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Launchers are one of the three weapons systems of EVE, and primary weapon system of many Caldari ships, however, other races' ships can be found with launcher hard-points and hull bonuses. Missiles have distinct mechanics and skills from turrets or drones. Launchers only fire their respective class of missiles (rocket launchers only fire rockets) which do a single type of damage per warhead to a target.

Missiles are very versatile weapons, but it is important to understand the trade off between guns and missiles in terms of benefits and drawbacks. First, it is important to understand the missile damage is typically much more constant than damage from guns. A missile will do the same damage if the target is right next to you or at the very limits of your missile range. Due to this quality, missiles are favored by ratters since you don't have to run down rats that likes to stay at range 50km away. Since missile turrets do not use capacitor at all, energy neutralizers won't stop you from continuing to attack when you have no energy to run anything else.

The factors affecting a gun's damage are range, transversal velocity, and ship signature. For missiles, the factors are the ship's speed and signature radius. The speed and signature of a ship are generally constant, though some ships will pulse their MWDs on and off to change their speed.

With guns, the range and transversal are likely to change wildly as the ships maneuver in space. You're not going to have the same wrecking hits or nearly total misses as you have with guns. If your missile connects, chances are the damage done will be the same each time.

The other major difference with missiles is that they are not instant connect weapons. They have a flight time. This is really the biggest drawback of the weapon, as the target that you fired on may or may not still be around by the time your missiles catch up to him. If the ship doesn't warp off, blow up, or get out of range, you will eventually hit him, with the exception of very high speed ships.

The drawback with missiles is in cases where they experience long flight times. Typically you will see this most with cruise missiles where flight times can vary between 20 and 40 seconds with skills. Since the fleet is focus firing a single primary target, it will usually blow up inside of 15 seconds. For this reason, battleships using missiles are typically seen as unworthy in fleet battles. While it is possible to target another ship, you probably won't do much damage to him alone, and he has much more time to escape.

Missile Launchers

Missile launchers are offensive weapons that is used obviously fire missiles. All races has some ships that uses missiles. The most well known ones are the stealth bombers using torpedoes and bombs. Generally speaking, try to fit Tech II (T2) launchers if you plan on focusing on this damage type.

Meta Types for launchers:

  • Meta 1 - Malkuth
  • Meta 2 - Limos
  • Meta 3 - xx-yyyy (x = letters, y = numbers)
  • Meta 4 - Arbalest

Missile Varieties

Generally, what missiles you are going to be firing depends on your ship and your typical target ships. Frigates start with either rockets (short range, fast firing) or light missiles (medium range, slow firing). Cruisers use either heavy missiles (longer range) or heavy assault missiles (shorter range, higher damage), or may fit light missiles in assault launchers to attack fast frigates.

Battleships fit either torpedoes or cruise missiles. Torpedoes hit harder and work best against battleship size targets. Cruise missiles are lower damage, but are faster and have more range than torpedoes, and work somewhat better against smaller targets.

Citadel torpedoes can only be fitted by dreadnoughts and are generally only used against POS targets and other capital ships.

Each missile type has two Tech II variants. Rockets, heavy assault missiles, and torpedoes have a long-range variant, and an anti-ship variant (higher damage, but optimized for bigger targets). Light, heavy, and cruise missiles have a high-damage variant, and a high-precision variant that is better against smaller targets.

There are also auto-targeting “FoF” missiles of each size, that automatically fire (without needing a target lock) on any ship attacking you. A “Defender” missile (that fits in all launcher types) can be fired to destroy incoming enemy missiles.

A missile will always hit if it is fired in range of the target (though the damage dealt may vary, see “Calculating damage”, below). The range is calculated from the missiles velocity, times the missiles maximum flight time. Boosting either of these parameters (with skills, modules, or bonuses) will increase the missile's range.

Each missile type comes in four variants, one for each damage type (EM/Explosive/Kinetic/Thermal) in the game. Unlike turret ammunition, missiles always deal 100% of their damage as a single type.

Missile damage and rof can be boosted by the use of one or more Ballistic Control Systems.


  • Damage - base damage dealt. The damage type depends on the sub-type of missile. Affected by the relevant missile skill and by the Warhead Upgrades skill.
    • Rockets - Dependent upon the Rockets skill.
    • Heavy Assault Missiles - Dependent upon the Heavy Assault Missiles skill.
    • Light Missiles - Dependent upon the Light Missiles skill.
    • Heavy Missiles - Dependent upon the Heavy Missiles skill.
    • Cruise Missiles - Dependent upon the Cruise Missiles skill.
    • Torpedoes - Dependent upon the Torpedoes skill.
  • Velocity - the missile's in-flight velocity. Affected by the Missile Projection skill. In general, it's preferable to increase this instead of increasing flight time, since having missiles move faster means that you can hit faster-moving targets.
  • Flight time - the missile's maximum flight time. Affected by the Missile Bombardment skill.
  • Range - the missile's base range, from (velocity) x (flight time).
  • Explosion velocity - the velocity of the missile's explosion, this is weighted against your targeted ship's velocity as shown in the Calculating missile damage section below. Affected by the Target Navigation Prediction skill.
  • Explosion radius - the radius of the missile's explosion, this is weighted against your targeted ship's signature radius as shown in the Calculating missile damage section below. Affected by the Guided Missile Precision skill.
  • Rate of Fire - delay (in seconds) between missile launches. Rate of Fire is increased with higher meta-level launchers. Also using T2 launchers grants an additional Rate of Fire increase based on the relevant specialization skill. Affected by the Rapid Launch skill.
  • DPS - Base damage per second, calculated from (damage) / (rate of fire).

Missile types

Javelin, Rage, Precision, and Fury missiles are Tech II missiles that can only be loaded in Tech II launchers. For PvP usage, examining faction missiles is highly recommended, Caldari Navy missiles can be easily purchased in Jita and deal 15% more damage than regular Tech I and are relatively affordable.

Auto-Targeting missiles automatically pick a target, making them somewhat useful when jammed, but deal -25% less damage than their targeted variants.

Firing times on the chart below are for T2 launchers. T1 launchers have a reduced rate of fire.


NameDamageVelocityFlight timeRangeExp. velocityExp. radiusRate of FireDPS
Rocket332250 m/s2 s4.5 km150 m/s20 m4 s8.2
Javelin Rocket29.73375 m/s2 s6.75 km150 m/s20 m4 s7.4
Rage Rocket44.61875 m/s2 s 3.75 km129 m/s34 m4 s11.1
Light Missile833750 m/s5 s18.75 km170 m/s40 m12 s (9.6 s*)6.9 (8.6*)
Auto-Targeting Light Missile623750 m/s5 s18.75 km170 m/s40 m12 s (9.6 s*)5.1 (6.4*)
Precision Light Missile833750 m/s2.5 s9.375 km204 m/s25 m12 s (9.6 s*)6.9 (8.6*)
Fury Light Missile1163750 m/s3.75 s14 km143 m/s69 m12 s (9.6 s*)9.6 (12*)
Heavy Assault Missile1002250 m/s4 s9 km101 m/s125 m6.4 s15.625
Javelin Heavy Assault Missile903375 m/s4 s13.5 km101 m/s125 m6.4 s13.3
Rage Heavy Assault Missile1351875 m/s4.3 s8 km87 m/s215 m6.4 s21
Heavy Missile1354300 m/s6.5 s28 km81 m/s140 m12 s11.2
Auto-Targeting Heavy Missile1024300 m/s6.5 s28 km81 m/s140 m12 s8.5
Precision Heavy Missile1354300 m/s3.25 s14 km97 m/s125 m12 s11.2
Fury Heavy Missile1824300 m/s4.88 s21 km68 m/s241 m12 s15.1
Cruise Missile3003750 m/s20 s75 km69 m/s300 m17.6 s17
Auto-Targeting Cruise Missile2253750 m/s20 s75 km69 m/s300 m17.6 s12.8
Precision Cruise Missile3003750 m/s10 s37.5 km83 m/s270 m17.6 s17.0
Fury Cruise Missile4203750 m/s15 s41.2 km58 m/s516 m17.6 s23.8
Torpedo4501500 m/s6 s9 km71 m/s450 m14.4 s31.2
Javelin Torpedo4052250 m/s6 s13.5 km71 m/s450 m14.4 s28.1
Rage Torpedo6081250 m/s6 s7.5 km61 m/s774 m14.4 s42.2
Citadel Cruise Missile 15004250 m/s20 s85 km29 m/s1750 m44 s34.1
Citadel Torpedo 20001750 m/s15 s26.2 km20 m/s2000 m26 s58.8

* When fired from Rapid Light Missile Launcher

Damage types

Missile names ofeach damage typeDamage
Heavy Assault MissilesMjolnirNovaScourgeInferno
Light MissilesMjolnirNovaScourgeInferno
Heavy MissilesMjolnirNovaScourgeInferno
Cruise MissilesMjolnirNovaScourgeInferno
Citadel Cruise MissilesMjolnirNovaScourgeInferno
Citadel TorpedoesMjolnirNovaScourgeInferno
Auto-Targeting LightMjolnirNovaScourgeInferno
Auto-Targeting HeavyMjolnirNovaScourgeInferno
Auto-Targeting CruiseMjolnirNovaScourgeInferno

Each missile graphic has some kind of color stripe, fin, or fuselage that indicates the type of damage that it will deal.

Cyan generally indicates that the weapon will deal EM-type damage. This is usually most effective on shield-tanking ships

Yellow is explosive damage

Grey or Green indicate kinetic damage.

Red is Thermal damage

Calculating missile damage

The damage done by missiles is complex to calculate. Because missiles always hit the target (if in range), the game is designed so that huge missiles won't be able to insta-pop small fast frigates.

The calculation depends on six parameters:

  • The base damage of the missile (D)
  • The explosion velocity of the missile (vE)
  • The explosion radius of the missile (R)
  • The velocity of the target (v)
  • The signature radius of the target (S)
  • The damage reduction factor for the missile (DRF)

The base damage, explosion velocity, and explosion radius for each missile are given in the tables above. The signature radius of the target is related to its size and type. It varies from about 40 m for frigates to about 125 m for cruisers, and 400 m for battleships.

The complete formula is:

Damage = D * MIN(1, S/R, (vE/v * S/R)^(log(DRF) / log(5.5)) )

DRF is a value based on missile type which is visible on the charge info page:

  • Rocket = 3.0
  • Light Missile = 2.8
  • Heavy Assault Missile = 4.5
  • Heavy Missile = 3.2
  • Torpedo = 5.0
  • Cruise Missile = 4.5
  • Citadel Torpedo = 5.5
  • Citadel Cruise Missile = 4.5

The log(DRF) / log(5.5) portion then can be resolved as:

  • Rocket = 0.644
  • Light Missile = 0.604
  • Heavy Assault Missile = 0.8823
  • Heavy Missile = 0.6823
  • Torpedo = 0.9441
  • Cruise Missile = 0.8823
  • Citadel Torpedo = 1.0
  • Citadel Cruise Missile = 0.8823

Two important things to note about the damage formula are that you can never deal full damage to a target with a smaller signature radius than the missile explosion radius, and increasing your signature radius by some factor is equivalent to decreasing your velocity by the same factor. The latter factor makes it nearly impossible to use Microwarpdrives to mitigate missile damage except with interceptors.

Basic skills

  • Missile Launcher Operation (MLO)

This is the basic missile skill, required for all other skills. 2% bonus to missile rate of fire per level.

  • Rockets

Skill for fitting rockets. Requires MLO I. 5% bonus to rocket damage per level.

  • Heavy Assault Missiles

Skill for heavy assault missiles. Requires MLO III & Light Missiles III. 5% bonus to heavy assault missile damage per level.

  • Light Missiles

Skill for light missiles. Requires MLO II. 5% bonus to light missile damage per level.

  • Heavy Missiles

Skill for heavy missiles. Requires MLO III & Light Missiles III. 5% bonus to heavy missile damage per level.

  • Cruise Missiles

Skill for cruise missiles. Requres MLO V & Heavy Missiles III. 5% bonus to cruise missile damage per level.

  • Torpedoes

Skill for torpedoes. Requires MLO IV & Heavy Missiles III. 5% bonus to torpedo damage per level.

  • Citadel Cruise Missiles

Skill for citadel torpedoes. Requires MLO V & Cruise Missiles V. 5% bonus to citadel cruise missile damage per level.

  • Citadel Torpedoes

Skill for citadel torpedoes. Requires MLO V & Torpedoes V. 5% bonus to citadel torpedo damage per level.

  • Auto-Targeting Missiles

Skill for auto-targeting missiles. Requires MLO II. 5% bonus to auto-targeting light, heavy & cruise damage per level.

  • Defender Missiles

Skill for anti-missile defender missiles. Requires MLO II. 5% bonus to defender missile velocity per level.

Support skills

  • Missile Bombardment

Extends missile range. Requires MLO I. 10% bonus to max missile flight-time per level.

  • Missile Projection

Extends missile range. Requires MLO III. 10% bonus to missile velocity per level. (Train this before Bombardment)

  • Rapid Launch

Requires MLO II. 3% bonus to missile rate of fire per level.

  • Target Navigation Prediction

Boosts damage against fast-moving targets. Requires MLO II. 10% bonus to missile's explosion velocity per level.

  • Warhead Upgrades

Increases missile damage. Requires MLO IV. 2% bonus to missile damage per level.

  • Guided Missile Precision

Boosts damage against small targets. Requires MLO V. 5% decrease in missile's explosion radius per level.

Advanced Skills

  • Rocket Specialization

Skill at using advanced rockets (anti-ship and long-range). Requires Rockets V (advanced rocket firing requires MLO V). 2% bonus to tech II rocket launcher rate of fire per level.

  • Heavy Assault Missile Specialization

Skill at using advanced heavy assault missiles (anti-ship and long-range). Requires Heavy Assault Missiles V (advanced heavy assault missile firing also requires MLO V). 2% bonus to tech II heavy launcher rate of fire per level.

  • Light Missile Specialization

Skill at using advanced light missiles (high-precision and high-damage). Requires Light Missiles V (advanced light missile firing also requires MLO V). 2% bonus to tech II standard & assault launcher rate of fire per level.

  • Heavy Missile Specialization

Skill at using advanced heavy missiles (high-precision and high-damage). Requires Heavy Missiles V (advanced heavy missile firing also requires MLO V). 2% bonus to tech II heavy launcher rate of fire per level.

  • Cruise Missile Specialization

Skill at using advanced cruise missiles (high-precision and high-damage). Requires Cruise Missiles V (advanced cruise missile firing also requires MLO V). 2% bonus to tech II cruise missile launcher rate of fire per level.

  • Torpedo Specialization

Skill at using advanced torpedoes (anti-ship and long-range). Requires Torpedoes V (advanced torpedo firing requires MLO V). 2% bonus to tech II torpedo launcher rate of fire per level.

eve/weapons/missiles.txt · Last modified: 2017/02/27 23:28 by conscript