A call went out over Jabber for a Drake fleet. Then another one a bit later. And then one in all caps, because Dabigredboat was apparently not getting enough people interested in his Drake Fleet op.
At that point I was sitting in front of the computer and decided that if we were short, I ought to log in and help out.
So I launched EVE and was reminded it was patch day.
Patching happened. And then a follow up client patch went through. And then, finally, I was able to log in, maybe 15 minutes after I set out.
I got in the fleet, I got on Mumble for audio coms, and found I was way behind. I was sitting in VFK still while Boat and the fleet were way out at the far end of Branch and ready to enter Tenal. That was maybe 25 jumps by gates, and still nearly a dozen with jump bridges. And each transition takes time.
It was time to burn. Throwing caution to the wind, I just drove my Drake out there as fast as I could. I actually ran into two neutrals sitting at one of the gates, but they didn’t bother me and I did not bother them. Meanwhile Boat was badgering people on coms to catch up and asking how far out we were. I x’d up as being 8 jumps out, which put me far behind the next person ahead of me.
And yet I got there in time for the fight. Which is sometimes how these things work out.
I made it to the system. The operation was to protect a tower that one of the CFC alliances had placed 3DR-CR, a system in Tenal which puts it right in Raiden’s front yard. In fact, looking at today’s map of Tenal, the Razor Alliance, part of the CFC, has been encroaching in Tenal and taking systems.
Unfortunately, when the tower came out of reinforcement mode, Raiden and their allies were able to take it out, a loss Boat took rather personally.
We were able to knock out a a few ships, including a pair of carriers, which helped tip the ISK balance our way, though we lost more ships, the control tower, and all of the supporting structures. More work to be done replacing that.
After that, Boat was pretty determined to hunt down the fleet that did it. There was a fleet of Abaddons, an Amarr battleship that is popular in some null sec alliances the way the Maelstrom is with the CFC, that was rattling around in the system with us. That was our goal.
After some jumping back and forth between systems in an attempt to head them off, we had a bit of luck.
The picture above is one of those in the category of “priceless.”
That is the Drake fleet warping in right on top of the Abaddons. If you look at the full picture, and know your ships, you can see an Onyx heavy interdictor in the picture. We were able to put up bubbles and catch a good chunk of the Abaddon fleet. The kill mail tells the tale.
A bunch got away, but we were able to knock down 17 Abaddons along with some of their support ships, putting both the number of kills and the ISK total well in our favor.
After that, we continued to chase down the rest of the Abaddon fleet, but they holed up in a station a few systems over and would not come out to play.
We sat on the station for a while to see if they would come out or if another fleet would come to rescue them, as happened last Friday. But it was not to be. Eventually we pulled back into Branch again to consolidate with reinforcements and to coordinate further operations. More towers were coming out of reinforcement, so ops were planned for well into the evening.
By that point though I had already been in game for over two hours, which is kind of a long time for me on a week night, so I dropped fleet and headed to the nearest friendly station to log off.
Still, it was a good night with some interesting action along with the usual amount of inaction. We got to hear great detail about Boat’s dinner, which included ribs last night. The ribs were so tender that Boat reported that when he picked one up, the meat literally fell right off the bone. These are the important details on coms when nothing else is going on. Then he had us all watch a video on YouTube of some Russians maiming themselves by rolling down a hill inside of a big wooden cable spool. The spool gets the last word.
And we heard a pilot, whose name I have since forgotten, on coms from Nevis (EVE has pilots from everywhere) who has such a clear and perfectly toned Eastern Caribbean accent that he clearly missed his calling doing the voice work for those “Come back to Jamaica” commercials. You might be too young to remember those.
Also, I want to shout out to Aleph Gideon, a pilot in the fleet channel who saw one of my few messages and said he liked the blog. Thanks man!
So, as I always say, the war goes on. The one other big topic in coms was the upcoming nerf to Titans, the details of which were posted in the forums and were reprinted over at Jester’s Trek. It will be interesting to see how this change affects the war when in is introduced at some point in April.
Addendum: EVE 24 News has a Raiden view of the war up. They aren’t losing ground so much as shortening internal lines of supply… or something.