Sweeping through Sleeper sites

11th October 2012 – 5.41 pm

'Which planet can I scan?'


Planet Penny? What have I missed? But Fin is just welcoming me as I come on-line and not answering Aii's question. 'Your slow-scanning minions have a mostly boring class 3 w-space system, which has gas and an exit to a low-sec faction warfare system.' That does sound boring. I perform a check of the home system, to prevent surprises, and see nothing unexpected. Well, nothing except... 'and someone has cleared our anomalies'. Yes, yes they have. So what's left to do? 'Everything but scan.' Would it be okay if I scanned the low-sec system? 'Yes.' Okay then.

I use corporate bookmarks to guide me to our static wormhole, and jumping to the neighbouring C3 has a tower and Chimera on my directional scanner. The carrier is unpiloted, I am assured, and as the tower has been noted and bookmarked I don't bother swinging past it and instead head directly to the exit to low-sec. I leave w-space, launch probes in a rather uninteresting system, and recall them again when all I find is a radar and magnetometric site each. I don't think much is going to happen tonight, so when Fin asks 'are you okay to run the C3 anomalies?' it seems like our best option. Bagsy the Golem!

Aii helpfully points out that the glowing ball of redness in the system is a Wolf-Rayet phenomenon. It's easily missed when you see a lot of them, but becomes important if you're going to do more than just scan. 'Shield resists are 22% weaker in Wolf-Rayet systems', he says. Yep, and we like the challenge. We pretty much only shoot Sleepers in these C3s nowadays. We head home, swap scanning boats for shield-tanked Sleeper boats, and return to C3a to enter the first anomaly.

We lose Aii before we even start, which turns out not to be ideal, with Fin in a remote-repair Tengu strategic cruiser and me in a locally boosted Golem marauder. We survive for a whole one wave before having to warp out and wait for our third pilot to return. Or we could swap boats. I volunteer to get the other Tengu, but Fin decides instead to refit her Tengu to add a local booster to the RR module, making us self-sufficient again.

The first anomaly is cleared with little drama, although space dust should be banned from whizzing down the middle of my screen in a vivid reconstruction of a hostile ship dropping out of warp. I am also still not entirely fond of the uninventory, and its irritating handling of wrecks. An opened wreck is automatically closed when looted, but as the uninventory opens everything within range whenever it is accessed I end up with my ship's hold open after every time I loot a wreck. Every damned time. I don't ask for my hold to be opened, so why open it? And why not close it after looting a wreck, if the hold wasn't open to start with?

We carry on. Aii returns and brings a second Tengu, which speeds up combat rather more significantly than I would assume. I can hardly keep up with calling targets, locking targets, painting targets, shooting targets; targeting wrecks, tractoring wrecks, looting and salvaging wrecks; boosting my shield; updating d-scan; and moving the fleet on. Not scribbling notes during all of this would probably ease the stress a little, I suppose.

The fourth anomaly finally pushes us out of range of the local tower, but no change in the single carrier has been seen the entire time. We clear the fourth and then fifth anomalies without interruption, and in little overall time, so that Fin and Aii warp off in different directions to clear the local ladar sites of Sleepers too. They activated the sites before leaving the C3 the first time, and now a few frigates have turned up. Rather than head home I warp in behind my colleagues and loot and salvage the frigates for the paltry ISK they offer, which probably isn't the best use of a billion-and-a-half ISK ship holding three hundred million ISK in loot. But I do it anyway.

The shooting of ladar site Sleepers continues in to the home system, where a new pocket of gas holds industrial promise, and I risk the Golem once more by looting and salvaging the wrecks. Finally, I return to our tower and drop off the loot, stowing the marauder to swap back for my cloaky Loki strategic cruiser. 'Aii, do you think we should put the puppet in a speedy battlecruiser with the mining link?' Uh-oh, that sounds suspiciously like rock chomping is about to happen. I feign a headache and warp to a corner of the home system, where after a productive night of Sleeper combat I go off-line.

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