I was speaking with someone who has been away from the game for the last six or so months. He was wondering if he could come to THC2. We had a chat about that and as we discussed ships I told him that one of the most basic necessities would be skills to fly a cruiser and the ability to T2 shield or T2 armor tank said cruiser with guns right behind it.
"I thought pirates were more into frigates?"
I blinked at that. My own personal taste in frigates has been hard to indulge in low sec. Of the 831 things on my killboard 285 have been killed in frigates. 8 of those kills have been with a T1 frigate (Rifter) 8 with a T1 frigate (Incursus during a fleet of Incursi) and the rest have been with T2 frigates/Interceptors. Most of those kills have happened post Retribution now that frigates are able to mitigate gategun and station gun damage. This is all because Molden Heath is not faction warfare based low security space and the group that I flew with, until Retribution, were a battlecruiser heavy group. Post retribution, cruisers are a more common sight. However, it was never about frigates.
I consider us as much pirate as the next group of low sec PvPers. We are not pirate roleplayers. We are a solo (except me) and small gang fighters who live in low sec because low sec is where we like to be. However, I've never limited pirate to frigate.
Now, frigate fighting is its own play style The ships are small and fast, the fights frantic and edged by fine degrees of skill (both skill point and player skill). They also have the lovely side effect of being cost effective. Cost effective is good. Not everyone enjoys making ISK in Eve. For many, it is a necessary evil. For others, pixil money makes us happy.
But ISK is the great motivator in Eve. From agreements that turn nullsec into a series of treaties to target choices in a fleet due to killboard efficiency. However, we all perceive value differently. For some, being able to afford what they want right now is all that they care for and others wish to create vast projects and complex economic empires. The two both hinge upon ISK.
As much as ISK is the great motivator it is also the greatest aversion. Miura Bull, a fantastic frigate pilot wrote some thoughts on upscaling into pirate frigates. Even veteran pilots who have been around since before the sun was born such as Kirith Kodachi admits to feeling the pressure that ISK places upon their ship decisions.
One of the lies of ISK is that it whispers to us of value due to price alone. However, value as in cost is also based upon supply and demand as well as rarity. Some items are valuable only because they are uncommon not because they are good. Other items have a high value simply do to their cost of creation. Because Eve does not spawn spaceships out of the void for us the cost of making that ship is added to the cost of acquiring that ship and acquisition does not always mean going down to the nearest dealer and picking up a new ride.
Are people stupid for flying expensive things? When someone upgrades a ship, to one much more expensive, to deal with a situation is it because they cannot deal with the situation in a smaller ship or because they decided to change their tactics? And is it so terrible of them to do so? Is placing an expensive ship on the field some type of insult or admission of inadequacy?
I see it often, disparagement against more expensive hulls. Yet, a faction or pirate hull does not the pilot a god make.
I will be investing in Hurricane Fleet Issues after the expansion. It will be my go to DPS ship as it once was before. And yes it will be expensive compared to some other ships. Some people may call me various slurs for bringing a faction ship to the field. Or, more likely, from some of the things I have seen of late they will.
I guess I will bring disappointment down upon others. I've tried to play the game where I always did what I was told to do and flew what I was told to fly without any personal input It is not to say that I will reject fleet doctrines when they come but if we are going to kitchen sink it up I will undock something that costs some ISK and I will feel no shame as I do it. I am not bringing the ship to the fight because I have to use it otherwise I cannot possibly engage, I am bringing it because that is what I want to fly of the things that I can fly properly.