Sunday, June 19, 2016

Drifter Mining…

~or “Wake Me When the Drifter is Dead…”

OK, yes I’m still alive, yes I still logon, yes I still play EVE… just haven’t had a lot to SAY is all.

But a thing did come to mind a few days ago when running the “New Improved ™ Sleeper Sites w/ Added Drifter Fun!” You see we, well, my Corp leaders worked out a very smooth and highly effective Drifter comp over on Sisi in the days leading up to the roll out of the “New Improved ™ Sleeper Sites w/ Added Drifter Fun!”. This comp is a tad on the expensive side, but not too much and it is very sweet for small to medium gangs.

OK, we live in a C4 and primarily run C5 sites for ISK and in the process we scan & roll looking for sites and the occasional PVP op. We don’t run caps so we aren’t running any escalations. We run a site… drop MTUs, kill all the shooty things, snag the MTUs and salvage all the left over burnt up things.

Small Note here:
I have never been FC, probably never will be FC… I’m that guy over there who, during a site run (and sometimes during PVP) occasionally turns off his overviews so he can take pix and Ooooh and Ahhhh over the deep and awe inspiring beauty that is EVE… No, you do NOT want me FCing anything… even a mining op in Hisec… That said I will possibly, hell probably get details such as DPS numbers, ranges, speeds, etc. etc. … you know the DETAILS all wrong… so sue me.

We run with anywhere from 4 guys to upwards of 8 or so and we had gotten good at using pretty std. Ishtar/ Guardian / Whatever-you-can-fly fleets for the Pre Change Sleepers. We run a x2Geko/Hammer-II/x2Hob-II drone mix for all ships so DPS is decent and our ISK/hr was good, 30ish minutes a site.

So… the change drops and now instead of massive waves of mixed Sleeper frigs/cruisers/BSs now we get a few paltry token waves before the Main Show… the decloaking of some dumb artifact and… once you aggro the artifact and one second not before… a Drifter Response BS spawns and off we go! 4000ms and Holeee Sheet Batman DPS! So how do we counter it’s initial approach speed reaching over 4k, and orbit range of 15k at approx 2500m/s and normal attacks dealing approx 1K DPS (5k approx every 5 seconds)?

Well, I can tell you that Ishtars supported by Guardians doesn’t do it. So what do we use? The Kobayashi Maru Comp. Nestors with a link Eos supporting Ishtars. A minimum 3 Nestors cap chained as armor Logi, supporting a Linked Eos boosted Ishtar drone DPS wing. The Nestor’s of course add a full X2Geko/Hammer-II/x2Hob-II drone flight each and all drones are assisted under one member’s control.

The Nestors have a very short Cap range so they are always flying grouped tightly together. Their rep range allows the Eos and Ishtars to range a bit further but as DPS is, of course, all drones all we have to do is mitigate the incoming DPS and work the drones down the NPCs spawning each wave in turn until we uncloak the Unknown Structure.

Now we run two fits for the Nestors, the first is our Standard Sleeper Fit:
in the Highs, X3 Lrg Armr Repper IIs / 3 Lrg Cap Trans IIs / Drone Link II;
in the Mids, x2 speed scripted Omnidirectional Tracking Link IIs / x2 Lrg Cap Battery IIs / Drone Nav Comp II / Lrg MJD;
in the Lows, 1600mmSteel Plate / x2Imperial Navy EANMs / DCU II / x2Drone Dmg Amp IIs;
Rigged with Lrg Anti-Exp Pump I / x2 Lrg Egress Port Max IIs.

The second is our Drifter Fit: 
Swap out the Hi Drone Link for a 4th Lrg Cap Trans II;
Swap the x2 Omni’s for a T2 Web and a Grappler and the Drone Nav Comp II for a 100MN AB.

For std Sleepers, we cap chain all up (or down) so 3 Cap Trans in series. Rep as needed, all drones assisted to one guy... Nom Nom Nom...

For Drifters... swap Cap Chain to x2 up x2 down. EVERYONE webs the Drifter. The Drifter 'normally' targets just one of the Nestor's and tends to stay on him, but occasionally will aggro switch (we've lost a few Gekos that way) allowing the others to focus reps as needed.

A bit a go Fozzie made a change whereby you can decide whether or not to spawn the Drifter. If you shoot the Structure, he spawns, if not you take your measly ~30m ISK per wave (x3) and head home. We put a pea shooter (any gun/laser/whatever will do) on one Ish and after we have run the std. Sleepers, we refit, pull drones, the guy with the gun plinks the structure… the drifter spawns, everyone fires up the Abs, launched drones and we all burn hard for the Drifter.

First the Instars get webs on him, that allows the Nestor's to get in web and then Grapple range and then things really get good. Once we get him slowed down enough to get the Grapplers inside their 1km optimal range (-80% speed reduction within that 1km) it’s all over… The Drifter is, for all intents and purposes gangwedgied to death. He is slowed to 29m/s and this is when the drone ball really gets its licks in. Everyone simply hangs on to the Drifter (the Nestors comically staying within 1k of the Drifter... basically a really slow gangbang) while the drone ball eats its way through the Drifters rather impressive omnitank.

Now we have found that the Drifter seems to have some slight resist holes. Not big one’s but enough that we now initially field Ogre IIs (or faction) for the shields and swap over to Praetor IIs (or faction) when we burn through to his armor. We have found this takes them down noticeably faster, not greatly, but a percentage faster than our std. drone flights. We pop the Drifter, refit for Sleepers and warp off to the next site.

Now as to the title of this piece? It seems that the change to Drifters as the End Boss in Anoikis sites, or maybe our comps ability to deal with them has… well… running sites is now, if anything, more lucrative than before… but it is also far, far, far more… boring.

Don’t get me wrong, if the feces impacts the rotary cooling unit during a Drifter run then things get interesting, deadly and with 3 to 4 Nestors on the line, very expensive very quickly, but, so far so good. We have not lost any ships to the Drifters, and we run sites basically at the same rate we did before but, we believe, with a slightly higher ISK/hr. Plus we have been getting some Pew Pew… not a lot by some standards but enough to keep things fun for us.

Two of my recent favs were, one, a group we engaged, after the fight, asked how many ships we had lost to the Drifters... We were like... "Uh none." They said they had lost 6 Domi's in the last few weeks and could we maybe help them with theirs?... seemed they had a Drifter loose in their system... LOL.

So we fleeted up and formed up on their hole (yes knowing full well it could be a trap, but we just fought them and if they went into a fight with their 'C' Game just to get a crack at our Drifter comp with their A Game, then they deserved that crack for the long and impossible con it would have HAD to have been).

They had eyes on the Drifter, we jumped, warped and did that thing we do. We got the schweet lewts and salvage for our troubles and headed home... Sov told us that when we landed and started in on Drifter, the guy on convo said... "Holy Geko." reverently...  LOL

My second fav was when this random 1.3B ISK Occator kill followed by this 1.8bil ISK pod kill… followed by this in local…

Scooter Tazinas > o/ hey guys there is a guy in a proteus that should be coming thru here later…

I love Anoikis… =]

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