Tag Archives: Y-2ANO

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.


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.


Six Weeks of World War Bee

The war carries on in the game, on Reddit, and in other media.

I mentioned Fountain Frank last week.  Well, there was more news on the Fountain Frank front as Brisc Rubal managed to track him down and interview him on the Meta Show.

At last you can get the real word on the war situation.

The Northern Front

In Fountain PandaFam has completed taking all of the ihubs in the region.  They own all the space now.

The Fountain ihubs all in PandaFam hands

Some hay has been made on Reddit about this being accomplished in under six weeks while it took the CFC of old eight weeks to evict TEST back in the Fountain War of 2013. (A timeline post here of that war.)  The missing bit is that after eight weeks TEST had to evac to low sec while we still have our main line of defense still in Delve.  Oh, and there is the whole Keepstars in Fountain thing.

Attention has now become focused on Upwell Structures in Fountain. There are still a string of structures that belong to the Imperium in the region.  That includes some Keepstars.  PandaFam has blown up three Keepstars in the region so far.

Three Keepstars Down

The remaining three Keepstars, located in O-PNSN, KVN-36, and Y-2ANO, are the next big targets.  My post yesterday was about the successful defense of the Keepstar in Y-2ANO when PandaFam failed the armor timer and had to start their attack over again.  More than 4K people were involved, with the balance well in the attacker’s favor.

Local during the fight

Now they have to do it all again.

With their supers and titan still sitting idle down in FAT-6P in Catch, the attackers have been depending on fighters from carriers to do the heavy lifting when attacking structures.  The Imperium response has been to configure fleets to kill fighters in order to make any structure fight as slow and painful and costly as possible.  Fighters are not only pricey, but I am told they are logistically awkward to bring forward to a staging system far from home… and all the more so when the supply lines get interdicted.

PandaFam started to show some reluctance to lose fighters.  A couple of Fortizars were saved when they just pulled back their fighters rather than let the Imperium take its toll.  Saturday’s Keepstar fight saw the attackers completely avoid sending fighters to the structure until it became clear that their plan to keep the timer paused with a fleet of Ravens wasn’t going to work.  Those Ravens were wiped out in two bomb runs.  Only then did they send fighters, though it was too little too late.

Both sides will no doubt draw lessons from the fight at Y-2ANO and we will see how things turn next time.  PandaFam seems back on board with using fighters and absorbing the cost as they set the first timer on the O-PNSN Keepstar yesterday.  That is the furthest one from Delve, so is more difficult for us to get to and defend.  They also managed to kill one of the Imperium Fortizars in Y-2ANO, but did not set the timer for the Keepstar.  The ISK war went their way though, and they blew up a lot of Feroxes.  They have not let the loss on one Keepstar timer phase them.

The Southern Front

I was looking at the Querious map and was surprised to see how well Legacy had done over the last week… and then realized I was looking at TCUs and not ihubs.  Once I switched to the ihub view I was reconfirmed in my belief that TEST and Legacy are not doing much at all.

I have, in the past, implied, sometimes strongly, that TEST seems willing to let PandaFam in the north do the heavy lifting.   But given the past week I am just going to say that is pretty close to being an established fact.  They do distract us, keep us busy at times, and win their share of skirmishes, but they aren’t really bringing it to us the way PandaFam has been so far.  They are more “annoying neighbor” than “hostile invader” most days.

The situation brings to mind a bit of propaganda from the 2013 Fountain War.


The same allies are keeping them in play seven years later.  Time is a flat circle, or something like that.

Back to the ihub map of Querious, it shows that Legacy continues to struggle with the systems in eastern Querious they were so proud to have taken previously.

The Querious flood plain – Aug 16, 2020

Their ihub count is 21 as of this writing, down a few from last week, representing about a quarter of the 95 systems in the region.  Legacy did use the distraction of the battle in Y-2ANO to reinforce a bunch of ihubs, and some are in play even now.  But they have some work to do to even get back to their high water mark of 41 ihubs they held back at the end of week four.

They also continue to thrash about trying to grasp some sort of foothold in the west of Querious or Period Basis.  Delve seems pretty safe from them so far.

Meanwhile, when the Imperium forms up and when Legacy won’t fight, we go into their space to cause problems.

The high point of the week in that regard was when GSOL flew into Esoteria, TEST space, and dropped around 70 Athanors in the A-CJGE system, covering most of the 82 moons there.  When Legacy drops structures in Period Basis or Querious, we’re very aggressive at hunting them down and blowing them up as they anchor, and we anticipated they would do the same.

We formed up a bomber fleet and some Slippery Petes to be ready when TEST formed up to shoot the structures as they anchored, their most vulnerable time, as you can simply kill them without having to go through multiple timers.  We thought maybe some dreadnoughts would show up as happened previously.

However, TEST and its allies were only able to form a small bomber fleet which killed only two of the anchoring Athanors before retiring.  There ended up being about 68 live, fueled structures in their space which they now have to take down in three separate operations per structure.

They have killed a few more since, but when I visited on Friday there were plenty alive and active with no timer set.

The list of Athanors in the system

We could set them to pull moon chunks and have a mining op I suppose.

This is not the way successful invasions generally work.

My Participation

I managed more than a fleet a day last week.  Not all of them were combat operations.  I did a couple where we were just ferrying various ships here and there to prepare defenses.  I am 22 PAPs up on the month so far.

Being out and about meant some more losses.  Only two, a Ferox in the big fight and a Sigil during an entosis op.  I am surprised I didn’t lose my Sabre during the shield fight at the Y-2ANO Keepstar, but somehow it lived to return home.

My ship loss count for the war so far now stands at:

  • Ares interceptor – 8
  • Atron entosis frigate – 5
  • Drake entosis battle cruiser – 3
  • Scalpel logi frigate – 2
  • Bifrost entosis command destroyer – 1
  • Cormorant destroyer – 1
  • Purifier stealth bomber – 1
  • Hurricane battle cruiser – 1
  • Sigil entosis industrial – 1
  • Ferox battle cruiser – 1


The Keepstar armor timer fight did see quite a turn out, with more than 4,000 capsuleers counted on the battle report… you only get counted if you’re attached to a kill mail somehow… plus all of those on standby or doing peripheral tasks.

It helped that the timer was set for a Saturday at a time when both US and EU players were likely to log in.

The peak online user count for the day hit at 16:38 UTC, during the fight, when 34,544 accounts were logged in. Not a bad count for a Saturday.  But 30K of that number were involved in other space business.

And Sunday was still the high water mark for the weekend, with a peak of 34,974, even though there was no huge battle going on.  That was about where it was last week, when it hit 34,855, but still down from the start of the war when it hit 38,838.

So it goes.

I am now waiting for the July MER to be released.  CCP used to manage that early in the month, but they have been running late on it this year.  I want to see what the impact is on the markets, total destruction, and ratting and mining.  With the war focused on the southwest of null sec, those living elsewhere are likely free to mine and rat without bother.  I expect to see PandaFam regions doing very well.


Defending the Y-2ANO Keepstar

The war over the ihubs in Fountain, such that it was, is over.  PandaFam took the final one this past week.  Now there is just the structure in cleanup.  And that too has gone well for the attackers so far.  There were six Keepstars, the big targets, in the region and they have blown up three of them so far.

Three Keepstars Down

The remaining three Keepstars, located in O-PNSN, KVN-36, and Y-2ANO, were the next obvious targets.

PandaFam chose to go after the one in Y-2ANO, which is also the closest one to Delve, being on grid with the region gate to ZXB-VC.  The theory I have heard regarding the choice is that, in taking away the Y-2ANO Keepstar, they would hinder our ability to defend the other two.  We could not just undock a titan and use it to bridge fleets to help with the defense of the Keepstars deeper in the region.

This past Thursday they began their assault by hitting the Keepstar in order to set the first timer.  This involves knocking down the shields, after which the count down starts for the next round, the armor timer.

I missed the start of that fight, but showed up later in an interdictor to help out.

It seemed to go about the way it went back at armor timer in IGE-RI.  The enemy brought subcaps and carriers.  The fighters from the carriers were used to attack the Keepstar while the subcaps fought.  There were a few more people involved, but things played out as before.  The attackers managed to set the timer at a cost in ISK in time.  The battle report shows we did much better on the ISK war, but we lost the objective, and the objective is what matters most on defense.

Shield fight battle report header

It also took them almost three hour to finish the job, and the shield timer is the easy one.  When the fight was over and we left, we could see the clock counting down for the next fight.

The timer to the next fight

The timer was set to come out on Saturday in EUTZ prime time and early USTZ time.  Given that, the fight was expected to attract a lot more pilots.  And the Keepstar itself was said to have tech II armor plates installed, meaning that it would take longer to get through the armor layer and set the final timer.  The expectation was set that it might be one of those fights that goes on all day long.

In the mean time, both sides got ready.  At our end, the night before, I was along for a fleet that moved some resupply ships to the Keepstar, so that if people lost a ship during the fight, they could dock up and reship.  There was some talk about when the ping might come for the fight as the hostiles were looking to get there first to try and hold us off, so we might have to counter by showing up earlier.

Fortunately for me, I wake up by 6am no matter what.  It is part of getting old.  I used to wonder why my grandfather never slept in, and now I have become him.

So I was on and able to do a bit more prep work long before the first fleet pings landed.

I was actually concerned that there were zero Tracking Computer II modules listed on the market at our home Keepstar.  They are part of the extra fit you need to get a Ferox or Megathron set to shoot fighters.

So I ran out in an interceptor to NPC Delve where there were 60 up for sale at around 1.7 to 2 million ISK.  I bought them all up and flew them back.  19 would fit in my cargo hold, with another fit and offline in an empty mid slot.  I listed most of them on the market back at home for 2 million ISK each, where they sold out very quickly.  I hope they went to good use.

The first ping came over Jabber at 14:38 UTC (7:38am my time).

There were three initial fleets flying Megathrons, Feroxes, and Jackdaws.  I had hauled out a replacement Megathron the night before, so that was probably the right choice as I had a reship ready.  But Asher was leading the Ferox fleet, so I went with that instead.

We managed to put 1DQ1-A into 10% tidi just with people logging in, getting in fleets, and undocking.  2,000 people in motion will do that.

Staging slow down

We undocked and and took a titan bridge to the Keepstar in ZXB-VC where the fleets gather up for the push into Y-2ANO.

Megathrons and other Baltec ships bridge in

From there we warped to the gate and started to push through all together.

A clump of ships on the gate

It was there that I ended up getting disconnected.  The Ferox fleet went through and I could hear Asher giving orders and could tell that the fleet was in motion, but I was stuck in the tunnel animation.  There was tidi on both sides of the gate, so I could tell when things went wrong because the animation suddenly started running at full speed rather than the slow rate that indicates tidi.

I closed the client and tried logging back in.  The character screen indicated that I had made it into Y-2ANO, another sign that my client wasn’t in sync with the server, but there was so much going on that it took a long to get on.  I hit the jump button on the gate at 15:12 UTC, but didn’t load grid after logging back in until 15:35 UTC, by which time Asher’s fleet had made it away from the gate.

I had been watching some of the INN Twitch stream of the fight and could see that PandaFam had changed their plan from the first attack.  They had decided to try and keep us out, so they put the fighters from their carriers on the gate along with some subcaps, no doubt with the intent of trying to thin us out as we tried to get through the bubbles around the gate.

My lone Ferox trying to escape the bubbles

I was a big of an obvious target out by myself and was primaried by a Munnin fleet that was part of the group guarding the gate.  The game was moving so slowly that I saw my pod get ejected and got to watch the ship fly off for a bit before it finally exploded.

Bye-bye Ferox!

I got to watch that as I tried to motor out of the bubbles, but they popped by pod as well, sending me back to 1DQ1-A.

Back home, I hopped in a travel ceptor and headed back towards the fight.  I dropped fleet, thinking that I might have to get out the Megathron and join that fleet.

Getting back in the second time was much quicker and, of course, I could just warp out of the bubbles in my Malediction.  (The only thing faster was my SPR payment.  I filed for when I ended up back in 1DQ1-A and saw the ISK hit my account as I jumped into Y-2ANO.  The SRP team must have been ready to go.)

I docked up in the Keepstar and checked what was on alliance contract.  I was worried that I might not have the right fit if I grabbed a Ferox (those Tracking Computer II modules came to mind), but there were a bunch there that were the correct Keepstar defense fit. (Which probably explains why the market was dry of them.)  So I bought one of those, got into that ship, and rejoined the fleet, all of which took a lot longer at the time it took to type that out.

While I was doing all of that, the plan of the attackers started to unravel.  The plan, I gather, was to use the carriers and subcaps to kill us on the gate while a TEST Raven fleet kept the Keepstar timer paused.

However, two bombing runs later, the first led by DBRB and the seconds by Sister Bliss of The Initiative, left 200 Raven wrecks in their wake, allowing the Keepstar to continue its repair cycle. (Video of TEST Ravens exploding)

Undocked on the Keepstar we could see the hostile fighters, which had been engaged elsewhere, now turning our way to try and hit the Keepstar.  We took them under fire as they hove into range, but they were too few and too slow.  The timer ran down below a minute and it looked like we were going to win.  We all keyed up and counted down the last ten seconds as there was nothing in range than could stop the clock.

The repair timer hits zero

After that, the attackers were back to where they were on Thursday night.  The would have to shoot the shields again to set a new timer and come back again at a later date.  They did not seem inclined to do this and the next couple of hours were spent skirmishing and trying to extract.

The final battle report shows losses fairly evenly split.

Armor timer battle report header

Given that they had 800 more people than us on the report… more than three fleets worth of pilots… we did pretty well.  But fighting on your own Keepstar is a big advantage (something we’re just learning, as our history is attacking them, not defending them), as is the fact that the timer is not affected by tidi as it runs down, but runs in real time. (Something that bit us back during the so-called Million Dollar Battle a few years back.)  Imperium institutional paranoia expects CCP to change that now that it is helping Goons.

The battle report shows the whole thing lasting more than three hours, but the Keepstar had been saved in under two, so the objective was won in a shorter time than the initial attack that set the timer.

Meanwhile, as that was going on, some Legacy pilots not involved in the fight used this as an opportunity to set some ihub timers and reinforce a couple of Ansiblex jump gates.  Well played, but the war so far shows they are not very good at following up on such ventures.

We’re certainly not done in Fountain.  The attackers will be back.  There are three Keepstars sitting out there still.  If they cannot kill those in a situation where our titans and supers are not in play, then they are going to have a really rough time when they try to cross into Delve and hit Keepstars there.

Other Coverage:

Imperium Capital Move Op Video

I mentioned in my post about the big move op back to Delve earlier this month that our jump to the Y-2ANO Keepstar was being recorded.

A batch of caps arriving in Y-2ANO

Well, I finally spotted the video on YouTube.  It is about four minutes long, which means it is considerably sped up.

But it would have to be sped up, since the jumping in part pushed us deep into time dilation, so the first part of the video ends up being about normal game speed.  As things settle down though our movement on screen accelerates until we align out and begin warping to the gate, which happens much faster than it did at the time.

Still, if you want to see a big pile of capitals jumping to a Keepstar, this will do ya.

A Massive Move Op Gets Me Home from the War

The peace of the north, where the Imperium agreed to withdraw forces back to Delve and not bother the north of null sec for a month and GotG for a full six months, came into effect on Saturday.  And with that began the first big move operation.  It was planned for 18:00 UTC, 11:00am for me, on that Saturday.

The first call to form up came at seven minutes before the hour in a ping and I was ready for it.

The whole operation had been announced almost a week in advance, so I had plenty of time to prepare.  As usual during a deployment, I managed to acquire a range of subcaps in my hangar.  Actually, in both of my hangars, the one in the Keepstar in 6RCQ-V and the one in the station in ROIR-Y in Pure Blind, where Reavers had been based for almost a year.

Usually the accumulation of ships means flying my main and my alt together in multiple move ops and maybe finding somebody with a bit of space in the ship maintenance bay of their capital ship to carry a couple of bombers or such.

This time however, one of the ships I managed to accumulate was a Naglfar dreadnought, a prize from the race that Ranger Gamma ran back in late December.  It was supposed to be a suicide dread, something expendable to drop on a valuable target like a titan   I only managed to use it one, during the first Keepstar battle at X47L-Q, and it survived so I had it to move back.

That turned out to be a bit of a boon.

With almost a week’s notice I was able to pack my ships into the Naglfar and jump it from ROIR-Y to the Keepstar at 6RCQ-V.  There I was able to stuff almost all of my remaining ships into the the ship maintenance bay along with the assorted modules and other stuff that ends up rattling around the corners of your station hangar when you stay in any one place for more than a week or two.  So much nanite repair paste mocking me because I forget to overheat most of the time.

The only ships that did not fit were a couple of travel interceptors, which are easy enough to jump clone to and fly out, and a Megathron battleship for the Baltec doctrine that I think I flew exactly once. (But that was one more time than the Ferox I had there as well.)

The Megathron was problematic.  A Battleship is big and takes up a lot of space in a ship maintenance bay, so I was reluctant to try to foist it off on another cap pilot.  But tech I battleships insure nicely and I wouldn’t miss it if it was gone, so I decided to just fly it home on its own.  I figure, best case, I might scatter a small gate camp and get a kill, while the worst case would be to lose it, collect the insurance, and not have to worry about it anymore.

Megathron in Cloud Ring

So on Wednesday night I undocked it and headed towards Delve.  I knew the risks. The coalition had pinged multiple times “Don’t move yourself!”  But I was going to go for it.  I already knew the route home.  Many trips over the years through the area hes left me with the lay of space.  You get into Fountain, you take the jump bridge to the mid-point of the region, you take the gate that cover the mid-region gap, you take the jump bridge to the gate to Delve, and in Delve you take a jump bridge to where you want to be.

Megathron on its way

The trip went off without incident.  It was even relatively quick.  With the revisions to jump fatigue I only had to wait for a timer to cool down a bit before hitting the next jump bridge.

My small op was done.  The big op was coming.  I was on and ready to go before the first ping came.

The first ping was for four capital fleets, divided up by type, and an overflow fleet.  Those quickly filled up and a second overflow fleet was called.  Then two subcap fleets were called.  If I recall right there was also an overflow fleet for subcaps eventually, and then a final fleet for people who could fly Apostles to help get the strategic force auxiliary reserves home.  I got my alt in for that, so had two accounts running for the move op.

If I had know that was going to be a thing I could have shoved the Megathron in the Apostle to carry it home.  Oh well, it was done already.

Move ops can be long and exasperating affairs, as demonstrated by the classic Endie “trail of tears” graphic memorializing an all day move to Delve from the north.

The Trail of Tears move op

That was back when capitals were rare and the pilots alleged to be the elite.  Now almost any scrub who rats in Delve has at least one capital ship and many of them have supers or titans.

And now, on a Saturday morning I was going to move to Delve with more than 1,800 other capital ships and a couple of fleets of subcaps, all of us sharing the same voice coms channel. (For those interested, there were about 1,400 actual people in the voice coms channel for the ~2,000 ships being moved, so less than a 2:1 ratio of accounts to people.)

There was a non-zero chance of this becoming a nightmare.

Instead, it all ran surprisingly smoothly.  People used all the advance notice we had to get ready, so a fleet of capital ships jumped to the first cyno just a little bit after 18:00.  The dreadnought fleet went at 18:17, while the Apostle fleet, the last to go, was cleared to jump at 18:25, landing on a Fortizar.

About 1,800 capitals tethered

Our first jump was a few gates shy of critical gate to Fountain, but we had jump fatigue to burn off, so we were sent by fleet forward to the last system in Cloud Ring, then gated again by fleets in order to keep time dilation from going crazy.  We held up together on a Fortizar in B-DBYQ, the last system in Cloud Ring, and the jumping off point for the Fountain War five years back.

Aligned in B-DBYQ

Again we were sent through the gate by fleets.  That put is in J5A-IX at the top of Fountain, where we regrouped on the Keepstar there, docking up.

At 19:34 we got the call to undock and, in a moment of hubris, the command was given for all fleets to jump.  That cranks up the tidi to 10% and ended with some disconnects, but for the most part it was just slow.  We got through, landing on the Keepstar in C-N4OD to dock up.

By 19:50, once people got through and things settled down, we were again called by fleets to undock and take the gate to KVN-36, the place where we were ambushed on another move op back in 2015. It ended up looking like a stream of titans being fired from the Keepstar.

You could walk back to the Keepstar on those titans

There we aligned to the Keepstar, then were sent by fleets to dock up, the Apostles going last to avoid bumping.

Apostles aligned and waiting

That put us in the southern half of the region.  We were told that for the next jump, which would bring us to the Delve gate in Y-2ANO, our arrival on the Keepstar would be recorded for use as a propaganda video, so we were all going to jump at once again, but this time we were not to dock up because that wouldn’t look as cool as all the ships arriving and just hanging on the citadel.

Again, lots of time dilation due to all of us going at once, but most people got through okay.  Traffic control was up for a lot of people and was even giving positions in the queue to jump.

412th position in the queue

My dreadnought went through, but the jump by the Apostle was cancelled by the delay.  I set it to jump again and it went through fine on the second go.

A batch of caps arriving in Y-2

I will be interested to see what the footage of us coming in looked like.

After that we all aligned to the ZXB-VC and waited for cynos to get in place in 1DQ1-A.   Another chain of titans was then fired at the gate.

Once through we were cleared to jump to the Keepstar in 1DQ1-A.  The cyno in the Apostle fleet disconnected, but by 20:41 the cyno was up again and I was docked in the Keepstar contracting the Apostle back to the person who handed them out.

Back at the Delve Keepstar

So from the time of the first ping at 17:53 to my being done and able to log off was just about three hours, which is amazing for a move op of this size and complexity.  Pilots new and old managed to make it down.

I think we’ve gotten a bit better as a coalition, but also the leadership has gotten better at keeping these sorts of operations moving.  For one thing, there were markers called at various points, that if you hadn’t reached a certain objective you were too far behind and told to log off and wait for the next move op.  The whole move op didn’t stop people one person disconnected or didn’t follow instructions.

Of course, citadels have made this sort of thing easier as well.  At every jump or gate there was a citadel waiting for us, usually a Keepstar, letting us tether up or dock.

And so it goes.  I am back in Delve for the first time since November of last year.  When I go back to put together all the posts for this deployment, this ought to be the final one.

A gallery of my screen shots from the op: