Wednesday, March 26, 2008

After the Party

The conquest of Delve has ended.

While I am sure many will disagree within the Coalition...their objectives have failed. There will be no invasion of NOL, at least in the foreseeable future. BoB forces are now busy cleaning up all the remnants of the invasion and retaking formerly controlled sectors. It has been hasty retreat, and we are finding a majority of the POS installations unguarded...easily looted and destroyed. I could not tell you how many POS module installations we have acquired over the past two weeks...but it is significant. Currently the Coalition has a stronghold in QY6, and there are additional enemy forces basing in the OK-FEM area. These will be the final battles of Delve for this campaign.

A minor offensive has been launched into Querious, mainly just to give a "one - two" punch while we clear our home sectors. While I wonder what our end goals will be, I assume that retribution for MC is not far down the pipe. Cutting off Querious would be a worrisome development to MC...making their logistic train back to Empire space much harder. Querious is so full of disjointed alliance adventures, there is no real cohesive defense in place. While BoB has been getting into big fleet fights...they are generally one sided at best (complete domination at worst).

Still, not all news is good news. Red Alliance 'hot dropped' part of their capital fleet on top of a small BoB capital fleet taking out an undefended POS. Lesson learned with 10 capital losses...and I suppose fair play. There have been so many RA capital losses to BoB over the last year it was almost fitting they finally succeeded in some small fashion. It also teaches the lesson of tactical moderation...losses will occur, so plan for it.

My crews have witnessed some spectacular fighting (and numerous victories) over the last few weeks. CONCORD (in junction with DED) initiated massive improvements to the Pod Pilot HUD on pod-captained ships that allows the disabling of Brackets. This was a huge burden on the communication systems of any pod-captained ship, but now with the firmware fix the effectiveness of my crews has jumped at least 150%. Staying on fleet targets, and maximizing defensive maneuvers has never been easier. Pod Captains that fail to switch over to these systems are really doing themselves, and their crews a huge disservice.

Update on the EVOL Blackguard...she has seen extreme fire and lived.

What a ship and excellent crew. During a POS removal operation, I took the Blackguard forward 2 sectors as advanced scout. We were close to PR- sector and enemy harassment fleets are still quite common there, basing out of the Blood Raider station found there (most likely at a higher bribe rate than BoB). Sure enough after several minutes a forward Vagabond Heavy Assault scout jumps in...I tell the crew to activate all defensive measures and wait for the ship to open fire. Sure enough, he warp scrambles me and begins to open up with his Autocannons. I get on fleet comms and explain the situation....

"2 jumps away (sector), Vagabond aggressed, expecting more hostiles. " I think the FC just took me for dead since I did not get a reply at first. "Damnation class Command Ship here. It will take them 2 weeks to break my 'tank...advise you clean up these clowns." I continued...

There was a bit of a laughter on fleet comms, and the FC sent the support component to my 'aid'. By the time they showed up in the inbound gate (I was on the outbound unfortunately), I had 6 Heavy Recon and Heavy Assault ships all pounding away at the Blackguard's armor. The ship was scrambled, webbed, jammed, and being slowly drained of capacitor...for well over 1.5 minutes (an eternity in nullsec combat).

Once the cavalry arrived, the enemy disengaged and got away....all except the initial Vagabond, who thought he could dance around without getting shot down. Lesson learned for one Vagabond pilot. I asked the FC to rep my armor back up in his Guardian class Logistics ship as I had no Armor Repair system installed...and he noticed I had close to 88% rating left.

"2 weeks is about right I reckon"...I could see him grinning as only one cycle brought me back up to full armor strength. 326k Effective Armor is no joke...except on the enemy ships that find themselves shooting at such a beast.

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