Tag Archives: Delve

58 Weeks of World War Bee

The week of maximum Imperium smug may have passed, what with all the PAPI structure kills being racked up.  The main battles have been fought, the outposts of our foes that haven’t been destroyed yet are on their way to that fate soon enough.

The war is starting to feel over.

The enemy has fled, the invasion is no more, and the coalition that joined together to attack us hangs together loosely at best.  I might be at the last weekly update.  We’ll see what happens in the coming week, but I could be done.

Not that I ever meant for this weekly post routine to become a thing.  It sort of just happened and, once it started, it seemed like a good idea to just carry on.

There is still a lot going on.  PAPI forces are bunched up in a few systems trying to get out and have moved at a slow enough pace that, thanks to CCP having systems with very similar names in Catch, other groups have been able to setup bait cyno beacons that continue to provide juicy targets like this FinFleet Ragnarok.

And, with thousands of capital ships in motion across null sec, there is now apparently a jump fuel shortage with isotopes of all four flavors being scarce, which has caused prices to jump dramatically. (It isn’t all Imperium spies in Pandemic Horde relisting things on the market.)  The CCP scarcity drive made ice mining less productive and broke ice belts in some places so that there just isn’t anywhere close to enough supply arriving on the market to cope with the huge demand.

The PAPI trail of tears back to the Dronelands may be an extended journey.

Then there are the organizational shakeups underway as various groups shed members or recruit from traumatized alliances whose members are fed up.

Sov losses and member movement

There will also no doubt be a shift in the alliance coalition structures as PAPI breaks up into smaller regional groups.

The Mittani announced a general moratorium on accepting members of PAPI alliances into the Imperium for the next couple of months.  We are not seeking fair weather friends.  I am not sure how diligently this will be enforced, but you can expect that if you were in PAPI then KarmaFleet won’t be recruiting you for the time being. (Unless you made the Operation PAPIclip list.)

One Year Ago

The CCP update included armor plate tiericide and EDENCOM turned hostile towards anybody supporting the Triglavian invasion.

We lost the Keepstar in IGE-RI in Fountain and our tactics did not extract much of a penalty from the attackers.

When we got to the Y-2ANO Keepstar we had changed up enough to make PAPI pay for reinforcing it.

In the Week 6 Update I noted that Fountain was almost completely lost to the Imperium, that Legacy was getting pushed back in Querious, and we dropped 70 Athanors in Esoteria just to annoy TEST. (68 anchored successfully.)

Delve

As I mentioned last week, all the ihubs in Delve have been taken and the focus has turned to clearing out structures left behind by PAPI in their retreat.  There have been lots of structures to kill, with resistance by PAPI tapering off to almost nothing.  There are a few PAPI members who are out there trying to grab the cores when the structured die, and they have had some success, but mostly it is just things getting blown up.

Of course, the big kill of the week was the Tower of Legends, the primary PAPI staging Keepstar, but it was hardly the only Keepstar to die this past week.

The Tower of Legends brought down

The Delve campaign report shows this, with more than 3.5 trillion ISK destroyed in the region over the past week, 94% of which has been PAPI ships and structures.

Delve Campaign Report – Week 58

Listing out just the PAPI losses by type, you can see that structures dominated the list.

Week 58 – Top 15 PAPI Losses by Type

That is a lot of structure bashing that went on in Delve, including 7 Keepstars… and apparently a lot of expensive capsules.  I read somewhere that defense was so easy that nobody should ever lose a Keepstar.  Maybe TEST will defend some of theirs.

Other Theaters

Fountain has been purged of PAPI ihubs, save for the constellation that LowSechnaya Sholupen (LSH) has.  They should not be confused with NullSechnaya Sholupen (NSH) who were part of the PAPI coalition.

Querious has been getting cleared out.  Brave still holds some ihubs and has structures all over… again, they were clearly committed to living there… but have mostly fled the region.  There are unreinforced Brave structures in Querious just sitting there, not unanchoring, waiting to be blown up.  We even got on in an abandoned state the other day, an Athanor, which turned into a 3 billion ISK loot pinata for GSOL.

Period Basis has also been getting some attention, but a lot of the focus has been on Catch, where TEST had to retake an ihub in a system where they had a Keepstar for the evacuation route.

Catch – Aug 15, 2021

I’ve marked the travel waypoint and the system with the bait beacon, CCP having nicely put two systems in the same region that have very similar names to help make this possible. (There are also two systems that start with “GE-” in Catch, so CCP had something in mind or the random name generator blessed the region twice.)

My Participation

I went on quite a few fleets this past week.  As I have said, there were a lot of structures to kill.  While I was out in my Bhaalgorn a few times, most of the week was work for bombers and blops.  My Purifier undocked over and over.

Another structure out there to bash

And then there were the blops pilots who were ferrying us all over Delve and Querious.  I will say that conduit jump, where the black ops battleship and 30 bombers go in one jump, has become a useful features.

A Redeemer blops lighting a covert cyno

While there were a few attempts to interfere with our shoots, I made it through the week without loss, leaving my war time total as:

  • Ares interceptor – 18
  • Malediction interceptor – 7
  • Drake battle cruiser – 7
  • Atron entosis frigate – 7
  • Cormorant destroyer – 5
  • Purifier stealth bomber – 5
  • Crusader interceptor – 5
  • Rokh battleship – 5
  • Scimitar T2 logi – 5
  • Ferox battle cruiser – 4
  • Jackdaw destroyer – 4
  • Scalpel T2 logi frigate – 3
  • Guardian T2 logi – 2
  • Sabre interdictor – 1
  • Eagle heavy assault cruiser – 1
  • Scythe T1 logi – 1
  • Raven battleship – 1
  • Crucifier ECM frigate – 1
  • Gnosis battlecruiser – 1
  • Bifrost command destroyer – 1
  • Hurricane battle cruiser – 1
  • Sigil entosis industrial – 1
  • Mobile Small Warp Disruptor I – 1

Other Items

The propaganda party never stops as Srsli put together another music video for the Imperium.

CCP has gone into its August hibernation mode and the patch update for August so far was pretty minor.  They haven’t mentioned the war lately, but they only seem interested in it when it produces a couple of Guinness Book world records, which happened at FWST-8 and M2-XFE.

This is in contrast to the Casino War where CCP covered events, mentioned it in their video series The Scope, and even tried to name the war.  Now CCP seems more interested in stagnating the game by strangling the economy.

On the weekly peak concurrent user numbers we crossed the 29K line again.  Oddly Monday was close to that peak number, hitting 29,033.  It wasn’t a holiday anywhere that I can recall, so it must have been the continuation of the Sunday peak and the orgy of entosis and destruction that was going on as the Imperium worked on clearing out Delve, Fountain, Querious, and Period Basis.  But Sunday just eked the top number for the week, hitting 29,111.

  • Day 1 – 38,838
  • Week 1 – 37,034
  • Week 2 – 34,799
  • Week 3 – 34,692
  • Week 4 – 35,583
  • Week 5 – 35,479
  • Week 6 – 34,974
  • Week 7 – 38,299
  • Week 8 – 35,650
  • Week 9 – 35,075
  • Week 10 – 35,812
  • Week 11 – 35,165
  • Week 12 – 36,671
  • Week 13 – 35,618
  • Week 14 – 39,681
  • Week 15 – 40,359
  • Week 16 – 36,642
  • Week 17 – 37,695
  • Week 18 – 36,632
  • Week 19 – 35,816 (Saturday)
  • Week 20 – 37,628 (Saturday)
  • Week 21 – 34,888
  • Week 22 – 33,264
  • Week 23 – 33,149
  • Week 24 – 32,807 (Saturday)
  • Week 25 – 31,611
  • Week 26 – 39,667 (Saturday)
  • Week 27 – 34,989 (Saturday)
  • Week 28 – 34,713
  • Week 29 – 35,996
  • Week 30 – 38,323
  • Week 31 – 38,167
  • Week 32 – 37,259
  • Week 33 – 35,886 (Saturday)
  • Week 34 – 35,626
  • Week 35 – 35,379
  • Week 36 – 35,085
  • Week 37 – 34,394
  • Week 38 – 36,319
  • Week 39 – 35,597 (Saturday)
  • Week 40 – 35,384 (Saturday)
  • Week 41 – 33,708
  • Week 42 – 33,521
  • Week 43 – 33,731
  • Week 44 – 33,742 (Saturday)
  • Week 45 – 33,758
  • Week 46 – 31,768
  • Week 47 – 29,898
  • Week 48 – 31,462 (Monday)
  • Week 49 – 27,914
  • Week 50 – 26,045
  • Week 51 – 25,661
  • Week 52 – 24,262
  • Week 53 – 24,290
  • Week 54 – 24,922
  • Week 55 – 26,259 (Saturday)
  • Week 56 – 27,176
  • Week 57 – 29,953
  • Week 58 – 29,111

Related

Surprise! The change in fortunes in the war generated a lot of writing!

Towards a New Delve

There is a bit of a tug of war about whether or not World War Bee is over.  PAPI is certainly keen to close the books on war now that they are headed home while the Imperium wants to keep counting coup as they clear out all the structures that Legacy in general, and TEST in particular, dropped in Delve.

Seriously, if anybody ever tries to dispute that Legacy was fully committed to moving into Imperium space to live there, the amount of stuff they anchored in Delve confirms their intention, misguided though it ended up.

At some point though, the current wave of destruction will wrap up, PAPI sovereignty will be taken and their structures all smashed and the war will be over in Delve.

And then there will be a new Delve to build.

The view from 1DQ1-A and old Delve

The old Delve, the Delve before the invasion, came about after our retreat from the north at the end of the Casino War, a conflict we unambiguously lost.

Back then citadels were new and lacked some of the modern conveniences which we have grown to expect in places where we dock up… things like the ability to insure your ship.  We had to go to a old style station to do that back in 2016.

So there was some learning to do and mistakes to be made as more structures were deployed in our new home region.

And then came the era of the Delve Time Unit and the Imperium went a bit crazy.  Mining and ratting was huge for a while and the wealth and resources led to a building boom where we were dropping new Keepstars just to say we had another one.  Every corp wanted to have their own.  It was chaos.

If was had come to Delve towards the end of that era, there might have been a different tale to tell.  I am not saying we would have lost, but we would have been a lot less ready to defend ourselves.

Oddly, a couple of things CCP did helped us prepare for war.

The first thing was the Drifter invasion.  We were in the midst of glassing Tribute and Vale of the Silent when CCP launched the Drifter event that had powerful NPCs attacking Upwell structures in null sec.

Drifter Forces Hitting a Raitaru

We bitched and moaned about that turn of events.  It decided the fate of that war, sending us home to defend our structures from NPCs.  It also looked like a heavy handed jab at the Imperium as the Drifters seemed to be focused on Delve to the exclusion of other null sec regions.  The Goon identity in EVE Online holds the belief that CCP is always ready to work against them, so there is nothing like a CCP launched event that seems to be targeting Goons to spur their already acute paranoia.

But there was an upside to the whole thing.  Having NPCs hitting structures, NPCs which could be defeated if the structure was setup right and a gunner could get in place, meant an overall review of structure requirements in the coalition.  There were standard fits laid out and every structure had to subscribe to the right access control list so that gunners could drop in at need, even if the owning corp wasn’t online.

Then there was the Forsaken Fortress update from CCP.  That still seems like a bit of a betrayal, the removal of asset safety, but the new abandoned state was necessary to thin out some of the structure spam that was becoming a blight in New Eden.

That led to another review and purge of structures in the coalition, as we went out to blow up our own abandoned structures before anybody else got the idea in their head.

So we had done a bit of work before World War Bee kicked off, but the structure situation in Delve was pretty chaotic, and 1DQ1-A was ahead of the pack in that department, with three Keepstars… expanded to five during the war… several Sotiyos, and a constellation of faction Fortizars, prizes from the war against Guardians of the Galaxy in 2018.

The 1DQ main grid with 4 Keeps, 2 Sotiyos, a Tatara, and some of the Fortizars

Outside of our final constellation everything that we couldn’t pull down was razed.  The one minor benefit was that a lot of the structures went down without cores, which made their loss a bit cheaper, but it was still a large hit.  If the PAPI war objective had been to glass Delve, they could have claimed victory in the war and gone away unassailable in their arguments.  Instead there was the whole war of extermination and Legacy moving into our space to live, which tainted their gains and gave the Imperium both an attainable win condition as well as plenty of targets to shoot in revenge.

But now that the cleansing of Delve is reaching is crescendo, with hostile Keepstars starting to fall, it is time to look forward to the new plan for Delve.

I had been thinking about what we would do after the war, long before The Mittani said this past weekend that things would be different in the region when it came to structures.  To start with, we are well past the era of the Delve Time Unit I linked above.  We have been in an era of scarcity and resources are no longer ready to hand the way they were back in that time, so there would naturally be a more conservative approach to structures going forward.

There are already some structures on the main 1DQ grid being unachored for deployment elsewhere in the region, a cheaper solution than building and deploying new ones.

But there are also the lessons of the war.  Loss teaches lessons that victory might otherwise hide, and we lost a lot in the war.  I am sure the big brains in the coalition have already worked out how to set things up more optimally for defense.  The Mittani promised a new plan that would make Delve even more difficult to attack should we face an invasion again.

And then there are the changes that may come from CCP.  PAPI blaming citadel mechanics in part for their loss is probably overstating the problem, but there are likely some changes in those mechanics coming in light of what happened.  It remains to be seen what conclusions, if any, CCP might draw from the war, but I might guess at a couple.

The first likely candidate would involved carriers and supercarriers and how they can stay safe and tethered on a structure while sending their fighters out to guard a gate, attack a fleet, or burn down a structure on grid.  Both sides used this in the war and it was one of the key defensive features of the final Imperium constellation in Delve.

A second might be another review of structure density, perhaps limiting the number of structures on a single grid.

And then there are the usual parameters around defense, offense, and cost that CCP might take a swing at as well.

But a new Delve is coming.  I will be interested to see how it shapes up.

Destroying the Forge of Heroes

Last night saw the first big structure big structure kills in PAPI’s staging system in Delve.

It was just a few weeks ago that we were prodding the already somnolent PAPI by gating into T5ZI and and shooting their structures while they sat around and watched, unable to form up enough pilots to stop us on a Saturday night.  Now we were back into the viper’s nest to blow up some of those very same structures.

A TEST Sotiyo waits for us

With PAPI’s failed assault on 1DQ last week and the subsequent announcement that they would be withdrawing from Delve, the Imperium moved into high gear to retake the region.  As I mentioned in yesterday’s war summary, but Sunday afternoon the Imperium had recaptured all of the infrastructure hubs in Delve, the critical piece of the sovereignty mechanics that gives an alliance control over a star system.

In addition to that, the Imperium had also been busy reinforcing hostile structures across the region in order to keep them from being unanchored and carried off by the retreating PAPI forces.  That included the key structures in their staging system of T5ZI.

Those timers started to come due last night, with two Sotiyo engineering complexes and a Tatara mining and refining platform on the menu.  One of the Sotiyos carried the rather dramatic name “Forge of Heroes,” which alone paired it with the Keepstar, named “Tower of Legends,” as a primary target.  Hubris must bring down wrath.

As the time approached the capitals and super capitals undocked and jumped one system over, going from 1DQ to T5ZI.  There is no cyno jammer there any more and it is easier to spend the jump fuel than try to shove all those big ships through the gate.  They landed at cynos on the Fortizar that was anchored on the Keepstar grid in T5ZI, which is where all the targets were located.

The big toys jumping in

The first target was a different Sotiyo with a less pretentious name (Mad Scientist’s Lab or something) to which all the supers warped to in order to start the attack.

Open fire on the Sotiyo

The titans are big and obvious, but up above them is a flat formation of supercarriers who were there to add their fighters to the mix.

Closer up on the supercarriers

As that was under way there was also a Tatara was also out and available.  Some of the subcaps went over to start on it in order to pause the timer.

The first Sotiyo was beaten down, though it took some time in no small because there were so many ships in on the shoot, which turned the tidi up effectively slowing everything down.  But it was worn down and exploded nicely.

The first Sotiyo blows up

You can see the bubbles put up during the last could percent of hull in order to keep any any PAPI ships from slipping in and grabbing the quantum core, that valuable “always drops” item that has been required to activate all citadels since the update in January added in grandfathered structures.  The Sotiyo core is worth 10 billion ISK.

From there everybody shifted over to the Tatara and applied fire to it.

A new target for the big toys

That too blew up nicely.

The Tatara begins to brew up

Once again you can see the bubbles up to thwart core theft as well as the two Rorquals that GSOL jumped in to collect the core, any loot, and salvage from the kill.

During this the Keepstar, the “Tower of Legends,” came out for its armor timer.  We were not going to get to kill it, but fighters were sent out to hit it so as to advance the destruction cycle to the final phase, the hull timer.

And then the “Forge of Heros” hull timer came up and that was the next target for us.

The turn of the Forge of Heroes

I have a picture from the other side with overview brackets turned on, which marks every ship, fighter, and drone with an icon.  You may need to click on it and view it full size to get a good look at how many ships were on grid.

Brackets on showing ships on grid

The Sotiyo was gunned and even managed to kill a few of the attacking ships, including a carrier.  But the outcome was ordained.  The Sotiyo blew up.

The Forge of Heroes undone

Unfortunately, neither Sotiyo generated a kill mail.  That sometimes happens when there are a lot of players on a kill mail.  We had that same issue with the four Keepstars we blew up in NPC Delve back in Octobers.  We would have to content ourselves with the Tatara kill mail and some of the fighter kills.  There were also a few ships in build in the Satiyo that showed up as kills.

After that the show was over.  The system went from about 1,200 people down to a few hundred pretty quickly as the capitals jumped out and the subcaps headed for the gate.

A crowd at the gate… and a Trig dread coming to take the gate with us

The next big show will be the Keepstar.  That timer is set.

The time is foretold – Thursday at around 23:59 UTC

I am sure the crowd wanting to join in on that kill will be even bigger, and the carnage even greater as a Keepstar’s defenses can be quite formidable.  Killing that will terminate a lot of clones locked up in the station along with sending a lot of left behind gear to asset safety.

All of that will end up in Irmalin, in the Khanid region, 30 days down the road.  I am sure there will be some camping of that station when the time comes.

57 Weeks of World War Bee – Victory in Delve

The tide certainly turned this past week.

The battle of 1DQ1-A on August 2nd, the final assault on the Imperium capitol, turned out to be the high water mark of the PAPI invasion.  Even as PAPI forces, trapped in the bubble field, were being routed, alliances in the Legacy coalition began to unanchor structures that they wanted to save from any Imperium counter stroke.

This mid-fight move caught Legacy’s allies in the PAPI coalition by surprise, so rather than getting word from their leaders many PAPI coalition members found out due to Bjorn Bee mentioning it on his stream.

PAPI started trying to pull out of Delve gracefully as the Imperium did its all it can to hinder tham.  PAPI told their line members they would have two weeks to get their stuff out of the region, but the Imperium’s pressure moved that up to “get out this weekend or asset safety!”  And even then some groups, like Pandemic Horde, just punted on their late subcap move ops, leaving some of their line members to fend for themselves.

As for TEST, whose leadership were the ones to declare the war of extermination, they have been offered a home in Outer Passage, possibly the second furthest region from Delve, and only because somebody else wants Cobalt Edge, the furthest region.

To get there they have a long march ahead hauling all of their stuff. (Sometimes in the wrong ship for the job.)

The TEST Route from Delve to Outer Passage

Once there, behind the bulk of WinterCo, Fraternity has promised to remain blue to them.  In return Fraternity will now receive a share of the Tranquility Trading Consortium profits, presumably out of TEST’s cut, TEST no longer being the leader of a major coalition, but a supplicant.  Legacy Coalition is dead.

Brave is said to be set to take up some space in western Geminate, under the cover of PanFam.  Evictus is going to head back to Esoteria where they still hold some space, while rumor has it that Federation Uprising and Eternal Requiem might just disband, though they seem to be holding together for the moment.

Then, in a sign of a conflict to come, the Army of Mango Alliance that it was also leaving Legacy behind and forming a new coalition under the Pan-Intergalactic Business Community banner, the PBIC.

Those who pay attention may recall that is the name of the alliance that “won” EVE Online on the Serenity server by becoming the all powerful ruler of New Eden there.  That is sure to draw attention and ire from some of the other Chinese alliances on Tranquility.  AOM, Fraternity, Ranger Regiment, Dracarys, as well as some corporations like the People’s Liberation Army all came from the Serenity server in China.  I don’t recall who was on vs. against the PBIC there, but I suspect that this move will make them choose up sides.

And, finally, there has been a lot of talk in the Imperium about historical analogies and the name of the war.  I have favored Napoleon’s retreat from Moscow, but it lacks meme-ready imagery and a snappy name.  Things that have floated around include Afgoonistan and Dumbkirk.  But the one that has gained some traction is Beeitnam, so now INN is rebranding the war as that.  I’m sticking with World War Bee for the sake of consistency, as I did with the Casino War when everybody was trying to rebrand that further down the road.

One Year Ago

CCP announced Metaliminal Storms, some of which would keep you from cloaking.

We were running out to Stain to work with the Russians who were happy to take shots at TEST.

The ihubs in Fountain were largely lost and we were starting to fight on Keepstars in the region.

In my week five update I noted that French ConneXion had joined the Imperium and that PAPI was already confused about who was invading whom, demanding that we attack them.  Also, Fountain Frank made his meme debut.

The latest update on 35m ISK Corms

He is now Frank triumphant.

Delve Front

The situation went down hill fast for PAPI in Delve.  But at least we’re done with that Siege of 1DQ map that I have been running every week since late April.  The bubble sphere around the T5ZI gate in 1DQ is gone as the Imperium no longer wants to hinder traffic through the gate, since traffic is pretty much all us going out to attack PAPI.

There is an Amarr jump gate in the middle of that

The week started with the final assault on 1DQ that I mentions above, which went south fast and led to PAPI declaring that they were leaving Delve.

PAPI, attempting to keep their evacuation route secure, formed up multiple fleets when the Imperium went to contest the ihub in 1-SMEB on Tuesday.  This also went poorly for PAPI.

They continued to put up fleets to skirmish with us up into Wednesday, then ihubs began to fall and the rush for the exits began.  By Friday Imperium fleets were moving about the region unhindered save for the occasional gunner in a citadel.  Even in T5ZI, where they occasionally put up a small gate camp, structure shooting fleets went about their business with impunity.

I was considering dragging out the old Delve map template I had with each of the constellations named and highlighted in order to chart progress made on ihubs, but then the Imperium went all out with fleets around the clock for structure bashes and entosis ops and… well… there are no PAPI held ihubs in Delve any more.  The last few fell Sunday afternoon.

Delve – Aug 8, 2021

I haven’t spent this much time in fleets since the M2-XFE hell camp.

TEST, who had planned to move into Delve and live there after the war, left structures all over the region and was in the process of trying to unanchor most of them.  That takes almost a week and has to start over again if the structure is reinforced, so we have been interrupting as many as we can.  It seems unlikely that TEST or PAPI will be around in force in Delve by the time the unachoring process can cycle through again.  TEST is going to lose a lot of structures as they seemed to have dropped things as haphazardly as we did back in the day.  That will be the first payment extracted from TEST.

The Delve campaign report for week 57 bears out how much went on this week.

Delve Campaign Week 57

The report broke because Pandemic Horde and/or capsule counts caused an error, but rolling back a day puts the total losses at 1.6 trillion ISK, with PH accounting for 232 billion.  TEST rang up an amazing 322 billion ISK in additional losses on Sunday, so the total for the week is probably close to 2 trillion ISK.  The is a 4x increase and the structure losses are still coming.  Fortizars are being dropped on grid with each of the PAPI Keepstars to serve as platforms from which to destroy them.

Other Theaters

The Initiative went to town in Fountain, starting to purge ihubs from west to east on the map, starting with the Federation Uprising space.

Fountain – Aug 8, 2021

They have vowed to cleanse the region of PAPI.

Over in Querious, Imperium forces have taken the ihubs in “Fake Querious,” the portion of the region that is an enclave within Delve space, as well as driving along the north of the region, which happens to be the PAPI evacuation route.

Querious – Aug 8, 2021

It may not be the Brave route though.  I was in Badivefi on Sunday and there were a lot of Brave pilots docked up in the NPC stations there.

And even down in Period Basis PAPI ihubs have started being purged.

Period Basis – Aug 8, 2021

The 13 month long assault on the Imperium is being rolled back in just days.

My Participation

A busy week.  I was there for the grand assault on 1DQ, the fight over the 1-SMEB ihub, and for a bunch of structure shoots.  I did lose a Sabre in the 1-SMEB fight, but that is what Sabres are for.

In tidi you get to watch your ship go boom

I also lost another Atron entosis ship along the way.  I got a bit ahead of the pack.  But mostly I was out helping tear down PAPI structures.

Shooting PAPI structures in T5ZI in my Bhaalgorn

The Imperium is very serious about making all those structures explode.

A TEST faction Fortizar explodes in 39P

At the end of the week, my total losses for the war added up to:

  • Ares interceptor – 18
  • Malediction interceptor – 7
  • Drake battle cruiser – 7
  • Atron entosis frigate – 7
  • Cormorant destroyer – 5
  • Purifier stealth bomber – 5
  • Crusader interceptor – 5
  • Rokh battleship – 5
  • Scimitar T2 logi – 5
  • Ferox battle cruiser – 4
  • Jackdaw destroyer – 4
  • Scalpel T2 logi frigate – 3
  • Guardian T2 logi – 2
  • Sabre interdictor – 1
  • Eagle heavy assault cruiser – 1
  • Scythe T1 logi – 1
  • Raven battleship – 1
  • Crucifier ECM frigate – 1
  • Gnosis battlecruiser – 1
  • Bifrost command destroyer – 1
  • Hurricane battle cruiser – 1
  • Sigil entosis industrial – 1
  • Mobile Small Warp Disruptor I – 1

Other Items

Amarr Foundation Day arrived, with login rewards and events for players.

Your Foundation Day login rewards

Then there was good news on the peak concurrent user front this week, with the uptick in war activities driving the number up to nearly 30K concurrent on Sunday.  After several weeks where the count never topped 25K, week 57 saw every day in the 26-28K range.

  • Day 1 – 38,838
  • Week 1 – 37,034
  • Week 2 – 34,799
  • Week 3 – 34,692
  • Week 4 – 35,583
  • Week 5 – 35,479
  • Week 6 – 34,974
  • Week 7 – 38,299
  • Week 8 – 35,650
  • Week 9 – 35,075
  • Week 10 – 35,812
  • Week 11 – 35,165
  • Week 12 – 36,671
  • Week 13 – 35,618
  • Week 14 – 39,681
  • Week 15 – 40,359
  • Week 16 – 36,642
  • Week 17 – 37,695
  • Week 18 – 36,632
  • Week 19 – 35,816 (Saturday)
  • Week 20 – 37,628 (Saturday)
  • Week 21 – 34,888
  • Week 22 – 33,264
  • Week 23 – 33,149
  • Week 24 – 32,807 (Saturday)
  • Week 25 – 31,611
  • Week 26 – 39,667 (Saturday)
  • Week 27 – 34,989 (Saturday)
  • Week 28 – 34,713
  • Week 29 – 35,996
  • Week 30 – 38,323
  • Week 31 – 38,167
  • Week 32 – 37,259
  • Week 33 – 35,886 (Saturday)
  • Week 34 – 35,626
  • Week 35 – 35,379
  • Week 36 – 35,085
  • Week 37 – 34,394
  • Week 38 – 36,319
  • Week 39 – 35,597 (Saturday)
  • Week 40 – 35,384 (Saturday)
  • Week 41 – 33,708
  • Week 42 – 33,521
  • Week 43 – 33,731
  • Week 44 – 33,742 (Saturday)
  • Week 45 – 33,758
  • Week 46 – 31,768
  • Week 47 – 29,898
  • Week 48 – 31,462 (Monday)
  • Week 49 – 27,914
  • Week 50 – 26,045
  • Week 51 – 25,661
  • Week 52 – 24,262
  • Week 53 – 24,290
  • Week 54 – 24,922
  • Week 55 – 26,259 (Saturday)
  • Week 56 – 27,176
  • Week 57 – 29,953

Related

Operations in Delve as World War Bee Continues

The announcement of the PAPI withdrawal from Delve following Monday’s final drive against 1DQ1-A has led to an upsurge in activity in the region.

Some of that is to be expected.  PAPI will have move ops running and the Imperium has a few regions of space to reclaim.  We were certainly wasting little time in Delve, lighting up ihubs and TCUs with enotsis ops the next day.

Delve – Aug 4, 2021

The systems highlighted with the orange aura have been targeted by the Imperium. (Some of which have already been taken since I took that screen shot.)

Some of those systems likely don’t concern PAPI very much, but they can’t let them all go because the Imperium has a plan.

After committing to more than half a year of stubborn defense in an attempt to convince PAPI that they should pack up and go home, we’re now trying to make that evacuation as costly as possible.  We aspire to turn an orderly withdrawal into Napoleon’s retreat from Moscow if we can.

Around Delve, Querious, and Period Basis the Imperium has been dispatching fleets to destroy Anisblex jump bridges belonging to PAPI in order to hinder their movement.

A reinforced Ansiblex waiting to be destroyed

More than 20 have been destroyed since the end of the big battle.

Some kills from yesterday… I am on a couple of those

And if the Imperium succeeds in taking the ihubs in key systems, PAPI won’t be able to simply throw up a replacement Ansiblex, so they have to form up and defend some systems rather than just moving home.

This was the case in 1-SMEB, a key system in Delve as it is the gateway to Aridia, a low sec region that is also the shortest route home for many of the PAPI alliances.  The Imperium being able to block that system would me at least some hazard getting through or a need to re-route moves through Fountain or Querious, extending the route home and leaving more opportunity for mishap.

When the Imperium started hitting the 1-SMEB ihub, PAPI had to respond.  And when they started spinning up fleets we responded in kind.  Once again we had more than 2,000 people in a system battling over an ihub.

A HAC Fleet in the bubbles, their logi in the foreground

That kicked off when I was busy with work, but carried on long enough that I could jump in to the fight.  When I was ready there was a call for interdictors to hold down the hostiles, so I jumped into a Sabre I had in my hangar, insured it because I was sure it would get blown up, and headed to the fleet titan to get bridged in.

The instructions for dictors were pretty simple; get on the enemy fleets and bubble them so that couldn’t leave.  In I went.

Flying my Sabre into the thick of things

I managed to deploy a few bubbles and take a few potshots with my gun, but the node was not reinforced, or so I guess, and the fight degraded performance beyond what the 10% tidi number indicates.  Lots of people were having problems with modules not cycling down.  My interdiction sphere launcher went to reload after the first three bubbles and never finished.

PAPI’s guns managed to cycle on me however, and I lost my Sabre as expected.  I had plenty of time to file for reimbursement while waiting for my ship to finally explode.  I got paid before the animation finished.  Then I waited for my self-destruct… 2 minutes in 10% tidi is 20 minutes in real time… which let me watch the battle for a while.

Ishtars from The Initiative flying past as I wait

Then I reshipped back in 1DQ.  But I didn’t get back in the fight.  The results had been decided and there was no reason to throw more people at the node.

We won.  We reinforced the ihub and killed a lot of PAPI ships to according to the battle report.  Objective and ISK war.

Battle Report Header

There is also a John Hartley video of the battle, if you enjoy those.  I like the music choice.

Losing that ihub match means PAPI is going to need to take a break from packing and come back to contest that ihub today at 19:52 UTC, or about two and a half hours after this post goes live.  We shall see how that turns out.

Meanwhile, along with ihubs and Ansiblex jump gates, fleets have also been setting timers on structures that TEST has been trying to unanchor.  Setting a timer makes them start the unanchoring timer from scratch again, even if we don’t contest the timer.

The reason for this is pretty obvious.  PAPI’s biggest claim to victory is the amount of destruction they imposed on the Imperium.  We want to hold those structures in place to give us a chance to even up that score a bit.

So the war is not over.  There is still a lot of work to be done on both sides.

Addendum: The 1-SMEB ihub fell to the Imperium.

Related:

PAPI Begins Pulling Out of Delve

Starting at peak EUTZ prime time yesterday PAPI finally put their long anticipated attack plan into motion.  They pushed a large number of subcaps through the gate between 1DQ and T5ZI while simultaneously black ops bridging strategic cruiser fleets into systems within the O-EIMK constellation in order to try and gain some sort of foothold.

O-EIMK Constellation – Aug 2, 2021

Pings went out for fleets on both sides.  It happened to be lunch time for me so I was able to jump in and get in the Mister Vee Eagle fleet, which warped off to the T5ZI gate in 1DQ in order to help with the defense.  Other fleets joined in and super carriers undocked and sent their fighters to the gate as well.

Off to the defense in the bubble sphere around the gate

Even as I logged in tidi was hitting 10% and there were more than 2,000 capsuleers in 1DQ, a number that would pass 4,000 at the peak of the battle.

It did not go well for PAPI.  Fleets coming through the gate into 1DQ were met with a hail of fire.  While they concentrated on the HAW dreads, Imperium forces chewed through their subcaps.

Ships in the bubbles

While the main line of the Imperium forces held the line in 1DQ, The Initiative moved out to contain the strategic cruiser drops elsewhere in the constellation, thwarting their plans, catching them refitting on a Nestor and destroying them, leaving PAPI few options.  When The Initiative was through with their mission they jumped through into T5ZI to shoot PAPI members attempting to retreat from the battle in 1DQ.

The battle report shows PAPI lost almost 3,000 ships in the clash.

Battle Report Header

The clash was enough to top the peak concurrent user number from the previous week, with 27,350 accounts logged into the game at the height of the battle.

Even before the fight in 1DQ was done there were reports that Legacy alliances were starting to unanchor structures in the areas they had taken from the Imperium, which came as a bit of a surprise to their allies.

As that news began to spread the alliances in PAPI started announcing to their members that they would be pulling out of Delve.  TEST declared victory and then said they would be leaving Delve, Querious, and Period Basis, the territory that they had vowed to live in when the war was done.

Over in the Brave meeting Dunk Dinkle was much more candid about the outcome, declaring that the Imperium had won because we were able to hold together even as the attackers started coming apart, and that they needed to leave Querious to escape the wrath of The Mittani who had apparently extended an offer to change sides about six months back.

On the Imperium side there was much rejoicing.

Celebratory doomsdays on the capitol Keepstar

We stood up to almost the entire rest of null sec for more than a year and came out the other end still in possession of our capitol and most of our assets.  I personally have very few items waiting for me in asset safety from structure losses as we had time and space to retreat back into Delve and then into 1DQ.  And we certainly had more than enough ships and pilots to repel PAPI’s final attack.

As for the war, it is far from over.  The Imperium has only become more charged up with this news.  There is much work to be done.

PAPI still needs to extract themselves from Delve.  The coalition will need to hold tight to get away safely lest the avenging Goons catch them and defeat them in detail.  Some groups will be able to safely retire back to their space.  I can’t see us going across null sec to try and attack Pandemic Horde or Fraternity, and some of the alliances that were in PAPI mostly in name towards the end will probably walk away without much impact.

But Legacy Alliance in general, and TEST in particular… if they think there will be peace living next door in their old space, they are sadly mistaken.  We all remember Vily declaring this a war of extermination against The Imperrium.  And he didn’t say that on fleet coms or in a Legacy town hall or on Talking in Stations, but to a major gaming news site.

When we started this war, we knew that we were fighting this to the end,” Vily told Polygon. “For us, this is a war of extermination. This is a war to the death. We are aiming for the removal of Mittani and The Imperium from Eve Online. […] We are here to purge them.

-Vily, in an interview with Polygon about the war

So expect that to come back to haunt him and those who follow him going forward.

Progodlegend suggested in his initial statement I listened to that TEST would just go back and take up residence in their old space… presumably after evicting some of the Imperium allies who now own a lot of it.  He blamed not being able to defeat the Imperium on game mechanics and claimed that anybody could hole up in a constellation and defend it indefinitely.   However, he didn’t seem keen to test that theory as it later came out that TEST would be headed for the Dronelands, on the eastern side of New Eden, far from Goons.  We’ll see if that is far enough.

As for who won, both sides will claim victory via various metrics and calculations.  Less than a month ago I speculated as to how the war might end.  I was wrong in thinking that PAPI wouldn’t just walk away I guess.  But I did point out that the usual ending in New Eden is that one side gives up and goes away, retreats from the field of conflict and finds a home elsewhere.  In my experience we rarely count that side the winner.

For the moment there is still a celebratory mood in 1DQ.

More V for Victory formations

We withstood the onslaught.  Now to see how the reverse of the flow plays out for us.  The last chapter of World War Bee has yet to be written.

Related:

Saturday Night Action in Delve

It has been a while since I have been in a fight in the was that was worth a post, but last night we had quite the time.  It was time to get Munnins out to shoot things.

Muninns out for a shoot

It started with an innocuous ping from Asher calling for a Muninn fleet.  It was only about 10:30pm local time for me, not too late to join in on something on a Saturday night.

Asher calls

There were about 100 people in fleet when I joined, which swelled up past 150 before we undocked.

When we did undock, we warped over to a titan that bridged us into NOL-M9 in Delve, a system with some history, both old and recent.  In fact, it had been the focus of a clash earlier in the day when PAPI forces tried and failed to kill an Imperium Astrahus in the system.  That structure, now safe, was where we landed.  Once assembled, we moved over to a PAPI Fortizar which we started shooting.  The plan was to try and reinforce and to see if we could draw a response.

Asher kept us appraised of PAPI’s ping status, the joke now being that they have to ping multiple times to get enough pilots into a fleet in order to come fight us.  On our side pings went out with links to The Count from Sesame Street to indicate how many pings they needed.

Six! Six fleet pings! Ah ah ah ah!

Eventually that number would far exceed how high The Count usually takes his numbers on the show.

They put a Falcon on the Fortizar, on tether but as far from us as they could, which seemed to indicate that they would be bridging in an opposing fleet soon.  As the likelihood of its arrival grew, Asher had us split out one gun from out stack to keep on the Fortizar while the rest would be for the battle.

A Ferox fleet joined us, along with some bombers, and PAPI eventually dropped Muninns of their own along with carriers and fax support.  It became a fairly even exchange between the Muninn fleets, but we still managed to set the armor timer for the Fortizar.

Muninns and Carriers around the Fort

And then, with the timer set and no need to split guns any further, Asher noticed that one of the faxes was off tether.  So we loaded up short range, high damage ammo and he brought us in very close, inside the PDS range of the structure, where we took a shot and one of the faxes… and managed a kill.

A fax kill

Then we managed to grab another.  Then another.  And finally a fourth.  Four faxes down.

Four Faxes Destroyed

That turned what was already a bit of smug… we managed to ref one of their structures while in combat when they had capitals on the field… into a very smug moment for us.  Asher warped us off the Fortizar and back to our Astrahus, the job done.

The battle report fell in our favor, helped along by those four faxes.  We got the objective and won the ISK war.

Battle Report Header from NOL-M9

Asher pointed us back towards home in 1DQ1-A and the Muninns and Feroxes started gating back.  But before we got too far, Asher asked us to respond in fleet whether we would like to just go home and stand down or if we wanted to try and reinforce another structure on the way.  We voted to reinforce.

Mind1, who was doing the Saturday night show, got in our fleet and joined in the fun, streaming our progress and laying down a motivational beat.  Did you know that the Imperium has its own official DJ?  It is a glorious thing.  You should check out his stream.

So we stopped one system short of home, in T5ZI-S, the home staging system in Delve for the PAPI coalition, the place where all of their members are supposed to be and where all their ships and supplies are stored.  We were going to hang out in the lion’s den and shoot a structure.  We would see how awake the lion really was.

Not very.

After a while shooting the Fortizar without a response, Asher moved the Muninn fleet over to their main Sotiyo engineering complex, pretentiously named “Forge of Heroes,” in order to see if that would provoke PAPI to action.

Shooting the Sotiyo

You can see in that screen shot, below the Sotiyo, their Keepstar in the system.  That is their main base.  We were that close to the heart of enemy and for a long stretch the only opposition we faced was the gunner in the structure shooting bombs at us.

I have trouble visualizing something like this happening one gate over in 1DQ1-A, our home, where the presence of bads tends to draw an eager response from people looking for combat.

The first response from PAPI was to get out carriers and HAW dreads to make sure we didn’t take out any of their cyno jammers.  Fighters were sent to cover those as that is all that stands between them and the looming menace of our titans and supers.  Progodlegend, the leader with Vily or TEST, got out on the Sotiyo to assess the situation, but didn’t do much otherwise.

The Fortizar was reffed by the Feroxes, who then came over to join us on the Sotiyo.  The hostiles eventually joined us as well.  Asher had us strip a single gun out of our stack yet again to keep on the Sotiyo and then we started going after the hostiles.   They brought a Ferox fleet of their own and it was on.

Time dilation hit 10% at points and there were nearly 1,200 people in the system, but the biggest frustration was that my guns would cycle fast enough so I ended up only getting on every second or third kill mail, the hostile Feroxes were blowing up so fast.

We stayed in range of the Sotiyo and kept one gun on it while blapping hostiles as quickly as our guns would cycle.  The Muninns went relatively unscathed as the hostiles were more focused on support ships and the easier to kill Feroxes.

Combat on the Sotiyo

The Sotiyo was reffed, the armor timer set, after which we saw ourselves out, warping to the gate to 1DQ1-A and jumping through.

Through the gate to home in 1DQ

The battle report was more even this time.  In the scale of the war, these losses were pretty minor.

T5ZI-S battle Report Header

Strategically this did not change anything about the war.  It was a Saturday night lark and the enemy is likely to get their act together and form up to defend the armor timers of the structures we reinforced.  There is little danger of any of them being blown up.

When it comes to demonstrating morale and responses however, this was another stark illustration as to how low things seem to have sunk for PAPI.  We did something on a whim in their main staging system that they haven’t been able to manage in our home next door in all the months since they set down that Keepstar in T5ZI back in November.

Even the Reddit thread about the whole thing was mild.

PAPI, as a coalition, theoretically out numbers us by a ratio of three to one.  But even in their home they could barely get together equal numbers after sending out nearly 50 pings to get people into fleets.  (The Imperium ping count for the same time was 23, at least half of which were images of The Count or The Mittani smugging and sending out battle reports.)

I am reminded of the tale of why the cheetah doesn’t catch the gazelle nearly as often as you might suspect.  The cheetah is just running for his lunch, the gazelle is running for its life.

The Imperium remains motivated despite the odds because we’re fighting for our survival.  I am not sure what PAPI is really fighting for at this point, but if it is for their lunch then they don’t seem to be very hungry.

52 Weeks of World War Bee

This week saw the non-aligned AUTZ null sec alliance Tactical Supremacy give up on its free range lifestyle of the last five years and joined The Initiative.

Put on ice for now

The stated reason was a lack of content for its members.  The move shores up The Initiative’s AUTZ presence, allowing them to work more effectively around the clock.

There were also town hall meetings for NCDot and Pandemic Horde, with the former being pretty down to earth and the latter trying to find something to keep the war going.  In furtherance of keeping the war going, PAPI has formed a high sec SIG to gank Goons and anybody suspected of being Goons, including the new player training group KarmaFleet University.  Gobbins also told his members to stop using the term “contained” when referring to the Imperium’s situation in 1DQ because it becomes a propaganda victory for Goons every time they kill something outside of that constellation.

One Year Ago

It has been a year.  One year ago today the non-invasion pact between the Imperium and Legacy coalition officially lapsed and the war began.

Two days before the start I was still fiddling with stuff in my hangar and wondering what was to come.

When the day hit there were moves/counter moves including the rushed PAPI Keepstar drop in FAT-6P.

And the first of my Monday summary posts went up about the events of day one of the war.  I did not intend for them to be a regular thing, but here we are a year later.

Delve Front

For another week this map fragment, first posted on May 2nd, accurately describes the state of the war in Delve.

O-EIMK Constellation – July 4, 2021

Otherwise is was a week of skirmishes, shenanigans, and avoidance.  One of the highlights of the week is summed up in this video from John Hartley, and Imperium FC.

Still, despite  the situation in the constellation remaining unchanged, looking at the Delve campaign stats for the week the level of skirmishing saw more than twice as many ships and capsules destroyed when it came to total numbers and almost twice in ISK value.

Delve Campaign – Week 52

If you go to the report and change the view to show by ship types you can see the dreads that PAPI lost before that video above along with a few other expensive assets they lost.

Other Theaters

Esoteria is done for the Imperium now while Legacy and FI.RE are pushing on the Imperium holdings in Feythabolis.

I had wondered last week if Red Alliance would come to some sort of agreement with their fellow Russians, and perhaps they did, but Legacy still wants them out it seems.  Red Alliance is down two ihubs and their other four are at risk, along with their holdings in Impass.

Feythabolis – July 4, 2021

It also looks like there is some TCU cleanup going on in the region (orange highlighted systems that otherwise have no ihub in this view.)

In Catch Legacy pushed further into the region from Querious, taking eight more ihubs from Imperium member Dracarys.

Catch – July 4,2021

Looking at the ADMs, Dracarys has been active in these systems.  We will see if Legacy keeps pushing into the region.

My Participation

As with the past few weeks I went on a few small ops, but nothing very exciting.  The biggest op was probably a Cormorant fleet called by Tom Flood to escort Jirai Grepher on his birthday op.  For their birthday, Jirai decided to gate a Naglfar dreadnought into T5ZI, PAPI’s staging system, to see how long he would last.  We went along to give him a bit of cover.

Into T5ZI

Jirai got a few kills before a PAPI Ragnarok hit him with a doomsday… PAPI undocked a titan… blotting him out.  I got on a few kills as well before my Cormorant got splashed.  That added one more to my list of losses, though the op qualified for SRP so I got the ISK to buy a new Corm.

My war losses so far:

  • Ares interceptor – 18
  • Malediction interceptor – 7
  • Drake battle cruiser – 7
  • Atron entosis frigate – 6
  • Cormorant destroyer – 5
  • Purifier stealth bomber – 5
  • Crusader interceptor – 5
  • Rokh battleship – 5
  • Scimitar T2 logi – 5
  • Ferox battle cruiser – 4
  • Jackdaw destroyer – 4
  • Guardian T2 logi – 2
  • Scalpel T2 logi frigate – 2
  • Scythe T1 logi – 1
  • Raven battleship – 1
  • Crucifier ECM frigate – 1
  • Gnosis battlecruiser – 1
  • Bifrost command destroyer – 1
  • Hurricane battle cruiser – 1
  • Sigil entosis industrial – 1
  • Mobile Small Warp Disruptor I – 1

Other Items

CCP announced some graphic updates that are available on the test server that are supposed to make space bright and more colorful.  I’ve been around long enough to remember the graphic updates that were aimed at making some areas of space darker and less colorful.

Then there is the PCU.  I have been tracking the top weekly player count during the war, which usually occurs on Sunday. (I note when it is a different day.)  The decline in  the PCU has been noted by many and seems to be something of a perfect storm of conditions.  First, there is the coming of summer, which people always say heralds a decline, except when it doesn’t.   Then there is the end of pandemic restrictions many places, which has led to a surge of people eager go somewhere, anywhere, the hell away from home.  My wife noticed over the last week or so that luggage sections at various stores were almost completely shopped out.

Need a bag? Not going to find one here!

The war is not helping.  Stalemate and stagnation hasn’t given people a reason to log in. CCP’s economic starvation plan is piled on top of that.  It has made things more expensive so far, and capitals almost irreplaceable for some, so people are becoming more risk adverse.

And then there is the outrage at the pop-up ad that CCP has introduced to the game to encourage people to buy PLEX has encouraged a pile of people to say they are quitting.

Use your credit card to finance your revenge!

Add in a holiday week… yesterday was US Independence day… and this past week had the lowest weekly peak concurrent user count of the war so far.  The Blackout was a big worry back in the day because daily PCUs were down around 25K.  That is up from where we are now most days of the week.  The question is, when will this bottom out and begin to recover?

  • Day 1 – 38,838
  • Week 1 – 37,034
  • Week 2 – 34,799
  • Week 3 – 34,692
  • Week 4 – 35,583
  • Week 5 – 35,479
  • Week 6 – 34,974
  • Week 7 – 38,299
  • Week 8 – 35,650
  • Week 9 – 35,075
  • Week 10 – 35,812
  • Week 11 – 35,165
  • Week 12 – 36,671
  • Week 13 – 35,618
  • Week 14 – 39,681
  • Week 15 – 40,359
  • Week 16 – 36,642
  • Week 17 – 37,695
  • Week 18 – 36,632
  • Week 19 – 35,816 (Saturday)
  • Week 20 – 37,628 (Saturday)
  • Week 21 – 34,888
  • Week 22 – 33,264
  • Week 23 – 33,149
  • Week 24 – 32,807 (Saturday)
  • Week 25 – 31,611
  • Week 26 – 39,667 (Saturday)
  • Week 27 – 34,989 (Saturday)
  • Week 28 – 34,713
  • Week 29 – 35,996
  • Week 30 – 38,323
  • Week 31 – 38,167
  • Week 32 – 37,259
  • Week 33 – 35,886 (Saturday)
  • Week 34 – 35,626
  • Week 35 – 35,379
  • Week 36 – 35,085
  • Week 37 – 34,394
  • Week 38 – 36,319
  • Week 39 – 35,597 (Saturday)
  • Week 40 – 35,384 (Saturday)
  • Week 41 – 33,708
  • Week 42 – 33,521
  • Week 43 – 33,731
  • Week 44 – 33,742 (Saturday)
  • Week 45 – 33,758
  • Week 46 – 31,768
  • Week 47 – 29,898
  • Week 48 – 31,462 (Monday)
  • Week 49 – 27,914
  • Week 50 – 26,045
  • Week 51 – 25,661
  • Week 52 – 24,262

Related

49 Weeks of World War Bee

As things remain stagnant on the Delve front even the narrative wars have started to sag, falling back on a few key points.

With the Siege of 1DQ six weeks in, the Imperium narrative has been bolstered by PAPI’s lack of progress against “Fortress Delve,” which turned out to be just the O-EIMK constellation.

Some Cyro Huren propaganda on that topic

PAPI has been pushing a line that the Imperium is “contained” and “no longer a threat” while the Imperium points to kill mails both in and out of Delve as a counter.  But both sides are stuck with the stalemate.  If PAPI breaks up, the Imperium immediately starts attacking in Delve.  But if PAPI stays together, there isn’t a lot of action to keep line members interested.  There is barely even any drama, just each side trying to egg the other on into attacking for the “good of the game.”

Basically, the Imperium has nowhere else to go and PAPI, or Legacy at least, knows there is no negotiated peace to be had that will end the war cleanly.  So the war goes on.

Okay, there was one bit of drama.  The corporation Imperial Federation left TEST to join Goonswarm and the Imperium.  Not the first time a corp or alliance has decided to join the allegedly losing side.  That brought 400 players into the Imperium ranks.  However, the CEO apparently did this without consulting their membership and a majority of those members voted with their feet, returning to other organizations within Legacy coalition.

Imperial Federation and the downward slope

Meanwhile, the rumor is that Vily has been backing off the well publicized “extermination” plan as a war goal, as he has every time PAPI has stumbled.  He even allowed that The Mittani might be tolerated in the game.  But extermination is always back on the table as soon as PAPI makes any progress, so this is just posturing unless he has a concrete proposal.

Delve Front

This map of the front lines in Delve remains as accurate as it was back at the end of Week 43 when I first posted it.

O-EIMK Constellation – June 13, 2021

After dropping and losing 27 Azbels in attempts to gain a foothold in the O-EIMK constellation in several time zones, PAPI has given up on that tactic.  At the June 6th town hall Progodlegend promised the Legacy line members that there was a new strategy coming, but it failed to materialize mid-week as promised.

There was a bit of mid week excitement as the Imperium reinforced a few ihubs in the F-I56R constellation in Delve, but there was no follow up.  The Imperium has done that again since, but they are more of an annoyance to provoke PAPI than any serious attempt to retake systems.

The campaign stats for the region show there was actually a slight uptick in destruction over week 48.

Delve Campaign – Week 49

Other Theaters

In Esoteria The Bastion and its allies held on to their remaining territory.

Esoteria – June 13, 2021

Deeper in the region TEST appears to be handing ihubs over to Evictus (IOU).

In Feythabolis the FI.RE coalition has gotten the upper hand over ICG and has mostly evicted them from the region, while Red Alliance and The Bastion now find their holdings under attack.

Feythabolis – June 13, 2021

Then, off in the dronelands, The Initiative has gone back to harassing PandaFam in Etherium Reach and The Kalevala Expanse, reinforcing ihubs now and again, but otherwise not doing anything that would make me feel like I have to throw another map into this post.

My Participation

I did not go on any operations that resulted in combat.  I did get out my Ninazu and joined a couple of stand-to operations.

Taking my Ninazu through the Ansiblex

That involved carriers putting fighters on the gate in 3-DMQT because the enemy was forming up.  We were ready to welcome them to our space.

Fighters streaming to the gate in UI only view mode

Faxes were just there for support in case a real fight broke out, but that did not seem likely.

As such, my losses for the war remained:

  • Ares interceptor – 18
  • Malediction interceptor – 7
  • Drake battle cruiser – 7
  • Crusader interceptor – 5
  • Atron entosis frigate – 6
  • Rokh battleship – 5
  • Scimitar T2 logi – 5
  • Ferox battle cruiser – 4
  • Cormorant destroyer – 4
  • Jackdaw destroyer – 4
  • Purifier stealth bomber – 3
  • Guardian T2 logi – 2
  • Scalpel T2 logi frigate – 2
  • Scythe T1 logi – 1
  • Raven battleship – 1
  • Crucifier ECM frigate – 1
  • Gnosis battlecruiser – 1
  • Bifrost command destroyer – 1
  • Hurricane battle cruiser – 1
  • Sigil entosis industrial – 1
  • Mobile Small Warp Disruptor I – 1

Other Items

The CSM16 elections kicked off on Tuesday.  There are still a few hours left to vote as of this post going live if you have not done so already.  Polls close on June 15th at 11:00 UTC.

CCP also pushed out the patch on Tuesday that introduced mobile observatories, the counter to cloaky camping.  The patch also brought four new gates to New Eden, including the long asked for gate from low sec to the Stain region.  And CCP also fixed the annoying message in the middle of your screen when you put your client in UI only mode, making the screen shot above with all the fighter brackets possible.

CCP also pushed some proposed black ops battleship changes to the test server.

In addition, as part of E3, CCP has a spot on the PC Gamer Show segment and was listed as a sponsor along with Pearl Abyss, so I thought there might be some big news coming.  Instead, it was just another promo for EVE Academy, which we had heard about weeks ago.  I get that player retention is still a target for CCP, but going to E3 with the news that they’re still trying to explain their 18 year old MMO to new players perhaps wasn’t headline worthy news.  Seriously, where do you think that news ranks?

Blizzard: Here is the Diablo II Resurrected launch date!

Square Enix: We’re remaking every Final Fantasy ever!

CCP: We’re taking another shot at a tutorial of sorts.

I had to dig around to find that VentureBeat coverage, and I think they only got that because CCP was a sponsor.

Also, I expect CCP will follow their usual process and immediately ignore the whole EVE Academy thing until it becomes outdated, then quietly remove it.  I am a cynic, but only because CCP has made me one.

And, speaking of player retention, the PCU was down again this past week, with the numbers never getting past 28K over the last seven days.  Summer must be here, or the war must be really getting dull.  We’re a long way from the weeks that were pushing 40K regularly.

  • Day 1 – 38,838
  • Week 1 – 37,034
  • Week 2 – 34,799
  • Week 3 – 34,692
  • Week 4 – 35,583
  • Week 5 – 35,479
  • Week 6 – 34,974
  • Week 7 – 38,299
  • Week 8 – 35,650
  • Week 9 – 35,075
  • Week 10 – 35,812
  • Week 11 – 35,165
  • Week 12 – 36,671
  • Week 13 – 35,618
  • Week 14 – 39,681
  • Week 15 – 40,359
  • Week 16 – 36,642
  • Week 17 – 37,695
  • Week 18 – 36,632
  • Week 19 – 35,816 (Saturday)
  • Week 20 – 37,628 (Saturday)
  • Week 21 – 34,888
  • Week 22 – 33,264
  • Week 23 – 33,149
  • Week 24 – 32,807 (Saturday)
  • Week 25 – 31,611
  • Week 26 – 39,667 (Saturday)
  • Week 27 – 34,989 (Saturday)
  • Week 28 – 34,713
  • Week 29 – 35,996
  • Week 30 – 38,323
  • Week 31 – 38,167
  • Week 32 – 37,259
  • Week 33 – 35,886 (Saturday)
  • Week 34 – 35,626
  • Week 35 – 35,379
  • Week 36 – 35,085
  • Week 37 – 34,394
  • Week 38 – 36,319
  • Week 39 – 35,597 (Saturday)
  • Week 40 – 35,384 (Saturday)
  • Week 41 – 33,708
  • Week 42 – 33,521
  • Week 43 – 33,731
  • Week 44 – 33,742 (Saturday)
  • Week 45 – 33,758
  • Week 46 – 31,768
  • Week 47 – 29,898
  • Week 48 – 31,462 (Monday)
  • Week 49 – 27,914

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PAPI Battleship Failure in 3-DMQT

The pattern of operations has hit something of a predictable routine.  With the vulnerability windows of the O-EIMK constellation set to USTZ and the ADMs at or close to maximum, both sides start to ping for people around 00:00 UTC and, if a battle is going to happen, it happens in the next couple of hours.  There has been, for several nights running, an Azbel coming out of deployment to fight over, and last night was no exception.

Yesterday PAPI did a surprise change and formed up in China/AU time to drop another pair of Azbesl, one with a name about the “3-D invasion starts now” but trading about even with our defense even though they had almost double the numbers according to the battle report.

As a follow up they came back again last night to defend and older Azbel that was set to try and anchor.  The ping for an Eagle fleet went up first at our end and I once again joined in an Eagle and a Scythe logi on my alt.  We got into 3-DMQT and, as PAPI assembled, got ourselves positioned around the gate.  A second fleet of Munnins was called up, and carriers were arrayed on the Fortizar near the gate, their fighters off a ways from us.

Then the word came that PAPI was undocking.  Abaddons would be coming our way, a new doctrine for them, along with Munnins of their own, as well as Harpies, their doctrine for taking our our carrier fighters.

We sat on the gate and waited, then there was a gate flash and local started rising and it was clear they were coming through.  Some unfortunate Abaddon pilot decloaked from the gate jump early and was promptly devoured by our Eagles.

Then they started all decloaking and things settled into a brawl on the gate, with the Eagles shooting Abaddons and their logi while PAPI focused largely on our own logi.  I have few decent screen shots from the fight because I had turned down my graphic settings and, with that change, the mass of bubbles around the gate became largely opaque.  I mostly stayed zoomed out to avoid the bright screen white-out of being in the bubbles.

My view of most of the battle

We lost a lot of our logi, though the Eagles run with cheap T1 cruiser logi, so they were easily replaced.  My own Scythe managed to survive largely because I got focused on my Eagle and keeping an Abaddon scrammed, so when our logi anchor went down my alt flew off in a straight line away from the fight.

There he got ECM’d by a couple of PAPI Kitsunes, which meant he couldn’t lock up and rep anybody anyway.  But, with the ECM nerf from a couple of years back you can always lock the ship hitting you with ECM, so I dropped the combat drones I had brought along and put them on one Kitsune, then another.  Somebody else came along and finished them off, but my alt got on both the kill mails.  His fighters, left on their own, also found a PAPI Eagle to attack later on.

In the brawl I managed to avoid being the primary and kept on locking and firing.  Then the word came that things were going so badly for PAPI that they were attempting to de-aggress and get back through the gate, the fight never having really moved off to the Azbel, the ostensible reason for the fight.

With that word coming down, the focus at our end was to blow as many ships up as we could before we they got away.  HAW dreads were jumped into the melee on the gate, adding to the faxes we already had with us for support.

Final frenzy at the gate

And then the last few targets were gone and we had the field to ourselves.  The battle report showed that their plan with the Abaddons did not turn out the way that they had hoped.

As we waited for the vulnerability timers to run down for the system, the point at which operations generally each evening, we helped the faxes and dreads out of the gate bubbles by bumping them to speed them up.

Things went very much our way.

Battle Report Header

150 billion ISK isn’t a very large battle for this war, though at any other time it might have been noteworthy.

According to the details at the EVE Fleet Manager battle report, PAPI lost 98 of the 119 battleships that were engaged, all of which are more expensive to manufacture now due to the industry changes, along with 307 assault frigates, their anti-fighter Harpy fleet, and a good 30 heavy assault cruisers and 42 logi.  My killboard has three expensive Bhaalgorns on the list of hostiles I hit.

Our biggest loss was 70 heavy assault cruisers, largely from the Eagle fleet I was in, and 57 light fighters.  Oddly, none of the anchored bubbles on the gate died.

And so another day defending our last constellation passes by with us winning the objective, killing the Azbel and keeping PAPI from any other mischief, as well as with us winning the ISK war.  A good day for us.

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