Providence Update: Provi-Bloc Holding PL at Bay


A lot has gone down in Providence since Pandemic Legion invaded on January 5, but perhaps the biggest story is what hasn’t gone down.  Before Friday, January 26, PL had been active in Providence for 21 days and yet had secured sovereignty in only one single system.  It’s a common enough story throughout world history: the plucky underdogs, fighting for their homes, manage to hold off a ravaging attacking force that should have rolled right over them.  Thanks to the efforts of Provi-Bloc pilots, and of FCs like Jin’taan from Curatores Veritatis Alliance [CVA], that story is playing out again in Eve.

The most significant action in Providence since INN last reported on the situation has been this battle from Sunday night, January 28, in which a combined Provi-Bloc fleet of mostly Feroxes defeated a PL/Northern Coalition fleet of Scorpions and Ravens in Y-MPWL, destroying 19b ISK while losing only 15b.  However, this battle is noteworthy not only for the victory but also the manner in which it was attained.  In Provi’s previous large battle, the 74b ISK fight in 4B-NQN on January 14, the Provi-Bloc fleet was heavily reinforced by neutral pilots from TEST and Goonswarm.  However, on Sunday night, no such reinforcement was present.  Provi-Bloc defeated PL and NC in a head-to-head fight, alone.  That’s probably not the way PL saw their occupation going.

An Interview With CVA FC Jin’taan

I caught up with Jin’taan after the fight to ask his thoughts about PL’s invasion and the Provi-Bloc defense.

INN: What’s your feeling about how the defense is going so far?

Jin’taan: Fairly well; with TEST on our side and our cap fleet slowly getting off the ground, I think PL is going to be stumped in killing our big structures, whilst we figure out proper counter strategies to PL’s sov tactics, which are so far proving relatively effective. Still, PL has already proven they’re not willing to rat in Provi to keep the ADMs up, making counterattacks incredibly easy for us if we feel the need to. Definitely not plain sailing, but fights like [Sunday] night where Provi alone can stand up to two of the biggest and best alliances in EVE…I mean, gives yah some hope.

INN: What was one time during the past month when you’ve been really proud of your pilots and your allies?

Jin’taan: During the two weeks I spent away dealing with real life (primarily exams), Provi really kicked it into gear. Provi’s in such a better spot and it’s almost entirely due to the efforts of individuals like Sharp, Rounon, & Eos who’ve put the hours in to grind out timers and make sure our [territory] stays safe.

INN: Regarding the battle last night, can you explain a little background about the fight, and describe the battle itself?

Jin’taan: The background is that this was the second timer on our Fortizar. As you know from our [coalition] meeting, Fortis are the real kingpins of our defensive strategy, so we decided to go ham on defending it, using a strat similar to the one we used here.

The Battle Report

Jin’taan’s POV video from the battle, which he requested that I not link due to the presence of unscrubbed fleet comms, clearly shows how the battle unfolded.  PL split their fleet into two arms, sending one arm away from the Fortizar in order to draw away defending forces while the other arm parked approximately 40 kilometers away from the station and tore into its armor.  The CVA-led defense fleet made short work of the diversionary arm and quickly regrouped on the station, where the PL battleship fleet showed remarkable composure by remaining focused on their primary target.  Over the next 35 minutes, PL pilots continued to hammer on the Fortizar, gradually being forced further and further from the station as Provi-Bloc battlecruisers closed to point-blank range and disrupted PL’s tightly organized formation.  The fight very nearly ended in a PL victory, but in the end the timer expired with the Fortizar’s armor still at about 25%.

The Implications

I asked Jin’taan, “Do you think anyone expected Provi-Bloc to hold off PL so successfully and for so long?”  His answer was insightful and realistic: “I think that belies the intensity of PL’s attack currently, which is relatively low. PL hasn’t deployed caps against us since the 3D- engagement where we used TEST’s superfleet to rectally ravage about 50 PL Dreads. For now it seems their focus is on nibbling away at sov and hunting our ratters, over going balls deep to try and kill all our assets, whilst attempting to split us up through prodding at our diplomatic and internal ties, which makes sense from their PoV, as that’s what gets them the most winnable fights.” Even though this fight may have been won without assistance from the outside, Provi-Bloc still owes a lot to third parties such as Goonswarm and TEST, who have a vested interest in not wanting PL to expand, and also in not wanting PL to have a direct border with Legacy or a southern border with the Imperium.  PL being distracted by conflicts elsewhere in their territory has also kept them from bringing their full might to bear in Providence.
The fight is also far from over. According to Dotlan, PL took five systems in Provi on January 26 and another one on January 29, and now holds sovereignty in seven of Providence’s 79 systems as of the time of this writing.  Although there will surely be counterattacks, and many of them will be successful due to low ADMs and long timers in those systems, such a spurt of activity clearly shows what PL can accomplish if they do set their minds to it.

Within Providence, though, the mood is buoyant.  Participation in fleets is high, and ratting and mining continue as normal, albeit with a closer eye than usual on local chat and on the directional scanner.  The Provi-Bloc pilots I’ve spoken to are determined to keep fighting for their homes until PL withdraws.  In the meantime, Provi-Bloc has given the galaxy a proper underdog to root for.

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  • rabakukken hatoyama

    We will fight until the end and if PL runs over us, we fight back until provi is back in our hands, this war will only be ended, when PL goes back to their space.
    i will fly with TEST, i will fly with Goons or whoever fights PL.

    February 3, 2018 at 10:13 PM
    • Alua Oresson rabakukken hatoyama

      Quote: i will fly with Goons
      You have my sword good sir.

      February 4, 2018 at 9:32 AM
    • I think everybody knows that PL will not hold Providence in the end. Everybody, including NCPL.

      February 4, 2018 at 11:44 AM
    • I’m fairly sure they’ll more or less abandon all that space once stations are converted to citadels. That’s why they deployed after all.

      February 6, 2018 at 1:17 AM
  • rabakukken hatoyama

    February 3, 2018 at 10:33 PM
  • This dude is funny: I like Jin’taan.

    Also, elite excavator-sniping alliance Pandemic Legion unwilling to commit heavy assets and focusing on ganking ratters? You don’t say! And to think it’s Goonswarm that gets the rap amongst pubbies for being low-life griefers…

    February 4, 2018 at 1:01 AM
  • Ryu

    simply: lol

    February 5, 2018 at 2:54 AM
  • Deni'z von Meanace

    Unfortunatelly and obviously ProviBlock can’t resists and too bad I couldn’t join them due to silly KOS.

    February 7, 2018 at 9:11 PM