Monday, June 18, 2018

Death By 1000 Cuts -- Wormhole Edition

AAR: Colorful RP fan fiction of a Paladin gank. I know I'm a super nerd, but sometimes I just like going over the top on stuff. Its my blog, try and stop me.

TLDR: hyperlink

 The immortal Captain Aurum paced the spacious bridge of his Paladin class Marauder. He was getting more anxious by the second. It was taking too long, he silently cursed himself. Were the reports of combat probes true? When he commanded his first officer to verify the report, the first officer simply said, 'They are gone now, may have been a fluke". Incompetent fool. Gritting his teeth, the Captain communicated his location to fleet at the station, just in case.
   The crew of the Paladin were deep in an uncharted system clearing it of its ancient inhabitants. The mission was simple. Destroy the aliens who resided in this section of space and return. The crew had scanned out a cluster of strange ancient aliens and set about process of extermination and collection. The data clusters collected from the wreckage would fetch a fair amount of ISK on the open market. The aliens, sleepers, as they were referred to, were not without their own defenses. Heavily armored and just as heavily armed would attack any ship that violated what they felt was theirs. The dangers were amplified only because these sleepers resided. They were ruthless, mechanical in thought and action, this made them predictable and within reach of a crafty individual with the guts to go to them and pry their data from their destroyed carcasses.
      To amplify the danger, the targeted sleepers only resided in maelstrom of J-space. A lawless space of isolated star systems only connected to real space through thousands unstable wormholes who's location was as infrequent nature made them impossible to navigate for any great length of time. These J-space star systems were colonized by immortal pilots who enjoyed the isolation and the stealth provided by a space without registered communication. They used this lack of communication between each other to hide, but a rarer few used it to hunt their fellow immortal pilots.
    These hunters, many who followed their own god of chaos they called Bob, were what Captain Aurum feared most. The sleepers were predictable, dangerous to be sure, but predictable. The mind of an immortal hunter, was not. Captain Aurum wasn't without tools for his protection. He had used his extensive knowledge of these random wormhole mechanics to bring its connections to unknown dangerous connections that may harbor these hunters to a critical degree of unsuitability by jumping a specific amount of mass through the connection.  Any ship passing through it, may close the wormhole behind them, effectively trapping that ship on one side permanently, until the twisted maze of connections might take it back to once it came. The trapped ship would be without support and of no threat to Captain Aurum and his paladin. Or so he thought.

    Captain Spear cared not for harvesting the ancient aliens when he approached the wormhole connection.  He had just scanned down just another signature among hundreds that week. All didn't provide what he was desperately seeking.
    Using his covert ops Anethema, he was able to make incredibly quick scans of systems, disregarding useless gas signatures, even less useful sleeper civilization clusters and quickly finding connections to other wormholes. His target wasn't ancient civilizations or even harvesting the vast resources provided in such an isolated section of J-space. He was hunting immortals, just like himself. To offer their brief fantastic explosions to his fickle god, for no other reason than the challenge hunting such an illusive prey could provide.
    Captain Spear had come across something out of the ordinary directly connected to his home system. An incoming connection out of the norm his home system received. A quick view on his NAV computer revealed the wormhole he had just found was highly unstable and critical. Something had done this. Something big had brought this gift from Bob to this unstable state. Opportunity for another offering to Bob may just be on the other side of this wormhole.
    Licking his greasy lips he made a silent inner prayer to his uncaring god of chaos, "May my explosion and offering of blood, please you and bring me fortune". Risk was part of the job and nothing ventured nothing gained some one said. Weighing what maybe a one way trip from his current destination and fleet support. Faith in Bob should never be questioned. His small craft would hardly alter the critical state of this connection to the unknown. He piloted his small one man vessel into the wormhole. Lets take a peek and see what Bob has given me.
     The sound of the shift from one system of J-space to another thundered around him, the connection held. Quickly hitting his 360 directional scan, specifically tuned to find other ships and the wrecks of the sleepers they may be harvesting, reviled evidence of other pilots in the system.
   Smashing down the communication button, "Wrecks on Scan! Paladin times 2, Mobile Tractor times 6, Salvaging Destroyer!" "The connection is critical, get to delta hole in destroyers or smaller!" "Wolf-Rayet Star". The call to his fellow hunters silenced the nonsensical banter typically enjoyed in the off time between kills. This was why the hunters were here, for that sudden burst of adrenaline that only hunting an immortal could provide. Bob had gifted us with a challenge.

     Standing at the private shipyards of the fleet quickly selected the correct ships for the operation. The puzzle was less than simple. The target was Paladin class Marauder, known for its unique ability to temporarily transform itself from a space craft into an immobile weapons platform. Completely immune to electronic counter measures, temporarily providing additional defensive capabilities and making it a tough nut to crack in the best of situations.
   The hunter fleet did have one advantage over the cumbersome marauder, it had speed. With expert piloting a small craft could quickly orbit the battle ship while its tremendous cannons failed to apply damage on such a quick target. The marauder wasn't without options. The battleship had a flights of unmanned drones it could use to out run a small ship attempting this tight orbit maneuver. Though the marauder couldn't track the small craft, the drone could easily. There would be casualties.
    Captain Tota and Captain Saken selected a tactical destroyers, an Amarr confessor and Gallente Haecate. Superb space craft each, with tried and true crew. Their crews needed to be elite to fly the fickle spacecraft capable of transforming itself mid flight into essentially 3 different specialized platforms. Captain Raalei brought a fearsome assault frigate which was designed in the Minmatar ship yards. Minmatar technology was one that favored function over form. How that lunatic Raalei kept that ball of welded metal and bonding cement from coming apart in warp, should be studied. Finally, one Captain Brannigan, who had sacrificed so much to Bob in the past, that he could only accompany us in a Caldari Caracal cruiser. Its missile systems were an asset, but his ships shield defenses would be less than useful in the Wolf-Rayet system. Captain Brennigan didn't care, his crew was expendable, he was immortal!
    The marauder did have one tremendous weakness perhaps ignored by the people who designed it, it was highly susceptible to energy neutralization warfare. The marauder pulled tremendous amounts of power from its critical systems to fire its weapons and repair combat damage. Without power, the marauder was vulnerable. The problem was, nothing in the small group of ships selected for the mission could provide the tremendous energy neutralization needed to cripple the marauder. The call went out for a bold pilot with nothing to lose but his ship. "Bring the Bhaalgorn".

    In the deeper reaches of the Fortizar class Citadel while the fleet was forming, Captain Lomax was walking down a hall toward a ship only a madman would pilot, let alone command. It was necessary for the safety of population of the Citadel to moor some spacecraft in isolated hangers. Often times, cutting edge technology would be a hazard to those around them. This was not the reason for this ships isolation. Its reason for isolation from other crews and staff, were entirely outside the realm of science.
      The final seal broken on the 7th door of the 7th compartment. The smell of death came hissing through the airlock of the hanger. Captain Lomax waited patiently as the hanger door screeched open to reveal a floating battleship hovering in the anti gravity mooring chamber. Its hull drenched in blood, perhaps new, perhaps old, likely both. Looking down to the left of the staircase he saw the blood drained body of some unlucky dock worker still clutching its neck in a vain attempt to claw the blood back into its body. He'd been warned, but often times curiosity for the forbidden draws in scholar and fool alike. Their fate is always the same. 
    Before purchasing this space craft from a station full of ship slavers, this was the only information found. "Named after a child-devouring demon of Amarrian legend, the Bhaalgorn is the pride and joy of the Blood Raider cabal. Though it is known to be based on an Armageddon blueprint, the design's origin remains shrouded in mystery. Those of a superstitious persuasion whisper in the dark of eldritch ceremonies and arcane rituals, but for most people, the practical aspect of the matter will more than suffice: you see one of these blood-red horrors looming on the horizon, it's time to make yourself scarce. (historical reference)
    Inside the spacecraft it was much much worse than its bloody exterior. The stories were true, the ship was powered the same as standard craft its was based on, but something else was at work on this mysterious ship. A dark force, a force not of science but a force of horror. Its crew were cultists and priests of this dark cabal. Their technological understanding of the ships inner workings were only matched by their ritualistic desire to feed the ship and the ship was always hungry. This ship was their outlet to their god, their conduit to the evil which made this space craft special. Captain Lomax didn't care, nothing mattered to him other than pleasing his own god, a god that didn't need blood, that god needed only explosions and if this Bhaalgorn and its evil crew were the explosion called upon, so be it. Captain Lomax was immortal.
     Captain Lomax ignored the smell, stepped over the bodies of the crew, brushed off the drained limbs of the former first officer from the Captains chair and plugged himself in. The executive staff was a mix of clergy, engineers and what could only be described as a doctor specializing in quickly pulling blood from the willing and unwilling alike. The staff was loyal to its Captain, what they did to make the ship work was simply their business. He didn't ask because knowing the answer would only bring madness. The ship undocked and with a thought, he was in warp to connection Delta.

     Captain Spear managed to launch his combat probes off of the directional scan of the Paladin. Then arrange his probes remotely before launching them, narrowing their search pattern to a minimum, with maximum effect and efficiency. The idea was to not spook the target and give target ship cause to run until the fleet was on top of it. One quick warp of the combat probes and the exact location of the marauder was found, Captain Spear quickly recalled his probes seconds later. With a little luck, the target ship wouldn't see them. Captain Spear warped to a location 100k from the last known location of the Marauder. Captain Spear was just kilometers from his fleets target. He gave the command to form up on Delta connection.
    The hunter fleet rendezvous on the critical Delta connection. The traverse would be simple. Jump the small craft through the critical wormhole first, in hopes that these small ships mass would not close the wormhole before the huge Bhaalgorn was able to close the connection with is bulk. All this would be for not if the Delta connection was so critical to only allow just a couple small craft through and close before the battleship could skirt in. Stranding small ships without the support of the battleship only to watch their target leave.
     "Assault Frigate Jump!", the pile of angular metal reached the event horizon and disappeared. The connection remained.  "Destroyers Jump!", both of the larger ships disappeared into the quivering nexus. Still the connection remained. "Cruiser Jump!", the Caracal and its rookie crew approached and disappeared. A collective silence swept over the fleet as the Bhaal waited its turn. Would the connection remain? " YES! Bob wants to see us die this day" Captain Lomax shouted. The Bhaalgorn lumbered through the critical hole and collapsed it behind the battleship. The beast was in, and it was hungry.

    Aboard the Paladin marauder still pacing on the bridge an anxious Captain Aurum was monitoring the destruction of the final sleeper. "Sir! Wolf on directional!". "Hecate, Confessor and"... long pause... " a Caracal?" A look of confusion across his face.
    "Damn it!" Captain Aurum exclaimed, how did they get in this system there are no new connections. One of his subordinates must have failed in their duty to critical mass the connecting wormholes. They insubordinate swine will be punished for this, if we live, they won't for much longer.
    "How long till we can warp?" Captain Aurum screamed. "The siege module is still active sir, we can't move!" responded the NAV station.
     "These tiny craft are no match for the power of a bastioned marauder" he stated with confidence. Then he remembered that intel report he chose to ignore earlier in the day. This was a Wolf-Rayet Star system, a system enhanced by heavy elements, depleted hydrogen and strong strong stellar winds, nonsense to the untrained, but the effect on small weapons would be amplified. Worse, the signature of space craft would be much smaller, making his primary cannons useless vs a small moving target. He knew he was in trouble.
    "Coms, place a call to our support fleet, we need help".

   The smaller craft of the hunters were much faster than the Bhaalgorn and made it to the target long before the battleship arrived. They would need to deactivate the warp drive of the marauder and keep the ship there until the Bhaalgorn could land. Captain ordered his ship to warp to the designated target. His NAV station, which doubled as a butchers table of sorts, was a mess with parts of some kind of creature, hopefully not sentient. The NAV station officer adjusted the destination into the computer and stopped moments before to nibble on a severed finger he had pocketed ealier that day. Making the critical mistake and warping to the incorrect spacial bookmark. 100k from the target.  Captain Lomax thought to himself, "Fool, if he wasn't already damned I'd flay the skin from his bones, if I though he wouldn't enjoy it". "letting him live longer should be his punishment".

   The word "Bhaalgorn" uttered from the first officers mouth had never had the gut wreching effect as strongly as it did on Captain Aurum that day. He'd heard of the legendary spacecraft before, never giving the option of owning or flying the ship a second thought. They didn't specialize in the collection of unthinking ancient aliens, so why should he care. Knowing full well its potential to cripple his marauder he instantly knew it was a threat much greater than the small craft that had disabled his warp drive preventing escape. If this Bhaalgorn does to him, what he fears is possible, he's in greater trouble than previously estimated.
   But why is it so far from him. The deadly Bhaalgorn should be right on top for maximum effect of its weapon systems and energy neutralizing. This was the marauders weakness, these hunters were no fools, but they may have just given me the opportunity for escape.

  The hunter fleet coms were a blaze of combat jargon and screams of g-force pinned crew-mates as they made their tight orbit on the marauder. Pinned to their chairs as they orbit the massive craft. The marauders cannons firing meters behind them as the smaller ships out tracked the cannons.
     "Warp drive disabled!""Marauder targeting me with drones!""Shoot those drones damn it""I've just lost shields"'I've just lost my armor""My ships on fire!!" "Aww shut up Raalie, your ship was on fire before you even got here, you fly Minmatar!""Its on fire more than usual!!"I'm coming apart!" There was glee in his voice as his crew manned their stations for one last time.
    On fire, only structure keeping the ships together, their critical systems pressed beyond their factory specifications by over heating the pilots were in the figurative area between reality and Valhalla, their dream of being seen by their god Bob, moments from coming true. That razors edge  where pushing it one way or another means certain death for themselves and their crews. The hunter fleet couldn't be happier.

  Aboard the Paladin there was a different outlook. One of desperation crept over the crew. The crew knew what to do, but events were closer to having a grim outcome more than positive. Captain Aurum had one last trick up his sleeve. He had installed a weapon system rarely used outside of very specialized instances. A point-blank area-of-effect weapon, when fired doing damage to everything in a very short radius. These small ships orbiting and avoiding his cannons would either need to break off their assault or be destroyed. Either outcome would be fine in his book. Hunter scum.
   The only draw back of this weapon system was the tremendous power it took to activate. It was worth it for the chance to escape.
   Wave after way erupted from the point-blank weapon system, he was damaging something at first, but the small craft still maintained the tight orbit needed to disable his warp systems.
   The tactical officer conveyed to Captain Aurum, "We were having effect at first but the attackers have altered their tight orbit to outside our point-blank fire effect."
    "Blast! where's that support fleet !!!?!" Captain Aurum shouted. Silence came over the coms system.
    A reluctant engineer eyed the Captain before giving his report. "Sir," swallowing hard "the Bhaalgorn has begun applying its heavy energy neutralizers". Silence fell over the bridge.

   After the slow creep from the wrong NAV point to the target, the Bhaalgorn was finally doing what it was designed to do, drain. The command was given to begin energy neutralizing the marauder. The crew chanted and begun unspeakable rituals that seemed to share the same rhythm as the energy weapon systems. The darkness kept within this ship was awakening and being unleashed on the marauder. Screams of the stock of slaves could be heard as they gave their lives to the rituals. In areas of the ship that didn't have sufficient slaves, crew men and women gleefully injected themselves with blood draining needles and ejection tanks, watching as their own life force was sprayed across the weapon systems. Happily serving the ship and their cabal.
   Captain Lomax sent over the coms "Marauder empty". The marauders precious energy systems was as dry as the slaves that powered the weapons that took them. Captain Lomax grinning, looked to his attentive tactical officer who wasn't grinning back.
    "Sir, the murauders support fleet has been spotted". Captain Lomax relayed the information to the fleet. "Guadian x3, Pontifex, Proteus , Sacrilege, Ashimmu,..... Bhaalgorn". The color fled from his face.
   "OVER HEAT EVERYTHING!!" Captain Tota shouted. Cannons hissed, capacitors ruptured in a desperate attempt to cause the explosion they all so desperately came to create, but would it be enough?

     The bridge of the Paladin marauder were on fire. Bodies of crew lying all around, but still the marauders held together. Its defenses starved of power and unable to operate from the Bhaalgorns energy draining weapons. The rescue fleet was in warp and moments from assisting them.

With blood trickling out of the corner of the first officers mouth, giving his last report. "Sir, there isn't any power left, the fleet is landing in moments". "But the bastion module is locked in place, the rescue fleet can't repair our systems with it on, what do we do?!"

Captain Aurum stood up from his chair and calmly walked to his personal escape pod. "Well, you die".
    Suddenly the automatic ejections system took over and shunted the Captain violently into the egg shaped ejection pod. His spaced crew of thousands, floating lifelessly in the wreckage around him.

Blood for Bob.

 A video of the AAR



Monday, May 28, 2018

Into the Abyss 1.0

Hello friends

On Tuesday, May 29th 2018 CCP is going to release more actual content to the game. YAY right?
Welllll, its got some goods and bads of course. Here's my take on the new stuff from a day of screaming at my computer screen.

My experience.

So on the 27th (yesterday) I figured I'd log on to Singularity (test server) and try out some of the new stuff. I didn't exactly know where to start so I did what a good boy should and actually read the patch notes.

These new instances begin with these little items you find in Data sites. Well, suppose to find in data sites. I don't know if they are rare as hell or CCP dropped the ball but I spent about 2 hours in my scanning ship flying around the test server hacking data sites and found 0. I hope CCP doesn't do what they did with Ghost sites and make these little nuggets as rare as hens teeth. Because after doing, not making this up, 8 data sites, I didn't find a single 'filament'.

That sucked.

Well, I thought to myself, 'Spear old boy, you should just go to the Null market and see if anyone is selling them', yea well they are, all of them, for 100.00 isk. ... /sigh...

So these little filaments are broken down into 5 levels of difficulty and 5 different flavors of 'bonuss' and 'penalty'. They work exactly like Wspace, but instead of expecting you to know what effect you're in, it just tells you with a little buff/de-buff symbol above your capacitor. Thats nice. :)

I suspect going forward, one type of effect filament item would be easier to run than others, thus the demand for those filaments would be greater. Where the really awful effect ones, would be cheaper.

Heres how the filaments work.

You get your cruiser, as far as I know right now, you must use a cruiser or smaller for these, fly to a spot in space away from other celestial ( just made a safe) and right click "Activate". Why you would try and use something smaller, I can't guess, maybe you just like punishment.

Once the filament is activated, a little window pops up with some warnings and a "are you sure" message. At the bottom is a little 'jump' button, which you push and whoosh, you are taken away to a a new area.

You're aren't in 'local anymore, or I don't think you are, I didn't confirm if you left local or not, but you are in a section of space with little unreadable squiggles for a name. So maybe you're there, maybe you're not. We should look into that, because it might be a cool way to hide a fleet by carrying these lv1 1 things with you on ops and teleporting your fleet out of local for 20 minutes.

I'll just say that the little Abyss area is Gorgeous! Its a maelstrom of rocks, ice, pointy bits, lighting, clouds.. all floating around with different colors. Very pretty. If you don't do anything, fly in there on a cheap one and just experience the graphic layers, it would be worth your pod.

Yes, I said pod.

If you die in these, you're podded. The rats pod you and you can't escape them once you've started. The entire event is timed 20:00. Rats take off and just dodge you to burn up time, dead. Can't dps frigs well because of your larger weapon system, dead. Can't break their reps because you have frig specific damage types.. dead. podded..

Someone said that this was intended for someone to just 'do as a quick thing' on a lunch break. HAHHAHAHA HAHHAHAHAH <-- sarcastic laugh.

Sure, maybe you could hop into your cruiser and knock out a level 1 on a lunch break. But a level 3 or higher, you better have put in your time on the test server to figure out what works with each combination of rats and effects.

The rats as far as I can tell are like sleeper rats, in that they shoot omni damage type and will kite your ass if they feel thats the best way to deal with you. They will kite your drones from you, which is nice... I placed two medium drones on a frig rat and watched as it turned around and ended up 30 from me. Its friends still pounding away on me.

The rats don't seem to follow the typical agro control methods we enjoy in other parts of space. they're smart, and very trolly. Its almost like they know the whole thing is timed and when they are down to 2 frigs about to die and you can go to the next room. The two frigs just fly off, they saw what you did to their friends, know you're going to explode in 5 minutes, so they just make your life that much more miserable before dying.

Worse, I'm fairly sure each room changes based on your fit or the weapon system you use. Perhaps I'm giving the AI more credit than is due, but I swear, if I did great in one room with my drone weapon systems, the next was tailored to do terrible vs my weapon system. After doing about 10 lvl 3s and dying 9 times out of 10... I could swear the game was hacking.

Not only that, but you're podded each time you fail.

The vibe I get from this isn't one of 'casual game play on a lunch break', the vibe I got is exactly like Hard Core mode in Diablo or POE. There is a sword of Damocles hovering over your balls, waiting for you to lose connection from a internet hiccup or the particular combination of resistance/room effects and NPC tower AOE that just places your scrotum exactly where it wants you, and drops the sword.

After 7 straight hours of screaming at computer screen about why a rat that died 3 times before with this type of weapon system, simply won't die now ,and watching the clock ticking down before reaching the end and exploding I gave up and tried to cure cancer in my basement with a toaster and box of rocks. Punishing, is close to the word I'm looking for, but masochistic (not the fun kind) is really more at the heart.

I did get to loot each 'can' in each room though, which I think makes the experience worse for me. See if the loot was in the final room only, you wouldn't really know what you lost if you failed, but the fact that you can hold the loot in your hot little cargo hold and know you can't take it out of the Abyss if you fail.. Then DYING with the potential loot in your cargo hold and seeing it go from gotten to lost... yea, that's seems to raise the stakes that much higher and make the experience that much more punishing when you fail it.

After as much time, ships and, pods as I spent on the test center, I have abandoned any hope of doing these on release. No loot is worth this abuse.

I'm rich enough to pay other people to punish themselves with this shit.

Friday, May 4, 2018

Battle of the Serengeti

As you all maybe aware, I'm back playing EVE and having fun with a great crew in Wspace.

Some of my most memorable fights are desperate small gang fights that involve both sides reshipping, warping out, dying, putting mass on holes, using wormhole mechanics to your advantage and just going totally nuts like ship loss isn't a thing!

Though my least read posts are always my battle reports, they are by far my favorite to write... so if you don't like stupid PVP don't bother reading any further.

Battle of the Serengeti

I call it this because of the mild shit talking I did while I was trying to get a fight with a newly rolled static connection.

Its early EST and I'm the only one on other than some guy that was just logged in long enough to do PI.

I jump my cloaky legion into the newly rolled hole and see a Rorq on scan. Now I can't hope to solo one of those, even if I did ping, my EUTZ / AM EST TZ is minor at best. So, I do what any person looking for a hopeless fight would do, ship my alt into an Incursus and fly around their wormhole trying to start shit.

While I'm flying around their hole, I see a Loki and Cheetah jump from their static connection. They drop probes and quickly find our K162 to their home. In random hopes of possibly killing a Loki with my incursus and scout legion, I proceed to bait on our K162 with the incusus. Maybe they didn't see the Legion, but I'll take a T3 scout vs T3 scout fight with incursus assist any day of the week.

They don't bite, they just jump the Cheetah into our home, so I figure I'll chase with the Incursus.

This is the local chat after I miss the decloak.

NOTE: I was kind of punchy, hadn't had my coffee yet and was feeling weird.

[ 2018.05.04 14:37:35 ] Sir Lomax > the deadly incursus stalks its prey...
[ 2018.05.04 14:38:49 ] Sir Lomax > its prey, completely confused by the incursus's use of speed and cunning, hides.. doesn't drop probes, yet watchs.. and waits.. for the axe to fall...
[ 2018.05.04 14:39:57 ] Sir Lomax > is it a solo hunter? or does it have a pack of deadly fellow incursus to assist in the kill, only an excessive amount of time will tell
[ 2018.05.04 14:40:43 ] Sir Lomax > will its loki pack mate assist? or leave it to die on the sarengetteee?
[ 2018.05.04 14:43:15 ] Sir Lomax > Confused by its preys lack of movement or action the deadly incursus retires to its den
[ 2018.05.04 14:48:10 ] Hisoka Abre-Kai > So.  Ya gonna tell stories all day, or actually come shoot at something with that frig?
[ 2018.05.04 14:48:53 ] Sir Lomax > :) i like stories haha

I saw a dare devil jump into our home while watching with my cloaked Legion. I figure what the heck, and warped there with my Enyo.. I honestly wasn't awake enough to know that wasn't my Incusus anymore, I brought the Daredevil into structure and it jumped out.

Realizing that my incursus shouldn't be doing as much damage as that, I looked again, and realized, wait I'm in an Enyo! O ffs... then I reshiped back to the incursus and warped back to the hole.

I'm not kidding, I honestly felt I was in the incursus the hole time. I think this is what schizophrenia feels like.

O well, reset.

I see on Dscan a malediction warping in, then a confessor... Sure I can take that! Its an Incursus after all!!

I announce in local that I see the confessor.

[ 2018.05.04 14:55:06 ] Sir Lomax > oohh.. a confessor, that looks spicy :)
[ 2018.05.04 14:55:13 ] Sir Lomax > 1v1?
[ 2018.05.04 14:55:19 ] Sir Lomax > incursus vs confessor?
[ 2018.05.04 14:55:57 ] Sir Lomax > but who will jump into who.. does the confessor falter?

The confessor just sat there for a bit, not wanting to be the first to jump in, but I guess he was waiting on the malediction to tackle me first, because the malediction jumped in first. I just ignored it. I got reps and he's got shit dps.

Malediction points me.. Confessor jumps...Uncloaks and I just turn on the old afterburner, scram web and orbit like a boss.

I'm tanking both just fine, but its grinding on and on.. the Confessor knows hes screwed when he clearly sees hes applying little to no DPS. We are both on the hole, so it was going to be dual side fight anyway.

I got cocky:

[ 2018.05.04 14:58:25 ] Sir Lomax > whats tracking... how does it work?

But wait.. a second confessor warps to the other side of the hole. I guess he didn't want to lose a fight 2v1 in a confessor vs a T1 frig.

He gets low and jumps back into his home. Figuring that any kind honor fight was ignored at this point, I uncloaked the legion. I hold cloak on the incursus till the confessor uncloaks (he did jump first afterall) he uncloaks.. I point him in the Incursus, and get blapped into nothingness by the new confessor.

Lost the Incursus :(

[ 2018.05.04 15:00:32 ] EVE System > Channel changed to Local : J130039
[ 2018.05.04 15:02:06 ] Hisoka Abre-Kai > Oops

But I got the confessor!

So.. who oopsed who.. SIR!

 Now the Loki shows up.. at this time one of my corp mates joins voice coms. I'm holding my own just fine while I reship my Incusus pilot.

What happens next is the most chaotic 45 minute fight over a C5 connection I've ever been apart of.

Ships warping out.. ships blowing up.. me reshipping, them reshipping...  drones everywhere.. pandemonium in the streets, cats and dogs living together... END OF THE WORLD Type shit.

Naww.. but the battle report is slightly hilarious.

Yes I flew all those ships at once, I'm THAT good.... (reshipping occurred)

I'm flying a solo rep bhaal, supported by god only knows what.. jumping back and forth from hole fighting vs 2 Armageddons, multiple dictors, loki and they had a wolf rayite star effect Cerb/Caracal death camp firing squad on the other side of the hole...OMG they did so much damage in that hole, but we kept chasing each other back and forth into structure.

It was bananas.. !!!

Some of the kills...losses.

Kill Machariel

Kill Loki

Kill Proteus

Kill  Flycatcher

Loss HEE-La

Now.. the reason I lost that HEE-La is because I jumped into there not realizing it was a Wolf Ryate Star effect.. which vs.. that firing squad of small weapons and my lack of real shield... I died in a fire while only 10 seconds on my Polarizing timer remained.

To be totally honest, every loss the other guys sustained was entirely because they fucked up on their polarization timers. They chased when they shouldn't have, they over committed when they didn't need to..Good on them for bringing the fight for so long, mad tip of the hat to them.

Wormhole mechanics are the great equalizer in Wspace.

All in all, it was a great set of engagements that used up every single drop of mass on that wormhole connection. Nonstop fighting that ended with us having a trapped Mach stuck on our side.

No quarter was given..  None was asked:)

Friday, April 20, 2018

Hello Friends, I'm Not Dead

 What  a relief right?

Now that we got the obvious out of the way let me give you an update.

I've started playing EVE again and I'm intentionally trying to go easy on it. I'm trying not to make the mistakes I've made in the past when I've tried to come back and failed.

Story time.

I'm a salty vet but recognizing that you are salty is the first step to rehabilitation. I posted in the /r/EVEJOBs subreddit that I was a vet looking for a fresh perspective and wormhole space. I was quickly petitioned by multiple offers but my one caveat to joining this new corp was that it had a minimum amount of people on coms at all times.

This may sound braggadocios but I can say I've done most everything in EVE that I care to do. I've done it in every way that I care to do it. This kind of experience I've found has lead me down a path toward boredom and burn out. The problem isn't the game, its me and how I look at the game its tools.

Take voice coms for example; Discord is superior in most ways and free. Its become the standard for gaming communication and left TS/Mumble and Ventrillo in the dust. Of course thats just my opinion, to which I wouldn't like being a part of those voice com servers because I find them inferior.

The above statement is how I view nearly all things in EVE. I know about the options and I am happy with what I like. This can be very limiting and boring. I recognize this and I'm trying to fix it.

There for, when I entered into this new corp I tried my damnedest to not have preconceived notions about how they do things. They use Team Speak, I don't know why, I didn't ask.. and better yet, I didn't try and change their minds to the way I'm accustom to doing things.

Fresh perspective.

I just jumped into their coms and started talking like I was excited to play the game.

I can tell you that its provided me some area of growth and challenges that I thought I would never need to overcome again.

Take wormhole chain mapping, the way they do it, makes total sense, when someone takes 30 minutes to explain it to you. Its tuff to learn and is antiquated as hell. Its not efficient, its not how anyone I've ever heard of does it, and better yet. Brace yourself.. they don't use a wormhole mapping software. Thats like driving across the country without using a map.When I first heard it, I thought these people were absolutely out of their minds. I know you may be interested how that can be possible so I'll do my best to describe it.

Mapping a chain without a map:

Lets say we have a C4 wormhole. Lets name it Mike.Mike has 2 static connections. In the corp bookmarking system, we will call them A and B.  So the Static connections to Mike are labeled like this.

W A H900 C5 YUX. Exactly like that.

The first letter W signals 'Wormhole".

The letter A signals its the A static, which is always the same from our hole.

The following H900 represents the type of connection it is between wormholes. H900 would be a C5.

The YUX is the spacial signature you get from your probe scans.

Now the other side of the wormhole bookmark looks like this.

W A Back K162 ITI Exactly like that.

Same as before, but the BACK is the important part. Because all the following wormholes will have an additional random (somewhat) letter attached to them which will make those holes appear below the W A BACK in the corp bookmark drop down.

For example a connecting high sec in the A static would look like this.

W AH D126 IFF Exactly like that.

The AH, is A hole H connection. H is a reserved letter used only for high sec connections.

Crazy right?

So if you want to know where a high sec connection is and you're in high sec wanting to come back in, you simply look through your corp bookmarks for the connection that is in Kspace with "Back" in the name. Then its just a matter of following the "back"s  to the home.

No map needed.

I thought this system would go to shit when I needed help with a target down a chain.

All I need to do is post where I am in coms or in Fleet with  "I'm at  ATKOB  and I need help".

This translates that I'm 5 jumps down the chain and anyone that would be flying to assist, simply flys from one wormhole to the next by going  to W A... then W AT.. then W ATK then W ATKO then WATKB.


Its slightly ingenious by really hard to visualize and teach new people. I would never had that experience had I had preconceived notions about what way things needed to be done based on what I know works already.

This is just one thing my new corp does thats out of the ordinary. They also have some very interesting ways of doing nearly everything that I find endearing. I'm not going to go into all of them at this time, just know that I hold my tongue on a great many things.I let them discover and fail themselves because thats part of the fun. If I step in and try to control everything I'm just going to get burned out again.

I could be a stick in the mud and tell them stuff won't work. I could tell them the "better way" of doing stuff, but fuck that, I want to experience EVE again!!

... O and they let me fly a assault frig all the time, which I think is awesome!!! Eventually they're get frustarted with me and tell me to stop, but right now.. I'm manually piloting vs larger ships while they pick up the slack with DPS.

I'm having a good time, if you can tell.

Thursday, October 26, 2017

Resource Wars - How To

EVE Resource Wars In Game Activity

Hello space friends I just discovered how do the new "Resource Wars" after trying a few different times and doing it wrong.

I wanted to share what I've found, so you hopefully won't make the same mistakes I did.

1st: What are EVE Resource Wars?

It seems from my brief attempts at doing these, its like speed mining without keeping the ore you mine. I know it sounds crazy, tell me, I've done 7 of them so far. But they are kind of fun.

The activity isn't without reward, its just ... different... which IMO is good. EVE needs different activities to break up the click and wait which  has been mining. Its interactive, its not in the same star system hour after hour and its quick. Well, the ones I did were quick, I'm sure the harder ones aren't as fast.

2nd: Where can I find this amazing activity?

"The Agency" button. Its this little button I never used, or knew existed. You can find it on your task bar and it seems to work like that old external Agent site used to. You can find the old school agents with it, asteroids belts, anoms all sorts of stuff we old timers just saw on our overview.

With in it, there is a drop down that says "Resource Wars". They are broken up into levels that are based off a faction relationship with some corp. Before I started this my standing with that corp was 0, but with my connections skill or which ever skill gives you free points, I was able to do Level 2's without even doing 1s.

It looks like this.

This is what it looks like if you're in the correct ship and have the correct amount of faction. If you don't have the right about, or someone in your fleet doesn't have the right amount that pilot can't get past the entry warp gate. So before you take your space friend (or in my case 2 other characters) make sure everyone is in the correct ship and has faction to enter.

Some information that threw me on this, which perhaps I'm just dense but seriously I didn't know how mining really worked... I couldn't figure out from the description if I was the one hauling the ore or not. I kid you not I tried fly to one with a hauler, thinking I had to haul 10,000 units. I was honestly perplexed trying to figure out if I had to warp out of the site, drop off the rocks for my hauler which couldn't enter, then warp back again...

 Like that description at the top was 'events I'm about to experience' would happen like this.

 The hauler is an NPC hauler, all you as a pilot need to do is fly there, mine 10,000 units and drop them in the hauler, which for this mission is an NPC Orca that is waiting for you to drop ore into.

Took me a little while to figure that out.

3rd: What kind of ship do I need?

There is a list of frigs on the 'mission window' that you can bring. All of them are T1 frig, no faction.

Well I went in with what I could fly with 3 pilots (I triple boxed it) flying this exact fit.


Capacitor Flux Coil II

Small Shield Booster II
EM Ward Field II
Adaptive Invulnerability Field II

Miner II
Miner II

Small Capacitor Control Circuit I
Small Capacitor Control Circuit I
Small Capacitor Control Circuit I

Hobgoblin II x2

 This was a bit overkill IMO. I could have done the mission with 2 of these. The trick is to not let your miner II's totally cycle. I'm sure this is some sort of mining tech I never knew, but I guess the rocks are very small and a full cycle of these miner IIs is more than is needed to destroy the rocks.

You could I'm sure do this with T1 versions of this fit, if your quick. You do need to kill the rats, so I think that would be a challenge with just 1 venture.  The rats I was fighting were fit with a web, so you may have trouble doing this site solo even in a blingged out Venture. The web would make it hard to mine 10,000 ore then drop it off before the timer expired. Not only that, but darn near impossible to kill 2 rats with a single venture.

4th:  Once I'm in the system where do I go?

Well if your familiar with the Blood Raider Celestial Beacons, these work very similarly. They are right there on your overview.

The timer doesn't seem to start till you land. At which point this guy pops up and gives you a scary message.

He wants you to destroy the pirates. Add the pirates to your overview...

KEY Overview Point!

Make sure this Ore type is on your overview, do this before you start, or you won't see the dumb rocks. Failed one of these missions because I couldn't figure out WTF he was talking about. Mine rocks? what rocks?!?

Empire Asteroids

There is a little timer on the left that tells you whats left to be done and there is a ticking timer which is super annoying if you let it get below 1:00. (Ive never head that before in EVE and I thought I was losing my mind)

Once the Orca is filled and the pirates are dead.

You are rewarded with all the left over rocks being deleted from your cargo and this message.Which personally I thought was dumb. The "ACCEPT" button is actually something you need to press. Like I wouldn't accept it.. "O no don't give me money and faction.. " :P Even if I didn't want it, wouldn't a "DENY" button next to it make more sense? Seems silly to have just 1 button. 

Anyway... You're also rewarded with what I thought was a fairly hefty chunk of faction points. Which for me in Amarr is awesome. You used to need to do level 1 missions in low sec in order to not be killed by Amarr and raise your faction standing. After about 40 of those I wanted to jump out a window.This is way better.. because if that kid loses her doll one more time.. i sware.. so help me.

After about 7 of these with my 3 characters my Amarr faction was a net of 0.184 which is awesome!

I haven't a clue what the LP is used for I guess I'll eventually figure it out, but I wanted to share some pitfalls I came across while trying this thing.

My opinion on this as an activity in EVE.

I'm going to be totally honest, I'm not a miner. The activity for me has always been just boring. IMO this Resource Wars is what mining should have always been. Its interactive, it makes you think, it keeps you engaged and can't be done by a 5 year old. (not making that up, I had my daughter when she was 5 mine, even she got bored)

Great job CCP. You keep adding stuff like this and I might stop being so critical of you.

(pff who am I kidding, I love to hate you)  <3

Friday, August 18, 2017

The Transition to Vampiric Bitter Vet

 TLDR: Newbie makes newbie mistakes, I semi restrain myself from destroying him utterly, or have I?

Perhaps its the natural evolution of vet-dom, but I wasn't always like this. I've come to realize, that I'm the worst kind of bitter vet. The kind of vet that feeds like a vampire off of the life force of newbies.

In the past, I've enjoyed myself observing my fellow low experienced players like a kind of Jane Goodall, cataloging the behavior of the Mountain Gorillas and their primitive use of tools. Giggling at the similarities and discoveries they make, hopping to reach that place in our evolutionary past and possibly learn something once forgotten.

Naw, fuck that.

Instead of peacefully observing the primitives in their natural habitat, I've found a level of amusement tormenting them in creative ways.

Here we begin the tale of Eve-iL Shenanigans a player I met in Military Wormholers. MW are a collection of vets and newbies trying to do what they can to play this great game called EVE. 

ES as I'll refer to him is no different than you and I except he doesn't fully understand the game to the level we do. He hasn't had the hope and wonder of EVE brutally crushed out of him. He thinks the game is actually a sandbox and simply creativity is the only thing stopping him from succeeding, what a sucker. I'm kidding, hes a nice enough guy, just slightly naive. 

Military wormholers, like other newish wormhole corps is constantly trying to improve its PVP doctrine. They even elected a PVP fitting coordinator, who proceeded to send email after email about what ships he thought we all should bring in to make a cohesive group.  

Along comes ES and his hauling services. His dream, as best as I can figure out, is making an EVE business of sorts by hauling equipment to the wormhole from Kspace at the ever fluctuating rate between 5 and 10%.  So he made us a google doc with complex instructions on how to list the items we need that he could eventually haul in. Adorable right?

I inadvertently at first and later overtly explained to him that everyone worth their salt in Wspace has their own means of hauling shit in and out of the wormhole. But he wasn't having it, he was set on being our corps main go to connection to the distant Kspace market place. Not wanting to crush his hopes and dreams with the realities of this game, I played along. 

Shortly after the PVP doctrine mail went out with 3 ships listed on it, I figured I would use his hauling services and save me some time. I told him, "I'll pay your 10% fee, go ahead and bring me 1 of each ship" have fun, be a space/wormhole hauler. 

He then explained to me that he didn't have the capital for all the space ships on the list. He also mentioned to me that his hauling business wasn't taking off the way he'd hoped. No one was really using it. Not wanting his hopes and dreams to be dashed I broke him off a billion isk. "Bring me change and run along." Thinking I was being tremendously magnanimous with my money and giving this little fellow some business he was striving for. He then begins to complain that our current high sec is 20 some jumps from Jita but he could go to Rens and buy everything, but everything would cost more. 

Sigh, I tried to explain to him, thats not my problem. This is your business, you can't charge people more for a hauling service entirely based on how much effort in jumps you were willing to do. After some checking, we both agree that Rens is near to the Jita price on most of the items but the faction mods for the fits will need to come from Jita. 

Shortly after that conversation I discover that he's using his bestower to do the hauling. By the time I figured it out, he was hauling a scimitar that ended up costing me 540 million through high sec in a bestower. I then told him that any 5 million isk catalist could pop him before concord saved his little hauler. He then asks me if it would be OK if he autopilots. To which I responded with NO!

 O well, newbie mistakes, I get it. Surprisingly he managed to make it the entire way with 1 ship.  He sends me the change. 

Now I know this kid didn't make the fits, but I've bought and flown many scimitars and none of them really ever cost me more than 250, who faction fits a roaming scimi?! O well... 

Fast forward to last night. The conversation is happening in coms about this guy trying to figure out how to run a market in our wormhole. Why not simply fit a market hub in fort? Well the only one who wants a market is the newbie. He's still trying to figure out how he's going to get his 5 to 10 percent from the market hub if its installed. He's doing his best to get out of paying for the fuel it costs to run the hub, complaining that the % that he makes would never pay for the fuel, this is going back and forth for some time. I get bored of the conversation I just fly out and buy it along with as much fuel as I can carry. 

I'm not making this part up, when I was about to head back with my 1 billion isk market hub, he says on coms "Would you like me to haul it for you?" I damn near spit out my drink. 

Now the bitter vet in me said something not very nice to him and for that I was sorry. "did you just hear me key up the mic and say nothing? That was me struggling to say something other than go fuck yourself" Those weren't my exact words, but it something to that effect. 

He disconnects from coms. 

Realizing that instant I just wrecked a newbie and possibly a future EVE player I instantly felt bad.  But in that instant of feeling bad and potentially crushing the dreams, the vampire EVE Vet takes over. It hit me... Why don't I just log in my trading alt who can field 200+ orders? I could undercut him by 1 isk forever, I giggle to myself and realize how terrible that would be to do to my fellow player. He would never sell a thing, meanwhile I rule the market with my alt, giggling to myself, driven to log in day after day for the only reason being to undercut this poor son of a bitch...forever!

Then I came to the realization that I would need to plex that market account to turn it on and pay for a market that I would only be using to torment a single player, day after day. 

Think of the cost. I 'd have to buy every item he wanted to sell, bring it in the wormhole, then sell it by undercutting whatever price he might have made at the time. I'd pay for the upkeep fuel, the initial module cost and the plex cost to keep the market character account running. 

And I actually did the math.. I had the money to keep it up for months! I could play exclusively to just crush the hopes and dreams of this 1 would-be corp hauler marketeer. 

I salivated in delight with the thought of the delicious tears he would generate. It gave me renewed spring in my step. How diabolical have I become?! 

Not being totally drunk on the future of destroying a newbie, I come to my senses. 

I figure the best way to satisfy my sadism was to place all the parts of the ship he initially hauled in for me on the market, at 20% mark up. 

No sense not turning a profit. 


Monday, July 24, 2017

J155616 - Baiting Bait

Its nice to know that even years later, people that you've enjoyed spending time with still manage to find you at just the right time.

Since my last post I've been trying to get fights from the people of J155616. I think the main active corp in the hole is named "Unreasonable Bastards" with a sub feeder corp called "Reasonable Bastards". I don't know if they some how own the hole or are renting it or its an alt corp, I honestly haven't figured it out yet. There a lot of corp names in this hole. One group owns the POCOs, one owns the Fortizar another owns a Astrahus.. Its crazy. Honestly it doesn't matter as long as they fight.

In the past week or so I've moved into target (J155616) multiple alts and I'm up to 3 active accounts deep into this venture. First I started with some fun and tried to dual box two sniper (Rapid HML) ravens. I was going to go bigger, but I'm still just getting back into the game right now and don't really want to commit too much.

My targets didn't disappoint and brought the heat. I was streaming it and shared the stream with my targets, because fuck it, why not?

They were able to bring a good fight, but sadly outmatched me with a really good warp in.

RIP one sniper raven. The goal of that ship was to keep jumping around and pew off cruiser sized targets. Sadly, they only brought other battleships and my ravens were very cap sensitive.  Once they got that warp in and landed at 0 on me, I failed to MJD to safety in an effort to keep my two dual box ships together.

After I blew up, they tried to trap me out of the wormhole by bubbling the high sec hole. I was going to come back with more ships and fight, but it seemed they didn't really want me there with them in the first place.

The following days I attempted to get their attention by shooting at one of the POCOs with two bombers. On the sly I kept a cloaky legion waiting to jump on whatever their response would be.

Only one guy responded and he bit the bomber bait with a tengu. I was milliseconds from locking him my legion before he popped my stationary bomber.

That would have been a great fight, but he wasn't having it and ran. The next thing that happened made me slightly sad. The tengu pilot logged in a Nid. /sigh

Who brings a carrier to a fight in a C2?!?!

Well, looks like the fun police arrived.

I spend the next few nights doing the best I could to scan out holes, jump on targets, but looks like with me living in their hole, they just aren't that active right now. Kind of a shame, someone brings snacks to your house and you don't open the door :(.

Tonight tho...

 I'm in target hole with a cloaky Legion, bomber and a falcon. I notice two different groups using the high sec connection. One a group called "The clown car" and the other "A band apart." (don't forget the dot). Two groups not connected with the people who live in target. 3 potential targets! WEEE. 

I drop a drag bubble from one of the connecting holes to the high sec. Sadly nothing really amazing happens, some interceptors saw me before I was able to make anything with the camp. The good part is, I managed to annoy both "the clown car" "a band apart" at the same time.

I watch the connecting holes a little longer and eventually commit to attacking a lone hauler belonging to a band apart. It was bait, I knew it when I attacked it, but never not bite AMIRTE!?!

Onyx drops along with a Sac. and I barely make it out with my ship. YAY!

Still watching all connecting holes with my characters. Clown car and a band apart begin fighting in clown cars home hole. I watch about 7 ships belonging to a band apart come and go from clown cars home. Not wanting to be left out, I mention the high sec connection location to a friend named Shaded Rose I knew from SUSU 2.0.

 He brings a fleet to the high sec :) and proceeds to jump into target with a scout, mapping out all the holes. I share with him the sig names all the parties are using and figure I could  get something going.

Now, I'm positive that clown car and a band apart know about my legion because of the failed gank attempts earlier. Good time for me to reveal myself ! Sure enough, I jump into "A band aparts" home hole only to find they are trying to roll with a raven.

I lock it up with the cloaky legion and it scram/webs me. O dear its a tarp! I see on D scan. HFI and sleipniers...

I tell Shaded bring the fleet... O DEAR its a trap of a trap.. DOUBLE TRAP! Shaded brings the fleet from high sec and warps to A Band Aparts home hole.. Murder happens. Sleip #1 Sleip#2 The bait raven I baited.. :)

I managed to get on that kill and do top damage with my Legion!! yay..

Always nice to have friends outside the friends you are shooting at. Special thanks to Shaded, Doom Gen and love of my EVE life, the Windam Wizard himself, Glyndi!

Sneaky Sneaky.. I know but that's wormholes, you never really know whats going to happen.