This morning saw the destruction of 9 Rorquals, 6 Hulks, a Dominix and a responding carrier in the Outer Passage system of 2-84WC at the hands of Welp Squad. Over 50 billion ISK’s worth in ships were destroyed, with Welp Squad losing only 385 million in the process. INN sat down with Welp Squad’s Havish Montak to discuss how something like this comes about.
Editor’s note: The following transcripts have had minor edits for clarity and grammar, but otherwise are presented intact.
INN: How does something like this start?
Havish: So, we have hunters flying around and looking for targets, either big or small. This time, they bumped into a group of rorquals mining away. With no idea on their fittings we decided to have a go at them. In this case we did not have eyes on the targets but we knew that they were there. The main eyes were sat in a wormhole waiting on our fleet to come into location before moving in using the WH. We had eyes on them half an hour before, but because greed is a thing, they did not stop mining, so we guessed that they would still be there and we formed and made a bee line for when the trap was sprung.
INN: Looking at the fits of the rorquals we’re seeing DDAs in the lows, up to 5 drone navs in the mids and no panic or tank mods, what do you think of these fittings?
Havish: The DDA in the lows are great for killing stuff, but the drone navs just show that they were not paying attention whatsoever and going for max krabbing, trying to go for maximum ISK from each rock. It also showed that they were not paying any attention to anything in intel, and this is what happens. The most embarrassing was the one Rorqual which only had a core, 5 T1 drone navs and 3 stabs and a damage control. It deserved to be killed and removed from the space of New Eden. The cost of the rigs was more than the rest of the fitting alone. They feel that they can be saved with intel and they want to make the most ISK per hour, so they skip on tank and try to escape before they get dropped. We had no idea on the fittings at the time. We just formed up and dunked them.
INN: When you are forming a fleet for an op what do you assume and how do you build around that?
Havish: I assume that they are under a cap umbrella and they are ready to fight, and that they have decent fits or are ready to refit on the fly, so we come prepared for the worst and enjoy the best. This was a holy grail of badly fitted Rorquals; this is something we’ve not been able to do in NC and PL rental lands, where all the rorquals we found where fit for tank, with capital ancillary reppers that could not be neuted out. We made sure to have scanners to find when we could break them, using bubbles to stop them from rearming with extra charges. In this case there was no tank, and no PANIC. This is something we pray for. I was bridging bombers in, and within 90 seconds they had already lost the carrier; all of the hulks and two rorquals were down. The carrier was not on grid originally but warped in the second we popped the cyno, so he knew it was in trouble, and he was dead before I even got on grid.
INN: Looking at the carrier fitting, we’re seeing a more sensible fit. There’s PvP mods fit and it looks like he was ready to warp in to fight a small gang.
Havish: The carrier looks like a solo PvP fit. It’s got some tank and I guess he came in expecting a small gang to deal with but he couldn’t fight off 200 bombers. The most damage dealt was 7,500 by one bomber so that’s about 2-3 cycles of bombers hitting the resist hole as we use a wide range of bombers dealing all 4 damage types. We decimated the fleet within 5 minutes, so there was no way for them to rage form a defence. I guess that they weren’t under an umbrella, thinking they were safe within a dead-end system.
INN: Where does this rate compared to other high profile kills?
Havish: This is number two, behind the Vendetta kill that we got a week before. When I saw the pings and comms going off I was tempted to head home and get in on the action but I was still happy to see the squad working hard and getting the first kill for the Imperium. We killed another super a few weeks ago; we think it was a bot. It showed no defensive behavior and was not exciting at all. The most exciting fleets we have is when we take a small gang and kill capitals on keepstars within the PDS range. At one point we had a carrier that launched fighters at us, which de-tethered him automatically. This was like, “wow, we did not need to trick this guy to get him killed.” After this they rage form and chased us out and we just picked them off as we went.
INN: If people wanted to join in the action, what do they need?
Havish: Have a Loki in 1DQ1 and just being able to jump or death clone over to join the fleet. We only operate out of 1DQ1 and we never deploy from staging. This allows us to be easy for people to join up. We train our line members up and I feel we have some of the best members of the Imperium flying their ships. We recruit from the basics from frigates and onwards. Also, once we hit ISK positive we’re happy to welp the fleet and have fun as we don’t like having to fly back. Thanks to insurance and SRP, most line members end up making money from ops, as the payout is shitstack SRP which is the lowest but line members still end up being net positive most of the time. We welcome everyone: even first day Alpha clones are welcome; they help provide key EWAR to help kill targets. Within a week you can slowly step up and fly better ships. There’s free handouts of ships and Karam fleet is always welcoming new members
INN: Thank you very much for your time today, is there anything else you would like to add?
Havish: We’re here to help feed other squads by teaching members while always making sure that they are making ISK with the handouts and the SRP programs. And, as always, Welp Squad is the best squad.