AI War:Spiders And Weak Ships
What Are Spider Bots (And Other Weaker Ships) Good For?
A: Spider Bots may seem weak, and to a degree they are -- ships are intentionally unbalanced in AI War, since "fairness" in the sense of competive multiplayer is not an issue here, and also since the per-ship caps insure that you can't ignore a type that is available to you just because it isn't your favorite. So having the occasional slightly-weaker ship type can create interesting new gameplay scenarios.
But this by no means indicates that the weaker ship types are useless. Spider Bots are one of the best ships in the game for dealing damage to engines. This means they are particularly great for wormhole defense, where stopping enemy ships in their tracks is normally the job of tractor beams. They can also be great as front-line offense on enemy planets, stopping or slowing the enemy ships so that they can't reach your longer-range ships (but your longer-range ships, like missile frigates, can still pound the enemies into paste--unless they're sitting under a Force Field, engine damage isn't reduced by them!).
In general, whenever a ship seems weaker, that probably means that it needs to fill a specific support role or be used in combination with some other ship. There are no useless ships in AI War! Except maybe the Acid Sprayer ;-) but even it has its use (post 4.0 its gotten a boost making it more useful generally).