After having played Elite: Dangerous for a while now, I’ve finally moved up to a Lakon Type-7. The ships I moved through were;
Sidewinder -> Hauler -> Adder -> Cobra Mk. III -> Lakon Type-6 -> Asp Explorer -> Lakon Type-7
Now, looking back at it, I’m of the opinion that the Asp was a mistake. Don’t get me wrong, the Asp is a good ship, if for some reason you really want a ship that can do everything in the one hull. But it’s expensive to buy, and expensive to fit.
For example, here’s a multipurpose Asp fit. It carries 88t of cargo, has 127 shield strength, can jump 18ly while laden and costs 13.7 million. True, you can refit this to carry more (undersize the shield generator) and can downgrade the various components, but that’s about what you’re looking at.
Let’s compare that to a 100t cargo Type-6 build. The Type-6 has less shields, of course. It’s a trader. But it’s still armed, carries an acceptable amount, jumps 18.3 ly, and only costs 4 million credits.
Then let’s also compare a hunter-killer Viper setup. No cargo, but 116 shield strength, good weapons, jumps 14.9ly, and only costs 2.3 million.
You could have BOTH the Type-6 and the Viper for 6.3 million, versus 13.7 million for the Asp.
It’s worthwhile to note that the Viper is a monster in combat. It’s fast (very fast), has a narrow profile, and its hardpoint layout is very conducive to using fixed hardpoints. The Asp is a bruiser, and while it’s still a good fighter, it can’t go as fast as the Viper and has a much broader forward-facing profile. Losing a Viper is also much less of a sting to the wallet.
So, with the above points in mind, I’m thinking to myself that the Asp isn’t really great value at all. If you’re able to do different roles with different hulls (because you’re based in the one place, for example), getting a Type-6 and adding a Viper is going to represent much better value for money.
Oh, the weird 2t tank + class 3 scoop on the Viper is intentional. The Viper is sorely limited by mass, and with the class 3 scoop you can fill the tank in seconds and a 2t tank can still last for a max-range jump. So you save a few tonnes of weight doing it that way (you can actually jump FURTHER in this configuration), and you can refuel very quickly.