For what it's worth, I'm going to throw in my input. I've scout rushed more than anyone, and I can tell you, this strategy isn't designed to be the superior late game fleet. Massed scouts in late game are overall weak, and I do not think this is the fleet you want if you're going to be going on the offensive.
Scout rushes should only be used on a map, such as single system 5v5's and 4v4's, where youre homeworlds are 5 jumps or less apart. Scout rushes in my book are making a ton of scouts when you see someone going straight to LRMS, Assailants, or Illums.
The point of doing scouts to fight LRF's is this. You get to buy a cheap fleet that allows you to invest in your economy so you can not only have a sufficient fleet to knock him back, you also have a better economy that will allow you to overwhelm your opponent with your next wave of ships.
To be clear, I hate LRF fights because I HATE FIGHTING ROCK WITH ROCK. That's what LRF battles are. It's a mindless battle of who can make more, instead of who can make the better fleet. As many of us have noticed, Fighters no longer do the job. I'm sorry devs, but I just don't follow your logic when you made carriers SLOWER than long range frigates. I was ok with the fact that HC's were faster than carriers. They're good against anything. Now, all someone has to do is make some flak (not alot), and they can crush the fighters, and all that person is left with is carriers gobbling up ship slots that can be chased down by the very unit they were designed to counter.
So, fighters don't do the job. Flak are too strong against them. I wanted a counter. I don't want to outproduce someone, I want to out wit them, hence why I'm playing a STRATEGY game.
I figured this strategy out when I noticed the anti-light bonus that scouts get. This bonus is ridiculous. You need to match production in ship slots (three tec scouts per 1 Illum, or 4 vasari scouts per 3 lrms, etc). There's a BIG drawback though. Scouts are good against ONLY long range frigates. If you're still making Long Range Frigates and/or your own scouts to fight against other scouts AND you're losing, that's your own stupid fault.
I designed this because it's the only counter I've seen that sufficiently pushes back the annoying LRF rusher. You know what I mean. The person who gets X number labs needed for LRF's, techs them, and sends as many as possible your way.
Scouts aren't for assaulting. They do 50% of their damage to anything not with light armor, and their dps is pathetic to begin with. The only reason they're any good against LRF's is the 200% damage multiplier they against light armor. That's +100%. Lethal.
If there is a developer reading this, DON'T you dare nerf these scouts. If anything, the Vasari scout needs a light buff in damage (up to 4 to 4.5 dps per ship instead of 3.5) and a slight buff in shields. Advent scouts are incredibably tough. TEC scouts are incredibly strong (Best Scouts for countering LRF rush). Vasari scouts get neutrals, but hold the worst combat value. They can do the job, but overall are just a tad weaker than Seekers and TEC Scouts.
Oh, for the record, to whoever is pissed that somoene is building scouts instead of frigates, guess what? They're frigates too.
As I see it, this game rewards the person who has the better understanding of how to play. The counters are as follows as the game stands.
Light Frigates --> Flak --> Fighters --> Scouts --> Long Range Frigates --> Light Frigates
In this loop, I remove scouts from it once you have the econ to support massed long range frigates with carrier support. Carriers work as support, but not as a stand-alone fleet.
There's also this chain.
Fighters --> Bombers -- > HC's --> Anything besides strikecraft (Including HC's oddly)
I've also left out
Light Frigates --> Support Cruisers.
Devs, the biggest problems in this game are the good damage mulitpliers the LRF gets (It's lowest one is 75% agaisnt anything, including caps, only frigate besides HC to get that). That's why everyone spams them. This is also why most people mix in flak with them. Flak stop fighters hard and let that person keep their long range frigates that are free to terrorize.
That's why I looked so desperately for this counter. It's the best answer I've seen to knock back the "unbeatable" long range frigate spam. It's the only one that works.
So some of you say it's too hard to beat late game? Are you kidding me? Make anything that doesn't have light armor and you'll beat them. ANYTHING. If you're cap died to scouts that's cause you kept making targets with light armor. Scouts are pathetically weak against caps. To get through a cap's armor, high mitigation, and high health and shields, that means you made a fleet of lrf's that the scouts just mauled through.
My parting words? Learn the counters, and nothing in this game will phase you.
Changes I'd like to see in the game:
1) Vasari Scouts get 30% more shields, 10% more health, do 4-4.5 dps. Need the buff to compare to TEC and Advent
2) Illuminator Needs to be nerfed slightly. I think the way to do this is to either adjust the stats on the Illum, OR make them more expensive. I think the Illum SHOULD be the strongest and toughest LRF, but right now, their cost is very very comparable to Assailants and LRMS. Illums should be 10%-25% more expensive than assailants and lrms. They're strong and cheap. It shouldn't be that way.
3) Repulse is completely broken. It affects all ships, including caps. It uses almost no antimatter (6 per second). It's to easy to fire it, move, and then fire it again. The simplest fix to this is to just up the antimatter cost. I don't mind that repulse makes ships that it effects stop firing. I don't mind that Repulse has a range bigger than light frigate countering abilities. I don't mind that LRF's get a 75% multiplier against Guardian heavy armor. I don't mind that Fighters/bombers, which are "immune" to repulse, only get 50% multipliers against them. I mind that the ability costs so little and allows people to completely ABUSE the ability. They just don't stop. I'm ok if they use it strategically, but I hate it when they lean on it to stall because I'm crushing them and they need a broken ability to make a stand.