Tag Archives: G-M4GK

Fifteen Weeks of World War Bee

World War Bee has truly picked up over the last couple of weeks as the previous slow pace of things turned into a crescendo of destruction which has seen trillions of ISK in ships and structures destroyed.  As I wrote previously, the October MER is going to be interesting.

CCP has thrown their own monkey wrench into the machinery with war, as the update last Tuesday made deploying citadels more expensive and complicated as well as nerfing mining in a big way.  Expect prices to rise on everything if the war keeps up its burn rate and the null sec alliances have to secure supplies.

But we did get the UI-only option for the client, which made the big fights more manageable for people running multiple clients.  It isn’t a huge change, but it makes things incrementally better.

Delve Front

It was a rough week for the Imperium.  There were three large scale clashes in NPC Delve, two of which went badly and one was something of a Pyrrhic victory.

The losses… the failed trap at YZ9-F6 and the bubble wrapped Keepstar… tipped against the Imperium more due to server performance than any implementation of strategy or tactics by the enemy.  The first, executed with precision, failed when damage didn’t apply while the latter saw PAPI fill up the Keepstar grid with 149 warp disruption bubbles… a number deliberately chosen because CCP is alleged to view 150+ anchorables as an issue that they will step in and correct by removing them… along with a continuous stream of dictor bubbles in order to make any fight on the grid untenable.

So many bubbles on grid

So PAPI won both.  They got to kill 2.5 trillion ISK in ships, including 16 titans and 27 supers and they got their Keepstar in NPC Delve on the fifth try, and nothing can change that.  A bunch of people in the Imperium are angry about these two events, but experience says that is the way the game goes and you have to be prepared to deal with it or stop playing.  CCP isn’t going to step in and make things better, so we just have to carry on.

Meanwhile the big win, the destruction of the fourth Keepstar, cost the coalition more than 1.2 trillion ISK, including 2,000 battleships lost.

On the upside, while the invaders have managed to get their Keepstar in the region and knock out several Fortizars in NPC Delve and SVM-3K, they have yet to be able to turn any of the ihubs in the region, something they have made a prerequisite for any offensive action so far in the war.

Delve ihubs – Oct 19, 2020 with the PAPI Keepstar system highlighted

If I had to guess, once PAPI gets done with their inevitable move op to the new staging, there will be a push on ihubs in Delve systems near the NPC space and Querious as well as possibly in “fake” Querious, the section of the region that is an enclave within Delve and which remains in Imperium control.

Other Locations

There was a running joke that when we lost a fight we would go hit things in G-M4GK and when TEST lost they would hit TCAG-3.  While the Period Basis region had been mostly quiet since the invaders moved into Querious, as the fourth Keepstar battle raged TEST managed to use the time to with the entosis match for TCAG-3, taking the ihub there as well as in RJ3H-0 further into the region.

The Period Basis / Paragon Soul front

They have since lost the RJ3H-0 ihub and we will see if they contest the TCAG-3 ihub when the Imperium pushes back on that.

Last week I reported that Bastion had captured several TEST systems in Esoteria, which I expected TEST would take back shortly.  Busy in Delve… and Period Basis… TEST has yet to clean up that incursion.

Bastion systems in Esoteria

Furthermore, during the fighting in NPC Delve, Bastion managed to anchor a Fortizar in one of the systems, giving them a base of operations that allows them to continue being a thorn in TEST’s side.  Not something that will win the war, but a distraction none the less.

My Participation

I somehow found the time to get stuck in on the three big fights last week, which meant I spent a lot of hours in New Eden in slow motion.  I also lost some more ships during the fourth Keepstar fight, five Crusaders and a Raven.  I managed to get home safe with my original ships from the other two.

That makes my loss count for the war:

  • Ares interceptor – 11
  • Crusader interceptor – 5
  • Rokh battleship – 5
  • Atron entosis frigate – 5
  • Ferox battle cruiser – 3
  • Drake entosis battle cruiser – 3
  • Purifier stealth bomber – 2
  • Guardian logi – 2
  • Malediction interceptor – 2
  • Scalpel logi frigate – 2
  • Raven battleship – 1
  • Crucifier ECM frigate – 1
  • Gnosis ratting battlecruiser – 1
  • Scimitar logi – 1
  • Bifrost entosis command destroyer – 1
  • Cormorant destroyer – 1
  • Hurricane battle cruiser – 1
  • Sigil entosis industrial – 1

Other Items

CCP put out a trailer regarding their fourth quarter plan, the Phoenix Quadrant.

The sound track syncs well with the feelings within the Imperium.

But the post that went with the trailer says that super carriers will be getting an overhaul as part of this quadrant, including giving them clone bays that allow capsuleers to respawn directly to them in battle, putting them in a ship stowed within the carrier.  That will introduce a new element to the war.

Much hay was made of the fact that The Initiative cut their SRP amounts from a 50% to a 25% of cost policy.  This led to a lot speculation about their finances and concern trolling about why Goonswarm isn’t financing them.  I was more surprised that they were only getting 50% as a matter of course before the cut.  In GSF it is close to 100%, and if you’re in KarmaFleet you get bonus SRP for logi ships, so you can end up making money on a ship loss.  So whether or not this policy change by INIT is significant or not remains to be seen.  They have always been a very independent ally and plot their own course.

And then there is the weekly peak concurrent user count.

  • 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

The war finally saw the Sunday prime time PCU pass the 40K mark, something it hasn’t done since back in April when the pandemic was new and everybody was stuck and home and trying to obey the rules and suggestions to help stop the spread.  It probably helped that the bubble wrap fight was slated to kick off right before the usual peak time, even if no real battle ensued.

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Nine Weeks of World War Bee

War never changes, or something like that.  This war is now past the two month mark and a few things have changed.

In Delve, the Imperium anchored two more Keepstars in 1DQ1-A.

Keepstars anchoring behind our staging Keepstar

The number of Upwell structures in our staging system was already to a point where they flooded the overview, but now there are two more Keepstars on grid with our main staging Keepstar.  The grid around that area is… crowded.

1DQ1-A staging Keepstar grid

The red circles are the four Keepstars on grid, while the two yellow circles are Sotiyos.  The blue circles are the array of faction Fortizars taken as part of the peace deal from the war two years back.  I don’t think I circled them all as they are hard to pick out in that screen shot, which is also slightly angled off the up-down axis, so doesn’t line up quite right.  But there are a lot of them.  You can see some of them lined up in this screen shot from above the home Keepstar.

Fortizars to the left, right, and below

This grid will end up being a hell of a fight should it come down to it.

Northern Front

After marshaling their titan and super force and driving it all the way around from Catch into Fountain, the invaders destroyed the final Keepstar in the region, the one in Y-2ANO.

Attacking the Keepstar

A few ops were run to help people get things out of the Keepstar before the final timer.  I managed to get a Ferox and a Megathron safely back to 1DQ1-A.  However, an Ibis I left in there is now in asset safety and will be redeemable in Hophib in a couple weeks.  Hah.

That brought the attacker Keepstar kill count up to six.

Keepstar tally so far

After that, the invaders appeared to be done in Fountain.  A few more smaller structures were destroyed, but they didn’t bother to form up for the final timer they had set on a faction Fortizar in Y-2ANO.

Faction Fortizar glows as the timer runs down

Instead they started move ops to move their forces elsewhere, perhaps to threaten Querious or Period Basis… or who knows, maybe they’ll actually come to Delve?

Not getting a fight on that faction Fortizar, Elo Knight dropped out Ferox covering fleet into their staging at I-CUVX where we mauled a move op and reinforced their staging Fortizar while the hostiles sat and watched, not bothering to form up anything to fight us.

Battle Report Header

Not a war winning fight, but a send off from us.  I did not come back for the armor timer, but it did not go well for us.

Southern Front

Querious saw clashes over structures, including the faction Fortizar in ED-L9T, a location well remembered by many in Reavers as the sight of one of our most epic fights a little over five years back.

Sovereignty in the eastern end of the region remains mostly uncontested as a swathe of systems sit with nobody bothering to drop an ihub.  It just isn’t worth the effort to either side.

Querious ihub map – Sep 6, 2020

Meanwhile, the invaders have made no progress on the western reach of the region, when GSF and The Initiative still hold ihubs and TCUs.

The big action in the south took place in the Paragon Soul region, in G-M4GK, when the Imperium spotted some titans in there and threw down to try and take them out.  Subcaps and capitals were through the gate and into a brawl, with supers and titans formed up and ready to follow them in, all late on a week night in USTZ.

In the brawl in G-M4GK

Things did not go our way, the supers and titans did not gate into the fight.  The dreads and faxes that got on grid ended up taking heavy losses, including a Vehement faction dread.

Doomsdays hitting home

The battle report showed losses at a 3:1 ratio against us.

Battle Report header for the G-M4GK brawl

But it was a moment of very high excitement, on both sides I am sure, as it looked like something might break out and become one of those legendary battles.  Once everybody who could be extracted was out, we escorted the titans home and called it a night.

Seeing our titans and supers safely back

My Participation

I managed to get into the G-M4GK fight, where I lost my Guardian as part of Elo Knight’s Ferox fleet, then joined Dictorian Pilot’s fleet in a Sabre to help camp the G-M4GK in TCAG-3, where we caught quite a few hostiles trying to slip in to catch our caps as they pulled out.

I also went out with an interceptor fleet to witness the death of the Y-2ANO Keepstar… and to whore on the kill mail.  I was a bit bummed that I could not stay on grid to see it explode, but the hostiles were looking for anything to shoot.

My damaged comic fit Ares

I had a snowball launcher and a fireworks launcher, along with a civilian weapon off an Ibis, so you know I was serious.

I managed to get off grid to repair on one of our Fortizars when a hostile Tengu warped in on us at zero.  He was quickly tackled by the the others interceptors sitting with us, who were actual fit with useful things, like webs, scrams, and points.  The Tengu was taken down by the dozen interceptors.

Get the Tengu!

My efforts are visible in that screen shot.  Both fireworks and snowball launcher were in actions… and the gun as well.  I got on the kill mail.  To be fair to the poor Tengu pilot, tidi was pretty bad with over 2,000 people in the system, and he might not have known what hit him until it was too late.  But it was a nice little addition to our day.

So my loss count for the war incremented by one, with the loss of the Guardian.  My total:

  • Ares interceptor – 9
  • Atron entosis frigate – 5
  • Drake entosis battle cruiser – 3
  • Guardian logi – 2
  • Malediction interceptor – 2
  • Scalpel logi frigate – 2
  • Ferox battle cruiser – 2
  • Bifrost entosis command destroyer – 1
  • Cormorant destroyer – 1
  • Purifier stealth bomber – 1
  • Hurricane battle cruiser – 1
  • Sigil entosis industrial – 1

I have two Guardians on the list as I went down my losses and realized I forgot to add one from early August.

Overall

With the invaders moving their forces elsewhere, it seems like the northern front my be done.  The rumor is that PandaFam is going to install some smaller alliances in the region in order to hold it, which I am sure will end well.  But we will have to wait and see if that comes to pass.

The big question is where will the invaders strike next?  Will they focus their forces and attempt to do to Querious what they just finished doing in Fountain?  Will the stage back in Catch in FAT-6P or use one of their 13 Keepstars deployed for their move op to try to approach from the Khanid region?  Or will they force a move into NPC Delve to hurry things along?

I suppose it depends on who is running the show.  TEST and Legacy have seemed lackadaisical in their approach to the war relative to their PandaFam allies, who have really been putting in most of the work.  But, as was pointed out, Legacy is still at home and can rat and mine and do much of their peacetime stuff, while PandaFam is deployed far from home and no doubt feels some pressure from line members to get stuff done.

The Sunday peak concurrent users has dipped back down a bit, reflecting the reduction in action. (Numbers courtesy of EVE Offline)

  • Day 1, Jul 5 – 38,838
  • Week 1, Jul 12 – 37,034
  • Week 2, Jul 19 – 34,799
  • Week 3, Jul 26 – 34,692
  • Week 4, Aug 2 – 35,583
  • Week 5, Aug 9 – 35,479
  • Week 6, Aug 16 – 34,974
  • Week 7, Aug 23 – 38,299
  • Week 8, Aug 30 – 35,650
  • Week 9, Sep 6  – 35,075

And then there is the Quantum Cores patch, the subject of my post tomorrow, which will change some of the way Upwell structures are handled.  That may have some impact on the war come October.  But we’ll get to that and we see what week ten has for us.

Addendum: