So I was up early this morning and after a hearty bowl of stupidly cheerful cereal, I decided to login to EVE online. I had an hour to kill before work demanded my attention and at that god awful time in the morning I could think of no better way to whittle an hour away.
Now lets set the scene. I am a pirate.
Not a weird kiddy pirate (dodgy as hell), nor an awkwardly handsome Disney pirate. I’m the soulless evil pirate that drinks on the tears of his victims like it was a fine wine.
I brought my pirating pilots out to play with the aim of camping a gate, hoping that I could capture some lonesome pilot as he meandered through my space. I then spent the next few minutes constructing my web. My pirates warped to their usual pounce point in low security space. (A relatively safe location a few thousand kilometres from the gate). My alt pilot in the system next door remains cloaked near the gate.
With my pirates aligned to the gate and ready to pounce at a moment’s notice, my cloaked alt on the other side began scanning for targets. This is a very simple process, something that I can easily do while browsing the net, watching TV or chatting to corporation mates over vent and of course reading what Tom has recently posted. It doesn’t take long before my alts scan reveals a Thorax cruiser. Through simple game mechanics I know this pilot in his cruiser is coming into my carefully constructed web. A smile spreads across my face, the spider is happy indeed.
The cruiser (pictured) wastes no time. He jumps from secure space directly into low security space without a moment’s hesitation. He is greeted on the opposite side by a yell of “YARR!” in local chat. This leaves him under no delusions about what is going to happen. I disable his ships ability to escape and quickly devour it. His ship explodes leaving behind a select few useful items that I quickly gather before returning to my pounce point safely away from the gate. I’ am a hungry spider, the least pull on my web sends me out to feed.
I continue scanning while chatting to members of our corporation. All is quiet, disappointingly so but twenty minutes before I have to logoff my alt informs me of a hauler approaching my net. These haulers are typically used to move large quantities of goods around. Any self-respecting pirate will salivate at the prospect of exposing a haulers innards to the cruel vacuum of space. I am no different.
The hauler in question decides that he does not need a scout or any other defences to see him past our blockade. He jumps through and into my web. He sounds genuinely surprised to find me there but not as surprised to find his ship melting around him. I can almost hear his little cry of “eep” as I feast. What was his last thought? Regret, anger, frustration. This doesn’t concern me I am only happy that he came and that I could teach him the value of scouts.
The killmail we receive from the hauler kill happily informs us that he has dropped a large amount of minerals. More than enough to have us swarm greedily over the wreckage. Pay Day!
A simple “Yarr, yur loot be ours!” was given to the hapless hauler pilot as he fled in his escape pod. Our own hauler alts were quickly sent to scoop that loot. The bounty was gratefully received and will be put to good use, of that I can promise.
While I am gathering all the minerals my eyes on the other side of the gate spot our cruiser pilot returning. Only this time he is flying a Battleship. It’s not just a run of the mill battleship it’s a Navy Issue. A much rarer, much more expensive, much deadlier version than its basic counterpart. My eyes grow wide. My initial reaction is one of caution as a Navy Issue Megathron is not a target that is to be taken lightly. The spider stays in the safety of his pounce point.
However I have found that greed and the glory of a kill against such a ship is a strong motivator. I inform my corporation friends that there is “At this very moment a Navy Issue Megathron parked on the other side of my camp!” Extra help was needed. In that instant I brushed aside my usual cautious nature and focused on the promised feast. It seems my corporation mates are of a similar mind-set. No sooner had the words been spoken they declared that they were on route.
Well two of them… One really… The other was flying something as deadly as a segway. Pretty for sure, but you look like a cock riding it.
Still this was a good morning I thought congratulating myself on the kill not yet delivered. The risks are very high but I decide the rewards are greater. With my corp mates joining me the odds are now in our favour. I would be lying if I said I liked it any other way. I would not fly with anyone who proclaimed the opposite. However these stacked odds were short lived when my alts scans revealed a second ship joining the Navy Issue Megathron on the gate.
My gut flipped and my cautious nature spoke out. “Work in 5 minutes. Call it off! Logoff while you are ahead!” At any other time or day over my long history with EVE I would have listened. I would have told our guys to back off and retreated to fight another day. However this morning something was different. Was it my greed? The promise of glory? I didn’t want to disappoint my corp mates, but that has never stopped me being the voice of reason and restraint in the past. For whatever reason I clicked on Vent “Fuck it, lets get them!” “Sparta!” shouted the Segway pilot.
We landed on the gate just as the Navy Issue Megathron jumps. We disable his warp and engines to stop him re-approaching the gate. I send out a flight of ECM drones hoping to disrupt his attacks long enough to hinder him. We are all committed to the fight now. The Navy Issue has to win he has no chance of escape the odds it seems are still on our side. Then one corp mate declares he has to leave the fight. With his ship deep into structure he manages to break away from the chaos. Its only now that the full brunt of the battleships firepower hits my ship and all delusions of victory are swept aside. My shields vanish in an instant. My hardened armour holds up for longer but as I watch the violence around me I know I am delaying the inevitable. With the Navy Issue into half armour and going nowhere fast we decide to cause as much harm as possible and switch targets to the much softer battlecruiser that accompanied him. We hoped that it would allow us to escape at the very least have them limp home with more than a scratch to remind them of the fight.
However it was too little too late. The sheer monstrous nature of the Navy Issue Megathron overwhelmed us and with it having backup turned the fight into a suicidal attack. The greedy spider met a sticky end.
Before I logged off and ran out the door to work. The pilot who taught me to heed my cautious nature left in local chat a simple >: )
I can only applaud his audacity, while at the same time I will strive to remove that shiny ship from his possession. Tonight the spider will return to weave its web. A little wiser, and much more unforgiving than before.
Carebears of EVE you have been warned!
And for the love of god use a scout!