Thursday, 28 June 2012

Back with a bang?

Well it's been over two weeks since my last post, and I have no idea where the time has gone.

Don't worry (if you were), I'm not dead, I just haven't been signing in that often due to RL sucking up my time. I've pretty much only been signing in on my alt to manage my ever increasing market orders, which appears to be making me a fair amount of ISK. I wouldn't call myself "space rich" yet, but I think a few more months and I'll be well on my way.
My current sell orders are around 2.4 billion, and my wallet is at around 600mil, though that will be going back down to around 40 - 50mil soon when I restock stuff running low :P Obviously I don't actually have this money yet because it needs to sell. But it's a nice change to my usual "Oh god, I'm getting poor, spam missions!".


But enough about economics. This blog has always been mainly focused on my PvP "efforts", and yesterday I managed to catch our corp (and blues) a fairly big fish. This is definitely my biggest kill to date (both size and ISKwise), and suffice to say it was fairly exciting for me ;)

The pew pew bit...

I had spent the few hours before in "our" LowSec system (of course, flying my favourite Vengeance), which had been seeing a decent number of neutrals bumbling through recently. This seemed like fairly easy PvP to me, e.g. If you can kill it, leave POS and do so, if not, mess around on trade alt and wait for the nasty piwat to leave. After closely missing out on a Jaguar that had been buzzing around, I decided to sign out in our POS shields and go have a social life (lol).

A few hours later, I signed back in as Zendrak to update prices, then switched over to Seraph to see if there were any neutrals ratting in the POS system. Just me and a neutral. Awesome!I pinged D-Scan, then tabbed out to put some music on. I assumed I would have to warp around a bit to find the belt he was in. When I tabbed back in, I saw I had picked up a ship already. I knew that there was only one planet near our POS, so that cut down the search immensely. Then I read the ship type.

"Scorpion Navy Issue"

My jaw hit the floor.

I read it again, then refreshed D-Scan, not quite believing what I was seeing. It was (obviously) still showing the same ship type. I sat in the POS for a few precious seconds, trying to work out what the hell was going on. Already my suspicious side was screaming "BAIT OR TARP, BAIT OR TARP!!!!", but I was going all X-Files on this, I wanted to believe. I quickly span my D-Scan around at 30 degrees to the various belts, worried that the SNI pilot may hit his own D-Scan when he saw me in Local and then scarper.

I soon narrowed him down to Asteroid Belt 4. I hit warp and prayed he would be close to the warp-in. I landed not two kilometres off his hull. o.O

I had CAPs lock on for pretty much the whole fight
Within seconds I had him tackled, and settled into orbit at around 6km. I had the vague idea of keeping my speed high to minimise his missile damage, but it turned out he was firing Fury missiles, which have terrible explosion velocities vs frigate sized targets. Nothing happened for about five or six seconds, and then suddenly I was swarmed by medium drones. I started working through them while screaming for help in every channel that had a corp member or blue in it, fully aware that while I could tank this guy, I was not going to kill him any time this year.

EVE System > Channel MOTD: If it's not us or blue, Shoot it. Much appreciated :)

Seraph Minayin > SNI IN POS SYSTEM
Seraph Minayin > TACKLED HIM
Seraph Minayin > GET HERE NOW
Hayna Sakeno > too far away
Hayna Sakeno > Ordion Solar System
Seraph Minayin > FUUUUUU
Seraph Minayin > WHERE ARE OUR BLUES
Achad Banman > sorry way up by amarr
Seraph Minayin > DUDE GET HERE
drol tack > jita here =(
Seraph Minayin > SNI KILL ?!
Seraph Minayin > PLEASE
Seraph Minayin > DEAR GOD
Achad Banman > what are you shooting at
Seraph Minayin > HE'S ON 86% SHIELD AFTER LIKE 400 ROCKETS!
Seraph Minayin > PLEASE GUYS :'(
Achad Banman > i realy want to but im stuck in my archon
Seraph Minayin > :'(

At this point, I realised we were at an impasse. Seemingly nobody was around to help me kill this thing, and since the pilot was in a starter corp, I assumed he had no buddies coming running to help him. He also couldn't kill me, since his drones were all dead and his missiles were doing next to zero damage to me. I was scared he would realise he could self-destruct without me being able to do crap about it any second.

So I did what any self-respecting "pirate" would do, and resorted to some bluster. I pretended I had corpies on the way, and asked for a 300mil ransom. Frankly, if I wasn't going to get a killmail out of this, I atleast wanted it to be profitable. Unfortunately the pilot informed me he only had 50 million in his wallet. Disappointed, I simply replied "meh", and continued to sadly orbit him.

Then our Intel channel flashed.

drol tack > i jumped cloned im 8 out
Seraph Minayin > THANK YOUUU!
Seraph Minayin > 50/50 if theres faction lewt
Seraph Minayin > be fast
drol tack > rgr
drol tack > what are you in?
Seraph Minayin > veng :P
Seraph Minayin > he cant kill me
drol tack > yup ima die =P
Seraph Minayin > ?!
Seraph Minayin > he's pve fit
Seraph Minayin > just run if you get low
drol tack > kk

Drol was on his way in a Cyclone! A new determination filled me, and I prayed that the SNI pilot wouldn't remember his self-destruct button...

Damn it's nice watching shield tanks edge towards doom...
When Drol was only a few jumps out, one of my corpmates, Jerry, signed in. Luckily he was already in the system, and he was in his Curse! I gabbled madly at him until he worked out what the hell I was on about, then warped to me, lauched his drones, and started helping me kick the battleship in the face. A few minutes later, Drol jumped in system, and added his DPS on top. The SNI was falling much faster now, and we were almost guaranteed a kill!

Right up until the Scorpion pilot remembered his self-destruct button.

drol tack > fuck hes trying to self destruct
Seraph Minayin > ....
Seraph Minayin > COME ON
Seraph Minayin > FUCK THIS
Seraph Minayin > overheat
Seraph Minayin > overheat guns right now
Jerrybear > done dont have much for guns
Seraph Minayin > dont burn out mind

Our overheated weapons made much more of an impression on his shields, and soon we were cutting through his armour, then hull.

Then there was a lovely blue flash.

We had killed it!

Yeah, we even salvaged it. Waste not want not and all that :P

Drol got final blow, which I was a little miffed about, but to be honest I was just glad we'd killed it. Can't be too greedy ;) We were also a little sad there wasn't anything shiny, but I was pleased with the killmail after all that drama. I gave a gf in Local, and meant it. That thing had quite a tank which these screenshots don't really do justice. Maybe it was just our bad DPS, but it did take us a while to break through his peak recharge.

So that's my exciting story for this week, and I'll quickly drop some notes about what I'm planning to do next, just incase you care :P

- I've finally got around to training blasters, so I'm planning to take out a couple of blaster Merlins soon. I've heard they're much more deadly now!
- I'm currently burning through that twelve day cap skill (that I can't remember the name of), since I know I'll avoid it even longer if I put it off now. 
- After that, I'm going to train Gallente Frigate V, and try out the Enyo, Ishkur and Taranis, before getting some more rocket/missile/hybrid skills and trying out the Hawk and Harpy. 
- After that, I'll come back in a full circle to the Amarr Assault Frigates by training lasers and having a go at flying the Retribution. 
- However, I'll still have a fair amount of support skills to burn through at this point before I finish my frigate plan, and head on to the next step.

Which of course means cruiser specialisation :P

Fly safe!

Tuesday, 12 June 2012

He's got a brand new car, looks like a Jaguar...

If you don't get the title, listen to
"Buck Rogers"by Feeder ;)
I totally thought of that post title while trying to find myself dinner at the local supermarket. No doubt I looked insane when I started laughing to myself infront of a family. Awkward. Anyway...

After an embarrassing loss to a T3 gatecamp earlier this week, I managed to fly my brand new Jaguar Assault Frigate around LowSec without get horrendously murdered, and I also managed to pick up a kill while I was there :D

I started out by jumping into Gademam from HighSec, a habit I developed after losing around 4-5 ships to the frequent camps on the Amdonen gate. Local was pretty much dead in all the systems I went through, until I met a Cyclone going the other way on the Ami/Daran gate. Remembering that my Cyclone has trouble fighting smaller targets, I decided to tail him in the hope he would engage me either on gate, or while aggroed by rats in a belt (every bit of DPS helps vs bigger targets :P).

Instead he utterly ignored me as I followed him back to Gademam, at which point I gave up on him fighting me, and held my cloak over the gate. Within a few seconds, an Ishkur landed on the gate and jumped through. Excited at the prospect of another AF vs AF fight, I followed him back through into Pananan, and we sat on gate next to each other for a while. At this point, RL reared its ugly head, and I found out I only had a few minutes to fight this guy. Not bothering to mess around, I warped off to a nearby planet at around 70km and hoped he would follow. I waited for about 15 seconds, before realising he had probably assumed I had warped to the belt. I started to write "I'm at planet VI" in Local when he landed about 50km off me. Obviously he was fairly competent with the D-Scan.

Instead I quickly mentioned I just wanted some quick pewpew before I had to log off, and wished him good luck. I'm happy to say he wished me luck back, and we started to burn at each other.

Yes I killed another Ishkur, boring I know ;)
I had decided already that getting close to his blasters would end with me sitting next to a mangled wreck, so I set my orbit to around 7km and loaded my Fusion ammo, remembering the Gallente resist hole was fairly large (even using double resist rigs to plug it). I hoped my web would slow him to the point where I could maintain range, and loaded my Optimal Range Disruption Script just to really mess with his damage projection. I almost loaded Tracking Speed Disruption, before I half-remembered that small blasters have among the highest base tracking speeds, and decided not to risk it.

At 10km from each other I turned on my web, waited a second, then hit my scram. Overheating my guns I tried to concentrate on holding range from those face-melting blasters. I was worried with how much damage his drones were putting out, but I broke his shields before he broke mine, so I felt I had time to do some serious damage to his armour. His blasters were missing the majority of their shots from what I remember seeing, which was a blessing because his Hobgoblin IIs were enough of a problem on their own.

By the end of the fight I was low on cap and low on armour. I had switched to manual piloting to keep my transversal high (minimise his blaster damage) and as a result I had dipped a little too close to his guns a couple of times. Suffice to say, the damage I received skyrocketed at these points ;) He was in deep hull (I think around 40%) as my armour was stripped away, but frankly Gallente ships have a tendency for "secret hull-tanking", and I was worried my hull would drop before his. I spammed my rep to keep it cycling a few more precious seconds as my cap ran dry with increasing freqency, and hoped my guns would get a few lucky shots in to save my ass. They did so just as I had decided to bail on the fight like the big coward I am.

My hull was at 94% when he exploded, and it was a seriously close thing. A few more volleys from his blasters and my ship would have been no more than radioactive sludge. I typed "gfgf" in Local, and received one in return \o/

One more kill under my belt, and an awesome fight with an honourable solo pilot makes for a good evening I think :P

Friday, 8 June 2012

Hand me that batphone!

Earlier this week, Adamas Anima was wardec'd by a corp with only one person in it. He was a 2003 player, and we assumed he'd simply chosen to attack us because we looked like easy targets (we mine fairly often to supplement our income. May aswell take advantage of the mineral spike). No doubt he'd seen several of our members out in asteroid belts a few days running, and assumed he could murder a few dumb carebears.

One of our larger mining ops

Our CEO, Myopic Thyne, was having none of this. Here's an extract from our corp mail regarding the (then incoming) wardec.

There is no honor in a 1v1, get that out of your head, the only thing that matters is his destruction and humiliation. Do not feed him any kills, this means do not fly any sort of untanked, non-combat ship without some sort of scout ahead of you, and try to avoid missioning alone. If you must mission alone keep an eye on Local and dock if you see him.  Remember, do not give him fair fights; crush him.

Suffice to say, we were not going to take this wardec lying down. Awesome!

Within an hour of the wardec going live, we'd also called in three of our blues to help kick the crap out of this guy, and before the first day was up, our scouts had found him, and we were camping him in a station in Bashyam. I was in a Myrmidon (never really flown it before), and we had a mixed group of corpies and blues. Final ship count was something like my Myrm, a Drake, Loki, Manticore, and a Vexor. We started smacking it up a little in Local:

Sarayu Wisdom > Come out and play, this is lame
Seraph Minayin > I love how he's willing to attack defenceless miners but runs scared when we bring some combat ships
Sarayu Wisdom > Typical noob who thinks he knows how to PvP

Yeah I know, our scathing insults probably had him quaking in his pod.

It didn't really matter because he totally ignored us for about half an hour, so we entertained ourselves by bumping random haulers that undocked, and doing unspeakable things to the deceased...

Seraph Minayin > :(
Drol Tack drops the corpse in a can next to me
Seraph Minayin > Corpse Female \o/
Myopic Thyne > Now I know why you wanted the corpse.
Myopic Thyne > -.-
Seraph Minayin > lolol

After some more messing around, I docked up to check if he actually was still in this station. Within seconds of me docking, I saw his name disappear from the "Guests" panel of the station services tab.

"Damn it he logged" I thought. Then a quick glance at Local showed he was still online. Comms suddenly lit up with:

"LOL he's undocked?!"
"What's he flying?"
"Uh oh, Damnation"
"Oh whatever, start shooting"

I would actually like to fly this someday
Everybody camping on the undock locked him up and opened fire. I undocked as fast as I could and joined in. The Damnation was webbed, scrammed, painted and then assaulted by drones, projectiles, missiles and torpedos. Even so, we were shocked with how fast he started going down. His shields were vaporized within seconds and we were cutting through his armour at an alarming rate for a Command Ship. His armour was at 80% within only 5-10 seconds, and we were watching with slack jaws, hoping that he might be dumb enough to aggro us in such a vulnerable position. No such luck.

He docked sharpish.

Lots of sad noises on comms.

He then undocked again, this time in a shuttle, and warped off to Chamemi (which is a LowSec system) before we could catch him. We followed him as he jumped through, then lost him on the other side. We bump each other on the gate while wondering what to do. One of our blues notices there's only one station in system and warps to it.  He finds our wartarget sitting on the undock. In an Archon.


This feels a bit out of our league, but whatever. We quickly cobble together a plan to damp his targeting range down as we warp to the station, and one of our corpmates (Mr Estrawdin) comes running with a Keres stuffed full of damps. While we wait for our EWAR, the Archon randomly aggros against us, starting with me, before switching to Wisdom in the Drake and then rotating around as we dock up to avoid getting melted by fighters.

After a few minutes of this, Estradwin arrives and starts damping the carrier's ass off. We start trying to work out where the Archon's targeting range ends, when suddenly Estrawdin gets aggroed by the carrier and is blown to pieces by drones and fighters. Damn it.

We begin hashing out another plan when a Deimos undocks. We all eye it warily, guessing he's buddies with our wartarget. The Deimos lights a cyno. Lots of "Uh oh" on comms. We assume that our wartarget has called in some friends to help ROFLSTOMP us, but we stick around anyway, wanting to see what comes through.

There's a massive cyno flare and a Nyx Supercarrier jumps in.

Two more huge cyno flares reveal another Nyx followed by an Archon.

Comms go mental and we're ordered to dock the f*** up.

Everything goes quite for a second or two. Then Wisdom mentions it looked like the supers were engaging the WT's Archon.


Then realisation strikes: "WELL SHIT, CAN WE GET ON THE KILLMAIL?!"
PL to the rescue!

Everybody spams undock, but the Archon is already long dead judging by the huge wreck just chilling outside and the "gf gf" in Local. The Deimos had already looted the wreck, so we docked up again and waited for the nasty Supercarriers to jump back out or log off. While they might have murdered the Archon for us, that doesn't mean we're friends ;)

We check the Nyx pilots, and find out they're from Pandemic Legion. Lots of lols are had, and we congratulate them in Local.

Seraph Minayin > holy crap
D ROYAL > sneaky                             <- Wartarget seems to have assumed we batphoned PL
Seraph Minayin > don't look at us
Seraph Minayin > not our supers
Twisted Girl > :P
Twisted Girl > I just happened to be in system               <- Nyx pilot iirc
Sarayu Wisdom > :D
Seraph Minayin > cheers for murdering the archon though
Seraph Minayin > we loled
Sarayu Wisdom > ya

So anyway, we're all sitting in the station, a little put out that we couldn't get on the mail like big whores. Then fleet chat flashes:

Myopic Thyne > Estrawdin!
Myopic Thyne > You damped him right?!
Myopic Thyne > Before you died?
Seraph Minayin > HOLY FUCK
Sarayu Wisdom > If Estra didnt dock before he died...
Myopic Thyne > PLEASE tell me you were damping him before?
Mr Estrawdin > Yeah?

We switch to Local.

EVE System > Channel changed to Local : Chamemi
Seraph Minayin > POST THE MAIL
Seraph Minayin > please?
Sarayu Wisdom > we wanna see the mail
Sarayu Wisdom > I'll pay ya 50 mil to link us the km
Seraph Minayin > o.O
D ROYAL > ;-)
Aloda > are you guys going trick or treating??!!!...
Elazord85 > something like that                          (One of the Nyx Pilots)
Seraph Minayin > so how about that killmail? :P
Orii Saissore > 
Jstar999 > pay up
Seraph Minayin > DUDE
Seraph Minayin > thats totally worth it
Mr Estrawdin > sweet!
Seraph Minayin > Adamas on a carrier killmail \o/
Mr Estrawdin > as a pod but still there lol

Totally worth it.

So we got two of our pilots on the mail, which has sent our ISK efficiency through the roof for this month. Suffice to say, it was an interesting evening.

Also one of our blues made me laugh with this comment:

drol tack > well, it is nice to see they hotdropped something bigger than a frigate with their supers...

And of course, within an hour we received a message from CONCORD.

Corporation IX Retracts War Against Adamas Anima
Sent: 2012.06.06 23:13

The war between Corporation IX and Adamas Anima is coming to an end. Corporation IX has retracted the war against Adamas Anima. The war will be declared as being over after approximately 24 hours.

Fly safe ;)

Tuesday, 5 June 2012

It's all just pixels in the end

Our corp has a public channel (Mundens Bar) where totally random people can drop by and we can chat with them, either for recruiting or just socially. One of our more regular visitors said something the other day that got me thinking, and it's something I can't really explain.

We were discussing ships/funny kills and all the crap surrounding that. So therefore to a lesser extent we were also talking about losing those ships. iwinyoulost had lost (oh the irony) his Sentinel not an hour or so before, so obviously he piped up with:

iwinyoulost > I''m still mourning my sentinel :(
iwinyoulost > When it died it looked at me like "WHY!?" and i was like " D: "

Of course we had a bit of a laugh at that, and the conversation went on. But it stuck in my head for some reason, and I couldn't work out why until later in the day. Then it hit me.

Why do we care?

It might not be the earthshaking epiphanies that some people have, but it was enough to make me wonder about it, and by extension, write this blog post. Because frankly, when you get to the very heart of the matter, EVE players as a whole are getting emotional over what is essentially a sequence of numbers in a computer.

It's quite hard (in my opinion) to nail it down exactly. I guarantee if I said, "Think of your favourite ship" to any player who's been playing EVE for atleast a week or so, they could name their favourite ship. It might be because it looks cool, it may be because it's been with them for weeks/months/years and they haven't lost it, it could even be that they've had an awesome string of PvP victories in it and pulled through by the skin of their teeth. Everyone has their stories.

Whatever the reason behind it, we all have a favorite. Infact, mine isn't my Vengeance as you may expect. Infact it's this little beauty.

What? I can like industrials if I like...

Yeah I know, odd choice. But this ship is the oldest ship in my hangar, I've had it pretty much since I started playing EVE. It's a pretty weird story about how I got around to buying it actually (well ok not weird, but fairly interesting. Ok it's not even that interesting but whatever :P)

When I first started the game, I spent hours reading through the back stories of all the different factions, and the differences between them. One thing that seriously stood out to me was the fact that the Amarr used slaves. "Well hey" I thought to myself "Wouldn't it be cool if I could be a slave trader?". And so, exploiting the differences in slave prices between systems, I started earning ISK trading slaves. It wasn't much, but I was having stupid amounts of fun doing so. Then I realised I needed more space to carry more slaves and make more profit. Which meant a new ship.

A quick internet search told me the Iteron V was the biggest hauler, but I didn't want to train Gallente Industrial V, because even skills two days long were aeons for me, and I wanted a new ship now. Some more internet searching eventually led me to the Mammoth, with a short train of Minmatar Industrial IV. The irony wasn't lost on me that slaves (likely to be Minmatar) were being transported in one of their own ships, so I called my Mammoth "Traitor I".  But after a few weeks I realised that slave trading was worth pretty much nothing compared to missions, so "Traitor I" became the lovable "Chunky", and I hung up my slave trading boots for good.

All my other ships from this period are either exploded or sold, so my Mammoth is my "last link" to my days as a noob (though arguably I still am a noob). Therefore the reason I care is because of the memories it triggers, and that's why it's my favourite ship.

What makes you care about a ship?

Friday, 1 June 2012


Here's a weird little fact about me, if I don't write up a blog post every couple of days or so, I actually feel quite guilty until I write a new one, which is why I'm writing this right now.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not so vain that I assume I have hundreds of people waiting with baited breath for my words to reach the internet. It's more I have the vague feeling that if I'm going to waste people's time with my ramblings, I can atleast be consistent about it. Nobody likes an infrequent blogger! (Unless they're terrible, but I would hope I'm not in that camp :P)

So... pretty....
So what has been keeping my beautiful bald head from EVE these past few days? A mixture of exams (and revision), nice weather, lots of new game releases that I want to try, and the knowledge that I'm training some fairly long skills. I've still been on EVE pretty frequently, but it's mainly just to keep up with my market orders and to chat with corpmates.

But anyway, the waiting is over, and my alt can finally fly his awesome Providence. I took a bunch of screenshots of my first flight, which happened to be from Jita (where I bought it) back to Amarr, and it's such a beautiful ship. I always liked the Providence, because it reminded me of that Rebel Transport in the original Star Wars trilogy (you know, the one the Rebels use to escape Hoth?). If you compare them side by side, it's like CCP took inspiration from Star Wars. There's worse things to copy I guess!

See what I mean?

So now Zendrak is finishing up Amarr Freighter IV, and then I'm getting a load of agility skills to speed up the align time of the Providence, because it turns like a pig knee-deep in golden syrup. For anyone wanting to buy/use their own Freighter, I'll warn you right now, they're slow. No seriously, they are slow as hell. I don't just mean align times, the warp speed is the kicker. My maximum warp speed is 0.70AU/sec. 100AU warps take around two minutes, not including aligning in the first place, which is about 40-50 seconds. For comparison, most ships in the game warp at between 3AU/sec and 6AU/sec, depending on the size of the hull etc. Interceptors can warp at 13.5AU/sec if I remember correctly, which is pretty damn quick. But the good news is, it's pretty relaxing flying such a huge ship, and I've already used it to transport a load of crap for my corp. Yay huge cargoholds!

For the entire trip, I had that "On the way" song from Ice Age in my head

Seraph also has some new toys to play with, in the form of the Wolf and the Jaguar. Yes, I finally got around to training Minmatar Frigate V, and since I already have Assault Frigate V, they're quite a force to be reckoned with. I have two Wolves fitted up, a brawler and a kiter, one which is stupidly expensive in order to make the fit work (less CPU need for faction stuff, sigh) which I'm planning on tweaking in a few days. I also have a shield Jaguar fitted up, which I tested out yesterday against a Hawk. It turned out that Scourge Rockets really love large signature radii, especially when it's my second lowest resist and when the Hawk gets a kinetic bonus. Suffice to say my shield buffer melted fairly quickly, but I managed to pull range and GTFO. Definitely a nice ability to have after the "Brawl to the death" style of my Vengeances.

I'm hoping to take out these new ships over the coming days and get some awesome kills and good fights, before eventually get them exploded in varied and hilarious ways. (I've decided to stop jumping into Ami straight from HighSec, because it's camped about 99.999999% of the time, and losing ships to Vigilants and the like makes me feel sad inside :P) I'm definitely looking forward to flying the brawler Wolf I've been tinkering with, which looks like a DPS powerhouse in comparison to my Vengeance, which is more of a "tanky bitch".
The Wolf - A Rifter with 33% more awesome (i.e another gun)

Chances of dying gloriously in a huge fiery ball of bullets and missiles? I'd estimate 85%
Chances of having loads of fun while doing so? Definitely 100%

Fly safe ;)