Friday, September 19, 2008

Ooh, a shiny battlecruiser!

Due to the focus on missions since my last post, I've been training some mission-related skills. After almost losing 2 tanked Vexor cruisers on the first stage of a 3-stage Recon mission, I decided that it was a mission requiring a bigger tank than what I could have on the cruiser. When the pirate rats take your tanked cruiser into structure before you've even gotten halfway to the acceleration gate, then you need to change ships.

Advice on the pilot message boards said to use a shuttle. I did - it got destroyed before it even travelled a single km.

So battlecruiser it was....

After training up, I went to the shipyard. Oooh, look at that - a Myrmidon! Damn that's a hot looking ship. Here's my card, transfer it to my hangar - thank you!

I fit it as a tank, and it sure did work a treat. Those damn pirate rats got it down to 2% armour, but I reached that acceleration gate and moved on to the next stage of the Recon mission.

A bit annoying I had to spend a 40m on the ship and fittings to complete a mission that made me only 250k.... but that's ok. It's an investment into my future. With a battlecruiser at my disposal, it'll last me for quite a few missions.

The Myrmidon has definitely been a good investment. It has drone and armour repairing bonuses, and considering I'm pretty much a drone specialist, it works really well. There have been very few missions at this stage (apart from Recon) that have actually gotten through the shields before my Hammerhead II drones rip them all apart.

It's funny... I still can't avoid seeking to fight other pilots. I think it's in my blood, even if I am a dismal failure at it.

After refitting it for real combat against other pilots, I've taken it on patrols through a few lowsec systems, looking for someone to fight. But strangely enough, where they've been out hunting me in my cruisers and frigates, they don't seem to want to deal with the battlecruiser...

In the same time that I would have lost 3 cruisers, I couldn't find anyone while in my battlecruiser.

I'm not sure if that's a good thing or a bad thing.

So anyway, it's nice to be on a path to making decent money. My agents recently upgraded from a low quality level II, to a high quality level II. I'm looking forward to moving on to level III missions soon. Once that happens I'll start training up for a battleship, so I can take on those level IV missions. Bring on the money!

To help with that, I've ventured into salvaging. My ship is fitted with a single railgun to gather agro where necessary, and has a drone link augmentor to extend my drone range, and the rest of the turret slots are fitted with tractor beams and salvagers. It was pretty frustrating crawling around to all the wrecks to loot them, but now I can pull them to me AND salvage them! Much faster, and lots more money to be made. I... like it!

I want a Force Recon ship. That's my long term goal right now. If anyone has any suggestions on which one I should be going for, please tell me now, so that I can start training appropriately.

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

The measure of insanity

I had some losses - big losses, like 130 million worth of losses over a period of a week - and decided that I really needed to re-evaluate what I was doing. I had no illusions that I was the victim of bad luck or cheating scumbags. My own lack of skill and experience was directly responsible for those losses.

It was an ancient Earth scientist who had some kind of quote I've never forgotten - 'The measure of insanity is doing the same thing over and over but expecting different results each time.'

I'm not insane, so therefore I had to stop repeatedly doing the same thing! If what you're doing doesn't work, then just stop doing it.

So I've stopped looking for ships to attack, for opportunities to engage in acts of combat against other pilots. It's just not working for me.

Instead, I've taken to cleaning up my corp and focusing on regaining that 130 million ISK, plus more. I jumped in an Iteron V, loaded it up with Cargo Expander II's and Giant Cargo Cans (giving me about 32,000m3 of hauling capacity) and proceeded to jump around the galaxy picking up all the assets I had laying around, and bringing them back to HQ.

Speaking of HQ, I moved it. It's no longer in lowsec space, and is back in highsec. The main reason for this is because the corp is full of people that aren't very skilled in lowsec combat, and it's 'safer' in highsec space. This is important as I intend recruiting new pilots and slowly teaching them the ways of Eve - eventually including combat.

My plan is simple. Focus on missions, and raise some money. I think this is because I've been burnt really badly by how much I've lost recently. I need to get that back, and create a significant buffer for future such occasions, should they occur again.

At the same time as I focus on raising money, I'll also be working on building up my combat skills, but not alone. No longer solo. It's just too dangerous for someone that's not completely sure what they're doing.

Instead, the corp (under my direction) is investing in Rifters. Lots of Rifters. Dozens of them. And cheap T1 modules to fit on them. The corp will buy them, fit them, insure them, and replace them.

Scorpion's Sting is going to eventually become a corp focusing on hunter-killer packs, with gangs of Rifter pilots roaming lowsec looking for prey. When we have some decent experience in gang combat against other pilots, I'll consider moving into 0.0 space. Old friends offer opportunities for support that I might eventually take them up on.

But those days are far away. I have only 2 other members right now, both friends of mine, and one of them is brand new as of a week or so ago. I found out he was gate camped last night and podkilled... his first experience at it! I think he needs some new trousers now...

As I rebuild this corp, I'll be looking at getting some skilled combat pilots to focus on training and lowsec patrols. I'll also be getting some miners and manufacturers so we can become self-sufficient with our manufacturing needs.

If you know someone who might be interested in joining a corp and working to build it from the ground up, have them get in touch with me. We'll have much to discuss.