LIFE ON TITAN
No matter what you do on Titan, you will be attacked from time to time. Pirates will attack you if you're carrying cargo of any value at all. Factions will attack you for revenge if you've shot one of their ships. Or, maybe a dogfight turns bad and you're taking more damage than your prey. There's no way around it. You must learn to evade attacks and defend yourself.
If someone attacks you, they aren't going to just quit. They are going to destroy you. Once you recieve the HUD warning that you've been targeted, TAKE IMMEDIATE ACTION. Generally this means hitting full throttle and identifying your enemy on your radar screen (bottom right of HUD).
Your next decision is whether to counter-attack or run. As a rule, it's best to run if someone has already begun an attack. This is even more true if they are already behind you or you don't have the equipment or power (charge) to fight.
It is almost always best to initially run if someone has gotten the drop on you. This is especially true if you're carrying valuable cargo. In this case, if you try to fight back, other pirates may join in and make your survival nearly impossible. If you decide to run, you don't necessarily have to target your opponent. You can keep an eye on them with your radar. Attackers have a red line leading to them from the center of your radar. Try to keep them from getting directly behind you.
TUNNELS -- Try to hit a tunnel as quick as you can. Just start a fast, wide turn until you see a crater name in the compass at the top of your HUD. Now head toward it. Keep the crater name centered. Computer generated pilots pause before entering tunnels and go through them slowly. If you've mastered your tunnel flying, you'll be able to get quite a head start.
Remember that you can sell just about anything in any crater. It really pays to tunnel through to another crater to throw off your enemies. Sometimes they don't even follow you through. Always use a tunnel if you're low on power and will need to charge up to complete a trade run. You may have to hop to a couple of craters just to get a good charge while being pursued by a persistent enemy.
JINK and STRAFE -- This means flying in a jerky, unpredictable pattern that makes you an uneasy target to hit. I like using directional thrust to slide left and right. I can keep moving in my escape direction easier than if I jink by pointing my nose all over the place. Gaining a lot of altitude and then losing it throws off pirates, too. Just fly erratically whenever your foe is close enough to show up on your radar screen. You'll take far fewer hits than if you just flew straight and level. Try to keep the enemy's dot on your radar from ever being directly behind (or in front of) you.
BIG TURN -- If things are starting to go badly and you may not make a tunnel try making a fast, sharp turn while gaining altitude. Stay at full-throttle and don't use the Quick Turn here. Turn to the first tunnel you line up with and head in that direction. It will take your enemy a while to line back up with you and restart his attack. The Big Turn works best if your enemy is close to you.
Counter measures are flares or chaff (debris) ejected from the rear of your Moth in order to detonate a missile heading your way. Hopefully, the missile will be attracted by the flare or detonated by the chaff before it gets to you. They are both cheap defenses against missiles that could otherwise severely damage you with one blow.
There's something of a debate on whether flare or chaff make the best all-around counter measure. I lean toward chaff, but don't see a huge difference. I used to prefer flares. If your enemy flies through chaff, it damages his shields slightly. Some missiles, like swarms, are more susceptible to chaff. There's no law saying you can't use both. Check out a table of specific counter-measures for specific missiles here.
Use two or three counter measures every time a missile is fired at you. One counter measure of either type will knock out a Sprat. Use three or more for FireBurst, UnderKills, GroundBase, or Devastators. Make sure to place a button for counter measures in an easy to get to place on your stick or keyboard. You'll use it often. Remember to contiue jinking and straffing while you use your counter measures. Counter measures are useless against cannon fire.
Facing Missiles Head-On
Since countermeasures eject from the rear of your Moth, they are not particularly effective in stopping missiles that are coming in from dead ahead. This is a common situation when facing off with someone who has you targeted or when facing human opponents online. Don't worry, you can still evade the missile.
The key to evading a missile approaching off your nose is the missile's lack of agility. They are easily outmanuvered.
If you've got some distance between you and your enemy, nose up and to one side and fly that path for one-half to a full second. Then quickly nose back down and head straight for your opponent.
If done properly, this will cause the missile to go below you. Missiles don't have much turning capacity and you can outmanuver them. Anytime you successfully fly above, below, or around a missile, it is unlikely that the missile will regain a lock and continue to pursue you.
Anytime your manuvering puts the missile's approach to your rear or side, fire countermeasures.
Shoot the missile in a close-quarters dogfight. I've not been able to tartet a missile, but I have shot down Devastators and FireBurst in a close-quarters dogfight. Use a laser and sight the missile. Sighting the missile is the hard part. Now cut loose and the missile will be destroyed. Missiles don't detonate when shot down.
Holograms -- As a rule you have to be fairly wealthy and in a Moon Moth or better to use Holograms. Holograms fire a 3D image of your ship that your enemy will think is you. This diverts his attack from you for seven seconds. These can really be lifesavers in tight situations. They're pricey, $5000 for a packet of five. They're available and Dr. Jobes, Downtown Munitions, and Specialty Arms. You select and fire them like you would a missile or cannon.
Afterburner -- This is another expensive item that can cause more trouble than it's worth to a beginning pilot. It gives a huge boost to your speed -- 1000 mph -- for a short period of time. It's great for outrunning a group of pirates and getting across a crater. The Afterburner is available at Moth repair shops like Breaker Makers for around $11,000.
The downside of the Afterburner is that it takes a good pilot to manuver while using it. It can also screw up the arrangement of your weapons. There's nothing worse than hitting Afterburner accidentally while cycling through weapons in a dogfight. New pilots may want to stick with other defenses.
There are only three reasons I ever counter as opposed to running when I've been targeted and hit first.  I'm on or near "Emergency Thurst" power and must get to the nearest Light Well to survive. I simply can't run.  When I'm salvaging cargo and my drone's out. I'm not about to leave a $5000 Drone behind unless I'm dead for sure. And,  when I'm not carrying cargo and am up for a fight anyway. I discuss 1 and 2 below.
Defense in Light Wells
If you've been in a couple of dogfights and don't have a Fusion Cell, you're probably very low on power and need to charge at a Light Well. If you're carrying cargo it's a good idea to sell it as quickly as possible. Try not to charge in a Light Well while carrying valuable cargo.
If, however, you're very low on power and can't make a run or fight, you must get to the nearest Light Well and get at least a small charge before continuing. Step 1 - go to the nearest Light Well. Stay close to the ground and use counter measures as needed. Remember to jink and strafe. If there's a building along the way to the Light Well, duck in it to top your shields. (Sometimes you can wait an enemy out if you want to spend the time sitting in a hangar.)
Once in the Light Well, target any enemies within radar range. Constantly check your "Next Target" and "Radar Range" functions for potential trouble. If you see an enemy on radar, point towards him and select your strongest missile. Missiles don't use power and your immediate priority is to get as much charge as possible before coming under serious attack. As soon as your enemy approaches you and is withing range. Hit him. Be ready to chaff any missiles coming your way.
Remember that your strategy is to get a quick, small charge and hit a tunnel to run to another Light Well for a full charge. Don't just hover in the Light Well and blast your enemy with cannons. Cannons use power about as quickly as your Moth charges and you end up in a dogfight where you can't afford to manuver outside of the Light Well. Stick with missiles and counter measures.
If you don't have missiles, use a few blasts from a laser or plasma kannon. Yes, they take up power, but they'll turn your enemy away for a few seconds at a time so you can charge. As soon as you get any charge at all, run to a neighboring crater and get a full charge there.
Defense While Salvaging
A drone costs some $5000 and you shouldn't run off an leave yours without a fight. The first thing you should do is get as close to the cargo your drone is picking up as possible. This lessens retrieval time.
Everything else is much like defending yourself in a Light Well. Your goal is not to defeat an enemy, but to fend them off long enough to get the cargo and take off somewhere to sell it. When someone attacks you immediately shift position a little and target him. Turn toward him and give him a blast or two of laser or plasma. He'll probably take off to get in a better attacking position. Get your goods and hit the nearest tunnel. Don't waste power killing a target when you're carrying or salvaging valuable cargo. You'll need that power for running and the other pirates that will be targeting you.
Haven and Midway
These two cavern/craters are a breeding ground for Titan's pirate community. You can rely on being attacked if you fly through either one with any type of cargo of any value at all. Just a word of warning. The best evasion of all is to prevention. Don't go asking for it. On the other hand, when you want some really good dogfighting practice, try running some Narcotics through these caverns.
Map of Moth Repiar Shops
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