Saturday, December 8, 2012

Rise of the Cruiser

With Retribution came ship re balancing. The biggest benefactor to these changes were by far the T1 cruisers. Long before the expansion launched our theory crafters buckled down and spent some time exploring the possibilities these changes would bring. The day Retribution went live we had ships in place and a fleet doctrine ready for trial by fire. That fire came quickly. The SFI blob was in for a surprise.

The first test of our new doctrine did not come in a medium plex as I expected it to but on a gate. Our cruiser fleet with T1 logi met a Minmatar fleet in Huola. The time spent in EFT was well rewarded. Even though the Minmatar brought Guardians we quickly dispatched them. They tried again with more guardians, cruisers, ahacs, BC, and even BS but our fleet held. Both fights we took little to no losses.
We then punished UK for their lack of foresight. More brawls where our cruisers and T1 logi decimated the field.

I knew that the Minmatar would quickly catch on and around day three they did. At the same time UK and LNA overcame some of their differences and decided that we were a bigger threat. It just so happens that took place in Isbrabata, one of the new gate systems. It's nice to see they really did make a big difference. The Minmatar pinched our fleet on a gate and we had to disengage, very well played by them.

We have had many cruiser fights in the last week or so. We have won many but also lost a few as the Minmatar brought more numbers, coordination, and caught up on fits. Even though these fights are T1 hull cruisers there is much more depth and strategy to them then most would realize. What happened last night in Kourm should have made it clear to anyone who was on field that Faction War plex fighting has changed forever.

The first engagement of the night was in Ezzara. We were set up in a medium plex. LNA/UK/Defiant Legacy and to come into us. Primaries were called and ships started dieing. Both sides had substantial amount of Logi. The Minmatar had 7 and Amarr had 6, all T1. We had the advantage of being set up with a few Black Birds at range and a few more tricks up our sleeves so we won the fight pretty handily. 27 ships destroyed to 9 lost. From there we went back to Kamela and got ready for round two.

A medium plex opened in Kourm and both sides made their moves for it. What followed was the longest fight I have ever been part of. Almost an hour and a half of constant fighting. The Minmatar forces did not skimp on the Logi. I believe they had brought 10 and we had also brought our fair share. After both sides took some initial losses Logi chains were set up and reps were almost impossible to break for both sides.

I found myself calling rifters primary just to have something to kill. Both sides tried to Alpha ships before reps could land. Some times it work but mostly it didn’t. Both sides used damps to slow the lock time of logi but with so much on field it was damn near impossible to damp it all out. The Minmatar even brought in a ECM burst super tanked vexor to break our Logi's lock. To top this all off there was a group of awoxing/pirating caldari militia killing both sides as they tried to reship. They got rewarded by a War Dec from Fweddit and I.Law for their actions.

The point finally came where I could no longer break any targets. I asked if we had anything else, anyone else to bring on field but the answer was no. I made the choice to break off and regroup. Only one or two people were pointed and left to die.

After the fight many of us sat around on comms and chatted about what will probably go down in Amarr/Minmatar history books as one of the greatest fights ever. Ideas were tossed around about what we could have done and what we can do next time. I mostly sat there with a smile on my face listening to the chatter. It's not often you get to FC a fight like that.

Monday, October 8, 2012

A Birthday Party and Bitter Vet's

I.Laws one year anniversary is today. The Corporation itself has been around longer but a year ago it became the home of Shalee, Ryven, Kato, Phione, Czech, Snape, Joni, and myself. Since then many others have joined and left us. It's been a hell of a year. We survived our “CEO's” bio mass, a massive corp theft, and a few long distance moves. While there were whisperings and serious talk about leaving the Amarr Militia we stuck to our guns and saw it through. I'm very proud of what we have accomplished in the last year and look forward to the next! Thanks to all who helped make this thing a success.

I make mistakes every day. In real life and in Eve. The important thing is I also learn from them. As our large fleet activity went down and small gang stuff went up I started watching the kill board like a hawk. I've always been a numbers guy even though I hate math. I liked to look at the fits and the damage taken and all the other little things. Also, it's fun to see how much isk you cost the other guys after a fight. As time went on I started looking at that corporation efficiency number a little too much. After one of our newer members lost a few surprisingly expensive frigates I almost went off the deep end.

I've always looked at our kill board as the worlds first look into our corporation. When I want information on a pilot or their corporation I look them up on Eve Kill or Battle clinic. While this won't give you their complete biography reading the dust cover is better than nothing. So when I see “wtf” losses on our own kill board I cringe a little. I put the fleets I FC under the same scrutiny. Even more so if I'm honest. This is where the bitter vet syndrome starts to kick in.

I started taking losses to personal. I blamed myself for not getting my people fights. Everything that went wrong was my fault. Luckily I had Shalee to talk me off that ledge. For those of you that don't know her very well she is one of the kindest and sweetest persons you will ever meet. She also gives great advice and is willing to listen to me bitching about whatever. After I started getting a little burnt out she suggested I take a break from FCing and I did. When something popped up I would go for it but besides that I relaxed and did solo and small gang stuff. I forgot how much fun that could be.

After some time just blowing some stuff up without all the frustrations and stress that can come from FCing it felt good to get back into the chair. This past weekend has been a blast. It culminated in a six hour fleet yesterday that started on our home station in Egg. About twenty war targets must have thought they were being cleaver camping our undock in a mix of BC down ships. Fweddit had just put a fleet up and a few of us I.Law guys decided to join in the fun. RTSAvalanche of TMFED was already outside poking them with a stick when we undocked a few armor BC. I told my pilots to hold aggression until the Vagabond red boxed. He did and I called for the fleet to undock. Many of the war targets were spread out and out of point range but we grabbed what we could. It was a beautiful site watching almost thirty purple boxes explode from inside the station.

Since we were already in a fleet and in a killing mood we went on a nice roam. We went up metro and got a few kills then came back down once we got word that LNA was messing around in Kourm. A Caldari fleet was asking for help but they welped into the Minmatar before we were ready. We picked off a Cyclone at the sun then set up in our cruisers in a Major plex. Even though we out numbered them by about ten they had two falcons and were in BC's compared to our cruiser fleet. Setting up in a plex was to negate the Falcon issue. After a while they didn't come to fight so we set up on the Houla gate. After a small wait they came into us in mostly armor BC's. We had a nice little brawl and we held the field for once. It felt good calling a larger fight again. I really do get a feeling of satisfaction watching(mostly) focused fire and a primary dropping like it should.

I told Shalee one night, during one of my “bitter vet” conversations that leading a fleet can have dizzying high's and terrible lows. You really do feel responsible for the outcome either way. I can't tell you how good it felt, how my hands shook from adrenaline when I baited out a minmatar carrier and killed it. I also find it hard to explain why I almost fall into a depression when I make mistakes and get us slaughtered. What I do know is that I need to find a balance. I can never be a“didn't want that fleet anyways” kind of person. There has to be a happy medium. Care enough to get people the fights and kills they want while not suiciding them while not emo rage logging every time I lose a fight.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Why Do I Even Bother?

For months on end, night after night, my fleets clashed with the Minmatar in the triangle of doom (maybe death is better than doom?) Epic battles from thrasher free for alls in minor plexes to the only capital fight in US TZ for the last eight months.
After Fweddit and MT left for Caldari space I changed how and what we flew. Mostly smaller faster ships. We roamed the war zone looking for little fights, brawls, and ganks. You may be surprised in how little we found.
After a few roams all over the war zone, some nights going as much as sixty jumps without killing more than a rifter I was bored, burnt out, and hating Eve. I got this way a few times. I wanted a fucking fight! But since LNA is lazy and all they do is sit in triangle of death night after night you have to go into them. Below Im going to detail what happens when I take a fleet to kourn area.
Step 1 Form fleet, get 8-12 pilots.
Step 2 Pick ships.
Step 3 Shake your head as half the people can't fly what you need.
Step 4 Roam down to Kourm area and bait the gate camp.
Step 5 Kill a few things. 
Step 6 Either hang around waiting for LNA to forum up or leave.
Step 7 Fight LNA (Late Night Alliance) blob and die in a fire.
This is how it goes almost every time. I guess I have a reputation for running away now as Susan Black and Gritz like to point out. But what are my options? I can't get my guys a fight anywhere but around Kourm. When I do chose to fight in Kourm I'm almost always outnumbered and out shipped. The Minmatar base there. They see what we have and ship accordingly.
We can either take a fight we have little chance of winning or leave. Either option is not very appealing to me. Last night I asked for drakes and canes. I got about half the fleet into the right ships. The rest was kitchen sink. When LNA finally came to fight they had almost all BC's and matched my numbers. They also had links and we did not. I ended up welping half of my fleet and we got three kills.
Later on LNA did an amazing thing and came over to Sisiede. We had been playing around with a few neutrals and killed their Vagabond. A war target Vexor landed at the sun and we killed it but not before one of our BC's was pointed and local spiked by around ten war targets. Some pleasant local banter followed where I was told I always run away. I mentioned the numbers and reshipping issues. To that Susan Black told me to get more people.
Believe me we have been trying. We are getting new pilots. Unfortunately many just don't have the Skill Points to fly what I need to effectivly fight the Minmatar head to head. There are just not that many pilots with the skills and wallets needed that want to join Amarr.
Every night I ask how many pilots are online in both Militias. The average is about sixty Amarr and 240 Minmatar. Last night had 9 pilots online. The entire Amarr Militia had 38! We had about a quarter of the entire militia online in our Corp. Add in alts and Afk people and it was probably closer to half.
So why do I bother getting fleets up? I know we won't find much on a two hour roam. I know I can't fight in Kourm area effectively. We get more kills hunting in small packs in the Dal cluster. What is the point of even trying to do an organized fleet?
To answer my own question, because I need to. Because people like fleets. Because when people apply to they want to roam and fight and have fun. Because there is always that off chance we will run into another roaming gang and have a good fight.
I don't give two shits what the Minmatar think. They can tell everyone I run away. They can think we are not trying to grow our corp. They can think we are scared to fight them. They can talk shit all they want. The simple fact is when we had even numbers we dominated the Minmatar fight after fight.
To the best of my knowledge I am the only US TZ Amarr FC left that runs even semi open fleets. There is just no one left. There is no back up I can call. There are no other corps or FC's I can ask for back up. When you see me and my fleet out and about that is it. That's everything I can get. Every single person I can beg, borrow, or steal to toss in a ship.
I may be a shit FC. I may welp my fleets almost every time I try to pick a fight in Kourm these days. I may end up burning out completely and spend all my time mining. I just want to have fun. I just want the pilots who risk their ships with me almost every night to enjoy the game. That is why I bother.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Umm, Ok?

I got on Eve today after sleeping in late, talking to a friend on IM, getting sushi, and a very pleasant phone call. I relaxed and lounged and ate raw fish dipped is soy sauce and wasabi and I never once thought “fuck me we are down to one system!”. It just never crossed my mind. You see even though I FC for Amarr from time to time and I do feel a sense of pride and loyalty to my faction and the many friends I have made here I just can't be bothered to care about system sov.

Call it apathy if you want. It's just not something that I, or most of Amarr people I know care to much about. There was no huge cry when the Minmatar started taking all the systems. No Call to Arms to save them. If fact we used a few days after our cash out and the subsequent Minmatar plexing push to take a much needed break. I think many in the Minmatar Militia can sympathize with me here.

There was heated fights over Kamela then Kourm. After Amarr took Kourm most of the fights stayed there as the Minmatar pushed it to keep us out of Huola. This is the system occupancy fights that mattered. Once Fate and Moar Tears left FW we chose not to defend Kamela since we lived elsewhere. If you are keeping score at home there are 70 systems in the Amarr/Minmatar war zone and the fighting happened in two.

Many people have suggested that we should spread out. Put bases everywhere and plex for system control from them. It is a sound tactic. But why them were most the Amarr and the Minmatar in my timezone based in the same area? Because we wanted to fight not plex! I can not stress this enough. We live where we live for ease of access to fights. That applies to both the Amarr and the Minmatar.

After my sushi and pleasant phone call I looked at twitter to see Poetic felt the need to blog again. He seems very keen on getting a medal from CCP for controlling all the systems. Kudos to him and the Minmatar if they get a medal I'm sure many people will proudly wear it and many blogs will be written. What I don't understand is this.

Last week I was of the mind that this medal (if we get one) will be a tad undervalued due to the remaining Amarr rolling over, giving up. But this week, I've come around to a different view of the situation. Fuck the Amarr. Even without Fweddit and Moar Tears and Lost Obsession, they still have more than enough pilots that they could have held one or two systems (nothing is a certainty, but they would have made it exceptionally difficult at the very least.) If the Amarr want to roll over like submissive dogs, then that is their choice. I'm sure there'll be the "we gave it to you" propaganda from the Amarr, but since they didn't prove they could keep total system dominance from us, their complaints are a moot and indefensible point.”

So by continuing to say what most of us have said for the last three months will be propaganda? Since when were we out to prove anything in the realm of system control? I just don't understand where this is coming from Poetic. Every Amarr I know has said for a very, very long time they can't be bothered to defensively plex. Why do you think Fate left? Why do you think so many Amarr moved to Egg? It's because we don't enjoy plexing! We want to use our time in Eve to do things we enjoy.

I think most have made it clear they consider the PVP aspect of Faction War to be the determining factor in winning or loosing. System control is mostly a PVE experience. Again two systems heavily fought over. If you see me or my fleets in Sathogas it won't be to help save it. It will be looking for a fight while the Minmatar try to take it.


Thursday, August 23, 2012

Not PVE Blog

Is anyone else sick of the PVE talk? Forums, blogs, and local is filled with it. I'm all for the chest beating when you win a nice fight with internet spaceships. If LNA beats me down I may not enjoy the taunting and obligatory blogs that accompany it but I know the next time there is a good chance myself or my friends in Amarr can do the same. This is what should matter in Faction War. PVE should be a means to an end, a way to support the war effort. We are not miners, we are not incursion runners, we are combat pilots for fucks sake. Lets act like it!

After the recent loss of many of our friends I.Law took some time to relocate our dispersed assets back to our home base. We resumed formal corp fleets Tuesday night. They have been somewhat disappointing. I was expecting Minmatar everywhere. EM and their neutral support has been south of Dal for the first time in a long time. LNA members have been blogging about wanting to fight and in Poetics case being a down right jackass. In reality it has been rather slow.

For those of you that may read this but have not flown in my fleets I do have a few rules. I ask any links with nudity or vulgarities are labeled as such. I also ask that people lay off the sexual insults regarding our Minmatar friends. While I am no prude I want everyone to be able to enjoy themselves. Normal smack and is more than welcome of course and is even encouraged!

This was why I was so disappointed in Poetic's recent blog and corresponding Eve Forums post. We are all just people who fly internet spaceships. Why can't he insult people without focusing on their sex? Why was that even necessary? Was it to piss I.Law off? Did he think that would make us undock in battleships and sit on the Huola gate waiting to get our revenge? Poetic's display of sexism was truly pointless. He should be ashamed of himself.

Since resuming fleeting activity we have seen two things. The first and most annoying to me is stabbed and even cloaky MWD trick frigs. Dozens of them. Very annoying to hear your inty pilot call point then watch as your prey warps away.

The second is over shipping. Last night I showed my fleet to the Minmatar. Let them get a real nice look and then hung around waiting for a response. I always try to mix things up. Some nights I will try to hide part of my force to get that upper hand. other times, like last night I just lay all my cards on the table and see what comes. As I watched the Minmatar form up and head out things looked good. We wanted a fight, they were undocking so I could only assume they were looking to brawl also! Happy times all around.

We were in Shield BC with fast tackle. The Minmatar were bringing the same. Then came the Battleship. Scorch Mega Pulse or maybe even beams were not something I was looking to fight. We were pretty evenly matched till that point. Unfortunately its tank and damage projection was more than I wanted to deal with. Instead of getting a nice brawl with the Minmatar I took my fleet elsewhere.

I can't really fault the Minmatar for bringing what they did. Everyone wants to win. But if you do want the fight, and you know what the enemy has, and you have no way of evading their eyes, bring a fight they will take. I am known as a fairly conservative FC. I don't “leeroy” my fleets all that often. I like to know what I'm fighting and I like to know we have a chance to win. Ships are expensive.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Thank F&@#ing God

Thank god that's over with. I can't tell you how much I wanted to just cash out and stop caring about plexing. To be honest with you I never really cared about what level we were at or what percent of the war zone we controlled. What I did care about was getting my Corp mates and people who I fly with some isk in their bank accounts. In my humble opinion CCP really fucked up FW with Inferno. They tried to introduce some grand occupancy plans where system ownership mattered. What they got was a massive influx of LP farming alts and still the same two or three systems being fought over.

I fully expect the Minmatar to take back most of the systems and hit T5 very quickly. Not because the Amarr Militia can't stop them. We could put up one hell of a fight. I expect this to happen because the Amarr combat pilots have better things to do than defensively plex a system 15 jumps away in Metro. There is just no incentive to do it. The Minmatar Militia have the easiest time getting to T5. They have an entire region of space, something around 40ish systems that are almost inaccessible or so inconvenient to get to its not worth the time or effort to go plex, offensively or defensively(except for AFK plexers as no one goes to these systems and its safe).

So I have to ask, why the hell are there so many systems? Why, when the two Militia's live mostly within four jumps of each other are we forced to try and control 70 systems? If that number was brought down to 30 systems total and the map was made remotely fair I think we would see a increase in fighting over systems and PVP in general. This would also deter AFK frigate alt plexing. Concentrate the people you have in FW. Make every system mean something. Honestly, when was the last time you were in Eytjangard?

I fully expect the troll blogs to start up about how Amarr failed to get T5 and fell from T4 so quickly. Things like "Even with a null sec blog Amarr suck" will be tossed around I'm sure. That's ok. The Amarr Pilots knew what they were up against. A astounding number of afk plexers, a map that's so messed up Patton himself wouldn't try to invade, and a hole so deep and dark light can't escape. Amarr created a strategy, implemented it, and accomplished their goal of a lucrative cash out. There was a lot of talk about waiting to hit T5 or just cash out at T4. I was in favor of T4. A man can only bash his head against his computer desk so many times while orbiting a button before brain damage becomes a real possibility.

Once this is all over, and Amarr pilots take a much needed break from plexing, we can get back to what FW is supposed to be about. Running Missions on our Minmatar Alt's and getting space rich!

Saturday, August 4, 2012

In Love and War

I had thought to write this before the recent flurry of blogs and forums post but Susan's most recent tirade finally got me to put pen to paper(or fingers to keys as it where). Susan Black recently wrote "While I never, ever intend or strive to single out people for personal attacks that go outside the bounds of game-play, some of what I say is taken very personally.". What Susan may fail to understand is that we invest large amounts of time into Eve and singling people out in game is almost the same as a personal attack against them. Most people don't respond too well when you write a poem implying that they are a witch.

If you were to take a little time and go though her old blog posts you would see she spends a lot of time and effort singling people and corporations out. She repetitively insulted Individuals,

"If you want something different --something less, where GMs try to make things a little less hard, and a little more fair, then I suggest you go back to playing WOW.".

"In the midst of all this cowardice, the Amarr have attemted to paint a picture to the rest of EVE of an elite, underdog Amarrian force, overpowered by the tyrranical regime of Minmatar bullies. In a post truely made up of "lies and tears" on Sovereignty Wars, Amarr pilot Almity attempts to portray his corporation as an elite small group depending on the advanced tactics of 'guerrilla' warfare."


"This was seen this weekend when the Amarr (specifically Smurfsbrigade) abandoned their ships in a station and ran home in pods ",

"Some of the arguments they gave were uncannily close to what I’ve heard I.LAW members say in the past"

"As far as his Fwedditer Interviewees go, someone's been drinking the Amarrian Bitter-Vet Kool Aid. I'm kinda disappointed."

"Even though many considered this a surrender by Wolfsbrigade"

And the entire Amarr Militia,

"Amarrian ‘vet’s’ are whining about “why I hate Faction War”

"Honestly, I used to feel kind of embarrassed by the Amarr, and the picture of incompetence they were painting to the rest of the EVE community."

"The Last few months have been very eye opening, as Amarr Militia veterens who were once thought to be hardened warriors have been reduced to the ranks of whining, sniveling juveniles. In an uprecedented show of tears--rivaling even those of the ongoing Hulkageddon--the Amarr have literally bathed the streets of their abandoned home systems with a salty flood of incompetence."

She continues on by saying "I sometimes wonder if these people—these Amarr, (I realize that often a very few tend to loudly contribute to the overall perception of their Faction) will ever realize that their personal attacks, their local spamming and threats have little effect. I wonder when people will realize that entire blog posts ranting about how I am a liar and should ‘suck it’ just makes the writer thereof look petty and immature, and doesn’t really inspire remorse on my part, or even much of a thought beyond what I write here.".

If someone looks petty and immature it is you Ms. Back. Almost every blog or forum post is in response to a specific attack from you. People have every right, and will exercise that right, to respond to the vile and insulting things you say.  I for one will not turn another cheek when you insult my friends as you so frequently do. I will blog and post and rebut what you say. This is how things are done.

I do find it funny how any response to Susan is labeled as "crying", when any Amarr pilot posts on the forums they are "cry babies". Susan spends the vast majority of her time blogging about how the Amarr suck. Should she be surprised when she get a negative response to that?

"I grow incessantly frustrated and disgusted with the growing argumentum ad hominem stance of people like Shalee Lianne, and others"

Shalee's recent blog post was in defense of her friends and her Militia. She did not say, or call Susan anything that Susan did not say first. Shalee and her blog were attacked by Hans(CSM) for doing so. When did it become ok to lob insults but not to rebut them? Does Susan expect a free pass? Should the entire Amarr FW community let her spout her hate speech and toss insults at anyone who dares to speak up? Fuck no. It infuriates me that Susan is playing some sort of victim here. Being the aggressor the vast majority of the time she should expect a healthy dose hate filled back lash.

"Contrary to what anyone in Faction War might tell you, it’s not just about getting good fights. There are extreme elements of camaraderie and loyalty that you will not find anywhere else in this game."

Susan and I agree on this point. While I do enjoy the good fights I'm here in FW because of the friends I've made. I don't like it when my friends are insulted and demeaned. I can only assume Susan Black feels the same way. I hope Shalee will use her extremely popular blog to keep countering Susan Black's hate filled rants. She has every right to post op-ed's in defense of her friends and Amarr, it is her blog after all(looking at you Hans).


Saturday, July 7, 2012

After Action

Here in we have been doing some thing we call an After Action Report for a while now(Shalee's idea!) I figured I would share last nights report with you all. Enjoy!

We formed up around 0100 eve time In Egg and rolled out Nano BC down. The Minmatar had a gate camp on Kourm Kam so we went the back way to pick the rest of the fleet up in Kam. Once we were assembled we went to fight the camp but Fweddit fleet showed up at the same time and the minnies ran. A Neut Pirate fleet showed up to help the Minnies but they would not come close enough to gate to fight. Got a few kills then moved on.

We roamed up Sosala way and got a few kills.

Arayar was vulnerable and intel told us they were trying to form a fleet to hit the bunker. We went up to see what they had and the fun began. We warped onto the ihub and spread points getting a few nice kills including a Damnation. A few more warped in(fail intel on their part) and we killed them. After coming in and out of system they hit the bunker again. I had us warp back in but they ran as we jumped in.

After we landed at the bunker someone opened a Major plex and I had us warp to it. The Minmatar landed a few min later and we slaughtered them. We lost a falcon and a dessy. Falcon was my fault as I thought they would try and go into the plex and not die horribly on the acceleration gate.

We decided to run a Minor plex and camp a gate hoping they would come back. After the Minor plex failed to decontest the system and the enemy fleet was reported in Oyo I decided it was time for us to intercept. Before we could go far a scout reported Baha off station possibly afk in a Drake. He was and he died in a fire! His pod must have been afk also.

Before we even left local the Minmatar came back to Arayar. After debating for a few sec if we wanted to jump our nano fleet into an armor Cane fleet we said fuck it and went in. Drakes broke cloak before the lighter stuff and falcons warped off to come back at range. Canes melted in seconds once the rest of the fleet decloaked. We killed four Canes, a ruppy, BB, Arbi, and some smaller stuff while losing 4 frigs.

Battle report for that whole thing. Almost 3bil killed and 300mil in losses.

We took a break then headed back to Kourm area. Got intel of a Muninn camping Kam gate at range so we sent 2manno to get a tackle. He did and it died.

Since the Minmatar packed it in the for the night we went on a roam up Metro and we were rewarded by a pirate Tengu jumping into our fleet.

We went all the way up to Resbroko and got a few kills. A Scorp jumped into us and we went GCC. I am so used to flying with people who know the rules of GCC I kind of forgot to tell the newer people. Few people died to gate guns but nothing expensive.

We called it a night soon after. Was a great fleet overall with some great kills. Our inty pilots were kicking ass and we got a few very nice pods. Good job all!

What's in a Name?

It's was not an easy choice. Even in a game your grow attached to things. I have spent the last two years in the Amarr Militia and it grew on me. I can't help but feel a little sad we may soon be parting ways. It is almost like an era is coming to a close.

Since before Inferno launched a small group has been very vocal about the repercussions of the changes made to Faction War(a few very well known and respected Minmatar included). Many of these people were shouted down and said their doom and gloom predictions would never come to pass. Some predictions have not came to pass. The docking issue is a pain in my ass as an FC but we are able to work around it. The incentive to join the winning side has pulled many more pilots into the Minmatar fold but we still win many of our fights.

While the Amarr has gotten combat pilots, many of them seasoned veterans the Minmatar have pulled a 1,700 pilot lead. They have gotten many PvE pilots, enough to pressure every Amarr held system. The doom and gloom people predicted this. The winning side will keep winning. The availability of easy Isk ensures this. Farming Minmatar LP with an afk alt in a T1 frigate is safer than mining in high sec.

At the start of Inferno I honestly didn't give this too much thought. I figured it would be more for us to kill. After a few weeks the gravity of the situation started to sink in. With so many new and dedicated Minmatar plexers any system we flipped was just a pile of isk for them to flip back. Meanwhile the Amarr Militia had little reason to defensively plex. Hours spent in a system to try and hold it would just increase the Minmatar wallet size.

As the weeks after Inferno's launch turn to months something must be done. A war is expensive. When I ask for a certain ship type for a fleet and people are no longer able to afford those ships or even the potential loss of that ship something is wrong with the system. As the Minmatar printed their own isk for almost a month riding the coat tails of the Goons then control enough systems to coordinate an effort to raise their control level to three or four as they please the Amarr struggle to make any isk at all.

Missions are not viable. LP made from kills and plexing won't pay for much at level one. Capturing systems to see them flipped back a week later and add 20 billion Isk into the enemy’s wallet is not a solution. How do we keep fighting? How can we make the Isk we need to pay for ships and fittings? We turn Caldari!

Susan Black blogged about it, she was wrong, but what else is new? Shalee posted on SovWars the real version of what we plan. We will join the Caldari Militia but stay and fight the Minmatar. We will get Cladari LP for killing Minmatar and capturing their plexes. The Cladari love to plex(god knows why) and have enough systems to reach a higher war zone control level. Why not play the system? Nothing changes but our Militia chat, current war targets will remain war targets. Where we live and fly and fight stays the same. It's a win win for us.

I feel like we were pushed to this point by broken game mechanics. We don't want to leave Amarr Militia. We want to stay and fight but with almost no Isk coming in how long could we pay for our war? There are times in life where you must make difficult choices. Risk losing the war to keep flying under a certain banner or change in name only to keep up the fight?

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Been a Long Time

Its been a very, very long time my friends. As I sat on the undock of Kourm V and camped LNA in one of their home stations I could not help but smile. Will this be a sign of this to come? Was it a one night deal? I don't know but it was sure fun as hell!

The night started out asking around seeing who was doing what. Strayshot was leading a plexing fleet so I decided to put up a roam. Nano Battle Cruisers down was the order of the day. Most nights we get around 10-15 pilots. We do our “elite gorilla pvp” and roam and have fun. I was surprised to see the numbers I was getting. More and more kept joining and soon we were pushing 30 people in fleet.

We roamed around looking for anything to kill. It seemed every Minmatar we could find was running for their life to avoid our BC blob of doom. Hmm, so that’s how it feels to be on the other side of the blob. After some looking we found a Goon Swarm fleet in Egg but since we had just taken a little break it was taking some time to rally the troops again.

The Minmatar also found the Goons and were headed their way. We decided to let them start hacking into each other then crash both their parties. The goons were in RR Domies with a few other BS/BC. The minnies where in mixed BC mostly. Once the Minnies jumped into Amamake we jumped Auga and headed to the gate.

Once the fight was confirmed top belt Amamake I jumped us in and we warped to 0 of the belt. The Minmatar had been kiting the RR Domies and were about 50k off us when we landed. I called for the fleet to burn into them and spread points. I was rather surprised to see a Vaga burn right into my fleet. It died in a fire. Ok we will take that. We pointed everything we could and Fweddit's Arty Thrasher fleet landed on field. Lots of stuff died and we took no losses. Amarr Victor! Er Big Plays!!!

After waiting out our GCC timer we roamed around looking for anything to kill. We got word LNA had a gate camp in Kourm on Kamela gate so we decided to break that up. They ran. Our scouts informed me they warped to Kourm V. I sent Kato in a cane to see if they wanted to play but they would not red box him. Once the fleet landed they docked.

“So guys want to camp them in?” “Hell yes!” was the response from the fleet. Camping LNA in their home station on a Saturday night. If you told me a month ago we would be doing that I would have never believed it. Local was full of scams and Susan Black quotes. It was good. We decided to call it a night and headed to Kam to dock up.

LNA started to come back out but we were losing a lot of people. Sorry LNA I'm not that dumb. They had seen our fleet comp for over an hour and we were losing a lot of people. If they wanted to fight now its because they had an ace up their sleeve.

I enjoyed last night. We only got one real fight and it was pretty one sided but that's not the point. Amarr worked together very well. Many different corps and Alliances working together in the proper ships to control the entire war zone. I hope we can do this again from time to time.

Friday, June 22, 2012

An Apology

I know when I crossed a line and with my last post I did. I may not agree with Hans or like what he has to say but I did go to far. Hans, my apologies.
I have worked very hard to learn how to FC, get people to fly with me, and bring a fight to the Minmatar. When Hans suggested I was running he did make me very mad. I lashed out at him then and we spoke in private mails to try and hash things out.
After that we had a few more disagreements that were never settled. His blogs and posts may not have been directed at me but many seemed to be and I took them as such. After a little time I thought it was all over until he said the same things on a response to a recent blog.
Since I had just blogged about LP and I do live in Egg I took his post as another below the belt insult. Normally I just let these things roll off but lastnight I decided to let Hans have it. For bad or worse I wrote what I was thinking and hit the post button.
We are all adults and curse words are used in friendly and heated conversations to make a impact. I could have used others but I was trying to make a splash. What I do regret most is insinuating Hans broke NDA.
My next apology is to my corp. I never intended to drag I.Law into this. My personal rantings on my personal blog are my doings. We may have joked about Hans is a new word for douche but that is all.
I will sit here and accept all abuse tossed my way. God knows I deserve it. Just know my corp mates had nothing to do with it.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Stop Being a Hans

Before I get the obligatory “u mad” I will answer that. Hell yes I am mad. My anger reaches back a few month before Inferno. The forums were ablaze in discussions over the proposed and rumors changes, not all of it was civil. Most did keep their cool and gave their views on the good and the bad. From my preservative it was almost an even split on most issues. The issues were debated to death, brought back to life, and mercilessly slaughtered over and over.

I never really posted on the forums before but what better time to start than on something I almost cared about? Giving my opinion on the docking issue I left it at that. Once it was settled that you would not be allowed to dock in enemy controlled systems I.Law leadership decided to move from Arzad to Egghelende. We did not want to risk being locked out of our assets and since Egg is closer to Kourm, what is considered by many the center of the war, we thought it worked out very well tactically. In addition many of us in I.Law like to do a little pirating from time to time and Egg is great for that.

I didn't think much of our move. What commander fighting a war would risk losing access to all his weapons? We fought like hell to help keep Kamela for those that chose to base there. If Kourm was in danger of being lost would the Minmatar have kept all their ships their? I would say no.

By now Hans Jagerblitzen was taking some serious heat on the forums. Many people did not like the changes and they told him so. Most knew he could do little to sway CCP but since he was the liaison he bore the brunt of the assault. Instead of remaining civil he lashed out. He chastised corporations for moving from the war zone or considering dropping from FW all together. Most of this was directed at Amarr. Since the Minmatar were clearly winning the numbers war and controlled many more systems than the Amarr they had little to complain about.

Even in a heated discussion people were expressing their concerns and praise for the up coming changes. Hans took it upon himself to insult and degrade anyone not for the changes. His response turned from “I'll pass it on” to “suck it up” and “come at me bro”. How can people discuss something they disagree with without, um, disagreeing with it?

In my views Hans was meta gaming the fuck out of FW and his role as CSM. I found it rather telling that the Minmatar started pushing systems before any real announcements were made. I called him out on the forums and left it at that. To be fair to him I mailed him in game and explained that I don't hate him but disagree with how he is going about the FW changes discussion. Since then he has posted almost everywhere how Amarr just needs to suck it up and “come at me bro”.

I mostly left his underhanded insults alone. Why feed the troll? Until recently I thought we had moved past the whole moving to Egg was somehow I.Law retreating. I was wrong. Hans must really have a hard on for what I say. He must really fucking hate me. He must hate I.Law. He can go fuck himself.

I recently blogged about how fucked up the LP situation is. Goons recently confirmed what many had thought. Hans must disagree. Since I posted my last blog he had this to say.

You sir, get what Faction Warfare is all about. You’ll go far here, keep up the good fights. Thanks for bringing all the action, sure beats sitting in Egghelende complaining about station lockout and shitty LP prices doesn’t it? “

Are you for fucking real? Hans you sniffling piece of shit. I'm out fighting almost every night. I FC fleets and kill shit and die and have fun. That's my Eve. I will bitch, whine, complain, and blog about what I think is wrong with FW. But I don't sit in Egg. Who the fuck do you think you are?

You said “come at me bro” and I have almost every night. Hell we even tried to get a cap fight in LNA time zone and you fucks ran. Props to FWEDDIT for bring you a fight. Lord knows I try but unless you have a BC for everyone of my cruisers or twice my fleets numbers or logi when we have none you run like little girls. Since Amarr does base in more than two systems right next to each other we don't have the luxury of almost instantly reshipping to match what LNA brings. If we win the fight we win, if we lose we lose. End of story.

So yes, I am mad. Not at the Minmatar though. They have done an excellent job using the current FW rules to hold systems and make some good isk. I'm mad at Hans for being a Hans (In I.Law vent we don’t say douche any more we say “stop being a Hans”).

So Hans, stop being such a fucking Hans!

How Hard Could It Be?

How Hard Could It Be?

Today Shalee and I had a bunch of stuff to buy and move. Not the most enjoyable activity in Eve but one that must be done. I had bought a bunch of ships and needed to fit and arm them. For the last few months Thrashers and Ruptures have been my ships of choice. Everyone I build is pretty much the same. If I need something specific for a fight I just change up the one I'll be using for that.

After fitting the first five ships exactly the same I thought about something Shalee had said a few nights ago. “Why isn’t there a button that fits everything including ammo, rigs, and drones?” she mused. My right hand hurt already. The new inventory system made my task even harder. Damn she has a great point! I was sick of fitting ships and I still had another fifteen to go.

In the past I enjoyed fitting ships. As I grew as a pilot (stopped fail fitting ships) my fits became pretty much standardized. Any enjoyment from fitting my day to day ships quickly went away. Now its mostly just a chore. I still enjoy playing with EFT when I open up a new line of ships and weapons or if its a really expensive/cool ship. Sadly those are few and far between.

I like Shalee's idea. I love Shalee's idea. I want to see it come true. How nice would it be to buy your ships and fittings, click one button, change name and undock ready to pew pew the world? I'm not lazy, really I'm not. I just like convenience. I'm the guy who will spend a million isk more on a mod than go one jump to get it. Ok, maybe I am a little lazy but its still a great idea. I mean, how hard could it be?

Monday, June 18, 2012

I Hate Faction War

I Hate Faction War

No really I do. Before the patch it was ok to say that. System occupancy meant nothing. People fought, plexed, missioned, and complained how CCP didn't care about FW. CCP finally gives FW some loving and I fucking hate it now. I hate the not being able to dock but its not a game breaker. I hate orbiting a button for hours hoping to maybe get a fight. I hate all the things /emo rage....

Of all the things I hate about current FW is the LP system. I was never a mission runner. I buy plex to support my Eve habit because I can't be bothered to mission or mine or do indy stuff. But that's me, many of my friends did run FW missions to make their isk. Now they are cut off from that. Amarr LP is hard to come by and worth jack shit. In my two years in FW I have made a grand total of 451,605 LP. About 420,00 of that has been since Inferno launched.

With the LP I have earned I could buy two or three Omen Navy's. If I flew them that may last me a week. If I sold them I'd have enough isk for thrashers and a few ruppys for a week of plexing(unless I did the current Minmatar strategy of stab everything I fly). Two months of LP for maybe a weeks worth of combat ships. This math sucks.

The winning side should have advantages. That's the point of winning. But in a game of numbers and isk the advantages compound. The Minmatar currently have 1200 more pilots than the Amarr. Even with less systems to plex the pay out is still massive even for more pilots. CCP has given the winning side of the FW battle everything. Including the added incentive to entice more pilots to join the winning side. I think I know why.

Money. Not eve money but real money. The power struggle between Amarr and Minmatar always went back and forth. In the run up to Inferno the Minmatar held the advantage. They used their numbers and coordination to push a huge numerical system advantage knowing that the time it takes to flip a system after the changes would dramatically increase. This gave the Minmatar a massive advantage, a huge influx of players, and a whole pile of isk.

The Amarr on the other hand had their source of income cut off. Many have opened second, third, or fourth accounts to try and make isk in other ways. Even more have resorted to buying plex. CCP makes a profit off of every plex sold. They make even more when someone opens a new paying account. People like there corporations, they have friends here and they don't want to leave. They have to pay for their pvp some how.

Susan Black recently blogged how the Minmatar are letting systems go. Keeping Amarr controlled systems low enough so they are stuck with horrible LP and LP store prices. Once Amarr takes a few systems they have a few more ready to be taken back. She may be full of it but the tactic is very valid. Soon many Amarr pilots will be broke. They will be buying plex or mining on a second account. CCP wins big.

I love my corp, I care for my friends, I'm not going anywhere. But how long can other pilots hold out? Not everyone can afford plex or second accounts. Some even have to earn enough isk to pay for time in game. The system has to change.