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!

Saturday, 8 September 2012

Fighting and dying

Holy jesus, Orcas are incredible. Like seriously, where has this ship been all my (EVE) life?

My Orca, "Homeward Bound" (Also EVE is really pretty and stuff)

I bought an Orca a few days ago in order to help my move to Black Rise, and it's been utterly indispensable during this time. It aligns and warps faster than my slower-than-a-pig-stuck-in-treacle Providence, and you can hide the really expensive stuff in the corp hangar. Also you can carry rigged ships (like my precious assault frigates) in the ship maintenance bay, meaning you don't have to destroy rigs, or take up precious cargo space. You can even refit your ship using it. Oh, and if you've trained the relevant skills, (and have a POS handy), you can make it work as a ghetto fleet booster. It just does everything.  It's an excellent ship, and if you're undecided over buying one, just do it. You won't regret it.

Anyway, Orca worship over, it's time to talk FW.

"For the Federation or something!"

I've already had my first pod lossmail in ages while flying in FW for less than four days. I found it pretty funny at the time though.

I was with a small frigate/destroyer gang, and we'd spent the evening getting blue-balled by the squids. Our FC, MetalDev, got bored while flying us home, and decided to engage a neutral Magnate (or something like that) on gate. Of course, then guns blew him to shreds and we all had a good laugh. He then gave me command of the fleet while he went to fetch a new ship. Ten pairs of ears turned to me.


Luckily for my dignity, a squid Merlin turned up at that point, 100km off-gate. Pretty much instantly we started conferring on the best way to catch him. This is something I quite like about FW fleets. The vast majority of players are decent solo PvPers in their own right, so everyone always has some good ideas to throw into the general melee of discussion. (Not that I'm saying that gang PvPers are clueless idiots, it just seems solo players are more willing to speak up and give their opinion). This meant that I had five or six people giving me some options to play with. In the end however, I said "Fuck it" and burned for the Merlin, head on. He warped off to a nearby gate, so I ordered the fleet to follow, and hold on gate. As we landed, the Merlin jumped through and I followed him, half scout, half hero tackle.

Right into a squid cruiser gang.

MeYeah, yeah I'm jumping after him
MetalDev: Try and catch him on the other side
Me: Will do. Oh shit...
Most of the fleet: Lol what?
Me: Squids. Lots of Squids
Everyone: You're dead man :)
Me: Lol yeah don't follow

Deciding I might just make it back to gate, I overheated my MWD, and spammed approach on the gate. Annoyingly I was scrammed within about three seconds, so my MWD cut out. Even so, I managed to slowboat to within 4km of the gate before my Thrasher assploded. Laughing over TS, I spammed the warp button on my "Selected Item" window, which was currently the Sun. I managed to double click the window itself instead.

Well crap.

For anyone that doesn't know, double clicking a window is a shortcut for minimising it. My selected item window vanished, and I before I could right-click warp, an Enyo had pointed my shiny green ass.


But it's not all lossmails. Last night, I tagged along with an impromtu gang/roaming gatecamp, and managed to whore on a couple of kills (everything else died before I could lock it/reach it, to give you an idea of the speed stuff melted). I helped kill a squid Drake, and a few minutes later, a friendly Atron accidentally decloaked a flashy Falcon, who seemed to have warped 20km or so from the gate while under cloak.

This kill was fairly funny, because both sides seemed to stare at each other in stunned surprise for a few seconds before shouts of "POINT THE BASTARD!!" came from just about everyone.

He was then swiftly swarmed by our frigates and torn to pieces, with me close enough to sneak on the mail.

I almost felt bad for the Drake pilot

So, yet more fun and games in Faction Warfare! I'm told our LP dump is coming up in a few weeks, so hopefully I'll make some stupid ISK from that to fund a few expensive ships. Which I'll then lose of course :P

I've always wanted to try a Navy Issue Vexor...

Fly safe !

Thursday, 6 September 2012

Fatal attraction

Dear reader, I'd like to tell you a little story.

When I first heard about EVE, I decided that capital ships were clearly the most powerful ships in the game, and therefore flying and owning one should be a major priority for me. After reading through several ship descriptions, I decided I wanted a carrier, because I liked the idea of launching hundreds of fighters against a helpless BS fleet and murdering the lot of them.

I bet those of you who know anything about capital ships are having a good giggle at "Noob-Seraph" right now.

Then when I started playing, I found out very quickly that capital ships could not be used solo unless you like having extremely embarrassing lossmails plastered all over the internet. I discovered carriers were only useful as part of a larger fleet, so in my disappointment I angrily declared to my corp (at the time) that Seraph would never fly a capital ship in his EVE life.


And I've held myself to that promise so far, and I will continue to do so until I quit EVE, or something similarly "terminal" happens. But that hasn't stopped me wanting to fly a carrier ever since. Watching videos such as "Clarion Call" by Rooks and Kings, seeing my corpmates chat happily about how they're planning to fly a dreadnought/carrier/whatever in a few months, or even just reading comments on forums about how useful capital ships are, has made me want one really bad. But I can't have one. I promised myself, and I like to think that as an honest person, I keep my promises...

But hang on a minute. I have a second account. Technically, I wouldn't be breaking my promise if Zendrak hopped into a carrier...

But what about the training? The cost? The deep, abject fear of losing it in a horrific fiery death of lols and failure? Hell, when or why would I actually fly the damn thing?

But all these questions can't change the one thing I know.


Archons are freakin' sexy.

Fly safe ;)

Tuesday, 4 September 2012

Come at me bro, I'm on a seafood diet!

I'm having a great time in Faction Warfare. No seriously!

I've spent most of my first two days learning mechanics; such as plexing, capture ranges, how warp-ins work in regards to fleets already in plexes, how to defend systems, how to attack systems, why we shouldn't attack said systems (no seriously), what fits work surprisingly well due to these mechanics, what ships are good for certain plexes, how to catch those pesky Incursuses without guns... The list continues on into infinity. It's a whole new way of fighting, and it's pretty damn fun to both learn, and be a part of it.

Yes, that word which is so foreign to the majority of EVE's population, fun.

The Gallente are really nice too,  this guy gave me free Thrashers! 
The rest of these two days, I've spent organising the logistics of my move. For some insane reason as my alt passed through Amarr, I decided to splurge on a new PvP fleet for my FW adventures, along with lots of spares because they'll probably get shot to pieces fairly fast. This fleet includes, but is not limited to:

- 20 x Atrons
- 20 x Condors
- 20 x Slashers
- 15 x Punishers
- 15 x Rifters
- 15 x Incursus
- 15 x Merlins
- 25 x Thrashers (I don't think this is enough)
- 5 x Ruptures
- 5 x Thoraxes
- 5 x Vexors
- 5 x Mallers (bait bait bait bait...)
- 3 x Cyclones
- 3 x Brutixes
- 2 x Drakes
- 2 x Hurricanes
- A smattering of Assault Frigates (e.g some Wolves, Retributions, Jaguars, Vengeances)

Now this was fairly expensive (I think maybe 400-600mil ish), besides the fact that I haven't actually fit all of them because it would probably bankrupt me to do so. Instead I'm fitting up three or four of each at a time and then flying those until they get brutally exploded.

The problem is, our staging system Nennamalia (affectionally called "Nenna" by my corp) is two jumps into LowSec from Caldari HighSec. Two jumps between two groups of rather angry people with guns. Right through a very active warzone. So obviously I'm not risking my freighter through that (since my alt is still in Adamas Anima, and therefore an valid target in LowSec for anyone who's a bit bored), but on the other hand flying almost 200 (I think) ships one by one will most likely drive me mad. So I looked to Black Frog Freight. At first their prices made me wince, (65mil for a 360km3 cargo, two jumps into LowSec). Then I realised, they're putting a Jump Freighter on the line for my cargo here, I think they're entitled to a decent pay. So I set up two contracts for 65mil each, which covered the vast majority of my armada. The rest I wanted to move out myself, so that I had something to play with while I waited for the rest to be delivered.

The majority of my new armada. I bought a few more after this too
And play I did. I spent most of my time wandering around both enemy and allied systems in my Thrasher, scaring off gunless frigates on both sides and doing some plexing myself. It wasn't until earlier today that I had my first taste of real combat.

The shooty bit

An Incursus and a Griffin were hanging around Akidagi (1 jump out of Nenna), and I was keeping Militia Chat updated with their riveting activities. Eventually another militia member (Davir Sometaww) turned up in his Catalyst, and we started chasing the squids (which is what the Gallente militia call the Caldari. I assume it's because Caldari sounds like "calamari" which is, you guessed it, a type of squid). After some messing around between sites, they went into a Minor Plex, at which point we both followed. I landed directly on-top of the Griffin, and swiftly tore it to pieces. We'd agreed beforehand that the ECM bird could not be allowed to get a jam off, so I was quite pleased to have nailed him before the engagement had even started. Dave even managed to whore on it ;)

Then we started chasing the Incursus, who even while warp scrammed was outpacing our destroyers. Dave only had an afterburner, so he could barely keep pace with the agile frigate anyway, and my microwarpdrive made turning an absolute bitch. So after some quick turns and fancy flying, the Incursus managed to shake free from our scrams, and opened up his warp drive while in deep hull. (I'm fairly certain he was dual repped, because he'd drop alarmingly into hull, then zoom back up to around 40% armour, and then yo-yo between the two. A pair of destroyers will do that to a frigate...)

We both gave a grudging "gf" to the Incursus pilot in Local, before I had to log for a while.

When I came back, I decided to do a little plexing and see what I could scare up. I talked the time away in Gallente Militia chat while lazily circling the buttun. (The buttun is the thing you have to orbit, or atleast sit next to in order to capture a site. A Minor Site takes 10mins to capture, which is enough time for a good conversation or two). So with around two minutes left on the buttun, I noticed Local suddenly had a lot more squids in it than before.

I uhmmed and urhhh'd a little, wondering whether I should wait it out and try to take the Plex, or run like a little girl when they warped in. Then I remembered what my new CEO had said earlier, when I had hesitated to engage a Hookbill sitting on a gate (he jumped out when I started shooting).

Mirana Niranne > It's only a thrasher. Go balls deep my friend ;)

Suddenly determined to hold my ground against the onrushing seafood menace, I stared them down as they warped in, landing 60km off my buttun.


I started to align out to Nenna, before deciding to turn the other way, and aligned to a planet instead. It made sense in my head at the time, but I can't remember why I did it. They started burning right at me, their fishy rage reaching across the silent void of space. Within ten seconds or so, they were upon me, with guns blazing. The first guy to reach me was flying a Merlin. I kept microwarping away from the gang as I fired at him, trying to give myself as much time as I could away from the full force of their guns. Amazingly, I managed to burn down the Merlin in time for his Thrasher buddy to get in my autocannon's falloff range. I turned my guns to him and kept the overheat on, praying that my guns wouldn't burn out just yet. He also melted, but I was in deep armour (while flying a shield tanking Thrasher) and I was fairly certain death would come quickly. The next target in range was a Rifter, so I switched my guns over to him and kept them hot. I just shredded him down to hull when my guns cut out. Woops...

I'd forgotten to watch the heat levels on those things.


I watched the smoking Rifter peel away, my Thrasher still alive for a few more precious moments. I wondered if maybe I could still escape, but my hurried spamming of my MWD was useless against the continued scrambling power of another Merlin...

Then the steadily smoking Rifter pilot (still retreating) managed to whack me with a wrecking shot while I was in deep hull. My ship exploded around me, and I quickly warped my pod back to the Nenna gate, before shakily typing a "gf" in Local, which was returned by the majority of the enemy gang. (GO GO HONOUR FITES) With a huge smile on my face, I warped back to my home station and docked up.

That. Was. EPIC.

I think I've found my new addiction: Solo vs a Gang. My first try was decent I guess, but I reckon I might have killed that Rifter, and probably forced off his buddies too if my guns hadn't burnt out. Till next time!

Oh and of course a few minutes later I went back out to the same Plex and captured it anyway. No fishy Caldari are blocking my LP fountain. ;)

Also you can see in Local there was a 30man BC gang kicking around
that I almost landed on top of when I left system D:

Fly safe !

P.S Not getting GCC for attacking Caldari Militia members is also really goddam nice. Just thought I'd mention it

Sunday, 2 September 2012

Choosing a side

Well that happened much faster than I anticipated.

I'm in!

I've applied to join the war between the Gallente Federation and the Caldari State, (fighting for the Gallente) and I have been accepted. Even to me this sounds like an odd choice, but I have my reasons :)

First and foremost, I think it's safe to say the Minmatar/Amarrian war is being absolutely dominated by the Minmatar (according to the Amarr themselves, various blogs and forum posts). My FW alt was enlisted with the Amarrians on my original "test the waters" foray, and my god were the Amarrians completely out of morale. Here's the basic premise from several conversations in Amarrian Militia Chat.

Me: So guys, you reckon we can bounce back :) ?
FW Guy 1: Sure, right into a brick wall of f*ggot frigate plexers and massive SFI blobs.
Me: Damn, is it really that bad?
FW Guy 2: LOL it's worse
FW Guy 1: Ya 
FW Guy 2: We take a system, and the Minnies just make billions crushing us and taking it back

So obviously I didn't want to join such a cesspool of despair (also there's a difference between fighting as the underdog and downright stupidity), but at the same time I didn't want to add to the problem and join the clearly winning Minmatar. So instead I looked at the Caldari/Gallente war, which I'd heard almost nothing about in comparison to the Minmatar/Amarrian war, except the fight was pretty even on both sides. My initial impulse was to join the Caldari, purely because they're allied with the Amarrians, and I wanted to try and help their lost cause in some way, but I couldn't find any decently sized Caldari FW corp that I liked the look of and I met the requirements for.

It's cool, we love each other really
So then I started looking at Gallente FW corps, of which there were a much wider collection. I quickly warmed to the corporation "Noob Mercs", part of the "Monkeys with Guns" Alliance. I met all the requirements, except one. A pretty major one.

You must have either positive or 0.0 standings with the Gallente Federation to join

And despite my initial thoughts, this isn't some role-playing thing, this is an actual FW mechanic that literally ties the hands of the corps involved. The average standings of  all the corp's members determines the corp's overall standing to the Gallente Federation, and if this average drops below (I believe) 0.0, the corporation in question gets kicked out of FW. Which obviously they don't want to happen, and the easiest way of avoiding this is making sure all members have positive standings.

Now, that's totally fair by my reckoning, but the problem was that my Gallente standings are absolutely horrific, due to spending my early EVE "career" running missions for the Amarr Empire, missions which often included me shooting the crap out of Gallente NPCs.

Leaving me with a "raw" standing of almost -5.24 with the Gallente Federation. Ouch.

Regardless, I joined the corp's public channel and started grinding Gallente Level 1 missions, thinking this would fix my problems (not quite realising this would take me forever and a day to fix my standings through these missions). Through the public channel however, I started chatting with the members (and CEO) of another corp within the alliance, "Rabid Ninja Space Monkey Inc.", and they informed me that running missions like I was would take me eons to grind the required standing. Instead they reccomended FW missions, which gave huge standings rewards in comparison.

I was confused for a minute or so. How could I run FW missions without being in FW? Then the CEO, Mirana Niranne informed me that he would be perfectly willing to take me onboard in his corporation, since his Gallente standings were sky-high, and would average out mine. The only requirements placed on me were that I then raised my Gallente standings (for when the next pilot with godawful standings came alongand proved that I wasn't a total retard when piloting Interceptors as fast tackle in a gang (which appears to be my new job). I quickly agreed to these terms, and had an impromtu interview over TS, where Mirana gave me a crash-course in FW mechanics and explained the basics of what I needed to know in order to not die horrifically. I was then accepted into the corp, and told to send an application when I was ready.

So now I'm part of Rabid Ninja Space Monkey Inc, fighting for the Gallente Federation. I've been directed to our staging system in the Black Rise region, and I spent most of this evening shuffling ships around, and making freighter runs back and forth. Hopefully within a few days I'll be on the frontline, kicking pods and pewing Drakes ;)

Fly safe!