Sunday, May 31, 2015

Failure with a small PvE gang

Zappity was sitting in her Myrmidon in Vard. She took it out for a spin, escaped two Garmurs with the aid of the MJD and then promptly died to a Stabber Fleet and his Deimos pal. I nearly killed the Stabber to death but, sadly, he chose the way of the dishonour drone.

I'm finding the lowsec meta a bit difficult at the moment. I think it is partially because the meta is shifting away from solo again but mostly because I just don't have the time to find good fights right now. So after losing my Myrm I decided to take a short detour to Lustrevik, that mission running haven. I jumped into Loot Sweet Loot, my double rep Incursus, and sought out some shiny, big ships.

I soon found a small gang running Level 4 missions: Vargur (probably a bit too tough), Rupture using T1 drones (oh yes, a real possibility) and Comet using T2 drones (a bit of a worry). I started shooting their MTU. This is the only possible course of action where an MTU is involved. When it became clear that I was breaking through the remote reps the Vargur aggressed. I tackled him before systematically killing all his drones. Then the Rupture aggressed! This is the one I really wanted so I switched tackle and went into a tight orbit before killing his drones, too.

The Vargur began repping him (most unfair and very frustrating) so when a convo from the Comet pilot opened I told him that the Vargur was very brave to risk such a valuable ship for an MTU. I wanted him to warp off, leaving the Rupture to die. He refused to do so, but the Rupture managed to cruise out of rep range all on his own. Suddenly his shield was down, and then his armour! Half hull!

Unfortunately, he realised what was happening and started making his way back to the stationary Vargas who I began to suspect was in Bastion. At this point I should have tried bumping the Rupture away from the larger ship. But perhaps I'm in the realms of fantasy considering that I had only a humble afterburner Incursus to work with.

With the Rupture again back at full shields, I re-evaluated the field. The Comet was orbiting out of scram range and I had no web for range control anyway. The Vargur was too tough to break. The Rupture was unlikely to make the same mistake again - probably time to move on. I think I need an Enyo for this. The added deeps would really help.

The Comet made the decision easier by finally aggressing, something he should have done much earlier. The combined damage was too great for me and I had to depart, tail between legs.

I gave them a gf and congratulated them on not losing a ship before continuing my conversation with the Comet pilot. They were a new gang and he was trying to teach them the fundamentals. I recommended against getting the Vargur to aggress in future and advised a re-ship strategy.

That was great fun. Lots to micromanage, no ECM, no dogpiling, and a reasonably balanced engagement (i.e. a billion ISK worth of carebear ships vs my little Incursus). Good stuff!


After warping away I realised that I had been very remiss in not announcing myself properly to the locals. "Hello, I am Zappity the Mostly Fearless. I am here to inspect your wrecks for juicy loot and to destroy any who dare oppose me! No ship can stand against the mighty Incursus!"

Suddenly, a rose in the form of Rosco Train suddenly grew from the, um, mud heap. He remembered this thread and we chatted for a bit about solo endeavours before he challenged me to a duel. Now, I'm not usually big on duels because the pre-arranged nature removes half the fun. But in this case, how could I refuse?

We met at the sun in T1 frigates - cliched but true. He wisely warped in at 100 km in what I assumed was a kiting Kestrel (not good news for my utterly predictable blasty Incursus - I bet you couldn't have guessed). I quickly warped out and back in at range, landing almost on top of him. Somehow I managed to land a scram with an overheated afterburner and the rest, as they say, is history:



GF, Rosco. Who knew that highsec could contain such gems? 

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Killing some noobs with a Myrmidon

I went for a roam around Ishomilken and was disgusted by the number of link ships hugging stations and gates (CCP, please add a weapons timer to links) as well as hordes of stabbed farmers as far as the eye could see. It was just one of those days when everything seemed to annoy me so I did the only rational thing and complained about it loudly on the forums where it could be promptly ignored.

I decided that it was time for a move. I have always preferred the sultry red tones of the Min/Amarr zone. Perhaps it reminds me of my youth, running missions in Lustrevik. Or perhaps that first time I ventured, trembling, into lowsec.

I pondered the map and decided that Huola was as good a place as any. It is reasonably central in the southern part of the map, adjacent to highsec for easy imports and within jump range of Amarr. (Yes, I bought a jump freighter. No, I'm not telling you which character is piloting it. Yes, it is because I don't trust you.)

I started the long journey from Ishomilken in a Myrmidon. This is not because the Myrm makes a good travel ship but because I was looking for fights. There were loads of frigates around but not a single one wanted to fight me until I arrived at my destination.

One jump out of Huola was a friendly low skill frigate gang in a Griffin (grr), Executioner, Rifter and Slasher. Perfect, except for the Griffin which frankly had me a bit worried. But I warped to the large plex anyway.

They were quick off the mark! I barely had time to settle in on the beacon before they landed, swarming over me. I locked the Griffin and was just about to tackle and web him when his first jam landed. And the second, and third, and fourth and then I lost count. Honestly, what frustrating mechanics.

I eventually remembered to launch my drones and set them aggressive. They began killing one of the ships and it wasn't long before the first wreck appeared. I was surprised at that since I thought Ogres needed a web to properly apply damage to frigates.

Then, finally, the Griffin missed a cycle! I locked him, scrammed him and double webbed him good. Foolishly, he had set a close orbit and was still within easy reach. I took enormous satisfaction in killing him. And then, methodically, I killed the rest of them.

I admit that wasn't a particularly fair fight. But bugger 'em, they brought a Griffin!



Friday, May 8, 2015

More l33t vintage Zappity

A poor Procurer paid the price in Providence:


He didn't warp away in time. After I killed him one of the locals called me a "vampire" but I think he was just confused about which game he was playing so I let it pass.

A couple of systems over I caught a ratting Dominix. And killed him. Those battleships are so nice and easy to scan down:



By this stage I was getting a bit uppity about killing these Provi ratters and couldn't resist having a go at a Tempest Fleet Issue who was obviously looking for a fight. Unfortunately, my dual boxing skills are absolutely rubbish and the inevitable soon occurred. This is a bit embarrassing but I did promise to be honest in this thread.

I started my l33t performance by clicking the wrong button and Zappity started heading in the wrong direction. Unfortunately, I didn't notice this because I shifted my attention to the Legion. The Legion was promptly scram-kited to death. While this was happening, Zappity woke up and started heading in the right direction. She got into scram range just as the Legion died, barely a scratch on the TFI.


Frankly, this was something of a relief because I could concentrate on what I was doing. I got into a tight orbit on the TFI and started chewing away at him. The neuts were pretty bad, though, and the small injector (I had swapped the medium for Ion blasters) just wasn't cutting it.

I struggled with cap, injecting just enough to keep a web and scram active part of the time. The drone dps was still pretty good but my tank against a ship like the TFI relied on getting into orbit. And the bugger kept pulling away.

We both crept down into structure before I capped out again. He pulled away and walloped me at zero transversal. Ouch.


That was a great fight after the Legion died. I think I'll stick to the lone Stratios in future. The only ship that my lone Stratios couldn't have killed was that miserable Raven. Who I didn't find again! The mining ships were obviously no challenge. The Cyclone would have died anyway. The Prophecy would not have survived, and even the Domi wasn't injected and would have died eventually with a single neut applied.

More to the point, I don't enjoy the multiboxing-ships-on-grid caper. It is stressful, I am not good at it and I don't like having to lumber two fighting ships around. I like it even less than not being able to kill the occasional ship.

But I got a little distracted there. To get back to the situation at hand, I escaped with both pods and made my sad way to Amarr. They really should have bubbled the gate and killed them, too. I know I would have after that pathetic performance.