On Saturday I was down in Delve again in a fleet for a project that will be the topic of another post later this week. But while people were down there, PanFam came by and reinforced the Ansiblex jump bridge and Pharolux cyno beacon in F7C-H0, the staging system for the Goon Expeditionary Force deployment.
We came back on Sunday for the final timers, with some early pings to ask people to be on hand and ready should PanFam decide to come back and contest the final timers for the two structures. I logged myself in and got in my Guardian, assuming that Sacrileges would be the main doctrine yet again, and I was not disappointed.
The ping came that PanFam was coming and I quickly jumped into the Sac fleet being run by Apple Pear. That fleet filled up and a Jackdaw fleet was called as well. In addition, the Initiative had some Abaddons ready to go and capitals were logging on in case the fight escalated. When the word came to undock the hostiles were already in system and time dilation was kicking in. I got to watch ships streaming out of the Keepstar for almost a minute before the client got around to drawing the structure.
There were PanFam Hurricanes and Feroxes already on grid around the two contested structures, with the beacon under attack. We warped out and interdictors starting dropping warp disruption bubbles to hold the hostiles down.
The Hurricanes were close by when we landed and the Sac fleet began hitting them when we landed. Anchored up, I put my drones out to take care of any small targets that wandered into range, but initially we had little to do as logi save keep up. The Hurricanes were focused on killing the beacon, and we were likewise focused on the Hurricanes.
They were lingering outside of drone range for me (60km) so I mostly had my drones chasing around their Sabres and the occasional command destroyer that might MJD us away from the fleet. With the beacon down the fight moved towards the jump gate.
We remained focused on the Hurricanes. The Ferox fleet was further off and TEST alliance was around with a small fleet of Zealots and another of bombers to try and third party on the whole thing, but Hurricanes remained the closest targets.
Meanwhile, at the peak of the fight, time slowed down, as it always does, with time dilation down to 10%, which meant everything was taking ten times as long to accomplish.
The TEST bombers began making runs on our fleet. Running in slow motion meant our ability to react was good, I was able to turn off my MWD with each run, but it also meant they had lots of time to consider their warps and launches. Things began to get busy for logi and people broadcast for bomb damage. We had to get somebody in command to set the marker for when people should broadcast (below 50% armor) to get a handle on the stream of requests.
Meanwhile, we had undocked super carriers and a few titans who warped onto grid to take shots at the various hostile fleets. There was also a fleet of dreadnoughts waiting to drop if PanFam escalated to capitals. However, the dreads were disappointed as no targets came for them.
Then the jump gate exploded. The Hurricanes had done their work.
But that did not mean the fight was over. There was still a fight going on around the wreck of the gate.
Interdictors kept bubbles up on the hostiles as they tried to pull away and more Hurricanes were hit as they attempted to run.
The TEST bombers kept making runs, keeping those of us in logi busy. Looking at the kill mails for some of them, they were being less than picky about targets, hitting PanFam and us (and themselves occasionally), but we were a big, obvious ball of ships so were targeted regularly.
The fight eventually moved to the gate out of the system where we congregated to try and grab those trying to get away.
There the fight petered out as those who were able got away.
PanFam won the objective, the beacon and the jump gate were both destroyed.
However, the cost of doing that was pretty high according to the battle report.
We clearly won the ISK was by a fair margin… by a margin big enough to replace the two structures certainly. A new jump bridge was in place not too long later.
As we were coming down from the fight, covering capitals as they got back to where they needed to be, a pair of ISD Polaris frigates showed up to see what was going on.
They were no doubt scoping out what we had been up to.
ISD does a few things, including work on the stories from New Eden that go on The Scope or the Interstellar Correspondents page, so maybe the fight will get a mention. I am given to understand that ISD members with the “BH” prefix are “bug hunters,” so maybe something happened during the fight that send them out to take a look.
Either way, the fight seemed to get positive reviews from both sides over on /r/eve.