Wednesday, October 13, 2010

War Diary - 2010.10.08 0116

[Posting delayed for security purposes.]

EVE University is at war.

Before war was declared, our squadron was deployed to the far reaches of empire space for a little bit of small-gang activity. Fun and games in small numbers.

When the wardec came, command decided to keep us out here. We continue to patrol, but we have not encountered war targets. If they came our way in force, they could crush our small fleet. That probably won't happen because they don't know we're out here, and since they don't know our names, they probably won't do a locate search on any of us. Just to be safe, I'm delaying publication of this blog entry until after the war, or maybe until after we leave.

Small gang operations are a new experience for me. Up until now, most of my PvP has been in Uni fleets, which are fairly safe in empire space. The typical Uni blob is so huge that the biggest problem is finding enemies that don't run when local spikes. However, I've been spending some time solo ratting in losec recently, and there have been some nasty surprises. My ratting fit is not really suitable for PvP, so my plan is usually to run or hide. I haven't always been successful.

I'm learning a few things. First of all, I don't have much in the way of ships, fittings, or skills for cruiser-level PvP. Other than some Gallente frigate fits, most of my PvP skills are oriented around Drake fighting. The only Cruiser I fly regularly is the Navy Caracal I use for running low-level missions really fast. I can fit a Caracal for PvP in theory, and that's what I've had to do, but it's not really in the same league as a bare-knuckle brawler like a Thorax.

Second, I'm really learning to appreciate the directional scanner. In Uni blobs, the FC and scouts are responsible for intelligence on the enemy. There's little I could learn that they don't already know. But out in a small gang, it pays to know who's nearby.

Third, this is a lot more fun. In a Uni blob, I'm just along because the ships don't fly themselves. It's a lot like being a gun operator on a surface navy vessel--I just shoot when command tells me to. Here, I'm liable to have some decisions to make.

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