Sunday, 29 April 2012

A Tale of Three Russians

Putzing about in and Hevrice as per usual, in a Frigate this time I happen upon three battleships acting very oddly in Murethand. The three of them are doing what I can only describe as repeated formation warps to the control bunker in the system and then back to their POS.

Intrigued, I place my probing alt in the system to keep an eye on them while I take Kirith back to Hevrice to get a bigger ship. My biggest ship at the time when this occurred was a battlecruiser, thus I plump for a trusty Drake.

I ask in intel channels if anyone is interested in catching them with me, however everyone is either deaf or afk. Feeling somewhat frustrated I attempt to convo Itsmehck1, a former corpmate who always tends to be up for shooting against what would normally be considered as unwise odds. He's akf too, meh!

Checking again on my prober I notice that they've stopped formation warping and have entered a faction warfare beacon, a Gallente Major Complex. This again is weird as they are not a faction warfare corporation. I observe them clear the site and subsequently loot and salvage all of it. Maybe the tags are worth a fair bit of isk?

During this time Itsme responds and I give him the low down. He's well up for it so makes best speed to my in another Drake. Meeting up in Melmaniel just a minute too late as the battleships warp out of the beacon and towards a gate. Seconds later though our frustration turns to delight as they've warped to the gate we're on the other side of! So now the conundrum is do we engage three neutral battleships in 2 Drakes, after all battleships are nasty and they'd have the sentry guns on their side too to boot.

Gate fire. They jump into us and of course as pirates we perhaps foolishly engage. Just two battleships decloak along with . . . . a Mackinaw! We light up the Mackinaw who goes down super fast, I get my point on the Typhoon as it does so. The Phoon has heavy neuts and my capacitor is swiftly drained offlining my hardeners, MWD & point. Through careful timing I get my point restablished. The other battleships escapes through use of EC-600's and neuts against Itsme, our own drones have been wiped out by the Phoon's smartbomb.

Now taking fire from the sentries and the Phoon with offlined hardeners were both looking worse for wear. The Phoon is going down though and explodes just as his buddy in the Mega arrives back on the scene. Thoroughly expecting the Mega to jump and run he surprises us by engaging much to our delight.

We both linger on the gate laying into the Megathron, without the pressure of neuts on us we're able to activate our mods long enough to take him down.

We offer gf's in local and warp to safety. With our shields recharging we warp back and loot up what we can. One of the victims returns to his wreck in a Wreathe which smartly jumps to the next system as we arrive on the scene.

Waiting out our GCC Itsme probes down a Hurricane next door which we pop not long before a Talos jumps into us, again promptly destroyed.

I tend to find that you can always rely on Itsme when faced with silly odds.

Friday, 27 April 2012

Wolf vs Drake

So in a moment of madness I decide this is a day I want to play in my Wolf. Note that this post has been in draft a long time and was prior to the Assault Frigate buff. The Wolf is a ship I want to love so dearly but never seem to have tamed it and broken it to my will. One thing is certain the Wolf does not love Kirith.

I went out roaming and just two systems from my home system of Hevrice I found a flashy -10 Drake ratting in Costolle. I can't quite believe that it's ratting, surely a trap being flown by a flashy -10 pirate type? Though perhaps they are trying to improve their security status.

I do some quick research on Battleclinic that yields little except that this pilot does fly Drakes and doesn't have a solo kill to their name. All their Drake losses to date have been buffer fit.

True to my own decision making style I decide what the heck and warp in, landing shows me that he is indeed ratting. I swiftly establish point and begin hammering him with republic fleet EMP s and Gremlin Rage Rockets (Yes I know they're now Mjolnir). I make excellent progress through his buffer. His missiles are barely hurting me with my small armor repairer soaking it up nicely. I get a warm glow inside owing to the knowledge of an explosion about to happen until suddenly.....


Of course I'm jammed straight away and now start taking some fire from the Falcon too. Decision time, I plump for attacking the Falcon and burn over to him. Still perma jammed and tanking the damage just fine I settle into a comfortable orbit around him waiting for a jam to fail. After carrying on for several minutes the missed jam just isn't coming. I've asked on comms and intel for an assist but sadly none is forthcoming so with some disappointment I warp off an move on.

My first suddenly Falcon moment, I've done well in avoiding having come across this before and consider myself well overdue for the experience.

Sunday, 15 April 2012

Totally Off Topic - Heartlands Cornwall

Lately I've gotten little time to practice my time roaming the space lanes, pirating my way to riches in EVE.

The reason for this, well the organisation I work for is now in the final stages before it's launched. I thought I'd tell you a little about it.

I work for a new Social Enterprise, a Charity called Heartlands Trust. It's located in Cornwall and is going to be responsible for running a new visitor attraction. It launches to the world this coming Friday.

Heartlands is predominantly funded by the lottery, and the whole development has been the beneficiary of £35 million funding to transform the 19 acre former derelict mining site in the heart of Cornwall's former industrial and mining hub.

After a long period from idea to reality, the site opens with a three day launch party Friday April 20th. The site is to be a free attraction to promote regeneration and inclusion and includes a very diverse offer including:

  • State of the art cornish mining exhibitions.
  • Restored engine house with 80" beam engine.
  • Biggest adventure playgroound in Cornwall.
  • Diaspora botanical gardens.
  • Red River Cafe & bar.
  • Art & craft studios.
  • Chi an Bobel community, conference & function hall.
  • Totem circle outdoor performance space.
  • Market square.
  • Outdoor events arena.
  • Interactive art installations.
  • 19 sustainable homes.
  • State of the art showcased renewable energy generation.
  • Year round events programme.
I encourage you to check out the website, and if you're in Cornwall or visiting to come along and experience Heartlands.

Wednesday, 11 April 2012

The Darkblade Crime Family

I talk about my alts pretty frequently. Though I'm not sure that I've ever said what each of them does despite being asked on occasion. Time to put pen to paper.

I use a total of five alts across two accounts:
  1. On the same account as Kirith. Back when Kirith went outlaw, which lets face it didn't take long! I needed someone to haul ships and supplies to low-sec. This alt was made to do just that with a Hoarder. Since being in The Tuskers & since flying larger hulls I haven't needed or been able to use the Hoarder, tending instead to use corpmates logistics or my own Freighter which another alt flies. She now mostly sits in a station doing station trading with very few market orders.
  2. Also on the same account as Kirith. This one sits in Jita 4-4 and very rarely undocks. This character can only fly basic frigates. Used predominantly to buy and sell for Kirith. When loots get shipped to Jita she receives and sells them and conversely she buys the ships and supplies for Kirith being sending them to him. In her spare time she station trades with the basic number of market orders.
  3. On my second account and originally intended to be of all things a mining alt! It's even trained too fly a Hulk and has one too, the theory was to mine whilst afk. Even afk I found this pretty tedious especially when I had to frequently log out to my prober. Plumping for a far more passive source of income I retrained him as a station trader operating out of Rens. He's been docked there ever since. His trade skills are one level from maxed on a single skill though I only use around 70 orders daily. All he does nowadays is station trade and the odd contract trade.
  4. On the second account and operates as my prober. Contrary to popular belief does not fly a boosting ship! All I do is probe with it, though I really would benefit from maxing out his probing ability one day.
  5. Last one on the second account. She flies my Freighter when needed which is occasionally at best. Otherwise she runs Caldari Navy level 4 missions in a Drake when I'm unable to pirate due to real life circumstances. She's pulling together the isk for the Thanatos she's training for.
Hope that clears things up

Sunday, 8 April 2012

March 2012 Character Review

Let's start with the statistics by month:

27 Ship kills (25 Solo)
10 Pod kills (9 Solo)
701,368,381 isk cost to victims
3 Ships lost (All Solo)
0 Pods lost
97,245,748 isk income from ships destroyed
37,260,615 isk cost of losses
59,985,133 isk ‘Profit’ for the month
Turning a nice profit for a successive month is very satisfying, As advised last month I have changed the way I choose my roaming ship, flying the ship which is about to come out of the insurance period. Admittedly I lost more ships than I would have liked, 3!
This is how the skill split is looking as of this morning:

These are the skills finished since the last review:

Interceptors V
Cynosaural Field Theory ILarge Projectile Turret ILarge Projectile Turret II Large Projectile Turret IIILarge Projectile Turret IV
Large Projectile Turret V
Cybernetics II
Cybernetics IIILarge Autocannon Specialization I
Large Artillery Specialization I
Cybernetics IV
Gallente Drone Specialization I

Large Autocannon Specialization II
Large Autocannon Specialization III

Currently training T2 projectiles to IV before Gallente Drones to IV. Just bought myself my first Tornado but have yet to use it in anger.

I picked up my trading again in March and have done well. Managing to make 478 million isk from station trading. Training towards my alt's Thanatos continues, but is many months from completion.

Total Ransoms Received: 550,360,662.30 (~)
Battleclinic Rank: 483 (+6)

Wednesday, 4 April 2012

Pirate Implants

Well the name would imply that all pirates have pirate implants wouldn't it? For Kirith I'd have to disappoint and say that as a pirate he doesn't have pirate implants. Only recently have I started to fly with more than just skill training enhancing implants and even then nothing expensive or extraordinary.

On occasion though I do find myself wondering whether they are worth the huge isk cost investment. Some say they are, some that they are not and some say that they wouldn't or indeed couldn't fly without them.

It worth saying at the outset that there is really no denying that they give you a huge leap in effectiveness, granted that they rarely benefit all ships nor in all circumstances. For example you may end up in a situation where you are in a Crystal clone when flying an armour tanked Hurricane. Those Crystals won't be helping you there.

For me personally, the decision to plump for pirate implants must come down to a cost versus benefit comparison. In my simple math this would then come down to assessing how many more kills am I likely to get because of them that I wouldn't get without, or how many fewer ships would I lose.

Continuing to use myself as the example, lets assume that I buy a set of low-grade snakes for say 600 million (that's a guess). Snakes it can be said affect every ship as they increase speed so we don't need to think about being in the wrong clone for the ship you want to fly. How many more kills or fewer losses should I expect?

So, taking the situations one at a time:

More Kills

As the implants are snakes, they are not going to provide me with more damage output. I will mitigate some damage through a speed tank and thus be able to remain in the fight longer. I will be more likely to control the range the fight is fought with the aim of fighting at the optimal range for my ship. I may be able to chase down that opponent who is trying to escape my clutches.

Fewer Losses

Clearly if I am getting more kills from the factors above then one would hope that you are losing less fights unless your getting killed by rats or something else daft.

In addition I will be able to mitigate damage better through more effective use of a speed tank. Through range control I am better able to be a distance from my opponent and thus mitigate as much of their damage as possible.I will also stand a better chance should I need to attempt to GTFO.


If most of your fights are close fought nail biting affairs which come down to a matter of a last few hit points or who gets the last volley then it is likely that pirate implants are going to help you tip that balance in your favour. If that's not the case then it's going to be less likely that they'll make financial sense.

In my case, as much as I'd love a set of pirate implants I just can't justify them to myself.

Monday, 2 April 2012

Stabber Fleet Issue

For ages I've been talking around getting a Stabber Fleet Issue, for the same length of time and probably longer I hadn't found a fitting that I liked. That changed when my esteemed corp mate Jaxley posted a SFI fit on the Tuskers forum which I quite liked the look of.

Consequently I went to EFT to see what I could tweak to make it more to my liking. About 30 minutes later I had a fit I was happy to give the acid test. My main bone of contention revolved around removing a fitting rig, whilst I accomplished this I was left to scratch my head over what rig to put in it's place.

Whilst the fit certainly does put out massive DPS she's an absolute darling to fly and fun to boot. Getting used to flying with dual-prop at my disposal is different but practice will improve things. I've gotten a couple of kills in her already but nothing that's really tested her mettle.

Here's the fit:

[Stabber Fleet Issue, The Modded J Bomb]

Gyrostabilizer II
Gyrostabilizer II
Gyrostabilizer II
Energized Adaptive Nano Membrane II
Damage Control II
1600mm Reinforced Rolled Tungsten Plates I

10MN Afterburner II
Experimental 10MN MicroWarpdrive
Stasis Webifier II
Fleeting Progressive Warp Scrambler I

Dual 180mm AutoCannon II, Republic Fleet Fusion M
Dual 180mm AutoCannon II, Republic Fleet Fusion M
Dual 180mm AutoCannon II, Republic Fleet Fusion M
Dual 180mm AutoCannon II, Republic Fleet Fusion M
Dual 180mm AutoCannon II, Republic Fleet Fusion M

Medium Projectile Locus Coordinator I
Medium Projectile Collision Accelerator I
Medium Anti-Explosive Pump I

Valkyrie II x3
Warrior II x2