Monday, 10 May 2010

Eve Online: Pictures from Nullsec

This is just as I arrive in H-W, a system deep in Northern Coalition under siege from the Southerners. My cloak, (my left hand module) is on. I am poised to hit my microwarp drive (F2 key), the right hand module, if something decloaks me. In Eve a cloaked ship will be decloaked if anything comes within 2km. If that happens this ship would very quickly accelerate to 3821 m/s. Cloaked it's top speed is 59 m/s but that's because I have a very crappy cloak.

My overview has 4 tabs and this tab is showing enemy drones, ships and mobile warp disruptors. In fact this particular one shows everything - even a frozen corpse might decloak me if I get too close. The lightning effect in space is the mobile warp disruptors in action - if I decloaked and tried to warp off now it wouldn't work. This is a key feature of null sec combat the bubbles are how you trap people long enough to kill them.

This is a distant view of the bubbles. These bubbles are on our station in H-W. My overview is now using my pvp tab which shows just ships that aren't blue or in fleet as well as bubbles. Because of lag I actually have both my cloak and my microwarp drive on (I was mashing both buttons at once) and get to move around at 350 m/s cloaked. Still I was lucky not to die horribly during the few seconds when, at least from my perspective, neither module was active and I wasn't moving.

The mauve blodge at the lower part of the middle of my screen is a fleet of allied battleships. The red bar is them all firing horrible lasers of death at some poor bloke on the other side. Actually some will be firing weapons that don't have a visual effect but the Amarr long range battleships are certainly popular. At one point during this fight I counted 13 Apocalypses on the enemy side.

I changed sort order in my overview a few times. It's useful to sort by ships for counting. It's vital to sort by distance when navigating a busy area cloaked. All you really care about is what might come close enough to decloak you. At this point I've sorted by name as we were primarying targets by name. Hint: if you're making a new character and might be flying in nullsec don't pick a name beginning with A.

Here's another one showing as many ships as I could fit in one screen shot. At the top is the majority of the enemy including several capitals. There weren't any titans I don't think but there were a couple of supercarriers as well as dreadnaughts and carriers.

Our fleet commander was skillfully warping the fleet onto the field of battle close to a handful of stray enemies at the bottom of the screen so that we could kill them then warp out. Essentially we're picking off ships that are too far from the big blob right on top of the station.

At the top of the screen you can see a couple of purple dots. These are brave or lost souls who aren't with the main fleet. Quite possibly they are people who were inside the station and undocked when they heard on Teamspeak our fleet was outside. They will almost certainly die without escaping the cluster of bubbles surrounding the station.

The Space Tourist died shortly after. I was rather sleepy so when I warped to the gate exiting the system I wasn't instantly ready to press cloak on coming out of warp. I wasted maybe half a second but that was long enough for someone to target me (which prevents cloaking). I burned away from most of them but my untanked ship was killed by long range fire so I waited in the pod too for them to finish me so I could get a fast trip back home.

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