Tag Archives: Jay Amazingness

Getting Home from Oasa

The ping said that if we got in Cainun’s fleet fast, there was a chance of a big kill.  The call was for the armor T3 cruiser fleet doctrine, which features the Legion and Proteus strategic cruisers along with armor logi and support.  I happened to be at my desk at just the right moment to log in, get in fleet, get into my Oneiros and undock as we warped off to a titan to get bridged on our way.

Off we go, are we committed yet?

The bridge off the titan sent us to another system where a wormhole to Thera awaited us.  We formed up on the null sec side of the wormhole, waiting for the orders to go through.  The wormhole was not fresh and there was concern about how much mass we would be pushing through it.

To this end we were asked to go to our fitting window and offline the armor plates on our ships to reduce the mass going through the whole, though I admit that I did wonder how you can turn off something like an armor plate.  Armor isn’t like a shield, it doesn’t go away when you turn off the switch.  But I followed New Eden logic and set mine offline.

Lolling about at the first wormhole

Tackle was sent through first, and they zipped off to the exit whole in Thera, through, and off to catch up our intended target.  Then the call was for command ships and logi to go through the hole and into Thera.  After we were in successfully, the DPS ships were called to jump through.  That was enough to collapse the hole, though only about a dozen ships got left on the other side.  No wormhole adventure for them and they got to head home.  That still left over 200 ships in the fleet.

Once we were warped to the out hole in Thera, we followed the same routine.  Tackle had already gone through, so the call was for command ships and logi, with yet another follow up reminder to turn off armor plates in case somebody hadn’t done it when asked the previous dozen times.  Command ships and logi went through successfully, so the call went for DPS ships to make the transition.  About six DPS ships made it through before the hole collapsed.

That left us in something of an awkward position.  A small fleet consisting mostly of logi was now in 1-HDQ4 in the Oasa region, a long way from home, while more than 150 T3 cruisers were hanging about in Thera where the direct hole home had already closed and the hole to the target was no longer available to them either.  Those left in Thera docked up at one of the stations there.

Those of us stranded up in Oasa were told to start burning to KED-2O where an Imperium Caracal fleet, which had used the same holes before us, was already engaged.  They had killed a Rorqual up there and had a titan tackled.  So off we went with Thomas Lear now leading us.  Why not?  We were already there and didn’t have anyplace else to be.  But even as we closed in on the destination system, word came down the line that a titan kill wasn’t going to happen.  The defenders had been successful at blowing up any tackle and the big ship got away.

So there we were, up in Oasa, a long way from home, 33 ships made up of boosts, lots of logi, and a few DPS ships.  We were like the incarnation of old school WoW paladins in New Eden; we weren’t going to die, but neither was anything we rolled up on.  It was time to figure out how to get back to Delve.

As it turned out, there was another Thera wormhole about 20 jumps from our current location, over in The Vale of the Silent in 9-GBPD.  We just had to get there.  Getting there though, turned out to be a bit of a chore.  Going gate to gate for 20 jumps takes some time, but that got multiplied as we went through Russian space in Perrigen Falls.  The Russians have a habit of covering gates around their space with anchorable warp disruption bubbles.  Lots of them.

The gate inside the bubbles

So for a series of gates we ended up landing 60-90km off of a gate, slow boating with after burners lit to jump through, then slow boating on after burners out of the inevitable bubbles on the other side of the gate.

Out of the bubbles on the far side for another warp

The bubbles were all around the gates, so there was no sending somebody ahead for a perch around them, and we didn’t have enough DPS to blow them up as we went. (Though I think we did destroy a single small bubble as we motored to a gate, just out of boredom and anger more than anything else… launch logi whore drones!)

The bubbles probably didn’t cost us all that much extra time, but subjectively, having to motor on ABs felt like a long time.   Ironically, tomorrow’s patch is making a change to anchorable bubbles so that they decay and go away after a given amount of time, so this might be the last time we have to drag ourselves through a series of forever bubbles.  And if our trip felt like a long time to us, I am sure the rest of the fleet wasn’t happy about it either.

While we had been gating about the northeast of New Eden, the rest of the fleet had been hanging out in Thera just waiting for us to get back.  Jay, who was with us, started trying to get them to rise up against Cainun to get him to take them home rather than waiting for us.  I have to admit, keeping more than 160 people hanging about waiting for 30 or so of us had a lot going against it.  On the other hand, our detachment was made up of the boosters and logi pilots.  Everybody tells us we’re special… everybody who just wants to fly DPS and get kill mails… so I guess it was time for them to show us just how special we were.

We made it past the bubbles gates and finally arrived in 9-GBPD where B33R was sitting on the wormhole as a warp in.  We went through and found Cainun and the rest of the fleet sitting there waiting for us.

Back with the fleet in Thera… also, the only good Oneiros SKIN

Once we were all through and back into Thera, Cainun warped us to the out connection.  There, we had a plate check once again.  Then he called out four Guardians to stay behind before sending people through.  This hole was also questionable, but there was another Thera connection option if this one collapsed.  Cainun just wanted to be sure any fleet that had to take an alternate route had some logi support.

And he was correct, the whole did collapse before we all got through.  I was through and in the system I-ME3L in Stain.  That put us 23 jumps from home on a route through Period Basis, Delve, Fake Querious, and Delve again.

Down in Stain

Fortunately, there was only a single anchorable bubble on the route home, reported by our scout, and it was down before we even got to the system where it was.  We were able to gate home without incident.

All told, that was about a two hour adventure which took some of us on a multi-region tour the length of New Eden.

Our route, Blue for wormhole travel, Red for gate travel

You could certainly find systems more distant from each other than we hit, but Oasa to Period Basis does cover a lot of the breadth of New Eden.  And it also shows how handy wormholes can be and the hazards of them collapsing on you.

Breaking into Delve

Not everybody in the Imperium spent last week wandering casually down to our staging station in Sakht.  Fleets had been active in Delve for several days, focusing on the constellation YX-LYK, and by Saturday we had already taken the system Q-HESZ.

But the first real test of the invasion wasn’t until yesterday, when the ihub, station, and TCU in the system 1-SMEB, previously reinforced, were contested.  1-SMEB was also the capital system for the League of Unaligned Master Pilots (ticker: LUMPY), which gave it a boost to its ADM, making it a tougher nut to crack.

There had been pings in advance asking people to show up and be ready for a fight.  The first ping for a subcap fleet, under Jay Amazingness, went out at 16:30 and it filled up quickly.  It was a Proteus fleet and I got out my Oneiros, which I had just run down from Saranen on Friday, and joined up with the logistics contingent.

Once that fleet filled another went up, and another subcap fleet after that.

We undocked after only a short wait.

Emerging from the Genolution Biotech Production station

Emerging from the Genolution Biotech Production station

We held on the gate to 1-SMEB and waited for a bit.  Then a fourth fleet showed up to pass through the gate.  It was a fleet of capital and supercapital ships, jumping into 1-SMEB for the event.

Once they were through, we jumped into 1-SMEB ourselves, then into 6Q-R50, and then into RCI-VL, where we set up around the MJXW-P gate, which seemed like sort of an odd, dead-endy location.

However, it turned out to be the right place, as the hostiles fell on us there, starting with the Pandemic Legion FC Killah Bee, who landed on grid prematurely and was immediately targeted.  I even managed to get an ECM drone on his, so as to get on the kill mail.  After that though, I let my drone take its own course as there were reps to be applied as the two sides closed and got stuck into each other.  NCDot and PL had a T3 fleet, which formed the bulk of the opposition, while the locals, led by LUMPY, were using Gilas.  On our side there was the Proteus fleet, a Confessor fleet, and Asher’s Cerberus fleet.  Bubbles were up to hold the foe in place.

The fight develops

The fight develops

In the middle of all of that, a cyno went up.  As I watched, a single Wyvern supercarrier landed on grid.

A wild super suddenly appears!

A wild super suddenly appears!

Time dilation was already hitting hard, so the capital fleet jumping in on top of the fight unfolded slowly.  Soon, however, I was in the middle of a lot of big ship.

My Oneiros in the midst of a lot of caps

My Oneiros in the midst of a lot of caps

With the presence of a capital fleet on grid, the fight went from a brawl to trying to knock off as many hostiles as we could before they could get away.  I even got to see one of the new doomsday effects as one of the titans  We even got an official observer when ISD Lunaire Elois showed up in a Polaris Inspector Frigate to watch the supers in action.

Somebody has come to watch us

Somebody has come to watch us

That was towards the end of the fight and, as usual, a couple of pilots lit out after the ISD ship, only to find its performance envelope was well beyond their ability to catch.

Meanwhile, our foes escaped as best they could and that was about it for big fights for the day.  All told, that was about 90 minutes of time from undock to the caps heading back towards 1-SMEB where they formed up on a gate to smart bomb the Pandemic Horde and Mordus Angels frigates and interceptors that were in the area.  The battle report for the fight unsurprisingly shows the ISK war going in our favor, though not that much ISK was expended given the values of the fleets on grid.   However, the totals and participants keep changing when I go back to look at that report, so I am not sure how far to trust it.

July 31, 2016 RCI-VL fight

July 31, 2016 RCI-VL fight

It did seem that the majority of the hostiles were not Delve locals.  They must miss us up north.

With the fun over, the work began.  It was time to play the Fozzie Sov game so, over the next few hours we spent time running entosis link modules over command nodes in order to take ihubs, stations, and TCUs.

A command node in "action"

A command node in “action”

There was a bit of see-saw on a couple of the objectives.  At one point LUMPY was at 95% for the 1-SMEB TCU.  However, they seemed to give up before they got that last 5%… though with us roving through the constellation in force, I guess I can understand why… and the actual command node objectives were left to us.

The only opposition was a gang of interceptors that were dropping on nodes to try and break lock on the nodes to slow things down.  This was aggravated by our decision to use force auxiliaries… fax machines… for entosis work.  If I understand correctly, we did this because they were supposed to be immune from ECM while sieged.  However, this turned out to be only true for directed ECM and not area affect ECM burst.

So we ended up with the worst of both worlds.  Fax pilots had to endure the capital entosis warm up cycle penalty both when they started in on a node AND whenever an ECM burst broke their lock.

Fax machines continued on, but there was also a call for subcap pilots to come out and run entosis links as well.  By that point our fleet was split up by wings and sitting on nodes in a system where no hostiles bothered to show up, so I got out my alt.  He happened to have a Rapier fit for solo entosis work, so I ran him out to our system and put him on whatever nodes were available.

With multiple objectives in play, coordination was… not very well coordinated.  If the goal of Fozzie Sov was to reinforce the officious “spreadsheets in space” aspect of EVE Online, then op success, because this sort of event pretty much requires some master spreadsheet coordinator to run with any efficiency.  Instead we had multiple fleets on multiple coms and people going here and there.  On a couple of nodes I was running a fax machine would show up, having been assigned the node.  I would convo with them and tell them to let me know when they had spun up through their initial cycle, after which I would fly off to another node.

But at least I was out doing something with my alt.  The majority of our fleet was just sitting around watching nodes get wanded.  As I have said before, this is not engaging game play.  You don’t see ISD ships flying out to watch people conquer sov.

Asher, on his latest podcast, had some idea for updating Fozzie Sov to make it more interesting, or at least force more fights.  But it seems like CCP, buoyed by the cheers of people who don’t actually engage in sov warfare and who, in some cases, seem to actively dislike sov null and its residents, will not be revisiting Fozzie Sov for the foreseeable future.

Life in sovereign null sec.  We’re told get too much attention paid to us one day, and then on another day we’re blamed for the PCU drop because we’re not warring hard enough to keep people’s attention.

On the bright side, hours of entosis work… I spent 3 hours on it myself after the initial fight before decided I wanted to do something else for the rest of the day… did get us some ihubs, and TCUs, as well as freeporting a couple stations in Delve.

The result of Sunday's work

The result of Sunday’s work

The Ministry of Truth even put out a song about the fall of LUMPY in Delve.

So the conquest of Delve seems to be off to a good start.  Now we just have to hold what we have taken while doing the Fozzie Sov shuffle in a about a dozen more constellations.

My screen shots from the day collected up into a gallery:

Held Over in Rakapas

i hate rakapas

-Jay Amazingness

I had some hope yesterday about moving onward towards Delve.  I have Jabber on my iPad and could see pings going out about move ops, and specifically ones from Rakapas, where I am currently docked up.

Jay Amazingness was leading ops out of Rakapas and further down the route to Delve while I toiled away.  Of course, it wasn’t as though he lacked prompting on that front.  He posted a sample of the coms traffic:

When are we leaving Rakapas?

guys when is the next rakapasop?

is this the rakapas move op

what is the route from rakapas?

will there be ops in rakapas later on tonight?

any eta on ops scheduled from rakapas?

are we leaving from Rakapas ?

Dread in  Rakapas , any cyno’s up for further down the route?

are we moving to the next location after rakapas?

can we still start now from rakapas ?

Which has reportedly given Jay a new appreciation of the particular star system in New Eden.

Meanwhile, those waiting on the word of Jay to lead us to the promised land had perhaps begun to elevate him in status.  Commandments were written and images created in furtherance of our deliverance.

Destoration's awesome contribution to the cult of Jay

Destoration’s awesome contribution to the cult of Jay

Unfortunately, by the time I got home last night an incursion had spawned a couple jumps down the line towards Delve, and all move ops were suspended until it was defeated.  And I couldn’t even join in on that as I left my doctrine combat ships back in Saranen, as instructed.

So I spent another night in Rakapas.  Not quite the trail of tears… mostly because we haven’t had to do this all in one sitting.

We await our savior, Jay Amazingness.  He will deliver us to Delve.

At least I am not one of those people who only have JDC4 trained.  They are truly in a world of hurt.

Pointed Towards Delve

Almost five years of deployments and move ops have instilled in me a need to get in on any move ops as early as possible.  In my experience, if you are not on a move op and at the destination in the first 48 hours, move ops quickly start to taper off and getting to the destination becomes increasingly problematic.

With that experience in mind I was up on Saturday morning and in the first fleet op I could find.

As I mentioned last week, we had been told that we would be moving out to a new home come the weekend.  That new home is Delve, a surprise to almost nobody.  Delve is where Goons go when they don’t know where they should go.  Of course, the last time we left Delve, during the great consolidation before Fozzie Sov, I was very diligent in extracting every asset from the region.  Another lesson learned; just leave stuff in Delve.  We’ll be back eventually.

Anyway, the destination was clear.  We would be leaving Saranen in Lonetrek for Delve.

The general direction

The general direction

Of course, this could not/would not remain a secret… it was announced on Reddit before we were told officially… and so the path to Delve was festooned with traps and those looking for stragglers and solo travelers for easy kills.  There was apparently a very successful batch of smart bombing battleships sitting on a gate in Aridia that knocked off a stream of Imperium pilots making the run south in interceptors.

Thus, being in a move op convoy was all the more important.  So I jumped into Asher’s subcap fleet that was forming up.  We undocked after a bit and headed out to a titan for a bridge.  We were on our way.

Approaching the titan

Approaching the titan

Except, of course, we were not on our way.  Subcap move ops to Delve had not yet… and as of this writing have not yet… begun.  We were formed up to cover the movement of supercaps as they started their way down south, a necessary if tedious duty.  I spent more than three hours in the fleet and the biggest event was when NCDot nearly caught a Leviathan off of a citadel.

We were rushed off the moment that seemed to be a possibility, but by the time we arrived the Leviathan was safely off and NCDot’s Macheariel strike force was sitting about getting hit by the citadel’s gunner.

Another bomb lands on an Apostle

Another bomb lands on an Apostle

As the morning wore on into afternoon, I had other things to do and dropped out of the fleet in a station a few jumps from Saranen.  However, given how well camped the area around Saranen has been, that ship is now effectively out of range of Saranen unless I can find a fleet to swing by and pick me up.

Later in the day things were still going on, but I remained stranded so eventually decided to clone jump back to Saranen.  Since move ops seemed to be picking up for capitals, I thought I might pack up my carrier and see if I could that moved down south.  That would be one major anxiety off my list.

I was able to stuff almost all of my remaining ships into it, leaving behind only a couple of combat ships for our current doctrines.  Those I figured could wait for subcap convoys and would remain available for any further cover operations we might have to run.  I also bought quite a bit of fuel for the run, just to be safe.  My carrier, packed up, was ready to move.

Hey, we have a video ad now too

Hey, we have a video ad now too

Sunday morning I was up in time to get into a capital move op led by Jay Amazingness.  The pace for that was… slow.  We had to wait for some people to jump their capitals into Saranen, and then wait for their jump fatigue to fully subside before we were able to undock and make our first jump.  But the time finally came and we were told to undock and jump to the cyno that had been lit for us.

It was at that point I had a problem.

I had never been in a fleet with other capital ships before.  I have had the carrier for almost three years now, and have jumped it to various locations in the past, but that was always in a two person fleet.  So I have always just right-clicked on my alt in the fleet window and selected “Jump To” from there.  But now I was in a fleet over 150 players strong and had no idea who had actually lit the cyno.

So I had to speak up on voice coms to ask how to jump to the cyno the fleet was going to, and immediately became “that guy” in fleet once again.  Jay, after asking a couple of questions to determine I was in the right ship in the correct location, told me to right-click on my capacitor and select “Jump To” from there.  With that bit of information, I jumped successfully to the first waypoint.  Jay was quick and efficient in his response, leaving the mockery for after.  Even a few hours later he was complaining about the sort of people who were in his fleet, citing the fact that he had a guy who didn’t even know how to jump to a cyno.

We jumped, docked up, and then we waited.  As it turned out, we were going to sit and wait for everybody’s jump fatigue, the blue timer, to run down after each jump.  That wasn’t made clear, at least not to me, for the first two jumps.  So the first time around I sat there patiently at my desk for the 54 minute timer and then while longer as people got back together and we were cleared for the next jump.

Making the next jump

Making the next jump

The second time around I asked if we were going to wait down the timer again, but got no response as I think Jay had already wandered off for the timer.  I didn’t sit there the whole time, but I kept an eye on things, lest I get left behind.  By the third jump I was fully aware of the process.  However, we hit a point where the move op was halted, just over a dozen gates from Saranen.  We were going to hold there while other move ops got people up to that point.  After that, further ops would move forward from our current location.

That left me committed to moving the carrier, with my jump clone timer still many hours from letting me shift again.  As the day moved on, more pings went out for fleets and move ops, but nothing from my location.  Then, during the evening, after a couple of pings for caps to form up in Saranen, I saw a ping in the evening that announced that caps from my location had successfully moved closer to Delve.  I clearly missed an opportunity to move on.

That is where the great move stands for me right now.  I am still in Black Rise, an awkward number of jumps from Delve.  We have gotten the word that these move ops will keep going, so I hope to get end up down south this week.  On the other hand, I don’t want to clone jump away from my carrier, sitting at an early waypoint station, lest I miss the ping that announces a move forward.  So I am sort of stuck where I am.

The Keepstar, a Hellcamp, and Pure Blind

Last Thursday I posted a picture of a Keepstar citadel deploying in EVE Online, strongly implying that there was going to be something happening around that.

Looks like it has about 18 hours to go...

That is a titan’s worth of ISK in structure form…

And now it is Tuesday and I haven’t written any more about it, so I thought it might retrace what happened, or at least my own path through it.

If you are a regular on /r/eve you have likely read the story already and can probably skip this, as it will be a subset of events, mostly what I actually saw and heard.  If you live in New Eden vicariously through my posts, well, here is another tale from deep space.

Thursday night there was a ping for a Cerberus fleet led by Asher Elias.  This is a very Asher doctrine and I try to go on such fleets whenever I can.  They tend to be a good time.  I logged on and got into the fleet.

We had some special instructions.  One was to bring along a medium mobile war disruption bubble if we could deploy it.  The other was to bring along some extra ammo.  I bought a bubble and put it in my cargo along with some cheap t1 missiles, as it sounded like we might be shooting structures.  Then we undocked.  We had decent numbers, with over 200 in fleet, so there was a mass of Cerbs.

Cerberus undock

Cerberus undock

From there in Saranen we headed out a few jumps to catch a titan bridge into Pure Blind.  From there we headed through Fade and into Deklein, with our destination being the system 2O9G-D.

It was there that we saw, on the grid with the station, the Keepstar going up.  It was still early in its 24 hour deployment cycle, so I figured we were there to lay some groundwork in order to contest it once it came out of its deployment and spent an hour going online, during which it could not defend itself.

And that seemed to be our task.  First we went and dropped our bubbles around the station in order to making coming and going from there in anything besides an interceptor a chore.

2O9G station bubbled up

2O9G station bubbled up

We went and hit the POS in the system that had a cyno beacon and a jump bridge module in order to hinder comings and goings.  We also covered the deployment of a pair of POS towers and spent some time popping hostile warp bubbles around an Astrahus in I30-3A, which is the system next door.

Not much happened while we did this in the way of fights.  We killed a couple of bombers who tried to hit us, some interceptors that we buzzing around, and a couple of fighters sent out from a carrier.

During this The Mittani got on coms with us to tell us about the grand plan.  He said that we were not there merely to shoot the Keepstar, but to hellcamp the station through the 96 hour period it would take to turn the ownership over to us, thus locking down all the assets held therein by the locals.  We would also be there for the Keepstar fight, but the hellcamp was the thing.

A hellcamp is when you bubble up a null sec station and put a fleet on it to halt all but the most minimal comings and goings… you can’t really stop interceptors… for an extended period of time.  In this case, we The Mittani was talking about embargoing the station for 96 hours straight.  Not the longest hellcamp in my time… I think we spent at least a week camping a station in 319-3D in Delve back in 2012… but still a call for a commitment.

To do this Asher was going to take us back to Saranen and swap out for a Confessor fleet.  Those of us who didn’t want to stay up for the hellcamp… there were late night Euros in the fleet as well as early risers like me… we could safe log out in the POS and log back in the next day for the big fight and whatever else came up.

There was also the promise of a State of the Goonion announcement come the morning.

It wasn’t really that late, but I didn’t want to fly to Saranen and back out again, so I decided to call it a night and camp in the POS.  I was already planning to work from home on Friday and I figured if I camped in the POS I could log in to see a bit of the big fight… it was slated for about noon my time, so perfect for a lunch break diversion… and then figure things out from there.  So I left.

I do not know what happened with the hellcamp plan overnight, but when I finally got around to logging in the next day before lunch, 2O9G was starting to fill up.  There were already over 1,400 people in local.  Unfortunately for us, only about 20 of them were blue, and most were orbiting the stick in the now reinforced POS that had been setup the previous night.

As local climbed to 2,000 and time dilation started to kick in even without anybody fighting, the word came down through Jabber that there was not going to be a fight as there was no way we could kill the Keepstar in time.

Apparently, when time dilation kicks in and slows everybody down, one of the things that is unaffected is the timer to online a citadel.  Somebody had calculated that even without hostile interference, so long as tidi was running, we could not put enough sustained DPS on the Keepstar to keep it vulnerable and kill it before its unaffected timer ran down and it went online.

And, of course, hostile interference was going to be a big deal.  With about 2,000 people on grid with the Keepstar, including supers, we would be going in outnumbered, so that even without the tidi hitch the Keepstar seemed safe.

The calculations by the heads of the Imperium seemed to include an assumption that the MBC wouldn’t form back up as a single unit again to defend a single citadel, or even that PL might join in to get on a Keepstar kill.  They seem happy enough to shoot MBC capitals of late.

Instead, once again, the MBC showed itself to be the CFC 2.0, a massive essentially blue coalition holding the north together.  Protest all you like, but actions speak louder than words.  Even PL was able to get in on the act thanks to a suspiciously convenient wormhole connection opening up between Thera and 2O9G before the fight.

But no fight was coming.  Some people who were keen to stream the event… including TMC… clearly felt led astray.

Instead, the Imperium undocked a couple of battleship fleets to shoot structured in Pure Blind.  Those of us per-positioned in 2O9G were feeling a little lost.  I safe logged again and went back to work.

Fortunately for me, that evening Thomas Lear came out with a fleet to rescue some of us that were stuck in 2O9G.  He got us back to a titan that bridged us close to Saranen.

Another titan bridge

Another titan bridge

Finally, on Saturday, during the usual Meta Show time frame, there was the previously promised State of the Goonion.  There is a summary of it over at TMC, but the essence was that the plan didn’t work and we were going to pursue a more modest/methodical approach to the long promised reconquista.  We would be pushing into Pure Blind from Saranen, taking systems in the first two constellations, the one based around 93PI-4 and the one next to it, referred to as “the kite” due to its shape on the DOTLAN map, defending the timers and raising ADMs on the systems to make them more defensible.

There was also some announcements about doctrines that would be used going forward.  We had quite a few doctrines live up until this point.  Reducing that will make supply easier, though now I am stuck with two Naga battlecruisers I never got to fly.  I will either ship them back to Jita myself or go do a long range camp on a gate or something with them until they die.

Caps to be used going forward were discussed, and since only the Caldari and Amarr force auxiliaries are going to be used/reimbursed going forward, a few people undocked their insured Ninazu’s for us to shoot.  I got one one kill mail just to be there.

Then it was off to raising ADMs, which means raising the Military and Industrial indexes, which in turn means killing rats and mining.  So after the SotG I joined up with Jay Amazingness’ mining op and broke rocks in 93PI-4 in a Procurer.

Rock crushing in a Procurer

Rock crushing in a Procurer

And that is the plan for now.  We have secured the constellations in Pure Blind.

Pure Blind - July 11, 2016

Pure Blind – July 11, 2016

Now we have to see if we can hold them, raise the ADMs, and push forward.  Deklein is always the goal on the horizon, the Goon homeland for many years.

Gevlon says it won’t work.  And certainly, if the MBC continues to work together and applies itself again to sov warfare, we are likely to be pushed back to the soda warehouse in Saranen.  We shall see how this turns out, this next stage in the war for us.

I am kind of disappointed that I didn’t get to see the Keepstar after it was deployed.  I might have to sneak out to take a look at some point.

Meanwhile, some screen shots from the events of the last few days put together into a gallery.

Titans and Jams on Saturday

Saturday after the Meta Show, which featured Stunt Flores talking about his pay for performance SRP plan, a ping went out for Hurricanes under Jay Amazingness to clear the undock.  My theory is that EN24 is going to keep running stories about Saranen being “hellcamped” until it is actually true, because if 100 Hurricanes can brush off the camp, then it is not yet set to “hell” in my opinion.

We cleared things away but, it being a Saturday afternoon in prime time for EVE, the MBC wasn’t going to let that stand.  The first round of fighting was between us and a fleet of Circle of Two Omen Navy Issues.  This went better for CO2 than last time… no GigX kill mail for us… but we did strip off a chunk of their logi after which they stuck near the Abaddon fleet that showed up to counter our Hurricanes.

Abaddons show up to counter us

Abaddons show up to counter by the station

The arrival of the Abaddons and their Fax Machine support led to some jockeying for optimal position as we exchanged blows with the Abaddons, trading kills.  However, the Abaddons just kept coming, even as we were warping about the station grid the Pandemic Legion Fortizar kept spewing out more and more Abaddons to join the fight.

Abaddons leaving the citadel

Abaddons leaving the citadel

Pandemic Horde, absent from Saranen of late, also showed up in interceptors.  However, by that point DBRB had already undocked a Harpy fleet into the fray and, but the looks of the battle report, most of the interceptors were sent home the fast way.

PL and NCDot also logged in several titans and put them out on the station grid, either as bait or just to show that they could.  However, if they were supposed to be bait, we were not biting.  Jay warped us into range of the titans and had us take a quick shot at them, just because, and then had us align out and warped us off just as a pile of Abaddons were arriving on grid.  Those who didn’t align properly had a good chance of dying.  (There is a video of the goings on in the system, and you can see that particular moment at about the 5 minute mark.)

By that point the weight in numbers was heavily enough against us that we tethered up at one of our citadels and spent some time playing, “we’re watching you watching us watching you.”  We were not going to feed them any more kills, but so long as we stayed there on grid and tethered up, we were a fleet in being.  I had DBRB’s stream on in the background and I could still hear him leading his fleet around, landing to take a quick shot or two then warping off.

Eventually Jay docked us up so that those who wanted to go do something else could get out of fleet.  Another fleet formed up and took over the vigil, however the fun looked to be over for the moment, so I logged.  Overall we lost the ISK war, with us losing 54% of the 40 billion ISK destroyed over a few hours of shooting, according to the battle report.  We probably pressed home a couple more attacks than we should have, but it was a pretty even exchange overall.

Later that evening I was back at my computer and there was a call for a Harpy fleet under Thomas Lear.  I decided to go along in my new Griffin, a ship type which Asher had been handing out the other day in order to introduce some electronic warfare abilities to our Harpy doctrine.

I even invested in a SKIN for it

I even invested in a SKIN for it

I had fit multi-spectral ECM to jam fighters, but Thomas called for three of the racial ECM jammers, Caldari, Minmatar, and Gallente, to be fit.  ECM isn’t completely new to me… after nearly 10 years of playing EVE Online I have run into ECM a few times… but it was still a role I had never flown before in a fleet.   Each of the four main factions has their own electronic warfare type.  I know, after many years, that the Caldari use gravimetric, which is blue, but I had to look at the module info to figure out that Gallente was magnetometric… which is the green ECM module…  and I associate green with their ships, so a decent visual clue… and that Minmatar was ladar and was red, which is close enough to rust to remind me which was which.

I had gotten that about straight when we undocked (again, the camp in Saranen not set anywhere close to “hell”) and started heading towards Deklein, where we have been operating recently, including the carrier kill I was on late last week.

Along the way I noticed that I was the only Griffin in the fleet, which I figured could be good or bad.  On the good side, I wasn’t going to have to worry about jamming the same person somebody else chose.  On the down side, being the sole ECM frigate seemed likely to make me a priority target.

We moved up through Pure Blind and Fade and into Deklein without incident, aside from a hostile shadowing us along the way.  The enemy would know where we were and what we were bringing, but we carried on.

We ended up settling into the northeast part of Deklein, in the N-U2LX constellation which adjoins to Venal, where we moved around, setting up for a fight.  Eventually trouble found us in the form of a Guardians of the Galaxy coalition fleet and we moved in for the fight.

At this point I had to do something with this ECM stuff I had been flying around with.  I launched my combat drone and then started playing “match the colors,” remembering to not bother jamming the primary.

I saw a few Amarr ships, but I didn’t have the Amarr racial jammer fit, so I put the multispectral jammer on one of those.  There were Jackdaws on field, so I put the blue gravimetric on one of them.  Then I saw that their logi was made up of Kirin tech II logi frigates, so I swapped it over to one of those instead.  I put the green magnetometric jammer on an Ares that was close by.  That left me with the red ladar jammer, which I put on a Bifrost that happened to be the first Minmatar ship on my overview.

All jammers were now running on whoever I happened to pick… the FC didn’t call for anybody specific to jam, so my choices were pretty haphazard… so I focused a bit on my combat drone, sending it after targets to try and whore on a few kill mails.

The fight seemed to go all our way and the enemy left the many wrecks behind when they warped away.

As we were recovering from that encounter I got a convo request from Hendrink Collie.  He happened to be a reader of the blog (so “Hey!” if you are reading this) and wanted to say hello.  He also turned out to be the FC of the fleet we had just fought and was flying the Bifrost I chose to jam, which messed up his target calling and likely helped our side in some material way.  Amazing but true!  Also, I put my drone on him at some point as well, so that shows up on his kill mail rather than my jams.

Then, as we chatted a bit, some Pandemic Legion Astartes landed on us and it was time to pay attention.  However, I did not have to pay attention for long.  Unlike the GotG fleet, the PL gang saw me as a priority target and I was blown up in fairly short order.  We were in a bubble at that point and, as the rest of the fleet burned out to warp away, I was caught and podded and was back in Saranen.  At least I remembered to insure my free ship, so betting against myself paid off.

Thomas Lear also got the chop on that encounter, though did not get podded so was able to get the fleet off mostly still intact.  Another bit of fighting that was pretty much a was on the battle report.

After that I hung around on channel until we got a participation link… gotta show the flag for TNT in the coalition… and then called it a night.

During that op in the Griffin I was too busy to take any screen shots it seems, but I did get a few more from the push and shove in Saranen.

Setting Sail with Yacht Fleet

Things changed up a bit while we were down in Querious.

Before we headed down south for our deployment there was a small conflict boiling between the Imperium and some low sec residents over moons.  When fighting them we were often facing a ball of ships like this:

Machs at the POS shield

Tishu and friends at a POS

That is a batch of Machariels supported by a Nestor and a Bhaalgorn and some Guardians and what looks to be a Proteus maybe.  A lot of expensive ships piloted by people with slave implant sets.  The backbone of the fleet is the Machariel which, by general consensus, seems to be pretty much the best battleship in the game.  It moves fast, warps fast, can absorb a huge amount of damage, and with a Nestor on hand for refits, has a damage projection envelope second to none.

A tough nut to crack, and we sacrificed many ships to the welp Gods as part of the learning process.  Not that we didn’t win, both when it came to towers and the ISK war now and again, but as we were preparing for our deployment it was still an active conflict with victories and defeats.

That all started back in early December.  Then I was busy at work, then there were the holidays, then there was the deployment south, and then I was on vacation and then we got called back home, during which time I wasn’t paying much attention to the fight in the north.

Upon getting home and getting settled, a new fleet composition was announced.  The new doctrine, called Yacht Fleet, seemed to be the admission that we were going to beat Machariels by flying Machariels.  We would now be flying those and Nestors and Bhaalgorns and Vindicators and a few other things.

Including Abaddons pretending to be Bhaalgorns I guess...

Including Abaddons pretending to be Bhaalgorns I guess…

Supplies of the Angel Cartel ship seemed to be sufficient and I guess we had have the money to reimburse losses.  Why not go with the best?

New doctrines, especially with shiny new ships, are always exciting.  Granted, if you happened to invest heavily in a now defunct doctrine, you might be less than thrilled. (WTS: 8 Harpies)  But I wasn’t invested in anything but the logi ships, and Yacht Fleet will be using the same Guardian fit as our previous armor doctrine, so I was set on that front.

Guardian squeezed in amongst the battleships

Guardian squeezed in amongst the battleships

So that was new.  But so apparently was the situation in the north.  Somewhere along the way our Imperium allies, SpaceMonkey’s Alliance got into a conflict with the EVE Online based gambling site I Want ISK (who I mentioned earlier this week when they dropped 1.8 trillion ISK to max out a new character via skill injectors), something covered here, which lead to I Want ISK hiring Tishu to bring the war to SMA’s homeland in Fade.  So fights appear to be moving there.  Which is fine.  When it comes down to it, I don’t get involved in the politics I just go where the fleet goes.

Anyway, I was excited to see the first ping… well, the first one while I was at home… for Yacht Fleet.  I logged in, hopped in a guardian, got into fleet, and off we went.  The vulnerability window for SMA space was up and there were things to save and a rumor of a Tishu fleet in the vicinity.

So the first thing we had to do was undock, fly around frantically for a bit, then sit and wait for a while as Jay got updates from the intel channel.  Then there was more flying about, though it sounded like we might have a target.  I thought this was going to be great, seeing two Machariel fleets beat on each other.

And then we found Tishu in the form of a smaller fleet flying Cerberuses.  That wasn’t going to be nearly as interesting.  We managed to pin them down for a bit, pop some of their logi and a few Cerbs, before they decided to leave, after which we covered the ihub entosis effort then headed back for home.

Once more, Fozzie Sov in action...

Once more, Fozzie Sov in action as we all sit and watch…

There was word of a Pandemic Horde fleet in the area that was allegedly supposed to reinforce Tishu, but which did not arrive in time.  But aside from a couple of ships tailing the fleet looking to grab stragglers, the journey home was uneventful.

And so went my first op with what may be our most expensive subcap doctrine so far.  Flying Machariels as a mainline doctrine is a long way from where Goons started back in the day.

Once it was just Rifters...

Once it was just Rifters…

As for me and the Machariel… I am tempted to buy one to give it a try.  I like flying new ships and I am just a day of training away from having all the skills needed to get reimbursed. (I’m already there for the Bhaalgorn, but need Minmatar Battleship V for Vindicator reimbursement, which is about 20 days off.)  Then again, even with reimbursement, that is a lot of ISK for a ship.  I might be content just flying logi and watching the big ships brawl.