Piloting-by a podding

15th October 2009 – 5.54 pm

The convenient cluster of Lai Dai agents is quite close to low-sec space. They are not so close to low-sec that I am unlikely to be able to pick up an encounter mission, rejecting anything that will take my PvE ship to hostile space, but courier missions run the occasional risk of heading through a low-sec system to the high-sec island beyond. In particular, storyline missions, with their significant rewards, seem designed to make you risk entering low-sec.

My Lai Dai agent wants me to make a delivery to low-sec. It doesn't sound like much but I always keep my wits about myself, as losing a ship, or even a clone, is never much fun when it could easily have been avoided. Piloting the Crane relieves much of my anxiety, but I don't want to do anything stupid. On a courier mission, in a blockade runner, my plan is generally to blast through the systems as quickly as possible. Scanning is for when I'm piloting more vulnerable ships and can be terminally stopped on the other side of a gate.

I make the jump in to low-sec and align to the target station, punching the MWD and cloak in quick succession, moving away from the gate towards my destination quickly before disappearing from scanners a moment later. But I don't warp, something has caught my eye as I scan the local area. Not only is there a naked pod sitting on the gate but also a ship, decorated with a red skull on my overview. I cannot help but stare, hopefully safe in my cloaked state, as the inevitable happens. The pirate ship opens fire and the pod disintegrates, blasting the clone in to the vacuum of space, where it quickly becomes a frozen corpse.

What was once a capsuleer no doubt wakes up in a clone vat in a system somewhere, oblivious to the hunk of frozen meat he was in moments before, and I can't help but reflect on the advances in technology. Many of us have been podded before, me included, yet here we are, still in space, still risking it all to become rich, famous or notorious. How soon we forget the panic and pain of our pod bursting open. Perhaps the inevitability of a pod's destruction triggers an injection of stimulants to surge through our bodies so that we experience euphoria during our last moments. Or maybe it is more morbid, and the structural disintegration of the pod severs all life support catastrophically, ensuring the transport of consciousness to our new clone as quickly as possible.

I try not to dwell on the grisly execution I have just witnessed, as it's best not to. It is but a minor event in a much larger galaxy. The Caldari guns firing on the pirate causes him to warp away, leaving nothing but my Crane and floating wreckage around the gate. I take my cue, disengaging the cloak and hitting warp quickly, reaching my destination to complete the mission.

  1. 7 Responses to “Piloting-by a podding”

  2. are you not able to warp cloaked?

    By Akura Kawanaka on Oct 16, 2009

  3. My flight computer keeps telling me I can't. I expect I need some fancy-pants upgraded cloaking device, which inevitably means more skill training, and I am so close to piloting a Damnation.

    And warping cloaked probably means I can't enjoy the sight of Tigress II sweeping majestically across the void.

    By pjharvey on Oct 16, 2009

  4. ahh - there you go :-) beauty > security always :-P

    By Akura Kawanaka on Oct 16, 2009

  5. Go get the Covert Cloaking device.

    Now. Cloaking 4. :)

    I'll wait.

    By Kename Fin on Oct 16, 2009

  6. Cloaking IV?! I don't have the patience for a level IV skill.

    In other news, just Amarr Cruiser V to go for the Damnation!

    By pjharvey on Oct 17, 2009

  7. you've been flying a crane through lowsec without a covops cloak? silly silly man...

    By Cyberin on Oct 26, 2009

  8. Who would want to shoot a Crane anyway? Well, apart from jealous Gallenteans, I suppose.

    By pjharvey on Oct 27, 2009

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