Tuesday 28 November 2017

That's one ugly ass ship, but it gets the job done

 - "America?" said Mrs Liberty. "Won't we get scalped?"
- "Good grief, no!" said William Stickers, who was a bit more up to date about the world.
- "*Probably* not," said Mr Fletcher, who had been watching the news lately and was even more up to date than William Stickers.
-- Still looking for a good place to party
(Terry Pratchett, Johnny and the Dead)

It's been good, being back in the black, looking for targets and finding a few.
The Gusandall pocket is no where near as busy as it once was, but from time to time a target appears.

One such target was preying on a Thrasher in Eifer, piloted by a very young capsuleer. The Tengu pilot looks to have been around a while, definitely experienced, a quick glance at a screen containing recent confirmed kills indicated he was a small scale operator, a few solo kills of late and seeing as I was already in the black in Gusandall, I made my way over to Eifer to investigate.

Just as I jumped the gate into Eifer, the young Thrasher exploded and I felt I had missed my chance, but as I landed in system I engaged warp to the asteroid belt where the smouldering wreck of the Thrasher was, now a grizzly reminder of what had just happened.

Keira was watching, from a perch above the belt, she noticed the Tengu wasn't aligned to anything in particular and as I landed she raised her concern about what I was about to do.

Too late, I had disengaged the cloak, primed tackle and activated my targeting systems.
Good target lock, tackle glows green and I pulse my microwarp drive to get in range of my guns.
In range, blasters start blasting and the Tengu starts chewing through my shields, not with missiles, as is customary, but it looks like blasters too. Large chunks of my shield are stripped away, I activate my armour rep, the Tengu scrams me and deactivates my MWD, starting to pull a little range, I launch a flight of small ecm drones, which disrupt the Tengu's lock just long enough for me to get it back into my optimal.

It's taking too long to strip the Tengu's shields, I recall the ecm drones and launch some Hobgoblins for a little extra DPS, I overheat my blasters to the brink of melting but finally the shields collapse, and in short order so too do the armour and hull. The Tengu explodes violently, the escape pod warping out a second before target lock resolves, and away from danger.

It's at this point, as the adrenaline is coursing through my veins that Keira brings my attention to the Tengu pilots kill record, showing me that it is know to fly with the locals who have on more than one occasion dropped black ops and other assorted mayhem on me via cyno, had I seen that I would have not even thought about engaging, but fortune favours the brave, and sometimes the foolish.

I'm rather impressed with the Proteus, a few decent kills , it's not often you can pack good DPS, a cloak, combat probes and a solid tank into one package, does it have to be so ugly though?

It's definitely an ugly duckling.

Keira is making up for it, flying something way sexier, as is her way. Let me just say there's something special about being able to warp around at over 15 AU/s

OOC: ...And once again I'm off

While it's been great being back in game, unfortunately I head back to sea on Monday, sailing across the Indian Ocean and away from any sort of decent internet. The past few years have been an amazing experience and while it takes me away from the joys of the modern world like the good internet speeds, it has taken me to the Antarctic twice, around the world several times and I don't regret a thing.

Might be able to play a bit at the end of the year when I will be spending a few weeks in Boston with my partner, but maybe not, who knows :)

Tuesday 21 November 2017

Look who came to visit...

 "You can think and you can fight, but the world's always movin', and if you wanna stay ahead you gotta dance."
-- (Terry Pratchett, The Amazing Maurice and his Educated Rodents)

An old friend came by Gusandall.
She didn't bring with it the frenetic frigate combat she was famous for.
She didn't bring bling fit frigates to harvest for their tears
She didn't bring back life to this now empty corner of the universe.

She did bring back some great memories!

Thursday 16 November 2017

A Thief in the Night

"You won't get away with this," said Cutwell. He thought for a bit and added, "Well, you will probably get away with it, but you'll feel bad about it on your deathbed and you'll wish -- " He stopped talking.
-- Cutwell tries to reason with the Duke of Sto Helit
(Terry Pratchett, Mort)

The Hangar is cold and dark, the low hum of slumbering giants a white noise to block out all sound, an eerie stillness to the air, almost suffocating.

It's been a long time, a layer of dust obscures the console, I wipe the dust away and check the hangar systems and inventory "Yep, all as I left it" I think to myself, but something is not quite right, someone has been here. As power is restored to the hangar, the lights high in the vaulted ceiling start to flicker to life, slowly illuminating the caverous hangar.

As light slowly pushes back the dark I see tracks in the dust, someone has definitely been here. I follow the tracks, towards my old Rifter, The Cunning Man has been the ship that defined me and to a large part I defined the Rifter, back in the day, when frigate Piracy was a vibrant and wonderful thing.

I board the vessel and immediately see someone has been messing with the systems, modifications have been made, and I don't like what I see. There's a note on the fitting console, it reads:

"I made some changes, took away the utility high cause let's be honest, who needs a utility high, and I made adjustments to the lows, you can now fit an extra low.
You're welcome

I don't know whether to scream or track down this Fozzie and strangle him with his own tongue, or both at the same time. I know I haven't been around for a while, but don't touch my stuff.

The utility high was the only thing that gave the Rifter parity with other frigates after they were boosted to not only match the Rifter but to superscede it as the premier tech 1 frigate.

When the Rifter was good, it was oh so good, able to catch and brawl Interceptors and Assault Frigates in the 2/10 of Gusandall, to hunt down cruisers and battlecruisers in the belts of Eifer and generally punch above its weight in the right hands in all sorts of situations. The Rifter was Godly if piloted well, but it was never really that overpowered that it deserved this.

Maybe this Fozzie was indecently assaulted by a Rifter when he was a young Capsuleer, or maybe he's forgotten what it's like to be a Capsuleer. I suppose we will never know.