Tuesday, 20 January 2015

Hunting Rook

Combat Recon's are the Ship of the Week at the moment. At least I think they are, I've seen lots of them on station undocks but for some reason my d-scan is always clear of them... The Combat Recon's are great and especially so in wormholes where Local is empty and d-scan is King. 

I've always liked the Rook and whilst it has its detractors it is a solid ship that perhaps has an edge over some of the others so lets see if we can come up with a fit that could be used to kill site runners in C1 and C2 wormholes.

The Ship

The Rook is Caldari by origin so it will be shield fit, armour is just not viable with only three low slots. Seven mid slots gives us a nice option for tank/ewar and the five highs mean we can get some decent dps (which will be supplemented by a full flight of drones).

The ship had a graphical make over in the Rhea expansion and now really looks good (pretty even) but not only does it look good it now has teeth thanks to the changes to its characteristics:
Caldari Cruiser bonuses (per skill level):
7.5% bonus to kinetic Light Missile, Heavy Missile and Heavy Assault Missile damage
10% reduction in ECM Target Jammer activation cost 
Recon Ships bonus (per skill level):
30% bonus to ECM Target Jammer strength
10% bonus to Heavy Missile and Heavy Assault Missile velocity 
Role Bonus
Cannot be detected by directional scanners
The Role Bonus cannot be understated as this will allow us to sneak up on site runners before we prevent their escape and then use one of the listed missile types to turn them into a wreck.

With decent Tech 2 shield resistances (before modules/skills) of 0%/50%/62.5%/70% (EM/THE/KIN/EXP) the only worry is that EM hole but we can plug that either with a specific Field or rig.

Our Target

The purpose of this fit is to kill site ratters in C1 and C2 wormholes. Typically these will be cruiser/battle-cruiser class with the possibility of a battleship in the C2. 

Drone based ships are common for wormhole site runners so we'll assume that often than not we will be facing a drone ship. That means facing thermal/kinetic damage, which the Rook has strong resists too by default. Score!

Contrary to logic, these guys may help kill your target.
The Rook has a ship bonus to ECM so we really should bring at least one ECM module as it'll be effective against not just other ships but their drones too.


Here is our first fitting for the Rook:
[Rook, Solo WH Hunter]
Damage Control II
Ballistic Control System II
Ballistic Control System II
Experimental 10MN Microwarpdrive I
Large Ancillary Shield Booster, Navy Cap Booster 150
Large Ancillary Shield Booster, Navy Cap Booster 150
Adaptive Invulnerability Field II
Warp Scrambler II
ECM - Multispectral Jammer II
ECM - Multispectral Jammer II 
Rapid Light Missile Launcher II, Scourge Fury Light Missile
Rapid Light Missile Launcher II, Scourge Fury Light Missile
Rapid Light Missile Launcher II, Scourge Fury Light Missile
Rapid Light Missile Launcher II, Scourge Fury Light Missile
Rapid Light Missile Launcher II, Scourge Fury Light Missile 
Medium Anti-EM Screen Reinforcer II
Medium Particle Dispersion Augmentor II 
Hobgoblin II x5
The Rapid Light Missiles and Drones give you around 475 dps, more than enough to kill most ships (and remember you'll most likely be getting help from any Sleepers that are still alive).  The Warp Scrambler is there to prevent ships escaping via MWD or a MJD.

Tank is great, you have overheated tank of around 465 meaning that even if sleepers join in the tackle ship and shoot you, you'll be able to tank them and continue killing your target.


This ship is designed for a singular purpose, that of killing site runners in low class WH's (C1/C2). Your targets should be battle-cruiser and smaller ships (ideally ones that use drones as their primary weapon), on paper you could take on a battleship but I would not recommend it.

The short range of the Warp Scrambler is going to dicate how you fight, you're orbit close at between 5000 and 7500 metres using your ECM to either jam the target or their drones (Sleepers too if they shift fire to you). The RLML will do serious damage but have a long reload time so you must make sure you deploy your drones to keep the target under pressure.

You will take damage but by pulsing one shield boosters when you hit 75% shields (and swapping to the other if you run out of charges) you will be able to absorb significant punishment and, ideally, be the last ship standing.

Monday, 19 January 2015

Sneaky Bastard

I bought a Lachesis last week, just after Proteus was deployed, and I fitted it out according to feedback and what I thought was the best fit. Subsequently a discussion on the Sudden Buggery facebook page corrected my fitting and I realised what a piece of turd it was. I was 75% correct in but the remaining 25% that I came up with was about as useful as a chocolate teapot.

I will be refitting, as soon as I can get to high sec to inject a new skillbook (to use Medium Tech II Rails) and get some replacement modules. Until then I am in my "fit" Lachesis.

Setting the Scene

So on Friday evening I found myself logged in and listening on Comms. I saw that someone was at the Altar of Bob performing a sacrifice of a corpse (or two) and then a new name spoke in local. It appears we had a visitor and one that was stuck in our wormhole.

Succlebutt was that he was in a Crow and had been here for a couple of days as he had gotten stuck without a probe launcher or a bookmark to get back out. He had offered ISK for someone to help him, either with a probe launcher or a bookmark out.

Strangely no-one had taken him up on his offer.

White Knight

I'm a friendly type, so I'll help him. So I warped to the sun and dropped a can, containing exit bookmarks, letting him know in local that I had done so. 

I remained on grid in my Lachesis as he would not see that on d-scan and a few seconds later I saw a crow appear 100km from my position. He cloaked and I remained still then asked in Local if he was still there and seeing my ship.

He confirmed he was and uncloaked, I then said that I would logout so he knew I was not trying to deceive him. I then logged out.

Of course it is.

From the Wings

Whilst this is all going on I'm also speaking to corp mate Miskoranda who is in a cloaky smartbombing Proteus fit that has been named the Dick Virus. This is a superb ship for killing explorers or lightly tanked vessels and it was the perfect choice for this kill.

Miskoranda moved the cloaky within 10km of the can I had dropped and waited, before I logged I comfirmed he was in position and ready. He was, I logged.

It only took a few seconds after my screen closed before this:

Sometimes I shake my own head at how sneaky I can be, pretending to be a friend and saviour to someone and then letting this happen. Then that microsecond passes and I'm fine again.

This is what you get when you invade my home. Yarrrr!

A Reader Writes

I occasionally get people who know I write this blog send me messages in-game and others are kind enough to post comments on what I write. I had a massive shock yesterday when I received an evemail from someone whom I've never heard from before AND they provided feedback.


An actual REAL human being sent me an evemail about my blog and provided both constructive and useful feedback. This was proof that I had real reader who was NOT a bot or a friend pretending to read my writing,

I was so shocked that I had to go have a lie down and that turned into a rather nice nap and well, there went my working day so I went home and played EVE Online. It was a good Thursday overall.

Cynos Suck

The feedback from a fine gentlemen named Edward Olmops focused on my recent complaint about Cynos:
You actually CAN use a cyno when you join a fleet and the cyno is already active. The cyno pilot has to right-click the cyno field and choose "broadcast" or "advertise" or something the like. The cyno will then show up in the broadcast history and anyone in the fleet can right-click the entry in the broadcast history and jump (ensure broadcast settings are correct).
It took me a moment to consider this but in theory this is correct and next time I do a run to high sec I will be giving this a try. It works because by broadcasting the cyno it will make it actionable (because its saved in the fleet window) by anyone in or who joins the fleet subsequently.

He finished with this comment
Typically EVE-like, unintuitive, complicated and mostly unknown feature...
Well said Edward, well said. It is all that you said and as a result unknown to the masses when really it should be something known outside of the few. Thanks for the comment and helping to publicise this unknown feature.

An alternative to the Jump Freighter

Edward finished his mail with a very interesting idea and one that he uses. Since the Rhea nerf to JF range he's started using Deep Space Transports to move cargo via wormholes where he lives. He said that with a little scanning (between 5 to 10 systems to find a HS link) a connection can be found and then using DST's to move goods between his location and the connected high sec.

Of course you are vulnerable to interception using the WH route but it is fairly safe and even a small escort would be enough to put off the opportunist attacker. As Edward goes on to say about using WH's:
No range limit, no cyno chars needed. Living in Stain now for 3 months, we disavowed using JFs and logistics have never been easier (not even when living in Curse and it was just 1 jump).
This is certainly something to consider and I will look into this more as I'm aware of three WH's in the past week that linked my home system to somewhere else (I never checked them) so its obvious that we do get them.

Most of the time I jump out fully loaded (~350,000m3) so using DST will be a bit of work but there are times when I need to move smaller amounts that would fit in a DST so this is something I shall now have to consider and it would be much cheaper.

Thanks Edward Olmops for the feedback and for reading. 

Wednesday, 14 January 2015

Woot.... Urm... Yay for Me!

I can recall a couple of years ago reading a blog (a pirate/ninja salvager from memory but the name escapes) who showed a screenshot of his pilot finishing all of the skills to V in the navigation tree. 

It's a great achievement to complete all skills to V in a tree, some are going to take a very long time (and a lot of ISK) whereas others don't need completion to V (i.e. they only lower capacitor usage). 

One of those trees that does deserve the effort is Navigation and it is with great pleasure I awoke this morning to see High Speed Maneauving V completed on my null sec pilot:

There is one skill missing but I don't use Micro Jump Drives (at this time) so as far as I'm concerned the tree is complete. The Jump skills were the longest and most painful but, consequently, the most rewarding to complete.

The character moves on to Int/Mem skills before finally starting on Gunnery, 4 years overdue I'd say. All he has is Gunnery III in that branch but when he's finished it's going to be Level V's all over the place!

[ShipType], [ShipType] Combat Recons Everywhere!

Please feel free to substitute your preferred Combat Recon in place of [ShipType].

Trinkets Friend, he of Dick Virus and Localectomy blog fame, posted about the changes to Combat Recons coming in the next EVE online expansion Proteus. It's well worth the read and implies that Combat Recon's will become a very common ship in wormhole space due to their d-scan invisibility.

I've been watching the thread in the Features & Ideas forum with interest and despite a lot of complains the changes to d-scan made it into the final release. 

The timing could not be any better for my wormhole alt (who, I should point out, recently joined Trinkets Friend's corp) as he finished Medium Blaster Turret V over the weekend and is currently working on the specialisation skill to IV before getting Recon Ships V.

I've already bought a couple of Lachesis's in Jita that I have fit for wormhole operation and I'm especially happy at the migration of one of the high slots to a low slot as I can find a much better use for a low slot than a non-turret high slot.

I'll be doing a post in a few days on my Lachesis fit, its still evolving and I'm yet to get feedback from a couple of fitting gurus whom I want to so I can finally resolve the issue of dual or triple LSE's in the mids.

But regardless, I'm looking forward to operating Combat Recons in wormhole space and finally getting kills...

Monday, 12 January 2015

Cyno Things

I'm a regular user of cynosural fields to move ships and goods from high sec to low sec and vice versa. Cyno's are a pain sometimes and, since Rhea, the extended nature of the chain I need to use makes things very frustrating when I only have so many accounts.

Ready to Jump

One of my biggest annoyances is that if you join a fleet, that has an active cyno, you cannot use it..The Jump To menu remains empty of the cyno that you want to use.

I had this last night, if I'd been able to join a fleet that had an active cyno and use it I would have saved so much time instead I had to wait for my cyno's to finish each time and then I could light a new one for the newly joined fleet character.

What should have taken 20 minutes, maximum, ended up taking me just over an hour to move several capital ships and cargo 14 light years.

It Must Be Stacked

If you have a cyno-alt you should have encountered, at least once, the issue where your Liquid Ozone must be stacked as one. You cannot have the fuel in two or more stacks in the cargo bay. If you do then you are told that there is not enough fuel to light the cyno even though the required amount is present.

This catches me out quite often and I'm starting to load fuel into my cyno ships and using Stack All before I undock.

It's a small thing but its bloody frustrating.

And Another Thing

And fuck you to those low sec pilots who love to shoot unarmed and harmless cyno characters. Keep padding your killboards guys because your killboard statistics are vitally important to feel good due to your small penises.

Thursday, 8 January 2015

Less Engaged

I was reading my usual daily list and a post by the EVE Hermit got me thinking about the change to the skill queues in Rhea. Previously you could have only 24 hours of skills queued at anyone time, longer skills would occupy the space but you could not add new skills until there was less than 24 hours left on the currently training skill.

This change was universally praised and one that players have requested frequently. Personally I've loved the ability to queue months of training and not have to worry about times when I'm away or holidays causing my skill queue to go empty.

If I Didn't See It

Overall I think the longer skill queue is a positive change – but it might have made us a little less engaged with our characters. - EVE Hermit 
I fully agree.

I used to monitor EVE Mon a few times throughout my working day so I knew how long it would take me to complete a skill, waiting for it to dip under 24 hours of training remaining so I could add the next skill. 

Now that I've got skills queued (based on each individual skill plan I've developed) unless they have 50 skills queued I don't do anything.

My 'PvP alt' finished Gallente Dreadnought V last weekend. This is a skill that I should have been celebrating completion of but instead I didn't notice until Monday, over 18 hours after it finished, when I saw the EVE Mon notification.

My 'main' had over 120 days of Drone training and I've watched a lot of that tick down and complete in EVE Mon but I haven't got as excited as I used to be about completing Level V skills. I haven't been logged in when they complete or have I needed to update my skills.

The only exception has been the tweaking of the skill queue on my 'wormhole alt' almost daily, adding or removing a skill because I missed or no longer need it. Aside from that I don't think any of my characters have had their skill queues opened since Rhea was released.

Wednesday, 7 January 2015


Previously I detailed a POCO bash that under way in wormhole space, we'd picked up two easy kills and were bashing away at the remaining POCOs when on d-scan appeared a Sabre.

The Passive Scanning Fallacy

D-Scan provides a passive sense of security and a somewhat false sense of security as Covert Ops Cloaked equipped ships won't appear (and Combat Recon's in a patch or two will not either). But clicking d-scan will at least provide SOME form of early warning of approaching ships, especially tackle. If you live in a wormhole you very quickly learn that d-scan is something you need open and running. 

I'm safe if nothing appears here, right?
The fleet was continuing to shoot the remaining POCO and a few were using d-scan to monitor for incoming threats. We'd posted a cloaked scout to the other wormhole we knew of in system, to a C3, and expected any threat from BRAVE Newbies to come from this vector.

We were right that it would be Brave Newbies as the threat but the threat vector we didn't.


Instead of coming back through the C3 as we had expected the fleet that Brave Newbies assembled instead came via the high sec we had used. The same high sec that we did not have any eyes on as we (wrongly) believed to be safe.

I don't know why we didn't have eyes on the high sec connection but it probably was as simple as we didn't have enough characters to cover this hole.

When I saw a Sabre on d-scan I called out on Teamspeak.

"Sabre on scan"

No reaction.

"Sabre on scan"

Again no reaction.

"SABRE ON SCAN" (said with a little more volume and urgency).

At this point I heard someone else call it too (it was Bex I found out afterwards) and people then started to respond and react. Unfortunately the reaction was slow and ships only pulled drones and aligned to a celestial as the Sabre appeared on grid.

Don't Panic

The interdiction probe bubble covered me and I quickly looked for the closest edge that I could burn too before trying to warp out. I engaged my microwarpdrive and double clicked in space to the edge I was going for.

More targets appeared on grid and I locked up both the Sabre and a Crow that was within range and opened fire. The Sabre exploded before he could get out of his own bubble (he also lost his pod)whilst the Crow took a couple of hits but was well off the bubble but fortunately Scorch L didn't let him escape.

By this time I'd seen an Absolution appear on grid with a couple of other cruiser/battlecruiser class vessels so I locked no further targets and made a run for the high sec hole myself. This was a risk as it could be bubbled but I felt confident that they would not leave any bubblers on the hs hole as they had successfully caught our fleet at the POCO.

I made it and jumped successful back to the (relative) protection of high sec.

What About The Fleet

I'm quite proud of how I reacted, finally the training and guidance I'd been given over the years in-game had paid off. There was no panic, no newbie mistakes. I killed and successfully extracted. I do feel bad that I'd left my friends to die but we were all in no-tank ships and we would never survive this engagement so running was the only option.
The aftermath of the ambush was not as bad as I or others thought, four T3 battlecruisers were lost with another one being lost less than an hour later to the same gang in system. But it was far from being a rout.

Fitting 101

I'm not a fitting expert, I regularly ask for assistance with fits but experience and lots of yelling has taught me a lot about the basics that I remember to this day. This is my personal opinion.
The one thing that made me cringe and shake my head was a couple of our losses saying they didn't have a prop mod fitted. Always having a prop mod fitted is one of the rules that has been drilled into me since I was in Providence, afterburners are okay but ideally a microwarpdrive should be fitted to give you the GTFO capability should you be caught in a bubble. And here is an example of why, these two pilots were not able to burn out quickly and as a result were primary targets for the landing force.

We killed the Sabre (including pod) and the Crow and managed to bag a combat fit Kryos within the hour for five battlecruisers. 

The ISK war may have been lost but we had fun.

I certainly did, got my first kill in 177 days on my character and managed not to screw things up (noone has said I did so I'm taking that as a positive).

Tuesday, 6 January 2015

Caught by the Rozzers

For those unaware of the meaning, Rozzers is a slang term to describe the police. Its has a comical nature to it.

It was a quiet day

I was moving goods from Amarr to my home base, nothing major just the culmination of buy orders from the last few weeks as well as random odds and sods I'd accumulated.

I jumped from Amarr into Ashab when I got a notification:

and a popup box appeared telling me that I had to choose Yes or No and it was possible my ship would be destroyed. Being in a freighter I did not want this to happen so I read the box and decided that something I was carrying was at fault and I should allow confiscation.

I clicked Yes, received a wallet flashing indicator and a new notification:

Standard Exile Boosters were the cause. I don't remember them being in my hanger but they were and I have been caught.

It's a Fair Cop


A 327, 680 ISK fine and confiscation of the goods. It could have been worse and I could have lost a 1.4 billion ISK ship. I should have checked the cargo before I loaded it and I do remember a popup about "contraband" but I auto-piloted through that and click Yes to.

I think I'm going to have to have words with Scotty...

Monday, 5 January 2015


A couple of days ago I had a evemail appear in my inbox from Bex. Mails from Bex usually are a request to come shoot some stuff and this was no different, there were POCOs in a WH system ripe for killing. He was hoping to stir the locals into action after he had evicted them in September.

A high sec system wasn't too far from my home system and I had little else to do so I visited Amarr and fit out a high dps Oracle to use.

Fit For Use

I spent 150m in total on the following fit and the ammo and nanite paste and left Amarr wit the following fit ship:

Mega Pulse Laser II, Conflagration L
Mega Pulse Laser II, Conflagration L
Mega Pulse Laser II, Conflagration L
Mega Pulse Laser II, Conflagration L
Mega Pulse Laser II, Conflagration L
Mega Pulse Laser II, Conflagration L
Mega Pulse Laser II, Conflagration L
Mega Pulse Laser II, Conflagration L

Experimental 10MN Microwarpdrive I
Tracking Computer II, Optimal Range Script
Cap Recharger II

Damage Control II
Tracking Enhancer II
Heat Sink II
Heat Sink II
Heat Sink II
Heat Sink II

Medium Energy Locus Coordinator I
Medium Energy Locus Coordinator I
Medium Energy Burst Aerator I

With Conflag it provided 1100 dps, 750 with Scorch and 1000 with faction Multifrequency. It has no tank so at any sign of danger I need to be aligned and ready to warp off but it had one purpose, to be a fit I could use for maximum damage to shoot static emplacements.


The fleet formed up in the staging system that Bex provided and sat on the wormhole until all fleet members were assembled. Unfortunately on the wormhole with us was a shuttle belonging to a member of Brave Newbies who jumped in with us. He was fast enough to escape off and left via another wormhole in the system. We posted a cloaky ship to this to warn us of any possible attackers coming from this direction.

Bad Luck

We warped to the first POCO and opened fire... but a minute or so after we started started we were mildly surprised to see a Cheetah deloak at 0 on the POCO. Never one to turn down free stuff, the Cheetah was instantly vaporised.

We couldn't believe this, the whole system and the Cheetah appeared here. Turns out the pilot had warped at 100km to a POCO so he could scan but had ended up at 0 on our fleet location.

If At First...

We continued with the POCO shooting and 11 minutes after we first killed him the Cheetah pilot uncloaked again at 0 on the POCO we were shooting but this time in a Stealth Bomber. Again he was dispatched amidst a rainbow coloured light show.

He didn't even try to attack us so we weren't even sure why he returned, possible to loot his own wreck but we'll never know as just after his ship was killed we finished RF'ing the POCO and moved on to the next.

Back to Mission

With a fleet mix of different high dps ships, such as Talos, Oracles and a Harbinger, the POCOs were took about 15 minutes to enter reinforced mode. 

We kept ourselves entertained with humourous chat and jokes and we finished three POCOS in quick order. We then warped to our fourth target for the night and settled in, it wasn't long afterwards that a Sabre appeared on scan and we found out Brave Newbies assembled a fleet to come jump us...

Saturday, 3 January 2015

Welcome to the New Year

Happy New Year to my reader.. er... readers. I hope you've had a lovely Christmas/New Year and are looking forward to 2015.

I was unlucky enough to be forced by my wife to travel to relatives and so my EVE Online time was very limited. The forced break was restful but by the need of my time away I was bored and in need to addressing a few minor production issues.

Still a break is a break.

I have had a nice start to 2015, my 'main' got two kills on a POCO bash (his first kill for over 177 days) and managed to profit well from the release of the Bowhead with pre-release investments turning a nice profit of over 4 billion ISK.