Testing tower defences

21st December 2009 – 5.41 pm

An exit wormhole collapses behind our engineers. They have ventured back to New Eden to get fuel for our tower. It's not a problem, our scanner man jumps in to his Cheetah covert operations boat to find a new wormhole through which the refuellers can return. It doesn't take our expert much time to reconnoitre the connecting w-space system, finding a corporation's tower, a Manticore, and a mining Hulk. The new exit back to known space is also found and leads to high-sec, reducing the refuelling run to a matter of logistics.

'Shall I tell him it's okay to keep mining?' Our scanner doesn't want to spook the pilot of the Hulk, as we're only interested in using the neighbouring system as a thoroughfare. Because our Cheetah may have been spotted, and the scan probes used certainly must have been if the miner is paying enough attention, it's better to open peaceful negotiations than leave the locals no option but to adopt a more aggressive posture. Of course, they don't have to believe our stated intentions, and pointing out that haulers will be passing through soon could have negative consequences for us, but as hiding is much easier in w-space than elsewhere, being open at least makes us look trustworthy.

It all becomes moot soon enough. 'I just did something dumb.' We tend to do dumb things fairly often, so more clarification is requested. 'Dumb enough to rival Riyu. I warped to their tower, but wasn't cloaked.' Okay, yes, that's not the smartest manoeuvre, as tower defences tend to be quite powerful and cov-ops ships quite flimsy.

'Looking on the positive side', I point out, 'at least the Hulk pilot probably now realises it's safe to keep mining.' It would be quite a ruse to throw an expensive ship at a tower as a sacrificial lure just to snare an exhumer. Our inexperience is revealed once again, although we grow stronger with each mistake. Today we learn to ensure the cloaking device is engaged before getting in range of a hostile POS.

The engineer's pod returns unscathed to our system and tower, promptly leaving again to go shopping in high-sec. At least he finds the exit before exploding. Unfortunately, he makes the mistake of asking too soon to the loss of his ship for a name he can give to his new Cheetah. Suggestions of 'Cloak plz', 'POS Fodder', and 'Structurally Unsound' are not likely to be announced when the bottle of champagne smashes across the ship's bow, however appropriate they may seem.

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