We had been warned to be on hand for possible fleets yesterday. The armor timers for three Imperium Keepstars under PAPI cyno jammers were set to come out and we were going to try to make them pay for the effort this time around.
I was busy during much of the day, but I could see the pings coming up announcing fleets. It looked like the enemy was going to try for the Keepstar in M2-XFE. The other two Keepstars were ignored and repaired while both sides focused on the remaining one.
When I finally had a chance to log in I flew out in an ECM burst Malediction just to take a look. Both sides were grouped up, two masses of titans and supers facing each other, the Imperium fleet on the Keepstar and the PAPI fleet below it, shooting the structure. The timer had been paused at just about the 10 minute mark.
As I was scooting around, tethering up, and looking for some way to be annoying, the Imperium titans, which had been tethered, opened up with a doomsday barrage on the PAPI fleet.
That was the point that the battle became real. There were over 5,000 names in local, a number that grew past the 5,500 mark as the battle carried on.
At that point I flew my Malediction into the midst of the hostiles and set off the ECM burst. I wasn’t sure if I was going to be able to commit to the fight. But then my wife and daughter went out together and I decided to join one of the subcap fleets. I parked my interceptor in one of our structures, destroyed my pod to revive back in 1DQ1-A, where I grabbed a Rokh to join Mister Vee’s fleet.
While M2-XFE had cyno jammers setup by the hostiles, they were bringing them down now and then to jump in reinforcements, which allowed us to jump in our own reinforcements. Since the system was running at 10% tidi, the five minute up/down cycle of the cyno jammer lasted almost an hour for those of us jumping in from normal speed space.
I got in and joined the fun, shooting fighters and subcaps of opportunity. Tidi worked in my favor as my ECM burst hit a titan that was blown up after I returned in the Rokh, so the game counted me on the kill mail. It shows my ship as a Rokh, but my weapon as an ECM burst. I fulfilled my goal of getting on at least one titan kill. (I also got on the 10 billion ISK MTU kill mail.)
But then there was a call for boosters for the titan and super fleets. Asher pinged out to Reavers to get some boosters, so I went to answer the call, which took me out of the fight for almost two hours. I went to dock up and leave my ship so as to self-destruct again to get back to 1DQ again. However, by that point the server was under a lot more pressure, and docking took a long time and left me with a black screen that took a long time to clear. The client went unresponsive and I have to exit and try to log back in. That took ages, but eventually I was back in and in my pod. Then it was time to self destruct. That took a while as well.
Eventually though I ended up back in 1DQ where I had a Damnation command ship ready to go. The cyno jammers were down again, so I was able to take the slow bridge back to M2-XFE, where I got in one of the capital fleets and started boosting.
With that setup, I felt ambitious and got out my main alt and flew him over in another interceptor. As he flew over I contracted the Rokh to him, and he was able to dock up, collect the Rokh, board it, join Mister Vee’s fleet. That took about an hour to accomplish, but I managed it, after which I set him up on my little second monitor in UI-only mode and shot targets of opportunity as I heard them called. Along the way I tagged some hostile titans with him, and now he his on more titan kill mails than my main.
The command ship had a target painter, so I was able to get on a few kills with my main, but all the big toys were out of range of that.
The hostiles won the objective, reinforcing the armor timer and setting the structure up for the final timer. That will come out in about two days. But the fight kept on going.
The exchange of kills was fairly even, favoring PAPI by a few kills for much of the fight, but as the evening drew on past midnight Pacific time and towards downtime, which hits at 3am where I live, the exchange of titans began to favor the Imperium, though ships from both sides kept blowing up until the server shut down.
The tally for this fight will be huge. I am writing this as the battle is winding down, so the final numbers have not settled, but for titan kills I last saw 10 Leviathan, 18 Avatar, 87 Ragnorak, and 126 Erebus titans destroyed. That is almost 250 titans down and there will no doubt be more on the list once things settle down.
But this battle far exceeded B-R5RB back in 2014, the previous high water mark for the Tranquility server, when 75 titans were destroyed. This fight went well beyond that, though the destruction was much less lopsided than the earlier battle.
Expect follow up posts about this fight. Not only were many titans destroyed, but the total cost of the fight will easily exceed 20 trillion ISK according to early battle reports. (Edit: Now that things have settled down, adding the report header.)
To put that in perspective, the total destruction in Delve in October, which saw five huge fights in NPC Delve, only amounted to about 11 trillion ISK according to the October MER. (11 trillion ISK was also the amount of destruction wrought at B-R5RB, so this fight eclipsed that in ISK as well as losses.)
And there will be some clean up to do after downtime, as many people just went to bed after that and they will need to have their capitals, supers, and titans extracted.
Another historic day in New Eden. We shall see what the post battle repercussions lead to. This should certainly inflate the December MER.
Addendum: Now that I have had a bit of sleep and zKillboard has caught up, the titan loss totals look like this:
Imperium Titan Losses:
- Erebus – 66
- Ragnarok – 42
- Leviathan – 10
- Avatar – 5
- Vanquisher – 1
PAPI Titan Losses:
- Erebus – 63
- Ragnarok – 50
- Avatar – 14
- Leviathan – 1
Total Imperium: 124
Total PAPI: 129
Total Titans Destroyed: 252
[Edit: This is getting updated as kill mails show up. ]
You can tell which titans are considered the least tanky. Both sides shot the Erebus and Ragnaroks first. The first titan to die belonged to the appropriately named Titanic Death, while the last was Sandrin Stone, who blew up just before downtime kicked everybody out.
To expand on titan numbers, the count of them on the battlefield was:
- Avatar – 317
- Erebus – 137
- Ragnarok – 135
- Leviathan – 82
- Vanquisher – 2
- Molok – 2
- Avatar – 248
- Ragnarok – 193
- Erebus – 111
- Leviathan – 90
- Molok – 2
- Vanquisher – 1
- Komodo – 1
Combined Titan total: 1,321
That is a lot of very expensive ships thrown in on a Keepstar armor timer.
For the battle report, the difference in the ISK totals pretty much comes down to that Vanquisher faction titan loss on the Imperium side. Otherwise it was a pretty even exchange on the titan front. Now we will no doubt see both sides going on about how the other cannot afford to replace their losses.