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Odd wormholes, ratting Battleships and killing a Hulk

After Tuesday’s kills, we have a lot to live up to as we start our scouting on Wednesday. Anything we do now will surely be a downer. It wasn’t. I present to you a summary of the week!

Wednesday 1st August

Our first wormhole does not bode well – an empty Class 4 greets us, with a whole lot of signatures to scan. Scan we do, however, revealing a Class 3 wormhole. Jumping in sees… wrecks. A Megathron and Apocalypse also populate my Directional scan, indicating targets. Rather than launch probes, I hit my on-board scanner and use it in combination with my d-scan to pin the two Battleships to an Anomaly. I get Barrak into system with me and we both set up shop at a spot 200km from the ships.

In ur sites, watching u rat

We get a small fleet assembled in the C4 next door and jump them in as soon as myself and Barrak enter warp down to the unsuspecting Battleships. Cloaks are dropped, weapons are primed. We drop out of warp, pointing a Battleship each as our fleet initiates warp.

Guess who’s not going anywhere?

I come under fire, but take minimal damage as the rest of the fleet lands.

Ogre I Vs. Tengu. ROUND ONE. FIGHT.

Rather unsurprisingly, both ships explode, taking two pods with them. The kills signify the end to the rather short night for myself, so I log out till the next day.

Thursday 2nd August

There’s even more nothing in today’s C4 static. By that I mean there’s not many Signatures. There is, however, a Class 2 with a fair few ships in the tower.

Well that Corm is a bit tough, but I think I can take the rest

Before we can probe the system one of the Tengu’s warps off to an unknown area. We eventually resolve this to a wormhole, but not before the Tengu is long gone. Meanwhile, an Iteron Mk V is on scan, yet not at the tower with the other ships. Something to hunt! Probes are launched and he’s quickly found to be at a Gas site.

Having missed a Tengu kill, we decide to drop our full fleet on the poor Iteron. After a corpmate bumps him 20km by accident, of course.

GUYS WE COULD BE IN TROUBLE HERE

Despite an epic brawl previously unseen in the EVE universe, the Iteron explodes, pod with it. Having exhausted any hunting zones, I log for the night again.

Friday 3rd August

Friday gives me the oddest wormhole combination I have yet to see. We have 2 Null-security wormholes in our home system. The kicker? They lead to the same system.

Click to embiggen!

We spend all day running round the area chasing Ratters and other Ratters, before eventually heading home to scan our new static. The new chain is also devoid of life, but the new Inbound to our home is not.

Adhocracy Incorporated have just scanned their way into our C5, as evidenced by a Legion hanging around on scan for a suspiciously long amount of time. Our suspicions are confirmed when we resolve the wormhole and the Legion disappears. Our first scout, Wrathhammer, jumps into the wormhole and is immediately trapped by a Devotor which decloaks and bubbles up in our home, ruling out our chances of insta-collapsing the wormhole too.

We had several people cloaked here. We stayed cloaked for a reason.

Wrathhammer tries to jump home, but ends up too close to the wormhole to re-cloak safely. He managed to re-jump before the Tengu, Sleipner and some other ships decloak and catch him. Some 5 minutes later, he tries again and manages to escape safely. Phew.

OHAI

At this point one of our newer guys has warped his Drake to another POS but has bounced of the shields without noticing. The cloaked ADHOC guys have noticed, because their pilots have just re-shipped into a bomber fleet which just warped to one of our towers. Fortunately, our guy notices right as the Bombers decloak and manages to warp away. Just.

We chat with the ADHOC guys in local for 10 minutes (they’re good guys!), before they finally drop a Capital and close their wormhole. End of the night for us.

Saturday 4th August

The odd wormholes continue. Our static today leads to our sister Class 4 wormhole – Penny of http://www.tigerears.org/ lives here, though is offline by the time I log on. She’s spooked the neighbours though, by killing a Noctis already.

A Class 3 down the chain has a Viator warping from a wormhole to a tower, so we’re suspecting a miner out there. Why you would mine in a nullsec rather than the Grav site in your home C3 is beyond me, but OK.

We jump a HIC into the nullsec. He bubbles a Hulk, who jumps. He jumps back to the null when he sees our fleet. He’s now polarised. He dies. Nom nom shiny Shield Booster.

The night continues, as we try to goad the paranoid residents of the chain into our guns. Will be succeed? Probably not.

UPDATE

Silent Terror managed to decloak a Rokh on the C3a wormhole, but it appears it was Warp Core Stablized and escaped. That’s OK though, because we’ve waited for him to return, and return he did. Into our Fleet, of course.

CAN’T STOP THE ROKH

What an intriguing fit.

Dancing round a hostile fleet that outguns us somewhat, we’ve scouted a Tengu site-running in a nearby C2. So we launch a pure cloaky fleet and kill that too.

21:29:38 Notify El Oculto has initiated self-destruct of their Tengu, it will explode in 120 seconds.

Well that fit is absolutely terrible.

We head home to find the aforementioned hostile fleet trying to collapse our C5->C4a wormhole. Their Falcon cover prevents us from engaging their Orca, but they bail on it anyway. This actually wouldn’t effect us, since we also own the C4a!

Regardless, the Wormhole is now halved, so we finish the job and collapse it. Time for a new chain!

Hunting a familiar Tengu pilot

It’s been a rather slow week in the wormhole. Real life is impeding a lot of our ability to get things done right now, but we try!

An inbound Nullsec and Lowsec to our home both offer little of interest. The Null comes out in Delve space, in a system in the middle of takeover between 2 Alliances. A small battle is underway as I jump in to scout, but the 3 Nyx Supercarriers on scan deter me from trying a quick salvage run into the fight, which I seem to have stumbled upon as it was ending.

Even the few wrecks are being salvaged already

 

Our C4 static is empty of pilots, as is it’s own C2 static. A static High, inbound High and inbound C1 means it might not remain so, however.

A chart!

A couple of hours of nothing is soon forgotten as I jump into C2a on another scout run to find a Heron on scan, with Core Scanner probes out somewhere.

A quick check places it outside the POS that sits in system, meaning it’s sat decloaked at a celestial or scan signature. A check of both Highsecs and the C1 inbound reveal nothing, but further directional-scanning puts it at a planet!

Warping to the planet reveals the Heron sat 100km away, stationary. A check on the pilot reveals a corp I very much recognise.

Now, the reason I recognise this corp is because some good friends of mine are actually at war with them, with Patrick Kasper somewhat solo’ing half their corp. I let Patrick and his corpmate, Leper, know in Spooning that I’ve stumbled onto one of their War Targets in a Wormhole, and am politely informed that he is their CEO and to “KEEL HIM”

Mick is already en route in a Stealth Bomber for the insta-point on the Heron, but the Heron is gone by the time I rewarp near him.

His probes and ship are both gone, but his previous position at the planet indicates he came from the static Highsec Wormhole, so I move to watch it – hopefully he’ll come back!

I only need to wait for a few minutes, because the Wormhole flares as the Heron pilot returns.

In a Tengu.

He warps straight off, and Mick puts him at an Anomaly. We get some Alliance pilots in combat ships to hold in the C4 next door as myself and Mick maneuver for tackle.

We establish a tactical 200km off the Anom and watch the Tengu hit the second Anomaly spawn. At this point, I notice he’s looting the Sleeper wrecks and is flying to another one. I notify Mick of this, and we warp to the wreck he’s about to reach and engage.

Mick establishes initial point instantly as my Tengu suffers from a reconfiguration delay. I finally establish a lock, point and web and open fire as our other 3 ships are called in. The Tengu engages Mick hoping to drive him off whilst the Sleepers decide my Tengu makes a nice target. Our remaining 3 ships land and establish extra tackle, allowing Mick to warp out in armour.

At this point, I am 94.3% sure we have him trapped

The Tengu, previously tanking myself and Mick, now falls rapidly. As he enters armour, my own Tengu enters 10% shields and I warp out, unhindered by my allies bubble.

The Tengu explodes as I warp back, and the pod is bubbled. A ransom is offered but not taken, so we send him back to highsec.

Hopefully Patrick will kill him in something else before long!

P.S. As usual, Ganked is Saturday night. It’s Rifter Hulls. No excuse not to come! Details here!

What to do in a Wormhole

You’ve done it! You’re in a Wormhole with a corp or alliance (be it big or small) and finally ready to do something. Except… well… what do you do?

Well, there’s the obvious choice:

Scanning

The prelude to anything in a wormhole. Scanning is the foundation upon which all other Wormhole activities lie. If there’s nothing else to do, there is always something to scan. That last scan signature could be a new inbound Wormhole, leading to anything at all.

It’s very very easy to get bored of scanning, but if there is nothing else to do then scanning is your bet.

But let’s say you’re done scanning. The only possible route now is a lowsec/highsec connection. Well then I guess you could…

Run anomalies

This step depends entirely on the class of Wormhole you live in/have scouted, as well as the number of pilots you have online. Most Anoms in lower class wormhole (C1/C2, maybe C3) can be run solo by a careful pilot, but anything more requires more people. A good source of ISK due to salvage/loot, this choice obviously comes with its own inherent risks – anomalies are easy to scan down (not requiring probes) and this means a pilot can be easily jumped.

But what if you havn’t got the ships/people for Anomalies? Well…

Run Signatures

Ladars, Gravs, Mags and Radars are also a good source of ISK. Ladars and Gravs can be cleared very easily by a solo Drake up to and including Class 4 Wormholes (I have no experience with the highers) and the loot/salvage alone can net you a bit of ISK. Radars and Mags can be a bit tougher, particularly Radars. Even if you’re not planning to mine the gas or rocks, killing and salvaging the Sleepers can give your wallet that lovely little boost.

Mining the Gas or Asteroids in these sites can take some time, especially solo, so you need to make sure you’re on the ball with your d-scan and ready to run away. Don’t AFK mine these.

But you’re bored of this? Well there’s always the solid third choice.

Hunt

You are by no means the only other pilot about. Unless you’re in your home Wormhole with the static unopened and no inbound Wormholes (and you’re scanning constantly to make sure) a new pilot to chase can appear from anywhere at any time. The inactive C3 you were just in can have a whole slew of pilots log in and start mining a Grav the moment you jump out. There’s nearly always something to try to kill if you search hard enough.

Patience is the key in hunting in a wormhole. Due to their nature, you never know what else might be about. Watch for people reshipping to something cloaky at a POS (always bookmark observation points on a POS for this reason), use D-scan to judge what site people are at and always check for probes. One day you can get lucky and find a solo Orca and the next day another solo Orca turns out to be bait, and you might just get away. Or not. That’s life.

Bait hurts...

But what if, for whatever reason, you can’t do ANY of the things above?

Log out and do something else for an hour

Do you really need an explanation for this one? It’s the big X at the top right of your EVE window.

Bonus activity – write a blog post about what to do when there’s nothing to do

Through Newb Eyes – Living in a wormhole

Wormholes are one of the strangest system types in New Eden. They are dangerous, unpredictable and random. They can also be the safest systems you ever pass through. Some of the best PvP in EVE can be found here, where Wormhole mass restrictions limit attackers and a lack of local means anything can appear (or disappear). A week of nothing happening can change with one lucky directional scan hit that spies you a Tengu.

There’s a vast difference between pillaging/roaming wormhole space and actually living there as well. Having lived  in a Wormhole for close to 2 months now, I feel it’s time for a brief TNE article on living out of a POS and my d-scan being my best friend.

Wormholes are grouped by class, with Class 1 having the easiest sites and Class 6 having the hardest. The class of a Wormhole also affects the mass restrictions leading to it – I believe Class 1 wormholes can’t even allow Battleships.

My corp/alliance lives in a Class 5 Wormhole with a Class 4 static. This means that at any one time, there will be a wormhole leading from our space to a Class 4 wormhole. Class 4s are good for running Anomalies (most can be done with 3 Tengus) and often connect to other wormholes, which is good for hunting. However, C4 wormholes are probably one of the worst for PvP since they never have a wormhole leading out to normal space (known as “K-Space”) which means there’s normally not a lot of through traffic.

That’s enough background stuff. What’s it like actually living here?

Firstly, it is important to remember we are not a big WH alliance like K162. We’re pretty average, I’d say, but we don’t go on massive null-sec killing roams.

Secondly, my alliance is primarily US based, whereas I’m EU. This means I’m usually the first around after Downtime and do a lot of the initial scanning.

To start, living out of a POS is an odd experience. We rely on each other for ammo and mods if someone runs low until we can do a market run, and we don’t have all our ships to hand. I have to open 2 separate windows to board a ship and then another two to fit. I have to go through the hassle of dragging bookmarks from my folder to my cargo before I can put them into a Bookmark can (note: corp bookmarks don’t help alliance members)

A typical day involves me checking notes to see if our current static should have died out, then launching probes at one of my many safes, and scanning down todays wormhole “constellation”. My day could easily end here. Many scan trips have revealed something constellations with not a single tower, leading out to a dead area of nullsec. However, just because the WH constellation is dead at 2pm does not mean it will be so at 5pm. Many times a new wormhole has appeared, spitting out a scout for us to shoot or follow home.

Upon finding a new wormhole, the first thing to do is hit the directional scan and look for ships and towers. Second is to bookmark the return wormhole. Only then to I break my initial decloak and recloak off the wormhole.

If there are ships on scan, my first task is to establish whether they’re at a POS and whether they’re piloted. If there is indeed a POS and forcefield on scan (the forcefield indicates the POS is online) I use d-scan to pinpoint the moon it’s at, warp to it and bookmark an observation point. These bookmarks are the only ones I save from each day.

More often than not, ships on scan are empty at a tower or piloted at a tower unmoving. It’s when there’s a ship on scan *not* at a tower or other probes are seen on scan that we actually perk up and start prepping the PvP ships. Probes on scan usually results in us plonking a scout on our new inbound wormhole to see what is being used to scout (shiny T3 scouts are fun to explode) and anything else results in further scouting to establish what we field and if we even have the numbers to field a force. There’s usually only 3 or 4 of us max in my timezone, so we have to judge our moves well.

The removal of the “Jump” API in Wormholes has changed my scouting quite a bit as well. Whilst before I could check to see if someone had jumped into or out of a Wormhole (and therefore judge a wormhole’s lifespan or the systems’ activity) now there is that little extra “unknown” factor to scouting. Whilst a pain, this makes perfect sense.

Once we’re done scouting, if the Constellation appears empty we usually take the time to run some sites in the Class 4 static wormhole, or even run Capital escalations in our home. Both make decent ISK and allow me to buy new ships to scout or PvP. If there’s no sites to run, we try to collapse the wormhole to spawn a new one. This is usually achieved relatively easily, so long as we’re on the ball. Once a new wormhole is spawned, it’s back to square one, as it were.

And then we start again.