"So Rodney, just what is your zombie escape plan?" I said to my fellow pirate when I saw him link into the corporation chat window. I was outside in my rifter just cruising but there was a lot of talk on our internal forums of Rodney's zombie escape plan. To be honest, this was probably started with a throwaway comment by Rodney and it's been picked up by others and repeated by others until the whole thing has built up enough energy that it just needed some release. Poor Rodney.
Rodney played game and recounted a plan he had hatched with friends when he was planet-bound and didn't fly internet space ships. I think his plan to survive a zombie apocalypse involved stealing a boat, loaded with supplies and get into a large body of water....preferably an ocean. Since, as we all know, zombies can't swim. Then wait it out.
Oddly, I know a thing or two about zombies as well (!) - being an avid reader and pointed my intrepid pirate survivor friend to two excellent resources: World War Z and The Zombie Survival Guide. Hera loved the first one so much, she went out to buy one while Shae then jumped in and gave us a link to a Zombie Survival Quiz - I came out with a 59% survival rating.
Anyway, as one can clearly see this side-tracking of 95% of our online pilots down the zombie survival route added a certain extra flavour to the rest of the evening, which also ended in our own zombie swarm in the form of GIS and their friends.
Without much ado, a fleet (mainly cruisers) was put together and the rabble roared out of Evati, the destination was to be Skarkon but the fun is in the journey and we were delayed when our scout informed us, just two jumps into the route that there was a large cruiser and frigate gang in Otosela. We waited impatiently on the Otosela gate in Akkio when a myrmidon blundered in.
A trigger happy pirate yelled out 'POINT!' and it was game on. Unfortunately, I had already given the order to approach the gate and therefore we were in a very poor position to take down the myrmidon under sentry fire. The myrmidon managed to jump back into Otosela while we had to disengage and warp to the nearest planning and away from the guns.
Meanwhile our scout was relaying information and it appeared there were two or more groups around. A ferox class battle cruiser, vagabond, hawk and harbinger were now on the Akkio gate in Otosela - a worthy snack for us, while a much larger cruiser class gang was apparently cleaning out some nearby Gurista bunkers. Our scout was looking for both.
We had the gate on our scanners and I ordered people to keep a keen eye out. A ferox suddenly appeared on our scanner. It was obvious and the order was given. The ships, already aligned to the Otosela gate whipped back to our starting position and we tackled and webbed down the ferox. It was a quick gank and module grab.
Our scout then reported a positive hit on the missioning gang and without hesitation, the fleet warped in. The numbers were about even but they were spread out and we only managed to take down the myrmidon and the vexor. Please note, that our 12-jump journey we had only ventured 3 jumps from our home system!
As we waited and cooled off our global count-downs, pilots docked up and repaired and sorted out the loot. Cooche had a malfunction with his docking computer and it crashed his thorax into the station - all the time stating 'Docking sequence initiated. Docking sequence initiated.' There's bugs in some of those computers I can tell you and to add insult to injury, Cooche was carrying a fair chunk of the loot too. Some of it blew.
A large GIS and friends gang swept through our system and the order was given to exit the system and scatter back to Evati. I had temporarily handed over the FC role to someone else as I need to effect some much need armour and hull repairs but I proved to be ineffective when I took it back and failed to marshall the fleet well enough to bring them all back in one piece. In short, we lost Rodney(Zombie Survivor) Star and Gorgoleon to overwhelming numbers. The rest scattered home.
Disappointed we needed something to end the evening with a cheer and it was Randgris who spotted a missioning Cerberus and Cooch scanned the pilot down. We all raced in and the pilot, seeing his fate, yelled out that he would pay a ransom. Cooch took the pilot into a ransom channel, quick negotiation and we were 135million isk richer. We then departed and cooled off our global countdowns.
The pilot then continued with his mission and this generated a heated debate over what we should do once the criminal countdowns had expired. After all, we all had the mission area bookmarked. He had paid his ransom but not a pass. The former lets you go with a clip around the ear after you have been jacked while the latter sets you blue for a set period and allows a varying degree of freedom in nominated areas. This pilot had paid a ransom and didn't even leave the mission area. The Bastards do NOT go back on our word. So we honour 1 v 1 and ransoms and pass-holders. However, it has been noted that this was a grey area and could do with more clarification.
Anyway, I should have squashed the discussions flat but in a moment of weakness, I encouraged it. Eventually, I decided to inform the missioning pilot to vacate the area for a bit and let things settle. We were planning on leaving anyway. He agreed and left unmolested.
Pirates are quite a democratic group, believe it or not and have been ever since wet-navy days when societies were largely planet-bound. Debate and votes are encouraged and unlike a lot of our more 'civilised' societies - the results of such votes are binding. Of course, it would be a foolish Captain to encourage too much debate that would run counter to his goals but such is life!
Traditionally a wet-navy pirate organisation was quite flat and loose. Here are some examples and here. If anyone has any thoughts on how ranks were traditionally put together, I would be very interested to know!
The night ended with Gorgoleon and Hera testing out new ship configurations. Gorgoleon in his new hound and Hera showing off his new Moros dread. The firepower of the hound was quite impressive, considering Gorgoleon (an excellent pilot) had just taken this stealth bomber into his hangar a few hours earlier. I was his crash test dummy in my maelstrom and he was firing off deadly salvos of torpedos at me - with him illuminating me through a target painter, the damage was quite impressive from such a little ship. Hera decided to unleash his dread on me and I quickly docked up. Rodney, was also out in his rupture and it dropped down into low armour after just a couple of 'testing' shots. RoninData, our CEO made an appearance and caught up on the day's events.
So a fun night and not a zombie in sight, eh Rodney. ......er what's that behind you...?
After Hours 20: Alan Mathison - After Hours Episode 20 with Alan Mathison is now available HERE. We discuss all things Exoplantary in perhaps the nerdiest After Hours so far. Project Di...
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