Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Interesting adventures

Well, the past few days have been quite interesting. Here's a few of the events...

I was ratting the asteroid belts in Illamur in my Thorax cruiser, minding my own business. Keeping an eye on the local channel, I was aware that there were a few Outlaws (pirates of -5 or less security status) in the system, but it was only to be expected since I was in a known pirate area! I was trying to be careful though. Luckily, I was on the ball when my Overview started flashing at me. Three of the Outlaws warped into the asteroid belt, all at the same time: Dirk Chivers, Karlemgne, and Mot DeDeux. What was also lucky for me was that they warped in about 60km from me.

I quickly recalled the drones that I was using against the rats, disengaging from the battle. When they returned to the cargo hold, I activated the warp drive, shooting away to a nearby planet before the Outlaws pack could get a lock on me. When I arrived at the planet, I selected one of my instas to get to a nearby gate, which was just as well because Dirk and Mot arrived at the planet just as I began warping away!

"You guys are good," I said in the local channel. "I'm outta here."

"You're not out yet," Mot replied. I arrived at the gate to find the 3rd Outlaw, Karlemgne, arriving at the same time. Luckily for me - again, the luck - I was able to activate the jump gate straight away, thus avoiding Karlemgne who was trying to lock me down.

"Ciao," I said in local, just as the jump gate activated and I left the system for Empire space. On the other side, I took a breather, allowing myself to calm down. The adrenaline of the previous few minutes was racing through my body, and I couldn't believe I'd just escaped a pirate hunter-pack from getting me! They were definitely good, being able to work out where I was flying to, and even cover the potential exit that I might have taken. Without the insta bookmark, I would have been toast. It was also good for me that I kept on the move when they first tried engaging me. Go from one point to another, and then to another.

I then went to another system and continued ratting in an asteroid belt. I was happily doing this, keeping an eye on local, for an hour. However, my vigilance finally failed me, and the 3 Outlaws finally caught up to me. Before I knew it, because I hadn't checked local, the 3 of them were warping in on me, and all within 15km.

I tried to run, but they were able to scramble my warp drive and lock me down before I could get anywhere. The firepower of their 3 Interceptors was then concentrated on my cruiser. I didn't even bother to fight, knowing it was pointless. In the time it took for them to engage and for me to type out "Ransom," my shields were gone and my armour was at 30%. They stopped firing, and we negotiated an amount.

"6 million," Dirk stated.

I looked at my wallet. I had 6.3 million. However, I also knew that pirate ransoms were based on the price of your ship, so I knew it was fair as my ship was worth just over 7 million. It was insured, of course, but I had about 12 million worth of weapons and equipment onboard. I figured that paying 6 million was better than paying 12 million to equip another ship.

I paid, and they left, with me having only 300,000 in my wallet.

Strangely enough, I was happy! How could you be happy, I hear you asking. I was happy because I had evaded their initial attack and escaped, and it took them an hour to track me down. I was happy because I still had my ship. I was happy because I was still waiting for the two Tech 2 ships to sell that I had on the market, and I was waiting for 54 million to come back to me.

So far, however, only one of them has sold, and I'm back to having only 27 million. But then something else happened...

I was again in Illamur, having just finished a trade run. I was talking to a member of Awox Inc, Robert Wells. He was a pirate, just like all the members of Awox Inc, but I do a lot of trade with Awox, the CEO of that corp, so Robert asked me if I wanted to help him hunt down another pirate, someone by the name of Coldt, I think it was. I said I'd give it a go, as I was happy to hunt down pirates given the opportunity!

I didn't know how bad things would get...

I exited the station in my Thorax, and Coldt was there outside of it. He had a Thorax cruiser as well, which gave me a good feeling. I thought that I could easily handle a ship that was the same as me.

I locked him in my targeter, and sat there, hoping that he would initiate combat, which would result in the station's sentry guns taking him out. He didn't. Instead, he warped to the planet where Wells was, and so I warped there too. Wells was in a frigate, and had decided that Coldt's 5 drones were too powerful for him to hang around for. Just as I warped in, he warped away, leaving me to fight Coldt alone.

Cursing the cowardice of pirates, I launched my own drones and engaged with my blasters, with Coldt quickly returning fire. His drones also swarmed around my ship, and before I could say "Holy shite!" my shields were gone. My armour was gone. My hull was gone. I was sitting there, my ears ringing from the explosion of my Thorax, watching the expanding gas cloud and debris of what used to be my favourite cruiser.

Coldt sat there in his Thorax, which looked so much more menacing now, and we looked at each other for a few moments before I regained my wits and decided to leave the area. I returned to the station, nursing a bruised head from where I bumped it during the explosion.

I decided to talk to Coldt and quickly established a comm link with him.

"What the hell were you using?" I asked him. I found out that he had equipped his Tech 1 cruiser with almost Tech 2 everything. My cruiser was able to do about 80 points of damage per second, whereas his was able to do 400 points per second. I shook my head in disbelief. No wonder he'd been able to destroy me so fast!

I thanked him for his time, and then contacted Robert Wells, cursing him for his cowardice and telling him I was never helping him hunt pirates any more. His abandonment of the fight was the epitome of cowardice, but I know I shouldn't expect anything different from pirates. I think this has helped me understand I can never group with a pirate in an attempt to hunt another pirate. A lesson learned.

So with the payment from insurance, I went out and bought another Tristan frigate, spending a few million equipping it. I then continued doing some ratting. Ah, I so love the power of blasters and missiles. It's interesting, but the frigate takes out other frigates and cruisers so much faster than the Thorax, as well as being fast enough to avoid the damage that the Thorax was unable to avoid. I think that I'll continue being a frigate pilot for quite some time....

Except for when I'm an industrial pilot. I received a request for business from someone last night, who wanted me to haul goods for them from Molden Heath to their region, which was 40 jumps away! Based on the time it would take to do that job, I wasn't able to see any worthwhile profit in it for me, based on what they were prepared to pay.

Thinking about it today, I've come to the conclusion that I should re-adjust my hauling charges. If I engage in trading between systems, I can make 600,000 ISK per jump, with a particular trade route I've found. What I've been charging for hauling is 25% of value of goods being hauled, plus 30k per jump. I've realised today that charging 25% of value can be a bit daunting to some, particularly if the value is in the many millions. So if I charge a flat fee of 400k per jump, a rate that's justified by the average of how much I can make if I wasn't hauling and just trading, then I think that will be agreeable to all concerned. Jumping through 40 systems would then cost the client a flate rate of 16 million ISK. But jumping through only 5 systems would cost them 2 million.

This can be cheaper to them than being charged 25% of the value of goods. If I was hauling goods valued at 20 million, then my old charges would be 4 million plus 150k for the jumps. My new charges would be only 2 million, better for them than my old charges, and still providing me with a good profit. Everyone wins.

I'll see how it goes... I think I'll advertise my hauling services on the notice boards.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh BC, did I teach you nothing? Paying ransoms? Fighting pirates WITH pirates?

/me shakes his head

However, kudos for getting out there and kicking pirate butt! It sounds like you’re having a wild ride. Your motives may not be pure, but your actions are (sometimes) righteous!

8/15/2006 08:54:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sorry, I forgot to add something. Do not over-rate interceptors. They are fast and hard to target, but if you can hit them they'll fall just as easily as frigates. If you have a webber, do try fighting back!

8/15/2006 09:51:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you Praetor. I'll remember that in future.

Unfortunately, there were 3 of them. I was locked down and at 30% shields before I could even react.

One on one's, in future, I'll remember your words.

8/15/2006 10:17:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

While it is sometimes prudent to flee, when you find your back to the wall - ALWAYS FIGHT! Fortune favours the bold!

8/15/2006 10:29:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great story BC !

The moment I read the name Cordt in your blog, I knew things were going to turn nasty on you.

I've never met the guy but he has posted some of the best Thorax setups at Eve forum ! Not only he can tank , but his DPS (as you have noticed) is insane !

see you in game :)

P.S. found your page from gamersinfo

8/18/2006 08:10:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

hi fondas, thanks for commenting! Yeh, things were certainly nasty with Cordt... I hope to one day turn the tables on him.

Thanks for visiting, I hope you come back often.


8/18/2006 11:25:00 PM  

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