Monday, July 12, 2010

OMG!! I'm an Industrialist!! :O

I’ve gotten lazy in writing. (as if that’s not evident) It’s not entirely for lack of interest or sitting in my pod, but simply lack of anything really worth writing about. I’m certainly no teacher and most of what I’ve been doing as of late can be found and learned in much better formats and guides than I could ever detail.

So what have I been up to?

Lately, I’ve been doing things I thought I’d given up entirely when I moved to Nullsec. PVE was never really my thing. Of course, in order to make isk, it was a necessary evil really but ratting in 0.0 is, in my opinion, a lot different than running missions in Empire. First, you’re constantly on the move. Warp into a belt, kill the rats, salvage if you want, then move on to the next. Second, while ratting, you have to maintain constant visual on the intel channels as well as local. A ship designed for ratting is a lot different than one you’d want to get caught in a pvp confrontation with. However, a confrontation is always still a possibility and as such, you should be prepared. So needless to say, it’s not quite as mind numbingly boring as running missions in high sec.

Second, I thought as well that I would never touch another mining laser if my life depended on it. Yeah….umm…that’s changed a bit. Given the current event, Hulkageddon, my exhumer, Universal Stripper, has been packed away nicely in its hanger until it’s safe to once more undock. Yes, it is possible to avoid or elude suicide gankers, but frankly, my associate lacks proper tanking skills at this time and so I prefer for him to just avoid even a possible loss of the ship. Given the cost of the ship, it’s just not worth the risk. So mining will resume when the festivities have passed.

Fortunately, to deal with the time, my associate now has the skills to both manufacture as well as step up his research. I’ve been amassing a fairly large amount of BPOs in the past few months and he’s been working diligently to research the M.E. levels of said BPOs. I’ve also stepped up his trading work. Something I hadn’t really gotten into before was placing buy orders, instead having favored the buy low from sell orders in one region, and sell high in another. Sometimes, for quick isk, I just sold to a high buy order. Other times, if profit was more favorable (though I understand it usually is) I’d put up my own sell orders. This past weekend however, I stepped out on a limb and gave buy orders a try.

I have to say, I’m quite surprised at the results I’m getting! The buy orders I’ve placed have been filling up unexpectedly fast! And given they are less than half the price of what said objects are being sold at in other regions, I can easily see now, in full, how traders can amass so much wealth in what really equates to a rather short time. Currently, I only have about 200mil on the market in buy orders. However, as long as there isn’t a drastic change in the market, I foresee turning around and selling the goods at 500mil, thus netting me an easy profit of 300mil. And as fast as the orders are filling, I could easily take it to Jita, and sell it to buy orders there for an easy 200mil profit or sell it myself and get the full 300mil profit. That just comes down to how much time I’m willing to wait to turn a profit. Frankly, I’ve got nothing but time.

The other option I have, and this might be giving away a little bit about my market focus, is to actually take the products I’m buying and use them to manufacture an end product. That was my original intent really in placing the buy orders, but given the prices I’m acquiring the goods at, I’ve only grown curious to see how well they’d transition into an end product and then sold. Would the profit be better or worse? I’m horrible with making spreadsheets so I’ll have to keep my eye out for one that would suite my purpose and track the financial gain better than I could by mental power alone.

In the meantime, while my associate has been taking care of business back at home, I’ve drifted over to the nearest Federation Customs station and resumed running level 4 missions. Given my excellent standings with Federation Customs I’d gained while stationed in Solitude, the agent was really quite elated to work with me. So much so that she gave me a mission titled Angel Extravaganza right from the start. I’ve heard this to be one of the better missions so I really was somewhat excited by my good fortune. I still haven’t given up on running missions to gain standings with the R&D level 4 agents, but found myself in need of earning some more isk and quick.

Reason? One of the ships I’ve been wanting to get my associate was an Orca, a giant industrial command ship. It would make a great addition to his growing fleet of industrial ships. At present, he has all the skills to fly it, minus the actual industrial command skill, and can fit it fairly decently. However, I just haven’t had the spare funds lately to invest in what is a fairly expensive ship at current market prices. As luck would have it though, it seems a corp mate has been churning out Orcas about once per week and offered to sell me one at a greatly reduced price under market. It’s an offer that is just too good to pass up. I could have my associate skill up some more to build one himself, but I’d really like to get my hands on one for him sooner than that would take, not to mention how it would deviate from my current objectives.

Speaking of current objectives. Here is how he stands currently:
1. Production lines operational….operational yes, producing not yet.
2. Trade investments escalated….check.
3. Research wing operational….check

Things still needing work (in no particular order):
1. PI (Planetary Interaction) installations set up and operational. (have the skills trained, just haven’t implemented them yet)
2. R&D agents accessed and researching (Working on that myself..sort of..and will then piggyback his standings up to par)
3. Skills to efficiently reprocess mission loot drops.
4. Skills to efficiently refine ore into minerals.
5. Standings with the sovereign station corporation to have a location in close proximity of where the associate mines, whose refinery services he can then utilize at minimum expense. (Not a rushed necessity as other stations are close enough to just haul the ore to in the freighter)

I know this seems like I’m really stretching my associate’s skills out to fully accomplish all this, but that is the overall objective. Eventually, I intend to have him as the ultimate industrialist, starting from the base up, but able to work in any aspect, to some degree of efficiency, within the industrial side of New Eden. And so far, at roughly 11 million skillpoints, he’s doing quite well. It will still be awhile before he could even consider T2 production…but I’m thinking that by next year, he will have all the things listed above covered to an above average level and then be able to start working towards that. Oh, and hopefully by that time, I’ll have both a dreadnought AND a carrier and he’ll own and fly his own Rorqual, along with the Providence freighter and the Orca. Now that would make a pretty nifty personal capital fleet and would thus make my associate and me a very useful and beneficial member to have on any corporate roster. Only missing capital ship would be a jump freighter but um….yeah. At around 4 to 5 billion, that’s a good ways down the road. (oh, and this does NOT include Super Capitals, but frankly, I have no desire to ever fly them)

Monday, June 21, 2010

The Right Corp

Finding a corp that suites you, one that you can feel completely at home with, isn’t easy. In Eve, there are so many different types of playstyles, so many different personalities and goals and other aspects, that can make choosing a corp quite difficult. When I left Silver Snake Enterprises, it was not that I didn’t like their way of playing, it was simply a timezone issue. They had some awesome FCs, held some very entertaining ops, and just in general were some really good people.

It was a difficult decision leaving them, especially after they left Systematic Chaos (Sys-K), which was in my opinion a very good and timely decision, and joined Against All Authorities (-A-). I had some high hopes that my only qualm with being in the corp would change…. but in the end, I just wasn’t seeing what I was looking for. Most of Sys-K and -A- were European players and thus my chance for running ops with everyone were almost non-existent since I’m in the US. If I wanted to rat, mine, build or do other general PVE stuff it was a great corp/alliance to be a part of. But that’s not what I wanted. I wanted PVP, and I prefer the company of others when doing so. It’s entirely frustrating and demoralizing when 95% of the planned ops take place prior to you even logging on.

So when my real life buddy/roommate joined the pilots of New Eden, I took that as an opportunity and persuasive push to leave them and head back to empire. I spent a short amount of time helping him get his feet wet until we met the corp known as Valor.

Again, they were a good corp but just a few things began to bug me. First, although they did have a somewhat active presense in Empire, their primary focus was their home system out in NPC nullsec and they were regularly pushing for people to make their way out there. At first this sounded like a good idea but I wasn’t willing to go until I at least knew my RL friend could effectively live out there. Now, I totally agree that a new player could, in theory, survive out there. But without the base skills to effectively tank NPC rats in order to make isk, it really becomes a tough place to grow and develop. On top of that, I was not so sure, at that time, whether or not I wanted to go back to life in nullsec. I guess you could say I wanted a vacation. Eventually yes, but not at present. Plus, I’m Gallante, and thus, my main focus is on armor tanking. Pretty much all of their ops were centered around shield tanking and..well…I’ve been down that road before of attempting to shield tank Gallante ships and really had no desire to do it again. (plus my shield tanking skills are crap and really don't want to spare the time right now to train them further)

So when my roommate threw in the towel (actually, he decided to go back to cartoon land, otherwise known as WoW….ugh…), I decided to leave the corp and strike out on my own once more.

About 2 weeks passed and that brings me to the here and now.

I’ve been actively watching the recruitment channel as well as the forums. There were a few names I wrote down as possibles but most of them had one or two details that I just wasn’t so sure about. So I kept looking. Then, the other day, when I saw one that peaked my interest. I joined their public channel on Friday and after speaking with a couple of their directors/recruiters for a bit, I really felt that they sounded like the corp I was looking for.

My requirements were/are:
-Large US presence……check
-Heavy industrial focus and capabilites…..check
-Low tax rate……check
-Desire and capability for lowsec/nullsec PVP…..check
-No qualms against pirate activities both in lowsec AND highsec…..check! (hell yeah to Hulkageddon 3!)
-Can handle my often times sarcastic humor….check (a lot of em are active duty military or vets which I completely relate to being a vet myself)
-Room to grow and develop even further….check

So with those desires fulfilled, I feel I might have found a good group of people to fly with and really look forward to seeing how this plays out. Maybe someday I'll decide to return to Nullsec and once again join the battlefront. However, for now, I feel I have found what should be suitable for my current interests.

Oh, and I didn't realize this till after I joined but it seems the corp is also the home of another fellow blogger, miningzen, and his blog K162space.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Drooling for Infinity


Beware, non-Eve stuff below but seriously worth checking out I think.

So being a sci-fi nut, I'm always curious to watch the progress of other space MMOs. At this time, Eve pretty much has the run of the scene and for perfectly good reason. I mean, pretty much every other space MMO I've seen is just ugh in terms of graphics and gameplay. But that doesn't stop me from watching a couple hopefuls.

Today however, I came across a new one I hadn't seen before (dunno why...) and OMG it looks to have the potential of being just pure win. The video below is long but certainly worth watching.

Now if that got your attention, go check out the website!

It's apparently been in development for quite a long time now and doesn't look to be releasing any time soon but I think I'll be one happy gamer geek when it does!

Wednesday, June 09, 2010

Random Blatherings, Part..whateva...

So a little bit of an update upon my returning to the pod…

As any active follower of Eve knows, PI, or Planetary Interaction, is now in full swing. Although I took the time to train my industrial associate up to lvl 4 for pretty much all related skills, and am considering training my own skills up to help out creating higher end products, I have yet to jump on the bandwagon and actually set up my own PI installations.

Two reasons.

First, the land rush. With the introduction of PI and the possibility of having a semi-passive income stream, I envision a vast number of pilots in a mad rush to set up their multitudes of command centers, extractors and everything else. One thing I learned in watching the forums as well as playing with it a good deal on SiSi is that the location of the richest deposits on any given planet will shift once those deposits are mined out. I mean, I might be wrong about this but as of right now, that’s how I understand it. Keeping this in mind, I’ve chosen to wait it out a bit for the mad rush to be over and set up once things have quieted down and the deposits won’t be so shifty.

To me, PI is just like wormhole space and exploration in general. When Apocrypha came around, people went nuts training probing skills and making a mad rush for those unknown systems. The exploration career took a serious nose dive as well. (Which sucked cause I was already training at the time to get into it…) And now, as can be seen, the initial excitement of it has leveled off and things are flowing as normal as can be. I expect this will eventually happen with PI. Also, keeping that in mind, I’m not some sort of guru on market tracking. In fact, I suck at it quite frankly. But I’d imagine you can expect to see an enormous stream of products flooding the market soon. Because of that, sell and buy orders for said products will probably be excessively low until the initial flood calms. Personally, I think for the time being, the real money makers will be the people gobbling that stuff up to create the end products from the overabundance of low end materials.

Second, I am currently deep in Empire, a decent distance from any 0.0 system. I have no fear of operating, even solo, in a 0.0 NPC region and that is most likely where I will set up shop. Again, any person who has spent some time researching this knows what the reality is. Those planets in empire are immensely lacking in those new shineys. Just like moon mining, the richer deposits, the real money making deposits, are located in nullsec. So this is where I plan to go when I get around to setting up my own operation which I don’t want to move closer to until I have some other goals accomplished.

One objective is that I’ve currently have my industrial associate training a couple of long skills, Astrogeology V (to fly the exhumers) and Production Efficiency V. Together, that’s roughly 20 days till completion. So while those are training, I will be working on gaining enough standings to run level 4 missions for Duvolle Laboratories and will then have my associate piggyback to gain his own standings. That way, he’ll be able to access the high level R&D agents they offer. And once that task is complete, THEN I will probably move towards setting up my own PI operations.

As a further update on skill progression… My associate, after only like 8 months, is progressing quite well as a general industrialist. Only 10 days to fly a well fit exhumer, another 10 days to efficiently produce all manner of T1 products, and currently has a rather well balanced level of trading skills. Obviously, in training for all 3 areas of industry, he isn’t any sort of specialists and isn’t HIGHLY skilled in any particular area, but generalization is what I was aiming for (thank god though for neural remaps). In a few years I’m sure he’ll be one hell of a great industrialist. In fact, I know he’ll be an awesome industrialist in just about a year and a half. For now though, he’s almost to the point of where I want him to be to put him into full operational capacity. Ships he can fly include the Amarr freighter, Providence, the industrial command ship, Orca, and is really only a few days away from being able to pilot exhumers as well as the Amarr jump freighter, the Ark. (Although with a price tag of over 4 billion, I don’t expect to actually be flying one any time soon. It’s just nice to have that option for whatever corp I eventually join.)

For myself, I’m currently deviated to finish up a bit of racial cross training, but for the most part I am focused on training to fly and properly fit a Moros, the Gallante dreadnought and soon after that will the Thanatos, the Gallante carrier. At the time of writing this, I don’t have my skill plan in front of me but I believe all I have left for the long skills to train is Advanced Spaceship Command V with the other two long ones, Battleship V and Advanced Weapon Upgrades V now completed.

So that’s life in a nutshell. Now….back to the grind. (and insert mild grumbling here….)

Monday, June 07, 2010

Shame On Me

So for anyone reading my writings, I’m sure it’s been rather evident I haven’t written anything in quite some time. In fact, I guess it has been noticed when a fellow blogger called me out on it yesterday in the eve-bloggers channel, though I didn’t notice his comment given I was afk at the moment. Apologies Black Claw! Frankly, the reason for that is I took yet another random break away from life in the pod to pursue other interests. But…who can stay away forever from the addictive lifestyle that New Eden offers?

So in returning, I made a few changes to my status.

First, I left the corp that had so graciously kept me on their roster even during my time of absence. Once again, it’s nothing personal against any of them, but I think I’ve had a fair amount of time to evaluate my involvement with them and have come to the conclusion that I just don’t feel they aptly suite my current play style in returning to Eve. I’m a Gallante, with a heavy focus in my armor tanking skills and although I have the skills trained up well enough to use T2 shield modules, I lack in many other shield tanking support skills. Something I think people tend to overlook is that just because you can use T2 modules for shield tanking, there are a few other skills that increase your shield’s resistances. In armor, its things like the thermic, EM, kinetic, and explosive armor compensation skills. For shields, I can’t remember right off hand but I believe it’s the same sort. I intend to train these shield skills eventually, as obviously even when armor tanking, having just that little bit extra HP in the shields could always mean the difference between you or your enemy popping first. However, I have some other things I’m currently focused on.

Why do I mention this? Well their group focuses heavily on shield tanking and is the fit of choice for their roaming gangs. It is in fact very heavily impressed upon their membership to train shield tanking skills. That’s fine and dandy for them, but I just don’t feel like spending much time on those skills myself right now. Second of all, they are based in deep NPC nullsec. Although they do have a fair bit of presence in Empire as well, their focus is out there and getting their younger pilots skilled enough to move out there. I’m quite experienced with nullsec life now, so for me it’d be fine, but I made the decision to hang tight in empire while I get my associate trained up.

At the same time, it’d be nice to focus on establishing some standings with an R&D agent so he can eventually do T2 research. The easiest and fastest way to accomplish this is to use my already positive standings with the Federation and build up a good standing with perhaps Duvolle Laboratories, a member corp of the Gallante Federation, and then have my associate piggyback on my missions to get his standings up as well. If I come across a corp that already has great standings in the Gallante Federation, then I might consider joining up with them. The corp I was a part of however, I had to start from the bottom up with Kaalioka (sp?), a Caldari corporation, since my standings with the Caldari are…well…less than desirable. If there is a neutral corp out there with R&D agents, I’d be interested to know and would be willing to start from the bottom with them so as not to endanger my trading by getting banned from some faction’s space. Although something also tells me I need to get a fix on what I intend to have my associate researching. I think I might have heard somewhere that different R&D agents offer different goods for different research? I dunno…I’ll have to do some more digging.

So that’s where I’m at. Don’t get me wrong, I’m certainly not giving up on my lust for blood. Quite the contrary. I packed up all of our belongings, mine and my associates, and have already made the move to Gallante space. The system I’ve settled in, where the agent I’ll be working with for some time is located, is only a couple jumps from a fairly active lowsec constellation. So hopefully you’ll be hearing a lot more stories soon of some devious encounters. I mean, trust me when I say, I really need to build up my killboard! I took a glance at it the other day and I gotta admit, it looks no better than a full-time carebear’s killboard! This just stinks of wrong! What good is all this time spent training combat skills if I never seem to use em? Just to run missions or go ratting? Blah! I could have my associate trained up enough to do that nearly as well in perhaps a couple months! No, I have those skills trained to fight other pod pilots and that’s what I intend to do.

So with that in mind, I’ve thought a lot about becoming a full time pirate. I certainly won’t deny I’m already guilty of my own fair share of evil deeds. I mean, I’ve acquired some belongings in the past, or whatever I need, via the more devious methods… Small example, I needed salvage the other day to build some rigs for a couple of ships. Run a mission and salvage it myself? Why do that when there’s just so much salvage lying around already?? Instead I just probed out other mission runners and salvaged their missions for them! It was, by the way, at this point where I discovered ninja salvaging is actually quite dull in my opinion. I mean, I think I salvaged and looted something like 6 or 7 mission sites, and not once did any of the mission runners attack me in retaliation. What the hell?? Seriously, the only time I ever came under fire was when I warped into a mission site, saw the first room cleared out and the missioner gone. So I salvaged and looted it all, then moved into the second room only to discover the mission runner had left without clearing the second room of its NPC occupants. Oops! And of course due to complacency and slow recognition that the missioner wasn’t present, I nearly lost my beloved Catalyst, The Vulture, on that one. Otherwise, if I was salvaging someone’s mission, majority of the time the missioner would just keep on truckin or run home and grab his own salvager to try and gather what he could before I could get to it. Ugh. Total bore. So apologies to those ninja salvagers out there but ugh…I dun get it…

And then of course there was the occasional can flip. Which again, brought no pvp juiciness. A few angry tears but no real excitement. Oh, and I might be mistaken or just unlucky in finding em, but it was actually slightly difficult finding jet can miners. I guess it might help if I went to the less crowded systems maybe…

But can flipping, ninja salvaging…or any sort of high sec piracy is just not my thing. I prefer the idea of engaging other ships whom I know are packing some heat and will be a test of my skills.

So in summary, I’m back once again! And with a lot of pent up aggression to burn off I might add!

Oh…and the roommate?

Need I say more?

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Blog Banter: Captain Kirk Hates Eve

(I was going to hold off on posting this till closer to the due date. However, seeing some of the posts already being made, I’ve chosen to throw it out there now for your reading pleasure so as not to seem like I’m stealing from anyone else!)

Welcome to another installment of the EVE Blog Banter, a recurring EVE Online blogging extravaganza created by CrazyKinux, which invites EVE bloggers to address a common topic for a period of one week. Posts run the gamut: short, long, humorous, serious, and everywhere in between, but always fun to read! This month's banter comes to us from CrazyKinux himself, who asks: "What could CCP Games do to attract and maintain a higher percentage of women to the game. Will Incarna do the trick? Can anything else be done in the mean time? Can we the players do our part to share the game we love with our counterparts, with our sisters or daughters, with the Ladies in our lives? What could be added to the game to make it more attractive to them? Should anything be changed? Is the game at fault, or its player base to blame?"

For a sci-fi MMO, Eve certainly stands out at the top. It’s large, it’s versatile, and it offers a wealth of paths for those who like to play the game their way. You can be a pirate. You can be a miner. You can even be the next Emperor Palpatine of Nullsec if you have the drive (and a little Jedi magic wouldn’t hurt). But yet, if you’re the great emperor looking to find your perfect empress….well I hope you’re gay. Like, in the homosexual way gay. Because otherwise you’d better really flash them pretty teeth and hit the gym if you want to compete with the likes of Mr. Roc Weiler, who one would believe already has the edge on the only all-girl pirate corporation I know of, the Hellcats.

But why is this so? How is a man supposed to strive to be the next Captain Kirk of Eve, exploring the depths of space, wooing every gorgeous woman he meets along the way….when there is so few women to be found? What could Eve offer that would finally bring those women out of the shrouded nebulas to once more mingle amongst the stars with the rest of “man” kind. One would think the female population to be just as rare and mysteriously reclusive as those creepy Jovians!

But alas! There may be a cyno beacon in the distance after all and they call it Incarna.

Okay, so no. It’s nothing really ground breaking. Nothing extraordinarily original or highly complex. In fact, it’s probably going to be like 90% of the answers to this challenging question. I mean, I thought about saying that CCP should give you the ability to make more attractive male characters (lord knows how freakishly ugly or hideous most the characters are) but that just wouldn’t leave me much room to expand on so….Incarna it is! Oh, and for those who don’t know, Incarna is an upcoming release that good ole CCP has been haunting us with for sometime now, never really writing on veldspar when that will be. I mean seriously! Maybe if they’d just hire Chreeba? ….. just sayin…

But anyways… sit down for a second and let me tell you why Eve needs this. Why I think CCP needs to push themselves hard to realize this goal. And let me tell you how it relates to the female population.

I don’t want to throw all women into a single box and claim that all women are the same. If that were so, based on current statistics, there would be NO women in Eve. (thank god for cloning else the human race would be doomed!) So obviously there is some key ingredient that Eve is missing. Something that would bring in all those ladies New Eden is currently not seeing….which obviously means I’m excluding all those exotic dancers I know you guys are carrying around in your cargo holds! I believe the missing ingredient is what I’ll call Social Character Immersion; the ability to actually BE your character as you interact with your other pod pilots. The ability to see who it is you’re talking to and actually feel like your talking to them. The ability to dress and fit your character to represent your mood or just who you are.

Men in general are highly competitive. There is always a level of testosterone willing them to beat the other guy. The bigger the gun. The bigger the muscles. The bigger the….err…well anyways… When a woman comes on scene, she generally has to work extra hard to prove herself capable of competing with “the boys”. (Either that or she’s drooled over so much she ends up being flushed right back out with all the saliva…) With the release of Incarna however, it will open up a whole new world of social interaction, one that I feel will appeal to women much more. No more chatting via the chatbox to some soul you are completely disconnected from. Yes, it’s all bits and bytes, but being able to even see a real humanoid representation of a person is much more pleasurable then just staring at some static photo. Its reasons like this why virtual worlds like The Sims and Second Life are so popular amongst the ladies. Virtual social interaction.

But wait! There’s more!

Not only will Incarna give people the chance for virtual living, but from what I understand, there will also be various mini-games to be played. I can’t even begin to tell you how many women I know that have no real interest in long, heavily involved games. Instead, they’d rather sit down, enjoy some casual conversation, and play silly little games to pass the time. It doesn’t need to be anything too in-depth (and that’s not saying women are air-headed) but just garnering enough attention to keep it interesting. Mix that together with the virtual, social interaction and I can easily smell a win situation.

Incarna will bring a new era to Eve. It will be an entirely new galaxy that I believe will finally bring out the ghosts of New Eden…the true sleeper race. The women of Eve.

So have faith Captain Kirk. There may still be hope for you yet!

And here are just the first 10 of the other Blog Banter participants to get you started:

The Ladies of New Eden
Is EVE a man's world?
Sorry, No Pink Spaceships Here Please
EVE Blog Banter: Chicks 'N Ships
Eve Blog Banter: The Girls Who Fly Spaceships
It’s not about fluffy bloody Kittens people!
Space Boobies Are Bad, m'kay?
Special Blog Banter: I Like Girls
Special Edition or making Eve More Casual
I wish my wife played EVE

For a much more complete list (which appears to be growing daily), check out Crazy Kinux's full list of participants and their entries! And even better, get involved yourself!

Friday, March 26, 2010

Empire Grind

I made a comment on another’s blog post not too long back about visiting empire after being out in the darkest parts of space. For her, she lives in a wormhole system. For me, I was used to life in nullsec. They are two totally different worlds yet the same in many ways.

We, in 0.0, have the luxury of stargates for travel and local comms to tell us who’s in system whereas in a wormhole, they don’t. However, what we both share is the lack of populated systems. We share the fact that if a person isn’t blue, they are an enemy. If you see such persons on your overview, then its run, die, or kill. You live out of a corporation constructed outpost or a POS. You rely on your logistics teams to provide the supplies you need to survive because (unless you have an active market hub for your neck of the woods) most of the things just can’t be bought locally. In essence, it’s a place where the only rules are the ones you make and enforce.

And then you go to empire. There, you will see so many neutrals, it’ll make your head spin. I still find it a bit discomforting to arrive at a stargate and see 20 neutral ships just hovering around it. I go to Jita and I want to scream death at the myriad of pilots, my fingers hovering over my weapons systems. I have to consciously force myself to relax, reminding myself that attacking any of those pilots would bring certain, senseless destruction to my hard earned ship.

It’s a whole other world, empire is. And if you never leave it, you’ll never truly live.

But here I am, living in empire once more….. albeit temporarily. Well, since I’m here, might as well earn some isk right?

So yesterday I sat down and went over my standings with the various factions and NPC corporations. The corporation I’ve joined up with puts an emphasis on running missions for Kaakaliota (forgive me if I spelled that wrong). Why exactly, I’m not sure other than there being some high level agent in their home system. However, looking at my standings, it was going to take some effort before that agent would even consider giving me work. I mean, my standings with the Caldari, the main faction for the corporation, were a piss poor -3.87 (even with diplomacy 3). So needless to say, the best agent I could get was a level 1, quality -13. It actually felt pretty demeaning.

For a moment, I nearly just said screw it and go track down one of my old level 4 agents with Federation Customs. In the end though, I chose to suck it up and headed for the low level agent’s office.

Looking at me, I guess the all too prim and uptight Caldari woman could tell I was no fresh pilot straight out of the academy. Either that or she was sure I’d throw in the towel if she gave me what’s considered to be a very difficult mission for that level. This very first mission she handed me was code named World’s Collide. All I could do was just nod my head and smile and pretend like I cared as she briefed me on the mission’s objectives. To sum it up, two pirate factions battling over a small bit of turf, and some poor sobs got caught in the middle. So that’s where I come in. I guess they decided that sending me in to pull their sorry asses out was better than them endangering the life of someone they actually gave a damn about. Oh…and their reports said only a frigate sized vessel would be able to access the warp gates. Insert rolling eyeballs here.

In all truth, that was just fine with me.

Notifying my associate of my given task, I instructed him to pull the Ishkur out of storage and have it assembled and geared up asap. To his credit, that man certainly knows how to get things done. With a proper loadout already in the fittings computer, it was a quick breeze to get it all complete and I was on my way in no time. Props Mr. Associate!

Now last time I’d run level one missions for an agent, I was a lot younger in terms of my pilot’s license. I could remember the days of battling my way through this or that mission in my trusty little Incursus, hoping that if shit hit the fan too hard, I’d be able to make it out in one piece. Now, I dived into the mission head first, confidence flowing strongly through my veins. And for good reason.

Arriving at the scene, immediately the Gurista ships locked on and started to burn towards me. All I could do was smile as I engaged my own sub-warp drives and burned towards them in return. I can only imagine what they were thinking, seeing this crazy lone frigate careening towards them as if playing the old children’s game of chicken that we used to play on our bicycles when I was young. What they didn’t know was that this lone frigate had a whole load of friends with her in the hold.

As soon as I reached my ship’s targeting range, I quickly locked on and gave the command that sealed their death sentences. Immediately, five small hobgoblin II’s launched from the drone bay with nothing but destruction programmed into their little computer brains. I seriously don’t think I’ve ever seen ships turned to debris so fast. Literally, like 10 ships, one pass, and a trail of carnage left in my wake.

The Angel ships had also locked onto me from way over on their side of the field, but I could care less. I burned to the gate and after entering the initiation sequence, warped to the next pocket. There too, more Guristas attacked and more Guristas died in vain. Rinse and repeat.

So through the final gate I went and yet again, the explosions of Gurista ships lit up the blackness of space. I barely paid any attention to them as I flew to the incapacitated ship and immediately began the transfer sequence to pull the stranded pilots out. Once that was complete, I looked around and realized there wasn’t even anything left. My drones sat there idly staring at me as if to say they were depressed it was already over. I could do nothing but laugh as I recalled them to the ship and warped away, course set for the agent’s station.

And so it was for the next umpteen dozen missions I completed that evening. I think I spent more time flying to and from the mission sites than I did actually doing the missions. By the time I settled down for the night on my cozy little cot, I believe I was able to pull my rankings with the Caldari up to about 2.07 and my standing with the particular corp up to about 1.40. Not bad at all for a single night’s work I dare say.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Random Blatherings

An old alliance mate of mine from Systematic Chaos, Manasi, posted an entry the other day that I have to give props to. It really does, in my opinion, sketch out the various differences between high sec, low sec, and null sec.

One of the questions that were raised in his comments though was one I KNEW would probably be asked at least once. He stated in his chart that high sec has low risk, low sec has high risk, and null sec has almost no risk.

Wait a minute…..what?!?! Null sec has almost no risk?!? That certainly can’t be true!! I mean…its Null sec!! There’s no Concord to protect me!!

Well…at first, and especially to those who have never lived there, that’s exactly how it could be seen. But the truth of the matter is that it’s quite the opposite. I was actually just touching a bit on this the other evening with the roommate. We were talking about whether or not a new player could survive in Nullsec. This is something that has been discussed a few times in the blogosphere as well and so far, most are saying they are of the opinion they could. In some respects I agree with that. In others, I completely disagree. I do not agree that a brand new player, fresh out of the academy and having just finished his/her initial tutorial missions, should be heading out to nullsec. Well…let me rephrase that, I agree that a new player, fresh out of the academy could IN THEORY survive, but the reality is the opposite and for one major reason, lack of piloting skill.

As any experienced PVP pilot will tell you, or for that matter any experienced combat pilot in general will tell you, it’s not always about how many skillpoints you have or what ship you’re in. It’s about knowing how to fit and fly your ship properly.

And all this newbie talk brings me to my next line of thought.

In an effort to sort of mold my associate industrialist into the Eve world, I’d recently had him apply and get accepted into a claimed full fledged industrial corp. Original intent was to learn a bit from more experienced industrialist pilots. Unfortunately the info about the corp by the recruiter turned out to be rather false. One is that, so far, the oldest member I’ve seen has had their pilot’s license for only 8 or 9 months. My industrialist has been a pilot for 5 months. So I guess in their eyes, 3 months more than my associate made them experts? Oh, and little do they know that the 5 month old industrialist is related to a pilot who is as old as I am. Mind you, I’m not laying claim that I am that old or even that a person’s time spent in Eve makes any relevant difference. I AM however claiming that I definitely feel far more knowledgeable and experienced than they are.

Two, they are not industrialists. Carebears yes, but not the industrialists I was looking for. Pretty much what they are is PVE’ers. Very little other conversation takes place other than who has what mission and what ship to bring and how to fit said ship for that mission.

Third, I don’t have that much of a knowledge base in terms of POS design and operation, but it appears none of them have even done any sort of prior research as I have. They were telling my associate about their intent to set up a POS when he first discussed joining. Yet after joining, I’ve recognized that they were still almost completely clueless about how to do it. They didn’t even know WHERE they would be able to set one up. I mean seriously, I think I’m going to have permanent scars on my tongue from the number of times I’ve had to bite it, just to maintain this naive persona I’ve been portraying. Oh, and I think the only reason they did start discussing the idea of putting up a POS was because I’d brought it up in the interview.

So my associate stepped up a bit and in essence gave them the low-down, as well as some links to some of the numerous POS guides available on the web. It was also suggested that instead of grinding up the standing as they were talking about doing, (while continuously accepting new recruits…), that they should consider purchasing one of the premade corps offered in the trade forums, get the POS setup, and then create an alliance with that corp. From what I understand, the only people you would actually have to keep in the corp would be a holder alt. Instead, the CEO of the corp shot this idea down with absolutely no second thought.

Well that just didn’t work for me since one of the main reasons I looked into getting my associate into a corp was the possibility to use a POS for BPO research. With the likely chance of that not happening, at least not anytime in the near future, nor anyone that could help me develop his trade, then I see no reason to keep him in that corp. And for this reason, I’m intending to have him join up with me in the corp that I will likely be applying to later this evening.

As a side note, I am not a griefer or a scammer and have never had any intentions of robbing or harming them in any way shape or form. Although it is felt that the recruiter lied prior to joining them, that will still not be reason enough for me to rob them, given my associate lied to them by not making it clear his relationships. Besides, I’m not sure they would have anything substantial enough to rob them of and potentially lose my credibility over.

Monday, March 22, 2010


Yeah, I know. I’m perhaps the most wishy-washy person in Eve. Well, probably not the worst, but with current happenings, I could be trying to compete.

Basically, as those who read my writings know, my corp left Systematic Chaos and joined up with En Garde. I’ll say now that En Garde is basically a testing ground for eventual corp acceptance into Against All Authorities [-A-]. Although I was excited about the possibilities this represented, I did a lot of deep thinking this past weekend and realized, what’s the beauty of being in a corp whose becoming a part of -A- when your own corp probably doesn’t fully trust you. And why should they? I’m rarely on when most of them are (that being mostly weekends) and rarely available when CTAs are taking place. They have corp roams quite often as well, but again, it’s usually before I’m home from work. And with that in mind, I wouldn’t be surprised if most of them just see me as a name on their roster, who appears to be rarely around. Thus I made the final decision to just pack my bags and find more fertile grounds for me to grow.

Ironically, in helping my roommate get his feet wet in Eve, as well as helping him decide whether Valor would be a good corp to join or not, it ended up helping me as well. My roommate has been telling me a lot of good things about the guys in his corp and working hard to persuade me to join them. And finally, after having a chat with both their industrial director as well as their CEO, I gave in and made the decision to put in my app and give them a go. I won’t have to miss out on my nullsec candy as they have ops constantly going on in 0.0 (for security reasons I won’t state where) as well as high sec operations. This will currently mean not being a part of the gigantic fleet battles I’m so affixiated with, but then hell, how many was I actually able to be a part of with my current corp? Also I think they would be a lot more helpful for me to nuture and fully develop my industrial associate.

So yeah. This past weekend was spent pulling my ships out of Catch and now all I have left to do is get my jump clones out as well. (and before someone suggests it, my jumpclones have some rather expensive implants in them that I’d really rather not lose)

Speaking of the associate, I have to say he’s actually doing really well. I mean already he’s made over a billion isk and with a little help from me, he was able to buy a freighter, the Providence, this past week without having to spend any of his own income. Reason for his success is that he found one of the little niche’s in the market that so many speak of and has really been taking flight with it. And the best part is, he doesn’t actually have to leave station in order to manage it all. However, to get the highest returns, he does undock quite regularly in order to move the goods to a more convenient location for the buyers. And this is where the freighter will come in handy as he’s now able to move more volume and thus expand to a larger scaled operation.

It really has amazed me how much isk a trader can generate just to provide convenience for consumers. I mean, I’m not going to deny it was difficult at first to allow myself to invest much isk into his operations, without the solid assurance that I could get a return on it, but in the end, it proved to be much better than I’d even imagined. There are still a few things I’m a bit hesitant about, but slowly I’m becoming more trusting in doing so. Currently, between myself and my associate, the total for our accounts is sitting at a cool 900 million in liquid isk, with about another 6 or 700 million in various trade investments. To the big industrialists, this isn’t much. But to me, given I went from my associate being mostly inactive since I first hired him and then actually making moves in like the past month, a billion isk in a month is not bad at all. And that is excluding getting the isk acquired for purchasing the freighter and thus the ability to really increase his operations. And soon, he will be able to begin production on his own stuff (after having collected hundreds of researched BPOs and BPCs from the contract market) I’m just waiting for him to get production efficiency to 5 before he begins actual production, in order to build things with the highest return rate after material investment.

This is something many new industrialists probably don’t grasp from the beginning. When building stuff, it is best to have production efficiency to at least lvl 4. I did the research and double checked the numbers and, at least from what I’m seeing, if you’re not mining your own materials, it appears you really can’t break even on manufactured items until you’ve reached lvl 3. To forgo getting lvl 5 in that skill simply because it takes so long to get is just wasting minerals as the difference is really quite significant. Eventually, I’ll also have my associate mining his own minerals so that I can decrease the up-front costs as well, but for now, getting that skill to 5 has become top priority. So current time standing: 19 days.

God I hate those long skills.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Associate Update

My associate is a trader / industrialist. When I started my Eve career, I started as a miner / explorer. Eventually, like many, I realized that mining was really not all that entertaining, I’d chosen to sell my other self and used the isk to buy my new, combat focused self a plethora of ships and gear to sustain my life out in Nullsec for quite some time. Well… funds started running low and I began to consider real options for making isk.

One option I'd looked into, and found a small niche for, was building and trading. But that created a couple of significant hurdles for a fairly young pilot. First, I could not feasibly do the training myself. The time needed to train the necessary skills for building/trading as well as for flying an efficient hauler (and eventually freighter) would be time lost in training my combat skills. I did train enough to do some light building of T1 stuff such as rigs, T1 ammo, cap charges and T1 ships. (up to cruiser size I believe.) However, anything beyond that would just be too much time wasted.

The second hurdle was that much of my trading would have to be done in empire, given I have no intentions of investing that much time into training for a proper nullsec hauler. Flying an Iteron IV and with the improved cloaking device II, I’m able to give myself some bit of safety but it certainly is no blockade runner, transport ship or even better, jump freighter. Eventually, I do intend to be flying a carrier but that’s still a good ways off as far as I’m concerned. I mean, even if I focused entirely on a carrier now, it’d still be a solid 6 months before I would even feel comfortable enough to sit in the pilot’s seat.

So if I am to seriously get into industry / trading, I felt I had only one real option. Hire an associate.

Now, standing at roughly 5 million skillpoints, my business partner is already proving to be an invaluable addition. Amarrian by race, he can effectively fly the Amarr freighter, known as the Providence, along with transport ships, blockade runners and even a retriever, though lacking proper skills for energy consumption and T2 mining crystals. He also is a fairly decent trader now as well as builder and researcher for the same things I can do… and then some. Basically, he makes enough now to sustain himself and get the numerous skillbooks he needs, but not enough to support my combat life out in Nullsec.

A lot of his training comes from my past experiences in Eve and a lot of the knowledge I’ve gained about skill training since I first got my pilot’s license. When I hired my associate, I was adamant about spending the first couple months training his learning skills up to 5 for all the basics and 4s for the advanced. I also spent a good bit of time on EveMon and created a skill plan for him that pretty much maps out the next two years of training. In doing so, I also took into account the available times for him to do his neural remaps, keeping in mind to make him as useable as possible from early on…. but still managing to map it so that I feel I was able to give him the most efficient training plan a person can get for an industrial manager. Keep in mind, this plan does create a slight vacuum for the next 3 months as he will be training a couple of skills that won’t see their real use until much later on. However it was necessity to make best use of time and the 2 initial remaps a new pilot gets.

Now I just gotta get up enough collateral for him to invest in some real market trading as well as buy a freighter to haul it in.

Given I have not, nor do I plan on bringing my associate into my corp at this time, I’m considering putting a jump clone and a PVE ship in a station where I’m able to run level 4 missions. With me killing everything and my associate following behind with a salvaging ship, I could make a lot more isk, a lot faster, in Empire than I could doing it solo out in Nullsec. It might also give my roommate some more opportunities to run high level missions to help raise his standings, as well as get a chance for us to hang out in-game. Sure it’s spending time in Empire that I don’t really want to do, but to roll in the isk without bringing my associate into my nullsec corp, I think this may be the most viable option.

So……why did I write all that? Major reason is that writing things out helps me organize and rationalize to myself my own thoughts. :D Second reason is to give yet another example of what experience can give a New Eden pilot, besides just how to fly and fit your ships.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Who What When Where Why How??

I'm not really a part of the blog pack or the blog banter that many of you have seen on many of the other great blogs out there but this one I couldn't help writing a bit about myself and I'll tell you why in a moment. But here's the usual intro stuff:

Welcome to the sixteenth installment of the EVE Blog Banter, the monthly EVE Online blogging extravaganza created by CrazyKinux. The EVE Blog Banter involves an enthusiastic group of gaming bloggers, a common topic within the realm of EVE Online, and a week to post articles pertaining to the said topic. The resulting articles can either be short or quite extensive, either funny or dead serious, but are always a great fun to read! Any questions about the EVE Blog Banter should be directed to Check out other EVE Blog Banter articles at the bottom of this post!

The third Blog Banter of 2010 comes to us from ChainTrap of the Into the unknown with gun and camera EVE Blog. He asks us: "Eve University turns six years old on March 15th; six years spent helping the new pilots of New Eden gain experience and understanding in a supportive environment. Eve is clearly a complicated game, with a ton to learn, so much that you never stop learning. So, the question is; What do you wish that someone had taken the time to tell you when you were first starting out? Or what have you learned in the interim that you’d like to share with the wider Eve community?"

As I said, this one actually struck a chord with me. Recently, my roommate has finally torn himself away from his usual MMOs like WoW and Aion to give Eve a real try. It's not his first time, rather his second, but then I'm partially to blame for his first failure to really get caught up in it. A bit embarrassing but with him as well as a couple other friends being on WoW, they talked me into giving it a try instead. So I did, and just as I figured, I got a character to lvl 80, and then said, now what? Grinding for acheivements and gear was just horrendously boring and with nothing else really to offer other than to start a new character and grind that one to lvl 80, I soon just deactived my account. How people can play that game for years and never stop enjoying it I really don't get. After a while it really does become so insanely monotonous and repetitive, no matter what character you roll. My friends kept gettin annoyed with me the whole time too because I was always finding it much more entertaining to just go exploring than to work on leveling up my character. They kept tellin me it gets better when you reach the end game material. I did finally reach it.... and it didn't get better.

So anyways, as I was saying, I recently got him to try Eve out once again. I'm constantly telling him of all the action and events going on out in Nullsec and it's really peaked his interest. He's like me in that he loves stories of large fights and the strategy that goes into them. He loves hearing the latest news of who's fighting who and what led up to them fighting and so on so forth.

So once again, he's stepping out into the voids of space and seeing what treasures lie in wait. And of course, being his roommate, all you experienced players can only guess the number of times I've had to go sit with him and help him figure out this or that.

The thing I realized in doing this is the very answer to this the question posed by ChainTrap in this installment of the Blog Banter.

It comes down to one word, Corporation.

Something I don't think is emphasized enough anywhere really is the importance of finding a good corporation to join as early on in your Eve career as possible. And don't just do as I did and join the first corporation that sends you an evemail invitation. I'm not saying joining one that sends you a random invite is bad. I'm just saying that before you join, you should know what to look for in a corp.

I didn't really know anything about corporations when I joined my first. I just figured they were groups that joined up together to keep each other company. I didn't realize the benefits or the help that older members could offer to newer pilots. I didn't know what sort of things to look for such as forums, vent/teamspeak accessibility, ship replacement programs, and even timezone issues. My first corp was started and built by newbs. Every member in my first corporation was no more than a few months old and for the most part clueless about Eve. I mean, we got the jitters just from the idea of traveling through a 0.5 sec system because it's dot on the autopilot was yellow rather than green or blue.

So when my roommate started out and started getting random invites, I did my best to help him look at everything the corp had to offer and give my thoughts or opinions, pointing out the pros and cons I could see. In the end, I think he joined what appears to be a well put together group called Valor Inc. who I believe will be very beneficial in helping him learn and develop his skills in Eve. (and perhaps not bug me all the time for help and answers! :D)

Let the Fires Rage

This weekend I had my first real opportunity to truly experience the epic lag that has so many capsuleers up in arms. When I was in college, I actually majored in Multimedia Technologies, with an emphasis in video. I loved every bit of it and had truly intended to continue in that field yet life threw me down a different road. Anyway, reason I point that out is that I’ve wanted to try my hand at frapping a fleet battle and other activities in Eve and possibly see how well I can do at making a video of it. Unfortunately, I don’t know how I’ll ever be able to include a large fleet battle with the sort of lag I experienced during the op.

Prime example following.

In the continued efforts by Against All Authorities and Ushra Khan to burn Providence, a fleet was gathered this past Saturday to put an I-Hub into reinforced. Intel had been gained that CVA had amassed a rather decent sized fleet to defend the system so we were expecting a good fight. At one point, I think I heard the FC say something about our opponents having close to 400. (but I’m not positive on that and later found out Atlas was already there. Thus, I don’t know how many they had so can’t really judge by the local count.) Our fleet in itself had roughly 200. Even if CVA did have 400, we were certainly not daunted by their numbers. One thing history has taught us is that CVA lacks in organizational skills to handle large fleet battles. That’s really not the best way to word it as I’m sure they have some great FC’s, but with so many corporations and alliances being mixed together to defend their systems, they lose a lot of the cohesion and organizational training that the other nullsec alliances have.

Anyways, we waited at our staging POS, hovering around the titan, waiting for the FC to give the command for the Battleship and support fleet to bridge in. Soon enough, the order was given and we all jumped.

Things for me got a little crazy at this point. I’m not entirely sure what happened but immediately the FC started calling targets. However, for some strange reason, I’m looking around and seeing absolutely nothing. Everything seemed to be appearing correctly on my overview yet there was nobody around. So I randomly picked another pilot I knew to be in a battleship and pressed the warp to. Sure enough, my ship turns about and soon enters warp. I don’t recall a titan bridge ever working like that before. Dropping people in the destination system at random locations?

Either way, I arrived just in time to see a nice long list of enemy ships and started locking em up one after the other, doing my best to make sure to include the ones the FC was calling as primaries and secondaries. I didn’t even think however that I’d managed to lock any of them fast enough to even get a shot in but the following day, I’m glancing at our corporation’s killboard and realized I was actually the final blow for one of the hostile battleships. Really quite amusing I have to say seen as I seriously don’t recall being able to shoot anyone. Between them running, ships turning to dust in seconds, and the lag itself, hostile ships were just disappearing too fast for my systems to keep up with.

So basically CVA was quickly bugging out. Only ships we really killed were the few stragglers that weren’t quick enough to run. We then warped to the I-Hub, shot that for a bit, got news of some ships jumping in system, warped to that location to engage, they again were popping what seemed like faster than the FC could call em, warped back, put the I-Hub into reinforced, then proceeded to manually fly back to our original staging system and titan bridged the rest of the way home.

So all in all I’d have to say it was probably the fastest CTA I’ve ever been a part of. I think we waited for the jump in longer than we were actually there shooting.

Now lag for me wasn’t as bad as what I’ve heard it being, but it was still a pain the ass. Either way, at this point, for a video I may just have to settle with small gang fights.

I’m also in the process of figuring out a good video editor to get for doing this. Currently, as I’m believing most people use, I’ve been playing around with windows moviemaker. However, I’m considering other options such as Adobe Premier (given my passion for Adobe products) as well as a few others. Any suggestions would be happily welcomed.

Oh, and I have to say that thus far this move by the Corp has been great. I’ve seen more CTA’s and fleet action going on than I have ever recalled. I’m actually beginning to wonder if I’m ever going to find time to carebear and make some isk (something I’m getting to the point of needing desperately as my wallet starts to look a little barren). Given the corp is attempting to prove itself to our new alliance brethren, we’ve established a rule that if your not in fleet during a CTA, you need to log off. This is simply to show that Silver Snake Enterprises is not just going to be a buff in numbers, but an active and useful asset to the alliance. And I’m proud to say we’ve all held to that mindset very well.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

I'm L-A-Z-Y

Click on the map to get a bigger version.

So in light of the numerous other writers showing their maps of where they been, it got me curious as well and I pulled up the map to have a look. To be honest, I'm rather surprised. This isn't a version of the map I look at very often and looking at it now, I really don't get out much do I?

You can see where I've spent a good portion of my time up in the Solitude region with Gato Nero and then living down in the south with Systematic Chaos. And of course the varied journeys through -A- space as well as our recent invasion into Delve and Period Basis after the Goon failure.

Fun little map I have to say and definitely something I might try to make more colorful as time goes on.

Tuesday, March 09, 2010

Changes in the Solar Winds

So yeah, I admit, I’d lost the motivation to write. Sort of. It’s also been because I’d lost a lot of motivation to even log into Eve. Truth is that I gotten completely frustrated with the recent wars. First with Goonswarm and then the skirmishes with CVA. It’s not that I didn’t like the wars. They are what I yearn for, to take part in the massive battles to control systems. But that was just the problem. Even being in a nullsec corp, I was spending all my time reading about them rather than being a part of them. Most of the large battles you read about on the forums or in others writings all happened before I would get home from work. And it’s not like I work odd hours. I work a normal Monday through Friday with the occasional Saturday, 9 to 5 job…..but in US time zone. Some were in progress when I got home and logged in, but by the time I could get there, the fight was coming to an end or in the case of D-GTMI, I was told the gate was too hot, do not jump in system. So obviously I was getting a bit frustrated and then the topper came when someone in my corp gave me a little bit of shit for not getting in on any of the latest wars or roams. That just sort of sent me over the top.

But okay, I’m done whining now.

So I was asked one day, why am I still there then. Well….to be quite honest, I was in the process of moving my stuff back to empire. I’d gotten most of my larger ships, the battlecruisers, battleships, and iterons full of gear, in a station one jump from HED and managed to find (after moving all the larger ships) a wormhole path from our home base in Esoteria to a low sec system one jump from our high sec staging base. This allowed me to move all my cruisers and frigs out quickly.

So all I had left to do was wait for opportune moments to get my gear through HED. Everything was out of Eso except for one clone (no implants) and a T1 frig available for me to use when I decided to get that clone out. That of course was when the corp directors, and then other alliances, threw a wrench in my plans.

First, news was released from the higher ups in my corp that Silver Snake Enterprises was leaving Systematic Chaos alliance. It was something they’d been working on for some time as I understood it. And frankly, I was quite happy with this new direction. So I told myself, ya know what….how bout I just sit still for a bit and see how this goes. So that’s exactly what I did.

Soon enough, information was given regarding our new home and immediately a number of people put up the contracts for the logistics to move gear. This of course was when a particular new corp member who’d somehow gained more access rights then he should’ve had, accepted nearly all the contracts and ran off with it all. I can’t recall the exact amount he ran off with in assets, but in terms of our corp finances, it really wasn’t that much and I believe most of it has been replaced already. As is usually the case, this theft was in some ways good for the corporation as it also forced the directorship to reevaluate our security measures and it appears we have an even more secure and stronger logistics system now in place.

So anyways, given most of my ships were way up near HED-GP and the rest were in empire, I couldn’t help out much with the move itself. (Not that it mattered as the main moving ops were scheduled for….you guessed it, while I was at work still) Either way, the move was nearly finished when another small wrench was thrown in the gears.


Stain Empire (SE) and Coven decided to reset Systematic Chaos (Sys-K). Here following is the chronology of events as I recall them from memory.

1. SE decides to reset IT Alliance either before they had time to reset SE as well, or just never told IT they were until after the fact. Point is, IT pilots were suddenly finding themselves under attack by pilots marked as blues.

2. IT of course was angered by this and immediately went to war with SE. As I understand it, IT were staging their attacks on SE space out of Sys-K stations though honestly not sure on that personally.

3. Coven, being a long time partner to SE, decided to step in as well, doing the same resets as SE.

4. Sys-K says we’re not getting involved. It seems, however, SE didn’t take to this well at all and thus reset Sys-K.

5. At first, it was not a huge deal but then SBU’s were dropped in Sys-K systems and all-out war commences.

6. For reasons I’m not entirely sure of, Atlas decided to get involved and reset SE/Coven.

7. Sys-K was returning from their operations in Providence, helping UK and Against All Authorities, -A-, in their fight against CVA when SE/Coven attacked. A few Luigueania Romania (nor sure I spelled that right) were in the Sys-K fleet, and being a part of the fleet helped in the fight. This didn’t sit well with SE/Coven, so they reset them as well.

8. Against All Authorities, -A-, have thus far chosen to stay neutral. Possibly to avoid having to fight two fronts, or possibly just not wanting to have to choose a side. Though if SE/Coven doesn’t stop bombing Sys-K and others at -A- jump bridges as they have been, then that may change.

In short, at least the way I see it and I’m just a grunt, SE/Coven may have bit off more than they can chew. Also, I don’t claim to have the best of memory and am too lazy to look through all the forum posts (I may or may not edit this later). So if my timing of events is a bit off, I apologize in advance.

Oh, and just so I don’t leave poor Bricks out, who pretty much have made themselves a decent little presence in the NPC Stain regions, they too are attacking SE/Coven….but then that’s not really anything new. And no, they are not aligned with Sys-K in any way, shape or form. They’re just doing what they’ve always done. Shoot everyone and smack talk local.

But anyways, to make clear one very important point in all of this, Silver Snake Enterprises (SS.E), my corporation, did not leave Sys-K due to the conflicts with SE/Coven. Our leaving was already in the works long before these wars broke out.

And as for me… Well, I’ve decided to stay with SS.E at least for a bit longer. With this move, I see the possibility of getting in more fleet action and thus find some more entertainment for the US folk within the corp. I do love nullsec and the large fleet ops, and I really just don’t want to leave. So perhaps with this move, things will be a bit different. I’m definitely willing to give it a chance and see. And hopefully once again find the motivation to write. I’ll keep y’all posted.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

The Goonswarm Beehive Crumbles!

Is Delve cursed? One would certainly think so!

As of this morning, it seems the map of Eve will once again change drastically! Just as it did back when Band of Brothers (BoB) were betrayed and disbanded by one of their own directors. However, unlike BoB, the sudden loss of sovereignty came from an entirely different mechanic failure. The CAOD forums are on fire as IT, my own alliance, and other friends are dancing in utter excitement while the Goonies cry foul.

Basically, Goon leadership failed to pay the sovereignty bills and thus lost their control over a large swath of territory. Since the sudden loss, many of their enemies have swarmed their beehive, taking systems left and right including key strategical systems. With these losses, it could easily mean the end of yet another Delve empire.

Do I think it's fair? Honestly, I think its a lot more fair in comparison to how BoB was disbanded. A company, even in the real world, can lose their assets if a bill isn't paid. If you know your bills are coming due, which they should have given the spam of evemails you get, it would be in your best interest to make sure enough funds are in the necessary wallet to cover the expense. From what I personally gather, too many of the folks who control this said wallet were "on vacation". True or not, doesn't matter. In the case of BoB, they were disbanded by simple click by one person. In both cases, it sucks that what could seem to be a trivial thing could become the downfall for such massive entities. However, is this yet another case of the butterfly effect?

Let us not overlook as well the loss of sovereignty by Wildly Inappropriate. and Legion of xXDeathXx due to the same failure. Personally, I'm not sure Wildly Inappropriate failed. It could very likely have been intentional since they had pretty much already lost their space to invaders anyways. And whatever they still held, was likely to fall soon enough given their loss of morale. As for Legion's sovereign space, it's the drone regions...thus as far as most of the nullsec alliances are concerned, they can keep it.

Either way, this is certainly another day that will go down in the history books of Eve politics!

Tuesday, January 05, 2010

3 Strikes But Not Out

So as if it isn’t obvious, it’s been quite some time since I sat down and wrote anything. Not for lack of logging pod time but just from a lack of motivation to write. Frankly, there’s been lots to write about, but I’ve just been lazy.

Let’s start with the fact that I’ve been in 0.0 for….what? 4 months now? Maybe 5? Up until this past month, things had been going great. I had yet to even experience the loss of a clone. This past month of December changed all that drastically. In a single month, I’ve been pod killed 3 times. In fact, they probably all happened within a 2 week time period.

The first took place while in a class 5 wormhole I’d found in our home system earlier that day. I had just finished scanning the system for other entrances/exits and decided I was a tad hungry. So I cloaked up (or so I thought) and stepped away from the controls for perhaps no more than 5 minutes. Next I know, my roommate comes walking from the back hallway and mentions he thinks something’s wrong with my computer, that a bunch of beeps and warning sounds are coming from my room. Immediately, I ran back to the room but of course it was too late. By the time I’d gotten back, I found myself already sitting in a station.

So that was loss number one.

The second loss came from what I admit to being a rather dumb move on my part. We’ve had a serious of attacks on our home systems by a group called DarkSide. It’s not hard to notice just how badly they’re beating on us by all the red on our killboards. To they’re credit, they’re very skilled, using great tactics and frankly, when you’re throwing a home defense fleet together fast, you just don’t have the time to organize a well laid out fleet to counter they’re tactics.

In this particular attack, they had moved into one of our choke points and we’re holding their ground. Unfortunately, most of our alliance was a number of jumps away partaking in what was a really great cruiser competition. Lots of good fights from all the participants. I had visited and watched the event from my Arazu recon ship when I heard the news of the attackers. Figuring I’d at least go and get some eyes on them, I made my way over to the adjoining system. When I reached the gate I knew them to be sitting on the other side of, I found a single lone Dramiel floating around the gate. Watching the intel channels, I took note of people claiming our allies, Stain Empire, was engaging the enemy fleet. For a moment, I contemplated what to do and then made the decision that sealed my fate. Figuring their fleet to be busy on the other side and being engaged would not be able to come through any time too soon, I moved to within my optimal range from the Dramiel. I recall there being a few other alliance mates present at the gate but obviously they bailed. Either way, I quickly decloaked and locked my targeting system onto the ship. I’d fired off no more than one salvo when the gate lit up like a Christmas tree. Apparently the intel had been either too delayed or just wrong period given the number of ships that swarmed me. I’d almost had the Dramiel finished off before their logistics repped him back up. After that, it was just a matter of moments before I saw my second death in 0.0 space.

The first and second deaths sucked, but I was at least able to accept with heavy spirit. The third death I will not accept however. As usual, the pathetic empire wankers, Privateers or some crap like that, have a war dec out on us. This is pretty much an ongoing thing. They really are nothing more than a bunch of pathetic Jita 4-4 station campers that continuously war dec nullsec corporations and get their thrills from killing any of the pilots going to pick up or sell goods in the Jita hub. All the while talking smack on CAOD as if they’re some big time nullsec corp when in reality, they’re the only corporation that pretty much all of nullsec alliances laugh at in unison.

Anyways, I’m making it sound like I’m mad at them for what happened but in truth I’m not at all. I come out of warp at the station. I’m a bit farther from the station than I’d hoped but I wasn’t too concerned and immediately put the engines at full and burned towards the station in my cheap little Atron frig. I already expected to lose the ship and wasn’t at all concerned about that. Sure enough the ship takes like two hits and poof. So now I’m in my pod. The genius at the docking control then sends me the notification that my docking request has been accepted and that I am to be towed into station. At this point, I should be immune to the buzzard pukes and though it lags a bit changing screens, I finally am able to breathe a sigh of relief as the image of space clears and the station sounds fill my ears.

“Wait a minute….something’s not right. This isn’t a Caldari hanger,” I think in exclamation. Sure enough, looking up at the station ID I see the big familiar symbol of my corporation, Silver Snake Enterprise! I’m in such disbelief at this point that I could only sit there for a moment in complete shock. Finally senses come back to me and I quickly check my combat logs. Sure enough, the I see the log files for the hits on my ship, and then the Docking request accepted and then…nothing. So I check my loss mails. Yep. There’s the Atron loss but no mail for the pod loss! This just will not do!

So yeah. I sent a petition to CCP about it. First time that I can recall ever submitting a petition. I’ll be curious to know how quick a response time they have. As I said in my petition, I understand and accept the loss of the ship. But not the loss of the pod given I’d received the docking request accepted long before my pod went pop. Long being like 5 seconds but hey, 5 seconds in a pod…in combat…is a REALLY long time. Hopefully they agree with my cry of foul. If I hadn’t received that docking acceptance, than I would be accepting of the pod loss too. (and the somewhat expensive implants I lost in the process)

In retrospect, yes, it wasn’t a very good idea to go to a station where war targets are sure to be at. Honestly, I didn’t even think about just using my alt, something I banged my head a few times over for afterwards. But that still don’t change my stance on the events.

Either way, I seriously have a lot of making up to do for all these stupid losses….and it seems I’ll soon be getting my chance. Actually, a lot of chances. More to come on that later though. J