Sunday, 17 November 2013

Mea Culpa

I have previously expounded on risk management, proportionality and various other themes in my blog, where I use the art of expository cogitation and a hefty thesaurus to describe the shape of my mental map of the game and how I navigate through it without losing all my toys.

This is a roundabout way of saying, I have thought long and hard about what I'm good at in EVE, and learned my lessons when I've strayed outside my comfort zone. I even have a few lossmails to prove it. I share these meandering ruminations with my readership in order to give them some inspiration, if not warning, about trying new things.

One thing I haven't got the hang of are 100MN T3's (or indeed any 100MN cruiser).

We've all seen the videos of the Russian dude pwning whole fleets of people. You can even kinda count Kovorix's Navy Omen exploits in this category of video - amazing to watch, difficult to replicate. We have a guy in corp who has inspired us with his highsec war history of using an expensive 100MN Tengu to blow up legions of foes. This prompted another guy to get his own 100MN Tengu, for his new Tengu toon he bought off the forums, the fit of which you can inspect here.

I, for one, know I'm more or less useless at making those kinds of videos, and I don't try.

As with everything in w-space, something like this always has a build-up. It started 4 hours previously when a collapse went badd and I got another guys Orca lodged firmly in highsec. The new static was a C2 with E545/N062 statics (null/C5). In the ten minutes before downtime, I probed it out and noticed a Loki and probes kicking around.

Downtime occurs at dinner time here in Western Australia, and being married, I devote 2-3 hours of QT's most nights to the wife. Which is why I am married, and not bitterly describing my ex-wife as a mosquito harpy. So, i was delayed in my return, but in the end it didn't matter.

I went to nullsec to sniff around for ratters to kill, and cross-jumped a Tengu on the E545. This was enough to get the guys faffing about with Marauders on Singularity to sign in for reals, and mass up on the static.

The Loki exposed itself on the static, and got unlucky. Our mate with the 100MN Tengu was sitting on the inside. The Loki spawned right atop a Falcon and couldn't cloak. He thus had to jump back, and got doubly unlucky, spawning within 2000m of the Legion. While we were shooting him, I noticed the ticker [ADHC] and thought, oh shit, we're gonna be blobbed. Sadly for Rootie Golden, he was well down the rabbit hole, and lost his ride.

Time pased, during which I pointed out to my corpies that Rootie Golden was on his comms, whining and wheezing like a basement geek andd demanding blood. Adhocracy would be out for revenge, and they would be back. This was based on the fact that someone like Rootie Golden doesn't get 230 kills and only 10 losses (now 11) soloing or taking fair fights, Adhocracy has a lot of pride and face to lose, and there are 240 of them. My risk management bells were going off.

Nevertheless, I found their home system up a chain like this: Our hole -> C2 -> nullsec -> C5 -> C5. I parked my alt in nullsec, where their numbers would be exposed while enroute to us, and waited.

They slid an Anathema into our hole, and therefore our fleet comp was compromised. They stayed, primarily, out of nullsec, and I wasn't revealing myself more than strictly necessary, so whilst we knew they had a fleet, we didn't know what. It was safe to assume it would be more than enough to blow up a few of us. So the decision really was, roll the static quickly, or try to outwit them?

We chose the latter.

There was an attempt to bait with an Osprey Navy Issue, which got an Exequror Navy to warp in from their side. he retired to the E545 to bait, and Fornicis obliged with the 100MN Tengu.

Now, I've tried to fly these things, but they really need the proper implants, and a blue pill and decent boosts. The old style Loki boosts were the duck's nuts as far as 100MN Tengu is concerned, with ridiculous sig radius, speed, agility and point range boosts.

None of this works well when you have to get within 30km of a wormhole to do damage. This is what Javelin HAMs and T2 launchers will give you (we'd been regaled with the better DPS application of the navy launchers as he couldn't yet fit T2's). We also didn't have any boosts in the static C2, so the 100MN was going 30% slower than it ought to have, and 30% slower to turn and align. He also began orbiting the wormhole (you always fight aligned) so, no surprises, a Proteus jumps through and points him and it up and is on his arse inside 10 seconds. With a 25 second align time, that's a long time.

This is where my alt in nullsec fails. Faced with a 2 billion Tengu loss shitting up our killboards, I prepare to burn my Rapier to web the Proteus off the Tengu. I am 145km away, unable to warp to 50km to web the Proteus and give our guy a chance of getting his burn going. ADHC chooses the time I'm not looking at my screen to move the rape fleet through the nullsec. Suddenly our guy is drowning in enemy ships, so we uncloak our Falcon and break him free (cost: 1 Falcon).

ADHC warps direct to our static. Fornicis doesn't warp directly, and gets caught. Our other Falcon pilot could have broke the takle from the Execquror Navy, but was afraid of being raped and losing his ship. It's arguable we should have gone down 2 Falcons versus 1 Tengu,  it was the right thing to do, but for some people a Falcon is a large investment, and for others it's not.

Lessons learned? Not sure any have been. It's easy to spread the blame to scouts, but buying a toon and a 2 billion ISK 100MN Tengu and using it in a situation it's not built for, is asking for trouble. I did tell him it would be an expensive lossmail when he bought it. I did tell him 30km isn't enough range to play silly buggers on a wormhole. I did call the +1 in Local which was the Proteus. Mea culpa.

100MN works best in k-space. I've seen them in w-space before, but unless you really try, losing a ship to one is hard. It is a kiting ship, and as we know, kiting ships in wormholes aren't that great.

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