Archive for May, 2011

Risk And Ye Shall Recieve :: A Humourous Tale of Ship Replacement

Posted in Against All Authorities, Roaming on May 31, 2011 by Easley Thames

This is a short story about taking a crazy risk to kill someone, losing your ship in exchange, and then miraculously acquiring a replacement for free.

First off, a little background for this tale. I had been roaming the entire day, as is the norm in AAA, on a MVN-lead marathon roam that stopped periodically in GE- for a short breaks before heading out time and again.

We roamed Curse, Catch, Provi, and low-sec. The only thing those roams had in common was that, each time we returned home, we took a shot at tackling Brick Squad – the alliance running a Burn Eden style camp in HED. We caught one of their un-probeable Tengus the previous day, but this time we settled for killing lesser ships.

After roaming all day, I decided to jump-clone over to Hemin for a little “me time” in a solo boat. As it turns out, a corp mate was nearby, and so he brought a shield cane to back me up for some near-downtime hunting.

Duo-pvp can be just as much fun as soloing. You gain a degree of backup and synergy, without feeling like you’re in a blob.

Our first target was a Dramiel who kept taunting us from long range. He eventually got too close and I was able to tackle him. Once ensnared, we melted the pesky Dram.

Asa went back to Catch to log off, only to be replaced by Chemicals. Chem only had his Vengence, so when Ushra Khan un-docked a drake with 4 other corp mates in station to back it up, we didn’t fight back initially.

I then hatched a plan. I know I can kill a Drake in about 90 seconds in my neutron mega. I also expected that some of the people in station would log off a few minutes before downtime. We waited until 4 minutes before downtime to have Chemicals undock. The Drake shot at the Vengence.

This time I un-docked with my 7 neutrons and 5 ogre II’s ready to melt the drake. I was 20% into the Drake’s shield when his gang undocked. I was able to finish the Drake with 2 minutes left, which means I sprung the trap too soon. My plan was to let server would go down after the drake died, but before the gang could kill my mega.

I should have had Chemicals undock at the 2 minute mark instead of 4 minutes. However, it looked like I might actually survive. I entered hull just as the server kicked everyone out for downtime. When the server came back up, I learned from my loss mail that I had died almost a minute after downtime. I have no idea if that is petitionable or not, but it doesn’t matter that much to me.

Somehow, Chemicals and I just really wanted to kill this particular drake, and we did it. Even though trading a BS for a BC is not a good way to boost efficiency, somehow I felt great about it.

The next day, I logged onto AAA Teamspeak and asked the regular U.S. timezone crew what was going on. They had been roaming Providence in t1 cruisers daring CVA and friends to fight them (to no avail) while ganking anything they could catch.

I jump cloned to low-sec and caught up with them in a inty. We ended up tackling a Megathron in R3-K. Interestingly, he ejected!

Being that I had lost a mega last night, no one objected when I took his mega for my own. It was fit with trimarks and t2 neutrons, not a standard ratting fit, making it a perfect replacement for the one I had lost.

Talk about a reimbursement policy! Oh, and the poor pilot got podded anyway, despite ejecting.

Over the holiday weekend, I had many great fights, but I thought I’d write about this particular story instead. Somehow, as if my brazen attitude were being rewarded, I came upon a perfect substitute for the mega I lost. That simply amuses me to no end.


Soloing In Curse

Posted in Killboard Stats, Roaming, Solo PvP on May 26, 2011 by Easley Thames

Everyone knows Curse is hot right now. Being my favorite 0.0 region, I couldn’t be happier about the current orgy of violence embroiling AAA’s nearby playground.

People say solo PvP is dead or impossible. For myself at least, that’s definitely not true.

The picture below covers a 6-day span during FINALS, when I had extremely limited time to play. Nearly all of the mails I got in that time were solo kills, as the “involved parties” column indicates.

I had zero eyes/scouts, no gang bonuses, no meta-gaming, no spies, and no blues in the system for these kills. I also didn’t fly anything expensive or pimped-out.

Starting a month ago, I have based out of the Heaven constellation, traveling back to -A- sovereign space only for larger alliance ops or -MVN- roams.

My goals has been to enjoy some casual solo PvP in affordable ships. Fortunately, the locals are usually up for a fight! If not, one only has to travel a couple jumps in any direction to find some trouble.

Despite the risks involved when soloing without any trump cards, I took no losses during the aforementioned 6-day period.

As of today, I still have a total of only 2 ship losses for the past 60 days. There were certainly many close calls though, usually related to escaping a blob after killing one member of their gang.

Here are some more mails from the following week:

There were a few “oh shit” moments over the last two weeks, like when Battlestars un-docked a carrier on me to try and save their Ferox. I consider carriers a bit of a buzz-kill in a small-gang oriented playground.

Repeated cocky displays of capitals by Battlestars in Curse resulted in this hot-drop. I may like to solo, but it doesn’t mean I am without options when people abuse their big toys! The same goes for most senior -MVN- FCs.

Another Battlestars pilot apparently shares his account with a friend. This guy’s ‘friend’ decided to un-dock a Gila that I was able to bump off station and kill in hopes of ratting in system.

I have no idea if this story was just a way for him to save face, or if he really has a friend who rats for him in busy npc 0.0 systems, but when he ‘took over control’ this dialogue commenced:

Going forward, I’ll continue shooting people, taking risks, and trying not to get mowed down by angry blobs.

Most of all, I’ll continue laughing at those who sit docked 23/7 complaining that Eve is only enjoyable as a forum discussion topic.

Recently, there have been lots of emo forum threads bemoaning the nerfs to 0.0 ratting as an income source.

I have always seen making isk as a mere means to an end, and sometimes even a necessary evil, but never something to be pursued as a primary goal in and of itself.

All you really need to have fun in this game is a few cheap ships, decent setups, and the courage to take chances.

That being so, who is really to blame for the fact that people spin ships in stations for hours on end? Is it the people at CCP, the sand-box makers, or the people who never try to make their own fun?

If you ask me, CCP could do a much better job in many areas, but the game is nothing if  not rife with the potential for adventure and conflict.

How to Hook A New Player on Eve :: Make Their First Kill Memorable

Posted in Killboard Stats, Piracy, Roaming on May 25, 2011 by Easley Thames

I was recently asked by a corp mate to take his real-life friend roaming in low-sec. Many new players waste away in high sec, slowly growing bored before quitting, so I was happy to help out.

I met the new player in a 0.5 system where I traded him the fittings I wanted him to use on his Rifter. I set him up with an AB + Scram + Web configuration with a plated armor tank and named autos. His instructions, should he engage anything, were to orbit at 500 meters and apply tackle as best he could.

It became clear early on in the roam that the new pilot had received a crash-course from his friend. He was able to follow orders, set way-points, and generally seemed to understand what I wanted him to do. A few times he jumped gates prematurely, but even supposedly-experienced pilots do this from time to time.

If nothing else, this roam was proof to me that new players do not need to spend nearly as much time in empire “learning Eve” as some people suggest.

It was a Sunday night, and things were quiet early on. I could tell that my tag-along was getting bored after about half an hour, so I started having him run his ship scanner to search for anomalies in each system we entered, while I bombed straight into belts. This isn’t my preferred scouting methodology, but it kept him from spending too much time sitting on gates.

The mildly exciting, but thus-far uneventful trip continued until I scouted out a Proteus in Aldali. The owner of the ship seemed to be out-and-about in system, and there wasn’t much evidence of ratting. I decided to leave and send my new friend to rat in the belts.

Sure enough, the T3 cruiser showed up to take the bait within 2 minutes. He killed my young friend just as I landed, but I was able to apply short-range tackle in my Myrmidon before he could warp off.

The Proteus initially tried to get out of the situation claiming he was a friend of my corporation. Being that he was not set blue, I could care less who he was. He was shooting back the whole time, but his damage was comfortably tanked. I was actually rather disappointed with the performance of his ship, to be honest.

In the end, his Proteus exploded and the excited newbie got a very nice trophy for his first kill mail. His friend was on comms for the fight, and their conversation seems to indicate that his friend will be renewing his subscription. I think the phrase, “holy shit that was awesome” was uttered.

In the aftermath, I let the new player come scoop the loot in a reaper. He was floored to learn that he could earn a million isk from a t2 module. As a true newbie with less than 10 mil, I think the rather disappointing T3 drop (by my standards) was a huge windfall in his eyes.

There is really no substitute for the thrill of a fight. As someone who does this sort of thing daily, most often solo, I don’t get the same level of adrenaline flowing as I did when I started in 2007, but it is the same rush that keeps me playing the game.

I think I did my job pretty well getting this new player introduced to the kind of fun you can have in Eve PvP. I couldn’t have asked for a better target, and I’m just glad I didn’t have to escort the new guy back to high-sec without a fight under his belt.

Finally, thanks to Jack Conn for being such a trooper and tackling a Proteus on his first trip into low-sec. As a new player with zero combat experience, he could easily have screwed it up and let the target get away, but he pinned that expensive thorax down and held it long enough for me to arrive on scene. I couldn’t have done it without ya, Jack.

Tenerifis Stations Fall

Posted in Against All Authorities on May 18, 2011 by Easley Thames

I don’t often blog about structure shooting, but I do attend “official ops” in addition to small gang roams and solo PvP.

Recently I was present for the fall of the last stations in Tenerifis. We were expecting a good fight from White Noise in 46DP and 9-9, but they didn’t jump their fleet into us.

This is actually the second time I have been present for the fall of the South East. The last time was with Atlas, in their golden age.

Some people have asked why AAA is doing this at all. The older AAA members want revenge, pure and simple, even if it only means blowing up a few CSAA’s and taking stations the enemy will no longer want when they move up North.

It has nothing to do with liking the NC or wanting them to win. If anything, messing up the home of DRF invaders only motivates them to permanently move into Northern regions. In that scenario both the DRF and Stain Wagon come out ahead.

I often her people say “what about the reprisal?” Truthfully, AAA has a great attitude. If we get pushed out by a coalition we can’t match we’ll just chill in Stain and Curse. We can retake Catch in due time. Living in NPC 0.0 isn’t any obstacle to finding good pvp on a daily basis, which is at the core of AAA’s very active roaming PvP culture.