|Posted - 2009.04.17 18:36:00 -
Edited by: Grista on 17/04/2009 18:45:03
The drone window (when undocked and your ship has drones in its drone bay) has a small triangle pointing to the right at the top. Right click that to get drone options.
"Focus fire" is pretty obvious, and likely one you will want.
When set to "passive" drones will never engage a target unless you select it and tell them to engage.
When set to "aggressive", drones will engage a target that shoots them and targets that shoot you - if the player/npc locks you and takes an aggressive action AFTER the drones were launched into space. Having drones launched and set to aggressive is very important if you are engaging opponents who have jamming (ECM) capability. You won't be able to direct them between targets, but it's usually better than being able to do nothing at all while jammed.
Prior to yesterday's patch, if one drone was shot, only it would engage the attacker, regardless of "focus fire" setting. I haven't tested it since to see if all will aggress one attacker, or how/if it chooses between multiple targets.
edit: if you are receiving assigned fighters from a carrier, you want "attack and follow" selected. Otherwise, they will not follow you if you enter warp. This change seems new/buggy since Apocrypha 1.0 (the patch in Feb). I regularly rat with assigned fighters and noticed weird things happening with that setting. Previously, "attack and follow" had no effect on fighter behavior for anyone except the actual carrier pilot.
This works differently for the Carrier pilot himself. If that player selects "attack and follow", then fighters will pursue targets that warp away. This is generally not desired, as you cannot see the health of fighters on a different grid than your own. In PvP combat, it's not uncommon for ships being attacked by fighters to warp away to a friendly POS, where POS gunners or other ships outside the shields to kill enemy fighters.
edit 2: Be careful with "Aggressive" drone settings during missions, particularly if you are trying to kill one group of rats at a time. It's possible a drone will move far away from your ship to engage a distant enemy, and aggress a separate group of rats simply by being in range of them. Drones also don't know whether or not one particular rat is the "trigger" for a subsequent wave.