Learn to Fly: Kestrel
Previous Chapters: Condor / Sac / Comet / Slicer / Tristan
In this installment we'll be looking at the Caldari T1 Frigate known as the Kestrel. The Kessie (as I call it) is not as good as other Frigates and it isn't especially good at anything, but it is an awesome T1 Frigate that can take your enemy by surprise. And, at that, it is most excellent.
People tend to under-estimate this Frigate and when you are looking at trying to get these cowards to actually fight you, under-estimation is your friend. Remember that everyone else is a wussie in Eve. This is Lesson 101 stuff, but keep it in mind.
Let's take a look at some recent awesomsauce kessie kills:
Kessie Vs Comet I totally coulda solo'd this blaster Comet, but I called my friends in anyway, like a boss. Exactly like a boss when you think about it.
Kessie Vs Thrasher
Kessie Vs Executioner
Kessie Vs Another Blaster Comet
The great thing about the Kessie is how friggin' cheap it is. And the wide range of more expensive ships you call keel with it. This is so embarrassing for the bad guys. It can also be rather humiliating if you choose to go with a kiting fit. That keel could take a looong time.
RJ's Kessie Fitting Guide
Instead of sharing an actual Kessie fit (I mean really, just go look at Stay Frosty losses and copy those! Sheesh) I will tell you the main ways you can choose to fit your Frigate of Doom.
This is easy. Light Missiles in the highs, MSE or a MAS in the Mids, point, plus a MWD and one Utility slot - which is usually a TD, but can also be something else nefarious. DC, BC, or Nanos in the lows, or something like that. Rigs are also easy, plug the EM hole, use a damage rig and maybe a Shield rig. Like this maybe.
You have a grand total of about 79 dps in this thing. But if you pick the right target they cant touch you while you peck away at them for a really long time. Just about when you run out of cap is when you'll keel them, if it takes longer than that you need to skill up.
Same idea essentially, but fit for closer range and base the whole thing around a scram and a MSE/AB. Fit for more dps and hover right on the edge of OH'd scram range. This fit is so much fun. I'm going to fit one up later and go fly around in it until I get blown up.
You can also go totally against type here and base it around an armor plate in the lows with a DC. This is unexpected glory. Like this maybe.
Know Your Ship
Like I said earlier, the Kessie is not the greatest Frigate in the game. And this is its strength. It is a cheap and usually flown by younger players, which makes it a great choice for you. No one freaks out when one appears on d-scan.
Just know that the Kessie, no matter how you fit it, is extremely fragile. You need to engage with caution and with the full weight of your target selection powers engaged. Don't be stupid in it, or you will die in a fire. But also feel free to tackle crazy things with it. Why not? It is cheap.
Depends on the fit you choose, but generally speaking drone boats and heavily tanked ships can give you trouble. If you are kiting watch out for ships faster than you. That's bad news. And if you are rocket fit watch out for dual webbed tanks. Those are bad news, things like Hawks and Worms are no go.
The Kessie is a lot of fun. And comes with a lot of freedom. And danger. But, like any T1 Frigate, the rewards are potentially amazing when you finally corner that next great keel. Stick with the Kessie, she is a proud and often forgotten Frigate.