Saturday, July 27, 2013

Ratting Naga = Gank

I log in and almost immediately am told that we have a couple of targets ratting in the C2. Fantastic! I jump into a cloaky Proteus and warp to our static. Our fleet comp is 2 cloaky protues, a devoter, an astarte and an oneiros.

This is overkill for a couple of ratting battlecruisers but that is Ok. The wormhole is out of range of the site they are running so I jump into the wormhole. While I am in transit the scout reports a third party chatting in local. Crap!

Well, there is no reason to be stealthy, we need to see if we can get them before they escape. Our scout decloaks and surprisingly manages to point both ships. Our fleet lands on the scout and we make short work of the Naga and the Drake. Thanks to the bubble of the devoter, we send Zshootz Enaka and E Shootz back to the cloning vat.

We loot and shoot the wrecks and head back home. Now that we have ganked what appears to be a dual-boxing day tripper from k-space. We should see if we can find the third party who thought this was bait.

Saturday, July 20, 2013

The maths of wormholes

I log in to discover that we have active pilots in our static. My corpmates are watching at least 8 pilots and they are fairly active, moving around but not doing anything of consequence. Their wormhole is fairly clean of signatures and anomalies so we can assume they stay busy and keep it clean.

The reports from the scouts indicate that they are aware of our wormhole although they haven't sent anyone through it yet. There are 4 of us and we can count at least 8 piloted ships. However, most of them are in T1 cruisers so we put together a fleet which is designed to fight outnumbered.

Now that we are ready we need them to engage us. To that end, we put a battleship through the wormhole and leave it sitting on the other side for a minute before jumping it back. The brings no response so we have our scout in the wormhole put out probes. This takes a minute but we do get a response this time.

A Manticore shows up at our wormhole and jumps into our home system. The battleship is sitting at zero and an Oneiros is orbiting the wormhole at 60km. Nothing else is visible in system. A second Manticore jumps into the system and immediately jumps back out. During all of this, our battleship pilot has made no move to engage.

We give it a minute and then jump the battleship into the static. This brings an immediate response with several ships warping immediately to the wormhole to engage the hole rolling Armageddon. The battleship jumps back and their small fleet follows with a Caracal Navy Issue, a Caracal or two, an Arbitrator and both stealth bombers. 

As soon as the wormhole flares, we decloak with a Legion and a Proteus and the fight is on. My alt is in a Falcon which I decloak and start applying jams. The Geddon is nuet fit and the enemy realizes quickly that the battleship was bait and that they are outmatched. They jump back through the wormhole and we follow with our T3's but we are only able to lock one of them in the scramble on the opposite side. Boo!

Jeromis' Arbitrator goes down quickly with the assistance of a bomb from one of his corpmates. He instantly warps his pod out and we loot the wreck before jumping back into our home system. In a couple of minutes I start talking to one of the members. Since most of them are flying T1 ships, I ask if they would be interested in a fleet engagement limited to T1 cruisers. They say sure so we start preparing.

A couple more members have shown up at this point bringing our total number of online pilots to 5 leaving us outnumbered. The wormhole is crit and we are taking bets on whether they will jump it or not. With almost everyone believing they will not jump the wormhole.

Using alts we are able to field 3 Moa's, a Vexor, and a Blackbird with our mains. In addition, we have a Scythe, a second Blackbird and a remote sensor boosting Blackbird with alts. The enemy has a Caracal Navy Issue, 2 Bellicose, 2 Caracal, 1 Blackbird, 2 Scythes and a Talwar. 

I notify them that we are at the wormhole and ready for them to jump when ready. They say Ok and jump their fleet into our system. Remember that crit wormhole? We live in a C5 static C2 which is a small hole with only 1B in total allowed mass. They knew it was crit, but they also knew there had only been 3 cruisers and a couple of bombers through it from the point it went crit. Thinking there was plenty of mass left for their cruiser fleet, they jumped in and got everything but the second Scythe in before it collapsed. 

The fight is on!!!

I call primary on their Blackbird who manages to jam one of our Blackbirds but gets jammed in return by the other Blackbird we have. The enemy Blackbird goes down fairly quickly and I call primary on the Scythe. The Scythe doesn't last long which leaves them without support. At this point, we lose our remote sensor boosting Blackbird since the pilot was dual boxing and forgot to warp the ship out once the fight was engaged. We also lose our first Moa as we are killing the first Bellicose.

At this point, they are putting a lot of DPS on my Moa and I am deep into shields. I call for primary on the Caracal Navy. With 15% left on my shields, I overheat my guns and my shields. I am still going down so I ask for overheated reps from the Scythe and all DPS ships to overheat their weapons. The Caracal Navy goes down and the overheated reps begin bringing my shields back up. The rest is mop up until only the Talwar is left. He is kiting all over the place and we can't get in range of him so I ask for a sniping ship to take him out leaving their entire fleet sitting on the field in pods.

These guys jumped in and gave us a good fight, even though it was a crit wormhole, so we agree to scan them back to k-space instead of podding them and send a scout looking for a route. Our new static has a low sec static which ends up being 2 jumps from high sec near Hek. We escort the fleet of pods to the low sec system and they head home.

This has been one of the most entertaining fights I have had in a long time. Many of them appear to be fairly new players but they were willing to fight. They made no effort to run and chose to fight to the last man. Hats off to a great group of players. Have fun and fly dangerous!

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Engaging a fleet in wormhole space

I log in to find one of our scouts 20 jumps away down a chain. Not really, but there were quite a few wormholes mapped out and all of them had 3+ connecting wormholes. He was 5 jumps away down the chain reporting activity in what we were calling c2b.

(impressive paint skills below)
The corp living in c2b had 7-8 active pilots. Most of them were in drakes and the scout thought he may have interrupted their site running. We grabbed some armor ships and a couple of us moved up to c2a in preparation of trying to engage them. The rest of our fleet was still assembling when the hostile group warped from the tower with a Broadsword, Astarte and innumerable drakes.

We fell back to the c2a -> c3a wormhole to see what they were going to do and I had the second pilot fall back to the c3a > c2s wormhole when they jumped into the c2a. I stayed in the c2a and waited until they warped on grid with me before warping to a nearby planet and making a safe in route.

I landed at the planet and sure enough about the time I hit warp back to my safe, they landed several ships on me. This told me quickly that they were looking for a fight. In the meantime, the rest of our fleet had gotten organized.

Our fleet comp consisted of 1 Buzzard (go Kalseth!), 1 Armageddon, 2 Prophecies, 2 Oneiros and a Falcon. Since I was being actively chased, I passed fleet command off and the call was made to jump into c2a. The Broadsword and 2 drakes were sitting on the wormhole. With the Astarte and 2 Drakes chasing me. I'm not sure how innumerable drakes became 4 but it seems like a fuzzy math kinda day.

At this point, I was in warp to the outer planet (68 AU) away so I turned and headed back to the wormhole as soon as I landed. By the time I landed, their full fleet of 6 ships was on the wormhole.They killed our Falcon as soon as it decloaked. Jumping it into the middle of fleet engagement on a wormhole was a mistake on our part. That call should never have been made. 

One drake went down before I landed and I started locking up the Astarte. The secondary was called as another Drake and since I was slightly out of range on the Astarte, I put my point on the second Drake just in time to see the Broadsword and 1 Drake jump out. What? There is no longer a bubble on field.

They are bailing! Spread points! Ummm..... That call should probably have been made earlier since I now have to wait out the cycle for my jammer. Get the Astarte! Of course the rest of their fleet now warps off leaving the second Drake pilot to his fate. 

We had the Broadsword and Drake trapped for a while in the c2s, but ultimately got bored and headed home. This was a good fight! However, the enemy fleet bailed as soon as they saw the second Oneiros uncloak on the wormhole.

Saturday, July 6, 2013

MOAR Lowsec

I login to discover that we have two outbound C140s to low-sec. It has been a couple of weeks since we roamed around (i.e. lost ships) in low sec and the sirens call cannot be ignored.

After some debate, we decide to go armor and field a rag tag fleet with a Brutix, Navy Omen, Arazu, Blackbird and an Exequror and a pilot who is AFK in system in an unknown cloaky ship. We jump into the low sec and I warp to the first gate where I land on top of a Typhoon who warps off before my warp engines disengage.

I track his direction and follow as quickly as I can to one of the other gates in system just in time to see him disappear through the gate. Odd! It is almost as if he wanted me to see him. BAIT! According to the map of the area I have sitting in front of me, the route he jumped only has 2 systems and then becomes a dead end.

Expecting him to come back that way in a few minutes and most likely with friends, we setup on the gate. Sure enough, in about 3-4 minutes, he jumps back in system. At the same time, our AFK pilot returns and we discover he is in a Tengu.  We engage the Typhoon and sure enough local spikes with 4-5 additional people. A quick check shows they are his friends. WooHoo! We are going to get a fight. Based on local, it will be a 5v5 on the gate. This should be fun!

We have the Typhoon heading into structure as his mates arrive on the field in a Raven, Tempest, Stabber Fleet Issue and a Cynabal. The Typhoon pilot jumps back to the other side of the gate as his friends pour the DPS on my Brutix. I call the Cynabal as the second target which was probably the third or fourth mistake I made in this engagement. :P

The Exequror is doing a fairly good job of keeping me alive, and the enemy fleet decides to go after the blackbird and the exequror. Both of these pilots are too close which was another of the mistakes I made as I called for them to warp in. In spite of overheating all reps on the Exequror, the Blackbird falls and of course the Exequror is next. 

In the meantime, my Brutix also goes down leaving our Navy Omen pilot on the field by himself. Three of the enemy pilots are approaching structure with the Typhoon back on the field as the Cynabal falls and shortly thereafter our Omen Navy pilot goes down as well.

The Tengu pilot wisely decided to stay out of the fight. In the end, they cleared us off the field and we were only able to take one of them down. The engagement results are linked here. According to the kill report, we lost 380M while destroying 275M. Even though we lost the engagement, it was fun and we learned a number of things.

Thanks for the great 5v5 from Wolfsbrigade!