Art by Redline XIII
Enthusiasts of Eve Online’s Alliance Tournament are likely familiar with the name BlueMelon. Considered among the best PvP pilots in Eve, he has been a key player on the AT circuit for years, flying and theorycrafting with elite teams including Hydra Reloaded, Pandemic Legion, and the controversial Warlords of the Deep spinoff from Hydra that was disqualified after winning AT13.
Up to this point, his achievements included multiple second-place finishes in the Alliance Tournament along with the revoked AT13 title.
He will now be memorialized for another accomplishment: pulling off what is, as of this moment, the most expensive theft in Eve’s history – by a wide margin.
As with many long-time Eve players, BlueMelon eventually became disenchanted with the game. “My style of playing is dead,” he said, explaining his decision to leave. It is the manner of his departure, however, for which he will long be remembered.
Revenge, goes the saying, is a dish best served cold, and BlueMelon’s revenge has spent seven years cooling.
As he tells it in a Reddit post announcing the heist, “Seven years ago, a friend and I decided to try and join the esteemed alliance Pandemic Legion.” The results did not go as planned.
EveNews24 covered the story in 2012 as told by BlueMelon’s contact in PL. But now the shoe is on the other foot and BlueMelon gets to tell the rest of the story, as he writes the last chapter himself.
“We had an Erebus class titan in hand, packed up all our stuff into the SMA and a few carriers, and got in touch with Centra Spike of HABIT to join PL. We were told to move the titan to a system in range of PL’s staging, and drop corp.”
“Back then,” he explains, “titan pilots had to eject from their ship to do anything, including drop corp.”
Since this is Eve, you probably already know what happened next. “Naiveté took over and we lost our titan to a well-executed theft and were quickly booted from HABIT.” When they attempted to contact HABIT’s CEO, Elise Randolph, for an explanation, what they got instead was the response, “Who even are you?”
That question, and its answer, is one that PL leadership will not likely forget soon.
After taking a year off to recover from the loss of a ship that was far more precious seven years ago than it is today, BlueMelon ended up back in the game, and (for a time) back with PL, though he explained that he was eventually removed due to a combination of personality conflicts, concern about lingering hard feelings over the Erebus theft, and other issues.
Ultimately discovering the Alliance Tournament, BlueMelon became a fixture on the tournament circuit. He told INN, “I became friends with some people in Hydra who invited me to join them after PL rejected my initial bid to join their tournament team during one of my stints in the alliance.” In his time with Hydra he notched several second-place finishes. After the controversy surrounding AT13, still in PL’s good graces, he found himself working with the PL team on theorycrafting and strategy, helping the PL team to yet another second place in AT14.
“This was a true story of enemies turned friends. I was respected, FC’ing, and helping, and generally, people’s concern over the Erebus theft had gone.”
Eventually, though, as the game evolved, so did BlueMelon’s feelings toward it. He told INN, “Lowsec nowadays has become quite dead. FW is fairly risk-free PvP for anyone involved. The blobs still occur and there’s very little anyone can do about it, but mainly any type of roaming you want to do nowadays HAS to be able to fight or tank supercarriers. Due to the hyper-proliferation of supercapitals, from ratting to combat, it is no longer any fun to just go into lowsec for 40-50 mins and see what happens.”
As he became disenchanted with the game, BlueMelon reached a fateful decision. “I thought it might be poetic to end my career in Eve Online . . . with a hefty theft that makes up for my Erebus moment seven years ago.”
On his way out the door, BlueMelon made off with 18 of PL’s unique Alliance Tournament ships – the spoils from past tournament wins. The total value of these ships is estimated at approximately 5.5 trillion ISK, dwarfing the previous “largest heist in Eve,” the infamous theft of CO2’s Keepstar and its contents by the Judge and Goonswarm a year ago. But while the ISK value of BlueMelon’s haul is immense, the ships themselves are unique, irreplaceable, and therefore invaluable.
The stolen ships include:
“Bear in mind,” BlueMelon wrote on Reddit, “this is completely unplanned, and could have been quite a lot more.”
INN asked him to elaborate, and he explained, “In my corp, Oblivion Watch . . . I held all the PL ships for the AT, the regular subcaps, the implants, the ammo including the old pirate ammo, the mods and all that, which in total would have been another trillion ISK. Furthermore, the amount of ships seen are realistically the minimum needed to hold a serious AT bid. If I had asked for more, I probably would have received them. Their regular ships, ammo, and all that were given back.”
In response to the inevitable criticism that his caper is hurting his friends in the game, he wrote, “Unlike [the sabotage of PL’s M-O Keepstar in May of this year], this does not affect any line members.”
“These ships are not being sold by PL, they do not need to sell them nor will they sell them.” he elaborated. Hulls like the ones he stole are “kept for the ‘elite,’ the Alliance Inner Circle.”
“Now they sit in my soon-to-die Amamake Keepstar,” he concluded, acknowledging that the Keepstar itself will likely not survive his theft for long, at which point the stolen ships will live on indefinitely in asset safety.
Some might call that theft. Others might call it collecting interest on his long-since departed Erebus. Most Eve players would agree, however, that it is actions like BlueMelon’s that make Eve special.