Tuesday, 30 August 2011

Sansha's MOM has got it going on (AAR)

  Yesterday I was in an incursion fleet working vanguard sites when word came down the MOM was up for our system and a fleet was forming to take it out.  Fortunately for me the FC of my fleet was some kind of head honcho type for the incursions so I got a backstage pass if I wanted to help out.  I was in my Basilisk and agreed to go along and help heal.  We got word on what system to head to, got into the new fleet and I was invited into the basilisk channel.  I thought I was all set for the fight when the guy who formed the channel says we need to have two LSE's or we won't survive the bombers.

Friday, 26 August 2011

Being Logical

Those that have read my earlier posts (all two of you) know that I prefer support class ships in PVP.  I’ve created one post already with my opinion of the ECM ships I fly and I wanted to take some time to discuss the shield logistics ships.  

When I first started flying logi ships I read through several different forums to help gain a baseline understanding of which ship is better in which situations, and to what level should skills be trained.  One thing that kept showing up over and over was that if you’re going to commit to flying logi you should train logistic ships to V.  The reason to spend over 20 days training is capacitor stability.  The additional boost to capacitor efficiency is usually the different between an additional Large Shield Transporter (LST) or having to downgrade to a smaller sized repper.  Tank can also be affected due to a requirement to add a capacitor recharger or capacitor booster in a mid slot.  Overall the value of training to Logi V is completely worth the training time for anyone that intends to fly a logistics ship as a primary playstyle.

Wednesday, 24 August 2011

Flight of the Rumble Bees (AAR)

Fleet: Conduct anti-piracy roam
Personal: Use tackle frigate to better understand tackle role

Fleet: Given low security space in small fleet setting with frigate class combat ships
Personal: Utilize an AC equipped Rifter with AB and Scram to conduct short range tackle

Fleet: Engage only pirate or GCC targets, follow FC commands, have fun
Personal: Tackle at least one enemy ship, preferably being the tackle that holds the ship in place for great justice

Personal notes:  Several kills were made during this roam, and a few losses as well.  The losses were expected considering the choice of light ships.  Overall was fun trying out a different fleet mix and I'm looking forward to the next roam.  I'll detail the overall fleet activity first and then my personal performance before getting into the sustains and improves.

  I flew a Rifter for the first time ever because I failed to plan my JC's last night to coincide with the roam today.  My ECM character was in his PVE clone and wouldn't be able to jump until over an hour after the roam started.  In addition I'm out of EAS so I needed to spend 30mil or so to get a good ship to fly tonite.  I might have gone with a griffin but neither of the alts with accessible JC's is trained in EW warfare.

  The Rifter was shield tanked with 200mm AC II's, an AB, scram, DC II and MSE II for tank, a TE to boost falloff, nano II, and resists coming from the rigs.  I know most PVP Rifters are armor tanked but every fit I came up with using armor had a speed less than 1k mps which I felt was too low when using a close range ship.  I put on the scram to offset the use of an AB and I figured our primary targets would be cruiser or BC class.  If I could get in range of the scram I wanted the AB to keep my transversal up.  I knew I'd have trouble tackling frigate sized targets but we had inties for the speedsters.

Saturday, 20 August 2011

Taking the longcut to a great fight (AAR)

Task: Conduct fleet operation with shield BS arty fleet
Conditions: Combined alliance group looking to engage WT's around the Rens area
Standards: Get into a fight with the WT's and win  

  Situation:  Enemy fleets ranging from 15-30 war targets have dug in at the Rens star system and send out raiding parties to nearby systems. Friendly force commanders desire to engage and defeat WT's in a system away from Rens thus causing the enemy to potentially lose some neutral support and put the fight on more even terms.

  Mission: Coalition forces assemble fleet and conduct roam through outlying areas in order to engage the enemy in pitched battle.

  Execution:  Assemble in REDACTED with long range shield BS, preferably maelstrom class minmatar battleship, with logistics, recon, and ECM support.  FC will determine route based on scouting reports.

  Service/Support:  Logistics and ECM support will be traveling with fleet.  Stations along the route of march can be utilized for last second module exchange or repairs.  No capital or supercapital support will be expected during operation.  Follow on forces will be dependent upon themselves for movement to link up with fleet, no scouting will be available.

  Command and control:  Voice coms will be located on ventrillo at REDACTED.  FC will be in overall command.  Wing or squad commanders should be prepared to execute individual command over their echelon as needed.

  Summary report:  I logged on late tonite for the planned op but my corp leader linked the system the where the fleet was loitering.  Jark is only 6 jumps if I'm willing to cruise by Rens, but in this war the enemy is turned Rens into a wasp nest of neutrals and spies.  Instead I decide to route through metropolis, back into heimatar, and finally into delve.  I think the total jumps was somewhere around 18, but I wasn't counting because I was trying to get voice to work.  Eventually I realized Ventrillo was required and no matter how much I checked the info in TeamSpeak just wasn't gonna work. I started downloaded ventrillo about the time I was heading through two low sec jumps, in a blackbird, and I had to pay attention to flying.  At last I joined the fleet and was about to switch back to loading ventrillo when reds jumped through the gate.  Battle was upon us and I would just have to fight without coms.

Thursday, 18 August 2011

Nulling about

A new blog came out about reshaping null sec (bloggity bloggity) and my interest it was piqued.  I've been into null sec all of once so far and I ended up losing both my ship and pod.  I was very new to the game still and bought a Heron from a corp or alliance mate not knowing the ship was in null.  I decided to go fetch it before I could use a cov ops cloak.  I was at the high sec gate and decided to jump to 100 to check the gate for a camp.  No bubble was up so I proceeded to slowboat to the gate instead of turning to 150km for a warp.  Part of the way there a bubble went up, my cloak got dropped somehow (still don't know if bubbles can uncloak you), and I died.  All in all I had fun seeing something new, found out I needed to learn much more about bubbles, and I've been curious about null ever since.

Sunday, 14 August 2011


  My alliance got war decced this week.  Not my first war but this time I've got a lot more PVP experience from all of the recent roaming.  I want to work on understanding the in's and out's of tackling this time around so I plan to keep the logi and ECM parked and get in some smaller ships that can hold the enemy in place.  I don't want to switch to tackling for large fleets, but I do wish to further my knowledge of how tacklers work and think so I can better avoid them in my support ships.

ECM comparison

  When I started figuring out what I wanted to do in PVP I decided to try ECM.   The first ship I lost in a war-dec was a Kitsune.  I've since flown BlackBirds (BB) and Falcons on several occasions, sometimes even in a fight.  I thought I'd take some time to talk about the strengths and weaknesses I've seen in the ECM ships in case my experiences can be of use to someone else.  Hopefully there will also be some comments to point out ways I can improve my understanding of ECM.

Fight week (AAR)

  I've had a fun week in game although I've failed to post about it so far.  Allow me to remedy that situation.

Fight 1

Earlier in the week I went on a Nano BC roam.  Once again I flew my rusty scimitar (although to be fair the scimitar is a rather beautiful ship) into battle and we ended the night with an impressive fight. 

Sunday, 7 August 2011

Cruiser Roam (AAR)

  Yesterday I went on a T1 cruiser/T2 frigate roam.  The roam was a lot of fun although the value of cruiser sized ships was called into question by the end of the night.  I spent a chunk of the day moving various cruiser sized ships to the start location and on a whim I took my Kitsune electronic attack ship.  I've used a Kit once before and it died rather quickly when I was first learning about ECM ships.  I wanted to start off in a support role and for some reason the Kitsune seemed to call to me.  I think it regretted picking up the phone by the end of the night.

Epic Arc (AAR)

  I helped out a corpmate friday night when he requested some support for gallente epic arc missions.  I took a tank focus Rattlesnake and a Scimitar to back him up.  EHQ indicated I would have be able to tank something like 3000dps with the fit.  The first mission went fine.  I warped in, took agro, shield went down a little, and then scimi landed and no problems.  The next mission though got interesting.  I had to refit for omni tank and I didn't consider neuting so I put on active hardeners instead of passive amplifiers for resists.  The fight was going fine to begin with but my rattlers cap was slowly going away.  Once the cap died so to did my resists and my shield was getting gouged.  Fortunately we killed a BS and at that point the scimi was able to keep me up alone.  I sat on half shield the majority of that mission but we finished in the end.

  Lessons I learned for future epic arc missions: use passive resists when going up against neut ships, bring multiple resist modules along, and epic arcs look fun.  I think I'm gonna look up some Caldari arcs and perhaps give them a go.

Thursday, 4 August 2011

Munching on Feedback

  After I wrapped up yesterdays post I sent my corp an email asking them for advice regarding my training plan dilemma.  The consensus was work on basic level skills, so that is what I shall do.  Tonight was some simple mission running to make back a few iskies.

  Over the last few weeks I've been mixing up my mission fleet.  I've gone from Rattlesnake + Machariel + Noctis to Tengu + Machariel + Maelstrom.  I've tried both arty and AC fits for the maelstrom and I've settled on arty simply because I keep hitting a decent dps barrier around 35km with T1 AC's on the Mael.  A lot of the missions I run have ships hanging out in the 45-60km range and the Machariel can apply decent enough damage out that far with standard ammo or Barrage for stuff 60+.  I'm dissatisfied with the arty Mael too though.  I can apply a medium amount of damage at all ranges, but it just can't keep up with the high damage of my other ships. 

  So I'm thinking of moving from the Mael into another Tengu.  I've got the missile and ship skills, I just need the T3 specific stuff.  The ship cost is a bit high as well but I've got spares of most modules I use on my primary Tengu.  I know some people swear by the Nitemare for mission running, but I'm completely happy with my Tengu.  I started off on the standard Caracal > Drake > Raven route, but I wish I had gone for a Tengu at that point.  Instead I got a Rattlesnake and while it did the job I soon grew bored of sitting on the sentries.

  I highly recommend that anyone looking to upgrade out of the Drake for missions give the Tengu serious consideration.

Wednesday, 3 August 2011

Sit, Stay... Good logi (AAR)

  Another roam in my scimitar and while I had fun again I'll admit that switching to a logistical ship mind set can be a bit tough sometimes.  I'm not that interested in being in a DPS boat and turning the enemy's ship into a modern art sculpture.  I much prefer scouting, moving around cloaked to setup a fleet warp to have proper range, utilize EW mods to tactically shape the battlefield, or apply reps when needed.  Basically I enjoy being a combat multiplier instead of a line dog.

Tuesday, 2 August 2011

Nowhwere Bound

  Thrusters flared soft blue light as the ship undocked from the station.  The 'Nowhere Bound' slipped silently into space on yet another mission at the Captains behest.  Sphen Larson, CPT, had been commanding one ship or another for the past 20 years.  Medium height, blond hair turning gray, solid, and with a face that inspired confidence in all those around him.  The man was a natural born leader and his tenacity, foresight, and grounded values had saved his crew countless times.

  Next to him on the bridge was his First Officer.  Lt JG Alan Smith was tall and lean, some said he was built like a greyhound, with short brown hair and the faintest hint of a mustache. He conducted all of his duties with a seriousness that bordered on autism yet most people overlooked his eccentrics simply because he always got results.  Part of his demeanor stemmed from the fact he understood computers better than he did people.

  The cargo hold echoed to the sound of boots moving crisply through aisles of containers.  Warrant Officer Natasha "Ems" Stewart was ensuring the deck hands had secured all of the safety straps and cargo netting.  She was tall for woman, but moved with a feline grace she acquired from years of martial arts practice.  This week her hair was a vibrant purple, her coveralls displayed crisp pleats, and every male eye in the hold followed the sway of her hips when she glided past.  The rumor mill said she once was a model and everyone assumed she quit when she got the scar on the side of her face.  As acting quartermaster she was responsible for all cargo as well acquiring and selling any trade goods that might turn a profit.  In addition she had an engineering degree and assisted with keeping the ship fitted for whatever mission was required.

  Chief engineer Master Sergeant Harold "Fuzz" Peach was finishing his pre-warp checklist and trying to avoid stepping on the cat who insisted it was feeding time.  Cat was welcome company most of the time but right now the priority was ensuring the capacitors were working at optimum capacity.  Fuzz had two passions in life, searching for the universes perfect beer and finding a way to get just a little more performance out of every piece of equipment on his ship.  Average height and build would seem to indicate he'd live a lonely life, but somehow he managed to always have a woman on his arm a few hours after docking at a new station.  Chief couldn't wait to investigate the claims that  a retired Sergeant Major who helped train new recruits at the Federation School in orbit around Dodenvale VIII was making the beer that one last quarter's micro brewing contest for the Sinq Laison region..  The beer was rumored to be almost perfect, and Fuzz was determined to find out for himself.

  Ajax, the ships computer, notified the CPT all quartermaster and engineer checks were complete and the ship was ready for warp.  The CPT confirmed his ship readout was all green and told Lt Smith to engage the warp drive.  A tunnel of light surrounded the Ferox class battlecruiser as it's crew set forth on the first step of a journey that would last a thousand miles.

Monday, 1 August 2011

My First Kiss

Everyone remembers their first kiss.  Mine was with a girl living in a foster home, yeah I know you don't want to hear this.  In Eve the only first that matters is your first kill.  And your first death.  Well here are mine.

Stay away from the cans, he hates the cans!:

Back when I first started the game I would mission/haul on one account and mine with the other.  I'd been jet canning for a few weeks in an out of the way .9 system and finally moved to a .6 for some better ore.  The new system (Poinen) had over 100 people in it consistently but my noobishness didn't realize how bad of an idea jet canning is in a busy system.

So I'm happily jet canning in my new system when all of a sudden my container box disappears from my miners screen.  What the trickery is this?  I checked the overview and a yellow can is sitting where my white can once was and a Caldari Navy Hookbill (I had to look it up as I'd never heard of it before) is hovering nearby.  NINJA! THIEF! ARRRGGGHH, PIRATE!.  I immediately docked and grabbed my badger.

Yep, I grabbed my badger.  I just knew I could take the stuff out of the can and warp off before he could get me.  I didn't think about prelocking, didn't know just what a warp jam did, basically I knew as much about PVP as your typical 13yr old nerd knows about the female anatomy (only what you see and read on a porn site... I mean forum).  So I get my badger lined up, opened the can, scooped the loot and tried to get away.  We all know what happened next.  Shields die, armor dropping, I think fast and jettison cargo so maybe he'll be nice and let me live..nope, the Jerk.  My badger Died in a Fire (TM).

I was literally shaking this whole time.  I get some pretty intense adrenaline rushes from gaming and I was definitely hopped up on Mt. Dew and ready to go spider monkey on someone from all the adrenaline I had pumping in my veins.  So my badger died and I headed back to my station to figure out what to do next.  Next was waiting about 20mins for my hands to stop shaking while I figured out the multiple things I did wrong, on the forums of course.

The only smart thing about the whole incident was I didn't use my mining barge drones to help.  My retriever was still safely mining while the hookbill stayed on grid for more easy kills.  In the end I waited out my aggression timer and determined I needed to figure out some kind of PVP ship to have on hand in case this happened again.

 Days go by and I get smarter about mining.  I realize that the only way jetcaning would work would be to have a third account for hauling so my mission runner could go about his business.  So I make a minnie (I was told mammoth's get targeted less than itty's) and quickly had a hauler alt.  Soon I've got a Hoarder sitting next to my retriever and I'm raking in the big bucks.

Revenge is best served with AML's:

One day a rifter shows up and is orbiting close.  No biggie.  Surely I'm faster than this guy at opening my can's and moving the ore.  So I get ready and drop the can so I can swiftly transfer the contents with my hauler.  Only for some reason the rifter goes red and my Hoarder blows up.  Great googelymoogely batman.  How did that happen?  I can only assume we both dipped into the can at the same time giving mutual aggression.  This time I was ready though.

Earlier in the day I had put together a great PVP caracal.  Scram, check; web, check; assault missile launchers, check; AB, check; shield buffer, check.  I looked on battleclinic and the forums for help and I was so happy to finally have a PVP bird in case I ever needed it, and the case happened sooner rather than later.

I pulled my mission guy in, swapped ships and warped the caracal on top of my retriever, which was being tightly orbited by the rifter.  I landed, got lock, pointed, webbed and ate his armor like it was mint chocolate chip ice cream.  Yay revenge.

I kept that guy on my watchlist for a very long time, but he eventually gave up when I never, ever dropped a can when he was around.  To this day that is still the only kill mail I have and my only solo kill, but it's one of my favorites.  I killed Zuchini Warrior, who in my mind was a great PVP person, which showed me that I could survive in this game if I really wanted to.

Oh, if you're still interested, my first kiss was to this cute little blonde who so didn't care for me as much as I did for her, but I could feel her lips on mine days later.  We eventually broke up, well she left me, but the memory is something I'll always cherish.  Just like my first Eve kill.