Daily Archives: December 18, 2007

MMO Blogger Interviews at World IV

The team over at World IV, Tachevert and Tuebit, have started up a series of interviews with MMO bloggers of note.

So far they have interviewed the widely read Tobold, the industry insider Cuppycake, and, in the classic comedic tradition of the triple, the often mocked… um… me.

As I understand it, this will be an ongoing series, so check back there once in a while.

My wife, having read the interview, appreciated being called loving and understanding (and confirmed that the “at least I am at home” line was totally not working any more), but felt I could have said more.

So I just want to mention that she is completely hot, a better cook than my mother, and could have totally done better than me, but I enchanted her with my blue eyes and the written word. (I can write a heck of a mash note when I put my mind to it.)

And younger than me!  She is not as old as I am!

Oh, and she reads this blog every day.

And Then I Lost a Battlecruiser

Level III missions can be a dangerous things.

As is my usual luck, the first level III mission I ran was a big one called “Massive Attack.”

Unlike my first level I (“Worlds Collide,” run in an Ibis) and level II missions (“Recon, Part I“), I actually survived to fight another day.

I learned a few things running this mission, including the value of bookmarking a location within the mission so that you can jump out, then jump back in at a range where you can lay in with the heavy missiles without taking too much damage in return.

Still, in EVE, learning is an ongoing process. As I ran through one level III mission after another, I became quite confident that I was up to the task. My Drake seemed to be well equipped for missions. The passive tank on it tune based on suggestions made here and other places. I also put very expensive rigs (they all seem to need alloyed tritanium bars) in place to enhance my shields, and even bought a shield recharge improving implant with my expanding loyalty point balance.

So it was time for me to learn something new.

A good portion of the level III missions I get take place in low security systems. The agent is in high security, but the target is not.

Still, no big deal, right? I enter the system then jump right away to the mission and I only have some NPCs to worry about.

I had not considered the idea that other players would be out there in low security actually hunting mission runners. That whole corporations would be dedicated to scanning systems known to be popular for missions for players and hunting them down when they found them.

I seem to forget from time to time that EVE is, first and foremost, a PvP game.

And so it came to pass, I received a mission that sent me to Nalvula. It was one I had run before and I was prepared for it with both the correct ammunition and correct shield resistances.

I entered the system, jumped to the start of the mission, and began taking apart NPC ships.

I did not give much notice to when another player ship dropped into range, just for a moment, then jumped away. That sort of thing happens all the time when you are mining.

It wasn’t until a battleship and a battle cruiser dropped into the middle of my running battle with the NPCs that I figured out that something was amiss. Or as somebody foreshadowed in local just a while before:

trap.png

They locked on, warp scrambled, and chopped up one of my battle cruisers.

One of my battle cruisers?

Yes, I had decided that I needed to start working on standings with my miner. I thought that the easiest way would be to bring him along with Wilhelm on missions.

His skills were pretty meager when it came to combat. I bought him a Ferox, put some very simple equipment on it, armed it with 75mm Gatling Rails and a pair of ‘Malkuth’ Standard Missile Launchers, all of which I had laying around in storage. I figured that with him in tow, he could take care of swatting those annoying tech II NPC frigates with their annoyingly high resistances. I hate having to throw magazine after magazine of heavy missiles at them, scoring 15-20 points of damage, trying to wear them down.

As a bonus, my miner can control five drones, so I figured that would help out as well.

And so it was, when the pair jumped in. Wilhelm’s Drake and my miner’s Ferox were fighting away.

I was actually not quite as oblivious as I said above. Somebody dropping into my mission made me suspicious. So when the wrecking crew showed up, I immediately clicked on a station in the overview and sent the Drake off into warp. Just in time too, as the logs show they were trying to warp scramble Wilhelm right away.

Switching windows, I tried to send my miner off to a station as well, but it was too late, he was scrambled.

I put up what fight I could. I doubt either of them even noticed, but I put my drones and all my guns and missile bays on the Drake. As expected, the result was:

Destroyed: Ferox
System: Nalvula
Security: 0.4

Involved parties:

Name: Goyda (laid the final blow)
Security: -8.2
Alliance: SMASH Alliance
Corp: Veni Vidi Vici.
Ship: Raven
Weapon: Caldari Navy Mjolnir Torpedo

Name: tchamp2
Security: -7.8
Alliance: SMASH Alliance
Corp: Veni Vidi Vici.
Ship: Drake
Weapon: Hornet II

Destroyed items:

‘Malkuth’ Standard Missile Launcher I
‘Malkuth’ Standard Missile Launcher I
75mm Gatling Rail I
75mm Gatling Rail I
Large Shield Extender I
Shield Power Relay I
Power Diagnostic System I
Power Diagnostic System I
Antimatter Charge S, Qty: 186
Flameburst Light Missile, Qty: 37
Antimatter Charge S, Qty: 183
Antimatter Charge S, Qty: 185

That was the most expensive equipment, such that I had, destroyed with the ship. The missiles they expended probably cost them more than they could get for the pieces that remained.

Then, as my miner sat there in his pod, I learned that you can, in fact, warp scramble pods. I had not considered the idea up until that point and I had assumed, somewhere in the back of my mind, that pods ought to be at least somewhat immune to warp scrambled. Another illusion crushed.

Then came the offer to chat from one of them. I knew this was going to be the extortion round and they were not going to buy into how little ISK I keep on my miner, so I declined and they zapped me.

Destroyed: Capsule
System: Nalvula
Security: 0.4

Involved parties:

Name: tchamp2 (laid the final blow)
Security: -8.1
Alliance: SMASH Alliance
Corp: Veni Vidi Vici.
Ship: Drake
Weapon: Caldari Navy Scourge Heavy Missile

The pod, that was the expensive part. I had implants in my miner, and replacing them was going to cost me. Fortunately, Wilhelm had a stockpile of loyalty points. Still, even from the LP store, a +3 implant runs 12 million ISK.

Of course, it was only later that I read this in local:

nalvulawarning.png

Self destruct? I did not even know that was an option.

Well, at least I got off… well, not cheaply. But it could have been much worse. Had I lost the Drake and all of Wilhelm’s implants, or worse, both ships and both pods, I might have just called it a day for EVE, cancelled my account, and gone off to other games.  Not that I couldn’t afford to replace the items lost, but it is such a pain to go out an re-equip a ship with so many fitting

This demonstrates again that there really is not much of a PvE game in EVE. If anybody says you can just run missions, feel free to point out that any mission that strays into low security space, something that starts with level II missions, is essentially PvP enabled.

That is EVE Online.