As a line member of the Goonswarm Federation, I find the smaller engagements like the one I was on the night of August 18 to be an important part of the what we’re doing. These fights help condition our line members, while giving us a bit of fun and shows the enemies that we’re not, despite narratives to the contrary, bad at Eve. Not entirely, anyway.
I returned home after a five-hour drive from a customer’s lab expecting to end my day with more monotonous, and largely useless paperwork. Then a ping came out with a familiar FC whom I like to fly with, Darkwing Fiftytwo. He’s a Space Violence FC and I find that he’s a good mix of both tolerant, in that he lets the children play, and firm, shutting said play down when it’s too much. I quickly joined the fleet, logged in, and got setup for the fleet.
Darkwing’s fleet didn’t disappoint. Immediately as we undocked a small NCdot Cerberus fleet that had been harassing the undock was ran off, licking its wounds as we made ‘diplomatic’ exchanges with the one or two that made the mistake of not immediately warping off. It was a small thing, but a good way to start the night off, and things were only just getting started.
Goons Will Be Goons
The level of shenanigans varies from fleet to fleet, though ours seemed to rate especially high, at least at first. Xel was in fleet, setting his own cadence of our march to the battlefield, woven in with threats from Darkwing to turn the fleet around and take us home if we couldn’t form some semblance of intelligence before hitting enemy territory. It’s a familiar and almost endearing trait of our fleets, and to be completely honest, I would be more concerned if it were actually quiet during one of our roams.
As we headed for the M-OEE8 gate, our scouts reported a Pandemic Horde fleet comprised of Scorpions and Nagas were on the other side of the gate. We jumped in and were told to hold cloak. Though some of the fleet members were having trouble listening, as always, and began decloaking immediately after jumping in.
The spooked PH fleet warped off, so we bounced to the out gate and after watching them for a few seconds decided to warp in. Unsure of what to expect, we heard “this is gonna hurt, take warp” over comms. We landed on the Scorpions as they were attempting to cloak up and hide. The FC ordered our tackle in, wondering out loud if they were smart-bomb fit or not, as he brought our fleet around to keep the Sabres in range of logistics. Our Sabres began dropping bubbles all over the Scorpions and between them and the hero tackle, Scorpions began decloaking all around us.
Almost immediately we began to see ECM hitting our fleet, but it wasn’t what we – or the FC – were expecting. The Scorpions were fit with burst jams and while this was a bit annoying, I found that I was locking targets up before my launchers cycled and my damage output wasn’t really being affected at all. The first several Scorpions were surprisingly volleyed off of the field, though with the attrition throughout the fight eventually lowered to two or three weapon cycles per kill. Still, the exchange was more than acceptable for us.
Once we had a large number of the Scorpions down the Nagas warped back in with a sizeable wing of frigate support, but we still had numbers and began free firing on the small ships for a few kills as the FC began to bounce us around their fleet. The FC struggled to set up probes to establish a warp-in on the enemy fleet, mainly because he had been drinking and neglected to filter out our own fleet. However, he quickly redeemed himself when he noticed that the enemy had left two Basilisks behind in their haste to relocate.
After taking the opportunity to deliver a few more Basilisk killmails, we moved back to the gate only to find a DARKNESS Cerberus fleet there. We immediately engage them as well, confident in our ability to bloody them as well. Despite a few minor issues, we did manage to kill a couple of Cerbs during the skirmish before realizing that we were low on logistics from our previous battle, and the enemy had a carrier on grid now.
The FC finally decided that wisdom dictated it was time to leave and make our way home. There was a lot of excited chatter on the way back, a lot of attempting to link battle reports that weren’t up to date, and debate on just how much damage we had done. Come to find out the results were as good or better than we had expected.
All in all, it was a great way to start the weekend, therapeutic even. I work hard during the week and can’t express enough how much joy it is to farm tears with my Goonswarm brethren on the weekends. I highly advise that if you’re looking to have some fun, just fleet up and get out there. Become a part of the wrecking machine that is the Space Violence squad!
Violence isn’t an option, it’s a guarantee!