Machariels are awesome

Report from OPSRD0019

“Coming out of warp in 3, 2, 1. Targets confirmed, start locking the frigates and pull range. Engage the frigates as they are locked, don’t let them get too close.”

As the crew confirmed and followed out the orders, Jon sat down in to his captain’s seat and pulled up the information on his fleet member, who had just exited warp and was deploying sentries. Jon laughed and called over Leeroy.

“Ugly ships those things, don’t you agree?”

“What, the space potato? Yeah, form may follow function, but that thing is just hideous.”

“Enemy frigates are all destroyed sir!” came the shout from the gunnery sergeant. “Enemy cruisers are being engaged.”

“Good work, how many did we kill?”

“We got the majority sir, due to being on field first, but our friend in the Dominix is very adept at killing frigates, especially with the much shorter rate of fire of his sentries.”

“Good to know. Well, let’s kill the rest of the rats, show the potato who’s the boss.” Turning to Leeroy, Jon smiled. “It may be hideous, but I’m glad it’s on our side. I’ve seen the fit for that ship, and it’s stupidly over-tanked. That said, all that guys ships are over-tanked, he lost a Machariel around a year ago because it wasn’t tanked well enough, so he tends to over-compensate to make sure it doesn’t happen again. He tried to get me to armour tank this Mach, or at least stick an XL shield booster on it, cap stable even. It would take a massive gank squad to kill it, but it would have made this ship anaemic on the damage front.”

“Ouch. While this tank may not hold up against a full-rooms worth of damage at close range, that is the reason that we sit over 40km from most targets and shoot them down. No need for a large tank if the rats can’t hit us, and, as this fit isn’t blingy, we don’t have to worry too much about gankers. If they do decide they want to kill us though, that’s what D-Scan and bookmarks are for. It’s hard to kill someone if you can’t catch them.” Jon grinned as he remembered his discussion with some other pilots about the viability of ganking, and how much a fit had to be worth before someone decided it was economically viable to try and kill the ship. It came out at around 600-700 million ISK worth of fittings before his Machariel was deemed valuable enough to kill, and Jon had made sure that his fitting was nowhere near as expensive as that.

As the last enemy cruiser was eliminated, and the crew instructed to start taking out the battleships, Jon relaxed and thought back on what had transpired over the last week. Rumours had started flying about Against All Authorities, the alliance that S0uthern Comforts was a part of, was fail-cascading, unable to withstand the combined onslaught of what was left of the N3PL coalition and the new HERO coaltion. S0CO had issued a memo to all pilots a few weeks ago to pull all non-essential ships and equipment out of Catch, and Jon had followed this order, leaving only a few Stilettos and a Jaguar in nullsec. Fleets were constantly going out, harassing Provi-block and HERO mainly, but participation numbers were low and a set of new wardecs from highsec ‘merc’ groups had started to hinder the movement of goods meant for the front-lines, and put a halt on making ISK for Jon, with all PvE gear pulled out of null the only options for making ISK was running missions in highsec, which wasn’t safe to do in a slow battleship with war-targets around.

After having a meeting with the senior members of his crew, and talking to some friends that were no longer a part of S0CO, having left for greener pastures, Jon decided that he was going to do the same thing. Pulling his surviving Stilettos and the Jaguar back to highsec, Jon sent a mail to S0CO leadership, thanking them for the fun he had had in nullsec, and wished them well for their future endeavours. He then removed himself from the corp, contacted his mate who was wanting to raise his standings with the Brutor tribe so he could get a hold of some of those wonderful jump clones, and had been killing rats with extreme prejudice since.

“Last rat is nearly dead sir.” Leeroys exclamation startled Jon out of his reverie, and reminded him that he needed to keep his head in the game, or he was liable to get this ship, and his crew, blown and killed respectively. While he trusted in his crews abilities, and the Machariels ability to out-pace nearly all enemy ships cruiser sized and above, weirder things had happened if half the pub stories were true.

“Good job, that mission only took 15 minutes. Send our congratulations for a job well done to our friend in the potato and head back to station.”

****
I have left S0CO, and with them -A-. Yes, there will be the people saying that -A- is shit, and while that may be true, fleet participation took a huge hit when one of the FC’s left, I had fun while with them. I was privy to some information that I don’t believe has been leaked yet (at least not publicly) before I left, and I hope -A- manages to survive. As for S0CO, I had an awesome time with them, great bunch of guys to hang out with, even if a lot of them didn’t seem to log into Eve often, there was always a bunch on TS happy to talk. I wish them the best of luck, and, who knows. I may end up going back to them and sending in an application in a few months if I feel like sticking my foot back into nullsec.

Oh, and Machariels are awesome, and I shall love them even more when the summer expansion comes out and they get an increased warp speed and warp acceleration.

Roam the skies,
Jon

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It’s arrived

Report from OPSRD0015

‘It’s here, it’s here. It’s finally actually here.’ Jon did a little jig in his cabin before walking out to his hanger. The news that the Maelstrom had finally been delivered spread quickly around the station, and the crew had gathered near the boarding walkway, waiting to be allowed aboard.

‘Leeroy, where are you?’ Jon sent out a message as he walked up the viewing platform to view the whole ship. It had been a few weeks since he had seen a ship larger than a Rupture, and seeing the straight and deadly lines of the Maelstrom made Jon remember exactly why he had chosen to become a capsuleer. The Machariel may have more utility, the Domi might be a better choice for range control and ignoring tracking disrupters, T3’s may be brick tanks, but the Maelstrom was Jon’s favourite.

‘I am at the entrance sir, waiting for the captain to board.’ Leeroy’s response flashed up for Jon to see, and shook him out of his revere. Shaking his head and regaining focus on what he was doing, Jon marched off to the entrance, seeing Leeroy and the other senior crew standing at attention as Jon got closer.

Boarding the ship with the crew filing on behind him, Jon got status updates from all the head-of-departments. After receiving reports that all systems were installed and operational, the order went out for all hands to prepare for undocking. Checking the intelligence channels and local for potential threats and finding none, Jon ordered the ship to undock for its maiden voyage. After doing some manoeuvres and warp testing, and making sure that all the navigational tools were working as planned, Jon chose a low class anomaly that should be easy to clear and ordered for the ship to be warped there, telling the gunnery crews to get in position and ready for the upcoming fight.

‘When we land, lock up the frigates and kill them A.S.A.P. ‘Jon ordered as the ship slowed down in preparation to exit warp. ‘We will be around 60km away from them, so they will be easy kills.’

As the ship exited warp and the ‘rats appeared in space, the sound of the computers targeting the enemy ships began. The squealing noise that occurred when someone locked and opened fire on our ship rang out shortly afterwards, with the enemy battlecruiser and battleships opening fire on us.

As the enemy frigates got systematically destroyed, with each volley killing another ship, the order went out to start locking up the cruisers and battlecruisers. Within a few short minutes all the small ships were destroyed, with only the battleships left to pose a problem. Half an hour passed as we killed the battleships, and the resulting waves afterwards. Once the anomaly was finished Jon ordered the ship to head back to station and dock up. All the crew were congratulated by Jon and the senior crew for doing their job well.

‘You enjoy that sir?’ Jon swung around as Leeroy knocked on his cabin door.

‘I certainly did. Frigates and cruisers are fun to pilot, but battleships are where my heart lies, especially with the Maelstrom. I just hope that our new alliance brings back arty Mael fleets once/if the powers-that-be change the laws pertaining to drone assist systems and whatever else they’re wanting to do with them.’

‘What do you think of those changes sir?’

‘If it means my Maelstrom will be accepted into fleets then I can’t wait for the change. Yes, incursion fleets will have to have a few more drone boats, or find a new way to deal with the frigates, maybe T3’s, but I personally detest drones as a weapon system. I can’t pin a reason on it, but they just seem…cheap. We use light drones if frigates get too close for our guns to hit, and mediums to help kill the enemy battleships that little bit faster, but I want my damage to be coming from my cannons, not some flimsy piece of metal flying around in space.’

‘In rust we trust? It’s worked for us so far.’ Leeroy grinned, and headed off towards his own cabin.

****
My Maelstrom finally arrived, and I can start earning ISK again. Also started back at uni last week, so I’m not exactly active at the moment.

Roam the skies,
Jon.

A DED site

Report from OPSRD0013 (Omnipresent Ship Recording Device #0013)

 

After checking that all the crew were ready and the station personal were ready to accept the ships departure, Jon gave the order the undock. As the Hurricane glided out of the station into the emptiness of Hotrardik, the scanning crew were ordered to start probing out and identifying the signatures while the rest of the crew did the daily checks and navigation practice. In a short time the scanners had locked down an anomaly full of asteroids and a couple of sites that appeared to be inhabited by Angel Cartel pirates. The crew then got down to work pin-pointing and analysing the one remaining signature that was showing up. As this process was happening Jon realised that his crew needed a lot more practice in scanning, they were under-skilled and had very little experience in this field.

“Scanning complete sir” shouted out one of the ensigns. Jon walked over to the display and looked at the data. It appeared to be a DED site, rating: 4/10. After contemplating his next move, Jon orders the navigation crew to align and warp to the site. As the ship entered warp, his second in command, Leeroy, asked for a quick word.

“Are you crazy sir?” was the first sentence out of Leeroy’s mouth. “We aren’t setup for large scale action. Our fittings are all wrong, we need to be in a fleet if we are going to go in with this lack of shielding. We have a ship perfect for this six jumps away, it’s the same Hurricane hull, but it’s setup for taking loads of damage without relying on backup”.

Jon looked at Leeroy, considering his reply. “We will be perfectly fine. We have taken similarly fitted ships, smaller hulls may I add, to similar sized fights and walked out with no damage and lots of ISK and loot. I don’t see why this fight would be any different.”

“Will all due respect sir, we have no idea what is in that area. We have never seen a signature like this before, and we have never received a DED warning saying that it’s rated 4/10, whatever that means.”

Jon briefly considered this, turned to the navigation officer, and ordered to align down the gate and warp as soon as we were up to speed. “We’ll see what happens won’t we?” asked Jon to no-one in particular.

Little did Jon know that at the end of the gate was a veritable armada of all sizes of ships from frigates to battle-cruisers. As the Hurricane landed 45km from the blob of enemy ships, Leeroy looked at Jon, looked at the screen, looked back at Jon and quickly walked to his battle-station in the gunnery room. The battle started quickly, with enemy frigates burning to get under the guns. Drones were deployed and started to shoot down the frigates at a quick rate, but the frigates showed no signs of giving up. While the frigates were doing their dance of death, the larger enemy ships moved to their optimal ranges and started to hammer on the shields. As the warning alarms started to sound Jon knew that Leeroy was indeed correct, a differently fit ship was needed.

“Align to the station! Keep firing until we enter warp, keep the drones on nearby targets.” As the ship pulled the tightest turn that it could, Jon calculated that 3 more ships could be killed before the shields were in danger of collapsing. As the last frigate on field was destroyed all drones were recalled into the drone bay, and the turrets finished off the last cruiser within range. “Warp to the station” ordered Jon, “Leeroy, a word.”

“Yes sir?”

“You were correct. I apologize for ignoring your warnings. Was any damage done to the ship?”

“No damage done to the ship sir, all drones are in perfect order as well. No worries about the other matter. What’s the plan now?”

Jon smiled slyly. “I believe you said we had a ship capable of taking this amount of damage six jumps away?”

“That we do, in Frarn” smiled Leeroy.

“Then we are going to Frarn.” Turning to the ship intercom, Jon informed the whole crew on what was happening. “All crew, we are going to Frarn and picking up a different ship for that site. It is still a Hurricane hull, so all current crew will be coming across.”

A few minutes later the crew is happy and settled into the new Hurricane and in warp to the gate. Landing on the gate, the ship was ordered to jump in right away, and upon landing set to work clearing the remaining ships. Once the remaining stragglers were wiped out we went through gate to the second area of the site. As soon as the ship landed we received huge damage, and a Claymore was detected in site. Ordering distance to be put between our ship and the Claymore, Jon started calling primaries and assigning drone targets, leaving Leeroy to keep an eye on the shields, which were rapidly disappearing. As the incoming fire dropped off as the enemy ships were destroyed, and the shields started to regenerate themselves, the shields stabilized at around 60%, enough to be comfortable with. Once all the ships bar the Claymore were destroyed, Jon gave the order to close range and engage with everything. Drones pelted the sides of the enemy battle-cruiser, auto-cannons rained phased plasma at close range, and the lone missile launcher spewed out missiles as fast as they could be loaded and launched. Taking a beating, the Claymore finally died, and Jon ordered for the drones to be recalled and guns reloaded.

“Take us to the wreckage, I want to see what it was carrying” ordered Jon to the navigators.

Arriving at the cargo bay, he was greeted by all the engineers and scientists of the ship already crowded around two of the items that the Claymore had been carrying. “What did we get?” asked Jon, knowing that they must be worthwhile to have the normally clean-freak scientists in the cargo bay.

“It’s…deadspace. Sir.” replied one of the engineers. “This one is useless for how we fit our ships” he said, pointing to a Gistum C-Type amplifier, “but this one, well, it’s a gem. I can only think of one ship of yours on which this would deserve to go on, the Machariel.” Jon was amazed; it was a Gistum C-Type adaptive invuln field. Ordering the ship to turn around and dock up, Jon called the station and ordered the Machariel to be prepared for a fitting change, just a quick upgrade was what the station personal were told. As soon as the ship was docked, Jon put Leeroy in charge of sorting out the Hurricane and running the salvage mission of the sites, while Jon oversaw the installation of the new module, which on field testing gave the ship over 5000 more EHP than what it had before.

 

****

My first deadspace module, I am very happy.

I am moving to nullsec shortly, I’ll be helping USURP out against the BNI with the rest of my alliance. My poor Machariel might be waiting a while before it gets to show off its bling in public.

On the note of how I am going to be writing my blogs from now on, I think the third person works for me the best (The number of the OPSRD is how many ships I’ve lost, not including capsules)

Roam the skies,

Jon.

A slow week in New Eden

Well, it has been a relatively boring week so far in New Eden for me. With the holidays drawing to a close and the university semester gearing up to start I’ve been slowly reducing my presence online as I get ready to continue my studies.

What have I done with my time online? Sadly I haven’t gone on any more roams, instead I have spent my time making and spending ISK. I managed to make quite a nice profit selling my concord LP for over 1600ISK/LP, which gave me around 1billion ISK in profit with the amount of LP I cashed in. While this may not be a lot for quite a few players, it means that my Machariel has finally paid itself off, and I can start to ‘turn a profit’ as it is from running incursions. Talking about incursions, I have also run a few sites with ‘The Vahalla Project’. While this group may not be the fastest at running sites, compared to groups like ISN, TVP actually allows people that don’t have T2 guns, and they are quite a friendly bunch. Their fleet comms can get a bit…interesting…at times, but I personally love flying with them, they are a great bunch of people, and they liven up what would otherwise be a horribly boring grind for ISK.

In other PvE related news, I tried running some highsec combat sites. I will regularly do the anoms that show up automatically without needing to be scanned down if I notice them and I’m in a PvE capable ship (Any combat ship for highsec, frigates are fun). These sites aren’t too bad for bounties, at least for the time needed to clear them, and if you’re lucky and get a faction spawn you can be looking at a 50million ISK or more module being dropped, which is nice. After scanning down some signatures and getting a couple of combat sites locked down I decided that these would be fun to clear, and that there would hopefully be a faction spawn in one of them. Warping to the first one in my Hurricane, I was quite dismayed at being informed that it was rookie ships and frigates only. Warping to the second one informed me that only frigates and destroyers were allowed to take the gate.

A few minutes later I’m in a Firetail entering the first site. After quickly clearing the site I checked the loot and got some weird crystal type structure that can be reprocessed into a decent amount of minerals, but nothing else worthwhile. The second site being the same, I am of the opinion that highsec combat sites aren’t worth it except as a last resort, especially with my scanning skills being what was required for the tutorial missions, and nothing more.

I also managed to spend most of the ISK that I gained from selling the LP, with over 600million ISK leaving my wallet to assorted manufacturers of ships and modules. I now have 11 ships ranging from frigates to battlecruisers waiting to be taken down to a nullsec system that I won’t be naming for now. Hopefully this deployment results in a lot of kills and not too many deaths, though I do imagine that none of these ships will be coming back to a nice highsec retirement, if for nothing else but the cost of getting ships to and from null makes it a one-way trip for most of my ships. There is at least one other person in my corp who is active around my timezone and is keen for PvP, so I believe that I’ll be going out slightly regularly looking for fights when I’m in nullsec.

I’m certainly hoping that my Eve playing doesn’t get in the way of my studies this year, otherwise I know which one will be getting reduced, and that isn’t my studies.

****

Roam the skies,
Jon.