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The Viper Mk IV is a heavy combat ship manufactured by Faulcon deLacy. Its ability to equip a class-4 power plant makes it ideally suited to long-range combat missions, while its armour allows it to soak up much more punishment than its predecessor, the Viper Mk III. These features come at a cost, however, making the Mk IV heavier and less agile than the Mk III.

— In-Game Description

The Viper Mk IV is a ship manufactured by Faulcon DeLacy. It is an upgraded variant of the Viper Mk III, and is classified as a heavy fighter craft designed for ship-to-ship combat superiority. Its improved internal modules, including a larger Power Plant, allow it to branch out from its predecessor's combat specialisation and take on a wider number of roles. As with its predecessor, the Viper Mk IV is a favourite choice as a patrol vessel for security forces across the galaxy.

Overview

The Viper Mk IV is a heavier variant of the Viper Mk III that sacrifices mobility for increased toughness. Its appearance is very similar to that of the Mk III and it can be difficult to tell the two apart, especially with the former's ship kit.

By default, the Mk IV has weaker shields than the Mk III due to its higher hull mass. However, the Mk IV is capable of fitting a larger Class 4 shield generator, whereas the Viper Mk III is limited to a Class 3. This results in the Viper Mk IV potentially having much stronger shields than the Mk III. Stronger shields combined with a higher base hull and more space for Hull Reinforcement Packages can make the Viper Mk IV substantially more resilient than the Mk III. These improvements come with the drawbacks of slightly reduced turn rate and speed. This makes it vulnerable to attacks from more nimble ships like Eagle Mk II and Cobra Mk III, and can be a disadvantage in a direct firefight against a Viper Mk III. Worthy of note is that the Viper Mk IV suffers from heat dissipation issues similar to that of its predecessor, though it does run slightly cooler. Additionally, with a Class 4 Power Plant, it can more easily power weapons with high power draw such as Railguns, as well as better defenses such as Shield Boosters. Though it is one of the least agile small ships, it is also one of the toughest. It is far more resilient than any other ship in its price range and can hold its own in a pure combat role. Additionally, a fair cargo capacity makes it a viable option for a Pirate.

Although the Viper Mk IV is a small ship, it is one of the best options for beginner deep-core asteroid mining. Its internal compartments and hardpoints can fit the necessary mining tools and still have space for 32-40 tonnes of cargo. Furthermore, such a build costs less than 10 million credits, making it affordable to all but the newest Commanders. Miners can use the Viper Mk IV to earn their way to superior mining ships, such as the Python, Krait Mk II, and Type-9 Heavy.

The Viper Mk IV can be useful as a multi-role. With a maximum cargo capacity of 54T it is a surprisingly effective trader for a fighter class and an above average jump range lets the ship take on an explorer role. Compared to the Cobra Mk III, a similarly priced ship, the Viper Mk IV is slower with a worse turn rate, but faster acceleration in all directions. It has a lower cargo capacity (54 compared to 64) and a slightly worse jump rate than the Cobra Mk III. What sets the Viper Mk IV apart from the Cobra Mk III, however, is its substantially stronger shields. Even with a Class 3 shield generator the Viper Mk IV has almost 2x the shield strength of a Cobra Mk III. With a Class 4 it has even stronger shields than that. This means that the Viper Mk IV can sacrifice hull reinforcement for cargo space without making as large as a sacrifice in terms of defensive capabilities compared to the Cobra Mk III. Commanders looking for a ship that can deliver similar multirole performance to that of the Cobra Mk III and still be able to take a few hits may appreciate the Viper Mk IV.

Overall, the Viper Mk IV exchanges mobility for defensive capabilities and can be more appealing to pilots who prefer bulkier ships. Whether it is better or worse than the Mk III comes down to preference and skill, though it does have a much higher price.

Convergence viper mk4

Viper Mk IV hardpoint convergence

The Viper Mk IV's hardpoint options are identical to those of the Viper Mk III. It has two Class 1 hardpoints located on either side of the cockpit and two Class 2 hardpoints located beneath it. Unlike the Viper Mk III, which has underside-mounted Class 2 medium hardpoints on a horizontally flat plane, the Class 2 medium hardpoints of the Mk IV are on a slightly angled part of the hull. The hardpoint placement on the Viper Mk IV gives it excellent convergence with fixed weapons but a narrow field of fire when using gimballed or turreted guns.

The Viper Mk IV has a delta-shaped hull which is significantly wider than the Mk III. The cockpit is situated just behind the bow, slightly raised. Compared to the Mk III, the Mk IV's cockpit is less exposed. The Mk IV lands on two small rear struts and one large front strut which doubles as a boarding ramp to the cockpit.

Purchase Locations

System Station Date Seen Discounts
Shinrarta Dezhra Jameson Memorial Always available 10% discount
Brestla i Sola Prospect Always available 20% surcharge
Parenni Alvares City Jan. 5, 2019 15% discount
Sietae Nahavandi City Jan. 5, 2019 15% discount
Ebor Morris Enterprise Jan. 5, 2019 15% discount
64 Ceti Jensen Gatewat Jan. 5, 2019 15% discount
Anlave Kobayashi City Nov. 15, 2019
Procyon Davy Dock Jan. 5, 2019
Liabeze Lyulka Beacon Jan. 5, 2019
Atlantis Kimura Terminal Jan. 5, 2019
Meliae Whitson Hub Jan. 5, 2019
Gateway Dublin Citadel Jan. 5, 2019

Outfitting

Main article: Outfitting

All ships are customisable through the Outfitting menu of Station Services. Listed below is the default load-out for the Viper Mk IV.

Category Default System Default Rating Default Class Max Class
Small Hardpoint Pulse Laser F 1 1
Pulse Laser F 1 1
Medium Hardpoint Empty -- -- 2
Empty -- -- 2
Utility Mount Empty -- -- 0
Empty -- -- 0
Bulkheads Lightweight Alloys I 1 8
Reactor Bay Power Plant E 4 4
Thrusters Mounting Thrusters E 4 4
FSD Housing Frame Shift Drive E 4 4
Enviroment Control Life Support E 2 2
Power Coupling Power Distributor E 3 3
Sensor Suite Sensors E 3 3
Fuel Store Fuel Tank [x16] C 4 4
Internal Compartments Cargo Rack [x8] E 3 4
Cargo Rack [x8] E 3 4
Shield Generator E 3 3
Empty (M) -- -- 3
Cargo Rack [x2] E 1 2
Empty -- -- 2
Empty -- -- 1
Advanced Docking Computer E 1 1
Supercruise Assist E 1 1
(PAS) I 1 1

Notes

  • The Viper Mk IV was added to Elite Dangerous in the 1.5 Update.
  • When the Viper Mk IV debuted, all Elite Dangerous Kickstarter supporters who backed the beta tier or higher received one for free.[1]

Trivia

  • At EGX 2015, David Braben commented that the Viper Mk IV "trades a bit of manoeuvrability and speed for better internals, but it's got the same hardpoint layout as the standard Viper".[2][3]
  • The Viper Mk IV's landing gear clips through the cockpit whenever it is deployed or retracted.
  • Unlike most other ships with variants, the Viper Mk IV's interior is visually identical to the Viper Mk III's interior. The only other ships with identical interiors are the Type-9 Heavy and Type-10 Defender.

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