Category Archives: Null Sec

Flip That Keepstar and Changes in Impass

Word came down as we sat on the former Circle of Two Keepstar in 68FT-6 that it would be changing owners again.  A deal had been negotiated wherein TEST would be buying the citadel from us.  Soon Middle Management Dino was floating between the uprights of the Keepstar.

The TEST logo flying proudly

It had been reported previously that The Judge had received 300 billion ISK to transfer the Keepstar to GSF, and the rumor going about was that TEST bought it yesterday for 400 billion ISK.  Despite the markup that is still a pretty good price for a fully fitted, lightly used (never been besieged!) Keepstar.  Look the price at which zKillboard valued a recent Keepstar kill.

The name remains the same for now.

Keepstar still bubbled

Meanwhile, some diligent camper brought in some more small bubbles and rebuilt the “LOL” in space above the citadel.

Bubble arrangement

Somebody on coms said that the shaft of the dong also had to be recreated as it had also been built out of tech I warp disruption bubbles, which only last for 48 hours.  (Bubble decay came in with the YC119.3 update.  Before then they lasted until somebody shot them.)

Selling the Keepstar at least answers my question about what we were planning to do with it.  We weren’t going to keep it here in Impass, which will soon be hostile to us again, and packing it up to ship it back to Delve invites a gank attempt.  Now what to do with it is TEST’s problem.

And speaking of problems, the camp itself is becoming a bit of one.  As time goes on more and more of the CO2 groups are leaving that alliance and joining one of the others that we are temp blue with.  So in addition to the people moving into Impass, some of which are temp blue and some of which are not, we have corps in transition, having left CO2 but in the cool down before they can join TEST or Brave or whoever.  So there were many moments where there seemed to be a target… like when a Capital Fusion Naglfar undocked… only to find they were tethered because they were pledged to TEST but not yet in the alliance.

The dismantling of CO2 continues, with many pilots and most systems gone now.

Circle of Two Changes – Sep. 15, 2017

CO2 membership is still in motion, but the sovereignty has been divided up by members of the Legacy Coalition, which Impass being shared by Brave, Drone Walkers, and Requiem Eternal.

Impass Sov – Sep. 15, 2017

TEST also has a system in the region, though it is not 68FT-6, which makes me wonder what they are going to do with the Keepstar once things settle down.

Meanwhile, the camp of the Keepstar seems set to wind down.  Fewer and fewer attempts to escape are being made and we’re occasionally having to pay people who we shouldn’t shoot.  The number of CO2 pilots hanging out in the Keepstar is dwindling.  Then there is the fire sale market, which has been pretty much picked over.  The good deals are gone.  There are a few things I might buy if we lived here.  But having to haul stuff back to Delve or to Jita is a non-starter.

I suspect that we will pack up and head home before the weekend is out.  Then the temporary cease fire will run out and Impass will go back to being hostile territory and somebody else’s problem.

Meanwhile Triumvirate, CO2’s ally in the war, looks to be in an uncomfortable situation.  Still, they managed to blow up an FCON Fortizar and a Nyx while people were focused on Impass and 68FT-6.

The camp out in 68FT-6, tiny in the scope of the universe

And the story of null sec grinds slowly on.

Addendum: The camp is over.  TEST head Progodlegend has declared that CO2 corps are welcome in TEST, (save for those evil advisors in Balkan Mafia who steered GigX into all of this) so they can’t very well let us keep shooting them (or join in on that).  Progodlegend declared his disgust with The Jude in his statement, though just the other day he was saying on Reddit “You made the right call Judge.”

So said PGL initially

Anyway, CO2 members have a clear out now and we’re all headed home after a few days of camping.

At the Camp in 68FT-6

Being the space tourist that I am, I had to get out to 68FT-6 to see the pilfered Keepstar, the hell camp, and the various warp disruption bubbles laid about the station.

The bubbles above the Keepstar

Pings were calling for more interdictors and I had a Flycatcher stashed not too far away, so I tried to get out to the scene, but fell victim to a gate camp.  It was a gate camp I should have expected, could have avoided, and likely could have escaped, but I managed to be dumb on all front at that point and got blown up instead.  Typical me.

That put me back in Delve where I grabbed a Sabre I had handy and started the flight out to 68FT-6 all over again.  The route from Delve to Impass was actually pretty safe thanks to the fact that we are temporarily blue with both TEST and Brave Newbies, so in my speedy ship it wasn’t too long before I was arriving at my destination.

First glimpse of the Keepstar name

I docked up, then undocked to join one of the fleets camping the Keepstar, waiting for any daring CO2 pilot to try and get away.

Hanging out in the bubbles near the undock

I hung out in the fleet, listened to coms, and generally only paid half attention at most to what was going on.  There wasn’t much.  Capsules and interceptors that undocked to try and slip out were quickly picked off by sensor boosted insta-lockers in the fleet.  There was little chance to get in on those kills unless you had drones assigned to one of those pilots.

I did luck out and get on one kill when an Apostle undocked to get blown up for insurance.

Apostle getting hit

I almost missed out on that.  I saw the Apostle appear on my overview and it took me a moment to process the fact that somebody had undocked and wasn’t almost instantly dead.  By the time I locked the ship up the damage was well into armor.  But I was close enough to get in a few hits with my tiny whore gun and was included on the kill mail.  Somebody gunning the Keepstar did most of the damage.

After that it was more hanging out and listening to coms.  DBRB showed up for a bit and stirred people up.  After he left some new guy said he had heard about DBRB but now understood why people hated him.  I could only think, “You know nothing Jon Snow!”  That little visit was barely Boat at all.  I am very much on the pro-Boat side of things because nobody throws themselves into this game like he does and he has been leading fleets and getting kills for longer than any active FC I know.  But he is an acquired taste and a little Boat can go a long way.

Sitting around on the Keepstar

We also have the station in the system well covered.

Station bubbles? Check!

Being a tourist attraction, other fleets and individuals would show up from time to time just to look in on the event.  What looked to be a Spectre fleet showed up in Confessors and hung about for a bit, killing somebody being dumb in a Legion before heading off for greener pastures.

Confessors lurking well out of range

Not far off from the Keepstar, on the same grid, Legion of xXDEATHXx was dropping a Raitaru.

Raitaru online in seconds

I am not sure what Legion of xXDEATHXx has planned in the area, but TEST was about guarding the deployment, so they are clearly welcome in the area.

Legion of xXDEATHXx logo on the Raitaru

And then there were the CO2 members hanging out in the Keepstar looking for a way out.

I am not going to go Gevlon and claim there were no victims here, but the people in CO2 do have some options.  There is asset safety with citadels, so after some duration they can pay 15% of the assessed value of their stuff to have it delivered to a station in low sec.  That can add up quickly and  you’re still stuck in low sec and have to move your stuff around, but you can at least get your stuff… unless you have a super capital.  You can only dock a super in a citadel, not an NPC station, so some very expensive ships might be lost.

But even that can be worked around.  A number of alliances are taking in CO2 individuals and corporations.  TEST is very open and even the Imperium has picked up some members from CO2.  Back at the end of the Casino War I saw people leave the Imperium, join Pandemic Horde, rescue their stuff, then come back to the Imperium.  Some times you have to do what you have to do to get your stuff safe.

I wouldn’t want to trade places with them, but all is not lost.

While out on the camp the word came over coms that The Judge had joined Goonswarm.

The Judge

Like Haargoth Agamar before him (the guy who disbanded Band of Brothers) The Judge was take in by Goonswarm, but faces a future of relative obscurity.  As others have noted, and even Haargoth himself said before he pulled the trigger, after you do something like this it isn’t like you’re going to get a lot of positions of responsibility.  You’ve shown your colors and that is that.  He certainly won’t run for the CSM again.  He would be a distraction and would be more likely to get people to vote just to elect somebody else.  Some people have been asking if there is a way to recall him from the current CSM.

And then there is GigX.

He got himself perma banned for continuous, very public, often very specific threats to harm The Judge in real life either at his home or when he shows up in Iceland for the next CSM summit.  That goes well beyond “heat of the moment” to my mind.  He burned himself and good, though he might yet get himself reinstated with an appropriate apology and whatever amends might fit.  We shall see.

I’m somewhat pissed that he felt he had to loudly and publicly threaten The Judge and get himself banned.  It was both dumb and avoidable and it also hurt the game.

First, the end of the story was cut short.  And in null sec stories are what makes the place great.  You can blow people up anywhere, but you can only play space empires in null.  CO2 is done for now by default because GigX is gone.  We won’t know how things might have played out had he stayed in the game or what sort of recovery of might have occurred.  I wouldn’t bet against the determination of GigX, and despite some of the things he has done to his alliance, he has his share of supporters.

Second, and probably more importantly, his behavior changed the narrative in the news.  Rather than this being a story of intrigue and betrayal, it is becoming a tale about how a bad person in a bad game made real life threats and got banned.  Gamers remain horrible people as he managed to shit on all of us.  Thanks.

Welcome to the new cycle.

So I remain out on the camp, collecting participation links… I need some as I haven’t been on a fleet yet this month… and watch a lot of brand new TEST pilots undock and fly away.  I wonder what we’re going to do with the Keepstar once the temp blue situation is over?

Even Fat Bee is in a bubble

There is still work to be done, CO2 space to be carved up and conquered, new homes to be found, and a new balance of power to be sorted out.  But that will come and eventually things will settle down and events of the day will fade into memory just like the mocking bubbles spelling out LOL above the Keepstar.

Bubbles, like events, fade eventually

And yes, somebody made a giant penis out of warp disruption bubbles below the Keepstar.

Make no mistake, it is a dong

I think people… well, men… have been scrawling penises on things throughout history, so why not in this pretend dystopian future?

The Imperium Buys a Keepstar

During the recent CSM summit Aryth, one of the representatives from the Imperium, brokered a deal to buy a Keepstar citadel in the system of 68FT-6.  Let me bring that system up on the DOTLAN map.

Hey, isn’t that Impass?

Yes, that is in Impass, and the system 68FT-6 is the capital system for the Circle of Two alliance.

In one of those great moments that happen from time to time in null sec politics, CSM member The Judge, who appeared on the Imperium ballot despite being in CO2, finally got fed up with the way GigX, the leader of CO2 was running the alliance and sold him out.

The Imperium ended up with a Keepstar… ISK well spent… so I guess it was true, we could work with him.  (It isn’t the first Keepstar that GigX has lost.)

Things have not gone well for GigX and CO2 since they betrayed the Imperium a year and a half back at the battle of M-OEE8 during the Casino war.  His immediate gains in territory were stripped from him once his erstwhile allies had sent us packing to Delve and he too had to head south to form up with TEST.

After acquiring space in the south things began to slowly deteriorate, both within the alliance and with neighbors, until things finally broke down with TEST, their closest ally, in late August.  Then war opened, with only a few siding with CO2.

And now this.  The Imperium holds their Keepstar and has a hellcamp setup to try to catch and blow up anybody trying to escape.  There is a temp blue situation with TEST so we can work with them on this.

Live from 68FT-6

(screen shot courtesy of Naice Rucima)

Meanwhile, TEST now controls all of the CO2 Fortizars, The Judge emptied the alliance coffers, and the line members have to be in a panic or looking for an out.  TEST has said they would accept corps and individuals from CO2.

This is going to take some time to play out, but I felt I had to put a pin in the date to remember when it started.  This could be the end for CO2.  It certainly seems likely to be the end for GigX, who was alleged to have threatened The Judge with an out of game visit and has reportedly been perma-banned for this.

Sources talking about what happened:

And so it goes.  I was going to write something up about today’s patch, but aside from new skills coming in for the moon mining update set for the upcoming Life Blood expansion, there isn’t much to talk about.  But now we have this instead!

Delve – Deploying Means Less Ratting and Mining

The New Eden Monthly Economic Report for August 2017 is out, and while there are some surprises, the economic performance of Delve isn’t one of them.

The Imperium spent most of the middle of the month of August deployed in the north, staging out of the low sec system of Hakonen.  This meant less people ratting and mining, but probably more important, less people defending the home region of Delve.  That led to a sharp uptick in carrier and Rorqual losses.  So, as one might expect, NPC bounties were way down for Delve.

August 2017 – NPC Bounties by Region

Hitting close to 3.6 trillion ISK in bounty payouts, that put the region down almost 5 trillion ISK from July, when the payouts totaled 8.4 trillion ISK.  The August take was just 42% of the July number.

Still, that left Delve ahead of other heavily ratted regions such as Branch, Cobalt Edge, Outer Passage, and Period Basis, all of which remained fairly steady month over month.  The overall effect of the deployment can be seen in the ISK sinks and faucets chart.

August 2017 – Top 8 ISK Sinks and Faucets

The bounty payouts dip and recover on the chart as the Imperium deployed then returned home.  That dip represents a little over half of Delve’s contribution to that chart, so you can see that it is significant, but also that bounties are being paid out elsewhere too.  With Delve gone bounties would still the largest ISK faucet in the game by far.  And, of course, 92% of bounties are still paid out in null sec.

It is also interesting to note the bump in insurance payouts and transaction tax and broker’s fee deductions during the deployment north as the Imperium bought out supplies in Jita and then lost piles of Typhoons.  The interconnectivity of the economy is one of the powerful aspects of EVE Online.

On the mining front Delve was likewise down during the deployment.

August 2017 – Mining Value by Region

The dip in mining is even more dramatic that bounties, with the value assessed at 2 trillion ISK, down from over 10 trillion ISK in July.  That is an 80% cut, though it is not surprising.  Rorquals, the mining ship of choice in null sec space, were heavily targeted during the deployment.  Many were blown up… the value of ships destroyed went from 1.4 trillion to 2.2 trillion ISK… while smarter miners chose not to expose their fancy ships to the danger.

Likewise, production in Delve was down as well, dipping by 50% as people threw themselves into the deployment.

August 2017 – Production Values by Region

The key economic figures summary chart also shows Delve dropping by half when it comes to trade value as well when compared to the July numbers.

August 2017 – Regional Stats

So that is the economic impact of the Imperium taking its show on the road for a few weeks.

However, we’re back in Delve again now, the defenses are back in place, and ratting and mining are relatively safe occupations for the wary again.  I expect the numbers to bounce back to July levels this month, perhaps even exceeding them as people put in a bit of effort to make up for losses and lost time.

 

Coming Soon – Empires of EVE History Lectures

As I mentioned in my look at the audiobook version of Empires of EVE, the author Andrew Groen was looking for a way to continue telling the tales of New Eden.  Yesterday there was an announcement as to how that might go forward as a podcast.

Coming Soon…

The idea is to tell the stories of EVE Online in a more dynamic way.  As I noted about the audiobook of his work, Andrew Groen reading his book is not as engaging as Andrew Groen talking about the game in front of an audience.  The hope, I gather, is to try to capture some of what is special about seeing him speak in a podcast.

The details were shared as an update to the Kickstarter page for the book.

There is already an Empires of EVE area over on SoundCloud, which I have dutifully followed.  I am sure it will be available via other sources as well.

I am really looking forward to seeing how this plays out.  The stories of EVE Online, the player made lore of the game, is one of the most interesting aspects of the game, so I am always keen to see somebody learning it to save and re-tell.

Cleaning Up Delve

After spending a couple of weeks staged in Hakonen in order to make a mess in and around Tribute and Vale we were now mostly home and ready to clean up the mess in our own region.  Not only were we not mining and ratting as usual… though some intrepid souls stayed behind to rat and mine, which led to a string of carriers and Rorquals being blown up… but the interlopers had laid down structures about the place.  So it was time to start fixing all of that.

Back in the Capital of Delve

On the sovereignty front the reduced mining and ratting had lowered the activity defense multiplier in many systems (all of that sov stuff explained over here) to the point where there were now systems when the industrial index, a measure of how much mining has been going on in a system, dropped below 1.

At that level mining anomalies stop spawning, so to get that back up there was a call for people to go back to belt mining in those systems so that ore sites would start appearing again.  People got on that and ADMs are already up.

Meanwhile it was time to grind down some structures that he been left in our space.  There were plenty of ops going out to shoot things.  I went on a couple, including one that generated a kill mail.  It is always good to be there to see something blown up.

In this case it was a Raitaru left behind by a Pandemic Horde alt corp.  Laying as it did near NPC null space in the region a full scale op was laid down with a Machariel fleet heading out to do the shoot with capitals on alert in case anybody came to contest the shoot in numbers.

We bridged in from the staging Keepstar to a Fortizar in the target system.

Machariels landing at the Fort

From there we warped on grid with the Raitaru.  It had just come out of its timer and we locked it up, launched drones… why waste ammo… and set on it, pausing the repair timer and hitting the damage cap almost immediately.

The Timer paused

As I have noted in the past, the damage cap is there to keep people from blitzing structures.  Instead there is a minimum amount of time it takes to kill one, somewhere in the 25 minute range if I recall correctly.

Machariels anchoring up

It didn’t look like any hostiles were going to show up to defend it, so we just anchored up on the FC and let the drones do the work.

Machs just loafing about the Raitaru

Since this looked to be a milk run, I logged my alt in, got him in an Ibis, the Caldari rookie ship that you get for free any time you dock up in a station in a capsule and have no ships available, and gated him out to the target system.  It was only six gates away and nobody seemed to be camping us very hard since we got back from the north.

Once there I joined the fleet for long enough to get a warp in… the Raitaru wasn’t on grid with a celestial… then dropped fleet, targeted the structure, and added the minuscule firepower of the default Ibis to the assault.

The mighty Ibis fires on the Raitaru

I was mildly surprise/bemused that I didn’t have a skin for the ship.  Last year’s Yoiul Festival had skins for many ships, including the rookie ships, and I thought I had picked up an appropriate one for all of my characters.  Have to go check up on that, I might have forgotten to activate it.

Anyway, for some reason it is always a bit of fun to get one of the most modest ships in the game on a kill mail.  I left him orbiting and shooting as the structure was eventually worn down and began brewing up to explode.

Raitaru death throes

The Ibis wasn’t in the lowest damage spot on the kill mail even having arrived late and having single, low power weapon.  It is near the bottom, but not at the bottom, though I am sure the vagaries of the damage cap and people warping in at the last minute to get on the kill account for the elevated position.

And that was that.  We took gates back to the Keepstar and stood down to wait for the next call to help clean up the region.  Soon things should be back to normal.

I will be interested to see the August edition of the monthly economic report to see how much change a couple weeks away from the region changed the mining and ratting numbers.

Home from Hakonen

The deployment to Hakonen was declared over earlier this week.  GSOL, the logistics masters who make deployments possible, quietly packed up their stuff first to go pave the way back to Delve. Then the official announcement came for caps and subcaps to start heading south for home.

A variety of reasons have come up to explain our return to Delve including Pandemic Horde deploying to attack the region, TEST moving in next door to Hakonen letting the north concentrate on both of us easily, the developing situation in the southwest of null sec, TEST deploying back home, the foreseeable break between TEST and CO2, or the fact that we only planned to hang out for about a month in Hakonen in any case.

Pick whatever narrative or combinations thereof you prefer.  Regardless of which you choose, we were told to come home.

My usual plan for moves is to get in the first subcap move op I see, because I rarely find a second one.  I wanted to get my Typhoon back to Delve.  I traveled light for the trip up to Lonetrek, but then bought ships, including the battleship, so my hangar had filled up.  Some of the ships I planned to just have an alt fly to Jita to disassemble and sell on the market, but the Typhoon had suddenly become special, having acquired kill marks in that last capital battle.  So I wanted to get that back home.

Two more orange dots on a hull with many orange dots… but they are special dots

Of course, I missed that first subcap move op… and a second one, which also appeared to be the last one for USTZ… so I was on my own to get stuff back to Delve.

Normally that would be no big deal.  The route back to Delve is mostly through high sec, but I had a couple of problems.

First, having spent time flying the ECM Burst Atron in low sec meant that my security status was bad, having dropped below the -5 threshold.  You can read up on security status here, but that meant I would be a flashing outlaw in everybody’s overview and the faction police in high sec would be calling out my name and shooting at me.  I wanted to fix that before I flew some ships back south, including the wallowing armor tanked Typhoon.

Fortunately for me, you can fix that.  Corrupt CONCORD lets you buy them off by just visiting one of their stations, and there is one just two gates from Hakonen in the system of Jan.  You don’t pay them off directly, instead giving them clone soldier tags for which they will wipe all that bad behavior off your record.  I am sure they resell those tags again and pocket the ISK.  People only join CONCORD for the corruption I am told.

The sec status cleaning interface

You can buy the tags on the market, and I had a neutral alt in Jita ready to buy some and run them over, but it turned out they are for sale in such abundance in the CONCORD station that the price is cheaper than Jita.  So I bought what I needed and was soon a citizen in good standing again.

My sec status repaired

I repaired my sec status because of the second problem.  In order to avoid gate guns and other issues that come from fighting a war in some place other than null sec, there had been a number of cross declarations of war between alliances.

Everybody loves a war!

War declarations mean you can freely shoot people from the other side in high sec space, making the run back to Delve, which is mostly through high sec, more risky.  I didn’t want to be tackled by somebody with a war dec on us and have the faction police come and finish the job for them.  That is what happened on this kill mail.  I’m bad enough at PvP without the NPCs coming in to assist.

So, all set, I started out with a couple of small ships, my alt flying a Purifier stealth bomber and Wilhelm flying a Jackdaw destroyer.

The station undock was camped, but we put an Astrahus citadel straight off the undock so you can insta-warp to it upon loading in space before anybody can lock and shoot you.  I landed at the citadel, then warped off to the first gate.  I opted to avoid the straight, obvious route out off Hakonen through Nalvula and Jan, as both those gates were camped as well at various times.  Instead I headed to Oimmo in high sec and then started navigating for home from there.  A slightly different path, and two extra gates, but much safer.

The Purifier, warping faster, ended up getting ahead, so I decided to see if he could take a Lucky Clash event site on his own.  They were scattered all over New Eden when I started the move.

A Lucky Clash casino station

The Purifier had no problem taking on the one Redtail Shark attacker by warping in at range and pelting him with torpedoes from a distance.

Purifier off to loot the wreck

Meanwhile, no war targets had appeared.  The thing about wars decs in high sec is that the hostiles tend to just sit in Jita assuming that you’ll go there.  That undock is hot if you have a war dec, but I flew past Jita, going through Sobaseki, and through Amarr, the next big trade hub, without any problem at all.

I even had the Jackdaw try its hand at a Lucky Clash site, which it handled without issue.

Jackdaw taking on a site

It was an uneventful journey home, save for a LowSechnaya Sholupen pilot sitting in a smart bombing battleship on one of the gates in Aridia, and he was out of position and only caught the Purifier with a single cycle which did almost no damage.  I think he was looting the wreck of a Pandemic Horde interceptor that had passed me along the way.  Either way, I was soon home and dry in Delve.

Jumping back to Hakonen with my main, I decided to bring out my Hurricane next.  Again, it was easy to warp past the camp on the undock and head out via the bypass into high sec space.  The Hurricane, moving more slowly than the last two ships, gave me some time to sight see in a way.

It had been interesting being up in Lonetrek again.  All of the battles took place just a few jumps from where I started playing EVE Online.  My first “home” system was Hageken and back in 2006 through 2007 I ranged from there, ran my first missions, started mining, and began playing market games.  Evidence of the latter still exists in the form of dozens of local stations showing up as having crap of mine stored in them.

Assets in Lonetrek, just the top of the list…

So as I flew the slower Hurricane through the region, I looked through the assets list and put things up for sale.  A lot of it I listed pretty cheap, but as some of it has been sitting around for a decade, cheap is relative and it is probably better to have a little ISK out of it than to let it sit even longer.  It was mostly missiles and expanded cargo holds and warp core stabilizers, all of which I was attempting to collect from mission hubs and sell.  There was one ship, a Moa, still sitting in Hageken that was probably the biggest ticket item.

Soon enough though I moved out of Lonetrek and left behind a still unexamined pile of items.

Again I ran into no war targets on my run and, again, I took a moment to run a Lucky Clash site just because.

Hurricane blapping the Lucky Clash intruder

That was it for the night.

I resumed last night thinking that, after two milk runs, I would just roll the fat Typhoon home, passing through Lonetrek and listing more leftovers for sale.  So I jumped back to Hakonen, undocked, and hit the Astrahus again to align out for the same route as before.

Typhoon at the Astrahus and aligning

The slow moving Typhoon lumbered off into high sec space and meandered from gate as I paid more attention to listing things on the market than anything else.  One residual of my days as a trader is that I can list up to 241 items on the market and can do so from many jumps distance.

Eventually I moved out of Lonetrek, but as I did I noticed a war target, first in local, then on my overview.  He was in a frigate and so warped ahead of me as the Typhoon struggled to just align.

Now I am not a very aggressive pilot.  I see a war target in high sec, I am generally by myself and not on voice coms, so I just attempt to evade and escape.  I am not a threat.  But this chap was in Mercenary Coalition, a feisty organization, and headed away from home.  I wondered if he was on coms telling somebody that a fat target was wandering along by itself waiting to be shot.

Sure enough, as passed out a Niarja through the Madirmilire gate I found a Proteus waiting for me on the other side flown by one CJ Longstreet, the same guy in that kill mail I linked above, on the very same gate.  He hit me with a warp scrambler, which meant I couldn’t just use my MJD to jump away.  I figured he would surely web me and that I would never make it back to the gate, so I locked him in return and started shooting and neuting him.  I also headed for the gate, just in case.

As it turned out he did not have a web fit, or didn’t think to use it, because I was soon at the gate, and safety lay on the other side.  Instead, he was neuting me in return, which wasn’t doing very much as he was running a small energy neutralizer and the Typhoon is a passive fit.  Meanwhile,  I certainly wasn’t going to blow him up as the first chap, the one who spotted me a while back, arrived in an Oneiros to rep him and give him capacitor.

So there I was at the gate.  Of course, now I had a weapons timer, a two minute count down before I could jump through, so I stopped firing and watched the clock count down as he slowly chipped away at my layers of armor, hitting me for 300-500 points of damage every attack with his Heavy Electron Blaster IIs.

Waiting is the hardest part…

At one point he figured out what I was up to and stopped shooting, no doubt thinking to follow me through the gate.  But then he changed his mind and started shooting again.  I am not sure how much that respite helped, but it certainly didn’t hurt.  I was closing in on 10% armor when the timer finally ended and I was able to jump through the gate.  Hurray for 132K of EHP!

On the far side there were no hostiles.  There was, however, a selection of citadels open to the public.  So I headed to a nearby Fortizar and tethered up to repair.  I was safe for the moment.

Repairing quietly

Fortunately I have been past war target camps in Niarja.  While it is a bottleneck system on the route between Jita and Amarr, once you are in Niarja you have other options.  There were a few other routes home for me.  So I went to DOTLAN, found a likely looking choice, and headed out again.

I saw one MC pilot in local as I passed through Ashab, something of a bottleneck system as well, but I wasn’t going to or from either of the obvious gates.  And so I went through safely, made my way to Aridia and down into Delve, again without issue.

So all my stuff… well, all my important stuff… is back home in Delve.  There are a few cheap ships still up in Hakonen like the ECM Burst Atrons that I will let a neutral alt pick up and bring to Jita.

The deployment itself was a success for me, but my criteria isn’t likely to be the default for many people.  I saw some big fights, got some good screen shots, got a prestige kill mail, didn’t lose a ship, learned a few new things, got to fly around some old familiar space, and had fun along the way.  That is about all I could ask.

Now to see what is going on back at home.