Monday, February 24, 2014

Send in One Sugar and I'll Double Her

The new capital wrecks are very, very cool. The shattered hulls are reminders of the destruction that happened. It is even better when they wrecks are not yours.


Today is a story of how I did something I've never done before. Sometimes, personal growth hits you all at once and today was one of those days.

I was working on stocking TCS. I had just gotten my headset situation corrected after an attempt to switch to a wireless headset last night. I was on coms just hanging out stocking my store and running Banished on a side monitor (I will discuss Banished on Downtime Hours). The boys were floating around. Some were looking for fights and some were doing PvP. We had no real fleet up and no real intention. I love days like that. We're all together, hanging around, playing the game in our little ways yet still an interlinked cohesive whole.

In Half a POCO was being bashed. Someone noticed a pod hop out and went to see what was happening. It appears that Kelts Alliance, a Russian Corporation of long history in Molden Heath was dropped by a BlOps fleet while reinforcing all the POCOs. The BlOps fleet lost several battleships and refit to carriers and dreadnoughts and dropped on the fleet.

As they waged dreadnought war we woke up. Pings hit jabber, we called people out of Dota2 and DayZ channels and the FC call was, "Get in fleet, get Guardians undocked! T3s, Armor Hacs! Get me DPS! Go go go!" Our fleet coalesced from nothing. People came screaming back into Istodard are full speed. Jump clones were activated. With two Guardians shipped the first part of the fleet undocked to go lock the dreadnoughts down. People logged in, another Guardian chased the fleet, T3s undocked and a link ship headed towards the system. In general the call was for, "More people" and we made that happen. Alts logged in. Someone called that they were en-route with an Armageddon. With the links already handled I looked at my alts window and stared at my Curse.

I have owned my Curse for a year and a half. It was a present given to me by Wet Rain of TEXN. I've wanted to fly it but Sugar has been busy. Last fall, I trained my alt, Blue Silk, into recons and up to five. I cross trained her into Falcons and Curse. I then, never used them and focused on Sugar. Silk has been a glorified cyno pilot for most of her life but in her own right she is a 43 million SP pilot who flies CovOps, Haulers, Freighters, Recons, and two T3s. She is a perfect scanning alt, a perfect exploration alt, a perfect recon pilot, and a fully trained link pilot. I've kept her in the background but she was my third character created with a 6 month side kick special when I was 6 weeks old just because I wanted an Amarr pilot. She was my primary money maker for exploration and an invaluable asset for supporting my other pastimes. And today, she entered into combat for the first time.

I switched into my Curse and undocked. I joined the fleet, reported that I had a Curse enroute and did something I have never done before. 

I decided to duel box the fight.

Sugar dropped onto the field in my armor HAC Loki. I anchored her up to orbit and started shooting primaries and webbing the ships. There was a Deimos and a Legion on the field along with a Thanatos, Moros, and Nagalfar. The capitals were all in siege/triage. I distributed webs and shot the primary as my Curse landed on field.

I've never flown the Curse before. I understand the basics. Neut everything, use my range to my advantage and my neuts as my weapons. I landed thirty off and started neuting as called. The Geddon landed as well and I learned how cap hungry the curse is. Our Guardians were amazing. They kept reps up, they stopped Dave from dying when the Nag finally landed a hit, and they kept my curse and the Geddon topped up. I kited my Curse for all I was worth and kept an eye on Sugar in her Orbit. Everything got neuted.

We killed the Thanatos. With their reps gone the Deimos bailed and we started shooting the Legion. The Deimos tried to land on top of our Guardians who hovered about 40k off the support fleet. I neuted the Deimos. Unless it was fitted with Projectiles it needed cap so I made sure that it didn't have any. I was also the closest point so I took care of that as well. The fleet finished the Deimos off and we switched back to the Legion. I decided Legion also needed cap. During this time Vand was logging in with a Phobos to take care of the pointing issue with the seiged dreadnoughts. An Ishtar appeared and we killed that as well. 

With the subcaps off the field we started shooing dreadnoughts. An ibis warped in which we popped in case it was a Cyno. An Enyo also appeared and died in a similar fashion. With everything pointed we ground away at the Moros. Kelts sent a Sleipnir to the field which we loosely aligned with. I think we accidentally killed their Keres but well... if it isn't purple... However, the poor Sleipnir popped under the Naglfar's guns. Our Guardians had him prelocked and he vaporized before their eyes. I was shooting with Sugar and keeping things cap dead with Silk. The Nag kept trying to shoot me and I just kept moving. The Moros died and we started in on the Nag. About halfway thorough the Nag dropped a depot. I called it and started to shoot it. We popped that before it went online and killed the Nag who kept trying to blap my curse. He was switching between me and the Geddon and landed a few solid blows on the Geddon. The Geddon hit his microwarp drive and left the field while the Nag missed me and I kited around and we worked him down.

Pop. About thirty minutes from start to finish and we were holding the field.

On Station a Hurricane bumped our link ship who had dropped links earlier when combat probes where out. He then engaged the link ship who was, surprise, surprise, tanked. The fleet landed on him and poof went the Hurricane. We then went back to hold our field and the rest of us reshipped alts or logged in new ones to clean up.

I've been asked several times since I started my CSM run about making money in PvP. Logging in haulers and cleaning the field and scooping all of the drones and fighters is how you make money. We walked away with a billion ISK in loot from that fight which we will split across the fleet or just give to the corp since we had no losses. I often see ISK just left out in space. Eventually, someone will clean it up or it will just despawn.

Once I dropped off the last Templar and docked in the stations I leaned back and said, "Holy shit." Did I really just dual box that fight? I have no idea what came over me. I decided that today, I was undocking and I was going to go all into that fight ISK, and losses be damned. I didn't care that I didn't know what I was doing. I had a pretty good idea and suddenly, today was the day to put it on the field.

I think my Faction Warfare fight last night gave me a tremendous confidence boost. It has never been about winning or losing for me but how well I do in a situation. When I took the fight last night and spent about fifteen minutes making all of the decisions until the other pilot left instead of finishing killing me, I was surprised. I was also surprised at how I knew what to do. I'm not calling myself a baller solo pilot at all but I have been out on the field doing spaceship combat for two years. It seems that, indeed, things have sunk in.

The total story (as I understand it) is interesting. Kelts was bashing a POCO with dreads when Immortal Wings BlOpsd in. They lost three BlOps Battleships and came back to drop Kelts and take down a Kelts dread. We then third partied in while the locals whos POS was being shot attempted to get on all of the kill mails. It makes for a messy battle report.

http://seventwo.killmail.org/?a=kill_related&kll_id=22080686
https://zkillboard.com/related/30002404/201402221800/

I absolutely love this type of brutal messy fighting. These are not everyday fights. They do not have to be. It's moments of intense excitement where local is quiet and everyone is focused. And no matter how it goes you know that it could easily be you on ehter side of the kill board.

2 comments:

  1. If it happened everyday it wouldn't be special well done

    ReplyDelete
  2. Most impressive! I too have had to jump in to combat with ships that I've trained to fly but just hadn't got a chance to fly them in fleet combat. In those moments a just take a deep breath and focus - it's amazing how a calming sensation just comes over me. Good job and I look forward to seeing you in Molden Heath!

    ReplyDelete