31 Jan 2012

Drunk Roam Update, yet another FC guide and When Can I Bring My Tornado Out?

Drunk Roam Update

I have had much interest from people so thank you so much! My liver will try it's best to withstand the punishment. I have some comical fits in mind and if anyone else has one; please send it to me or pop it under the comments. Remember, you will be drunk on the night so who cares?

The main fleet pilots
I think I will be bringing a Bellicose to begin with then moving through my list of ships. I do have a maelstrom that is a bit of a shocker in terms of rig set-up so this looks like a great candidate too.

Date of the drunk roam: 3rd February 2012, Friday Evening, starting from 20:30 in the Metropolis Region Low-Sec, exact details to those who are coming will be passed on when in fleet. Be in the 'INDEPENDENCE' in-game chat channel from 19:30 onwards please.  We will rolling around until we pass out (which for me will be very soon!) or we run out of ships.

Yet Another FC Guide
A typical FC?
The Bastards are fortunate to have a number of excellent FCs and after Penelope's recent article in Eve-Tribune I have had many evemails from people wanting more information. For now, I would like to go through Penelope as it was her article that opened up this conversation. However, I have been in the process of putting together a simple FC guide for The Bastards since early 2011 because we have a lot of new pilots and I encourage my pilots to step up, lead a fleet, go out and 'just do it'. This usually is the only rule I have for budding FCs; you learn by doing. No amount of theory crafting will suffice. I will post up snippets in this here blog for all to enjoy (or critisise) and for general comment.

When Can I Fly My Tornado?
Lately, we've been busy having a fight all over Metropolis and our KillBoard hasn't been able to keep up: the new updates with the latest patches (new ammo) has broken the KB. However, I love the new Neocom and other UI changes. The much anticipated AF changes too. All wonderful stuff and makes a space ship flying pirate like me, very happy in the pants. Of course, this still means that I am distracted enough not to bring out my Tornado, apart from a few POCO bashes this month. I am also looking for a close range face melter and it appears that the Talos fits the bill? Comments please as I want to benefit from other pilots' expertise and experience.

A massed brawl is always good for the soul
The Bastards have been active from the very first day of 2012 - our neck of the woods has been extremely busy with corporations and alliances either setting up shop or passing through Evati. All great for our line of business. Nearby we have Eve-university in Hagilur / Dudreda (they apparently have a 'war' on with the infamous RvB alliance), we have Eve-Union come rolling around setting up POCOs and responding to their attacks with their usual numbers and tactics, close by there are chaps from TEST alliance, clustering around the entrance points to Geminate and Vale and we've even seen some White Noise(dot) fleets wander through. All wonderful stuff for us. Nothing keeps a pirate happy than activity and loot and this month has been super fun. Long may it continue.

I did miss a sanctioned fleet this thursday - I was all for attending but a last minute issue prevented me from leaving work, but the chaps appeared to have a successful night as per the kill board summary which makes my absence sting even more. I could have brought out my tornado after all!

18 Jan 2012

Happy New Year, boy we love them POCOs and Drunk Roam!

The Bastards: Rested, Reloaded and Ready
Chill with a drink and fag
2012 seems The Bastards back with all guns blazing. December of last year, after much negotiation - we entered into an agreement with our erstwhile rivals, Los Chupababras. Despite the hispanic name, the majority of the chaps are Italians. A link-up with joint fleets and comms was organised and tentatively, we went out as a combined fleet. The results, I have to say, have been very pleasing and lucrative for both groups. Now, instead of hunting each other we would go after other targets usually in a combined fleet of between 12-20 ships. A nice number, large enough to take on most things in low-sec but small enough to avoid the much bigger (usually null-sec aligned) groupings. It has been six weeks now and things are just getting better. Certainly, the response from all the pilots have been positive.

Now why did The Bastards agree to such a link up in the first place? Our patch of low-sec has seen an upswing of larger, more well organised groups roaming through. This is all well and good for low-sec space, long regarded by many as a barren desert of woe. However, for residents such as ourselves we frequently found ourselves out-numbered 3-1 or more. Now, when cornered we can and do fight as hard as anyone but our primary goal is to survive and hold the field so we can pick the loot and/or engage in one or two cheeky ransoms. If we can disengage and fight another day (preferably in the same ship!) then so much the better. So our choice was to adapt or be brushed aside and become irrelevant. We adapted and it has proven to be a good decision. Certainly, the board of directors at The Bastards have supported this. What? You didn't think that there were corporate structures at The Bastards? 

Let's blow it up....
 We love POCOs? What on earth is that? Sounds like some medical term for a pimple on one's arse or a Californian pop group.  In fact, it stands for 'Player Owned Custom Offices'. With the latest (wonderful) release of the Eve client, this was one of many new features added and thereby enriching us all.

OK, so why the love for them? Well, we've managed to get plenty of fights after knocking one or two of these chappies down. They are similar to a small player owned stations (POS) without the guns. With no guns (or neutralisers, webbers etc) they are relatively 'safe' to engage. We have attacked a POCO with just two stealth bombers. It took ages but it is possible. Having the POCOs in our home system also means that we can ship up or down (or sideways) very easily as the situation dictates.

You knock down the POCO's shields (usually 10,000,000 HP) and it drops into reinforced mode for a period of approximately 24 hours. When in this mode, it is invulnerable to all further attack. This gives the owner time to gather personnel to repair the shields once it leaves reinforced. The timer is visible to anyone in local and of course, the attackers also know when the POCO leaves reinforced.

So 24 hours later, and cue fights. Or not.

Either way, The Bastards regard the presence of POCOs as an opportunity to harass and annoy as well as setting up an environment for a fight. Since we live in Evati, we can easily jump into battle cruisers (or stealth bombers) or the yummy new tier-3 battle cruisers and batter a POCO. A small fleet (about 10 ships) can get a POCO down in about 15 minutes. Since we're not a big alliance, this works out beautifully when we're waiting for a fleet to get established, pilots to come back from being afk or if it is a particularly quiet night.

Speaking of a quiet night - I don't think we've had one in since the new year. My first blog entry in January comes on the 16th day and this is because everything has been just so damn busy and fun. The first year started off with kills galore and while I don't want to go through kills (and losses) in any detail, though some memorable events do come to mind including a crazy evening when we engaged an EVE-UNION fleet (after we had reinforced one of their POCOs) which then pulled in both Shadow Cartel and Black Soul Industries. Unfortunately for The Bastards, we were caught in the middle. EVE-UNION has a video available here of the night's fight from their viewpoint.Another night, Marco and I were chucking torps at another POCO and it was late for both of us. We were so tired we practically fell asleep made worse by 1) still having a GCC and 2) warping to a gate and not jumping instantly. Needless to say, we both lost our hounds, much to my horror (but only after I woke up) - very surprised that no-one actually took the opportunity to pod me!

In between these POCO bashes we've been roaming around. The population in this section of low-sec has increased significantly and it is most likely due to the presence of 100s of TEST alliance pilots, now relocated to Otosela so they can base their strikes into Vale of Silent and Geminate Regions. What fun.

So, I do make an offer to my fellow pirates in the Metropolis / Molden Heath / Heimatar region: we are more than happy to set-up a fight on numerous POCOs and we would greatly welcome the extra muscle that some of our bigger friends can bring. Please contact either me, TFS Tibbs, Marco Drack or TheHermit for more details please.

The Bastards will remain a medium sized corporation so we can't bring in dreads and carriers without bankrupting ourselves as we're poor pirates. Unless there's someone with deep pockets who can give us all the capital ships we need?


Thought so.


Pirate love a pint or two
3rd February 2012
Friday Night; 21:00
Location: Somewhere close to Akkio

Yes, the first drunk roam of 2012 is being organised. I have the above dates as two possible options and will see which one has the most yes votes/comments. My liver has had sufficient time to recover from the last drunk roam and I went easy over christmas too. So I feel a bit more robust but we shall see.

A FUN roam, no sad faces!! Come out of the Captain's quarters and fly spaceships and get drunk!!

1. Join the in-game channel 'INDEPENDENCE' for details and fleet pick up and vent info on the day.
2. Any T1 frigate/cruiser fitted out with whatever you want.
3. Yes, fit a rupture with lasers if you want.
4. Or a thorax with arties and missiles.
5. Or a rifter with a cruiser sized weapon.
6. Or bring a Celestis.
7. Mix your weapon systems. Why? because we can and that's how we roll.
8. Points required of course, we can't have people running away.
Pirate forcing someone to drink to excess
9. We each drink a shot of spirits (or beer) every half hour during the roam and after each ship kill and after each ship loss and for every ransom.
10. Aim is to see who can stay up for the longest.
11.Needs to be frapsed with some vent recordings as well.
12. If you decide to fit a stab (why not?) then you have to say 'STABBED!' in local, take a shot of alcohol and then RUN like the wuss you are when you get tackled. If you do this and get smack - everyone else will need to take a shot on your behalf.
13. Any other rules that the FC wants to make up...

Interested? Then contact us using the one of the following methods:

1. Post a comment here; with a yes or no. A drunken ship type would be good too. 
2. Contact Flashfresh on flashfresh@the-bastards.com
3. Contact TheHermit on thehermit@the-bastards.com
4. Contact Flashfresh or TheHermit or Shizraak ingame via conversation or evemail
5. Twitter: #tweetfleet

Go on, it will be fun.
OTHER STUFFAdministrative
I have had the usual stack of administrative tasks assigned to me and this included the unpleasant (but necessary) task of booting inactive members from the corporation. We've had some chaps who have not been online for well over 12 months and not a word to anyone if they're coming back. So the corporation is slimming down drastically in Q1, 2012. We're also going to be restocking our ship hangars with shiny kit and I just have to set up a roam with mainly tier-3 battle cruisers. I know many corporations have already done this with excellent results.

EVE-Tribue and Penelope Starr
We were honoured to have Penelope Starr, a writer for Eve-Tribune with us for a bit leading up to the new year. She wanted to find out more about low-sec piracy and fleet work for an article and I was happy to contribute. Her excellent article: 'The First Rules of Target Calling' is a great read. Highly recommended.

Marco is the new CEO
A little birdy just told me that Marco is now the new CEO...excellent news, make him primary!

The Bastards 2012, refreshed and reloaded. We are of course, still recruiting so click on this link for details if you are interested in joining up.