Caracal for a Day

With mining going well, I thought I would splurge and buy that cruiser I was thinking about a few posts back.

I decided to go with the Caracal.  From what I have read, with the right load out, it will eat level II missions for lunch.

Of course, I do not have a lot of skill points in missiles.  I have tended to concentrate more on gunnery up to this point.  So this was probably my first mistake.  But I paid that no mind.

While my miner was off filling up a jet can, I scanned the market in search of equipment for my new cruiser.  I had cruised the ship setup thread on the forums and chose this setup from one of the Caracal threads, designed for mission running:

High Slots:

  • 3 ‘Malkuth’ Assault Launchers (armed with Bloodclaws)
  • 2 ‘Malkuth’ Heavy Launchers (armed with Scourges)

Mid Slots:

  • 1 10MN After Burner
  • 1 Large Subordinate Shield Extender
  • 1 Large Shield Booster
  • 1 Shield Boost Amplifier
  • 1 Passive Kinetic Screen

Low Slots:

  • 2 Power Diagnostic Units

I grabbed the Assault Launchers and one Heavy Launcher pretty quickly along with the after burner.

I was having a bit of a problem with some of the other items.  One of the problems with the forums is that people list out things by how they refer to them which is not necessarily their actual in-game name.  For example, I never found something called a “Passive Kinetic Screen”  In fact, aside from the after burner, when it came to the mid and low slots I was sort of picking things that sounded similar as there were no exact matches.

Still, I poked about.

As I was doing that, a player named Takanakano started circling around my miner.  He swooped in and grabbed some ore from my jet can.  There was not much there, as I had just done a hauler run to empty it, but that flagged him as an open target.  I locked onto him with my Osprey to see what he would do, but was not going to fire.  The Osprey has one standard missile launcher on it to clear rats.  It is otherwise configured to mine.

I had seen on local that Takanakano’s game was to harry miners by stealing from their cans.  There wasn’t much I could do about it with just the Osprey.

But I was just in the system with my Cacaral, so I formed a gang with my miner and warped over to him.  I then locked on to Takanakano with the Cacaral as well, in the hopes that this might send him in search of other prey.

He continued to orbit, then swept in again to take another bite from the jet can.

“Well,” I thought, “here I am with this new cruiser, five missile launchers ready to go plus a 6th on the Osprey.  Maybe I should go for it.  If things go bad, I’ll just warp for a base until things cool down.”

This is where planning, or lack there of, comes into play.

You see, I loaded the first assault launcher I bought, but neglected to load the other two.  Further compounding this, I left the ammo for the heavy launcher sitting in the station.

I noticed this after lighting off the first launcher.

I quickly hit reload all then noticed that the heavies were not loading.  Time to head for home!

Those of you experienced EVE players in the audience can probably anticipate what is going to happen next.

Yes, he scrambled my warp drive.  And me without a warp core stabilizer.  Why would I need one?  Rats never scramble me.

I lit off the Osprey’s launcher, just to add to the fireworks show then tried to figure out what to do.

Shield booster on!  Engines to full power!  Light the after burner!  If I could just survive for a bit, perhaps I could warp out.

Another item on my litany of mistakes comes up at this point.  Had I been thinking, I might have run straight towards him in the hopes that the fire from his cannon might become less accurate.  Instead I headed away, so I probably just put myself in the optimum range of his guns.

Things were looking bad.  I sent the Osprey off to a station.

I got a station up in the overview so that when the ship came apart I could at least get away without being pod-killed.

And the ship did come apart of course.  By that point I think I had his shields down by about 25% at most.  Maybe less.  That could be wishful thinking.  Those little missiles were not biting very hard and the big ones, the ones you kill cruisers with, were still asleep back in the station.

The mail from CONCORD tells the tale:

2007.08.25 00:47

Victim: Wilhelm Arcturus
Alliance: NONE
Corp: Twilight Cadre
Destroyed: Caracal
System: Hageken
Security: 0.6

Involved parties:

Name: Takanakano (laid the final blow)
Security: 1.8
Alliance: NONE
Corp: Darkness Inc.
Ship: Stabber
Weapon: 220mm Vulcan AutoCannon I

Destroyed items:

10MN Afterburner I
Power Diagnostic System I
Power Diagnostic System I
Bloodclaw Light Missile, Qty: 489 (Cargo)
Bloodclaw Light Missile, Qty: 63

My pod got away, so I was spared that indignity and expense.

At least I had decided to go with the platinum insurance policy. 

I had that Caracal for less than two hours I think.  But as my mother-in-law says, “Stupidity must be punished.”

My second ship lost to another player.  I’ll save the story of the other one for another time.

I think I will go with the Moa next time I buy a cruiser.  I have a lot of skill points in gunnery.  I’d better go read that thread on the forums.

And a warp core stabilizer.  I’m putting that on the list as well.

10 thoughts on “Caracal for a Day

  1. eric

    Great story. I got jittery-fingers just reading it.

    If you keep posting these great Eve stories, I may not have to resub afterall. I’ll just pilot vicariously through you.

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  2. syncaine

    Indeed, good story. At least the other ship got away, and you did not get podded.

    On my list of things to do shortly is to get a Caracal, as my pilot has more missile skills than gunnery. It will be used mostly for lvl 2 missions, and lvl 4 missions when my Corp does them on Sundays.

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  3. Kirith Kodachi

    OK, let me help you out!

    First off, that Caracal Setup is good. The Large Subordinate Shield Extender is a “named” type of Large Shield Extender I that is better than the basic. And the Passive Kinietic Screen is a Resistance Amplifier and for Kinetic damage you want Basic Kinetic Deflection Amplifier:
    http://www.eve-online.com/itemdatabase/EN/shipequipment/shield/shieldresistanceamplifiers/1802.asp

    In the lows, the Power Diagnositic UNits are ok, but if you can spare one swap it out for a Ballistic Control UNit which will make your missiles hit harder.

    In Level 2 missions, I used a caracal with 5 assault launchers, the Heavies were overkill and not as effective against frigates.

    Finally, I never ran missions with a Moa but if you do go that route, be aware that rails/blasters use capacitor making a shield tank harder to run, that’s why missiles are favoured in missions. Plus you can choose the damamge type that works best against the rats in the mission whereas hybrid charges only do thermal and kinetic damage.

    Finally, don’t fit a warp core stabilizer on a combat ship! It makes your scan resolution worse so you can target as far and it takes longer to get a lock. You just have to pick your battles more carefully, that jet car ore theif was hoping you would shoot at him (i.e. agress him) so he could kill you. Best to ignore those types unless you have friends or an obviously more powerful ship than he does.

    Cheers!

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  4. Melmoth

    I had cruised the ship setup thread on the forums

    So you bought a Caldari Forum cruiser as well? I hear those things are hideously expensive, but they do have excellent inherent shielding against flame attacks.

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  5. Wilhelm2451 Post author

    Two accounts and two computers in my case. I am still working on how to get two clients to play nicely on my main computer at home.

    Some details in the post called “The Two Client Blue-screen Blues.”

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  6. Debes

    What times are you on, usually? I need to do a ratting run tonight, but I’ve had awful luck with pvp lately, so I can come over and give you a hand..

    Like

  7. Gooney

    Lost my first ship last night. Ok it was only a Merlin but hey, a loss is a loss. Wasnt even a player that popped me, was pirates. I was doing an Agent Mission in deadspace which said that I could fly by rooms 1 and 2 and skip to 3. So ya, I show up and theres no bloody rooms, just launch gates to other pirate infested places. Im still not sure what the hell I should have been doing there, oh I know the mission, save yokel passengers. I didnt see any container filled with passengers and I killed a whole bunch of the pirates before I got gang-banged.

    So, lost ship with shiney new launchers and equipment, lost the 5 skills I had in the cargo, lost the rep of a failed mission, basically… Im a loser.

    So I bought a Kestrel, I’ll try again tonight.

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  8. kibble

    Don’t fly towards people to avoid their fire. You’ve gotta get transversal speed up. The best way to do this is orbit him as close as possible while still maintaining top speed.

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