Tag Archives: TNT

Escalating Battle Sizes in Fade

Asher always warns us to not talk to much about our deployments while they are in progress.  Talking about them… especially on Reddit… brings attention to the fact that there are decent, small scale fights happening somewhere in null sec regularly which gets other people to considering flying over to join in on the fun.  Then things escalate as more people show up and sooner or later you’re back to time dilation sized fights, which are fun once in a while but not something you want to face every night.

So our deployment up into Pure Blind to hound Pandemic Horde and Guardians of the Galaxy didn’t get a lot of mention for a while.  We’ve been up there since November and for most of that time we’ve done our thing with small fleets, occasionally teaming up with TNT, who have a had a fun times deployment like our own going in Lonetrek, but mostly keeping things light.  We prod the locals, drop on their ratters and miners, and dock up when things get too hot for our band.

Then Pandemic Horde moved to Geminate and Guardians of the Galaxy started coming apart under the pressure of our presence, pulling back from trying to camp us, letting us drop structures in their staging, and letting us get away with things an organization that size ought to be able to stomp on given their local capital and super capital dominance.  One of their FCs quit the game while a number of high level defections hit their moral, while some of their internal reactions embarrassed them in public, all of which was documented over on the /r/eve section of Reddit.

Anyway, enough preamble.  GotG’s leader Sort Dragon is back from vacation and knows he is facing a crisis that requires the coalition to stand up and win some fights, while all of this passing through Reddit means that more outsiders will be showing up for battles.

And so it was last night.  One of the Raitaru’s we had anchored on grid with their Keepstar in DO6H-Q was in its final timer and GotG was keen to kill it.  Removing us from line of sight of their staging point would be a good start towards boosting moral.

The Raitaru in question as seen from the Darkness Keepstar

To make sure that they won GotG enlisted the help of their allies NCDot, Mercenary Coalition, and Pandemic Horde for the fight.

At our end Asher was pinging about a big fight to get as many of us on as well as getting the TNT deployment to come over and join us.  In addition TEST, stepping beyond just watching and spamming local in DO6H-Q, brought over a fleet to help us.  We also got a fleet of Jackdaws from Federation Uprising (FEDUP), a faction warfare group that took some space in Cloud Ring on a lark a while back in September and are still there more than six months later. (Kirith Kodachi is part of FEDUP.)

At our end we formed up with the TNT group and were bridged up into Fade to get into position.

Bridging into Fade yet again

There we hung out on the Raitaru with TEST, led by Vily, who once long ago was an FC for the CFC.  They had brought a Cerberus fleet.

Vily in his command ship

There we watched the enemy form.  GotG was forming up a Loki fleet with Hendrink Collie as the FC, flying one of the new Monitor FC ships.  That was the first one I had seen on the live server.

Hendrinks new ride

GotG also had carriers out and were sending fighters towards the Raitaru as the timer counted down.  Also on the field were NCDot in Cerbs, MC in Feroxes, and PH in Jackdaws.

The timer was already in play and the fighters were slow boating towards it before anything happened.  It was not obvious as to whether or not the fighters would get there in time to hit the Raitaru when Asher had the Ishtars spread out around the structure, drop sentry drones, and then led us off tether and into combat.

The Ishtar Train speeds along

Our formation was pretty simple.  We all follow Asher with prop modules on.  The Ishtars shoot the targets called, the support ships bubble, boost, paint, or apply ewar, and the logi tries to keep up with calls for reps.  As with the last fight, life in the logi channel was very busy right off the bat as the enemy tried to trim us back so they could kill off the Ishtars.

That was also when things began to slow down.  Time dilation began to rear its ugly head, so what seemed like a long and busy fight from my own subjective view did not last too long in game time as it was moving at about 20% of normal.  More than a thousand people in local will do that.

Popular Fight

We seemed to be fixed mostly on the Loki fleet which was following Hendrink around in a tight ball.

Monitor and Lokis

They had an advantage on their side.  Being in their staging system they could replace losses very quickly and more than once I heard a target called that we had blown up once already.

A Loki going, only to return again

Our losses ended up jumps away in our staging system with a hazardous path back to the fight.  However our Ishtar fleet was big enough this time around to take down Lokis while we hand substantially more logi than last time so were able to save many ships.  In this the tidi helped with that.  When the game is moving slowly it becomes easier to lock up and get reps on people because the pace becomes leisurely.  The only frustration is that it does take time for modules to spin down, so it can feel like you’re not going to get reps on somebody in time.  But we did pretty well, saving people deep in armor (or sometimes in structure) before they blew up.

The haze of the cap chain and reps in the battle

Meanwhile we kept in contact with the Loki fleet, chipping away at them.

Inside the Loki ball

At one point GotG dropped an Apostle force auxiliary on grid with us and the Raitaru to help rep the Loki fleet.  This became a priority target and was blown up before too long.

The Apostle coming apart

Somewhere along the line I had launched the Warrior IIs in my drone bay and then lost track of them.  They were likely done in by smart bombs in the Loki fleet.  But that meant not having anything to send towards the Apostle to get on that kill.  Ah well.

Meanwhile I am not sure how much the fax helped GotG.  Their fleet zoomed by the wreck not long after the Apostle was lost.

Lokis near the Apostle wreck

As this was all going on the fighters from the carriers had arrived on the Raitaru with about a minute left on its timer and were able to stop it as they chewed away at its structure.

The Raitaru in the middle of all of this

There came a moment of decision.  There was a mass of fighters on the Raitaru.  We could try to shoot them and maybe save the citadel, though it was not certain we could do it, or we could shoot GotG ships some more.  Asher opted for the latter and among the eventual victims was Hendrink Collie’s Monitor, aptly named, “Asher NOOOOOOOOO.”

Target the Monitor

That was the first Monitor kill for almost everybody though again, having lost my drones somewhere, I missed out.

By that point the Raitaru had exploded, fighters were being recalled, and our reason for being there had expired.  It was time to go.  Asher sent the Ishtars off to scoop up their drones, sentry drones being stationary, long range models.  That actually led to a series of Ishtar losses.  There were still hostiles on grid with us and they started picking off lone Ishtars.  They would broadcast for armor but were mostly out of range of reps and sometimes out of lock range, so we took some last minute losses that might have been avoided.  Nothing like being on top of broadcasts for a long stretch and then getting a string where you can’t help.

We then headed out, keeping together so as to prevent stragglers from being picked off.  The tidi outside of DO6H-Q was worse than inside the system as several fleets pushed through gates.  Asher told us we needed to get back to our staging and reload drones as there was another objective to hit.  But by the time we got back to the station that event had already played out and we were done for the night.

On the GotG side of things they managed to complete their main objective in DO6H-Q.  They destroyed the Raitaru in question and another without any resistance.  The battle report shows they paid a price for that objective.

Battle Report Header

The ISK war clearly went in our favor.

Furthermore, as Asher notes in his after action report post on Reddit, while this was going on other forces were able to go out and kill a Tatara and an Athanor, so you can understand why we might feel pretty good about how the night turned out. (Also his AAR explains the broader fight as opposed to my narrow logi view.)

There is also a video of the fight up on YouTube now that shows a few items I mentioned above.

And a thousand ships is a sizable fight.  It seems like we might be past the time of 60-80 person fleets going out for objectives.  The fights are growing in size as the nature of the conflict escalates for GotG into a need to prove they can defend their own space.

 Addendum: Another video of the fight, this one with some of our coms, including bad puns.

VNI Victory in Fade

I HATE this kind of BR because it looks like we didn’t fight a lot of guys but what actually happened was they didn’t kill anything and the only living ships on the BR from their side are the ones that smartbombed their own ships that did die.

-Asher Elias, post-op ping

I have been slacking on the New Eden front of late.  I haven’t really logged on since that mid-November hot drop up north.  Things to do, pet battles to fight, and so on.

It already being a week into December I figured I had best check in and at least see what was going on.  As it turned out I got back in Jabber at an opportune moment.  Not only were we still deployed up north, so I was parked in the right station still, an op had just been announced.   Going along on the op would require me to purchase a new ship however.  The Vexor Navy Issue was the ship of choice.

The VNI, as it is commonly called, is a faction cruiser, a drone boat, and, in my experience, often the favored ship of low budget ratters in null sec who take on anomalies with the doughty little craft.

A VNI in station showing its distinctive color scheme

It has enough speed and shields when fit correctly to survive forsaken hubs and the like, but it isn’t a hard target.  Those who come into our space to hunt ratters often choose to go after VNI pilots because they are viewed as easy kills if they get caught unaware.

But the VNI is cheap… well, cheaper than an Ishtar and much cheaper than a carrier… so if you get a few anoms in the ship has paid for itself and you can afford to get another one.

So not exactly a combat ship of the line in my experience.  But Asher always has something new going on and I’ll buy into whatever doctrine he has in mind just to be able to go along for the ride.  There were some up on GSF alliance contract so I got somebody to buy me one in advance so I would be ready.

Being me I also looked to see if I had a SKIN for the VNI.  Oddly… or perhaps not… I had no SKINs for that hull.  While the VNI is actually a sharp looking ship, I always like to look a bit different.  However, out in the deployment station there weren’t any SKINs on the market for the VNI.  But CCP has a new SKIN set for Gallente up in the New Eden Store, the Kopis Edge style.  Somebody described the look as Gallente trying to disguise themselves as Amarr, but the cruiser SKIN was only 55 PLEX so I bought one and activated it.

Khopis Edge VNI

I got myself set for the op then busied myself with other things.  As I waited I saw a ping come up for a TNT op.  My alliance is also up north, though hanging out in a different system.  They too were calling for a VNI fleet, which made me wonder if the null sec meta had changed in some way since I had last been on.  Two separate VNI ops on the same night, though the TNT op was forming a good 30 mins before the Reaver op.

Of course there wasn’t really two ops as I found out a little later, but a single op.  My alliance and my SIG were joining forces for a fight.  The destination was DW-T2I in the Fade region where the Imperium had dropped an Astrahus to annoy the locals, in this case Pandemic Horde, and force them to come out and fight.  Dropping on their ratters and miners wasn’t enough, we wanted to shoot them in larger numbers.

As our op came together TNT made their way to us and we joined up on the way the the target system.  There we found the friendly citadel already into its timer with a PH Tempest fleet, supported by some anti-bomber destroyers, already hitting it, the timer paused at 11m 49s.

The state of things on our arrival

We landed on the citadel and tethered up.  After getting ourselves together and anchored on Asher, he had us drop sentry drones in small groups around the Astrahus.  When everybody had their drones deployed we were given a target to lock up and began shooting.

One, two, three, four, the hostile logi, tech II Guardians, were blown up as the Astrahus gunner joined in with void bombs and points when he could.  The hostile response was to try and pick off some of our drones and to smart bomb, presumably to shake off any tackle that might come their way.  Our drones were not going to come get them.  Sentry drones are immobile.

PH smartboming away

They managed to wipe out some of their own logi support with the smart bombs, but not much else.  After we shredded their logistics support they turned and warped off.  A few stragglers were tackled and blown up, but most got away.  Our losses so far were a single Sabre against 8 Guardians, a Damnation command ship, a Tempest, a Loki, and a Stiletto.

A good exchange from our perspective.

A gaggle of Mordus Legion Cormorants showed up about then and tried to take a shot at us. But after losing a couple of their ships for none impact on us they buggered off and found a wormhole to Delve where I understand they found a warm reception.

There was still time to go before the Citadel would be safe, and Asher figured they would be back with their Tempest fleet, this time with force auxiliary support to keep them from getting popped.   So he had us dock up, abandoning our sentry drones for the moment, but leaving them all on grid, and swap in some heavy drones in our bays.

The sentry drone menace still on grid

We then undocked and resumed our lolling about the citadel, anchored on Asher, waiting to see if they would return as expected.

Crowd of VNIs anchored up

Pandemic Horde did show up again as expected, their Tempest fleet landing at range to keep away from the sentry drones.  The began firing, pausing the citadel timer again, this time with just under a minute to go.

Not much time left…

We turned for them and launched heavy drones this time, sending them after the hostiles before their fax support showed up.  But no force auxiliaries ever arrived.  They were back with the remains of their force just to see if they could find an angle to hit the Astrahus without us killing them.

That plan proved to be futile.  We knocked out a Loki first as they tried to head shot Asher.

Their Loki going down to drones

After that we began to chew up the Tempests again.  They started to smartbomb but were far enough apart, and their caps were denuded by several well placed void bombs, that it was not seem very effective.  Half a dozen Tempests went down before the rest escaped.

A Tempest about to explode

They left behind their own drones, which we mopped up, leaving the field to us.

An Acolyte II’s shield flaring from hits

Meanwhile the citadel timer ran down so it was safe for the next six days.

Safe for now

All told, according to the battle report, we popped 45 enemy ships… well, they killed a few of their own, but we’ll claim them… worth about 6.2 billion ISK for the loss of a single interdictor.

Unfortunately, as Asher noted in the quote at the top of the post, since they barely killed anything besides their own ships, only those we blew up and those that smartbombed their own comrades appear, plus whoever got our dictor.

From there we were able to head home, enjoying Asher’s joke, which was to fight them in the same sort of ratting ships they are usually flying when we hunt them.

Later we went hunting for their VNIs in interceptors and I got popped by a Serpentis dreadnought.  I learned that they will point and neut you pretty fast, and all the more so if you boost your signature by lighting your microwarp drive so he can target you faster.  You live and learn… or die and learn.  I did get my pod back home in one piece, denying the an easy kill I suppose.

TNT Joins the Keepstar Club

TNT CEO Wibla announced yesterday that our Keepstar project, which had been collecting donations of ISK and materials since February or so, had finally come to fruition.

I kicked in a billion ISK, which isn’t all that much relative to the cost of the thing, but which represented about 10% of my ISK on hand at the moment.  So I had to go visit it.

The TNT Keepstar named “Wibla’s temple of SHOOTBLUES”

The Keepstar is the largest of the Upwell Consortium citadels. It is big enough to allow super captial ships to dock, something that was a big change when they were introduced a little more than a year ago.  And, since the YC119.5 update, there are alliance and corporation logos visible on them.

The TNT logo between the uprights

That logo is pretty big.  I tried getting a sense of its scale by flying my Ishtar, a cruiser hull, up to it.  You can just see the green tethering line ending in my ship. (It is easier to pick out if you click on the picture to see a larger version.)

Tiny Ishtar, big logo

All I can say is that it is very big, which makes the Keepstar itself huge.  There are a few other structures anchored in the vicinity from which the Keepstar is easily visible.

A human structure clearly visible from 3,000km away is big indeed.  You can see the other structures from the Keepstar… the Azbel at 3,000km is visible in the background of the giant logo screen shot… but they are much harder to pick out.

So we are in the Keepstar club now. one of nearly half a dozen such structures in Delve at this point. (Addendum: The count is actually seven)  I did see that we opted not to include the alliance leader display option on our Keepstar.  I am not sure how this setting works, but I do see the menacing visage of The Mittani on GSF citadels every so often.

Mittens is watching you

We might be better off without a capital ship sized Wibla on our Keepstar.

Life in Tribute

I suppose the real end of TNT in Deklein was when we finally handed over sovereignty in K5F-Z2 a couple of weeks back.

K5f-Z2HandoverThat was the end of an era, as the alliance had held that system since early December 2009, making for a five and a half year run of continuous occupancy.  I was told on a number of occasions that TNT dominion over K5F was the longest running sovereignty still current, and I could find nothing to dispute that claim.  Now that title will have to pass to another system and another alliance.  I am not sure who wins that prize, though I suspect that it might fall to Goonswarm and their holdings in the region.  Deklein has been a rock of stability for a long stretch.

But now we are coalescing down in Tribute, which has its ups and downs.

Tribute Region - July 2015

Tribute Region – July 2015

After several years of traveling to and fro in Deklein, I have found that I actually know the neighborhood fairly well.  It turns out that the seemingly random alphanumeric designations of systems in null sec isn’t any harder to get used to than the odd, and sometimes seemingly unpronounceable, system names of high and low sec.  (I’m looking at you, Uosusuokko.)  And the standard voice coms practice of designating a system by its first three letters ends up working and makes routes easy to remember over time. (Though there are any number of systems where I am not sure if they include the letter O or a zero in their designation, since everybody just says, “Oh” on coms.)

Now I have a new neighborhood to learn.  My knowledge currently stops at UMI-KK, which was the staging system for a war a some time back.  And we have new neighbors in the form of the Circle of Two alliance.  They have apparently taken a hard line with us, objecting if we stray into their systems in pursuit of hostiles.  After having free run of Deklein with Goonswarm, that is something of a change.  Then again, Circle of Two seems to be known for making friends.  If we’re out on ops and working with Pandemic Legion, they are fine cooperating with most of us, but will go out of their way to shoot anybody from Circle of Two.  So they have that going for them.

It also puts me an awkward distance away from the coalition staging system in YA0-XJ.  That used to be a few gates distant, but now it is a ways off.  I can get there via a jump bridge and some gates, but for a form-up it will most likely have to be a jump clone move to get there and not have any jump fatigue hanging over me.

I have been glad of having a carrier finally.  During the move down to Tribute and then setting myself up in a constellation in which to rat on the occasional off day when I am up for it, I have ended up doing more jumps in my Archon in the last month than I had done in the first 18 months after I bought it.

Archon... landing too far from the station...

Archon… landing too far from the station…

I have found myself a system with a station off the beaten path where a pile of Euro TZ miners seem to hang out… and they start logging off about the time I start logging in, so that I have gotten the system to myself later in the evening a few times.  I have even used that ratting fit Ishtar I built quite a while ago but only just undocked last week.  I at least got a couple of anomalies done with it before the Aegis expansion Ishtar nerf.  I’ll probably got back to my heavy missile Tengu again after that, since missiles are getting a boost.  We’ll see.

It is also somewhat strange to look at the map of Tribute and see low sec systems I recognize from my early days in EVE Online.

I started out as Caldari back in 2006 when the initial tutorial ended up sending you to Jita, which wasn’t quite the big city back then, but still felt a bit crowded.  So I packed up and moved to what I felt was a distant location… Hageken, all of six jumps from Jita… and spent quite a bit of time there before deciding to move to Amarr space.

But names I remember from way back then, like Navula, where I was blown up a couple of times, are suddenly quite close.  Hell, even Jita suddenly seems quite close.  Deklein felt like it was deep into null sec, but Tribute is a border region.  Even our staging system is a single jump freighter hop to the low sec systems favored by coalition shipping operations.  Not that the proximity seems to lower the price any.  Those that actually deliver to UMI-KK charge the same 300 ISK per m3 as a delivery to YA0-XJ, despite that requiring an extra jump.  I suspect that we are a low-volume market compared to the heart of Goonswarm, so we’re probably lucky that somebody stops by on demand.

And then there is what will come with Fozzie Sov on the 14th.  I have just been logged into the Goonswarm Jabber for updates for quite a while now, since that is where Reaver messages pop up.  But I will have to get back into TNT coms more thoroughly as well, as local defense against people testing out Entosis Links on the frontier.  We shall see how lively things get in the region once that hits, but for now it is actually fairly quiet when I have been on since the move.

Farewell to Home in Deklein

There was a bitter sweet change on the sovereignty map with Tuesday’s update, as my own alliance gave up most of their systems in Deklein as part of the realignment of systems required by the changes to the sovereignty mechanics this summer.

20150602SovChangesTactical Narcotics Team, or TNT, handed over a system I have considered home for most of my time in null sec.  While TNT’s main base was CU9-TD, and the coalition staging systems have been VFK-IV and YA0-XJ, I have always considered 0P-F3K as home, the place where I hung my hat, stored all my excess junk, ratted, and always had a jump clone.

Under new management... mostly

Under new management… mostly

For the moment TNT still holds 4U90-Z and K5F-Z2, the latter being the current champion for a system continuously held by a single alliance, having been acquired by TNT back on December 2, 2009.  Five and a half years is a long, long time in New Eden.  That was before Goonswarm had come north, when they still lived down in Delve and Querious… on purpose and not because they recently invaded it yet again… and Pandemic Legion held sovereignty for themselves and Atlas Alliance owned the southeast.

When I moved into null sec at the end of 2011, and at the start of the war with White Noise and Raiden, the then-CFC was packed into less space.

CFC Land, December 2011

CFC Land, December 2011

The CFC then stretched out, at one time running all the way from Period Basis in the far southwest to Tenal in the extreme northeast, in an arc that covered about half of the area of sovereign null sec, if not half of the actual systems.  During that time TNT expanded its holdings, picking up systems in Pure Blind and Tribute to tend for the coalition.

Then came the announcement of Fozzie Sov.  With the Phoebe expansion, and the coming of jump fatigue, Period Basis, Querious, and Delve were sold off.  And, as the next round of changes loomed, Fountain was abandoned as well, leaving the newly minted Imperium focused back in the north… with a couple of groups still operating in other regions.

Regions of The Imperium - June 2015

Regions of The Imperium – June 2015

Contrary to what I previously wrote, we do not appear to be letting go of Cloud Ring.  Fweddit, or J4LP, or I Whip My Slaves Back and Forth, or whatever they should be called, appears to be taking up residence in the region, which is not all that large but which has a couple of important connections to other regions.  Fweddit has been part of the coalition for a while now… I think.  I just don’t hear much about them, they disappeared of the sov map for a while, and their logo doesn’t appear in official Imperium propaganda videos.

The Imperium Alliances... sans the Fweddit space chicken I guess...

The Imperium Alliances… sans the Fweddit space chicken I guess…

But there they are holding space in Cloud Ring along side Goonswarm, so they must still be on the team, and they’ll be our bulwark against Black Legion.

That all means we are holding eight regions, which annoys me for purely aesthetic reasons.  I thought “The Seven Regions” was close enough to “The Seven Kingdoms” from Game of Thrones to be amusing.  I guess I won’t be able to beat that joke into the ground.  The lands of The Imperium have condensed though.

Imperium Space - June 2015

Imperium Space – June 2015

So amidst all of that, TNT is focusing on Tribute as our new home, a region we will be sharing with Circle of Two.  That puts us on the doorstep of Venal, and NPC controlled null sec region, and just a few jumps away from our friends in Mordus Legion.  It also, oddly enough, puts me potentially a couple jumps away from the first system I was blown up in (such a tale too, go click on that link) playing EVE Online, M-OEE8.

The move also puts me close to my original home in Caldari space.  It is just five gates from M-OEE8 to Hageken, the system where I first set up shop after finishing up my initial missions in Jita.  I remember feeling like I had gone WAY off the grid back then.  It was the wild west, with people looting jet cans and getting feisty over asteroids and such.  I lost a very badly fit Caracal to a jet can thief.  That 0.6 security status was off the hook!

Now I look at the map and see I made it all of six jumps from Jita on my first venture.  Well, it seemed daring back then!  I still have a pile of stuff, including a Moa cruiser, in the Caldari Navy Assembly Plant station in Hageken.

So that is where I will be headed, at least once I get back north.  I’ve moved most of my stuff down there already, leaving some strategic doctrine ships, and a jump clone, up in the coalition staging system at YA0-XJ.  But the bulk junk is down in Tribute.  We shall see how the new location plays out.

(As usual, sovereignty maps swiped from the usual source, with regional maps coming from DOTLAN.)

Black Sheep Down

In which we engage in a little corporate drama and sheep fancy.

The true enemy of organizations in null sec are not hostile in your systems, or SBUs on your gates, or bad fleet doctrines.

The real killer is entropy, the slow wasting away of your corporation or alliance or coalition until it is just a shell of its former self.

Sure, in New Eden, as in real life, such pressures can accelerate entropy.  The evacuation from null sec of Intrepid Crossing might illustrate what a shock to the system can do.  Razor jumping on them for fun one time too many made them evac, but the root cause was more likely the rot from within.  Razor just wanted a fight and suddenly the door came right off in their hand.

But, while CCP’s motto might be “EVE is real,” you, me, and The Mittani are not bound to New Eden.  We don’t live there and our investment in space is purely emotional.  People leave the game all the time.  They take breaks, they tire of the routine, or they just move on.  Some stay subscribed but rarely log in, others let their accounts lapse without a word.

Any organization in EVE ends up with a certain amount of inactive players as time moves on.  If people are leaving, or just coasting, and nobody new is coming in, you can end up with a hollow organization.

But what happens when your leadership tires of space and stops logging in?  That is a problem we were facing.

Our corporation, the British Space Corporation Legion has been around for a while.  If the rather out of date entry on EVElopedia is correct, it was founded on March 16th, 2007.  It has been active and dormant at times and has been part of a number of alliances, most recently with Tactical Narcotics Team up in Deklein.  That is where they were when I joined them about 21 months back.

I joined up to make the jump to null sec space because my friend Gaff sponsored me there.  He has been with TNT for a couple years himself having started out in Skyforger.  He then moved to BSCL which was active and open to members, as was the case when I showed up.

Since then, however, there has been some decline as people have faded from the scene for one reason or another.  And the most noticeable of those spending less time in space was the CEO, Qtipp.  2013 has not been his year for New Eden and he has been away much of the time.  Acknowledging his time away, he put an interim CEO in place for a while.  However that did not work out.  Qtipp showed back up at the outset of the war in Fountain, but faded from view again shortly.

So the corp was adrift.  Participation rates fell after Fountain and leadership was ad hoc as we deployed to Delve.  Serious discussions started behind the scenes as something had to be done; were not looking good in the eyes of the alliance leadership.  Two alternatives came to the fore.

There could be new leadership for BSCL( and a likely purge of the inactive), or there could be a fresh start with a new corp.

Qtipp was willing to let somebody else step into the CEO role officially, but would not part with his shares in, and thus his complete ownership of, the corp.  While that is an understandable position for a corp with a long history, it wasn’t one that the emerging leadership could run with.  So the second option was sent out in a corp-wide email.  The BSCL would be retiring, with Qtipp, from null sec for now.  We bid them farewell and wished them well.  But those who wished to remain in Deklein with TNT were welcome to join the new corp, Black Sheep Down. (Ticker: BAAW)

I was told that the Welsh contingent insisted on the connection to sheep.  I try not to get involved with that aspect of the corp.

So we are now in transition with the new corp up, the old corp departing, and some small chance of losing access, at least temporarily, to all the services to which we have grown accustomed.  Somehow I know that among the three voice coms, three forums, two wikis, two Jabber channels, or various other utilities, something is going to throw up and reject me because “BSCL” is encoded with my account and now I am in “BAAW.”  And, of course, just as I need this, CCP is throwing errors when I go to the API manager page.

Nice picture, but the error...

Nice picture, but not helping…

Paranoid, I went and sat in my high sec clone while updating my access.  But I made this while I was cowering in the station, afraid to undock because of all the goddam neutrals.

Not really a logo

Not really a logo

So we have that going for us.

I am actually pretty happy with that.  Did the rifter silhouette myself.  I just couldn’t find the right font from the cover of the original.  Actually, I found the font (Citizen), I just didn’t want to pay money for it, so Copperplate Gothic for the win!

Meanwhile, on the Delve front, my question has been answered.  We do appear to be done with Delve now.  No more siege fleets for a while.

Delve - Swp. 18, 2013

Delve – Swp. 18, 2013

TEST has been purged from Delve and Period Basis and has just one system left in Querious.

Of course, Querious and areas east of that have become… interesting.

South West - Sep. 18, 2013

South West – Sep. 18, 2013

Solar Fleet and a cast of many are carving up Querious, including my favorite “I really know nothing about them” group, the Walltreipers Alliance.  Against All Authorities, against whom we waged a bitter campaign previously, is pretty much right back where we found them last summer.  And then there are a bunch of other players in the area.  I am sure we’ll be meeting the neighbors soon enough.

Now will it be back to Deklein for us, or another campaign elsewhere?

Who Holds the Oldest Null Sec Sovereignty?

And other bits of sovereignty trivia that are on my mind.

December 2, 2009

We were chatting about the war and the shifting tides of color on the null sec sovereignty map, and the assertion was put forth that our alliance, TNT, has the longest continuous sovereignty claim in null sec.  Specifically, we have held the system K5F-Z2 since December 2009.

My thoughts, after some mild amazement, fell into the usual, “How do we know that is true?”  I have trained myself to be a bit of a skeptic, something I am trying to pass along to my daughter.

The first thing I did was look at the sovereignty maps for the December 2009 time frame.  That would show me large swaths of space that had changed hands when compared with the current map, thus eliminating those as possibilities.  The sov map archive is a treasure.

Sovereignty - December 3, 2009

Sovereignty – December 3, 2009

You can see the mention of K5F in the change list at the top left.  TNT doesn’t hold enough sov to actually show up on the map until a few months later, when the purple dot begins to show up.

The map itself is quite different from today, with many names that no longer exist, as well as a fair number that are still around.  RAZOR is actually in the same place now as they were back then, though they had a hiatus away before they returned to Tenal in the north.  The east has some familiar players, but has changed hands so many times that I doubt there are any challenges to the record there.  The Goons are in Delve… because “Goons in Delve” has the solidity of “white on rice” in the context of EVE.  We’ll see what happens when TEST evacuates.  And the only other possible contender for duration held seems to be Curatores Veritatis Alliance down in Providence.

However, CVA has had its problems over the years, losing and regaining sovereignty.  It looks, in manually clicking through systems they currently hold, that their oldest system only goes back to 2010.

So my half-assed attempt to verify the assertions appears to show that TNT’s claim on K5F-Z2 may in fact be the longest one currently running in null sec.

Now is the point when somebody shows up and proves me wrong.

What About Delve?

The word went out a week ago or so that, in the wake of losing Fountain, TEST was going to evacuate Delve and move to low sec space to do… whatever they think they are going to do there.  This struck me as a bit odd.  Various alliances have their own metrics for what makes them what they are, and I had a sense that TEST was one of those that felt they were only really a player if they held sovereignty in null sec.  I guess I was wrong on that.

In the wake of this there have been attempts to write this chapter of EVE in the usual irreverent manner.  Endie is also a treasure.  Meanwhile TEST continues to break apart and attack itself as people pick apart what went wrong.

I remain surprised at how space famous Gevlon has become in null sec.  You cannot fault him on the persistence front.  I think he has a home in EVE well beyond anything he had in WoW.

But, so far, nobody has really answered the question about what happens to Delve once TEST leaves.  The CFC has said they won’t let Northern Coalition take it, but that is a reactive position.  So who is going to be on the map in Delve come the end of the year?

More On Wallpapers

I wish I knew what was going on in the south of null sec.  I was happy in that sort of “Good for them, they deserve it” way when the Walltreipers Alliance, the one time shining stars of the fight in Delve last summer because of their Alamo-like stand in T-IPZB, showed up on the sovereignty map again as part of the tussle of alliances that took up holdings after the fall of Against All Authorities’ sov holdings.

Small Holdings

Small Holdings

I have no idea how the ended up there or whether the deserved it at all, really.  But it was a name I knew from an alliance that showed fighting spirit in the face of adversity.  Only, in looking for system sovereignty dates over at DOTLAN, I noticed that Walltreipers dropped all of their sovereignty.  So add that to the list of things I have no clue about.  I don’t know how they got there and I couldn’t tell you why they left.  But another name dropped off the sov map as C0VEN moved in.

Oddly, C0VEN appears on that map up above from 2009 in about the same place.

Addendum – If this story is correct, Walltreipers might be planning a trip back to Delve, thus linking my second and third topics.