Thursday, July 12, 2007


Operation "Atlas' Bane" closed 2 days ago with smashing success, and admitted defeats. The wreckage of EARTH Federation forces are no doubt still being cleared from the Amarr area sectors. It was a very successful contract…one that could have been even more successful if not for the counter-mercenary contract against us by EARTH.

In retrospect, it was nothing but pure symphony from a commander's point of view. While we were busy killing EARTH Federation...Maelstrom Crew (MCREW) was busy killing us. There is nothing sweeter than watching two professional mercenary organizations going about their business with the attitude that yells "business is business". To be fair, we were far outmatched by MCREW in most engagements we found ourselves in. Staying true to form, the LSD was fighting outnumbered and outgunned during most of the contract period. With MCREW entering the fray however, we were fighting a much more skilled opponent, and we sustained moderate losses as a result.

Since this is a Postmortem about the contract, I believe it was a good thing we got our butts kicked by MCREW. Over the last 6 months I had been advocating the use of "Phalanx" fleets to the LSD pilots...but it seemed as if everyone had better things to train for. A Phalanx Fleet is one that has a deep logistical component to it (in MCREW's case, heavy armor repair drones). The few close to even odds fights we engaged in clearly showed the power of such defensive cover a concentrated fleet could hold. In our last engagement we tried to break their tactical edge by getting an 8 large smartbomb Abaddon close to the primary target. Unfortunately, it was destroyed a mere 2000m from its target. As a result, we lost yet another battle.

Still...the LSD pilots are fierce warriors...even against incredible odds. We took our licks, and still dished it out to EARTH Federation for an 80% efficiency rating (average). While numbers mean nothing to our group...we also got the job done. United Earth (UEI) corporation shortly left the EARTH Federation alliance as the client wanted, and had considerable losses beforehand. While we had agreed with our client to war declare them if this situation happened, our client was satisfied with the level of destruction inflicted upon UEI. We called the contract complete, and we are still sorting the destroyed equipment we could salvage from their wreckage. It would seem that UEI is a much hated corporation as I had been contacted by pilots unrelated in the conflict with eve-mails of support.

The other noted development was the loss of a member corporation within the LSD. It had seemed my previous concerns were validated about Time Cube Syndicate (TCSYN). While I had assurances from their CEO that the contract action was fine with them, I had no idea of the internal problems that were going on inside the corporation. With a CEO that had been MIA for 2 weeks, the directors issued a mini-coup and left the alliance unannounced. A surprise for sure, but in the end Erfnam still controls the corporation...and they have a lot of rebuilding to do. While LSD itself did not cause them to leave, I am sure the contract opened their eyes to where their corporation position should be. We wish them luck in the future.

As for personal notes, the baptism by fire the OEC Blackguard received was noted. While Damnation class hulls are not overly known for their combat prowess, I threw the Blackguard into the frontlines regardless. With its crew more experienced now I have ordered the refit to a pure Fleet Command fitting complete with all 3 Armored Warfare electronics. I only lack CS 5 certification before we get the maximum benefit from such a configuration.

In the meantime, the Absolution Class OEC Vitae has entered service. My hope is that it will die a glorious death...but not before handing out mass destruction in its wake. Now...on to that CS 5 certification...

Thursday, July 05, 2007

Expected & Unexpected Results

The first 48 hours of "Operation: Atlas' Bane" has been going well...almost too well. We have racked up a 500+m isk loss on EARTH Federation, while only losing a bait Battlecruiser last night. We have performed two large fleet battles while not losing a single ship...unheard of in our previous contracts within the OEC (before LSD was formed). We have interdicted numerous other vessels and I expect our Client to be most pleased after reading our battle reports. The reason I suggest it is going too well is the fact that EARTH is now opening its wallet to hire some mercenaries of their own.

Maelstrom Crew has began operations in the vicinity of Beke and gearing up with a war declaration contract of their own against the LSD. While this is not totally unexpected, we had hoped our business would not be cramped in such a fashion. Still, that is the rules of the Cluster, and I know several LSD pilots are looking forward to grappling with a more competent combat force. If I remember right, MCREW used to be part of a larger alliance, but now they seem independent. I once had a lot of pride keeping up with all the mercenary news going on in the Eve Cluster...but tragically I am out of the loop these days running this alliance.

We still have a contract to perform, and our focus will be on EARTH as that is what we were hired to do. Maybe MCREW Fleet Commanders can give EARTH more success. Our inside intelligence operation suggests the conflict could dynamically alter in the next 48 hours...changing the scope of the contract on preset conditions. Once that triggers (if it does), EARTH may actually find out why someone took a contract on them, and we would move to a second phase away from them.

Expectations are always hard to manage, but with the dedicated cadre in the LSD it is easier to manage the chaos of a full fledged war contract.

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Back to Merc'in

The LSD moves into is first real contract of its existence in less than 12 hours. Our client has purchased our “Targeted Alliance Asset Reduction” services for a period of time, and we have filed the proper charter with CONCORD to get our declaration of intent legalized. Mobilizing an alliance is far less paperwork than when running a corporation, so instead of 48 hours it is only 24 hours until we go ‘weapons free’.

Our target is the E.A.R.T.H. Federation, a fairly large alliance of just about 400 pilots that should provide us with plenty of targets throughout Empire space. While we will never underestimate a target, our intelligence department labels them as a ‘soft’ contract. I have my doubts however, but hope to be proven wrong.

For Time Cube Syndicate, a new brother in arms, it will be a combat test to see if they like the style of fighting we do in LSD, as well as if they like the mercenary contracts we pursue. I hope they latch on to the alliance concept, but I recognize that they form the logistical aspect of our venture. Still, it is good to see pilots outfitting ships for the coming battles…I have no doubts about their will to achieve.

I will report more once the contract is under way. I have quite a few valuable fitted ships on the line, and my hope is that they will be severely tested in battle. It is the Amarr way…and the way of the LSD.

Contego LSD!