Saturday, June 30, 2012

Wormhole Adventures for Two? Follow Me Please…

or~  How My Fearless CEO and The Fleet Cmdr Frelled the Pooch…

I wake in the POS… This hole is so very different from our old home… The C2 had a Red Giant sun and a very different sky with a lot less nebulae. The new hole has a G5 ‘Yellow” sun and has a very pervasive nebula so it’s pretty much like living inside a cloud. It’s very… well, white… ish… all around… everywhere. I loved the weird ruddy red light that was diffused through AI’s Great Wall ‘O Bubbles… if we put up a bubble wall in here it won’t diffuse the light any at all as it feels like we have the ‘verse’s most pervasive indirect lighting… it’s… well… I dunt like it nearly as much as the blue black sky of the old hole…

You take the good with the bad as they say, but… it makes it hard to say dramatic things like, “Out in the cold hard black…” when in truth yer goin “Out in the cold hard creamy sorta tanish taupe…”  meh.

Anyhoo, I awoke in th’ POS and AI & Ty were both on and wanted to go raid the K162/C2 they had scanned down and asplored. I wasn’t really into it, and wanted to work on the POS mods… I had both North and South Defense Positions completed, and the Alpha Ring had all sixteen guns and most of the Ewar up in all eight positions. The Beta Ring was missing three full positions and was very incomplete on the other five… I was, rudely interrupted, by a ganking th’ night afore which was why I kinda had my panties inna bunch to get all the defenses up.

So… they went a raiding and I started workin on the POS defenses. I got all three holes on Beta Ring BM’ed and then anchored both guns in two of em and the last AC in the POS in the last… I was working on the books when the guys were getting near the end of the raid, which had gone very well as they were flyin C3 fitted ships, a Mach and a Kronos… The Mach flat out rocks… I have one and will bring it in ASAP as it is Sheer Deth when well fitted.

The Kronos I found is a very interesting ship. It’s a Gallente Marauder and is especially effective at support suppression and ‘wreckage salvaging’... so AI is doing the ‘tractor everything into a wreck blob’ thing. We tried this before and it worked out well, as we take down a site he tractors all the wrecks into a blob and loots em then I reship, or in this case join em in my Noctis as I have the highest salvaging skills etc., etc. and I land on him and salvage everything... we tried this with me dropping the usual 4x4 Tractor IIs and Salver IIs and refitting all the highs with eight Salvager IIs… this cut the salvage time down appreciably, sweet.

So, the guys let me know they are on the last site and to prep for salvage ops. As we are ‘raiding’ though, I drop one of the eight Salver IIs and add a cloak and change all three the lows to warp stabs, JIC you know… then I warped out to the C2 EXIT BM, cloaked up to await their call to warp in and...   uh…   no hole… uh oh.

“Uh, guys? Wanna check the return BM on your side?”   “HUH?”   “What??” AI warped to the return BM and… nope, no hole. Oh shit. And NEITHER of em has probes or a launcher. Oh fukmerunnin! We now have a Mach and a Kronos ‘lost in space’ in a hostile C2. Yea, there’s moar than one ‘live’ POS just no one awake in ’em ATM… and so begins the first HBHI Two Man Great Wormhole Adventure…  LOL

Inna vain attempt at sympathy or ransom, AI wrote to the CEO of the corp with towers in the C2, then logged for the night.

Inna vain attempt at infiltration, Ty prepped and alt and applied to the corp in that hole, then logged for the night.

Inna vain attempt to refind the lost C2 in the local W-space constellation, I stayed up and scanned and ‘splored all the holes in our current constellation.

I Scanned eight holes to Empire dead ends… two Null and two Lo and a Hi… I was starting to see dubble when I was in the C1/Lo and dint need to resolve the Lo as the guys were inna C2… and I hadda put her back in the barn afore I crashed, so no joy. Oh well, I tried.

So I get a message from AI today that he had been in contact with the CEO of the C2 corp and that put him in contact with a corpie in the C2 and 100M ISK later, AI was allowed to warp out to Empire space unmolested… OMG! Schweet! AND he says they were OK guys and we may have just found a corp worth knowing… This good news was somewhat tainted by Strigon’s impatience… you see he self destructed his Mach rather than mess about trying to get out… he just couldn’t wait…  =O

Goes to show you what a little patience and faith can win ya in the deadliest space in EVE… a saved Kronos (and POD), a lesson learned the hard way (Core Scan Probes, NEVER leave home without em!)(keep in mind my Noccy dint have any Probes either… LOL)… and just mebbe, some new friends to boot.

Fly Safe and see you in the Sky  =/|)=

Friday, June 29, 2012

Captains Mast…

or~  How Complacency Lost My Mastodon…

Been a while since I journaled ‘bout th’ goings on in our new homehole, so…   =]

We all have, as so many do this time of year, a lot of commitments and family stuff that reduce the amount of shipboard time we have available to us but, in the time we do have, we are settling in ok.

One of my hats is Director of POS Ops and Maintenance, meaning I get to keep the fuelling records and manage all the module and defense battery planning, placement, anchoring and loading in the case of the guns. I plan, schedule and oversee CPU/PWR use/requirements and online/offline mods as required for refining and production balanced against the current defense needs based on SecStat (Security Status).

OK, I jump in my Cheetah. I set the HUD/OV to tactical and enable distance/vector markers for the selected mods I am going to anchor next. I warp out to one of several BM’s within 150km of the nearest DP [Defense Position], warp in to the DP nearest the next one I need to set and then sublight over to the position. I BM the DP and repeat until I have BMs for the next 3 or 4 DPs. My Cheetah is capable of over 2k m/s so this goes rather quickly. Next I have to launch and anchor the mods, I usually use my Mastodon for this, it has the highest m3 of my available Indies and when you have as many defense mods up as we do… well, you need the m3. I have a load of mods transported onboard, check the POS MDP [POS Module Deployment Plan], then ‘Launch for Corp’, usually 4 mods at a time, and set about anchoring the mods.

Once I have 3 or 4 positions all anchored, I check the Plan and select the required ammo, have that transported over and now I have to do the dangewus part… I have to be physically within 2500m of each gun in order to load the required ammo type… this means I have to    leave    the    force    field. Ok, yes, I ‘could’ use another ship…I ‘could’ carry ammo for just one set of guns at a time… I ‘could’… and I should have… I really, really should have… but I dint. Now as anyone who has read this journal at all knows I am not noob at W-space, which is why I place the blame for my Mastodon loss squarely on the shoulders of “Complacency”… Lt. Sha-rel com Plai-sensii was the officer on duty and had the con at the time of the incident. It all HIS fault!

I was in my Parlor of Preparedness, all… you know… prepared 'n shit. The ammo loadout op was running smoothly so I was taking a bit ‘o… personal time… and watching one of those 2D ‘tainments from Uurth… something called “Big Bang Something” as I ‘member it. First thing tells me we’re in any trubble is the Target Lock Klaxons feariffic wailing. I run to the bridge just in time to see a warp bubble go up around us. Huh?? I always fly on the inside of the guns and as close to the FF as possible, usually around 8000m. Only 8000 meters. And now I have a Broadsword HIC in bubble range of me… cripes.

“Captain on the Bridge!” the COB calls out and I relieve Lt. com Plai-sensii and take the con. I order an immediate turn and max burn for the spike, the shortest route back into the FF. I order the Invuln II and the Lrg Shield Booster brought online… and the bridge goes deathly silent as the deck crew collectively holds its breath waiting to see if we can cover that measly 8000m in time. Our shields begin to go down fast under the incoming DPS from KTyJIxyc’s Broadswords 425mm AC IIs. But… the booster is doing its job… and while we are losing shields we are tanking back a part of it each cycle.

It was at this time that I saw the eerie pulsing red glow of a Neut in action and I assumed it was the Broadsword neuting my Mastodon… however I am not sure it was not our POS as, of the Ewar mods I had online, 2 Neuts were up and the beam was at an angle in my view… not dead on… and I did not note a ‘neut’ warning icon on the HUD/OV but in the heat of battle I can’t say it was not there either… I guess I will never know. If however, the POS did get him locked and engaged, I wish I had had enough guns up to drive him off.

But it was not to be, as it was, I ordered a Combat Evac as I watched the shields go under 20% and then down. After that it did not take long for him to eat through my armor and the hull disintegrated like it was paper… I was ready and instawarped out of the cloud of smoke and burning gases from the first Mastodon I had ever owned to a SS 300km out and from there immediately to another off grid SS then back as quick as I could to the POS and rehipped to my Loki. I saw the Broadsword was still on Dscan but had warped off grid so I recalled all the crew evac pods, thank the gods most of the crew were ready, we lost only five from the engine room… the watch had refused to evac and were desperately working to get every erg out of the engines to get us into the FF… brave lads all.

I was taking stock and considering my options… and TBH, working to get my heart rate down to reasonable levels… when my CEO warped in and said…

AINeumann > tuurrrr
AINeumann > hey
TurAmarth ElRandir > I just got jumped... and lost my Mastodon...
AINeumann > sad
AINeumann > loose anything?
AINeumann > besides the mastodon
[copied killmail details here]
AINeumann > good thing it wasnt to much... where were you jumped?
TurAmarth ElRandir > shit happens
TurAmarth ElRandir > look around... you'
TurAmarth ElRandir > my wreck is right outside...
AINeumann > really at the pos
TurAmarth ElRandir > I almost got back inside...  alllmost
AINeumann > i am looking at it right now
AINeumann > i see him on d scan
TurAmarth ElRandir > SHIT I was RIGHT THERE.... on the edge of the FF

I was too, right smack on the edge of the FF. My wreck was actually in the Flux Zone. For them as dunt know, a Planetary Orbital Station’s Forcefield is not a sharp line as ‘twere… it… breathes… pulses in and out sorta like cloth balloon inna breeze… and this variable edge is the Flux Zone. It can vary by as much as several hundred meters and my wreck was only slightly moar out than in… every now and again it was actually completely inside the FF at the farthest out flux... I was THAT close! Damn… danm damn damn. I reshipped to my Mammoth and slowboated down to the wreck to try and grab the remaining loot and salvage her when…

TurAmarth ElRandir > HE’s back!!!
TurAmarth ElRandir > he blew the wreck???
TurAmarth ElRandir > fukker...

He warped in, blew up the wreck and warped out. He saw I could loot and salvage from inside the FF so he decided to deny me the L&S. He then warped out to 100k off the sun and sat there… uncloaked. Hmmm…

The next thing that happens is just effin stoopid… He starts talkin in local… this guy tries to bait us out to the sun ‘cause the poor fool is “lost in space”… riiiiiiiiiiiiiiight… LOL

KTyJIxyc > Help me get out
TurAmarth ElRandir > uh...  lemmethinkaboutitno...
TurAmarth ElRandir > self asplode... you will go home
TurAmarth ElRandir > LOL
KTyJIxyc > I'm here with yesterday I forgot to do bm
TurAmarth ElRandir > too bad.... asplodin my Mast not goodwill move your part
KTyJIxyc > throw me
KTyJIxyc > bm
KTyJIxyc > and I will go
TurAmarth ElRandir > tell ya what.... I'll drop a BM in a can 19km from the POS... come get it...
KTyJIxyc > in the sun
TurAmarth ElRandir > I know... sat 50k from ya for a few mins...

While we were chattin up local… in W-space, which BTW felt really weird as you NEVER TALK IN LOCAL in holes… NEVER EVER. Like gravity, it’s not just a good idea, it’s the law. In all my time ingame I have seen that rule broken only like 3 or 4 times… anyhoo.. This guy actually believes he has a chance in hell to get us to warp out to th’ sun where he (and all his cloaky frens) can die horribly… uh, oh wait, KILL us inna horribad fire… yea, right.

TurAmarth ElRandir > kill me once, shame on you, kill me twice, shame on me… you dunt get a second go…
KTyJIxyc > lol)

Anyhoo… needless to say we closed up shop as the hour was late and we have seen neither hide nor hair of ol miss little lost KTyJIxyc. So… I lost a Mastodon, a 230M ISK loss. I should have been buttthurt. I should’a been all ragequitty. I should’a been… but I wunt… LOL.  It’s EVE and it’s W-space man… the deadliest space ‘in’ EVE… and I was watchin TV while flyin an Indie outside of the FF… feces occurs.  =]

Fly Safe and see you in the Sky  =/|)=

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Borgin For the LULZ…

or~ Are the Goon-born the Borg of EVE?

Recently I was reading through The Mittani’s posts on Ten Ton Hammer… just to slake my curiosity as ‘twere. I am, at best, ambivalent about Mittens and the Goons. They are a part of the warp and weft of the tapestry that is EVE. In the game I play though, they are like the weather in a far off land… inevitable, interesting and generate a lot of dialog, both pro and con, but so far they haven’t really been a part of my game on a personal level... Their greatest impact on me has been mostly when they manipulate the market… causing prices to do this or that… and, well, they’re not the only ones who do that are they? Not much I can do about it either way so I either pay the going price, warp around lookin for a better price, make changes to my fit/requirements… or I do without.

Being a carebadger and a wormholer, and as my blog is moar personal journal than metagame commentary, I have never had much to say about Mittens or the Goons and while I may disagree with their playstyle, I still believe strongly in the sandbox ideal… and no matter who you are or what your gameplay in EVE is, they do help to keep things from getting boring in the sandbox. I must say I found the ‘Sack of Jita’ a very interesting bit of emergent gameplay… Now with the current furor over their ‘FacWar LP Exploit’ and after reading Mittens post, The EVE-Born, I found myself wondering about the differences between players like me, an EVE-born, and the players Mittens describes, the Community-born, or ‘Goon-born’.

I keep trying to imagine what EVE is like for them. How very differently they must perceive/feel about/value EVE as compared to the rest of us. I know that for me the experiences I have had and will have in EVE are of great value. EVE is, for me, a very ‘real’ Virtual Life. How must it be for someone who skips the formative experiences? What would it be like to play EVE with NO investment? to have someone mentor you on exactly what skills to queue so you are sorta hand-held up the Learning Cliff? to NEVER have to make one little red ISKie on your own?

It’s the age old conundrum…
Make your kids work for the things they want and they learn the value in that labor…
Give them everything for free, and nothing they have has any value to them.

The EVE-born work for every ISK… but if the Goon-born are, as Mittens says, …ushered into massive alliance warfleets, mentored by veteran players, and showered with isk and ships. Then how can they value any of it the same way, to the same degree that we do?

The EVE-born play the way I believe CCP thought was ‘standard’... we all open an account and start as noobs, we all experience a ‘noobhood’, if you will, where we all have to slog through similar rites of passage and we all learn the ‘ropes’ of EVE in a similar manner. Due to this a high percentage of us do end up, as Mittens put is so well,  “…one might consider default EVE-born society a Culture of Honor…” but…

The Goon-born are an emergent form of player… instead of being ‘born’, naturally if you will, IN EVE… they are gestated outside of the game. They basically are Goons before they have a toon in New Eden. They miss (avoid?) the shared experiences and investment in time and the effort and angst of noobhood and the stress of facing the Learning Cliff, they never know what it is like to ‘want’ a Stabber… and not have enough ISK to afford even the Skill Book. They never know what it is like to ‘mine veld in a Bantam’ just to make the ISK to buy the book to learn the skill to fly the ship… then back to ‘mine moar veld’ to afford the ship itself.

They simply cannot have the same investment, intellectual and emotional, in New Eden that the EVE-born do… they decry it as ‘just a game’, and to them… that’s all it really is, or ever will be… all it ever CAN be. So they can run scams and bots… engage in corp-theft, griefplay and the harsher side of piracy with a clean conscience because they never learned to LOVE the game the way the EVE-born do. We all know the “Golden Rule” of EVE… Don’t fly what you cannot afford to lose… only… the very newest of Goons can afford ANY ship in the game (they are given the skill books and mentored on the fastest skill queue for any given ship & role)… and once skilled in any given ship, they can afford to lose them over and over and over… think about what that means.

I am not denigrating the Goon ‘experience’ or their involvement in EVE. I am simply trying to understand the differences between us and them. Now when I read their posts on the forums… with my new perspective on them… I can better understand their mindset. This does not mean I agree with them or ‘see’ their side as reasonable or acceptable, I can’t and don’t… I was born here, this is my Virtual HOME. EVE ‘means’ a lot moar to me than just pixels on a screen. I realize fully that my interaction with and within EVE take place on a PC screen… but my ‘involvement’ goes far, far deeper. In my virtual life I grew up here… I have a ‘continuum of existence’, memories of learning and experiences of growth that the Goon-born, brought into the game the way Mittens describes, miss out on completely.

I cannot help but wonder if the Goon-born see the EVE-born the way the Borg see all life in the Star Trek ‘verse… as nothing moar than a resource. They don’t see us as people much less as equals. We are Pubbies, Noobs, carebears… Tear Production Units… ISK Generation Modules… cattle… but not people worthy of respect and equality... and, due to their stunted upbringing, they are unable to… and never will. Like the Borg. with all the evidence online, ingame and at hand I do not believe they can ever be negotiated or reasoned with… what we have that they want we cannot ‘give’… part of what they require to fulfill their desires is, in essence, that it is ‘taken’ from us by force of arms, ‘scammed’ from us by their perceived superior gamesmanship… remember, as the Goons love to say "We're not out to ruin THE game, we're out to ruin YOUR game."

So how do we counter this mindset? Honestly, I’m not sure we can unless the great majority of the EVE-born… those independent, self reliant and proud spacers, could come together and form a United Alliance of Planets, or maybe an EVE version of  NATO… NETA, the New Eden Treaty Alliance… an EVE wide superalliance of the EVE-born to hold back the Borg…

Here are a few to the point quotes from his post, The EVE-Born: (Italic mine)

The EVE-born:

“The average EVE-born starts life alone and confused in Hisec (Not true… myself and so very many I have known had a wonderful noobhood… easy no, fun YES!). Friendless and bewildered, (Not true for all… many players join EVE directly due to friends) they try to ascend the learning cliff. Most begin with safe PvE activities, mining or running missions. After a while they may find a corp, and after many months they may - may - dare to try out PvP. (Again, I call BS… a high percentage of my EVE-born friends jumped into PvP very early… right after being ganked, mission jumped, etc., etc.)…”

While some take the plunge into scamming and piracy with relish, most players try to keep their noses clean and behave with ‘respect’- one might consider default EVE-born society a Culture of Honor, often referred to as ‘e-bushido’.

The Goon-born:

“The experience of a new Goonswarm player is radically different from that of the EVE-born.”
”…when they install the game they are an extension of an existing community…”
“Rather than learning the basics alone in hisec, on their first day newbie goons podjump to deep nullsec. There, they are surrounded by their fellows, ushered into massive alliance warfleets, mentored by veteran players, and showered with isk and ships.”

“A community-born player is able to entirely skip the dreaded ‘mining veld in a Bantam’ phase. Instead of a positive kill/death ratio, external communities place a greater value on enthusiasm and a willingness to die for the group.

“In practice, this means that Goons, Broskis and Redditors can be outright bastards to everyone else in the EVE - besides their allies, of course - and get away with it. The game’s normal culture of honor doesn’t apply…”

Wednesday, June 20, 2012


or~  Why Do We Go To War?

This began as a comment on a post on Jester’s Trek. I wanted to respond to Skewed Perspective and my muse sorta got outta hand… so here I am with a full blown post on War Decs… something I have very little interest in or much to do with… War Decs dunt reach into W-space, and when they do… who cares? it’s -1.0 space...  Neg sec.

OK, my response to Ripard began…

My understanding of the reason behind War Dec mechanics was to give players a method to create PvP opportunities in Hisec that were free of CONCORD intervention, but still carried a 'cost'. Instead of losing ships to CONCORD action (cost) you bribe CONCORD directly (cost) to 'look the other way' as 'twere.

As far as the mechanics go... I can't say I have ever thought it worked very well. I am in complete agreement that the new changes are… well... weird. You see, to me EVE is a true ‘Virtual Reality’ and as such I have always based my thinking regarding the mechanics of EVE on “How does that work in Real Life?”

Wars in RL can be based on many factors but are historically almost always based on socioeconomic needs relating to resources needed for Industry and resources to support the populace. IE raw materials such as minerals, oil & coal, arable land for food production and land for settlements and colonies, etc. IE Lebensraum, or literally “Living Space”…

[And if the Germanic reference pisses ya off, too bad, it’s very apropos in our case as aggressive violent conflict between the players is CCPs numba one desired and stated goal. EVE is a PvP game and they want to give us reasons to fight… they wants us fighting each other forever… remember "The Gamesters of Triskelion"? or mebbe "Day of the Dove" is moar apropos if one considers all the forumrage and whining.]

In EVE we have an abundance of raw material resources, IE planets, moons & belts for PI, moon mining and mineral mining… and literally thousands of NPC Stations in which ANYONE can dock as many ships as they want and live in for FREE, forever… and some number of these FREE stations (I am curious now how many) are actually empty or rarely used most of the time.

Wouldn’t’ it be interesting if…

If… as long as pilots remains in NPC corps they are limited in available skills and ship types… in order to access the full range of skills and ships a pilot MUST leave the NPC corp and either create an OMC (One-Man Corp) or create a corp with others or join an existing corp. A pilot returning to an NPC corp retains the skills and ships from his time in player corps, but cannot USE those added skills or ships as long as he is in the NPC corp.

If… you had to pay rent to stay in an NPC Station past downtime? With rates based on single occupancy with 2 frigates, 1 Cruiser, 4 BCs and 3 BSs (for example) in dock. Rent an office and the per ship rates scale down drastically.

If… corps/Alliances were limited in membership size by the number of planets/POSes/stations and the types and amount s of resources available in the system(s) in which they have offices and/or POSes…

Now please understand, I strongly believe the One Man Corp is, and should always be, a viable playstyle. Forcing everyone into multiplayer corps is limiting and I feel and believe EVE should be as open to as many playstyles as possible. The requirements for an OMC and small corps should be easily fulfillable in ANY system in New Eden… the larger the corp the greater the resource need… at some point some corps will get big enough to begin to ‘covet’ their neighbor’s resources…

CCPs balancing of resources would drive corps and Alliances as some systems would be able to support five thousand OMCs or one hundred 50MCs or fifty 100MCs… some would support only one hundred OMCs or ten 10MCs or one 100MC. As New Eden’s populace (we hope) grows new sources (increased or new ABs & IBs, increased or new deposits on planets and moons) will be found in existing systems, same as IRL.

The real biggie though would be this…
The mechanics behind War Decs would no longer be bribes to CONCORD, but a Formal Declaration of War against (Fillintheblank corp) for…   (wait for it)     SPECIFIED GOALS.
Goals would be Specific systems/planets/moons/POSes(/Stations where applicable) listed as objectives.

War would be prosecuted until:
(1) the Aggressors Specified Goals are achieved;
(2) the Defender surrenders or abandons the listed goals;
(3) the Aggressor quits;
(4) the warring parties agree to a cessation of hostilities by Treaty.

The Formal Declaration of War would suffice to ‘call off’ CONCORD, as that organization is primarily a police force and does not get involved in Politics at this level… and they can’t be bribed either… (that has ALWAYS bothered me TBH).

“OK, how do you ‘take’ a system/planet/moon/station you ask?” … I can think of several ways. But the idea is to base any War mechanic AS MUCH AS POSSIBLE on Real Life. Just ONE idea… “Blockade”.

To Blockade a Station:
The Attackers warp in a fleet of (say) six BS’s that orbit the station. As they are at War with a corp who holds offices in the station, the Attacking force can ‘broadcast’ to the station that it is now under a ‘Blockade’ and pilots in the War on both sides are now unable to dock at this station.

The Defenders can field a fleet (from outside or undocking from station or both) to aggress the blockading ships, while some ships (Blockade Runners) in the Attackers fleet, not engaging the blockading ships, would have some % based chance of docking based on the attack/defense balance of forces or on the outcome of the fight. The Blockade Runners of course can be attacked, but this would take some of the heat off the Defenders so they could aggress the Attackers moar effectively…

If the Defenders drive off or kill the Attackers then all Defenders can dock and can bring in re-enforcements & supplies.
If the Attackers kill or drive off 50% or moar of the Defenders then no Defender ships, aggressing or not, can dock.

OK, so just log off until the Attackers give up, right? Uh no… as long as the Attackers can keep the Station in “Blockaded” status for, let’s say… a minimum of one half of uptime everyday (the longer the better), the station will consider the Defenders as permanently blockaded and they can then be ‘Starved Out’.

When the Defenders reach ‘StarveOut’ (some TBD time period w/o resupply) then the Defenders will be ejected from the station in whatever ship they are in (NOTE: if the pilot(s) are not online, their ship(s) are invulnerable and immediately performs a logoff warpout) … so NO, the Attacker does not get to kill you when you are not online… but the Station WILL boot yer ass if you just hunker down and do nothing.

To avoid StarveOut, the Defenders must get (x amt [based on corp membership] of consumer goods, IE food stuffs) into the station by “Blockade Running”… see possible Defense tactics above. OOC Alts and neuts cannot bring 'food' in and buying 'food' from the market is not alowed... you are under a violent blockade and the NPC's running the station want no part of your silly little war.

If the Defenders can get ships in when the Attackers do not have a blockade fleet up, they are supplied and the 'StarveOut' timer resets/decreases. And the Defender's Allies can bring in supplies and the Attacker's Allies (yes, the attacker can have allies... why not? They can and do IRL, right?) can run blockade duty... Hmmm... just imagine the ramifications/possibilities...

This is just one method I can think of to replicate a RL example of a War strategy brought into EVE. My mind is literally bubbling away with historical examples of strategy and tactics and how they could be virtualized… am I the only one who sees this?

One example I am using ATM… I fit my Meal in a way that would get me LOL’ed by most players, care and grieferbear alike… I fit x2 Med 425mm AC IIs’ running Hail and x6 Lrg 650mm AC “Scouts” running Fed Navy PPlasma. Why x2 Med guns on a Maelstrom??? Cause I can’t hit the effin Sleeper Frigs with the Lrg 650s, but I web em and hit em with the Med 425s and they melt like butta.

So you say “Use yer droans for the damn frigs!!” I do, but Sleepers HATE droans so they do get attrited and the 425s plus the droans are FAR moar effective than either alone. It is a very effective tactic against the range of ships in Sleeper sites but it is a very unusual fit and it goes against the accepted norm and the way you are “supposed” to fit your ships in EVE. I dunt care though, it works very, very well for me and that is all I care about.

CCP talks a lot about how EVE is Real… Well, we know they can talk the talk, but can they walk the walk? CCP, make EVE Moar Real. Lebensraum… Living Space… Sit down and think through how shit works IRL and base New Eden Mechanics on the logic, illogic and examples of Real Life Mechanics...

Fly Safe and see you in the Sky  =/|)=

EDIT: I want to add sumthin I had on my mind, but fergot... The "Goals" based War Dec did not include 'grief' as an acceptable goal because, AFAIK, no RW nation has ever gone to war IRL 'just' to screw with another nation cause it was too noob and 'deserved' it and for 'fun'...   =P

Monday, June 18, 2012

Noob to Null… I’druther Be Inna Hole…

or~  Thus Begins HBHIs Third Foray into W-space…

Home at last, home at last…. Thank the Gods, we are home at last!! HBHI has moved into a C3 wormhole. We have our POS, basic internal mods and a good start on the defense mods setup. We have a new home…  =]

We had all staged the majority of our ships & mods at our HQ in Englennaert so when AI finalized on the new hole, he decided to buy a freighter and shipped the POS and mods to the last Hisec system before the lo run to the hole. And then used an Itty 5 to move everything in and setup the POS and such. Then he brought in his ships and stuff.

All of my ships and stuff had been shipped out to the HQ, by him, from the nullsec system we had been guesting in for the last few months. I asked if he would freight all of it out to the last Lo and I would bring it all in with my Mastodon. Well… that night I had had a very busy day and was dead wiped out tired and I knew if I logged on I would wake up either sitting on a gate or in my POD as I would most def fall asleep at the wheel as twere… so I just crashed and accepted that I had a lot of work ahead of me to get my stuff to wherever the new hole was going to be on the morrow.

Now the only ship I did not have in the HQ was my Mael, which AI had freighted out to the last Lo from the old null sys. He had stripped it for the freighting and so I had this bare hull Maelstrom with only x3 Lrg Cap Ctrl Circuits rigged to get out of lo and thence to the HQ where I could refit it and then get it in the hole. So I logged in yesterday and found I own AI one… big time… he had not only brought all my stuffs to the last Hi, he had then run everything in with his Indy… damn, what guy.

So I logon and he lets me know all my stuffs is in th' POS and he asks for some assistance with this POCO he’s bashing… wait, what? He is bashing a POCO… ALL BY HISSELF? LOL! OMG now THAT will take a while… I dunt care what yer flyin. As 'tis he is in a Kronos, hmmm… not too bad, she may be limited to only four Lrg Hybrids, but they are bonused very heavily… he can put out as much volley DPS as my Mael does with certain fits. As I am running a 650mm “Scout” AC fit, my volley is about 2K, he reports he is getting roughly 2500… schweet.

I get my Mael fitted and make the run in… AI reports the one Losec hop has been clear all day. He had no trubble at all bringing in all my stuff and making several runs in and out… cool. So I warp to the gate to the losys our hole is in and it is, of course, being watched… great… I overreact, jump through and then mess up and jump to another gate (thankfully to Hisec) instead of to the hole… just great. So I make the jump back… I am in a Maelstrom not an Indy, and while PvE fitted I have a very heavy tank and I also have a Dread Guristas Web fitted (freebie I got in null)(and it’s fit to help with them nasty Sleeper Frigs…) so I am not too worried unless I get gang surprise butt secks… but meh.

So I jump in the last Lo and I’m clear, then on to the hole and…  “Honeeeeey, Immmm HOOOOME!”  LOL. I fleet up with AI and warp to 0, target the POCO , launch x3 Caldari Navy Wardens and light up the 650mm “Scout” Lrg Auto-Cannons... and so I join AI in the second most snorefest activity in EVE… a structure bash. A POCO has 10M shld hit points, 2M armor and 2.5M hull… and AI has brought the shields down to approx 70% by the time I join in the fun. It does, of course, go much better with the two of us going at it, but still… it is ALMOST as bad as…   mining.

Needless to say I am spamming Dscan, reloading my guns as they run dry, firing… eventually run outta ammo, run to the POS, and have the crew stack ammo in the corridors, in the brig, in the mess… and head back. Eventually the POCO goes into reinforced mode… and AI’s reaction was epic and wonderful… he dint know the new POCOs go into reinforce mode same as a POS… he was not happy,  not 'madbro', but not happy…  LOL.

So we broke off the bash op and warped to the POS. I started breaking out my ships which had all been packaged for shipping and had to be assembled and rigged and fitted… shseesh. Then lo and behold Strigon logs on and undocks!!  Yae!!! For the first time in over two months the HBHI Founders and Directors are online together and in their very own POS in a C3 wormhole… Oh Frabjous Day!

AI wants to run a site, Strigon and I concur. Strigon has to reship and check ammo etc. Then we fleet warp to a “Solar Cell” site… So I ask if this is the lowest difficulty site inna C3 and I get,”Wha?” I ask again and get, “Uh, I dunno, just warpin us to the first one on Dscan…” Oh… great.  LOL... We are new to C3 sites and Sleepers and if you know ANYTHING about W-space it is the Sleepers are the hardest NPC AI ingame… and they get harder and moar deadly the higher you go up the Class ladder. We are warping to a site which ‘may’ be the hardest site in here and we have NO idea what to expect… LOL... This may not go well. If yer curious, read this… EVE-Survival W-Space Guide.

OK, so we warp in and the first thing that happens to me is my system goes dead laggy. I mean laggy like if you had the Burn Jita Event back two years ago laggy. I cannot effectively “do” anything… I had both AI and Strigon on the Fleet Watch List and saw Strigon, inna Duck, start to go into armor… I had not been hit once (that I could tell) and I had just gotten a target lock onna frig and was desperately trying to fire my guns when I get “Fleet warping to POS!” from Strigon. I go to warp and my system returns to normal functionality as we warp out of the site… Hmm… not an auspicious start to say the least.

AI and Strigon report no issues with functionality on their end, they just got pwned by the Sleepers is all, well… Strigon did… and in the one ship that is considered by one and all to be the W-space queen as far as tanking goes… The Drake may not put out world shattering DPS, but it can tank like a bich. That worried me a bit… plus my client going all fubar was not making me feel all warm and fuzzy… unless you feel all warm and fuzzy right before your POD breaches and spills your bloated flashfrozen radiation toasted corpsicle into the black…

So I shut down all systems, hardbooted, logged back on and had SARA (the Semi Autonomous Rational Array computer AI that runs… well, everything…) run a Level III systems diag… all green she says.. uh huh… well, let’s see what we shall see then. I report ready to go back and once moar into the breach my friends… we warp back to the site. THIS time I am ok. All systems responding and functioning at normal efficiency. As I am AC fit and running Fed Navy PPLas I hit HARD but I do not have the range that Strigon in his Duck and AI in his Kronos have so I target and go after them as are inside my falloff.

Now I start to attract some love from the Nefarious Forces of Naptime and DAMN! That is attention I can do without! I have 64.3K EHP with 129HP’s passive recharge from the Lrg Shield Extndr II and x3 Adapt Invuln IIs w/ x3 Lrg CDF Purger rigs and I am cut down to 50% shields faster than I can honestly say I have ever seen before… I call out my status and request the fleet align to POS. A few seconds later my 30% shield warning klaxons fill the ship with their dire warning and I request an emergency warpout… we fleet warp to the POS, allow shields and CAP to recharge, then go back to it.

We are killing a few ships each time, but we dunt know the triggers and I am sure we have triggered all waves on grid a damn sight earlier than we should have. But, we are managing it, we can’t go toe to toe with ‘em as it stands though. Even so, AI is tractoring and looting the wrecks as we go and I had completed fitting my Noctis earlier, except for Salvage Tackle Rigs, so once we finished the site, which we eventually did, all I had to do was reship, warp to AI and run the salvagers on everything… If this turns out to be a workable tactic I may try a x8 Salvager II fit Noccy as it was very fast salvaging and back to the POS.

AI did some prelim estimates of the ISK values for the L&S (no MNRS) and for one site it was a decent haul considering we dint get any MNRs… but I am wary of the Est Values in the new UI and anyhoo… one site does not a statistical basis make. Besides I was in a Noctis sans Tackle rigs and this time I have decided to go the cost of the T2 versions… approx 40M each last time I priced am…they are supposed to give you an additional 5% over the T1 versions which would put me at the game max of 130% chance to pull the best salvage… we shall see what we shall see.

BTW… while we were running the site, AI said… “Happy father’s day Jas…” Damn… a better father’s day present I could nae have asked for than to be back in W-space flying with my sons… brought a real salt water tear to the right hand corner of my left hand eye it did…  =]

Fly Safe and see you in the Sky  =/|)=

Friday, June 8, 2012

Separating Sleepers from dey Stuffs…

or~  Quiet and Profitable Days in da Hole…

After setting up camp in the Temp C2, I decided to take a break from scouting and run some sites to refresh the wallet after the initial outlay for fuels etc. We already had all the mods except a CHA (Corp Hangar Array). We dint have one as we had used the far larger storage available in Sm, Med and Lrg Ship Assembly Arrays, but in a Sm POS I dunt need, nor can I afford in PWR and CPU, to online even a Sm Ship Assy. So I had to buy a CHA, a load of Minnie Fuel Blocks and a load of Stront.

As I have said I am being very careful running Sleeper sites as the only DPS ship I have in this hole is my Loki and it is max Cloaky fit which greatly reduces the available DPS.
With my skills my max Cloaky fit runs:
 x5 425mm AC IIs w/ Rep Flt PPlas = 303 DPS (864 volley).

In comparison my max DPS fit, a HAM (Heavy Assault Missile) Loki runs:
X4 425mm AC IIs w/ Rep Flt PPlas
X3 Arbalest HAMs w/ Cal Nav Scourge
x5 Fed Nav Hobgoblins = 507 DPS (1185 volley)

This is a diff of 205 DPS (321 volley)… which would make a significant difference in the time required to complete a site and in the tactics I use for running sites… but… I am living in here solo… with no support at all. The cloaky fit has some real advantages in this situation by running a CovOps cloak and the Interdiction Nullifier. I can warp cloaked and I can warp past and THROUGH warp disruption bubbles… so anchored bubbles and Heavy Interdictors dunt effect me.

Now so far I have not ‘seen’ one visitor yet and I have had no signs of any while I have been asleep… As I am running sites in a casual manner, IE not ‘grinding’ but running them carefully and taking my time and I have been running only the Perimeter Hangars, the easiest of C2 Combat Sites, and the overall number of sites has slowly increased instead of decreased which would be the case if I was raided. This of course is only true IF I had visitors who were raiding for sites… if I have had people just scouting I’ll never know or if I have people raiding the Mag, Grav & Ladar sites I would not know as I am not actively scanning them down.

Even though I have so far had no known visitors I still run sites very carefully, by this I mean differently from the usual tactics for site running when in corp. When in fleet with corpmates, the tactic is usually to simply warp the fleet in on a site, land at whatever distance the Dscan warpin puts you at… and just go to it. Going solo and keeping personal security highest in mind, my solo tactic is to cloak up, warp to the site, BM the dscan warpin, then warp out to the closest celestial and warp back to the first BM at 100km. Then I run a series of warp out and backs each time to 100km from the last BM making a new BM until I have a BM a minimum of 350km from the nearest Sleeper ship. I clean these up and keeping only two of them, the farthest one out and the first one moar than 150km from the group of Sleepers. I want to be far enough out to be able to warp to either BM from the site and to be able to tactically warp between the two BMs also.

This gives me two instawarps from the Sleeper group allowing me to disengage, break aggro, cloak up and yet stay on grid. If I start to get overwhelmed or raider(s) uncloak or warp in on me, I can break off and cloak up while warping to one of the instawarps while still remaining on grid. I can take the time to let my CAP and shields regen. If it is just the Sleepers getting the upper hand I can simply warp back in and reengage… or, if it was a raider or raiders, I can decide whether to engage, safe up or initiate some other response.

But… all quiet in the hole so far. I wake to the baleful yet soul warming light of the Red Giant sun… my crews and I are at ease once again in our daily duties. We prep carefully, we fly carefully and we have had some very good luck with the statics in this C2 since we moved in. Of the last three A239’s, two have been within one hop of Hisec and so far no moar than nine hops from one of the major hubs so no issues with the few Empire runs I have had to make. Of the D382s, while both have had live POSes, neither had anyone awake when I scouted them and I have seen no evidence of visitors from them. I have also had a couple of K162s but both were to NPC null, and both systems were deserts.

Taking our time and with the usual summer RL>EVE, we have run only five sites in the last few days. As some of you know, the only ISK you make in W-space is from Loot & Salvage, as I am solo in here I am running a Salvage Thrasher instead of risking a Noctis. Salvage rates seem to be approximately the same… or mebbe just slightly lower… than I am used to in the old C2. I pulled nine MNRs for five sites, an avg of 1.8 per site. As the Perimeter Hangar spawns x2 BS’s, x7 Cruisers and x2 Frigates, the smallest number of Sleepers in a C2 combat site, I did not expect a high rate so I am so far satisfied. I want to build a HAM Loki to bring in to run sleepers keeping my CloakyLoki for scouting and see if that makes any difference, plus start running some of the harder sites.

Understand I am not complaining about the ISK in here, I did ALL quick sells for the L&S for the five sites and pulled in just over 100M ISK… I have no problem with that as if I decided to really grind for just a few hours I could easily pull down several M ISK solo and if I play the market a bit I can push that income level up significantly.

So… where else in EVE (or ‘near’ EVE as W-space is not technically ‘in’ the New Eden cluster…) can you play a solo game, live in your own station, and make 100M ISK lazily running just five of the easiest… ‘missions/sites’ available?   By The Gods I Love the Wormhole Life…   =]

Fly Safe and see you in the Sky  =/|)=