A pattern is starting to emerge in the current null sec war. Keepstar fights are becoming a regular thing. We might end up calling this the Keepstar War.
The latest round unfolded on Wednesday night/Thursday morning in the system UALX-3 in the Tenerifis region, close to the boarder with Catch. TEST had dropped a Keepstar in the system the night before, a deliberate challenge to Pandemic Legion and its allies attacking from the southeast.
The attackers could not let the Keepstar online. Killing a Keepstar as it anchors is a one shot deal, if they could manage it. If they let it anchor and be fueled up, the attackers would have to go through the three rounds of shield, armor, and structure fights in order to dispatch it. So there was a good deal of incentive to take care of business immediately and a fight ensued.
It was a huge fight, with ~4,000 people participating and hundreds of ships being destroyed as Pandemic Legion and its allies piled into the system. The Imperium, now blue to TEST and the Legacy Coalition, showed up in force to help defend the Keepstar and things escalated into capitals and super capitals.
I was not at the fight, so that screen shot comes from Xsubdude’s Imgur gallery of pictures from the fight. Definitely worth a look.
According to a Reddit live blog of the fight, which will give you a timeline, the losses were a follows:
PANDEMIC LEGION &EASTERN ALLIES LOSSES:
- 9 titans
- 18 dreads
- 74 Force Auxiliaries
- 628 subcaps
- 729 ships total
- 1.09T isk lost
- 4 titans
- 339 dreads
- 613 subcaps
- 956 ships total
- 1.45T isk lost (figure includes Keepstar loss @ .3T isk)
- 1.15T isk lost in ships alone
The large number of dreadnoughts represent TEST dread bombing the attacking titans and their support repeatedly.
There are battle reports circulating, though so many parties were involved in the fight it is hard to tell if everybody is lined up correctly. It mostly matches the stats above, though since fighters get counted on battle reports, the total kills are higher. I had to fix two parties at that link and I am sure it still isn’t wrong somewhere. But I grabbed screen shots of the stats from DOTLAN the next morning and the 24 hour stat shows that UALX-3 and the Tenerifis region were high on the list of destruction.
The fight was set to carry on until down time, with both sides locked together and more forces poised to jump in, but the node crashed. However, but that point the Keepstar was already dead, so the attackers had won both the objective and the ISK war.
So what do you do after you lose a Keepstar, lose the ISK war, and the node dies so you can’t even keep killing enemy titans?
Well, step one is to anchor bubbles all over the last known location of the hostiles so if they start logging in again you can pick them off. The node crash left them all on the field so you might as well try to grab them.
And, of course, you need a lot of watchers to grab anybody who logs back in.
And, of course, you bubble up the gates and generally try to keep a lid on the system so you have a good chance of blowing up anybody foolish enough to log back in alone after the fight. The combined effort seems to have been effective in picking off people trying to log back in to escape, though that has been limited to subcaps. Nobody has sacrificed a titan that way yet.
Finally, I guess if you’re Progodlegend, you drop another Keepstar right where you lost the old one.
The Keepstar War continues! Even CCP seemed surprised.
And for good measure, you drop a Fortizar as well right next to where the bubble farm is.
The Keepstar is set to come out at 02:00 EVE Online time, which will be 7pm in the evening for me. We have other plans for the evening, so I am going to miss at least the open rounds of this next event. But I have a stealth bomber in a safe spot in the system should I get home in time to look in on the fun.
Pandemic Legion and their allies already have a capital and super capital force on grid, so it will be easy for them to join in I suppose. However, the defenders know right where they are, so can position themselves accordingly, and preparations are already under way for this next event, as well as for any break out attempt by the attackers. There is even a rumor of a cyno jammer going up in the system, because after Keepstars it is cyno jammers as a possible theme for this war.
In a few hours we will see what both sides have planned for their Friday nights.