Thursday, 29 January 2009

It's a new dawn, It's a new day, and I'm feeling AWESOME!

Today is thursday, and today there will be pew. I woke up this morning at 6.30 this morning, I was cold and very hungry. Some of you lazy buggers will be saying 6.30 thats crazy holmes. Normally I would agree, but I had my final exam to do at 8.30 after which I resubbed. It was unnaturally dark all through the morning, perhaps even the God's mourn at my return. But return I shall, and fire shall rain down from the heavens as I carve a path through the heathen armies of the carebear. Ok, i'll stop that now but before I get to talking about my first day back in the game, other events must be adressed.

First of all my work on my first official eve video begins, I have prepared the frame of the video including song list, duration, and more bothersome things. All that I have to do now is to make some good fresh fraps material and plug it in to the video slots. I will be using sony vegas pro for this video, just as soon as my brother gets me a copy (a legal one *cough*). The sheet of paper that I taped to my desk is still holding up nicely and with any luck the big glaring letters will remind me to simply press the F9 button, hopefully.

I have been watching the recent qualification rounds of the alliance tournament 6 and i have been enjoying them quite a bit. I have to give a thumbs up to CCP for reducing the usage of logistic ships. I absolutely hated the dual logistic setups, which in turn made many many fights incredibly boring. I was quite pleased with the duration of the fights as well, where one side dominates the other. Nothing quite as entertaining as watching a team getting wiped out in such a short space of time. One thing that has has suprised me was the success of the militia teams except the minmatar, lol slaves. Despite their success I'd still like to see the factional warfare teams to only use the ships belonging to their own races, I think its a bit more characterful and could make some interesting fights. While ghosting the eve-o forums regarding the tournament I picked up on the complaint that the start stop commands are not that clear. This resulted in several players jumping the gun and geting penalised for it. I think you have to be pretty damn stupid to start a fight 7 minutes before its scheduled, but then again EVE is full of idiots so CCP better go ahead and clarify things futher.

So for the first time in a while I logged back into EVE, and it was a good day, nay a great day. In the first day (couple of hours) I have done over 500M in damages without a loss. Here is what happened: realising I had very little isk I picked up my Devoter with the purpose of selling it (no isk to fit it). I was also invited to go on a Tuskers roam so i had to get a ship together asap. Luckily Ka Jolo informed me that he had a Maller with my setup on his alt. This was great news, I delivered my Devoter to Hevrice and traded it in exchange for three fully fitted mallers. One was ready now, the rest I have to get another time. With the fleet set up, consisting of a maller, vexor, ishkur, and two incursuses, we set off from our headquarters. I had been picked to act as scout due to my tank, and I was an easy target (lol).

The engagements went as follows:

1. I jumped into a system, with the rest of the gang on the other side. Sitting at the gate was a non flashy Lachiesis. This meant my gang couldn't get involved without coming under attack from the sentries. Grimly I decloaked and sought to approach the lachiesis. As expected he agressed and locked me down, but, and its big but, he strayed into web range. He was dual webbed and scrammed (close range module for extra tears). I slowly broke through his buffer shield tank, all the while he was doing respectable dps for a recon ship. Unfortunately respectable dps wasn't enough and he quickly popped, I was left with 70% armour. Scooping the loot I docked and got my repairs, even more eager to continue the roam.

2. Again I was on my own as I scouted out a system. Warping to a station to scan down the nearby belts I came across a non flashy Taranis 50km away from me. He quickly locked and MWD'ed towards me. We scrammed and webbed each other at the same time, but he must have been suprised at my damage, as he failed to shoot or release his drones before he exploded into a million fragments. Nice.

3. After failing to bait another interceptor at a belt in another system, I called the gang in. Local soon spiked and the other guys were ordered to dock in order to not spook the guys that just came in. There was a Curse on scan but he was smart and recognised the trap. A duo of a Lachiesis and a Rapier however failed to check local and warped on top of me, at 0. This would not have seemed so silly if it wern't for the fact the Lachiesis was fitted with damps and rail, and the Rapier is primarily a kiting ship. The Lachiesis was tackled and was taking heavy damage, when the gang came in and unfortunately the rapier bolted. The Lachiesis popped and we once again scooped the loot. Damn gang members muscled in on my kill ;D.

4. After the aformentioned fight we repped up and prepared to move out. At this point Cap'n Tickles called over vent that he was under attack from a non flashy rupture. I warped to the station willing to agress under sentries to help my gang mate. Unfortunately the large station placed me 30km away so I couldn't do anything. All that was lost was a cheap incursus. But this was not the point, we would have vengeance on this agressor. Ka Jolo docked up and climbed into his myrm. I provoked the rupture into agressing me and we duked it out. By about the time the rupture was in half armour, Ka Jolo was able to undock and attack the rupture (the myrm tanking the sentries reasonably well. The rupture de-agressed hoping to re-dock, in response I loaded up my conflags and let her rip. A nice blue flash was our reward. Not content, the Rupture pilot would be in our next engagement.

5. We passed through a few more systems with no luck, then we looped back round to head back to HQ. As always I went first, and picked up a Harbinger on scan. I warped to the nearby belt to bait him, and I was almost about to give up when he shows up on overview. To my surprise it was the Rupture pilot from before. We tackled each other and slugged it out. My friends jumped into the system and warped to me. Only seconds after my gang landed, a Falcon uncloaked 100km away from us. He jammed me pretty much permanently, but it wasn't enough as my freinds all had him pointed (Cap'n Tickles was now flying a Thorax). The remaining Incursus pilot attempted to go after the Falcon, who promptly fled, but unfortunately for Aldour he was too far away to help kill the Ishtar that had arrived on the scene. Free from the jammer, I was able to tackle the Ishtar before he could get away. The Harb popped to the torrent of blaster fire that assailed it, and the Ishtar followed suit soon after, not seeming to have any form of tank. Once again we collected the loot as the Falcon returned too late to save his friends. He fled once again, and we got to split the spoils, of which there was many, including some faction bits and pieces and officer DNA and tags. A t1 frigate and cruiser gang (with the exeption of Jolo's Ishkur) killing a Battlecruiser and HAC without a loss, is pretty decent in my books.

So my first day has ended, and the eye of the God's rest upon my armoured shoulders as I spill blood viciously and with glee. Hopefully this is an omen of times to come, but the best thing was the fact I frapsed pretty much all of it. At this rate my video will be finished in no time. More pew will follow so please keep an eye out for updates.

Sunday, 25 January 2009

Retrospective pt 4

So here is the fourth and final part of my longwinded retrospective. I hope I've not bored you too much, but next week I shall be resubbing to eve and getting back in the game. In previous parts I described how I had yet to find a corp that I liked, but this was about to change.

After being thrown out of a corp after my trial period with no reason given, I resorted to browsing the eve-o forums in the recruitment channel. Up until this point I had usually applied to random corps who had offices in the stations I occupied, or had been invited by passersby. As always I began searching for a pirate corp, or one that is heavily involved in pvp. I wasn't particularly interested in joining 'famous' or well established corps, I would actually prefer to be with a corp from the very beginning and help it grow and develop.

This was how i came across The Sons of the Fallen, who had just started up and had recently joined the Brothers Grim. alliance. This corp consisted of three people, the two directors (who were friends IRL) and me. Shortly after joining I became the ranking member, as the directors had exams and took a break from EVE. Unfortunately they had not given me any roles or instructions while they were away, so essentially I became the only member of the Sons of the Fallen. I didn't particularly mind as I made friends quickly in the alliance, particularly the various CEOs and directors. In fact the alliance leaders K1rth and Chapters, and the corp CEOs Klothos and Red Armageddon became my best friends in EVE.

I have to say that my time in Brothers Grim was fantastic, the laid back atmosphere and the frequent ensured that I would stick with them for a long time. This alliance was not without its drama however, as one of the member corps recruited someone that would go on to steal from the alliance (not much at all but still pretty disappointing). We all accepted it and marked it down as a one off, but later another issue would plague us.

At time I also got into a fight with Mr. Ka Jolo at an asteroid belt. He was piloting a thorax and I was in my maller. It was a close fight but he managed to escape (blasted ecm drones). He offered me a place in his corp, but I declined as I was already spoken for.

We were currently at war with a number of corporations, having minor skirmishes here and there. We suffered a couple of losses as that was to be expected but on the whole we were doing quite well. Some people were not happy however, one or two reports came by my way about a pilot who had recently joined and had FC'd and lost on two occasions (Poor use of spies, bad primary calling). Then about a week later he had organised another fleet consisting of about 15 people. Quite frankly this fleet got its arse handed to it by a gang of 4 led by Nexa Necis i believe. I wasn't there on the operation, but Red, Klothos, and many others were rightfully peeved. I was asked to talk to the pilot who led the op, so i opened up a convo an simply asked what happened. I was met with hostility but i kept calm and asked him to give his side of the story. He gave it, but blamed the other 14 people for being crap (they weren't as I've flown with them before). I told him he needs to calm down and that I would offer him a chance to prove he had what it takes to FC. I offered him leadership of a wing in the fleet op i had organised for the weekend. I was then met with such a torrent of curses and 'who do you think you are' that I snapped and told him how pathetic he was blaming others for him mistakes and having this kind of attitude. The others were told about the convo and all of them called for the pilot to be expelled. (Although I had no roles in my corp, I was considered to be one of the alliance's leaders after running several successful ops and moving the alliance to a more prosperous area of lowsec.)

This is where things took a slight turn for the worse, but in no way could we have predicted it. We expected the player to be dropped from the corp. However the CEO pulled his entire corp from the alliance, saying that we were better off without them as they were the cause of several incidents. This was mainly due to their lax recruitment policies but that also made them the largest corp in the alliance. We lost a huge number of members that day, and it weakened us substantially. After we were decced further by another merc corp we felt the strain and had to organise a cease fire. I offered to try and convince the merc corp to drop the dec, and permission was granted. I had some dirt on this particular corp (minor dirt but it could still damage their reputation, and that's bad news for a merc corp). Their CEO said they 'didn't care' 'we're not currently taking contracts at the moment anyway' and other stuff. I thought that I had failed and left convo disappointed. The next day the dec was quietly dropped.

The alliance still continued to deteriorate while I went away on holiday. When I returned K1rth, Chapters, Red and I decided to start empire wars. So a new corp was formed and the alliance was left in capable hands. I joined the fight a week later as I had to grind my sec back up (a very long and ponderous affair. I made a little money but most of that was spent on replenishing my crystals and replacing a couple of ships that got ganked).

We had three simultaneous decs running, but in the three weeks I spent in high sec all i got was a bestower and a couple of noob ship kills. This was primarily due to K1rth putting the fear of God into the corp. He engaged 13 of them solo, killed an ishtar and a few others, and still managed to jump to safety. After that point they rarely undocked. I spent most of my time solo camping anywhere up to 7 people and they still didn't undock. I managed to get a few fights with the friendly residents of Amarr, which was quite fun. That was until someone interfered with a 1vs1 that i was having. I lost a maller, but i was so peeved I came back out in a harbinger and chased the bugger to a belt and swiftly dispatched her brutix. I can assure you she didn't interfere again. My conclusion? High sec deccing is ridiculously boring, don't do it.

Giving my farewell to the lads I went back to lowsec to kill something. I also sent a mail to Ka Jolo asking if his offer of a place in his corp was still open. He confirmed that and asked me to post an application on the Tuskers forums. I liked the requirements and questions, quite effective when your trying to get the general attitude of the recruit and his talents. An idea that I will steal when I form a corp of my own.

The Tuskers at this point was still quite young and had about 10 members. I quickly found my place in the corp, but being pretty much the only UK player at the time, I still soloed a lot. Not to say there wasn't any roams, far from it. I have to say that the Tuskers was the most organised corp i have ever been in, and their forums are top notch when organising operations. I have had the pleasure of being on a couple of these including Wensley's. I made many friends in my time in The Tuskers and had plenty of exciting times. I have never in my time as a Tusker come across a bad pilot and everyone had been very polite and considerate (this also meant i refrained from telling my dirty stories and jokes). As i mentioned in Part 1, over Christmas and January I've not been an active player, only really getting on to set my training. This hasn't been entirely fair to Ka Jolo as he has been very patient about my absence, but as I return to EVE I fear it is my time to leave the Tuskers. I will be staying in the Tuskers until the end of February at which point I shall give my final farewell.

It is time for a fresh start in more than one place. My old friends Klothos and K1rth have decided to start up a new alliance (Chapters and Red are as far as I know undecided). I have been given the opportunity to lead my own corp though I still haven't entirely decided on its focus (privateering more than likely) I feel that we have the potential to be quite successful. We have also decided to move to an area of lowsec that none of us have ever been to before. I hope to use all that i have learned from Ka Jolo about running a corp, and also to recruit only those who are as reckless as I am to make a force to be reckoned with.

So with my lateness in turning over a new leaf for 2009, I can only hope for good times ahead, and with me for the first time leading a corp you'd better watch this space......

Saturday, 24 January 2009

Retrospective pt.3

Now we move on to more recent events. I continued practicing solo piracy with the maller for some time all the while searching for a corp. Eventually i got better and better in the use of it, and recognised its potential. Normally a lone maller in a belt would be considered bait, but somehow some people hadn't picked up on this train of though and eagerly warped to me. This was great, all i had to was sit tight and wait for people to come to me. Although of course i kept an eye on my scanner and sat at about 50km from the warp in point just incase something came along that i couldn't handle. I caught the occasional cruiser, or cocky frigate who thought my guns wouldn't be able to track (those who went on to bitch and call me everything under the sun for fitting small guns on a cruiser hull). Now my general rule of thumb for my ship setups is: If you cant fit a full rack of Heavy pulses on your ship, drop down to medium pulse lasers (small). That is unless your ship has a bonus to medium size weapons.

Soon enough my reputation as the noob who flies mallers, turned to the guy who flies mallers. This was a big step up for me as you can imagine. Usually I kept away from certain other cruisers, rupture and arbitrator when flown by skilled pilots mostly, then something changed in my mind set. It was no longer what ships I could take, but rather how to go about killing ships i shouldn't be able to take. This largely revolved around dictating range, but still remaining within web range. Usually this would seem silly, but through experience I've learned that my 2 webs trump my opponents single web, shocking I know. So when fighting ships such as the thorax, I'd load my scorches and keep him at 8/9km. With luck hes only carrying the close range ammo and cant hit me, but even if he had more forethought he would still lose a sizable chunk of dps. When you need to chew through 12k base armour and 70+ resists you need all the damage you can get. When I fight missile ships or ships that have range as good as mine I go for conflags or amarr multifrequencies, whatever is available in that area. This gives me an extra 50 dps or so, which brings me to my top dps of around 200, which is not too shabby for a ship with small guns.

The other method of killing ships that i shouldn't be able to is object usage. Now this means using stations and gates, asteroids, and even other ships to break the orbit arc of fast ships. If you do it right it can result in two things. Firstly, the target bounces away from you, resulting in the deactivation of a scrambler (range too high). Secondly he bounces towards you and your meaty paws. I have caught several crows and other kiting ships with this method. The best method at stations I've found is to sit under the stations centre. This way, unless the target has managed to come at you parallel to the stations underside, he cannot orbit you.

I've come to realise the proficiency the maller of doom stakes out small, and by small I mean frigate sized, ships. Small close range ships do not have a chance of taking me on solo, the only ship that could possibly do it is an ishkur with a good active tank, but even then that's pushing it. The first time i realised this was on one of my many solo roams. Sitting at a planet i began to scan 3 groups of asteroid belts looking for a target. Minutes later i spotted a taranis and a celestis. I managed to get the celestis to a belt, but the taranis appeared to be at a safespot. Hitting the warp button i patiently waited as my ship ponderously aligned (10-12 second align pre QR). When i finally had arrived at the belt the taranis was there less than a single km away from me, and the celestis about 30km away. Evidently the taranis had tried to catch it also. Both me and the taranis locked each other as we both made better targets. He got the lock first, and I, having never fought a taranis before, was surprised at the damage he was doing. None the the less it wasn't enough, as when i finally got my lock i began to do heavy damage to his shield. A new icon appeared on my overview made me lose faith. I thought 'I've had it hes brought a gang along'. Yet to my surprise no more icons appeared, just a lone vengeance who promptly began to aggress me. The celestis with the arrival of the vengeance thought it would be a good idea to stick around and help them kill me. I wasn't entirely worried about the celestis as it only occasionally sent a light missile my way (although rather stupidly it decided to come within disruptor range in order to launch that occasional missile. By this point I was at 70% armour, and the taranis was in structure. A few seconds later the taranis popped and i switched my modules onto the vengeance. Now that the chief damage dealer was a smoldering wreck I felt confident. The vengeance did very little damage but had a fairly good tank, him lasting many times longer than his friend. But as his tank cracked the pair acknowledged their defeat with a gf in local. The vengeance popped, and i moved into collect my loot. A missile collision alerted me to the fact that the celestis had still not bolted, so I gleefully tackled him and dispatched him, not surprised to see the usual lolfit of a new pilot. But i was happy, I got some t2 modules, enough to cover my ship repair costs (forgot to mention the extortionate repair costs i dish out after challenging fights, and my laziness not to sit outside with a repper instead.)

Those sort of engagements no longer surprise me as they once did, as i still dispatch frigate gangs regularly. Other examples include:

Maller vs ares + jaguar + enyo - where i killed the two AF's and survived.

Maller vs FW gang ( 3 kestrels, caracal, merlin, rifter) - where i killed 2 kestrels the merlin and rifter before managing to warp off.

Maller vs 2 taranis + kitsune + jaguar - killed all but a taranis (i did have help from Grohal who acted as a decoy for the kitsune)

So now that i rarely get the same kick from these fights I often plunge myself into stupid situations, sometimes winning sometimes losing, but having fun no matter the outcome. Although I'd like to think it was all skill on my part, sometimes my opponents are just not thinking straight or having a bad day. This was proven by my first ever hac kill while piloting my maller, where a nanozealot pilot aggressed me as i came through a gate despite being well within web range. Despite the fact i really didn't want to fight i had little choice as he had me pointed. I applied my webs and approached him slowly while firing my guns. He was getting away from me but at the rate of about 5 m/s. He soon popped, allowing me to get my hands on some juicy loot. Now I have to give props to the fellow, because instead of whining or ignoring my gf in local, he congratulated me on a good kill and was really nice. Though I think I would have enjoyed the kill more if he was a smacktard, those are always the best.

Now normally if someone else got a kill like that they would think of it as a one off to treasure forever. Not me. It only fueled my ego, and i began to throw myself into even stupider situations. Most of the time it didn't pay off and my wallet suffered from it. Though over time my arrogance faded, as i realised i wasn't as good as i though I was. I got schooled once in a blue moon, including losing a zealot to an enyo. Now I wasn't particularly ashamed by that loss, granted it was my fault for forgetting FW gates are warp to 0 despite abusing that fact in the past, but all the credit his to go to the enyo pilot for not bolting at the sight of me. Now all this talk of arrogance fading and being schooled may make you think I'm quite the hesitant now, but let me assure you that that is not the case. I am still very brave, or stupid, and my fellow Tuskers can attest to my recklessness. Ronan still talks of me warping in on a gang consisting of a brutix, myrm, and ishtar and dying but with an ishtar kill to show for it.

I warned you in part 1 there was going to be some e-peen waving didn't I? Those fights would have made a great video, too bad i keep forgetting to bloody raps my fights! To resolve this i have sellotaped an A4 sheet of paper to my desk reminding me to do it.

Well I think that's enough for part 3. In part 4 ill talk about more recent events including my time as a member of Brothers Grim, of the Tuskers, and my experience and opinion about high sec wars.

Friday, 23 January 2009

Retrospective. pt2.

My last post finished with me telling you that in the opening stages of my career I was poor, lonely, and hated. Not the most appealing of traits for anyone. So how did i got about resolving this? Well i began by creating a Caldari alt to run some missions when I'm all out of isk. After the slow burning hurdle of level 1 missions, I moved onto level 2's and 3's where I made sufficient isk to keep Kor anon in business. I had to log on to my alt on occasion, but usually not for longer than an hour or so. The trouble is with having an alt on the same account is that it steals some training time away from your main. So Kor anon lost a month or so of training to get my alt on its feet. Nowadays I rarely use my alt, as I tend to stick with cheap ships. As such my alt has not advanced further than low grade level 3's but I still keep him around, just incase.

The other problem that needed to be resolved was the fact I was still in my starter corp. So over the next few months I jumped from corp to corp, even trying out 0.0 again. I tended to apply for local pirate corps at this time. I made a few acquaintances, but usually pissed off the CEOs for not sticking around for longer than a few weeks at most. Corp and alliance drama really did not appeal to me, and to be perfectly honest I didn't like them ordering me around. I got fed up with the constant do this, do that, be on at this time crap. Though through experience I have come to realise those kind of corps are the oddity. Recently had the good luck to be in corps who are not extremely serious when it comes to a game, and where generally real life is considered to be more important than EVE (who would have thought?).

So with the first failed experiment of trying to find a decent corp to stick with, I resorted to once again solo pirating in a noob corp. However this was actually quite the blessing as it gave me time to learn the ins and outs of every ship I could fly, what I could take down, how to survive in lowsec with a bad standing (-5.0 and below). I occasionally got the odd ransom here and there, usually when I was thinking well enough to deactivate my guns. I usually didn't get much, but every little helps.

So I spent more time in the piracy business, flying better ships, getting tech 2 gear for my ships, the usual routine. When I had enough isk and felt confident of my abilities I decided to take the next step, cruisers. Now you might be thinking 'A few months before he gets into cruisers!?' Yeah that's about right I think. Being poor all the time made me realise that to get into a ship before you are ready is a bad financial move. So I waited until all my gear was tech 2 and all my relevant skills were at 4 or 5.

Now it came to the dilemma of picking a ship:

Arbitrator - Generally regarded as the best Amarr cruiser. However it is a drone boat, and as of yet I still hadn't put a single skillpoint into drones (even today I can only use EWAR drones). So unfortunately this was not for me.

Augoror - No, just no.

Omen - I think the omen is best used in gangs where it can act as a bit of support, like a weaker zealot. Soloing in an omen is unfeasible, as it lacks any significant damage and has no tank. There was the possibility of nanoing it before the nerf, but then again my navigation skills were pathetic.

Maller - And thus my soulmate was found. This was the only ship left, and wasn't held in high regard at the time nor at the present. It was generally used as a mission boat because of its tank, but it could not lay down any significant dps.

So with my choice pretty much made for me I bought my first maller. I had yet to work out a setup, so I tried all sorts of fittings (sensible ones mind). A 1600mm rolled tungsten plate was almost a given, and was the essential module for all of my test fittings. I experimented quite a bit, debating the merits of autocannons over lasers and vice versa, or whether or not to go for a MWD or AB or nothing. I lost plenty of ships, gained local recognition as the idiot who flies mallers (even called a noob by those who I managed to kill, lol what?). Then one fateful day while messing around at my college library, I stumbled across a maller thread on the eve-o forums. This piqued my interest, so i opened it up and had a look at all the wonderful suggestions. That was until I laid eyes upon the Dura-maller. When i first looked at it, I thought 'No way. Two 1600mm plates?' Yet I plugged it into EFT and lo and behold it fitted. Shocked and somewhat turned on by the principle of unbelievable stamina, I immediately went about working to find an effective setup that encompassed the dual plates. So I went back to the drawing board and after about a week I found the perfect setup for me.

Thus the maller of doom was born, and those who found themselves killed by my hand no longer laughed, they cried.

End of part 2.

Thursday, 22 January 2009

Blogs. Serious business. Retrospective Pt .1

Hello and welcome to my first blog, and about internet spaceships no less. I have been playing EVE since late 2007, so i still consider myself to be a fairly young player. However in the year and a bit that I have been playing I have made enemies, good freinds, had plenty of stupid moments, and plenty of great fights. I have very much been a casual player at this point due to the usual troubles of a teenage lad, exams, trying to find a job, and other engaging activities. Though with the advent of financial stability (including a new job and plans to go to university), my daily schedule has become more routine and enables me to have more time making carebears cry. I plan to engage myself in my favorite hobby and all the side projects that could result from it, including this blog and getting round to make some decent bloody videos.

As I've not been playing EVE that much for the past month or so, I thought I'd begin with some general e-peen waving, and a little back story. To say I began playing eve at the end of 07, is actually a lie. I played with another account on and off for about 6 months before that. A gallente character. Or more precisely a badly skilled lulworthy gallente character. I made the mistake that many new players made, and indeed continue to make, by trying to fly every ship I can afford, without relevant support skills, bad fits, etc. Suffice to say that character got biomassed after intense frustration with 0.0 fleet warfare (still hate 0.0 to this day).

I then decided to make an entirely new account and start over. Thus Kor anon was born. Despite being warned about the general crappyness of Amarr at the time, I went ahead anyway because Amarr ships are quite sexy looking. I also promised to myself that i would not make the same mistakes again. Thanks to some helpful forum-goers i got the basic skill list that every new player should have. Over the net few months I absolutely refused to move up in ship class until i had pretty maxed out the skills i needed. This helped me when it came to getting into fights, as despite being a fairly new player my skills were in all the right places.

Two months in i still had not found my place in New Eden. I had tried 0.0, high sec and missioning was frustratingly boring. Do what else was there? Piracy of course. I still recall my first kill. I had warped in on an incursus accidentally, but stuck around to have some fun. The pilot was quite a bit older than me, having an almost full t2 fit, while I was stuck in my t1 autocannon punisher. I approached the target and engaged. For the first 20 seconds of the fight it seemed as if the other player was afk, or perhaps too suprised for any intelligent thought. When he finally got round to attacking back I took some hefty damage. My single armour rep was tanking some of the damage but my armour was gradually getting lower and lower. However it was too little too late as the incursus popped casting shrapnel all over the place. Minutes later, after i had stopped shaking uncontrolably i scooped the t2 goodies that dropped and docked up. The loot worth wasnt much maybe 1.5M tops, but it was enough to buy a couple more ships.

Saying that i was hooked from then on would be a fallacy, as it was only until a few fights later that I had found my destiny (you can almost smell the cheese). By this time i had grown reasonably proficient with the onboard scanner. I picked up a kestrel, two coercers, and a comorant at a belt. There was no other people in the system but us 5, so i checked their info. All were pretty young, two were a week old, the other three were only a little bit older than me. After mulling it over for a short while I thought 'what the hell'. It had been a long day without any kills and I wanted to have at least some fun before I logged off for the night. Warping in i found that the two coercers were mining about 30km away from me, and it appeared that the others (kestrel 5km from me, and comorant 40km from me) were on guard duty. Activating my afterburner I locked, scrambled, and swiftly dispatched the kestrel, only taking a bit of shield damage. I then moved after the coercers, who still hadn't moved. The comorant however had noticed his freinds demise and wasn't entirely happy, he began to smack in local but i was too far into bloodletting mode to give a toss. I finally caught up to the coercers and began attacking one, bringing his shield and armour down pretty quickly. By this time the other coercer and the comorant were in weapons range and doing significant damage. When the first coercer popped I decided now was the time to bolt and run, and remarkably due to the fact I was unpointed, I got away deep into structure. However I was not done yet, I wanted more death, and more pretty explosions. Keeping an eye on the scanner I waited for my armour to rep, and for my capacitor to charge a bit. The guys were still at the belt according to the scanner, though I could of guessed that from the various 'lol coward' and 'comeback pussy' in local. A minute later when I felt confident I warped back in. I immediately locked the second coercer who had moved in to collect the kestrel loot, but it seemed he was already in the process of warping and got out. The comorant had more balls and began attacking me as i burned towards him. His bonus to optimal being a right pain in the backside. But by the time i got to him he had failed to do enough damage to worry me. I finally got within shooting distance, and began to do some damage. By the time the comorant was at 60% armour his friend warped back on top of us, and began attacking me. Not long after, the comorant popped and I was able to turn my guns on the coercer. another minute later we was both into structure despite the fact half his gun ports were occupied by mining lasers. I had run out of cap too so there was little chance of repair, yet as I hit 10% structure my fourth adversary was finally destroyed. If you were in my house at the time, you would have been deafened by the screams of joy, and driven insane by the sexy dance I performed for myself infront of my PC.

Kor anon, the pirate had a definate ring to it at the time and for the next few months I solo pirated in my punisher and later my retribution. However it was also a lonely time for me as I was corp-less, had little isk, and was hated by the carebears and do-gooders that lived around my local hunting ground.

End of Part 1.