“They had really good spies, that’s for sure…” – FCON Fleet Commanders
On February 19, at 20:33 Eve time in the Venal system of 92D-OI, FCON forces found themselves trapped. Fighting PL, OSS, and OOS. The 31B ISK engagement lasted just over ten minutes, and ended with the FCON losing nearly their entire fleet.
The Fleets and Personal Account
The OSS and Out of Sight fielded Hurricane Fleet Issues and Sleipnirs, while Pandemic Legion attacked with its Proteus doctrine. FCON, traveling to aid the Imperium with a strategic operation, formed in Aurgoror Navy Issues and a Proteus fleet.
TMC spoke with FCON’s fleet commander, Nour Samy, for the details on the fleet’s demise.
TMC: Something seems to have gone very wrong while you were moving. Tell us what happened from the beginning.
Nour Samy: I had planned originally to form Cerberuses or ANIs for the timer, as I did not want to risk too much, knowing we had quite a bit of travel ahead. We were isolated and quite far from where everyone else was meeting. Given the risk of bombers, I decided to go with ANIs, but one of our Skymarshalls told me to use Demon Fleet (armor T3s).
TMC: At which point did you get caught, and what caused you to lose so much of your fleet?
NS: While we were moving, I had a plus-one scout on comms. All seemed well, with PL and OOS reported in N5Y. Knowing that there were three to four systems ahead of us where they (PL, OSS, OOS) could drop on my fleet, I was a bit on-edge. Scouts began reporting several drag bubbles on our way and I started to become alarmed and warped my fleet to the N-5 gate in 92D at 60km. Just as we warped my scout reported a hostile Falcon at 0m on the 92D gate in N-5 with a cyno lit. Hostile began jumping in and local quickly rose to over 100 or so (in N-5).
TMC: This must have been where you got trapped, but couldn’t you have warped away?
NS: Yes. I immediately called ‘gate red’ and began aligning out, but dictors started jumping in and bubbling. I called for ‘props on’ to get out of the bubbles as best I could, but half the fleet was caught in bubbles. Hostiles started pouring into 92D and I decided to try and hold the grid with allied support a few jumps away. To my dismay, the logistics wing was still too close to the gate—they started dying rather quickly. At that moment I was in full evacuate mode. I tried to call for help, but the other Imperium forces were preoccupied with the strategic operation six jumps over. CO2 was coming, but got caught in the bubbles mentioned above.
TMC: Sounds like a turkey shoot.
NS: Right. Once three-fourths of my logistics were down, they started chipping away at my armor. I was webbed and so was the majority of my backup FCs. As soon as I went down, I called a secondary anchor and the same thing occurred—he was webbed and killed. This happened over and over again with all my backups. I was left in a pod and some of my fleet was out of the bubbles, so I warped out what I could of the fleet to a safe POS in the system. Unfortunately, PL had come in and spread points across a lot of our fleet and a few more died.
TMC: Is this why you say they had spies in your fleet?
NS: The uncanny timing of the hostiles jumping in, pointing out me and every backup FC, and pointing all of us as we were warping away can be attributed to spies and my comms being broadcasted.
A senior fleet commander in FCON also stated the same, saying “They had really good spies and really good timing, that’s for sure.”
Out of Sight, and Pandemic Legion may have had perfectly timed everything. When you fight the same enemy fleets with the same FCs, it is not very hard to acquire a list of every player that could possibly fill the fleet command spot once the main FC goes down. Intel on enemy fleets is also very easy to come by. It was well known that the Imperium was forming for the strategic timer, and FCON had a few routes to take. These routes, of course, would be known by the locals. It is entirely possible that they timed the drop on FCON and performed their ambush perfectly.
FCON lost a total of 27.7B ISK in the ambush, while OOS, OSS, and PL took just under 4B ISK in losses combined, mostly in the form of logistics and Hurricane-variant ships.
This article originally appeared on TheMittani.com, written by Lemba.