Plazgun and the range of a Protobolt Projector combined with two 20 shot missile launchers and 3 Mk. 40 torps. While both missile launchers cannot target the same ship, their 360° firing arcs provide ample targets. On the trip to the battle, use the Protobolt Projector to score some early damage, and then wade into the middle of the fight, using the rest of the Glaive's weapons to damage anything it their path. Once the missile launcher's are empty, move along the edges of the fight and Plazgun anything still moving.
BPV: 107 / 2 Crew
With an Ion Ram in place of the Glaive's Plazgun, the Glaive II has a greater long range attack ability. Use the missile launchers to prevent attacking ships from getting too close and let fly with Protobolts and the Ion Ram.
BPV: 32 / 1 Crew
The Hell Bender is an excellent medium fighter to choose when you are not sure what you are going up against. It has weapons for all types of ships, including the long-ranged Autocannon and two Mk 30 torpedoes. The Pulse Lasers are usually the most often used weapon, although fire the Meld Laser as often as you can. If going against slower fighters, be certain to hang around the 18 hex range and blast away with the Meld Laser, or if the target is easy to hit and slow enough, the Autocannon. While the Damage Reduction of the Hell Bender is high(4), its Defensive Value is low(12). Always be aware of the critical on the fourth hit. It can quickly take the Bender out of the fight.
Hell Bender II
BPV: 35 / 1 Crew
The Hell Bender is a flexible ship, but more tuned towards attacking slower, larger craft. The Hell Bender II is equipped to tackle any ship, from the small attrition fighter, up to the smaller gunboats. It replaces the Pulse Lasers with an Impulsegun for the primary weapon and removes the Autocannon in exchange for a 20 shot Missile Launcher. Fly the Hell Bender II to within 10 hexes and let the missiles and Impulsegun do their job. The critical hit on the fourth box of the Damage Track still provides a serious vulnerability.
BPV: 27 / 1 Crew
Like most people, I view the Kosmos as a two-strike fighter. After launching two missile salvos, its time to send it home. The Minigun has only six shots and is fairly inaccurate to make up for its potential to double damage and increased range. If you need a cheap missile platform, choose the Kosmos otherwise look somewhere else.
BPV: 29 / 1 Crew
By removing the Minigun and replacing it with a Disruptorgun you are trading range for lack of ammo concerns. You still have a high Drive and the missile launcher, so its as effective as the standard Kosmos, only it needs to get closer. It really depends on what you plan on doing with the ship as to which Kosmos to select.
BPV: 60 / 2 Crew
Another really cool looking ship, the Lance Electra is designed to stay 12 hexes away from its target and let loose with the twin Protobolt Projectors. Remember you can fire two shots from each Projector, allowing a potential of 24 points of damage to be done at medium range. Unfortunately, one the Protobolts are gone, the Lance Electra is not very useful. If you consider this a strike fighter, it will operate fine. For the same point cost though, you could buy a Death Wind which is more effective. However, if you need a few turns of long range attack, the Lance Electra fills that role nicely. The Pulse Laser and Missile Launcher are used for defense as the ship has a low Defensive Value and Drive.
Lance Electra II
BPV: 60 / 2 Crew
An Impulse gun replaces one Protobolt Projector, allowing the Lance Electra II to stay in the battle longer. Use the one Protobolt Projector for three turns at medium range, then push the Lance Electra II into the battle, using the Missile Launcher, Pulse Laser, and Impulsegun to target one fighter at a time.
BPV: 47 / 1 Crew
6 Splatterguns make an impressive ship. The Night Hawk is purely an interceptor. It has a high Drive and Damage Reduction, plus the powerful Splatterguns. A guarantee of at least 12 points of damage on even a low to-hit roll makes the Night Hawk an excellent choice to down a particularly troublesome fighter. Since the 6 Splatterguns have a +5 to-hit, you may wish to lower your Gunner skill to the middle range as the average roll on 3D6 is a 10 (yielding at least a 15). The Meld Laser is useful if you need to get a few long range attacks in before diving towards your target. Beware of the critical hit on the 5th box.
Night Hawk II
BPV: 55 / 1 Crew
The Night Hawk II removes the Meld Laser and increases the Point Defense from 1-3 to 1-5. This version is only really useful against light fighters with heavy torp loads like Thunderbirds and Blizzards, although a full torpedo strike by these fighters is likely to overload the Night Hawk II's Point Defense. Otherwise, this ship is identical to its brother.
BPV: 120 / 3 Crew
The Pharsii II is an average heavy fighter. Its powerful Turbo Laser is designed to hang 25 hexes back and slam into a gunboat or other equally slow target. The quad Splatterguns and Missile Launcher are sufficient to destroy any fighters that break off to attack the Pharsii II. The Pharsii II has no weapons covering its RQR and RQL quadrant, which is unusual for a heavy fighter. Plus it carries three crew members which is one more skill you must purchase. Depending on the mission's goal, a Glaive may be a cheaper and more effective alternative. The torpedo load of the Pharsii II is laughable, being used for harassment more than attack.
BPV: 110 / 4 Crew
The Pharsii is one point faster and one point harder to hit than the Pharsii II. These are the only good features of it though. It carries an extra crew man and seriously down-graded firepower resulting in a ship whose only real use is sniping at slow ships with the Turbo Laser.
BPV: 12 / 1 Crew
One of the cheapest fighter in the game, the Pit Viper is best used in large groups. It carries 3 Pulse Lasers giving it a needed bonus to both to-hit and damage, it also is very fast and hard to hit. It's Damage Reduction of 2 is actually high for such a small fighter giving it the ability to usually survive one hit. After that though, it's dust. Use it like a piranha: move in, take a nibble, move away, and repeat.
Pit Viper T
BPV: 8 / 1 Crew
A Pit Viper T has only one Pulse Laser and no Damage Reduction. Its only use is to hopefully be blown up in front of an oncoming ship and pray that its debris will cause some damage. At only 8 points, you could by a ton of them with Pilot and Gunner skills of 1 each.
BPV: 120 / 2 Crew
The Revenge is perhaps the easiest ship to use correctly. Point it towards its target, drop all its torps and go home. Generally two strikes of 5 torps each should cause enough damage to cripple or destroy the toughest of gunboats and fighters. Don't bother trying to use the missile launchers. If something is in your way use them, otherwise concentrate on your primary target. Be prepared to lose two or three torpedoes as you approach your target. By the way, if you can load its torpedoes with missile warheads, the Revenge becomes a powerful standoff fighter.
BPV: 120 / 2 Crew
The Revenge II is exactly like its brother with one less Missile Launcher, but a whole lot more missiles. This allows the Revenge II to either defend itself better or stick around after its torpedoes have been fired. Armed with missile torpedoes, the Revenge II becomes a brutal Hatchling killer.
BPV: 66 / 2 Crew
Probably the most well rounded fighter in the galaxy. It combines a flexible weapon layout with a decent torpedo layout, good speed, and decent armor. Its shielding is minimal though, so the Salamander is easy to hit. Use the Salamander to fly through enemy formations, firing its forward and rear weapons to damage all ships around it. Hopefully, the Salamander will disrupt the formation enough to pick off the individual fighters in quick dogfights. Its high Point Defense (1-7) allows it to destroy incoming volleys of one or two torpedoes without having to worry about dodging.
BPV: 66 / 2 Crew
The Salamander II is almost identical with the Salamander. The only difference is the single 360° Pulse Laser is replaced with a triple Pulse Laser mount firing F, FQL, and FQR. This ship eliminates the redundancy of the Pulse Laser firing rear when the Gunner would be better off firing the Splatterguns. The only downside is when the Splatterguns are destroyed, the Salamander II loses any rear defense. Choose your Salamander based on how much damage you expect to receive.
BPV: 80 / 3 Crew
The Sentry is an excellent defender of a fixed area, but is a dismal fighter otherwise. It is slow and pitifully easy to hit. It does have high Damage Reduction, so it can survive those needling Miniguns and Pulse Lasers. Its rear arc is vulnerable and it has no torpedo or missile capacity. It's front firing arc is devastating though, especially if a slower moving target is there. If you have an outpost that needs defending, use a Sentry, otherwise leave it at home.
BPV: 80 / 3 Crew
The Sentry II's only difference is the removal of the Blatguns and replacing them with a Disintegrator. This does nothing to increase its combat uses, and changes the tactics of the Sentry II little. If you can hit with the Disintegrator, do so, but of course, you might as well fire every weapon you can every turn.
BPV: 121 / 2 Crew
Another well-rounded heavy fighter, the Seraph is a little under-gunned for its size. It carries the powerful Turbo Laser, allowing it to attack slow ships from obscene ranges. The rest of the weapons are Pulse Lasers scattered around the ship, including a vestigial one firing to the rear, an area covered by a quad Pulse Laser mount. A 20 shot Missile Launcher and four Mk 10 torps are available to smack a medium attacking force. Finally, the Seraph carries an ace-in-the-hole: one Mk 50 torpedo. This is an excellent last minute surprise for the Seraph pilot to unleash. It has a very high Drive for its size(15) and a high DR (4). Depending on the available targets, the Seraph should hang around the fringe, or dive into the middle of the fray.
BPV: 121 / 2 Crew
The Seraph II replaces the vestigial Pulse Laser with a Disruptorgun and replaces the Turbo Laser with 2 Meld Lasers allowing it to dogfight much better. It can take an impressive amount of damage and still keep flying, so use it to smack any thing that is unlucky enough to get in its way.
BPV: 34 / 2 Crew
It's slow and easily hit, but that Damage Reduction of 5 is incredible. The Missile Launcher is nice, but is gone after one volley. The quad Pulse Lasers provide a decent ability to deal damage, and the ship itself is impervious to most Low damaging weapons. It is difficult to move it into a particular position, but if you need to make it from point A to point B, the Shyrak should get you there relatively unharmed.
Shyrak Shuttle II
BPV: 34 / 2 Crew
This is a great ship. Its Drive is a respectable 12, it keeps the 5 Damage Reduction and replaces the quad Pulse Lasers with a 360° Impulsegun. Plus, the Point Defense is an unbelievable 1-6. While the original Shyrak Shuttle was resilient, the Shyrak Shuttle II is almost invulnerable.
BPV: 68 / 2 Crew
The Sorenson III is a good attack vessel against slower targets, but due to its exclusive Blatgun armament, a small force of fast ships could easily destroy it. It has decent Drive, Damage Reduction, and Defensive Value. It also has a respectable torpedo load, allowing it to perform as a strike fighter.
BPV: 47 / 2 Crew
Although the Sorenson II has a weapon that can track any speed target, it is only a single Pulse Laser and it only fires in the R, RQL, and RQR arcs. The Sorenson II should be used as a strike fighter and leave the dogfighting and intercepting to ships better designed for it.
BPV: 18 / 1 Crew
The Spirit Rider is one of the best small fighters available. It has a good Drive and Defensive Value and even more impressive for a ship of its size, it has a Damage Reduction of 3. The twin Mk 10 torps provide excellent torpedo defense, especially if the torpedoes are targeting another ship. The twin Splatterguns provide a devastating punch to any similar cost fighters it encounters. Use the Spirit Rider as an escort to larger and slower fighters, swatting any incoming attrition fighters like flies.
Spirit Rider II
BPV: 17 / 1 Crew
Replacing the two Mk 10 torps with one Mk 20 limits the usefulness of this fighter somewhat, but it does allow the Drive to be increased by one. Still the regular Spirit Rider only costs one point more; it is an effective point. Otherwise, use the Spirit Rider II exactly as the Spirit Rider.
BPV: 125 / 4 Crew
The Star Raven is an interesting gunboat as it is not effective against other gunboats, but can chew small and medium fighters up. While it is not as effective as the Epping in clearing out formations of light fighters, it can punch a hole inside one. Forget using the Disintegrator unless you are going up against a Shyrak Shuttle, which the Star Raven eats up like candy. The Meld Lasers can make tougher fighters keep their distance and the five torpedoes can force smaller gunboats or heavy fighters to retreat. But don't let those armaments fool you, the Star Raven cannot take on a Drakar or a Betafortress.
Star Raven Alpha
BPV: 128 / 4 Crew
The Star Raven Alpha is designed to strip away armor from any heavily armed, relatively slow target. Once the three Disintegrators have stripped the armor away, let the attack fighters fly in and destroy the target, again, the Star Raven Alpha cannot engage a gunboat in a head-to-head fight and expect to win.
BPV: 33 / 1 Crew
The Talon is another really cool looking ship. Its one Mk 10 torpedo is useless, but the twin Pulse Lasers and twin Disruptorguns provide good armament. Good Drive, Defensive Value, and Damage Reduction allow the Talon to wade into any dogfight and punch strongly.
BPV: 38 / 1 Crew
As good as a dogfighter the Talon is the Talon II is even better. It has the same armament, but better Drive and Defensive Value as well as a useful torpedo load. The Damage Reduction drops down to 2, but with the increased Defensive Value fear not, the Talon II will not be hit as much. Use this to attack any light or medium fighter in your way.
BPV: 43 / 2 Crew
The Teal Hawk is a great hit and run fighter. Its very high Drive and Damage Reduction allow it to streak into a fight and finish off a limping ship. The twin Blatguns require a slower target, so the Teal Hawk rarely leads the attack, but any ship trying to sneak home will quickly find the Teal Hawk saddling up beside it. The one torpedo does not do much, but try to time its impact at the same time as another torpedo strike. Since there is only one weapon mount, keep the Pilot's Gunner skill low and let the Gunner do the shooting.
Teal Hawk II
BPV: 47 / 2 Crew
All of the advantages of the Teal Hawk with an even higher Defensive Value and four Mk 10 torps. If you have the extra four points, buy a Teal Hawk II instead of a Teal Hawk. Use it identically to the Teal Hawk, with the added flexibility of the torpedo load.
BPV: 25 / 1 Crew
The Thunderbird has two great features for a light fighter. It carries five torpedoes and four Pulse Lasers. The +3 on the to-hit allows the Pilot's Gunner skill to be lower and still allow the a decent chance to connect. The high Drive and Defensive Value are typical of the smaller fighters in the galaxy. Fly the T-bird near the conflict, drop all your torps and then shoot down any small ship that comes near you.
BPV: 25 / 1 Crew
Replacing the Pulse Lasers with Miniguns limits the usefulness of the Thunderbird II, although the added missile launcher provides a helpful punch. If you find yourself flying the Thunderbird II, fire your missiles and torpedoes as soon as possible and then fly around until a point-blank Minigun shot avails itself.