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A general overview of fleet communication phrases and best practices.

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EVE's golden rule: Don't fly anything you can't afford to lose.

BNI's corollary: Anything you undock will be lost.

General

Listen to your FC. Do not talk over your FC. The exception to the latter is to scream bloody murder if something unexpected happens tactically and no-one else seemed to notice. (Fleet survival trumps radio politeness.) Add your FC to your fleet watch list. Add anyone else your FC recommends to your watch list. Keep chatter to the fleet text channel, and even then you should be too busy when shit gets real to chatter there, either. Nobody cares if you still need to load ammunition, nobody cares for your inane chattering.

You add people in your fleet to the watch list by right-clicking them in the fleet member list or a chat channel list and selecting Add to Watch List from the menu. (It may be under the Fleet sub-menu depending on where you're selecting their name from.)

Keep your fleet window open at all times with the History tab active. Change your history filter to "Broadcast history" and keep an eye on that. If you can't make out or aren't participating in the voice comms, instructions should also be relayed there (targeting, alignment, etc.) and if you are running logistics, requests for shield/armour repairs come through there. Expand the lower section to get quick access to broadcast command buttons to request logi support. It is also highly recommended that you add shortcuts for these.

If you want to catch up to the fleet you just joined don't spam fleet chat or voice comms with "where y'all at?!", use the map. Switch the colour filter to "My Fleet Members" under the "My Information" group and hover your mouse over systems until you find the bulk of the fleet. Similarly, unless you're in a mission critical ship, using voice comms to announce your death is less useful than simply typing "-megathron" (etc.) into text chat.

Refer to yourself in the third person. It's hard enough to put in-game names to the voices (other than the FC) but if your TeamSpeak or Mumble username doesn't match your character name and people are using the overlay, it's even less useful. Sounds weird, but knowing who is talking is almost as important as knowing what they are talking about. Always be specific. "Hostiles at gate." is far less useful than "<Name> in <System>, <count> <enemy type, e.g. WT or ship type> at <Other System> gate." You will likely still be asked for clarification on force composition, but that can be omitted and explicitly requested to keep chatter short.

When You Hear You Should / You Are Saying
Battle comms. SHUT THE FUCK UP. AKA "clear comms", "tight comms", or "combat comms".
Check, check. SHUT THE FUCK UP, someone has a tactical update. AKA "break, break". The FC has something important to say.
Break <name>. Say this to interject important information, wait for "go" or "go break" before continuing.

Travel

DO NOT SAY JUMP. Only your FC may say the magic J word! If another fleet member says this all hell can break loose and you can be responsible for the loss of your fleet-mate's ships, so don't. Just don't. Not even for the lulz.

Generally these are broadcast by scouts traveling ahead of the fleet convoy.

When You Hear You Should / You Are Saying
Gate is red. Orbit the gate, don't jump; enemy presence on other side.
Gate is green. Jump on contact; other side of gate is clear.
Gate is clear. Orbit the gate, don't jump; the other side is clear but FC should coordinate.
Friendly in(coming). Scout returning to fleet; disregard next gate activation.
Friendly out(going). As above but in reverse.
X is plus Y. X is Y systems ahead of the fleet.
X is minus Y. X is Y systems behind the fleet.
Bombs bombs bombs! Incoming bombing run. Bombs = bad news.
Rolling safe. Warp to whoever is setting up the safe every time he gets 150KM away.

These are issued by FCs:

When You Hear You Should / You Are Saying
Hold on gate. Orbit, don't jump through the gate.
Don't lemming! As above, generally after someone has already disobeyed.
Jump on contact. As soon as you hit the gate, spam that jump button!
Jump, jump. Spam that jump button. (Obvious, included for completeness.)
Jump and hold cloak. Jump, then remain stationary and await further instructions.
Jump and align. Jump, then align to the next waypoint on the fleet route.
Return to gate. After jumping return and orbit the gate you just came through.
Align to X. Select X on the overview and align, or use the wheel or right-click menus.
Warp to X. As per align, but actually warp. May be any target, including fleet members.
Scatter! Find a random celestial in your GTFO overview tab and GTFO.
Burn to X. Make best speed to target system / celestial / station / target, etc.
Warp to optimal. Warp to your optimal combat distance, usually to the designated forward scout.

Note that "warp to" instructions often include a distance, i.e. to avoid de-cloaking a stealth scout.

Combat

General combat comms:

When You Hear You Should / You Are Saying
Weapons hot. Reduce your "safety" settings. (Dot above power grid.)
Prime your guns. With nothing locked, activate your modules and get ready to click on a target.
Cycle your guns. Turn off your offensive modules and, usually, get ready to go after another target.
Primary X, etc. Primary, secondary, tertiary indicate order of attack; first, second, third. Has several variations.
Alpha X. Bring all weapons to bear on target X. From the military term "alpha strike", "fire all weapons".
Primary by numbers. FC will broadcast targets, attack in bracket number order. A.k.a. "fire by numbers".
Free fire. Target whatever is your own best bet.
Starburst! Burn out to your extreme range and orbit enemies. Helps split up close-range enemy fleets.
Get out, get out, … Stop everything and GTFO like a red-headed stepchild.

Ewar combat comms:

When You Hear You Should / You Are Saying
Spread points. Tackle everything that moves; don't concentrate on just the primary.
Tackle X. Anyone with warp destabilizers and webs should target and "tackle" target X.
Heavy tackle… Tackle, but for ships that can take a bit of punishment.
Fast tackle… Tackle, but for ships that are speedy, but squishy.
Hero tackle… Sacrificial fast tackle heros that survive just long enough for the fleet to warp to them.
Shotgun the belts. All ships capable of tackling spread out to every belt in the system and tackle anything you find.
Point on X. Use Warp Disruptor on target X. Reply with "1 point on X" when you can confirm the disruption.
Scram on X. As above, but with Warp Scamblers. Reply with "confirm scram on X" only if successful.
Track on X. As above, but with Tracking Disruptors.
Damp on X. As above, but with Sensor Dampeners.
Paint on X. As above, but with Target Painters.
Jam on X. As above, but with ECM jammers.
Lost Y on X. Used to negate a previous confirmation.
Minus Z Y on X. As per "lost Y on X", but with Z "points" or "damp", etc. E.g. "Minus 1 point on Dominix."
Minus one X. E.g. "Minus one Dominix" - you are leaving the fleet or are otherwise unable to continue combat.

Don't jam the primary unless they are the only one left; jam the enemy support ships.

Roles

There are many roles available to fleet members, generally assigned by the FC. Examples are:

  • Scout, recon, bait: fairly obvious. Bait need to be tougher than scouts.
  • 360 Scan, dir-scan, probe scan: someone designated to search for targets and alert the fleet if someone is searching for them. Directional scan is one of the most useful tools in terms of identifying enemy composition in a system and allows you to narrow down locations in-system without needing to expose yourself by actually going there. Scouts should always be prepared to use one of the following tools to report intel:
  • Local: someone designated to watch local for war targets (WTs). Often combined with general recon.
  • Rear guard: a scout left behind a jump or two to ensure the fleet isn't being followed.

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