The Battle for the D-W iHub


Art by Redline XIII

World War Bee continues, with fighting increasing greatly in the new year period. The record breaking landmark defense of M2 has thrown PAPI reeling into chaos of late. This situation is something that the Imperium has capitalized upon.

iHub Mechanics

There has already been a great deal spoken about the use of iHubs and the importance they play. An iHub is a structure that is placed into space that allows certain system-wide upgrades and features. One of these mechanics is a system-wide cyno jammer. This prevents your enemy from being able to jump in capital class ships into a system where you control the iHub and cyno jammer. An iHub must be controlled for 35 consecutive days in order to be able to place the cyno jammer. So far in Delve, PAPI has been reticent to invade a system without having iHub control. In the first battle of M2, for example, which was almost dead even, they had such iHub control and therefore placed a cyno jammer. 

This tactic of waiting 35 days has been a mainstay of the PAPI invasion forces. It is the method by which they had hoped to always encounter the Imperium capital forces on more favorable terms. They do not want to face Imperium forces, dug in and tethered, with equal numbers or without iHub control. 

The Imperium Counter-Attacks

Since the catastrophic error by PAPI, of not logging back on after downtime for the amor timer of the Keepstar in the system of M2-X, the Imperium has been active. With a substantial amount of PAPI forces “pre-staged” (read that as “trapped and unable to log in”), PAPI have been less inclined to use their capital forces. This has allowed the Imperium to make progress in resetting the 35 day timers that PAPI are so heavily reliant on.

Midweek saw PAPI member TAPI watch an entire constellation of iHub timers reset by the Imperium. The constellation of NJU-QV saw fierce fighting for many hours. But ultimately the Imperium overcame the disadvantages and met their objectives.

Having had such success, the Imperium has pressed forward even further. The system of D-W is an important one, but not for strategic reasons in particular. Rather, the Keepstar in D-W was the first home of the Imperium when it took residence in 2016. This means that there are items that belong to the Imperium players. Although these assets are not really at risk, due to the asset safety mechanic, the Imperium still wants to defend the Keepstar in D-W.

At 18:00 on January 7, 2021, the warring factions prepared. There would be a battle for the iHub of D-W, with PAPI defending and the Imperium attacking, to reclaim what was once theirs. Both sides had formed considerable forces, given the time of the week. Notably, the system of D-W is also the “Capital” of PAPI member Pandemic Legion (PL). This status gives a boost to the defensive mechanic that the Imperium would need to overcome.

The battle commenced with both sides turning out considerable fighting forces of subcaps and some capitals. Since PL had a considerable defensive advantage, it was important for the Imperium to make quick progress. You can follow the timeline of the iHuB defence here. Despite the advantage PL had, the Imperium made sufficient progress that even once the PL hacks had completed they only managed to regain 53% control. This brief rally by PL was soon obliterated as the Imperium completed the rest of the nodes required to destroy the existing iHub and reset the 35 day timer.

The PAPI War Plan May Need Another Revision

Much has been said by the PAPI leadership regarding the FC team of the Imperium, even claiming that FCs or even entire alliances were looking for the door out of Delve. But we see that the battle report tells the non-spinnable story. The Imperium, numbering 1,485 pilots, took on PAPI with 1,795 pilots, and still the Imperium won the ISK war and reset the timer.

Note that the Initiative fielded 240 pilots, whereas not long ago Progodlegend claimed they, too, were looking for a way out of Delve. This again brings into question the veracity of what PAPI leadership is saying.  Does it even matter anymore to them to tell the truth? The only door Imperium pilots seem to be looking for leads to fights of this kind. If the Imperium can win the strategic objective while outnumbered, and also win the ISK war, then what does this say about PAPI?

Possibly the most shocking aspect of this battle is that, yet again, we see the long-held belief of “N+1 wins everything” being shot down. With the timers reset for so many iHubs, and further changes from CCP due, you have to wonder what plans PAPI members have for completing this war. So far, PAPI have stated that they have plans and phases for every circumstance. One can only wonder what the next phase of the PAPI plan of extermination holds for the Imperium.

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  • William Doe

    A 310 player advantage, defensive advantage as well.
    But they lost the ISK value despite all of that while adding to the fact they lost the objective as the defenders.
    If this keeps up, it’s time to start executing the exit strategy for PAPI because it’s not looking good for them in any perspective.

    January 10, 2021 at 7:33 AM
    • Garreth Vlox William Doe

      And then we get to see their “plans” for evacing anchored keepstars in the enemies staging region

      January 10, 2021 at 10:03 PM
      • Moomin Amatin Garreth Vlox

        Who does what with cores is going to be a good indicator.

        January 11, 2021 at 5:09 AM
    • Moomin Amatin William Doe

      It seems that the generally accepted view of a goon being terrible in every way may need review.

      January 11, 2021 at 5:08 AM
  • Rammel Kas

    Funny thing happened near the end of the contest. PL got lucky with a series of 3 nodes spawning in T5 and D-W and this almost swung it back. But the D-W node got ECM burst at the middle of its active cycle in growing tidi at just the crucial moment and Imeprium liberated 3 nodes back in rapid succession to turn it back into a 4-node difference in favor. Elise saw this happen and reshipped into a magus as well to try stem the node bleed. They eventually had 3 magus and their remaining HAC fleet on the last node in D-W. BUT then Imperium fleets came back and chased them even off this one, and I don’t think they had any further nodes appear in T5 which by then was the only place they could register any presence. And it is only 1 system out of the constellation battlespace. So they got squeezed out after that.

    January 10, 2021 at 9:30 AM
    • Moomin Amatin Rammel Kas

      It is amazing for The Imperium to even be in this position at all. Many iHub counters reset, cores due soon and of course a minor issue with the PAPI super fleet trapped in M2. A week really can turn things around.

      January 11, 2021 at 5:07 AM
      • Deni'z von Meanace Moomin Amatin

        Did anyone actually count the approx # of their supercaps trapped in M2?

        January 11, 2021 at 5:49 AM
        • Moomin Amatin Deni'z von Meanace

          Do people like counting in Eve?

          January 11, 2021 at 2:05 PM
          • Deni'z von Meanace Moomin Amatin


            January 12, 2021 at 7:03 PM
          • Moomin Amatin Deni'z von Meanace

            Oh yes, I forgot that does not travel well in text form. 🙂

            January 13, 2021 at 3:07 PM
        • Rammel Kas Deni'z von Meanace

          Not yet I think but spy types have used locater agents and video footage with zkillboard to figure out it was 337 titans alone.

          PGL mentioned “about 500” supers. in an interview.

          January 11, 2021 at 2:54 PM
  • kwnyupstate .

    All things are not equal including the effect of +1 papi and +1 imperium.
    PAPI overall are just not as good as shown again in this article.

    January 10, 2021 at 6:42 PM
  • Guilford Australis

    According to PGL on Reddit, he can’t succeed without a “numbers edge,” so maybe he’ll use his only excuse for literally everything and say that the war has stalled because TEST needs a few more months to do some move ops.

    January 10, 2021 at 9:22 PM
    • Moomin Amatin Guilford Australis

      If people are still believing PGL then please direct them my way so that I can sell them this bridge I do not have.

      January 11, 2021 at 5:09 AM
  • Simon Chui

    It’s looking like if PAPI can outnumber Imperium by 50%, they’re likely to win. If it’s only 20%, maybe 30%, Imperium is likely to win. Clearly, the Imperium has some force multipliers that PAPI are lacking.

    January 11, 2021 at 1:52 AM