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Downing a Carrier

A new static greets me today. Barrak has been kind enough to scan it down for me but has to go AFK, so I start scouting. Or would, if a couple of bluescreens on my laptop prevented me from doing so. Bloody graphics drivers.

Eventually, I manage to log back in and start scanning. Josh is online as well, but remains in Home whilst I plod away. The empty C4a leads to an equally empty C4b. How predictable. Next up is a C5 which is likely to be empty and dull and boring.

Except there’s ships on scan. There’s also a tower, which is also predictable. However, a quick directional scan shows a Thanato, 2 Tengus and a Vindicator out of said tower. They seem to be at an anomaly!

I say “at an anomaly”. What I mean is “400km from it”

A little unsure, I wait for one of the Sleeper Battleships to die before warping to the wreck to investigate further. The Thanatos is triage, and is repping all of the other 3 ships. As I chat with Josh about how we could proceed (bomb their salvager) the enemy fleet finishes the first wave, the Vindicator swaps for a Moros and the next wave starts.

Josh and I are unable to summon anyone for assistance and these guys are taking ages with their site. Sad at a missed opportunity, I log to do other things.

Until a few hours later, when Josh pings me on Gtalk. Silent Terror is on, bringing his Bhaalgorn, and the hostile fleet is ratting again. MUST LOG ON.

Mick has joined us, and as we assemble so does the rest of Greater Realms. Riyu, our glorious CEO, tries to make an appearance but his connection kicks him back out. Valon logs on, as do Barrak and Firefly.

The enemy are fielding 2 Moros, a Thanatos, 3 Tengus and a Vindicator. We assemble 5 Guardians, a Bhaalgorn, a Hic and mixed DPS to counter, with yours truly flying a Guardian.

Our form-up is a little too slow, however, as our scout reports the enemy fleet has cleared the anomaly and warped to their Tower. CURSES. Fortunately, they still need to salvage, so none of us are surprised when their Noctis warps to the anomaly. We are, however, surprised by a Thanatos joining him.

“Fuck it”, says us all, “Let’s go for him”. Go for him we do.

We jump. We warp. We land on both.

The bubble goes up, the Noctis is primaried. ECM and Neuts go onto the Thanatos. The Noctis is being repaired, of course, and takes a fair bit of firepower to down.

The Carrier is jammed by the droneswarm, allowing us to pop the 300m Noctis, spewing a pod into the empty void. With his +5 implants.

Now it’s a battle of attrition. Can we break the Carrier’s repairs before his friends arrive? IF they arrive, of course.

Of course, the Thanatos pilot tries to take the easy way out and initiates a Self Destruct.

As we wear him down, he suddenly remembers that Self Destructs still generate killmails.

Then our brave foe remembers he has Triage Mode, promptly repairing himself back up.

Fortunately, our Bhaalgorn is on the case. The occasional repair cycle meets our DPS head on and for a while his Armour fluctuates back and forth. Still no sign of his corpmates.

Then we breath a sigh of relief, structure bleed.

My chat window has hidden in fear of the targets

The Carrier explodes right as a Proteus has a quick spy on us at range, before running away again.

The Carrier is down, the pod with it.

We even hold the field for a good 20 minutes to get a hauler and salvager in to steal everything, netting us an extra few hundred million for the corp.

Not bad for a Friday Night.

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Surprising Tengus

There’s a Null inbound to our home, it appears. These are normally hilariously boring, since everyone and their mother runs to a POS whenever neutrals enter local. There’s a reason why they do that, which we prove shortly.

Jumping in first finds a lone Thanatos on scan with wrecks and no tower. Before I can pinpoint him, he’s gone. Boo. Further scouting puts him at a POS with another Thanatos.

There’s some other people in system, along with a station. The Tengu on scan, however, is not at this POS and appears to be moving. I drop probes, and scan him to a… belt?

I warp at 100 to have a quick scout, and he’s sat at 0 ratting.

Welp.

One of our newer members is about and prepares a bomber as Mick prepares a Typhoon Battleship – the neuts being a key factor in ambushing this Tengu.

I rewarp, land at 0 and engage as Mick and Ren jump through and initiate their own warps.

"That's a funny shaped rat"

The Tengu’s active tank shrugs off my meagre DPS, but that’s ok, because then Mick and Ren land.

"Didn't want that tank anyway"

I deactivate my point for the pod as the Tengu explodes, zapping some subsystem skillpoints, but the pilot instawarps his pod away and logs off. Nothing shiny, unfortunately.

We return home and begin scouting our constellation, finding nothing. Before we roll, I poke my Tengu back out into the nullsec to see the Thanatos ratting again! I scan him to an anom before he warps, bookmarking it and returning to set our trap.

The plan is thus: myself and an Arazu will warp in in about 20 minutes once the Thanatos resumes ratting (we hope) to establish tackle and then an shield-fit neuting apoc and 2 Basilisks will land as I reship for a curse and the Arazu for a Moros Dreadnought. Simple.

We roll the static while waiting and re-assemble on the wormhole to the Null, when a Helios jumps into us from the same corp. Foiled.

We decide he’s not going to rat now they have scouted us, so we jump our own caps through the nullsec to close the wormhole.

Onto our static, our scout reports 5 Tengus, wrecks and no towers. Further investigation reveales that they are Remote Repair fit Tengus.

This time we assemble a Falcon, Curse, Geddon and Onyx with a Proteus as initial tackle. However, the Tengus warp off as we land. Leaving a Noctis, which we promtply kersplode, the pod warping before the Onyx even lands. A nice 220 million ISK kill there, with a decent drop. A bomber decloaks after a while, bombing our remaining Falcon as he waits cloaked, but doing insignificant damage.

I log whilst others scout the constellation, returning some hours later to a load of bookmarks and noone around.

There’s a lowsec near high a couple of jumps through the wormholes, and I need a chance to move a couple of my expensive ships out for when I leave, so I move my Sleeper Tengu and Basilisk out, the 2 wormhole systems of C4a and C2a empty of ships.

However, on my return a Tengu is now on scan in the C2 with the tower. My shuttle is a bit useless at scouting, and as I return home for the Scangu Mick logs on. We both head to the C2, now helpfully close to the end of its’ life, and I jump in first. My d-scan greets me with a Tengu and 4 wrecks now on scan.

Mick reships for his Typhoon as I d-scan the Tengu to an anomaly and establish a 250km bookmark whilst I wait on Mick.

Eventually Mick is on the C2, so I warp down to a wreck and engage the Tengu.

Cloaky TG strikes again!

Again, the Tengu laughs at my missiles. It doesn’t laugh so hard at my reinforcements.

A little backup can go far

This Tengu too explodes in a fireball, knocking off some skillpoints. The pod instawarps away, the pilot logging at his tower soon after.

Mick returns home as I head out to highsec. Ganked is tomorrow, and I have a really interesting fit that Captain Hurrdurr has sent me.

It’s this.

You may swoon now

Details here as usual. I hear EVE Radio is covering it. Might be fun to show 😉

Choosing a target

Today sees me logging in first, again. As I start probing, however, a friendly face logs on. Aii is stuck out in highsec, so I need to find a route in!

There’s no inbounds in our home system today, a C5 inbound that appeared during last night’s capital escalations dead by now. Our previous C4 static is also dead, so I wipe corp bookmarks and start anew. It doesn’t take me long to find it, but C4a today is empty with a C4 static itself. Fortunately, C4 statics are pretty easy to scan down, having a unique signature size. I sweep for inbounds, finding none, before scanning and jumping into C4b.

Ah, now we’re getting interesting. A lone Scorpion and POS light my D-Scan up, but warping to the tower reveals the Scorpion empty. Curses. C4b also has a C4 static, so I scan it and jump in, revealing an empty C4c. This one has a C3 static, which usually lead to k-space, so I keep scanning. No inbounds are found, so into C3a I go!

C3a greets me with a Gallente Battleship wreck on scan, along with 4 Ogre IIs and a couple of towers that appear to be offline. The system boasts a Lowsec static and a Black Hole wormhole effect in place.

Warping to one of the towers quickly reveals its reason for being offline. A host of Cruise Missile Batteries and Torpedo Missile Batteries surround the abandoned tower – the defences effectively useless in a Black Hole system, which boosts ship velocities and reduces missile velocities in kind. I start scanning for the seemingly abandoned Ogre IIs, hoping they lead me to the BS wreck. Since the Ogre IIs are unclaimed, I assume that the killers of the Gallente Battleship had to leave in a hurry. Resolving the signature hit, I warp to the drones to see an unspoilt wreck waiting for me!

A check on the owner of the wreck reveals no PvP losses in this system, leading me to believe he lost the Battleship to Sleepers. How embarrassing. The wreck contains a fairly cheap Faction armour repair as well as a Shadow Serpentis energized adaptive nano module, but the rest is standard T2 loot. Not worth a lot, all told, but ISK is ISK!

I scan the low, finding myself in Old Man Star and drop bookmarks for Aii, who promptly comes home. A C3 is scanned in OMS, but it holds nothing of interest. With nothing going on, I log out till the evening.

Constellation as I logged out

Logging back on some hours later has Mick also online. I decide to sit at C4b’s tower, but an online Dominix there simply logs off. Mick goes scouting into C4c, where he notes probes on scan. He scouts further into the system, revealing an Anathema, Nighthawk, 3 Drakes and a lot of wrecks.

Hmm.

The Drakes and Nighthawk are at an anomaly, and the Anathema has cloaked. I swap my Scangu for a Manticore bomber, preferring the “insta-lock-on-decloak” of this ship and head over to join Mick, who is now sitting cloaked 160km off the ratting ships.

Shhh... be very very quiet...

Another alliance member, Rihanna, moves to join us but lacks a suitable cloaky vessel – opting for a PvP fit Loki and sitting in C4b, ready to jump in and help if we engage something.

There’s no chance we can hit the 4 ratting ships, so we decide to wait for their Noctis. Mick deploys probes and resolves a new inbound – presumably the source of these ships. However, a Retriever and Covetor are now on scan, and it isn’t long before Mining Drones are on scan too. Intriguing.

The ratters finish their site, warping towards another. One Drake  warps elsewhere and soon disappears from scan – presumably gone back to their Wormhole. It isn’t long before a Noctis shows up on scan, along with an Imicus frigate.

The Noctis appears to be in an anom we haven’t located, and the Imicus is replaced by  a second Covetor which appears in the same direction as the other 2 mining barges. An Iteron V appears, and locates itself with the miners.

At this point, we have to pick a target.

  • 2 Drakes + Nighthawk at an Anomaly
  • Retriever, 2x Covetors + Iteron Mk V at  a Grav site
  • Noctis at the Anomaly we have bookmarked.
  • Try and snag one of their scouts on a wormhole.

Whichever we pick loses the others, and we have no idea what reinforcements they could have. We have to make it quick. So we obviously pick the Noctis.

After 10 minutes of waiting, the Noctis appears in the Anomaly we’re sitting at cloaked. He’s 160km away, and appears to be unmoving – allowing his Tractor Beams to do the work for him.

There's always someone watching

We let him salvage some wrecks, but he still doesn’t move. This works to our advantage – a moving Noctis is harder to hit than a stationary one.

We bookmark a wreck he tractors to him, and both warp in and engage.

The Noctis is in armour by the time we even notify Rihanna on comms, but it’s dying too fast for her to warp and engage too, so she holds out of system.

A good thing too. The Noctis pops easily, but the pod escapes even my sensor boosted Manticore. I hit the “Loot All” button on the wreck, but my Manticore’s cargo is already bomb laden and I only grab a handful. Mick grabs some more, but he shoots the wreck to deny the rest. As Mick does so, the Nighthawk and Drakes land, but we both easily cloak and warp back off to the tactical. Gone as soon as we appeared.

The Drakes and their mining barges warp back to their Wormhole, which I scout as a C2, whilst the Nighthawk remains in the site. It’s a tempting target, but if it’s running C4s it’ll likely be brick tanked and we simply don’t have the DPS to kill one before its’ allies arrive.

The Drakes return, and one of them starts salvaging, albeit slowly. They’ve probably refit for PvP, but are desperate for some ISK return since we kind of blew it all up.

There’s not a lot else myself and Mick can do at this point, so we head home for the night.