Last Monday I opined the Rubicon change to the Marauder class battleships, specifically Bastion Mode, is too powerful for high-sec PvE missions. I based this on a Syndicate Competitive League tournament in which a bastioned Golem tanked the entire opposing fleet (minus one assault frigate) to outlast the match timer. It was my intent at that time to provide evidence to backup that opinion on either Wednesday or Friday last week.
That plan was washed out by my needing to train High Energy Physics to level IV in order to use the Bastion module. I was only at level I, oops. I started the training and hoped there'd be no wipes of Singularity. Chances were things would be pretty set at that point so I'd be able to do it. I finished the training this morning. I completed the mission and frapsed nearly the entire event. Here is the ship fitting I took into the mission.
The tl;dw (too long, don't watch) is my suspicions look confirmed. My dual repper/dual cap boosted Kronos might have been able to clear the site without Bastion Mode. However, I would have had to manage my capacitor carefully and would have had to burn through a lot of Navy 400s to make it happen. While in Bastion mode, I was able to tank all the DPS with a single heavy armor repairer. And because my resists were increased by the extra 30% Bastion mode gives me, I was able to pulse my capacitor boosters, using them only when my capacitor alarm sounded every once in awhile.
And as for taking out the rats, that was the easiest part of all. The frigates took more time than all the other ships combined because I could only use light drones on them. All the larger classes of ship I was able to hit with my Heavy Neutron Blasters, even the destroyers. If I had gone into Bastion mode straight away rather than delaying to let you all see what their DPS and my tank was like, I could have easily cleared this site in under 10 minutes. Rinse, lather and repeat: there's a good chance I could do four missions in an hour. I could stack them up, drop one of the new Mobile Tractor Units where I was (center of the wreck field,) and proceed to the next level IV. The only thing that would really slow me down is drone replenishment. I could take care of that with a Mobile Depot strategically placed.
This particular level IV security mission wasn't all that hard and it wasn't all that lucrative. Still, I made 15 million ISK from mission rewards, rat bounties and loot. That'd be 60 million ISK an hour - in high-sec. Of course, the ship itself would have cost around 1.5 billion ISK and there is usage overhead. It'd take 25 hours at least to get an ROI. But it'd be a fun 25 hours. And who's going to gank your ship? It might be the safest 1.5 bISK ship in all New Eden, so long as you stay in high-sec.
So if you've got the time, watch at least the first 16 minutes of the video. You'll see all the things I talk about above and then some. You'll also see a new way to make easy ISK by yourself in high-sec, as long as you can pony up the buy in. That's a lot of money just to make level IVs a cake walk. That aside, if you're doing it for standing anyway or just to shoot things, why not make the most of it and fly one of the coolest looking ships in New Eden? The Bastion transform is without a doubt the bitchinest effect yet, which is why in the end I'll look the other way on the unbalancing thing. Just saying.