Wednesday, November 24, 2010

welcome home 2

(Raxip Elamp warrior saga gw ed)

Raxip's been relatively busy in MH, engaging in belt piracy and 2/10 complex action when able, and occasionally scoring a shiny kill. However that sort of action hasn't been with yours truly, so you're going to have to bother him for any sort of battle reporting.

A day after Raxip Elamp returned to the Heath, we met up once more, this time when I had the intention of making a trip to BRT-. It took some convincing to persuade the pirate that rat bounties are healthy (I told him he can pod my alt scout to -10 when we returned to lowsec) and we headed off, leaving Molden for Etherium Reach as we jumped from Skarkon to L4X-.

The alt scout had spotted some activity near the inbound gate, including two Zealots and a smattering of T1 hulls. Jumping in to investigate, most of what was seen on scan were at tacticals several hundred kilometers off gate or at nearby safes. Raxip managed to snare a Stabber that stayed a little too long on the gate, and we moved on towards our ratting destination.

Upon arriving in BRT-, the locals immediately fled to POSes and we beared out hearts out for over an hour. In this time a TEXN pilot named Devlin joined us, flying a shield tanked arty cane. While I was reasonably sure the locals wouldn't try anything so risky as leaving the POS force field, over time they logged in more members, including a pilot flying a Chimera. About an hour and a half after arriving in BRT-, we spotted fighters on scan, and decided to halt ratting and take a better look around system.

The alt scout bumbled into a Devoter camping our gate leading home, with fighters assigned and bubble running. I had the fleet warp to the HIC, and upon landing we turned around, burning MWD cycles to pull some range from the warp in. While burning, we blasted fighters, the carrier pulling them after two went down to Barrage and Fusion M volleys.

It didn't take too long for the blob to land, fortunately for us they lacked any form of dedicated EWAR. The locals began burning after us, which was exactly what I could have hoped for. As the faster hulls came into range, I began calling primaries and the slaughter began.

First down was a Rifter, the pilot finding out the hard way that an arty cane only needs a volley or two at range to explode a frigate. Next up was a cane, who decided to start MWDing back towards the gate far too late and perished. With the cane down, the HIC had finally shut down his bubble, and hostiles were starting to land on those burning towards us, bridging the distance we had accumulated. However, the locals weren't bringing particularly fast reinforcements to the fight, or warping out/back in fast enough to close the distance we were continuing to pull.

Next up was a Brutix, who managed to tackle Devlin and put him into serious trouble. Devlin, who had been jammed by ECM drones the ENTIRE course of the fight could only mash the lock button helplessly as Raxip and I overheated our weapons to down the Brutix before more hostiles could burn into range. Our efforts payed off, allowing Dev to warp off with most of his structure remaining, however minus his MWD as he burnt it out trying to escape.

Fighters began arriving back on grid, and down a third of our gang, Raxip and I couldn't really apply enough damage to kill any more targets. After a few minutes of getting jammed by ECM drones and with fighters burning into range and applying damage, we decided to warp off, wait down our minute of aggression then warp back to the gate at 0m. We jumped on contact, and took our victory without losses home with us to Skarkon.

Some of the locals who had been goofing off in L4X- were those who engaged us in BRT-, and local was diminished to the pair of Zealots and a Drake. They refused to engage our battlecruisers in L4X-, however followed us into Skarkon, eventually camping Raxip who had docked for repairs while Devlin and I progressed onwards to Ennur. Heading back to the Skarkon gate, Raxip informed us the camper in the Drake was an outlaw as well, and I decided to show these idiots how to gank a BC.

Devlin and I jumped back into Skarkon, aligning to station as Raxip undocked once more. Upon undocking, we warped to Raxip, who was immediately aggressed by the Drake and one of the Zealots. Raxip held his aggression until Devlin and I had traveled the 50au to station, docking as we tackled the Drake. With their outlaw target docked, the situation was reversed on the campers, and they decided to attempt to dock instead of fight. Raxip undocked as fast as he could, and we managed to crush the Drake before it could conclude its aggression countdown.

Raxip logged off, Devlin and I mucking about lowsec for a bit before joining a TEXN fleet chasing a BC gang. We ended up chasing the gang roughly 20 jumps around northern GW until bumping into them in the B-VIP pipe near Egbinger, catching about half of their fleet while the rest fled. Amusingly, it was the same group of pilots who were camping L4X- and lost a Drake to us two hours earlier.

A week passes between the next time Raxip and I head out together, again into the BRT- area to hopefully pull a fight and make some ISK. As usual, the locals POS up while we take our fill of rat bounties in BRT-, killing off the belt population there to move on to JUKO and into V-IH. Upon finishing the rats off in V-IH, I move my alt scout back into JUKO to discover a bunch of pissed off locals camping the gate.

This time they decided to take a page out of our book, bringing three canes, a geddon and a Sabre who held on the BRT- to camp us. We decided to wait a minute for our shields to recharge, warping to the JUKO gate just as one of the canes jumped into V-IH to check up on us. We jumped into JUKO, quickly relaying our positions relative to the gate and breaking cloak to burn downwards, mutually furthest from the camping gang.

The hostiles didn't miss a beat, starting MWDs after us and opening fire on our fleeing ships. Their canes weren't nano fit, and our initial cycle of overheat on our MWDs allowed us to gain a healthy 20km from targets as we continued downwards, picking their fastest cane as primary and firing back. The Armageddon lacked Scorch or a prop mod, and was very quickly a non-factor in the fight.

As one of the canes had jumped through into V-IH, he was a few seconds jumping back in and burning down towards the fight, leaving for a time a level playing field. Raxip and I manage to take our first target into low shields. It didn't manage to alter course and flee before succumbing to focused Barrage fire.

In dying, it did manage to force me to stay close and moving slowly long enough for the second cane to burn into range and apply a scrambler on me. Raxip and I swap damage to the tackling cane, however Raxip had burned to 30km from me, and wasn't doing much DPS at all to the target. Additionally, the third cane was finally coming into weapons range, roughly 30km from me as well opposite of Raxip's cane. We overheat our projectiles, myself applying overheated neuts in a last ditch effort to break tackle and flee.

The third cane burns into tackle range, and my shield buffer melts away, slightly faster than the shield cane next to me. Scanning my UI frantically for something to save me, I make sure I'm aligned out, losing armor rapidly and dropping into hull. I glance at my overview and notice I'm not pointed.

WTFOMGBBQWARPWARPWARPFREEDOM YEEEESSS! The third cane never pointed me, and my last two neut cycles before heat failure must have knocked out the already MWD depleted capacitor on the second cane! I manage to warp out with a third hull remaining, fried neuts and 95% heat damage on my remaining projectiles. Raxip kills the second cane off, who was in similar straights as me before I warped albeit tackled, and tackles the third cane. I align back, wanting to help Raxip out though holding back as it'd take only a volley or two to kill off my crippled ship.

After recharging about 20% shields, I warp back to the fight, landing about the same time Raxip announces he's been jammed by ECM drones. I manage to resolve lock and tackle the cane, finishing the work Raxip started a minute before, ramming Barrage death into the final enemy cane's hull, destroying his ship. We try to burn into range of the T1 gun geddon, but with 60km between us and the BS he has plenty of time to align and flee before we manage point range.

We head back into BRT- to find local diminished as the few who lost ships head back towards highsec to buy more or logged off entirely. We eventually head back to Skarkon to drop off loot and repair, heading back only to find the locals having none of it and leaving us to collect bounties in peace. We leave the area after having taken our fill of NPC bounties, calling it a night not too long afterwords.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010


"Void, it's been a long time since I've looked at that light show."

Raxip stood viewing a projection of Egbinger XII, its blue atmosphere occasionally disturbed by lightning, the brilliant arcs spanning hundreds of kilometers across its hydrogen rich skies. Finished with his examination, he returned to his seat, taking a sip from his glass of spirits, only to find the glass depleted. Raising his glass for his host to see, he shook it lightly, eliciting the tinkle of ice cubes against glass. "Story of my life," he said with a grin.

Smiling, Sard set his own glass down, reaching forward to open the squat cabinet set between the two capsuleers. Retrieving a bottle of liquor, he recharged Raxip's glass, who motioned appreciatively and took a sip. Sard topped off his own drink and returned the bottle to the cabinet.

"She's putting on a show for you," Sard said. Still leaning forward, he began to swirl his drink lightly, regarding the amber fluid with some concentration. "Station side the planet hasn't been this active in days, hardly more than a glimmer of lightning."

Raxip chuckled, looking down at his own drink, taking another swallow. "Hah, yeah. Maybe." The pirate frowned slightly, setting the drink down and looked back to Sard. "So ah, do you think you'll be able to accommodate me?"

"You're family, Raxip, in or out of RANSM. The corporate ship stores are open to you, and we'll supply you with any fitting you'd like."

"Great! I think I'll focus on tech one craft anyway, so I won't be taking much. Just a few Cruisers, a Battlecruiser or two and maybe ten Rifters would be plenty."

"Hah!" Sard raised his eyes to meet Raxip's, continuing to laugh as the VETO pilot looked on in confusion. "I didn't say you'd be taking anything for free Raxip. You have the ISK for that small fleet?"

"Uuh, no." Raxip raised a hand to rub the back of his neck, looking down at the floor. "I've lost most of what I had coming out here in a few fights around Bosena," he said, looking back up to Sard, then shrugging. "I was kinda hoping you'd understand."

"Oh, I understand just fine. However brother, you've decided to cut your own path through this galaxy, and in doing so you've got to pay your way." Sard pointed at the glass Raxip set down. "Drinks are on me, but I'm not funding your piracy anymore."

"How am I supposed to pay then?" Raxip furrowed his brows in frustration. "You're the one that invited me out here, saying you'd have ships available."

Sard's eyes twinkled, a particularly brilliant flash of lighting from the projection illuminating the predatory grin formed on his face. "Raxip old friend, it's a good thing I called you over here when I did, because it's obvious life in VETO's made you soft." Waving down reprisal, he rose from his seat, mentally manipulating the projection, ordering the view changed from an image of the planet their station orbited to a map of the surrounding region, shifting from Molden Heath to the adjacent Great Wildlands.

Sard pointed at a particular cluster of dots, which enlarged to display the constellation of systems nearest to Etherium Reach. Several systems glowed a pulsing red, indicating heavy Angel Cartel activity in the area.

"It's about time you were reintroduced to nullsec, my outlaw friend. Between the Cartel, the local Capsuleer population and Concord bounties, you'll have the capital for more than a few sorry cruisers and smattering of frigates." Sard turned slightly to face Raxip, "Easy money."

Raxip stared at the projection for a moment and then glanced up at the Sebiestor. "You're insane." Rising himself, Raxip stepped over to adjust the projection, shifting the hologram to display Capsuleer statistics. "See, look at that," he said, pointing at the BRT-OP system. "There must be a dozen pilots out there battling for those Concord bounties. How am I supposed to score bounties with them around?"

"First off, I'll be heading out there with you." Sard shut off the projection, walked to the door and opened it. "Second, it seems you need a refresher on the art of skirmish warfare" he said, motioning for Raxip to follow him towards the ship hanger. "Are you coming?" Sard asked.

With arms crossed, Raxip kept his gaze on the now unpowered projector. He shook his head, uncrossed his arms and followed Sard out the door. He doubted the ISK would be so easy, but in the few years he knew him, Sard had never let him down.

Walking astride of Sard, Raxip barked a laugh, eliciting a glance from his companion. "I guess it's back to redshirting for me," Raxip said with a smile. Smiling back, Sard gave Raxip a slap on the back, the pair continuing down to the ship hanger.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

shield cane

As Battleclinic would tell you, a lot of my more casual small gang and solo PvP of late has been from a shield tanked gank cane. The primary reason for the fitting is that I'm able to get away with it as a ratting fit, though its PvP qualities are unparalleled in its class, for several reasons.


The Hurricane and Cyclone are the fastest, most agile battlecruisers in the game. Employing a shield tank ensures that these properties are retained, which means the Hurricane is able to typically speed past similar sized competition, and attempt to match smaller cruiser sized vessels.

Many pilots opt for some speed fittings, whether they be rigs or lowslot modules, however given the typical lack of significant camps or gangs with EWAR support in my area, I'm able to get away with a full gank fitting. Additionally, the gank fitting allows me to maul those BC variants that sacrifice for speed, provided they don't have support to back them up. It's a big assumption to make, but with good experience of your roam area and a scout, it's not much of an issue.


The gank cane is nigh unparalleled in range and damage output, as the double damage bonus, triple gyrostab and double tracking enhancers enable the ship to hit hard well outside of scrambler and webifier ranges. This is important, as while the fitting isn't exactly a glass cannon, it's very easy for armor tanked BC variants or your typical drake to have tens of thousands of greater effective hit points (EHP, Eve Fitting Tool [EFT] jargon). If possible to have a scout, always have a gang going to eek out as many EHP from gang bonuses as possible.


Sporting two spare highslots for a variety of modules, the cane is able to dial its fitting to better adapt to the pilot's environment. Missiles can be fit to enhance the damage output, which is critical for dealing with big tank targets such as Drakes or ratting BS. Twin medium energy neutralizers are great for dealing with frigates: two cycles is enough to clean most frigates of capacitor, enabling escape or a critical cycle of MWD to pull range and improve tracking. If gang skills are trained, a ganglink can be fit without the usual fitting hassle other battlecruisers have. I tend to favor the Interdiction ganglink, as 32km/37km overheated disruptor range is an amazing thing for a battlecruiser that's able to strike ably at those ranges.


While I occasionally take this fitting into lowsec, I tend to favor nullsec, as the lack of sentries and increased population of tackling frigates means my typical dual neut fit is able to compete in an environment where it excels. I do however have competing goals when I enter 0.0, as I'm usually there to grind security status, and gank ratters/engage PvPers second. Thus the drain on my shield buffer is a constant issue when targets arise, though one I can work with.

Typical targets when solo are other battlecruisers and smaller. This includes virtually all variants of BCs, for several reasons. The maneuverability of the basic hull means most other battlecruiser hulls, T2 and T1, will not be able to match the speed of the Hurricane. Those that can tend to have markedly reduced tank and/or gank to the shield gank cane, and are thereby vulnerable. This means the cane is able to kite shorter ranged, slower hulls, or outrun BCs with similar gank/tank capacity and retreat.

Drakes are where this equation falls apart, as both HML and HAM fits tear the shield cane apart, due to the ridiculous level of buffer and recharge Drakes are blessed with. Heavy Missiles drakes are perhaps even more deadly than HAM fits, as even if you're able to burn away several tens of kilometers away from a gang, the Drake will be doing the same damage, all the way out to 80km. By then, the shield cane's buffer is dangerously depleted, and not much can be accomplished before destruction.

My approach to all similar sized or larger targets is to hold 18-22km from target, and give the target time to react to my presence. When a ship tries to close range, I can gauge from its acceleration and velocity whether its an armor rigged and plated variant, and hold my range. If I think it will be a speed fit or more agile ship, I'll watch my foe's velocity like a hawk to make sure it can't speed away without me applying some overheat to my MWD and warp disruptor to keep up. The golden rule with this ship, and most other lightly tanked gank vessels is to work the range advantage until victory is assured.

I carry Barrage, EMP and Fusion, with a fair bit more Barrage as I tend to employ my range advantage frequently rather than burn into web range for the kill. Warriors are used to help deal with frigates.

victory examples

Virtually all my ship victories that didn't end with a loss involve me keeping a cool head, holding range and testing my opponent's reaction to gauge its fitting, whether it has backup and opponent skill. This does result in losing a few ship kills due to targets breaking tackle range and running, however it's the correct way to go about flying the ship.

My three latest skirmishes with Extreme Predujdice. in BRT- have been fine examples of me instigating locals, pulling them to a celestial of my choosing, dragging out their gang and taking them apart piecemeal.

This 1v1 in B-VIP is a good example of holding range and working my greater range and speed against a slower, tankier armor tanked ship. I didn't rush into range, and the closest to the target I managed was about 17km. There were a few spots where the enemy cane pulled out of normal point range, but good heat management meant I was able to keep on top of him until he went down.

While more of an instance of good anti-piracy tactics, this engagement with INSURGENCY. is also a good example of the psychology of PvP and gauging whether your opponents want to fight. I had just cross jumped this cane and an additional Drake, and decided to reapproach gate, jump and see how they'd react. Upon jumping, the pair of BC had returned to the gate. I took this as a cue they wished to fight, and upon decloaking aligned my ship away, using a burst of MWD to gain some distance from the pair. The Hurricane GCCed and gave chase, and I eventually led him some 40km from the gate.

Pulling the Cane off the gate was a damned good thing, as an Absolution jumped through several seconds after I did, and I was only just able to kill the cane as the abso came within 20km of my ship. While I wasn't able to really dent the Absolution's tank before it was able to burn back to gate and jump, it goes to show that playing an engagement out by following a plan allowed me to survive, kill an opponent and turn the tables back on the pirate gang by forcing them to deaggress and jump.

This Drake kill is just an example of how close this match up is. Coffee managed to probe down and tackle this guy, and held point long enough for me to warp in and land a point myself. Then the typical exercise of fighting a drake took place: Drake realizes its in danger, and begins burning away. Without a scrambler, I'm forced to chase and apply neuts until the Drake loses the capacitor to run its MWD. During this chase, my bloated signature radius means I take painful volleys, while the Drake takes a little less damage due to the 7-10km range it typically holds from me. Once the Drake's MWD is conquered, I have to try to overheat and bash my way through its tank, making sure I time my overheat to defeat its peak recharge period. With everything going right, AND 10% more shield/armor HP from gang bonuses, I finished this fight with roughly 50% hull remaining. If the Drake had ECM drones rather than Hobgoblins, its very possible it would have killed me outright, such as in this engagement: The Hurricane needs all of its damage output applied continuously to kill a decently skilled and fit Drake.

For reference, I've flown the cane a hell of a lot more than this, but I can't recall past engagements well enough to relate here, and not to mention perhaps half of my PvP isn't even recorded: many times targets or myself are forced to flee for any number of reasons, resulting in no killmail/lossmails.

defeat examples

When flying the shield gank cane, I can't stress enough to always begin a fight with a skirmishing mindset. When flying small gang and solo, there is little margin for error. If you get tackled by a ship with superior tank, or the reinforcements arrive, no one is there to bail you out. Unless you manage something incredibly lucky, you're dead. Disregarding the strategy means you leave yourself vulnerable to repeat failure.

In this case, I had scouted the Thorax and Cyclone, and had decided to warp to their pull bubble, with the goal of ganking the Cyclone with EMP while neuting down the Thorax. What I didn't account for is both targets using ECM drones, which meant I was permanently jammed for the duration of the fight. Had I eased into the engagement and maintained range to start with, I either would have been able to kill off the drones, or at least draw out the fight long enough to realize the potency of 10 ECM drones and flee.

This engagement like so many other shield cane losses is an example of both Vasavia and myself not watching our range well enough, getting caught and dying miserably. The engagement should have been a textbook case of autocannons trumping blasters, and instead was a good example of how not to fly a skirmish gang.

Always know your limits: if a target tends to fit heavy neuts, has the midslots for plenty of tackle and EWAR, and has good range, avoid it. You can't rely on other pilots being idiots, or at least you should ease into the engagement to test whether or not that Tempest you scanned down has a good fit or not.

I can't find the other engagement where this pair of canes ripped me to shreds, but its a good example of gauging your opponents: if they seem eager to fight, assume they're not alone and react appropriately. I should have just fled.

One final engagement to show what happens to a nanoless gank fitting when caught in a good camp: they die. I should have tried to burn back to the gate, as I didn't realize how poor their DPS output was, however any half decent nullsec gatecamp with EWAR, fast tackle and DPS will put this shield gank fitting down without much effort. Don't expect to fly one of these into a properly patrolled region of nullsec and live.

Monday, November 15, 2010

welcome home

(Raxip Elamp warrior saga mh ed)

After 20 minutes of guilting Raxip Elamp over his lack of recent PvP and all the fun he used to have in the past, the illustrious brass balls Rifter jock decided to grace Molden with his presence. Given the volume of time since his last appearance in the Heath, Raxip has since skilled for new ships, and upon his arrival home, promptly undocked an artillery fit Hurricane and reported dastardly folk about. The resulting tale takes place over the next 80 minutes.

The ship Raxip reported while on the way to his Hurricane was a Broadsword, the name of which I recognized from a new pirate corp in the area. Undocking a Cyclone from Oddelulf bottom station, I guessed the pirates would remain roughly were they had been reported, which was half way between Raxip and myself, and began heading towards Raxip.

Coffee was already in Heild local, and had eyes on the pirate fleet: two Broadswords, one GCCed, the other not. I arrived on the Heild gate in Bosena a few seconds before Raxip managed the same in Aedald, and jumped in, arriving in Heild 40ish AU from the Aedald gate. I was counting on the fact Raxip was out of my corp and an outlaw to clinch the engagement.

Upon jumping, Raxip decloaked and was immediately aggressed by the outlaw Broadsword. With both Broadswords lacking webifiers, Raxip was easily able to maintain comfortable range, and once I was on grid and had the outlaw tackled, was out of immediate danger. With the scrambler on, the Broadsword was dead in the water and meat for our projectile arsenal.

Not to be outdone, the second pirate Broadsword, who wasn't outlaw, decided to engage my Cyclone, incurring GCC and allowing us to easily primary his ship without sentries ourselves. I land a scrambler on the second Broadsword and we make quick work of the HIC. A third pirate piloting a Hurricane smartly warped off, having arrived after the first was destroyed and the second nearing armor damage.

Raxip scoops the loot, and I decide to poke around Heild, as there were another six or more pilots in local not associated with those we just killed. Landing at planet seven, I end up spotting several ships on scan, including a cane, a Cyclone, a Tengu, and an Arbitrator. It takes a few minutes to narrow down the BCs, but eventually they're confirmed at a belt and we warp to it.

Upon landing, the BCs are identified as dueling 170km off the belt, and the Arbitrator slowly moving out towards the pair. The cruiser initiates warp with the arrival of our ships, however the pair of BCs, a SCONE cane and .GCC. Cyclone remain to finish off their fight. We begin burning out to the pair, giving the two a final countdown to finish their fight before we finished it for them. At about 70km the Hurricane explodes, leaving the Cyclone as the only target left on grid.

It loots the cane wreck, and as our ships power into lock range and closer, surprisingly decides to burn towards us and fight. The .GCC. Cyclone primaries me as we exchange tackle, and the inevitable countdown towards destruction commences. Given that it just had a lengthy fight with a cane which often fit energy neuts, I expect the .GCC. Cyclone to be low on 800's, and the fight to be over in less than a minute.

Except the fight doesn't end, as the enemy Cyclone seems to have just enough repping power to match the combined DPS of my Cyclone and Raxip's arty cane. Given this fact, I confirm to myself who owns the Tengu that's still on scan and it's purpose in local: to provide ganglinks for the Cyclone pilot, who's likely rocking to a Crystal implant set and Blue Pill boosters. Regardless of this fact I inform Coffee to hold off on decloaking his Falcon, as we should be able to power through the tank given time.

The Cyclone's tank finally fails after firing its last cap booster, some five or more minutes after initially aggressing my ship. While it was unable to itself break my tank, I was only just matching its incoming DPS by popping a Blue Pill myself and toggling overheat every so often. With the Cyclone down, we begin looting the field, scooping what what was left of both the Cyclone and Hurricane wrecks, only to have the SCONE pilot who had lost his Hurricane warp on top of us in a Tempest.

I had run into this pilot's pest fit a few days prior after engaging a small gang of SCONEs in Oddelulf, and he favored the dual heavy neut shield gank fit. Fearing its potency and possible SCONE reinforcements, Coffee decloaks and begins jamming the battleship, immediately breaking its lock, but not before the pest scared the shit out of Raxip by alphaing his cap and giving him a few volleys of EMP L to remember him by.

I managed to scramble the Tempest a few seconds after it landed, and with Coffee's ECM cycles was free to pound the gank fit's buffer tank down. Coffee lost jams once, in those 20 seconds the pest was able to assign ECM drones on Raxip and alpha my cap, however a quick 800 boost made sure I maintained tackle. The pest was soon out of shields, into armor, and then into structure.

However, this pilot just gave us a decent fight from the .GCC. Cyclone. And ganking people flying solo with Falcon support is boring for both parties. Some furious discussion in gang while the SCONE pest's armor evaporated ended with us deciding to let him go for the price of a song. While things didn't quite work out as a formal ransom (we let him go as he asked incredulously in local what happened), we did get a bit of song out of him, with him singing a bit of "If you're happy and you know it, pod Amarr!" into local. Satisfied, we waited down GCC, stowing loot in a nearby station.

After five or so minutes of waiting, we were informed by TEXN that a previously spotted T3/T2 BC gang had set up a camp in B-VIP, which was only four jumps away. Ignoring our GCC, we moved hastily over to Egbinger, where I swapped to a Maelstrom and waited for the rest of the TEXN gang to accumulate. Once formed up, I jumped my Maelstrom into B-VIP as bait, with the rest of fleet waiting in Egbinger.

I immediately noticed a few things wrong:
1) With no Interdictors, the campers had deployed bubbles, but they weren't pull bubbles, and they weren't large bubbles either. This meant they just deployed them about the regional gate they were camping at random.
2) They had no fast tackle, which meant I was able to warp to the outbound 9SNK gate to hopefully get caught by a pull bubble and snag the engagement. There was no pull bubble, or any attempt to chase my battleship.

With these facts in place, I deducted through logics that these people were idiots, and warped back to the Egbinger gate at 0m. Upon landing, I tackled and engaged their Sleipnir, and their entire gang fell upon me. With aggression acquired, our gang jumped in, and we slaughtered those unfortunate enough to not leave with the local spike. Given that these folks have been flying their utterly NASTY looking gangs around MH a few times in the past, I have high hopes that they'll bumble along again, as regardless of what I'm flying at the time, I'm confident I'll kill at least one poorly fit and wildly expensive ship before going down.

And with their destruction, Raxip and myself decided to call it a night.

Sunday, November 14, 2010


As hinted in my last entry, Molden Heath has been hopping, and showing no sign of slowing down. Sure, she calms down around 02:00 or so, but before then, the region is rich with targets, either PvPers looking for a fight, or carebears going about their money making way.

capital ships & POS work

RANSM has taken part in quite a few high profile ganks of late. In the month since my last post, RANSM has been a significant factor in the takedown of two POSes and 4 cap ships, a deviation from this small corp's typical target pool of battleships and smaller. This insurgence of kills coincides with a few friendly pirate corporations returning to the area, which means once again RANSM is able to target virtually anything in space and have the firepower to take it down.

The small Blood tower was of special note to me: it was the first tower I have ever taken part in sieging, and spawned the largest fleet engagement I've FC'd in quite some time. It also coincided with Flash's 90's roam, so prod him to get that post back up in some form. I'll write a report about what happened and what I learned soon™, as it was a freaking awesome experience.


With just two new (active) members, RANSM's activity in MH has exploded, resulting in daily PvP results that mirror corporations many times our size. With this, and the spread of time zones members are active, the corporation has been scouting, probing and engaging some exciting targets in Molden Heath and beyond. Ari managed to demolish a Machariel and Apocalypse Navy Issue within the span of 10 days in Oddelulf, and roughly a week afterwords I joined her to snag the rare mission running Absolution attempting to kill Angel rats. There's been a HELL of a lot more activity than this, however you're just going to have to check the corporation killboard if you're interested, as the dozen or so kills we've been managing a day is too much to cover all at once!

small gang action

Given the abundance of pilots that wish to PvP, a lot of my small gang action of late has been rather one sided affairs where the real question is if we have enough tackle on all targets before they realize the peril they're in. Evolution 112, a French alliance that has recently moved their lowsec base to Egbinger has been finding out the hard way that the local pirates aren't to be trifled with. Similarly, Brutal Deliverence, a nullsec corporation which bases out of BRT- has been given repeat lessons in PvP tactics. Sure, they've ganked me a few times, however I like to think I've learned my lesson and have since made good.

The war with Dragoons. alliance marches on, and every so often we're able to get fights out of them. Recently they've discovered my corporation honor 1v1s, and a rash of them have taken place. There have been a few slipups involving larger scale battles where not all pilots understood the terms of engagements, but overall I'd say the conflict has matured to a good natured give and take, with the pirates doing most of the taking.

Speaking of pirates, it hasn't all been fun in gangs, as there have been a number of skirmishes and flat out brawls between the true denizens of Molden Heath. While there have been a few fights between the old and new pirates who've taken to Molden, SCONEs instigated an excellent fight on the 8th, which coincided only minutes after Coffee fit his first Falcon. SCONE's weren't too pleased with the results of this experiment, though they made a damn good showing for themselves given their composition.

Another alliance, The Hatchery, which I think is an extension of the Starcraft community Team Liquid has been flying around MH and GW, trying for whatever fights their lower SP pilots can manage. I LOVE the attitude their pilots are exhibiting, and think that they'll go very far if they just keep up what their doing and build experience. Until then, they're going to lose a few ships.

Lasty, Electus Matari have been making some serious plays into Molden, and with Dragoons. have been keeping the light burning for anti-piracy in the region. They've been managing some impressive gang compositions, including Artillery fit Tempest fleets with adequate EWAR support in the form of a Bhaalgorn and smaller support ships, BC and logistics gangs with all the niceties (ganglinks, recons and fast tackle), and your classic RR fleets. Unfortunately their Call To Arms (CTAs) times don't typically coincide with us pirates, but hopefully in the future we can have more exchanges, such as the one that occured today.