Battle Report: The Assault Begins


Art by Elthar Nox

And so it begins. The assault that we have all been waiting for has commenced. At 1300 EVE on July 30, Pandemic Horde leader Gobbins sent a ping to the PAPI mega coalition for Harpies – and from there it steamrolled. With a Goonswarm Nyx tackled in 1DQ1-A on the T5ZI-S gate, the fight conglomerated around that point. A fury of pings erupted from both sides, rapidly escalating the conflict from frigates to carriers in a matter of moments. The battle started with a flurry of excitement from all combatants but ended in a demoralising defeat for PAPI. The battle report shows the Imperium victorious with 41bn killed for 7bn lost.

Small start . . . and then the escalation

With the Nyx tackled, PAPI Harpies descended rapidly on the lone super. However, they were not alone. Responding to the pings, a Goonswarm Eagle fleet combined with a Jackdaw fleet from the Initiative cut them off quickly. Realising that the Nyx would not be killed by the Harpies, PAPI quickly switched to brawling against the Imperium reinforcements. As brutal close-range combat commenced with PAPI, reinforcements started flowing through. An Army of Mangos Cerberus fleet and a follow-up Ferox fleet joined the fray.

Despite earlier intelligence that Fraternity (FRT) had cancelled their planned Friday move op, following yesterday’s defeat to Snuffed Out, their CNTZ turned up in force. Over 100 from Army of Mango (AoM), 92 from VENI VEDI VICI (VVV) and 78 from FRT all joined the fray. In the early stages the fight appeared to be even, with PAPI Harpies & Logi frigates taking most of the damage. But, it was only a matter of time before the tides turned. Anchored on the McManifest Keepstar, nearly 100 supers and carriers were sending their fighters into battle.

Baltecs Make Hash of the Cerberi

The Initiative, backing up the larger GSF Eagle fleet, circled the gate picking off interdictors, logistics, and command destroyers, but at one point they appeared isolated. Seeing an opportunity, the VVV/AOM Cerberus fleet approached at a rapid pace, even through the 10% TiDi that had embraced the system. As missiles flew towards the T3 destroyers, INIT aligned out, but just as the warp kicked in, big brother arrived. A Goonswarm Baltec fleet warped from the 1st Imperial Keepstar, landing dead on the PAPI Cerberus fleet. What followed was a slaughter. Megathrons annihilated the heavy assault cruisers whilst Eagles & Jackdaws ripped through PAPI’s assault frigates. PAPI had no option but to fall back to the gate.

Leaving behind a trail of destruction, the beleaguered remnants of the first PAPI assault in this final push made it to the T5Z gate. Aggression timers ticked down slowly as the Imperium booshed parts of the attacking fleet away from safety. Bombers launched on the Feroxes whilst Jackdaws and Eagles picked off any smaller ships with ruthless efficiency. Fearing a repeat of the deadly Pando/Alice bombing run whilst they hugged their extraction route, PAPI bought in Jackdaws to hopefully defend, but these too were put to the torch.

Adding up the cost . . . and looking for more

The butcher’s bill was hugely one-sided, with the Imperium only losing 11 Eagles and 6 Jackdaws from their mainline combat ships. In contrast PAPI lost 22 Cerberus, 54 Ferox, 45 Jackdaw and 189 of the 228 Harpys that were fielded. This was to be expected, since the announcement last week by all main PAPI alliance leaders that the assault will begin soon, the Imperium has worked itself into a frenzy. Sensing victory and a chance to put the “woodchipper” to good use, all players were pumped for the attack to begin. Industrialists have been working overtime; freighters bring in fresh ships, supplies, ammunition and fighters every hour; and each pilot has stocked their hangars full of ships. Whatever the fate of 1DQ, today’s fight has shown (once again) that it will take more than Assault Frigates to win the Siege of Terra.

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  • Garreth Vlox

    And so falls the first brick in the avalanche that will follow as the fort papi built next to goon staging falls down on their heads. *Boromir voice* “We never should have come here. Now, get out of here. Get Out!” will be the refrain among papi pilots as the butcher bill rises.

    July 30, 2021 at 4:33 PM
    • William Doe Garreth Vlox

      Let’s see if this loss will be written off and PAPI finds their balls to try something a bit more daring in the upcoming days and weeks. If they care about their almost destroyed reputation, they’ll probably try something else and not chicken out after this first loss.

      July 31, 2021 at 12:58 AM
      • Garreth Vlox William Doe

        I’m sure they will, they have backed themselves into the same corner that created the M2- slaughter. “We had to do something…” was the excuse last time, and it will be the excuse again.

        July 31, 2021 at 3:54 AM
        • kwnyupstate . Garreth Vlox

          They admitted they had everyone ready and had to do something and now they spent a year and their members were whining to them for being bitches and they once again had to attack.
          In both cases they ignored what made previous attacks successful and now this final attack was the last chance so if they didn’t attack they would have collapsed anyway in a few weeks.

          July 31, 2021 at 2:52 PM
  • Guilford Australis

    PAPI is constantly outformed and outperformed at this point despite its enormous numerical advantage. Go figure that a coalition led by incompetent imbeciles who spent an eternity promising its people things it can’t deliver now can’t even get its people to log in anymore.

    Unless PAPI somehow manages to get many titans into 1DQ, where we have five Keepstars and 40 Fortizars on the same grid – and finds the willpower to eat the massive losses that will entail – they have no chance of taking 1DQ. These stupid Harpy and Jackdaw fleets are nothing more than sources of entertainment served up on a silver platter to The Imperium.

    July 30, 2021 at 5:08 PM
    • Holy. Imperium has over 40 citadels on the same grid? Why is this the first I’ve heard of that? Who needs bookmarks when you’ve got tethers in every direction with fighter support.

      July 30, 2021 at 8:24 PM
      • kwnyupstate . Carvj94

        Is why PAPI has no chance at all.

        July 30, 2021 at 9:08 PM
      • Garreth Vlox Carvj94

        no, he said 40 FORTS on one grid, there is also a sotiyo, 5 keepstars and many other citadels on grid. This grid was built to be a living nightmare to assault, no matter where you land there is one citadel shooting at you, possibly several.

        July 30, 2021 at 9:25 PM
        • zamirroa Garreth Vlox

          Who needs titan when you can build citadels lol. So 1dq is the Modern Constantinople. Who knows when Will CCP implement a new weapon to destroy this

          July 31, 2021 at 5:54 PM
    • HerpMcGurt Guilford Australis

      “where we have five Keepstars and 40 Fortizars”

      Game is dumb.

      July 30, 2021 at 9:46 PM
      • Garreth Vlox HerpMcGurt

        PAPI could have attacked 1dq1 right off the bat before that fortress was built, but they chose to spend a year giving the imperium time to just keep adding layers to the grid. Now that is dumb.

        July 31, 2021 at 3:55 AM
        • HerpMcGurt Garreth Vlox

          CCP are idiots for allowing such broken mechanics.

          PAPI would never have been able to take 1DQ right at the beginning of the war when Goons owned all the constellations around it. You’re talking nonsense.

          July 31, 2021 at 7:32 PM
          • Garreth Vlox HerpMcGurt

            “PAPI would never have been able to take 1DQ right at the beginning of the war when Goons owned all the constellations around it.”

            I never said they COULD have taken I said they SHOULD have attempted to take it prior to it being fortified to the point that it now is.

            At no point in this war has TEST shown the TESTticular fortitude necessary to make a headshot play, but given how the war went it’s exactly what they should have done.

            Their numbers advantage, isk advantage and location advantage was never greater than in the opening months of the war, but as time went on the imperium grew and papi shrank, CCP nerfed income making leading to the imperium having a cash on hand advantage, and as papi forced the imperium into a smaller area it made it easier and easier for them to concentrate their assets and defense fleets.

            They should have gone for the headshot during the Init. relocation to delve while the imperium was busy covering Init’s tactical relocation of assets to 1dq1. At that point in time they still had several members of the imperium counted among their own ranks and sky high morale combined with enoung money and cheap ship prices (pre-poverty patch remember) that they could have afforded to simply swamp 1dq1 in numbers eat the losses and move on.

            The loss of the 1dq1 capital keepstar with everyone’s assets inside being lost would have cost the imperium itself and its members TRILLIONS in asset safety which would have resulted in a massive swing in both finances and morale while massively impacting the simple ability to field ships as they would now be scattered across lowsec asset safety drop points.

            August 1, 2021 at 12:06 AM
          • HerpMcGurt Garreth Vlox

            Ha, you said TESTicular!

            August 1, 2021 at 5:57 PM
  • J Moravia

    Don’t worry, everyone; PAPI will have some new subcap doctrines ready to announce in 2-4 weeks, and then the whole offensive will be right back on track!

    July 30, 2021 at 5:41 PM
    • Sirhan Blixt J Moravia

      Newer than 10MN AB covert Tengus?

      July 30, 2021 at 10:04 PM
      • Garreth Vlox Sirhan Blixt

        Wait, what? That’s their new doctrine?

        July 31, 2021 at 3:55 AM
  • chimpy

    I don’t think PAPI even want to win at this stage. They just want an exit strategy that their members will accept.

    July 30, 2021 at 7:59 PM
  • Deni'z von Meanace

    Realising that the Nyx would not be killed by the Harpies, PAPI quickly switched to brawling

    Pretty much PAPI behaviour. Looks like PAPI memebers didn’t heard that they gonna use ratting carriers/T3 vs. old doctrine Harpys and HACs.
    Not what this assault was about. To see if goons still alive and could mustered quickly?

    July 31, 2021 at 12:10 AM
    • William Doe Deni'z von Meanace

      Seems to be the case. Quite a humiliating defeat for their first big assault to 1DQ. It’d be easy for them to consider it just a manuever to test the enemy’s response, especially using a dated doctorine/composition.

      July 31, 2021 at 12:55 AM
  • HerpMcGurt

    I notice interesting parallels between the German invasion of Russia during WWII and this campaign. PAPI is like the Germans.

    – Scored a series of big victories at the beginning and took a lot of territory

    – Started with high moral but now flagging

    – Expected a quick victory and didn’t get it

    – Underestimated the organization and cohesion of their enemy

    – Logistics and supply lines inadequate and failing

    – Coalition with various members all wanting different things similar to the Romanians, Italians, etc. during WWII

    – Stalled in the face of organized and determined resistance like at Stalingrad

    Now, I am wondering if the Goons will be able to roll back all the gains like the Russians did on the Eastern Front. I expect maybe not. But we’ll see.

    July 31, 2021 at 7:36 PM