Thursday, June 25, 2015

I have not lost any more Stratioses

I have not lost any more Stratioses. I switched to the Svipul and have been losing them instead.

[Svipul, Svipul active 4]

Damage Control II
Nanofiber Internal Structure II
Gyrostabilizer II
Gyrostabilizer II

10MN Y-S8 Compact Afterburner
Small Electrochemical Capacitor Booster I, Navy Cap Booster 400
Pithum C-Type Medium Shield Booster
Warp Scrambler II

150mm Light AutoCannon II, Republic Fleet EMP S
150mm Light AutoCannon II, Republic Fleet EMP S
Small Diminishing Power System Drain I
200mm AutoCannon II, Republic Fleet EMP S
200mm AutoCannon II, Republic Fleet EMP S
[Empty High slot]

Small Ancillary Current Router II
Small Anti-Thermal Screen Reinforcer II
Small Anti-Kinetic Screen Reinforcer II

Barrage S x3000
Republic Fleet EMP S x3000
Republic Fleet Fusion S x3000
Republic Fleet Phased Plasma S x3000
Nanite Repair Paste x100
Navy Cap Booster 400 x33

I lost the first one when I found a ratting carrier and decided to solo him. What can I say - I was curious! First he tried to kill me with Curators (I mean, honestly, sentries at zero) which I ignored while chipping away at his armour. But then his more competent friend arrived in another Archon and very quickly killed me with Praetors. I didn’t even have time to align out. But I suppose I was asking for that.

After giving up on the carrier idea I found a Thera exit to the top of Catch, the CVA part. There were lots of nice, NPC kill-rich systems on dotlan; I was like a moth to a flame. I first caught a Loki sitting in the middle of nowhere which, unfortunately, escaped when my connection lagged and I stopped orbiting. Frustrating!

One system over saw a Myrmidon come out to play. I spent some time merrily killing his drones until a Stealth Bomber decloaked 30 km away. He was in the same corp and quickly started to send torpedos my way. This didn't really make much difference (because torps) but it was a good opportunity to try and snare a bomber. I tried to look casual as I gradually widened my orbit and then overheated the afterburner for an approach. But my adversary was worthy and understood what I was up to, warping away before I could tackle. When the Myrmidon repped back up to full armour I became bored and moved on. I clearly didn't have enough DPS to break him.

About a minute after I jumped into the next system a familiar dscan result appeared. A Gila was stalking me! I jumped a couple of systems down the pipe to find a quieter spot and, sure enough, he followed. We fought on a gate where I quickly died. Those Gila drones are tough, especially the Augmented ones. I headed back to Amarr via Thera and a fresh Svipul was soon winging it's way back to the Catch connection. I would have my fill of Catch residents!

The next time I logged in I only went three jumps before a small defence fleet came to greet me. A Caracal, Stabber and Atron were sitting on the gate waiting for me with yellow-boxes. One of them convoed me, first asking whether I was friendly ( and then asking whether I would join their fleet to try and bait someone.

I have a nasty, suspicious mind and so decided it was a trap. I wanted to split them up and kill them so I yellow-boxed them back and followed the Stabber when he jumped through the gate, all alone. He aggressed while burning away from the gate so I immediately jumped back and tackled the Caracal. He also aggressed (success!) so I got in close and killed him good:


Those rapid lights actually hurt pretty badly but the overheated repper managed to (mostly) keep up. By the time he was dead the Stabber had returned, intent on seeing the colour of my blood. He aggressed just as the Caracal was about the explode. I went into a tight orbit and killed him too:


For good measure I decided to kill the Atron as well. I think he was tackling me so I had no choice. It was self defence!


A Heretic had landed a little while before but he jumped through the gate while I was killing the Atron. I called it a day.

Friday, June 19, 2015

A clichéd kill: the AFK Ishtar

More hunting in the Stratios! I decided that being careful in my choice of engagements was unsustainable nonsense, doomed to failure. So when I warped into a busy ratting system with an Ishtar at the nearest anomaly the only thing to do was warp in and hope for the worst (for the Ishtar pilot).

I had replaced the afterburner with a MWD, wanting to be able to close on targets more rapidly and willing to sacrifice some range control after tackle. This was fortunate, for the Ishtar was orbiting the site at about 1 km/s. Clearly a 100mn afterburner fit. AFK, perchance?

I predicted the orbit direction and began heading for a distant intercept, still under cloak. Unfortunately, I derped into some rocks or strewn wreckage and decloaked. But I hit the overheated MWD and was soon within range.

I was instantly tackled and feared the worst. The Ishtar, however, didn't attack. The NPCs did, though, and were soon nibbling at my armour. It began to dawn upon me that the tackle might actually be one of the rats, although I was too busy trying to kill the Ishtar to check.

He died quickly and my suspicions about the 100mn fit were confirmed. He had a rubbish tank once tackled, despite the blue shield repper. And I got his somewhat shiny pod, too. Hehe. Most satisfactory.



Saturday, June 13, 2015

I should stop flying the Stratios

I have been losing Stratios cruisers hand over fist. I am bad.

I decided that a break from lowsec was required and reactivated my Thera base. It is much quieter there now. Innocent Scout was doing her job and found a Sabre, Caracal and Hawk on a gate. I KNEW that I would probably die, especially because there was a Vexor Navy on scan somewhere close. But I jumped in anyway because by then I was bored. On reflection, my killboard would probably look much better if I was poor and had to worry about losing ships. But I don’t, so I did:


I didn't even manage to kill any of them before I died. The heavy drones were really struggling to apply damage to the targets and I didn't last long enough to wear them down. Sigh.

Not one to be deterred, I went and hopped into another Stratios, eyeing an exit to a nice quiet corner of Delve with a lot of recent NPC kills. On the way, I briefly detoured to kill a ratting, faction-fit Gila which I serendipitously isolated at a Relic site near the wormhole:


Very strange. He obviously had a death wish. I told him that Thera was a dangerous system to run sites in. He argued with me! I simply can't understand these people who do stupid things and lose faction cruisers in such silly ways. Ahem.

Rather than continue the argument with my victim I followed my original plan and headed off to Delve. I nearly caught another ratting Gila a couple of jumps in but he warped off just as I landed. I continued toward the inevitable dead end system, guided by Innocent who informed me of a nest of cruisers sitting on the station undock, clearly already warned of my presence.

Bugger it. In I jumped. The Vexor Navy had kindly come to meet me at the gate so I locked him up and went for it. Sigh. I couldn't break him either before everyone landed and killed me very dead:

Stratios loss:

I was starting to take the hint that the nice, shiny (and somewhat expensive) Stratios wasn't the right tool for the job. It certainly excels at ganking unaware Gilas but it just doesn't have the tank for a semi-prepared cruiser gang. And while I have no objection to killing silly people if I can catch them, I usually want to take a fight. What I need is a battleship!

I was deeply pondering the merits of a Thera-based solo Dominix approach when I came across a Stratios and Machariel running a site in Stain. I warped in and had a look at the situation. They were both quite far away from the NPCs and at opposite sides of the site. Fortuitously (or otherwise, as the case may be) the Stratios soon started burning back toward the NPCs on a path which went right past me.

I decloaked a few seconds out and tackled him. His reps were pretty good but what really decided matters was that the Machariel pilot was very much on the alert and rapidly transferred all his DPS. I died when the Stratios was at half hull. So close. I should have known better - those Russians tend to be on the ball.


Oh well, these things happen. I gave them a gf and returned to Amarr via Thera to collect another Stratios. I promised myself that I would be more careful with the next one and not lose it in such a silly way.

The next Thera exit led me straight into a busy Space Monkey's Alliance system. This didn’t bode well for my newly-formed resolution: there were Tengus, VNIs, battleships and my old friend the Gila. There was even a gate camp with all sorts of interceptors, possibly there to protect the tatters. It was obviously the height of foolishness to think that a visitor could sneak a kill and then escape. So obvious that the VNI and Gila chose not to leave their anomaly.

I know I had promised not to be silly with this Stratios but how could I let such an opportunity pass? I warped into the anomaly and saw that the VNI was piloted by a very old player with a non-existent killboard. The Gila was piloted by a nooblet. Still, a noob in a Gila with a companion VNI and a system full of support is surely a fair fight!

I angled between the wrecks, slowly making my way across the site. Finally I was in range. Just as I was about to decloak I noticed that Innocent Scout had been decloaked! Why hadn't I warped her safely away earlier? I cursed my poor coordination and hastily warped to the first thing I clicked on. Naturally, this was the bubbled gate with a swarm of interceptors all over it. Innocent died just as Zappity's scram landed on the Gila.

Revenge! I started killing the Gila and was surprised to see that he tackled me back almost immediately. Hmm, not a good sign. I watched the VNI, fully expecting him to add his significant damage to what was obviously a trap. However, although the VNI yellow-boxed me, he did not aggress until I had almost finished killing the Gila. I recalled my Geckos when the Gila popped and was aligning out when the VNI finally aggressed - with his NOS modules. I ignored this strange behaviour and warped away to a safe.

I kept an eye on the site by dscan, expecting to see a horde of angry interceptors appear at any moment. Nothing! Now, I don't pretend to understand sov null dynamics but if a gate camp is already set up in system why on earth should I be able to get away with something like this? I don't understand why they didn't warp in to help. I don't understand why the VNI didn't assist. I don't even understand why the Gila was carrying a scram. All very strange.



Friday, June 5, 2015

Oh, the injustice!

I have been the victim of an attempted suicide gank! Vicious and entirely unprovoked! Well, somewhat unprovoked. Actually, now that I think about it, entirely provoked. I have been the victim of an entirely justified suicide gank attempt!

I warped into a site which my combat probes promised would contain a Myrmidon. Sure enough, he was 75 km from the warp in, happily murdering the native rats. My steely glance fell upon his MTU, the natural prey of my Enyo assault frigate which the Myrmidon had carelessly deposited near the beacon. Zappity’s entry in local was soon adorned with a fetching yellow flashy skull.

The Myrmidon, perhaps lulled into a false sense of security by the distance between us, immediately opened fire. I quickly changed my trajectory to start with long spiral in but before I could get close he decided that valour was the better part and warped off. To the sun! I gave chase.

Unfortunately, my cunning adversary warped at range and I landed 100 km away. I quickly returned to the site and warped in at 100, only to find that he had disappeared despite still being on scan somewhere within 1 AU. I figured that he might try to pick up his MTU so I again returned to his site.

When I landed, he was not on grid but was still on the 1 AU scan. Was he already in the site? Or was he about to land? Decisions! And quickly! I entered the site.

Empty! But perhaps he won't think to check his d-scan. Patience... Sure enough, he arrived thirty seconds later, sliding majestically into the site and coming to a halt right on top of me.

Scram, web, orbit, kill drones. Ha! It was only a matter of time now. I was able to manage his damage easily and, although he was adept at pulling his drones when they were taking damage, I was steadily killing them off.

Still, after the missed opportunity with the small gang a couple of days earlier I had decided to bring along a logi alt in the form of Zappity’s cousin from marketing who is apparently on an extended secondment. I warped him in for practice in a cheap Navitas because I am a noob at logi and when he landed I set him to orbit at 20 km. But he was so clearly not required that I couldn't bring myself to press the button.

I was shocked, therefore, to hear him suddenly take damage from the Myrmidon! I double-checked and saw that the Myrmidon was now flashy red. And there were some new ships on grid, all serious looking with big guns. Ah, CONCORD.

I missed his pod but was still happy to take his convo when it arrived. I explained criminal vs suspect flags, I explained CONCORD, and I explained safeties. He was not impressed with me and vowed to take his revenge (yes, another one).




To be honest, I was disappointed with the outcome because it would have been much more satisfying to do the job myself. But the hunt was great fun!

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Another mortal enemy

First of all I have to say hello to everybody I have been ignoring in local as I travel about. I keep finding local filled with people who are trying to say hello to me and I am rudely ignoring because I am typing in corp chat or somewhere else. So hello everybody. I am not trying to be rude. It just comes naturally :)

I found myself orbiting a Hurricane Fleet Issue who had me yellow boxed but was apparently very determined not to aggress. To pass the time I started racing him to wrecks by checking his alignment and quickly burning in front of him, emptying the loot just before he got into range.

A few more rats appeared. He began moving towards them so I set a tight orbit, biding my time until Innocent had another prospective target lined up. A Dominix Navy looked enticing on the probe scanner and I was just about to warp out when the warning alert sounded. He had aggressed!

The timing was very suspicious. I suspected that he had made an error by clicking the wrong target. Still, I'm not one to look a gift horse in the mouth so I began chipping away at his defences. I paused briefly to kill a drone or two as well as a NPC Griffin just in case it jammed me (grr, I hate those things). Before long the galaxy was minus one Hurricane Fleet Issue plus pod:

Hurricane Fleet Issue:


He was a noob so I sent him some isk to cover his loss along with a link to The Lecture. He confirmed that he had mistakenly opened fire, having earlier set his safety yellow. Hehe, that’ll learn him.