29 Jun 2012

Faction Warfare, EVE uni Q&A and hot damn, love that thrasher!

Recently, I was asked to sit in on a Pirate Q&A panel for Eve University. This was organised by extraordinary pirate Sard Caid from the pirate's side. Joining Sard were two other illustrious and infamous characters: Suleiman Shouaa (Tuskers) and Wowbagger (Shadow Cartel) - of course, a few other chaps were missing but this was through no fault of Sard or Eve Uni.

Our Q&A panel was more honest than this lot....
Still, it was an honour to be present with these guys and despite some initial issues with my mumble account (we use vent, ts and eve-voice); I finally managed to get my head around it and hopefully contributed fruitfully to the discussion. 

The session was two hours long but it went by quick - the listeners were very attentive and fired at us some excellent questions which I hope we, collectively answered as well as we could. Our different cultures and styles as pirates did come through too, every pilot is different even more so when talking about pirates. At the end of the session, I hope that the listeners (both live and those who listen to the recording) will find that low-sec piracy (and living there) an attractive alternative to either high-sec or null-sec. 

Faction Warfare
After numerous chats with corp mates and our flying companions; The Chupacabras - we discussed the possibility of The Bastards signing up for Faction Warfare. With the summer looming, there would be the inevitable drop in activity so why not jump onto FW and see what it can offer for this summer? Certainly, we had a chance now to tackle hostile pilots on gates and stations without a war-dec and no sentry fire! Am up for anything so decided to sign up with the Minmatar republic since our home station is in Minmatar space, if we picked Amarr or Caldari factions - we would certainly be locked out of our own hangars! After the sign-up was processed we went straight for it - taking a fleet of destroyers down to the front line. Now, the struggle between the Minmatar and Amarr is as an old one. We're probably going to add just a bit more death and destruction to it. We checked the operations board: the Minmatar has grabbed a massive chunk of real-estate early on but it looks like this was partly due to the influence of certain Goons, if stories are to be believed. Having the Amarr now come back and grab  their lost systems back means more interesting fights. We found some contested systems and set course. 

When the roam had finished, we ended up killing x2 thrashers, x1 catalyst, x1 drake, x1 stabber, x2 rupture and x1 rifter on the night for the loss of x2 vigils and x1 punisher. We could have killed half that number again if we had any long points. We grabbed nearly all the loot, so jangling all the way home. Not bad for the first outing as an organised group. I even gained some loyalty points. No idea what to do with them though.

Maybe use the LP to get a better prosthetic? 
Now, I think the term for us is now privateers. Should be fun and profitable but so long as activity continues, then we will keep flying. Of course, am going to organise a drunk roam (once my liver heals) and we will be roaming around low-sec too. Just no shooting our new purple tagged friends. 

Coinciding with this summer move of ours, I have seen the return of some of old faces: DJ Akula, Wikkid One, Zemledock, Ard Unjiigo and others. Very happy to see some of these veterans, they'll be rusty no doubt but one should rediscover their killing touch soon enough. 

Just want to say, since the buff - this little spiky ships has turned nasty, really nasty. I have to train up Gallente Frigate to V methinks! Thanks to all those who sent in incursus fits to me. I hope to have a few deployed in the coming weeks. There's this dual SAR II fit that I want to try out.

My friends tell me that his is a nasty little bugger...

This is what I would like to fly:

[Incursus, Solo active]

Damage Control II
Small Armor Repairer II
Adaptive Nano Plating II
200mm Reinforced Rolled Tungsten Plates I

Limited 1MN MicroWarpdrive I
J5b Phased Prototype Warp Scrambler I
X5 Prototype Engine Enervator

Light Neutron Blaster II, Null S
Light Neutron Blaster II, Null S
Light Neutron Blaster II, Null S

Small Ancillary Current Router I
Small Anti-Explosive Pump I
Small Hybrid Burst Aerator I

Hobgoblin II x1

[Incursus, PVP Frig]

Damage Control II
Magnetic Field Stabilizer II
Tracking Enhancer II
Adaptive Nano Plating II

1MN Afterburner II
Faint Epsilon Warp Scrambler I
X5 Prototype Engine Enervator

Light Neutron Blaster II, Null S
Light Neutron Blaster II, Null S
Light Neutron Blaster II, Null S

Small Processor Overclocking Unit I
Small Hybrid Burst Aerator I
[Empty Rig slot]

Hobgoblin II x1

15 Jun 2012

Summer time, RR roll-out and stealth bomber magic.

The last couple of roams we have been going out with Stealth Bombers - partly inspired by Rixx's excellent article on Stealth Bombers and that their new make-over is SEX has meant that us pirates have been screaming around low-sec in these little beasties. I am flying a hound but I have to say, the Nemesis looks sweet. Might need to get me one of those. However the pickings have been slim so we decided that it was time for a change. Stealth Bombers are ninja for sure but I think I need Rixx to give us some pointers! I will continue to fly them for sure but a little bit of luck would have been welcome.

We have the ships now....

So time to ship up to the venerable battle-ship class ships and with six pilots & hulls available, we decided that the remote repping set-up would give us the most bang per buck. Thrown in a force recon and we were good to go.

Our fleet: 

With the recent revamp of Faction Warfare we have definitely seen an increase in numbers in all systems but most pilots have been flying around in smaller ships classes: frigates and destroyers so not too useful against the larger (and slower) battle ship hulls we were piloting. With a scout ahead of us, we rolled around low-sec until we ended up in Molden Heath when the fleet scattered a little in order to cover more ground. This proved to be a fatal mistake but at the time it wasn't obvious.

Our scout reported that a neutral dominix was tackled one jump away from our current position in Oddelulf (we were headed to Bosena but our other scout reported negative targets) - our megathron suddenly lost connection two jumps away while the rest of use leapt into action. Timing was horrible as the megathron was our main source of DPS but we were committed to the action so away we rumble into fire and destruction!
I promise you that is what I said!

Landing at the gate we saw a megathron, stabber, blackbird, typhoon and a tempest. We set primary to be the tempest while sending our drones onto the blackbird. They counter attacked by going after Dil'e Mahn's Dominix having dispatched the neutral Dominix easily. Any remote repair work requires timing and organisation and quick reactions. We fired off our reppers and kept Dil'e alive while we got to work on the megathron, the ship we assumed would be the main damage dealer. Our DPS was low however, relative to the fleet hulls we were flying. The megathron was going down slowly but without the punching power of our own megathron, it was going to be tight. The blackbird came back at range and then, an Archon appeared.

Game over for us as it quickly slapped armour repairers onto the megathron completely negating our incoming damage.  In addition to the archon, it was joined by an abaddon and an armageddon to add to our woes and we were surrounded.


Our own repairing efforts was too little to counter the incoming damage. Edney went down, guns blazing and then it was Dil'e followed by Mal. I was left to last (thanks guys!) and whipped my pod back home along with the rapier and megathron. A sobering experience for sure - I really should scrape some cash together to get a carrier for myself!

(oh, for some insane reason I now have Minnie Dread and Minnie Cap Projectile at V) - why, I ask myself? I must have wanted a long skill training when I went on leave all those weeks ago and never checked back. 

However, I have now looked at the price of ships (from frigates all the way up to capital class) and all I can say is this: DAMN. Most ships have increased by at least 35% if not more; luckily I have a bunch of ruptures but I feat that this will mean we will need to fly even smarter. I suspect that (at least for us poor pirates) - we will be flying the T1 express more!

Have no fear, my rupture of doom will be taking to the skies this week. I am going to see if I can fit a ship for just a few million in terms of fittings and still be effective? Absolutely. Stay tuned.

This is my ship of choice and there should be no other....