Monday, 24 December 2012

Plans change. People do crazy things.

So the whole "Fly 'til I die" thing, while a nice thought, doesn't look like it's gonna happen. Mainly because I've had alot less time IRL to play EVE recently (damn those Christmas parties/family gatherings), and the whole "LOSE ALL MAH SHIPS LAWL" idea kinda wears thin after the 8th or 9th loss in a row.

Also I kinda wanted to crack on with NullSec, experience new things and make lots of ISK. So sue me :)

So I was thinking about dropping my corp and saying my goodbyes in a couple of days before I headed on over to NullSec with Korvus.

Atleast, that was the plan until Korvus decided to stage a miniature revolution with his corp, kick Brick Squad in the balls and run for Wormhole Space.

Well crap, now what do I do?

- Follow Korvus into the Wormholes, a place I have no experience with, few scanning skills and even worse situational awareness?

- Join up with a LowSec pirate corp and return to murdering innocents? The changes in Retribution have now made piracy in frigates possible, and I'd love to get back to "living off the land" again...

- Find a NullSec Alliance and join it anyway, for the lols, blob combat and mad iskies?

- Stay in Faction Warfare?

- Run solo again for awhile?

Choices will have to be made...

Friday, 30 November 2012

'Hurricane Seraph' sighted in Black Rise

Yeah I know, my jokes are terrible

A few nights ago, I realised that when Retribution hits, my Hurricanes will probably not work as they are currently fitted (CCP are reducing PG and dropping a highslot if I remember correctly) so I decided to fly out my shield 'Cane and get it exploded for the insurance, fitted like this:

Hurricane - Classic Shield

6 x 425mm Autocannon II
2 x Medium Unstable Power Fluctuator I

I'm a massive fan of the 'Cane, I just suck at flying it
2 x Large Shield Extender II
1 x Warp Disruptor II
1 x 10MN Experimental Microwarpdrive

1 x Damage Control Unit II
3 x Gyrostabiliser II
2 x Tracking Enhancer II

3 x Medium Core Defence Field Extender I

Unfortunately (or fortunately depending on how you look at it) I didn't die while doing it. Infact compared to my other attempts in battlecruisers, I did fairly well. Admittedly most of my kills were frigates, but I still felt like I'd done something worthwhile instead of getting exploded within ten minutes by massive armour gangs with logi support.

Essentially I roamed around the edges of squid staging systems like Rakapas, knowing that it meant the squids may bring more reinforcements any minute, but it might also make them more overconfident. Dodging a couple of fail gatecamps (seriously, I took about 6 - 7 seconds to align in my 'Cane and they didn't catch me) I wound up in Aivonen, with Local full of squids, and D-Scan full of frigates and destroyers.

I decided there were worse ways to die, so I warped to 100km on a nearby gate and started burning off towards a planet, hoping they would get curious and come investigate. Sure enough, within two minutes or so, a Caldari Navy Hookbill lands around 200km off me, towards the gate and doesn't move for a while. He then turns and warps away. Sensing he's probably trying to get his gang a warpin right on top of me, I hit my MWD for about 20 seconds, and the second time he warps back in, he lands only 100km from me. He does the same again (warp out, warp in), but this time lands 60km off me.

Apparently bored of waiting, the rest of his gang land around him, total count including the first Hookbill, a Cruor, Executioner, Cormorant, Claw, Slicer, Thrasher, and another Hookbill. They all start burning at me, with only two of them (the destroyers) actually making any attempt to get some transversal speed going to counter my guns. Loaded with Barrage, my 'Cane can hit out to 30km, so they were going to get a shock when they got closer. The Executioner and Cruor pulled ahead of the pack, passing into my 30km range way before the rest of their gang.


I started shooting at the Cruor first (because LOLEXPENSIVE and the Executioner only had a long point), and his lack of transversal meant he lost pretty much all his armour before he got under my guns and started shooting and neuting me. I still didn't launch my Warrior II drones, because I knew they were going to be vital in dealing with all these frigates. Instead I cycled both my neuts on the Cruor and capped him out almost instantly. Without any cap, his scram, neuts and laser died, allowing me to pull some range with my MWD and blap him while he was dead in the water. One down! The Executioner was my next problem, holding me down with long point and using a Tracking Disruptor. Unfortunately for him, he flew in too much of a straight line to actually gain any benefit from the TD, and got pretty much alphaed off the field at around 25km from me while still trying to establish an orbit. Gotta love Barrage. Problem solved.

While I had been dealing with the fast tackle, the rest of the gang was catching up, although the Thrasher was seriously lagging behind the rest (probably AB fit). The Cormorant caught up with me, got into a decent 9km orbit and starting disrupting my balls off. My guns were nowhere near hitting him. The only problem with his excellent plan was that my neuts had a 12km range. They hit him hard, annihilating his cap reserves and turning off pretty much everything that was making him safe from my guns (propulsion, disruptor). Just like the the Cruor, his speed dropped, and then he was wiped off the field too.

The Claw caught up with me while I was dealing with the Cormorant, and his tight orbit, combined with excellent cap management on his part meant I couldn't pull any range (warp scrammed) and I couldn't hit him. Counter-cycling my neuts to maximise their impact, I launched my Warrior IIs and prayed. Slowly, but surely they ground him down, with none of the other pilots apparently thinking to help their friend by killing my drones. While the Claw made a good attempt to kill most of them, he didn't have the tank to survive the few that remained and exploded as the last of my drones managed to kill him. With most of their frigate gang obliterated, the survivors decided to cut their losses and warp out (two Hookbills, a Slicer and a Thrasher), leaving me with much less ammo, one heavily damaged Warrior II, and a huge smile on my face. I grabbed the loot from the wrecks, before heading back towards Nennamaila.

Nennamaila has an awesome sun

Dropping off my loot, I saw a mention of an enemy frigate gang (another one?!) in Milita chat, and quickly offered to join in, wanting my Hurricane to finally explode gloriously. I fleeted up with two other pilots, jinko3 and Arkenai Wyrnspire (Arkenai has a blog too, which he gave me the link to, , though currently it's only open to certain readers apparently. Damn it Ark!) who were flying a Thrasher and a Fed Navy Comet respectively.

Reaching Korasen, we attempted to bait a small plexing frigate gang to attack, but they pretty much entirely ignored us. However, a passing Harpy pilot soon shipped up to a Ferox to come and play pewpew. He came through the gate we were sitting on and aggroed me first. I jumped back through, before realising how dumb that was, and jumped back in. I was shortly followed by a small Gallente militia gang, who'd seen the Ferox jump after us, and wanted in on the kill. With seven Gallente pilots on the field against the poor fishy Ferox, he didn't stand a chance. Boom!

Having a good giggle at finally being the blobber, rather than the blobee (I'm a bad person I know), I headed back to Nennamaila, before shipping down to my faithful Taranis and roaming out again. I soon stumbled into neutrals in Akidagi who clearly wanted a fight, but their gang was too large to fight up close. I attempted to goad their Hookbill into attacking, but a Drake landed next to him before I could attempt to kill it. Instead I burned off, and for some wierd reason a Kestrel dropped out of warp not too far from me. Swinging towards it, I overheated my guns and spewed antimatter rounds into his shields. He dropped so fast I doubt he had time to cycle his ASB.

Personally I'm looking forward to the new Crimewatch UI
Warping off due to my GCC (since I was far enough off the gate for the guns to ignore me), I bounced between safespots for 15minutes, before heading back to Nennamaila again to reship into my Hurricane (since most of the other gang were in cruisers). Jumping back into Akidagi, I tried to engineer an engagement in which I could murder something expensive before I died but attempting to catch individuals on their own was largely fruitless with an SFI and two Drakes trying to catch me.

However I did land on top of the Hookbill I had seen earlier and blapped it before the SFI landed. After that I decided not to push my luck any further, and docked back up in Nennamaila, glad to still be flying the same ship I started my roam in.

 It's not something that often happens to me ;D

Before you say it, I know most of my kills were helpless frigates. It's not my fault they derped a little ;) I just enjoyed being the winner several fights in a row, instead of my typical "win - draw - loss - loss -draw - loss - draw - win" pattern that I usually follow in fights. A nice change!

Fly safe!

Monday, 26 November 2012

It's like having a multiple personality disorder

So there's some sad news, and some good news.

The sad news is, one of my RL friends has recently started studying REALLY HARD for University, so he feels that he can no longer play EVE and balance his studies at the same time(he was the CEO of an industrial corp, part of a larger alliance). He's decided that since RL > EVE, that he's going to pretty much stop playing until he feels he can handle juggling everything again. Which is sad news, because it was always fun to chat to him about how his corp was going, and the backstabbing that happened even in a small alliance.

But the good news is, he's effectively selling me his two characters (on two seperate accounts). All I have to do is pay the transfer fee, and bam, I get a fully skilled miner/PI character (which let's face it, I probably won't use) and a pretty well trained Amarrian Missioner/Orca booster, who's only a few weeks from T2 large lasers and comes with a blingy Apocalypse Navy Issue. Also I get all of his ships, modules, etc to do with as I please.

Which is pretty nice, to say the least. I'm not complaining about a free Orca, Hulk, Mackinaw, Crane, Navy Apoc, etc etc. It's definitely paid for my Archon if I flog it all, though I'd probably keep the Orca for transporting things.

After some due consideration, I'm thinking about selling off the mining character (since mining is boring and I don't want to pay for four accounts) and paying for the missioning character with PLEX for a year, until he's fully trained into a Paladin, at which point I'll transfer him over to one of my accounts I have at the moment. That way I can only pay RL cash for two accounts, and hopefully make enough per month to PLEX the third. And of course, if I can sell that mining character for a couple of bil (no idea how much characters are worth) then that'll put me a few months ahead straight off.

The only problem is, this mining character I'm selling needs about three months more training before I reckon it'll fetch a decent price on the bazaar, so I need to PLEX two accounts. I forsee much grinding of Incursions in the coming months...

And before anyone asks why I don't just sell both characters along with all their assets, I secretly enjoy mission running, and owning a Paladin has always been another of my private goals for EVE. (I may have to write those up one day, they might be interesting). So the mission runner stays.

And juggling the training of four characters? It's hard work. I'm having trouble keeping track even with EVE-Mon, and I can't even imagine how much effort other players put in, since I know that some players have upwards of five or six characters on separate accounts...

You crazy bros.

Anyway, fly safe!

Sunday, 18 November 2012

Feels like I'm in reverse guys!

First of all, I'm sure you'll all be very excited to know that I've gotten rid of all that CAPTCHA crap (or whatever it's called) for my comments section. I've also set it so you can be anonymous if your little troll heart so desires ;P I felt that the effort of jumping through those hoops to type a few words was probably not worth it, and honestly I doubt I get enough traffic to bring the spambots running...

On with the post!

So as I mentioned in my post a few days ago, I've been able to start running Incursions much sooner than I expected to. Like three months sooner.

Obviously this was quite a nice surprise, so yesterday night I decided to try and get picked up for a fleet, despite only having Logistics IV. To clarify for those who don't run Incursions, Logistics V is by no means a strict requirement to run as a Logi pilot, it's just more helpful for the fleet, because it means you only need to trade one cap transfer between Guardians, whereas a Logistics IV pilot requires two transfers to be cap stable. Since the majority of Guardian pilots fly what's called a "4/2" setup (four large remote reps, usually Meta 4, and two cap transfers), having Logistics V leaves a cap transfer free for cap hungry battleships, such as Abaddons. Which of course they'll thank you for, because it lets them keep shooting!

Still looks great, even with terrible graphics cards

So I posted my fit along with "Logistics IV" and tabbed out for a few seconds, expecting it to be a while before I actually got picked up. Instead when I tabbed back in, I already had a fleet invite. Pleasantly surprised, I accepted the invite and introduced myself as a Logi noob. This seemed to be something the Logis already in fleet seemed to take as a direct challenge, because they took me aside almost right away and started teaching me how to set up my overview, watchlist, and all that jazz.

It took a while to get to the right system, but that wasn't a problem since I was on the waitlist. Fortune struck again after I'd been waiting no more than ten minutes, when one of the Logis reported he'd have to leave after the next site. The FC checked the Logi waitlist, which I already knew had my name at the top.

FC: "Uhhm okay, Zendrak? You're up after this site. Get yourself ready"
Me: "Yep sure, I'll be ready"

Yep, it's all there
I had no idea what "ready" entailed, so I checked my fit was right and checked I had my drones. Everything looked fine. I decided to go to the loo before the site started, so I wasn't desperate halfway through. Unfortunately, I'd forgotten how fast Vanguard sites could be run, so when I got back I had a little moment of shock.

Fleet chat

James Thake > Zendrak Minayin ON GRID
Zendrak Minayin > warping sorry D:

I have never landed on a beacon and felt the eyes of everyone staring me down before. Despite the fact I was probably hundreds of miles away (in real life) from the nearest guy in my fleet, I felt guilty for slowing them down (judging by their completion times, they weren't hanging around). I quickly apologised to the fleet on TS3, which was met with some mild banter before we were told to hard align down the gate.

Fleet chat
James Thake > ----------------------- Logis please

Jason Parmala > L
Zendrak Minayin > L
Mika Firestorm > L

I'll admit, I actually felt a little rush of pride when I typed that one, solitary letter into the chat box. I know it sounds a little sad, but the three of us were literally the only thing standing between the guys in our fleet, and fiery destruction fueled by billions of ISK in hulls and modules. I mean, that's some responsibility right there, and they knew full well I'd never done this before. I was actually slightly honoured at the time that not one of them even suggested on comms that I'd screw up. The trust they were putting in a complete stranger just got to me a little.

I know, I'm taking this game far too seriously.

After the last logi had indicated he was still alive and breathing, the anchor ship rocketed off down the gate, a rather shiny fit Bhaalgorn. A slight pause before comms lit up again. "Okay Logis, come save me. DPS and Logis hit the gate now".

Our three Guardians landed pretty much on top of the anchor Bhaalgorn, and within only a few kilometres of each other. I had a few seconds of panic while setting up the cap chain due to some misclicks (accidentally repping a Guardian instead of sending him cap, derp), but we kept the anchor alive after catching him in high armour, at around 80%. A good start!

My overview looks like a total clusterfuck, I know.
I think I need a bigger screen
But then the rats started swapping targets.

The first few times they changed, I was a little slow on the draw, and it didn't help me that people don't tend to broadcast for armour in Vanguard sites. This is purely because there's few enough ships in the site that a Logi with Multitasking III can lock all of the fleet, which means you can see all of your fleet mates' armour readouts fairly easily. Unfortunately, I was so fixated watching the little red bar reverse back on itself that I kept missing whenever a ship a few targets over was getting utterly nailed. Vanguard pilots simply expect you to notice they're getting their asses handed to them, which is both endearing and scary at the same time. The few people who do broadcast are either:

A) New to Incursions and worried about dying
B) In deep armour (I'm talking like 30-40% here) and assume you've fallen asleep

I even joked to one of my fellow Logis that he didn't seem to broadcast for reps five sites in a row, no matter how long it took us to notice. He replied that he might consider broadcasting if he was dipping into hull. Maybe.
Stuff still exploded even though I had no guns myself

Balls of steel or what?

Thankfully my two Logi tutors were faster and more experienced than me, so nobody died due to those first few spawns, and after a few sites I was starting to get the hang of it. Here's pretty much what I did in each site.

- Land on gate
- "L" up in fleet chat
- Wait for anchor to warp in
- Follow him, save his ass, set up cap chain
- Wait for rats to switch targets
- Switch three reps to new target when needed, pull off a rep when he stabilises (keep some in reserve)
- Rinse and repeat as rats move primary while DPS squad mows down said rats
- Collect payment, warp out to next gate
- Start again

And I found flying as a Logi oddly cathartic. I commented to one of my 'tutors' how nice a change it was to be creating grey on targets instead of red. He agreed, mentioning that when he first flew Logi, he felt like he was "playing the game in reverse", which made me laugh.

It's a weird thing to pick out, but regardless, I'm enjoying flying Logi much more than flying DPS so far. Plus you get picked up for fleets in mere seconds.

Show me the moneyyyyy!
Also, I'm just so awesome as a Logi that I got picked up by a fellow Logistics pilot, Anath Shamgar, and he asked if I wanted to join his corporation. Hell yes I do! So now I'm in a shiny new corp, with a shiny new ship, and playing with lots of other shiny people.
Life is good :D

And of course, it's nice to have a "direct" supply of ISK again. Trading is decent, but it's nowhere near as fun as an Incursion fleet. I'm glad to see despite the nerfs, Incursions are still the "social event" they were back when I flew DPS.

Fly safe!

Tuesday, 13 November 2012

A new addition to the fleet


I blame Faction Warfare payouts. It felt weird to be chugging around 3bil in liquid ISK without anything to spend it on, since I was too lazy to start trading again (all my major orders finished over the weekend, giving me some surplus ISK to spend on Seraph). But then I thought, "Hey, there is something I can spend it on..."

So I made some inquiries, looked around a little, and suddenly bam!

Yeah you'll probably have to click to zoom so you can see it

I am now the proud new owner of an Archon carrier!

 I won't be able to sit in it for atleast 73 days (If I train straight for it), or move it and fit it for atleast half a year (in terms of jumping it to a new "home" system), and I estimate it's going to be between a year and a half and two years before I'd feel ready to fly it in combat. Not to mention all the new skillbooks I'm going to need to buy, along with more drone skills, finishing Logistics training, finding a corp who would actually use my carrier in combat, and actually knowing how to fly the damn thing among other problems.

Also not getting it killed the first time I jump it somewhere would be great.

So I'm in for the long haul it seems. But it's looking to be fun, plus I'm part of the way towards my dream of flying a carrier in combat!

And of course, I'd like to give a shoutout to Ispia Jaydrath over at EVE-Fail for supplying me with my sexy new capital ship at a very reasonable price. Thank you very much!


Also, speaking of Logistics ships, I've been looking at my skill queue for Incursions (with some messing on EFT), and it turns out I could fly in Incursion fleets within two days, after I finish training Logistics IV. Since I was expecting to wait it out until atleast late January, that's something of a shock to me. Finishing those skills I've "bumped down" in importance will still be very useful to my Guardian, (and eventually my Archon), but at the moment I've pretty much got all the skills required to be a useful addition to fleets.

Which is a good thing, because carriers aren't cheap.

I winced a little when I accepted
The only "desperate" skills I want to train after Logistics IV finishes is Logistics V followed by some Navigation skills (since alot of tank for Logistics ships comes from their mixture of small signature, high speed, and high resists). The rest will simply give me a little more cap, or slightly higher EHP, or some other "minor" bonus which I can live without for awhile. So looks like I'll be crashing some Incursion fleets this week, and I'll probably write a little post about my experiences, since pretty much all posts I've read on Incursions have been from the point of view of the DPS pilots. Maybe I can add something new?

Also I'm planning to write some short "Summary posts" every couple of days regarding my "Fly 'Till I Die" campaign. I've already lost a good few ships, and the insurance is rolling in :D

I still need to name this damn carrier though. I've got 73 days...

Fly safe!

Monday, 12 November 2012

Fly 'till I die

Well I'm moving again.

I know, I know; I've not been in Faction Warfare very long, and I'm already heading off somewhere else? Hardly an exhaustive trial. And I bet some of you are thinking "Oho, now CCP have nerfed FW payouts, Seraph doesn't want to know anymore".

Yeah you'd be kinda right. But shut up.

Because I want to try something new. As fun as FW is, it's too much like my old pirate lifestyle at times. Yeah I don't lose security for blowing up those squids, and it's pretty nice to earn LP for shooting crap, but it's still in LowSec. And I'm at the stage where LowSec mechanics are no longer working for me, but against me, since EVERYONE will happily take potshots at a solo pirate frigate. I'm hoping the upcoming Retribution expansion will change that somewhat (no more GCC when shooting off gates! Finally!), but currently I want more unrestricted fighting. Why shouldn't I be able to murder that Hoarder in my Rifter while on a gate? It's not my fault he decided to use a T1 hauler to move his sweet sweet loot through dangerous space.

These angry people are about to molest some other angry people.
Very exciting.
Which makes the obvious choice for me venturing into NullSec. But while I'm comfortable with LowSec mechanics, NullSec is like some sort of witchcraft to me. I've had pretty much zero experience in Null, and like LowSec in the past, I'm somewhat nervous about venturing in there alone. And I've got no real interest in Sov Warfare currently, so I wouldn't want to join a massive alliance and get constant CTAs flung in my face. Also being perpetually molested by SuperCaps/Draek fleets/hotdrops is not my idea of a good time.

So I was undecided. LowSec was getting old, but Nullsec seemed insurmountable on my own.

Then I saw my old buddy Korvus Falek over at the Korvus Kut had moved out to NullSec and joined "Suicides-R-Us", a member of "Brick Squad" Alliance. I was intrigued, since it sounded pretty much pure small gang PvP, combined with "LOLOLOLOL DROWN IN ISK" PvE. I liked the sound of that quite alot. So I dropped him a mail, and we started chatting. Turns out he can effectively "fast-track" me through recruitment on his recommendation, and I'd even get help moving my crap out there.


But frankly I'd rather not have to deal with all the ships in my hangar being moved out to Null, so I decided on a better plan.

Every ship currently in my hangar will be flown in Faction Warfare until it explodes.

This is probably my favourite ad for EVE, frigates murdering battleships

Like all of them. That's atleast 80 ships at the last count (though many are currently unfitted, like a stack of Thrashers I've been working through), which is going to be a fair chunk of insurance money coming back my way, and hopefully alot of "good fites".

Obviously I'm not going to fly like a total drooling retard, and engage things stupidly, but at the same time I'm going to be saying "Ah, screw it" much more, and taking fights I'd usually avoid. So my countdown to NullSec is measured in the number of ships I have left. I've already lost several in dumb ways, but I also got some decent kills, so I'll be looking forward to lots of fighting in the next few days!

Of course I'd like to point out that me leaving FW is in no way a poor indication of the quality of the gameplay, corps or people involved.It's just that it just feels too "familiar" to me, and I want to try things I've not done before in EVE.

I'll resist making a joke about "unexplored holes" here
For example, I'd like to join a Wormhole corp/alliance at some point in the future and try that lifestyle out too. I don't feel I've got the SP to be a useful asset yet (like a T3, probing skills, HICs, Recons, other important ship types in Wormhole space), since you don't see many frigate gangs in Wormholes from what I've heard. But I'll start with Null, since it'll introduce me to bubble mechanics and the like. Baby steps are the way for me :D

HighSec? Done it.
LowSec? Done it.
NullSec? On the way :)

Fly safe!

Wednesday, 24 October 2012

Analysing the dumb things I do

*Warning! Text heavy post!*

I apologise for the snail's pace that I've been blogging at this month. After Borderlands 2, I stupidly decided to buy another recently released game that took my fancy, called Dishonoured, since it was pretty cheap where I live. I hadn't heard much about it, but it looked fun, and I was pleasantly surprised when I played through it.

Erhmagerd, so kewl
But since I bought Dishonoured, I've had even less EVE time and my Borderlands 2 time has suffered too. Damn having responsibilities and everything, otherwise I could just sit on my ass all day and play games. But I felt a little guilty leaving my little blog without a post for over a week, so I decided to type one up last night. As a change of pace, I decided this post will be about my recent losses, rather than my kills (not just because I haven't been able to kill anything recently). Hopefully it'll be a learning experience for me and you, which is always a good thing.

Mainly it's for me though. After all, I'm the one who keeps doing stupid things in Assault Frigates :)

So here's the basic plan; I'll link the mail, explain a little about the situation I was facing, and then what I did (which got me killed). Then I'll discuss alternatives to what I could have done that I thought up after the fight. Of course, if you have any different ideas, feel free to share them in the comments :D

Here we go! The first fight is...

1) Jaguar (Me) vs Shield Brutix, Coercer (Later on)

The Situation
-Solo roam, ended up in Pynekastoh with two squids in Local. I assumed that if I attacked one, the other would turn up fairly fast. Even so, I was confident I would be able to disengage fairly quickly in my Jaguar if the shit hit the fan, since it's pretty nippy for an Assault Frigate. I found one squid-boy in a Brutix outside a medium plex, and decide to engage for the lols. I could tell from the speeds he was reaching that he was shield fit, so I loaded up EMP ammo and got in close. His guns couldn't track me and he hadn't launched any drones.

- I ripped down his shields at a decent speed, but his peak recharge slowed me down to the point I was worried that I wouldn't break him. Overheated guns pushed him past the edge, but by the time I was past the peak, the Coercer had landed, 50km or so off us. The Brutix was in armour, but I knew there was no way I would burn him down with EMP ammo before that Coercer got in range and pissed on my parade. It was only now the Coercer was here that the Brutix remembered his drones and stuck them on me. The combined fire from his drones and the pulse lasers of the Coercer soon exploded my face. The Brutix was in half armour when I died :(

- I could have disengaged the moment the Coercer landed. There was no real chance of me killing the Brutix without dying from the Coercer, and I would have most likely been able to break off from the Brutix under an overheated AB before he could catch me again. So I could have run away like a little girl, but I was too fixated on an "above class" kill.

- I could have switched targets to the Coercer and prayed I could kill him before I took too much damage. The Jaguar has a strong native EM/Therm resist, so that would have bought me some time, and I know that most Coercers in FW are pretty much fit for pure DPS, with a minimal tank. Chances are he would be running a similar fit to the people in the Gallente Militia  (light armour tank in the lows, i.e plate and DCU, with two heatsinks). If he had dropped, I potentially could have then tanked the drones of the Brutix, or atleast killed them off, before finishing him off too (if he didn't run when the Coercer died). It's nice to dream anyway.

- Sadly I did neither of these things and stayed on the Brutix, clinging to the insane belief that he might die before me. Jaguar down!

2) Enyo (Me) vs Punisher, Harbinger, Thrasher, Thorax

The Situation
- I jumped from Nennamaila (home system) into Enaluri and noticed a minor plex pop up as soon as I did so. I warped to it instantly and caught this Punisher before he could hit the gate and escape me. He pretty much melted under my LOLOLOL ENYO DPS. I then caught sight of several more ships coming in on close range scan, with the Thorax and Thrasher landing pretty much on top of me a few seconds later and the Harbinger landing around 15-20km from us. I decided to primary the Thorax, since I knew they tend to be all DPS/No tank, completely forgetting the fact that Thrashers are frigate killers.

- I was chewing nicely through the Thorax, with him in deep armour (yay Void ammo) when his flight of Vespa EC-600s got a jam on me, and screwed me over. I lasted the whole 20second jam period, was lucky enough to not get jammed again and instead pewed after the Thrasher, since the Thorax had sensibly pulled range from my blasters. The Thrasher took some serious hits, but I had come out of the jam cycle in seriously low armour, so by the time I had locked the Thrasher and started murdering him, I was in hull and going down fast. One last volley from the Thorax put me in my pod.

- Primarying the Thorax over the Thrasher was a seriously bad move on my part, I admit it. The Thorax and the Harbinger were having trouble tracking me anyway with their large guns, and the main problem was indeed the "Frigate killer" sitting right on my ass, pewing hot lead into my face. I'm under no illusions I could have killed the Thrasher before the ECM drones cycled on me (I had a good 10-20 seconds from the Thorax landing before I was jammed), and after he was down, I'm pretty sure I could have lasted long enough to kill the Thorax too, since the Thrasher damage would have been wiped away. Sadly I doubt I could have killed Harbinger aswell, but you can't have it all I guess :)

- There was also a chance to run between the Punisher dying and his buddies landing. I had maybe four or five seconds which I could have used to align out and run like a little girl, but instead I wanted to loot the Punisher and hopefully grab some more kills.

Derp derp, Enyo down!

3) Imperial Navy Slicer (Me) vs Rapier
- Yes a Rapier. No, this wasn't me assuming I could take on a Recon cruiser, he was cloaked :D I was chasing afk plexers, when I found an Incursus in a Major. Warping in left me 50km off the Incursus, followed shortly by a Rapier uncloaking not 10km away from me.

- I panicked and completely forgot about the cloaking delay for targeting the Rapier would have to suffer, and attempted to burn away under my MWD. Big mistake. Overheated webs and point caught me at around  35km and after that I was pretty much screwed. Slicer down!

- Obvious one would have been to warp away. He wouldn't have caught me in time and I would still have my beautiful Slicer. Not really much more I can say about this one :(

There's a couple more recent losses I also wanted to look at, so when EVE-Kill finally gets round to adding them to my lossboard, I'll update this post here. Mainly though, the next two losses are bad engagement choices rather than any actual mistakes during the fight. But otherwise I hope this post has been useful in some way to show you, the reader, that you have more options in a fight than simply "ERHMAGERD, DIE IN A FIRE".

I've definitely helped myself by doing this anyway!

Fly safe ;)

Saturday, 13 October 2012

A fight and some things

The Gallente Milita cashed out last week, which was pretty nice for me since I was expecting to miss it entirely. Instead I got home from work and found that I had two hours to get everything sorted before the LP dump happened. I had a close call getting Zendrak to Villore in time with the ship hulls I wanted (Navy Megathrons ftw) but in the end I walked away with around 3b profit from the cashout, along with a couple of Navy Vexor BPCs that I'm saving for a rainy day. So that was quite a nice end to the week, considering I'd only really tried to get LP for about two or three days. The rest was plexing when I was bored, or LP from killing squids. Pretty decent I think.

Then I stopped playing EVE for most of the next week, because something happened.


Yeah, I decided to buy Borderlands 2, since I enjoyed the first one quite alot. Big mistake as it turned out, because I got utterly sucked in, and my EVE hours went down the toilet. I think the awesome voice acting of "Handsome Jack" (the main villain as I can tell so far, I don't think I'm too far into the story yet) really got me hooked, purely because I found his sense of humour hilarious. The whole thing about his diamond horse had me giggling for hours.

Maybe that's just me though.

But anyway, I realised I was neglecting EVE, so I carved a few hours out of Borderlands to have a crack at some PvP, which I found pretty fast (which made a nice change).

Looking through my ship hangar in Nennamaila, I was tempted to fly something small, since my escapades with battlecruisers recently have often ended with me stumbling into armour gangs and dying horrifically. I decided on my all gank/no tank Enyo and undocked.

Seriously, hull tanking an Enyo works really well
I went straight into Akidagi, as per usual, purely because it's right next door to Ichoriya, (a Squid HighSec staging system) meaning you usually get a fair amount of traffic running through. There was only one war target in Local though, along with some neutrals and some guy who was blue to my corp (who jumped out a little later). Since our LP push, Akidagi was currently ours, which meant all of the sites were Gallente plexes. Therefore, all the rats would be on my side for once, which is nice and helpful in a PvP situation. Warping off the Nennamaila gate to the centre of the system I pinged D-Scan.

I picked up a Federation Navy Comet and an Ares interceptor. I was happy to fight either of them, and started scanning plexes, an obvious place for them to be. I found the Ares at a medium plex, and decided I could probably slingshot him if he tried to kite me. I hit warp, and then went on through the acceleration gate.  I landed in the plex a few seconds later with the Ares around 50km away from me, currently kiting the rats with rails while capturing the point. When he saw me land he began to align out, without any prop mod running (around 500m/s). Deciding I may aswell show I was interested in fighting, I began to burn after him under my AB. Annoyingly he lit his MWD at this point, and his speed jumped to over 3.5km/s.

Yeah, no way am I going to catch him when he's going that fast.

Instead I turned around, flying back towards the beacon while aligned to the Enaluri gate. I hoped he would turn back and come in to kite me, giving me a chance to jink into his orbit path and scram him down. (Look at me theorycrafting the engagement like a pro-pvper :D). Instead, I didn't have to worry about any of that, since a neutral pilot (flashy red) landed in the plex as I passed the warp in, leaving him only 20km from me. He was flying the Fed Navy Comet I'd seen on D-Scan earlier, and I decided there and then that if he locked me I was going to try and melt his face off.

He locked me. Oh hell to the no.

I flipped around, (since I was still aligning out to Enaluri) and set my orbit to 4.5km, as I noticed I  had Null ammo loaded from earlier (I expected to catch the Ares on the edge of scram range, if I caught him at all, so I'd need the extra falloff Null offers). The Comet came roaring towards me, with three Hornet EC-300 drones popping out behind him.


I launched my single Hobgoblin II and overheated my guns, expecting this to be a brutal and violent brawl between two blaster fitted monsters.

Well that was pretty much the opposite of reality, since his shields evaporated in a single volley, swiftly followed by around three quarters of his armour in another two volleys. I was shredding into his hull when his dual reps caught, which kept him alive for about another half a second, before I fired off two more volleys and exploded his ship. This little Enyo scares the life out of me with the DPS it puts out. I pretty much alpahed through his tank before his reps could cycle, which is pretty cool.

I offered a "gf" in Local, which he returned, before telling me to "enjoy the loot ;)". Curious, I opened the wreck and my jaw dropped. I thought I liked expensively fit frigates. This guy just went nuts with his ISK it seems.

The loot fairly loves me for once :D

The thing was, as I looted the Comet wreck, the Ares pilot appeared to have noticed our chatter in Local, and decided he wanted a taste of the potential shiny loots. Apparently unconcerned at the speed at which I'd murdered the Comet pilot, his MWD swiftly turned 50km into 8km, at which point I webbed, scrammed and blasted him into the void. Frankly he died even faster than the Comet. Obviously, greed is bad.

And I'm not too sure what he's doing with that fit, but I digress.

Onto the other things
- With this FW cashout I could by an Archon right now. Seriously. Right now. I couldn't fly it, sit in it or use it in any appreciable way but it would be mine. Should I do it? Probably not. But god knows I want to.

- Also in regards to Zendrak's skill training, he's currently ticking down Amarr Cruiser V, to be followed by the Logistics skillbook when that finishes. I'll be able to sit in a Guardian by Christmas, but actually flying it in an Incursion/Gang won't be happening till atleast late January/early February. It's not actually too far off, which is nice.

- I'm getting noticed more often in Local chat these days, which is stoking my ego a little. For example:

Nennamaila Local Chat
Alex Thule > hey seraph is that u with the blog?
Seraph Minayin > uhm i have a blog yeah
Seraph Minayin > zomg i'm e-famous :D
Alex Thule > i love it.. im subscribed.. anyhoo catch ya laters o/
Seraph Minayin > :D o/

I was smiling for a good while after. It's always nice to get compliments :D

- The origins of the term "Squid" to describe a war target was explained in Militia Chat the other day to a new guy who got confused as to why we were insulting a dish he enjoyed very much. I was pretty close to be fair.

Keaton Skor > A squid is an enemy combatant
Keaton Skor > Caldari-Amarr -> Cal-Amarr -> Calamari -> squid
Keaton Skor > so now you know
Cal Stantson > also they're slimy little shits who run away all the time and you can never get your hands on them

- I am stupidly excited for Retribution, the Winter Expansion. Making cruisers relevant in PvP can only be a "good thing", and I reckon frigate gangs will be much more prevalent with these "Logi-Frigates" being created. Also I have a  sneaky feeling the Punisher will become the core combat ship of these gangs, since high resists are always a plus when working with Logi ships. I'm looking forward to flying an Omen that doesn't suck too.

- Also yes, I'm back to using clunky old Battleclinic, since EVE-Kill seems to be constantly committing seppuku whenever I try and find killmails for blog posts. Also it seems to have eaten half my kills, which annoyed me a little bit ;D

When/if it gets working again, I'll switch back.

- And finally, at the recommendation of my corpmates I've decided to stop training for shiny new ships (like dat Harpy) and round off my gunnery support skills to V first, something I've been avoiding for like half a year now. It's a slog, but it'll make EFT less smug when I switch to "My Skills" and watch the DPS drop by like half. Because seriously that makes you feel a little bad inside doesn't it?

I've already trained Motion Prediction V, and currently Rapid Firing V is cooking away. I'm hoping to have most of them trained by the New Year, before switching back to SHINY THINGS training.

Fly safe ;)

Tuesday, 2 October 2012

Want to play a game?

Let's play a little game. A short PvP quiz if you will.


Here's the scenario. You're in a duo of a Hurricane and a Rifter, both sitting at zero on the gate. Your 'Cane is a classic 425mm Autos/shield tanker, while your Rifter is fitted with a long point and a MWD, with a light active armour tank. There's a war target Taranis buzzing around who's been following you for several jumps now, after skirmishing with your fast tackle earlier. At this moment, he's sitting 160-70km off the gate, just observing. Here are the three most obvious options (in my opinion) for what you can do.

A) Ignore him. It's not like he's going to risk engaging a Hurricane on his own, and all he's currently doing is watching you

B) Send out the Rifter to tackle him. With a MWD and long point, he'll hopefully last long enough for your 'Cane to warp to him (150km is minimum warp distance), neut him out and fling drones in his face.

C) Call in backup tackle to kill him, because the Rifter will most likely die, and you don't want the Taranis following you long enough for an enemy gang to catch up with you and kill you both.

Which would you do?

Well personally I would go for option C, since getting constantly scouted is just begging to get caught eventually...

Oh wait, no sorry, you can't do that one, because the Taranis murdered your other tackler (a Malediction) about five minutes before, using the exact same tactics as he is now. Also your Griffin died a minute or so after the Malediction when he tried to smartbomb on the gate, so you can't even jam out the Taranis and tackle him. I forgot to mention those ships at the start ;)

You could call for help in Militia Chat, but you may look a little silly calling for help about a puny Interceptor.

So instead the duo take the secret fourth option:

 D) Have the 'Cane burn out under MWD and assume the Taranis will sit there quietly while you tackle him and let your Rifter buddy (who stays at zero on gate) whore on the mail when you catch it.

What could go wrong?


Incase you hadn't guessed by now the Taranis was, of course, me, and this exact scenario (in reverse) was the one facing me last night. I personally expected more frigate tackle to turn up any second, but noooo, that would be the sensible thing to do, and all squids have apparently had their sense surgically removed years back.

So earlier I had baited a Malediction off gate from his gang including a Hurricane (who was using T1 guns), a Rifter and a Griffin in Iwisoda, and quickly melted him. However, I baited him a little too far which gave the rest of the gang room to warp, and I was soon jammed out (but not tackled) by the Griffin. With the Hurricane aligning towards me too, I decided to warp back to the gate (after pulling my drones) and jump on through. The aggression timers on the gang gave me time to scoot off gate on the other side in Rakapas and hold at 160km. I waited to see what they would do next.

The Griffin, Rifter and 'Cane all jumped in together, before crashing back to gate. The Griffin then decided to smartbomb for some reason and got torn in half by the gate guns. His pod zoomed off, slightly embarrassed. Then essentially the above scenario happened next. Go read it again if you've forgotten ;)

Back? Good. I'm now sitting around 170km off the gate to Iwisoda with a Hurricane steaming towards me, apparently determined to murder my face. I wanted to get another kill, purely to be an asshole and get away again without dying. While I knew the 'Cane had T1 guns fitted (he fired at me earlier and I saw it in my log), which made him a tempting target, I was pretty sure dual medium neuts and a flight of light drones would really screw me over. That made the Rifter my preferred target, and they were helpfully splitting up for me.

I decided to be super tactical and waited for my moment to strike. With the Hurricane 110km from me, I warped to the gate at zero, where the Rifter was sitting perfectly still, not even orbiting in jump range. The Hurricane was left over 60km off the gate, unable to do anything to save his buddy as I lit up my blasters and beat the living daylights out of the poor Rifter. Then I caught his pod too and popped that.

The Hurricane warped away.

I had a good giggle, patted myself on the back, scooped the loot and ran off back to Nennamaila.

Also Nennamaila is damn pretty. I love blue stars

And this has happened fairly often in the last couple of days. Baiting fast tackle ships into doing something dumb is disturbingly easy. Here's some examples:

I engaged an Interceptor as he jumped into me in Hikkonen, and he was soon dead as a doornail thanks to the LOLDPS the Taranis can put out. Unfortunately, his gang arrived halfway through the fight and popped me not long after the Crusader went down. And then they got my pod too which was a little embarrassing.

But I soon grabbed another Taranis and tempted this Crow a little too far away from his friends for them to help him. He died too quickly for them to catch up and tackle me :D

Then the next day in Nennamaila I was skirmishing with an Assault Frigate gang outside a medium plex, who had some fast tackle in the form of a Condor and a Caldari Navy Hookbill. They chased me around 80km away from their gang, where I proceeded to slingshot and murder the Hookbill, before forcing the Condor to pull range by setting my drones on him. I escaped in structure (around 78%). And I'm assuming the other guy on the mail shot at him earlier, because he had full shields etc when I caught him :P

I also helped a friendly Raptor pin down another kiting Condor (I swear these things are the FOTM in the Caldari Militia) and kill that too. Because I'm so helpful and stuff.

"Meh" you say "So this ship can kill lightly tanked fast tackle. So what?"

Well it can also brawl down rocket Hookbills like a freakin' boss and it locks fast enough to catch pods. That was nailbiting fight to say the least...

38% hull, proper casual like
The Taranis is easily my new favourite ship, and it's also my current "go to" ship when I see war targets bumbling around outside the station, since they invariably have fast tackle you can bait away from the safety of the herd, and it's fun as hell to do so :D Since the last ship I loved like this was my Vengeance, it's a fairly impressive feat for this humble Interceptor to win my affection...

Fly a Taranis. Come and hull tank with the "real men" ;)

Sunday, 30 September 2012

Back to my roots a little

So I decided fairly recently that while the whole "WOLOLOLOL VINDICATOR KILL" thing is cool, it's not really as interesting as a couple of solo kills. Maybe it's just me, but I have a feeling that solo kills are much more fun to read, since all I did on those Vindi kills is get close and overheat my guns while shitposting in Local with my fleet. Hardly "L33t PvP!!!1!"

Which meant I spent a few days this week totally ignoring any fleets that went up, and went out roaming on my own. And I'd forgotten after only a few weeks of gang fights in FW how much time you spend looking for a fight when solo. Seriously it's worse than I remembered. Of course this might be because I'm now with the Gallente Militia, and the squids are paranoid as hell if you willingly engage when you're outgunned, since they expect a gang to come running to save your ass any second. And I'm not even kidding, I was accused of being bait three times in one night while flying through squid staging systems in my Slasher. I was weirdly offended.

But on my first night out in my humble shield Jaguar, I stumbled into a squid cruiser on my way home after an un-eventful solo roam. Well to tell the truth, I was tabbed out on my internet browser after jumping through a gate, where I was sat for a good few minutes after uncloaking from the session change, having completely forgot I was still in space. So when I started getting damage sounds from my client, I almost peed myself.

Tabbing back in I saw a fish-boy Thorax attempting to hit me from 20km away with blasters (lol). Relieved my ship wasn't melting, I dived towards the gate and orbited at 500m, hoping to get a feel for his damage and check if he had help incoming. Local stayed the same and his guns were tracking me terribly at almost point blank range. I decided to engage for the lols.

No shield damage, proper casual like

Loading fusion rounds, I got into a tight orbit around him and started hitting him in the face with my awesome. He was dropping fast before he suddenly began to recover armour. "How odd" I thought. "You don't see alot of active Thoraxes". Using awesome tactics, I turned on my energy neut, which soon began to take its toll on the Thorax, as he repeatedly dipped into structure before clawing back some buffer. I kept my neut running and turned off my afterburner, since his tracking was in no danger of hitting me anytime soon. After dipping into hull several times, he eventually burst into a lovely blue flash, and being the asshole that I am, I pointed and popped his pod too (Not that he had any implants mind). I then attempted to troll him in Local for attacking an AFK frigate and losing, before realising that he would be in another system by now.


That was a little embarrassing on my part. And while his fit wasn't the best in the world, it was still a solo kill. Totally counts and stuff.

He didn't even launch his drones. I'm guessing he's new

Then later that week, I finally finished training Gallente Frigate V, which meant I now had three brand new ships to play with, the Taranis, Enyo and Ishkur (I have an Ares also, but it's more of a fleet ship, so I'm ignoring it for the moment). Fitting up one of each, I decided tonight would be the night of the Taranis, and undocked with dual-prop/hull tank fit (similar to my throw-away tackle Atrons I fly in militia fleets). I went out looking for trouble, and managed to find a couple of fights to get my solo back :D

Sadly the first killmail I appeared on with my sexual new 'Ranis was infact the Gallente Militia shamelessly blobbing a poor little Punisher who had wandered into our staging system by accident. He died with honour, pewing away at a Rupture while we all poked him to death.

I couldn't resist D;

The second victim of my terrifying Taranis was a squid Condor, who I followed through a gate into Enaluri from Nennamaila. I held my cloak until his ran out, at which point he was 12km from me. I spammed approach and turned on my MWD as I decloaked, but Condors accelerate stupidly fast, and he managed to extend the range to 15km before our speeds topped out at around 3.5km/s each. Of course, during this maneuvering he had also pointed me and started smacking me in the face with light missiles, which was slowly killing me. While I had no doubt I could escape if I wished, I've harbored a secret hatred for kiting Condors ever since several of them ground down a militia buddy before we could reach him. Refusing to let this one take another innocent Gallente soldier into the abyss, I switched on my overheat (which the Condor pilot didn't seem to do, or remember to do) and hit over 5km/s, swiftly catching the smug Condor by surprise, before scramming him and letting rip with my neutron blasters. His shield held for a few seconds before it collapsed, and then I volleyed him right through his armour and his hull.


And right as he popped I remembered I could have launched drones. Derp derp derp. I always forget I have drones when flying frigates with drone bays, I'm just not used to it. Oh well, it wasn't like I needed more DPS at that point. I scooped the loot before jumping back into Nennamaila to repair my guns and armour damage. Before I left station again, I wrote myself a sticky note (IRL)  that said "LAUNCH DRONES" and stuck it to my monitor. Problem solved!

I'm tempted to train Interceptors V purely for this ship...

Heading back out in a loop, I missed a few targets jumping through gates, before heading back towards Nennamaila to see if any squid gangs were poking our home system with a stick. Passing back through Enaluri again, I noticed a squid Firetail on scan near a medium plex. Dropping into warp I hoped he would stay on grid long enough for me to tackle him, but no joy, he had warped by the time I landed. I began to align out to the Nenna gate, when another squid frigate landed next to me, a Caldari Navy Hookbill. Both of us panicked and began burning away from each other, because the range quickly extended to over 50km before I turned at 90 degrees from him and watched to see what he would do. Expecting him to be rocket fit, I was slightly surprised when Scourge missiles began impacting on my ship. Light missiles suggested a kiting fit, so I guessed he would have minimal tank. A perfect target for my ganky 'Ranis !

I decided to try and bait him closer, where my scrambler would really ruin his day. Aligning back out to Nenna at max speed, I waited for him to start burning right after me. When he did, I turned off the MWD to speed up my turn, before spinning around and burning with an overheated MWD right at him. 60km quickly became point blank, as we roared towards each other at speeds of almost 4.5km/s each. Scram on, MWD off, AB on (reduce missile damage), guns loaded with Null ammo overheated and turned on. And I caught sight of my note too, which meant I actually launched my drones when I tackled him. Joy!

He quickly realised his mistake, and tried to get away from me, but it was far too late. With no propulsion he was dead in the water, and I soon melted through his hull.

Die fishy!

I made a valiant attempt to catch his pod too, but he was too fast with his warp out :(

I scooped the loot as he offered a "gf" in Local, which I returned before heading back to Nennamaila. It wasn't until I docked that I noticed what was casually sitting in my cargo.

Ohai Shadow Serpentis Disruptor
Well damn. I'd heard from fellow militia members that the squids were fitting lots of faction stuff after their recent cashout, but I wasn't expecting them to fit expensive warp disruptors to a frigate. Not that I'm complaining anyway, it means I can afford to fit up another Taranis when this one dies :D

Fly safe!

Sunday, 23 September 2012

That awkward moment when you have no kills

Well,  I do kinda have kills, and even couple of small brawls which I think are probably worth a quick mention if it wasn't for the fact that EVE-Kill is currently sleeping with the fishes. So technically I don't have those kills right now... (it's not official until it's EVE-Kill official!)

And before anyone says it, I'm not a massive fan of Battleclinic anymore, it feels a little clunky.

So call me obsessive/sad/lazy/stupid, but I'll wait to type up those skirmishes until EVE-Kill is back in our arms ;) In the mean-time I found a video of that capital brawl I mentioned in an earlier post, which is a lot clearer than me going "Erm there were Carriers, and Dreadnoughts, and lots of battleships. Seemed like a clusterfuck imo"

Here's the video link (Youtube)

I haven't seen the whole thing (i.e I didn't waste time looking for myself in it :D) but it's definitely the same fight. Gives you a good idea of what we saw when we jumped in!

Fly safe o7

Tuesday, 18 September 2012

Remind me why I keep you around?

I realised a few days ago that Zendrak isn't actually training anything worthwhile at the moment.

Okay, that's probably a bad way of putting it. No matter what, the skills he's training will be useful some day. A better way of saying it would be that he doesn't have a target at the moment. Something to aim for, to achieve. Originally, he was going to train for a Jump Freighter (like an Ark) after all the stuff he's trained up to now, but frankly they're damn expensive and I'm still pretty poor. So instead I started thinking of all the other things he could do for me. I decided to leave out anything directly PvP combat based (i.e No firing guns at other players, since I've already got Seraph for that).

It's like a Providence but more epic. Also it's got a sweet red stripe

Here's the things I could think of:

The List of Stuff

- Missioning Alt: Train up for a kickass Marauder and burn through missions for some pocket change. Paladins are sexual.

- Scanning Alt: In my short solo time in LowSec, I discovered that running Radar sites was fairly lucrative. It's tempting, but the randomness of the rewards would make it frustrating in the end I think.

- Mining Whore: I could just leave him AFK mining for hours on end, but that's pretty boring.

- Boosting alt: I've been tempted to do this a few times, but frankly my PC can barely handle two clients as it is, and I'm firmly in the camp that dual-boxing isn't real "Solo" PvP. So probably not.

- Corp Thief: I won't lie, this is seriously tempting. With the ability to fly an Orca, a Providence and all the mining barges you can shake a stick at, I'm certain I could get Zendrak snapped up by a foolish HighSec industrial corp and rob them blind. Fun, but I'd risk getting him targeted for suicide attacks and such afterwards if the corp are really psychotic.

- Incursion Pilot: No guns since I've done that song and dance with Seraph, but I could train as a Logistics pilot for a nice change of pace. Also Logistics ships are (fairly) cheap and it would mean I could join a NullSec corp someday as a Logi pilot if I ever wanted to test that side of EVE out.

- Capital pilot: Yes Archon, I'm looking at you.

- Super Trader: Meh, if I'm honest. I'm not terribly fussed about increasing my trade skills anymore, since it's fairly small-scale. It's an option though.

- Industrialist: This has never properly appealed to me due to the huge amounts of spreadsheets needed (it seems) to make a decent profit. However if I can get some tech savvy RL friends to give me a crash course in Excel and all that jazz, it could be interesting.

- Planetary Interaction person thing: Tried this in the past and my brain melted. Although now I've got corpmates who know what the hell they're doing, so I might bug them to tell me their secrets.

Then I ran out of ideas, though there's probably a load that I've missed.

In the end I decided to go with Incursion Pilot and Capital Pilot, with some Corp Theft on the side. I decided on the first two purely because they complement each other (As long as I'm flying a carrier anyway), and the thief bit is because I want to try robbing someone blind at least once in EVE.

I decided I definitely wanted to fly an Archon over the other carriers, which meant simply for ease of training I should stick with an armour Logistic ship, which meant in turn either the Oneiros or the Guardian. Being the shallow person I am, I went with the Guardian, because it looks more awesome.

Red and gold is always awesome
I quickly found some Logistics guides on the interwebs, and put a skill plan together, which totaled out at around 141 days, including Logistics V, Remote Armor Repair Systems V, and Energy Emissions V (all of which will set me up for later carrier training, since I'll need these skills to V anyway for the modules that carriers use). Sounds like a good deal to me! I also crammed in Cybernetics V, purely because +5 implants will be fairly safe in Zendrak's head for the time being. He's never in combat, and I always travel in a shuttle at a minimum (Living in Amarr around Zydrine Megacyte for even a small amount of time will teach you the value of a shuttle to protect your squishy pod), so my investment will be fairly safe.


In the meantime, Zendrak can infiltrate some nubbins corp and take everything that isn't nailed down.

And all the stuff that is.

And the nails.

Fly safe ;)

Wednesday, 12 September 2012

The little I can do

Like many new players, I had never spoken to Sean Smith, known as "Vile Rat" ingame. Infact I knew very little about him before now besides the fact he was a diplomat for Goonswarm.

But I say this now with the utmost sincerity; I wish I had known the man that EVE remembers today.

My heart goes out to his family, and all those that knew him, both online and off.

And to those that say EVE players have no heart, no emotion, that we are cruel bullies picking on the weak, I simply leave you this article, and the hundreds of heartfelt comments left on it.


Rest in peace Sean Smith. I hope you're in a better place, for what it's worth.


Tuesday, 11 September 2012

You've tackled a WHAT?!

Disclaimer: This was a long roam for me, and the shit hit all kinds of fans later on, so my recall may not be perfect. I am basing the majority of this post on jotted notes I made while flying around and the rest on pure memory, but if anything is glaringly wrong, or I got something in the wrong order, please feel free to comment/message me and I will attempt to fix it. Next time, I'll record it in bursts, so I have a stronger idea of what happened when :P

Yesterday evening, I was chilling in Militia Chat, while messing with cheap fits on EFT and wondering what to spend my LP on in the next few weeks (You know, standard procedure), when I noticed in Militia Chat that some FC called "Dopified" was forming up a T1 Frigate/Destroyer roam in a few minutes, and wanted to get an idea of numbers. Atleast twenty or so people X'd up straight away.

"Well shit" I thought to myself "This guy is either really good, or his fleets are hilarious. Either way, I want in"

I quickly X'd up too, while hopping in one of my cheap, hull-tanking, dual prop Atrons. I was introduced to this fit shortly after joining the Militia, and I love them. They're fun to fly, cheap to lose, and do decent DPS for what they are. A perfect Faction Warfare ship in other words! I started heading to the staging system in Heydieles, while the FC ran through the overall plan for the night on Teamspeak.

We would be roaming up some pipe I'd never heard of, which frankly isn't saying much (I still haven't got a proper handle on the local geography yet). Apparently we were going "the back way" tonight however, to avoid both gatecamps and neutral squid alts spotting us before we got some surprise attacks in. There was a fair amount of giggling in fleet at this point.

Aren't FW players so mature? ;P

While we were still forming up, Dopified gave all the new guys a crash course in organising your overview for a roam, which I was glad about because I spent most of my last roam locking my fleetmates by accident, which almost caused some embarrassing blue-on-blue incidents.

We eventually started moving after a good half an hour of messing around with ships to bring, how to act in fleet (e.g do not second guess the FC in the middle of a brawl), not speaking over scouts etc. Pretty obvious stuff, but some of the guys were fairly recent players and I guess it didn't hurt to run through it all. Also I was secretly relieved for a little help, since I'd never been in such a large fleet before (I think we peaked at around 35-40 people). We headed swiftly up the pipe, emphasizing covering ground quickly over rooting out squids who were dug in. If we couldn't get a fight within a minute of our scouts entering the system a jump ahead of us, we simply blazed on through. I enjoyed this approach quite alot, because it meant we were never sitting around getting bored.

After fifteen minutes or so into the roam, during which we missed catching a flashy Pilgrim by nanoseconds when he blundered into us on a gate, one of our scouts two jumps ahead of us called in a flashy Maelstrom landing on his side of the gate. The Maelstrom jumped the gate (towards us) and our scout followed. Dopified called for the Maelstrom to be pointed, and ordered the fleet to blaze to our scout's rescue. Someone shouted over Teamspeak as we landed that the Maelstrom had no guns fitted that he could see, so the FC ordered us to stay atleast 6km from it at all times (maximum T2 smartbomb range) We held at around 7km, and fired long range ammos into his shields. He was dual ancilliary shield booster fitted, so he took a while to die, but we caught him on his reload (both boosters) and he quickly exploded.

I think we only lost one ship and a pod to the smartbombs
We looted the wreck and kept moving. I snagged a Strong Blue Pill booster (which I later lost when my Atron died) and a couple of T2 mods.

Later on we stumbled into a Balkan Express Hurricane sitting on gate, a corp I've seen before around Pananan, where they have a reputation for dropping caps on pretty much everything. We engaged, fully aware he would have friends nearby, and not ten seconds later our scouts reported an enemy mixed Hurricane/Guardian gang coming in. We killed the first Hurricane as they landed on grid. Our FC then ordered us to switch to the nearest Guardian and get in close with high damage ammo (like Void and Hail). We were breaking the reps since he kept dipping into stucture, but our DPS was also getting steadily picked off by the Hurricanes and the reps from friendly Guardians started to hold him up.

 Also not helping the situation was a good ten or so people were holding range from the Guardian and not applying heavy DPS for some reason, which pissed off the FC no end. I went down in flames, as did most of the fleet, except for our scouts and a few lucky destroyers and frigates who managed to escape the "attention" of the Hurricanes.

We were ordered to reship, and headed back out again. I grabbed a spare Atron, and met up with the fleet in order to catch a squid Tornado gang which had been mentioned in an intel channel. We "stampeded" to where they were last seen, in the hopes of catching them on gate where they were vulnerable. On our way there we burnt past an (apparently) friendly BS armour gang and jumped into Oinasiken...

Right into a fleet brawl, where the very squid Tornado gang we had been looking for was sitting a few hundred kilometres off from gate and taking potshots at those in the fight. There were already carriers on the field, and someone was escalating, because dreadnoughts started dropping in too. It was utter chaos. I took lots of screenshots of course :D

Awesome looking fight!

Unsurprisingly,we were ordered to warp the hell off the gate by our secondary FC (since our main FC was reshipping), and regroup in the next system over (which I think was Nisuwa).

One day Archon... One day...

After some confused milling around from the fleet, Dopified returned and formed a plan. We would jump back in, and warp around the battle while attempting to catch vulnerable targets on the edge of the fight, and those who had warped out to repair/regroup etc. We started by scouting out the nearby planets for those regrouping. We soon found a couple of Tornados, one of which managed to alpha my face off when the fleet landed 60km or so off them. I flew off to reship into another Atron while listening to the fleet catch a fleeing Tornado from the group and melt him. Revenge!

By the time I returned we were wating at a random planet for our scouts to find us another target, which happened to be from the same Tornado gang as before, who had been caught at a customs office. This time I managed to not die horrifically to random artillery fire, and helped burn down the unlucky Tornado pilot. He was soon followed into the void by a Cormorant who landed next to us while we were brawling the Tornado. Of course, he was swiftly pointed by one of our Ares interceptors and bumrushed by everyone who was in range. We assumed he was a latecomer to the gang and got a bit unlucky with his warp-in.

We kept messing around, attempting to catch stragglers, until a scout suddenly reported he had tackled a flashy Vindicator jumping into Nisuwa from Oinasiken. There was a moment of shocked silence before we hit fleet warp so fast I barely realised what was happening. When we landed, we were ordered to jump gate, then close distance to the now tackled Vindicator, and scram/web him with guns blazing. Learning from the Guardian mistake earlier, we did so, with considerable cackling and cheers over Teamspeak.

He died much faster than I expected, but we had to loot and run incase his friends were incoming, which was done with lots of "WOLOLOL" in Local and suchlike. It was hardly sporting, but a bunch of the fleet was drunk anyway from what I could tell, so I doubt they really cared about "fair fights" and such at this point. I have to admit I was too pleased with a Vindicator kill to really care that it had required pretty much no real skill on our part ;)

(It later turned out the guy who looted everything decided to drop fleet and run, instead of contracting it the the FC, so everyone on the mail could get a share. We were a little pissed)

Not long after that, a second Vindicator was caught apparently attempting to leave or join the fight (seriously it was chaos, I have no idea who was attempting to do what) and we had a go at killing him too, but were quickly forced off the field by his friends coming to save him. It didn't matter though, because he was later caught by the other group of angry people dropping capitals everywhere, and we were still on the mail \o/

Second Vindicator gets blobbed, but his buddies start landing pretty fast :(

After that the fight seemed to die down, so we skirmished around with several squids who'd come to pick over the remains of the field, which had been heavily looted already by whoever had won the brawl, but there were lots of T2 Sentry Drones and suchlike scattered over several hundred kilometres. Of course we wanted the remains of the loot, and fought them off at each turn. We got a smattering of kills here and there, but with our targets spread over a such large distances, I only snuck onto a pod killmail that lots of people were whoring on.

After looting what we could the field, (which included me signing in my alt to grab some fighters and a capital repair mod from a carrier wreck) we jumped into Pynekastoh.

A decent haul methinks

We were engaged by a squid Navy Caracal as we came through, who was exploded in a short time by our rampaging frigates (before I could get there since I burnt in the wrong direction off the gate like a scrub). He soon came back with some friends, with himself in a Hurricane, and his buddies in a Thorax and a Rupture. All were taken down with minimal losses from our side, along with some help from a passing friendly gang. Go go noob blobs!

The fleet kept going, but it was getting late for me, so I thanked the FC for an awesome evening, and wished the fleet luck in getting some more kills before logging off to catch some sleep.

So yeah, that was a pretty epic evening. It's definitely saved my killboard, which up till then seemed doomed to stay on a diet on frigates that attacked me in plexes, and I had a hell of alot of fun skirmishing around the dramatic (and awesome) backdrop of a full blown capital brawl.

If this is a normal occurrence in the Gallente Militia, I doubt I'll be leaving anytime soon ;)

Fly safe!