Tuesday, December 29, 2009


Getting frustrated with this whole corp-hunt thing.  I left the small corp for the larger corp.  And this one seems to have all of the tools necessary to be busy and successful.  But they don't seem to be using those tools.  We have a website, with forums and a calendar for scheduling events.  The new bulletin board in-game allows for announcements.  Fleet finder for finding what's going on when we get in game.

Alas, with 70 members (and often 10-20 on at a time) we don't seem to DO anything.  I fully accept that it may be something I'm doing wrong...time zone...something.  But I'm trying.

Monday, December 14, 2009

When in Roam...

So the post-posbash roam had a rough start.  The FC was late due to RL issues so after waiting a little while, one of the members decided to FC for a quick loop while we waited for the regular FC.

I've been on a couple of roams and feel like I'm about 100 years away from being able to competently FC a roam.  The situational awareness that the FC maintains, juggling systems, scouts, fleet and rear-guard is quite an act.

Our FC took us out and about looking for targets.   We were going to do about a 10 system loop-some lowsec, some nullsec.  After 3-4 jumps we started getting target reports from the scouts.  The targets were from Dust to Dust Alliance, which apparently my corp has some history with.  They appear to have us a bit out-gunned, flying BSs while we were all in BCs or Frigs.  We keep an eye on them as they appear to be shadowing us (hunter becomes hunted?)  As we sat in a SS eyeing the next gate we were about to take them on.  Then local spiked and scouts reported both gates into system were camped by D2D and soon probes were out.  The FC needed some time to evaluate the situation.  So he had the main fleet logout at the SS.  We stayed on vent to discuss the plan.  After about 10 min scouts reported that the D2D gang was dispersing.  FC had us all log in.

There were still 2 D2D ships at our target gate, and we figured we'd have no problem taking them.  We approached the gate and only one enemy Hurricane remained.  FC was getting reports from scouts about the other side of the gate.  Hurricane began targetting me.  FC instructs to engage.  I got a web and a damp on him when local spiked again.  Four D2D ships came through the gate.   I was apparently primaried for some reason.  Shield down and armor started slipping about 10% per second.  Then the rest of the trap was sprung...apparently two can play the logoff game as 8-10 more D2D ships warped into the gate.  FC called 'jump jump jump.'  They were into my structure as my lasers were working the Cane.  Got into armor when I popped.  Spammed to warp out and saved my pod (no implants, but it's a pride thing.)  Everyone else made it through and to a station.  The station I took my pod to was camped.

I waited in my rookie ship.  As the rest of the fleet regrouped and tried to evaluate their options for getting out, I decided to make a run for it.  I was able to get out of the station and warp to SS.  Now the gate.  As I listened to Vent, the main fleet was getting ready to make a break for it.  As they made a juicier target, I knew the enemy would be focused on them.  They started playing station games with the D2D guys camped in their system.  I made my move.  I hit the gate, jumped and kept going to get back to home station to re-fit.  It worked and I got back safe.  The rest of the fleet finally made it out a short time later.

Exciting, but a tad disappointing.  Still waiting for that first ship-to-ship kill.  It appears there is more dead pos bashing in our future.  It's good money and fits the pirate-scavenger MO.  But I'm still itching for a fight.

Friday, December 11, 2009

POS Cleanup

So, the pos op went down with no interference from the owning corp.  Our corp cleared about 750M in cleanup.  Took about 90 minutes on a large Caldari tower.  We were in about 13 BSs.

Since we had such a good group together, we decided to take a break and then head out on a roam.  Said roam kicks off in 2 minutes!  16 frig/BC.  Hopefully my first real pirate test.  Wish me luck.

Trying to Stick With it.

Ok...so my first PvP corp didn't quite work out.  But I'm currently in the rookie stages of a larger corp so we'll see how it goes.  The guys in The Protei were nice enough, but it seemed my schedule didn't really work as they were often not online when I was.

Ironically, the first op with my new corp is tomorrow and is also a POS bash.  I'm starting to wonder if there is more of this in lowsec than I was led to believe.  Maybe this time someone will come out to defend and we can have a little bloodletting.

Monday, December 7, 2009

I want to be...

There is a concept that I've thought about for a long time....long before I started playing EVE, but I see it being played out here just as frequently as in RL.

The basic theory is:

There are people who want to "BE" something, but are not willing to "BECOME" something.

I freely admit that I'm just as much a user of that philosophy as anyone else.  I picked up a cheap drum set when I was 19 because I wanted to BE a drummer.  After putting in one hour a week for three whole weeks I decided it was too hard.  I asked a drummer friend of mine to tell me the 'secret' to being a drummer and he said, "Well, start drumming five years ago three hours a day and you'll be pretty good."  Thanks.

EVE applications of this theory abound.  Lots of new capsuleers want to "BE" a pirate.  Taking on T3 cruisers in their T1 frigate and crushing them.  Taking their gang of three and bringing down a carrier.  The stuff legends are made of.  So they hop in their Rifter and head to lowsec.  And they get popped.  They grumble and try again.  This time making it through three gates before getting popped again.  They decide that there is some secret to being a pirate and start trolling message boards and guides and pirate corps to learn what that one little secret is that will make them the Dread Pirate Roberts of EVE.  There is a secret...but I'll wait to divulge it.

I read a posting this morning on the MD forums at EVE-O about someone who wants to "BE" a trusted third party for large value item sales.  He was mocked for a page and a half before he started getting the message that it's not just  a job you apply for and start doing.  You have to "BECOME" a trusted third party. 

Of course, in a lot of these situations players run into the age-old Catch-22 that you need experience to BE something.  But you need to BE something to get experience.  A lot of people quit trying at that point throwing their hands up as saying "it's impossible."  And yet, there are many other pilots that ARE doing it.

The "secret" to BEING something is...BECOME something.  Start small.  Get experience. Practice.  Learn from your mistakes.  Eventually you will BECOME what you want to BE.  You may not even realize it when you get there.  The first time you get an evemail from some guy you managed to pop in a fight that says "hey, GF.  Interested in joining our pirate corp?"

There really is no 'magic bullet' to make things easy...in EVE or in life.  Buying ISK with GTCs isn't going to make you a better pirate.  Winning the lottery isn't going to make you a successful entrepreneur.  Set a big goal.  Then set intermediate goals.  Then set some metrics to measure your progress.


I want to be a successful contributor to a respected pirate corp.
   --Read pirating guides and fitting guides
   --Take a PvP class with one of the many in-game schools
   --Setup five rifters for PvP
   --Set a route through 10 lowsec systems
   --When you can get three ships in a row through the systems, consider yourself trained at 'the getaway'
   --Go looking for some 'fair' fights.  Find a target, kill it, and get away regularly.
   --Start targetting specific pilots.  Maybe you're reading a blog by a pirate.  He/she probably regularly posts where they hunt.  Head there and hang out and start looking for a fight. 
   --Keep repeating.  Along the way you may join various smaller pirate corp/gangs, keeping in mind the one you really want to join.

The above plan could take 2-3 months to complete.  Be ready to spend the time.  Be ready to lose those ships.  Keep a good attitude.  Try to learn from your mistakes (Hint: some of your opponents might actually tell you what your mistakes were...listen to them...they beat you).

This went a little long, but hopefully it hits home with some people.  Work on BECOMING something, not just BEING something.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Mac Client

I play EvE on an iMac sometimes and PC other times.  I think it's really cool that CCP has that sort of cross-platform capability.

However, the Dominion patch has severely crippled the Mac client.  Lockups, failure to load and graphical glitches are among the problems.  It would be suicide for a player to go into PvP on a Mac client at this point.  CCP has stated that they are looking into it, but it is currently unplayable.

I hope they get it fixed soon.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Jury Still Out

Well, I logged in for a bit.  About a 10 minute download for the big Dominion patch.  Still adjusting to some of the new layout.  This is only my second major upgrade since joining the game, so I'm not quite as jaded as some of the veterans.

The 'new' UI is...new.  I'm one of those that keeps resetting his Windows settings to 'classic' mode with each upgrade (thanks Bill, for being an enabler) because I don't deal with that kind of fundamental change well.  But I have no choice in this case, so I'll get used to it I'm sure.

Played with the Fleet Finder.  If I was using it correctly, I appeared to be the only person with a sec status greater than zero looking for a fleet.  Messed with the email client, but I've only recently opened a gmail account, so this whole 'labeling' thing is new to me.  But all of my historical emails are jumbled together and it seems difficult to find new emails.  I noticed that there were several CCP/ISD types in the help channel answering questions at a pretty good clip.

Checked the forums and saw the list of known issues and other player-reported issues.  May wait until the weekend to get serious about anything so that the Dominion 1.0.1 patch can clear up some of those unforseen problems.  I have faith that things will be clear in a week or so.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

(not quite) First Blood

My first adventure with my new corp The Protei.  We assembled a fleet of nine with 5 BSs and 4 BCs.  The mission was a simple POS-bash.  It belongs to a small corp (The Reborn Generation) and apparently had no guns deployed. 

Once we determined the system was clear we approached and opened fire....and waited...and waited....and watched the shields slooooowly go down.  At about 50% (1 hour), activity in the system started picking up.  By the time we got to about 75% (1hr45m) they brought their carrier, a BS and a BC. 

I've never been in a fight with a ship larger that a BS, so I deferred to my more experienced corp-mates.  We warped around system for a little bit and headed for the NPC station.  Once there, it seemed that momentum wained and people began to drop fleet.  The station we were in was camped.

I'm not sure what to make of this.  Part of the problem IMO was that there didn't seem to be a reason to be going after the POS.  Granted I'm new to the corp and not aware of the history...but basesd on convos, it was just for 'the fun.'  So when we failed, nobody really cared.

We had a decent-sized gang going...it would've been fun to raise some Hell with other ships for 2 hours rather than sitting and reading blog posts on my iPhone.

The (lowsec) Adventure Begins!

After checking out a few lowsec pirate corps, I found one that appealed to my bloodlust and, more importantly would take in a PvP-newb like myself.  Ran a couple of names by Spectre from EVE Newb.  I joined up with Protei.  Things are kicking off with an op tomorrow morning, so I'll get a pretty good taste for my new corpmates and they for me.  My only concern is they're asking me to fly an Armageddon and it seems a little big for one of my first forays.  I've got one of my Executioners on standby, just in case.

But, it should give me an opportunity work on my battle reporting.  Wish me luck.

Friday, November 27, 2009

The Road

I've been anxiously awaiting the release of this movie for about a year.  I was handed the book by an old friend last year.  One of the most depressing and moving stories I've ever read.  I hope the movie lives up to the book.  Unfortunately it's apparently in limited release this weekend, so I need to track down a theater in the city that is showing.

The Dominion release is quite highly anticipated for various reasons.  Some expect one of the most significant updates in years, some anticipate the end of New Eden, and some expect the legendary NGE.  I'm optimistic that we'll all survive the December 1st release.  The scheduled 19 hour patch downtime is a bit off-putting, but I'm halfway through BS5 so I'll throw that in the queue and check back in when the dust settles.

Post Turkey Day Plans

All nicely tucked and full from a day of family and friends, sharing some bread and some wine.  I'm thankful that I have the luxury of time and money that allows me to participate in the EvE online community.

But today, my quest for a lowsec pirate corp to call home continues.  I was given a "thanks but no thanks (for now)" from Spectre3353 at The Python Cartel, so my search continues.  I've received a couple of responses from a posting on the EvE-O recruitment forum.  I am trying to decide between joining a newer, small corp or a larger, more established corp. 

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

One down, three to go

At the end of my AU PvP class roam, I was left with my four fitted T1 frigs in Stacmon.  Last night decided to take the first out on a spin in the same area the roam occurred.  We were warned at the end of class that Agony roams those areas and will shoot you if they see you....there is no standing gain with AU just for taking the class.

I'm still working on my 'battle reporting' so bear with me.

Headed out of Stacmon and set a course for a random lowsec system four jumps away.  In the first lowsec system I got away from the gate and proceeded to make a couple of safespots (SS) and TACs (tactical positions 150km from gates.)  I snugged down into a safe and tried my skill at the directional scanner (DS).   That was another useful class in the course.

Not having much luck, I hop to the next system.  Same drill setting SS, etc.  There were people in local, but I didn't actually see any here either.  So one more jump.  Good news and bad news.  I found targets!  They had the gate bubbled.  Ok....don't panic.  I remained cloaked evaluating the situation.  There were at least 3-4 targets.  Not liking my chances and cloak timer running out, I decide to make a run for the edge of the bubble to see how I could handle myself with whoever chased.  They were on me as soon as I started moving....I decided I wasn't going to make out of the bubble so the fight was going to be here.  Adjusted my position/movement (shield at 50%) locked a target, and sent some multifrequency love to him.  The fight went probably 45 seconds thanks I guess to my speed tank setup.  As I started to take structure damage I switched to pod survival.  Picked a target and started spamming.  Lo and behold it worked!  Got my pod out (salvaged a tiny bit of dignity, I guess.)

Bounced around the system in my pod to re-evaluate.  Decided that it was best to just charge back to Stacmon.  If I make it great.  If I don't....well my med clone was there anyway.

The trip back was uneventful.  Jumped into an Executioner and decided to roll around hi-sec a bit and work on my DS skills.  Found a few miners, but I don't know the exact rules of can-flipping so just tried to make them nervous.  No luck.  Headed to a Drone Infestation and found someone in a frigate working the site.  Stole some of his non-wreck loot from the site and jumped the acc gate into an empty deadspace complex.  One more acc gate.  A couple of drones floating around, so I thought I'd see if I could tick off the other pilot.  I'm not sure exactly what happened, but the other guy warped in and pretty quickly went flashy red.  SWEET!  I go after him, and got him down to 50% armor when he warps off.  Had sensor damps on this frig and couldn't hold him.  I spent 10 minutes or so flying around the system trying to see if I could bump into him again.  No luck.  Headed back to Stacmon.

Agony Unleashed PvP Uni Rocks

AU has apparently been conducting training classes for pilots of various levels for years.  For some reason they are not quite as well known as their (precedent? antecedent?) cousin EvE Univeristy.  There is a relationship between the two, but I was never able to crack the code on what it actually is.

After making the decision to head to lowsec, I had a chat with an EvEUni recruiter.  We came to the conclusion that my EvE-O experience (1+ years) made me an unsuitable candidate for their program, which is geared more toward new players.  He pointed me in the direction of AU.

They have a great site and the enrollment process is fairly painless.  However, classes fill up quickly, so you'll want to be online soon after enrollment opens.  A week before the class I was granted access to their wiki in order to study things like Rules of Engagement (ROE) and other conduct.  There are also great documents for ship fitting, as well as an EXTREMELY useful posting on how to properly setup your overview for PvP and your client for minimal lag.

Got to the starting station with my T1 Frigs...brought spares as instructed.  Fitted for EWAR.  A couple very informative hours of class time and practical exercises, and we were ready for a lowsec roam.  Alumni and AU Corp members fill the key positions in the fleet (FC, Recon, etc.)  The bulk of the class (50+) in T1 EWAR fit Frigs made the main body, broken into separate wings.

The roam went for several hours.  I'm not quite knowledgeable enough in blogging to give a proper battle report, but Wensley at Rifter Drifter did a great job.  I got in on a couple of KMs and a final blow but didn't actually contribute a ton of damage.  Took a couple of bomb hits, but again AU trains you on how to deal with those, so I survived the roam without the loss of a ship.

Got back to Stacmon and sat looking at four fitted frigs trying to decide if I want to take them back or leave them here and try to look for a fight.

Welcome to me

So, here I am.  Beginning a new chapter in my EvE-O career.  I've lead a fairly sheltered life to this point (read: Carebear) and am making my move to Low Sec ( I hope).

We'll see where things go from there.