Monday, 4 February 2013

sometimes you just get lucky

After losing a wolf, 2 rifters and a pod for no gain at all on Friday night, I decided to take my Thrasher out on Saturday and headed to Elarel, just so I'd be around to give some support for my PI alt Sunday morning (always nice to have an extra set of eyes around, though to be honest he's never had any trouble getting in and out of lowsec, if you are sensible and take precautions, low-sec is not that scary). I took a look in a couple of fw plexes on the way but got no action.

I hung around in Elarel for a few minutes, there were 7 others in local. At one point I did a random warp to the sun and landed 30Km from a Helios with probes out, he pulled in his probes and legged it before I reached him.

Then I saw a Megathron Navy Issue show up on D-scan, along with a Hurricane and a Loki. After a bit of narrowing down I realised that the MNI was on it's own and looked to be at 5% of a POCO, so off I warped expecting him to be gone by the time I got there.

Now a Megathron at the hands of a competent pilot should easily cope with a single lowly destroyer - a Megathron Navy Issue is more expensive, has extra low slot, more tank ability and can field more drones

"The Navy Megathron is a simple upgrade on the regular Megathron. It has an additional low slot, allowing for more tank or an extra damage module, more CPU and powergrid and more base tank. Probably most usefully, it also has an expanded drone bay, allowing it to carry a heavy drone flight and a medium or light drone flight." - EVE Uni Wiki

I suspected that I was doomed to failure - he'd either warp off, or his mates would swiftly turn up and explode me, but if you don't try you'll never know so I activated all my offensive mods and warped to the POCO.

I landed 20Km from him at the POCO, just him and his probes (?!), I activated my AB and hit my 'orbit @500' button fully expecting him to warp off any second. He pulled in probes and then just sat there  .

As soon as I got in range I landed web, scram, turned on my ACs, then my NOS, checking Dscan I see a Loki and a Cane. Fully expecting drones at any second to be swiftly followed by death by Loki & Cane I keep my guns hot, keeping smashing dscan and let Alliance chat know what's going on.

No drones and his shields are down to 25%, so I turn the heat off my guns at about 50% damage. Shields down, still no drones, Loki & Cane still on scan, nothing in local chat, plenty of encouragement from Alliance chat.

Still no drones, Loki & Can still on scan, MNI armour at 50% I risk a short pulse of heat to my guns, and he dips into structure. Much encouragement from Alliance chat, I'm starting to think I may have a chance, but the Loki & Cane are still lurking around somewhere.

Then as he drops below 40% structure the MNI pilot launches drones, a quick shows them as T1, so I ignore them and risk a little more heat to my guns which are now 80% damaged.

My shields are now taking damage from the drones, but I've a 400mm plate fitted, so not too worried yet.

MNI hull is at 16% when the Cane lands 20Km away I immediately heat my guns again as the drones finally start to nibble at my armour. Cane heads in our direction, but MNI goes BOOM! I quickly grab the loot, ignore the pod and warp off to much cheering from Alliance chat.

The unfortunate pilot is then podded by the Cane. I posted the KM in local to much amusement and after a quick stop to catch my breath in a safe, I dropped my loot in a station - turns out the loot gods hate me, but 35 mill and a dead MNI isn't to be sniffed at.

I did nothing spectacular nor out of the ordinary, I just got lucky.  The Megathron Navy Issue pilot was relatively new, I'm assuming he must have bought Plex, cashed them in for Isk and splurged on an expensive ship with expensive mods thinking that would make him safe in low sec.

Anyone who spends 5 mins reading about EVE should know better than that.

Friday, 14 September 2012

If you look for trouble, sometimes you find it!

I've been starting to run low on ships out in Essence, so decided to splurge a load of iskies on a bunch of Rifters & Thrashers.  I bought & fitted 30-odd Thrashers and about 40 Rifters and then shipped half to Essence and half to Molden Heath.

I then jumped back up to Essence last night and went looking for a fight or two.

First I took out a Rifter - jumped into Aeschee and saw a flashy red Merlin approaching the gate.  I immediately locked him up, set my cannons to OH and piled in.  Fight lasted quite a while, my armour repper was screaming and spitting almost as much fire as my cannons, but was doing a sterling job of keeping me alive, but I wasn't able to break his shield.  Eventually I mistimed a cap injection and it was all over.

GFs were exchanged and off I went to re-ship.

2 mins later I was back in space, this time in a Thrasher, couple of jumps and I landed at the sun in Lisbaetanne followed almost immediately by a Machariel battleship and that was that!

Laou Tzu rightly took the piss and I lol'd.  Pretty sure I was one-shotted.

Quite an opening 10mins for my EVE session.

A quick re-ship back into a Rifter and off I went again.  This time I decided to engage an Atron.  But not for long .  The Atron pilot then tried to ransom my pod for 12 million.  I opted for the express ride home.

Clone updated, I jumped back into a Thrasher and headed back out, this time I found no-takers and after 45 mins or so I decided to clone jump down to Molden Heath as we have a war on.

Again in a Thrasher I spotted a couple of war targets, but as they were in a Rupture and an Omen I decided to give them a wide berth, no point senselessly throwing ships away, I'd done enough of that already.

Critique of the losses above -

Merlin fight - Merlin pilot was twice my age, with a decent looking killboard.  If I'd stopped to think I probably wouldn't have engaged him.  However it was a really good fight (even though I didn't win), I suspect he may have been using ASBs, if I hadn't mistimed my cap injection I may have outlasted his ASB charges.  But I didn't, if I only started fights I knew I would win, life would be pretty dull (and I'd have a lot fewer fights).

 Machariel fight - pfft, I was stupid, landed at the sun, didn't align out in case anyone unsavoury dropped in, total noob error.  I had no chance against a battleship landing 20Km away.   Laou Tzu even said that he just made a random jump. Pretty much complete fail on my part. I lol'd and moved on.

Atron fight - I was desperate for a fight, again should have checked the pilot out first.  He is a much more experienced pilot.  Fight wasn't so good, didn't last very long I was simply outclassed.

So, my hangar isn't as full as it was, but some days you win, others you lose.  At least I got some fights, and that's what counts.

Friday, 31 August 2012

Chuffed...and certainly lived up to the Smoking Rifter name

Over a month since my last post here, tsk, tsk.  I've been busy, had a few fights here and there, won some, lost some, finally seem to have curbed my tendency to rush into fights with insane odds stacked against me, so some progress.

Last night I decided to roam in a different direction so set off from Vitrauze towards Stacmon in my Super Rifter rifter, first making sure I had Regular & Barrage ammo, plus some repair paste in my hold and as many Cap boosters as I could fit in.

Route was only about 12 jumps, all low-sec so I was hoping for some fights - I'd picked Stacmon as I remembered I had a stash of implants that would improve my autocannons damage output, every little helps.

I found a few likely targets en route to Stacmon, but they were either hiding in stations or else were plex runners who did in fact run as soon as I entered the plex.

Techs in the station in Stacmon did their work and with my new implant buzzing in my head (are they meant to buzz? ) I headed back to Vitrauze.

Again, I played a bit of cat & mouse with a couple of prospective targets, but didn't get any fights (damm people were paying attention to their Overviews last night) until I reached Melmaniel.

I saw that there was an Atron and an Executioner at a plex.  There was a fairly young pilot in charge of the Atron, but a much older and more experienced pilot in the Executioner.  I was hoping they would be too busy with each other to notice me when I landed, my plan was to go after the Executioner first.

I land at the plex and see that they are not fighting each other, uh-oh, oh well - I fire up the afterburners and head for the Executioner only to see the Atron warp off!

Executioner locks me up and gets point so I open up my ACs.  I'm out of range of my scam and nos, but I'm taking down his shields.

My shields are also dropping and I can't seem to get closer than about 9k, time to switch ammo, so 10 seconds of no firing from me, time to fire up the armour repairer!

Ammo loaded I open up on the Executioner again, my repper is keeping up, remembering wise words from MB "Keep the repper screaming!" I have it overheating, as are my guns , I notice my cap is almost gone so fire off a cap booster, and then notice that the Atron is back!

no idea how long he'd been there, but he was only 4k away and firing into me, so I target him and get my nos working, then switch my guns to the new target.

Keep my cap going, get the booster loaded, we're out of charges, get them from cargo, Atron's armour now going down, keep up the pressure!

I dip into structure, booster charges loaded, one fired off, repper back to full screaming pelt again, smoke starting to fill my cockpit BOOM!, quick check it wasn't me it was the Atron, ignore the capsule, switch guns to Executioner, he's closer, get the nos on him and the scram, we're seriously into structure now, fire off another booster, keep that repper going!


it's not me, whew, that was close.  More hits to what little armour I have left covering my almost none existent hull ( I swear I can see stars - though that may be due to all the smoke), we're taking hits from a plex rat, fuck, time to go.  Fingers crossed that the hull will hold together I warp off to a safe spot and assess the damage.

13% structure left, armour coming back up, Damage Control 78% heat damage, Guns almost burnt out, nos, almost burnt out, repper almost burnt out, smoke everywhere, but 1 confirmed Atron Kill and 1 confirmed Executioner Kill  GFs exchanged in local with the Executioner pilot, I'm a very happy capsuleer!

Then I realise that the Executioner opened up on me first!  Concord don't mind if you defend yourself, whatever your previous intentions, so the local police aren't even looking for me - time to find a station for repairs, then out again, back to plex and collect my loot - only a couple of million worth, but it all helps!

Really chuffed with my performance in this fight, I managed to keep my head, switch ammo, manage my cap booster manually, switch targets effectively and kept the repper screaming.  I'm sure that my implant helped too and may well have made the difference, when fights are this close every little helps.

Monday, 23 July 2012

Dry Spell....over

I had been having some successes in PvP, mainly against pilots of similar age, though a couple of times I went 1v1 against much older & more experienced opponents and although I didn't win, the fights were pretty dam close.

I've written before about how I keep getting distracted by PI, Exploring, Manufacturing etc or else jump into fights that I know I'm unlikely to win and as a consequence my K:D ratio was pretty bad (not an issue for R1FTA, but it did bother me).

Steps to try an improve things actually saw things get worse as I shipped out to the Placid region.

In fact I went a little over 5 weeks without a single kill to my name!  And this wasn't 5 weeks of me not being logged in, during that same period I lost 12 ships and 2 pods (1 to a gatecamp, 1 to a Uni 10:1 Eve Uni blob).

I was beginning to wonder if PVP was for me.  I had a little moan to my corpmates (now Alliance mates actually since we created the Black Dragon Fighting Society as a R1FTA feeder corp), and I decided that if I couldn't get a kill in a few more days then I should think about doing something else.

Next day I logged in to see alliance chat had some comments from DARKSTAR POWNYOUALL about a gatecamp of some T3 ships and who wanted in?!?

DARKSTAR is renowned for his gun-ho attitude and for pulling off what most people would consider pretty impossible.

So I x'ed up in my Rifter and then sat about near the destination system whilst we all waited for an update.

10 mins later we get he call to warp in and engage the Rapier, which we did, we then shifted our focus to 1st Tengu though I'd strayed a liitle too far away from the ships hull and was soon toasted by the 2nd Tengu. Though he died to the remaining couple of R1FTAs.

I was very pleased with breaking my dryspell, especially with such nice killmails :)

I then teamed up with Miss Carry the next day when she'd grabbed a Firetail  I then shamelessly whored (10 jumps!) on a Drake  that a corpmate had pointed but couldn't kill on his own (I accidentally contributed to the kill of that guys capsule too when I targetted his pod to stop it warping off and forgot my guns were still hot).

A few days later I was challenged to a 1v1 Rifter duel which I duly accepted and won. Next day a coprmate was probing down a Thorax in next system and wondered if anyone else wanted in, I did. The day after a call went up in alliance chat 'Geddon pointed!' - I was 2 jumps out so x-ed up and after some confusion over who received the mail or whether the guy had self destructed, Ethan found the killmail and we celebrated!

Finally, I was out hunting with a new fit as recommended by DARKSTAR and MB when I spotted a Catalyst on dscan.  He seemed to be jumping about but I was patient and kept shifting and scanning.  I then noticed that Rifter and a Slicer had entered system.  I decided to keep trying for the Catalyst and narrowed him down to a belt.

I warped to the belt but as I landed he warped out - I scanned the location he's warped to and picked up the rifter and slicer there too.  I decided not to follow and to see if I could track him down on his own again.  2 mins later the Cat lands about 20km from me and immediately targets me - it's on!

I fired up my AB and headed in his direction, his opening salvo reduced my shields by about 25%, but by then I had closed to short range, established a point and opened up with my guns and neut.  Then the rifter landed, quickly followed by another ship (I'm assuming it was the Slicer, but I was a tad distracted).  knowing I was probably doomed I determined to take out the Cat and OHd my guns and fired my repper up - almost too late as my final armour gave out and I dropped to about 75% hull!  however without plates my repper pretty much fully restored my armour on a single cycle just as the Cat went boom!, I then turned my attention to the Rifter as the 3rd ship warped off when the Cat blew up, I managed to land a few shots but hadn't established point and he warped out too!

I through a gf into local, but everyone else stayed silent :(

So from a 5 week dry spell to 9 kills doing 2.63 Billion isk worth of damage for a total loss of 9 ships totaling 0.05 Billion isk.

Wednesday, 4 July 2012

My Rifter Plan progress

Back in January I wrote that I was adopting The Rifter Plan, blatanlty ripped off from Kirith Darkblade.

As it's been a few months, I thought I'd post an update;

Rifter Plan update

target comes first in white, my current level is in blue

 - Electronics V    V
 - Propulsion Jamming V   IV
 - Signature Analysis V    V

 - Energy Management V    IV
 - Energy Systems Operation V    V
 - Engineering V    V
 - Shield Management V    III
 - Shield Operation V    V
 - Tactical Shield Manipulation V    IV

 - Advanced Weapon Upgrades V    0
 - Gunnery V    V
 - Motion Prediction V    III
 - Rapid Firing V    V
 - Sharpshooter V    V
 - Small Autocannon Specialisation V    V
 - Small Projectile Turret V    V
 - Surgical Strike V    IV
 - Trajectory Analysis V    IV
 - Weapon Upgrades V    IV

 - Hull Upgrades V    V
 - Jury Rigging III   III
 - Mechanic V    V
 - Projectile Weapon Rigging V    III
 - Repair Systems V    V

Missile Launcher Operation
 - Missile Bombardment V    II
 - Missile Launcher Operation V    V
 - Missile Projection V    III
 - Rapid Launch V    III
 - Rocket Specialisation V    0
 - Target Navigation Prediction V    III
 - Warhead Upgrades V    III

 - Acceleration Control V    III
 - Afterburner V    V
 - Evasive Maneuvering V    III
 - Fuel Conservation V    III
 - Navigation V    V
 - Warp Drive Operation V    III

 - Thermodynamics V    IV

Spaceship Command
 - Minmatar Frigate V    V
 - Spaceship Command V    V

So progress is being made, I still have 275 days to go, should be complete April next year, would have been a little earlier but I broke away from the plan temporarily to get Destroyers and BCs to V as CCP were hinting they were going to change the way those skills worked - this is now unlikely to be implemented this year.

I also did a bit of training to fly Cruisers, but not flown one in anger yet.

Thursday, 28 June 2012

Placid Campaign - Days 4 & 5

Day 4 was an improvement for me...sort of.

I was determined not to lose a ship needlessly and managed to stay focused for a change, went out around my usual hunting grounds and played cat & mouse with a Thrasher - Incursus double act that I couldn't split up but who were definitely up for a fight - just not one that I was at all confident in winning.

Avoided hurling myself at Cruisers and AFs and bigger ships, and at the end of my usual hour or two's session I was still in my Rifter, so that was an improvement...but I'd also not been in any fights :(

Day 5 saw me at home during the day rather than at work, so I jumped online for an hour or two and made my rounds.  Spotted some likely targets, but was a little slow off the mark and so they all escaped unharmed.

Then I spotted an Incursus, a quick check of local showed me that the pilot was likely to be a year or two older than me at least, but he didn't seem to be obviously working with anyone.

Eventually we met up and engaged, my guns & rocket was overheated, I had him webbed & scrammed, and he returned the favour.  He stripped my shields down pretty quickly, but I fired up my repper to keep my armour regenning as my autocannons did their thing to him.

By this point his armour was dropping too, but I was getting close to structure so I OHd my repper and switched off my scram to save a bit of cap.  My repper was doing valiantly, managing to restore vital hp before they were stripped off by his next salvo, though my structure was slowly dropping too.  My opponent was not in much better shape and I got him down to about 50% structure before my repper fried (I think, either that or I ran out of cap), either way with no more reps I went BOOM

We exchanged GFs in local (and it was heartfelt from me at least, man I was >< close to winning that one), I then noticed I wasn't warping off, which was when he offered to release my pod for 30 million.

As I had no implants installed, I declined...and he let me go :)  Very good of him

Thinking back, if I'd thought about it would overheating my Damage Control II have given me enough of a buffer to outlast him?
Implants - damage and armour implants would also have helped and may have made the difference.

Overall I was very happy with my performance against a much older character, would have been happier with a win though.

Campaign score = 0-0-4

Tuesday, 26 June 2012

Placid Campaign - Day Three

Remember a couple of posts ago I said I needed to knuckledown and stop jumping into fights I know I can't win?

Seems I don't listen to myself.

Spent a bit of time last night trying to track down a character around my age who was jumping between a Drake and a Buzzard, all the while trying to avoid a much more experienced character in a Rupture.

I finally gave up and had a look at some other systems when I saw a Cyno field go up.  Madness then pounced on me, I reported the cyno in corpchat and proceeded to Warp to zero with guns overheated.

I land on top of the cyno ship (a Kestrel), notice that it is right next to a Thanatos (ooh, not seen one in the flesh before!) hit orbit, targeted the Kestrel (accepting the warning 'yeah, yeah, whatever') and opened up.

Then my brain backed up a bit - warning notice? - takes another look around, hmm how come I didn't see that Station right next to me? uh-oh BOOM

Scratch another Rifter.  I think the Kestrel and Thanatos pilot were a little bemused, so I gave them a hearty wave from my pod and headed back to re-ship.

If I'd spent half a second to look at where I'd landed I probably wouldn't have attacked the Kestrel (or I'd at least have aligned out before doing so).

I honestly have no idea why I did what I did... looking at corpchat later I noticed that when I reported the cyno, someone actually told me that there was a one right at the station in the system I was in.  D'oh!

So I re-ship into another Rifter and head back out, this time I'm determined to keep my head.

Three systems later, there are 4 or 5 in local and it's getting close to my 'wife's getting angry, time to go to bed' time, so I decide to warp to a Plex at 10.

On the way I see that there is a Thrasher either in the plex or on the gate (please be in the plex, please be in the plex) - I land about 8km from the Thrasher on the gate who immediately targets me.  Now I could have bailed out there and then, but instead I opt to close distance and pray that he is Arty Fit.

He isn't.

Campaign score = 0-0-3  (coz deaths to station guns don't show on killboard)