Exploring a quiet neighbourhood

4th May 2010 – 5.41 pm

A can of BMs appeals to the explorer in me. It's true that my scanning skills have improved, partly through experience and partly because of better equipment, and part of the thrill in exploring is finding the route in the first place, but when the wormholes connecting systems are already mapped it means I can pay more attention to everything else. In today's instance, when I jump through to the neighbouring system, in a Buzzard for potential scanning of targets, I am quick to note that we have been in this system before. Our previous visit wasn't just passing through either, we ambush and pop five Covetors and an Iteron for kicks.

Only a lone Drake sits manned at the occupied system's tower. There are no signs of mining barges here, or elsewhere in the system. All is quiet. It's time to scan and bookmark a gravimetric site or two, hoping for later piracy. But there is nothing here, just an anomaly and two more wormholes. Perhaps the miners are active in another system, but warping to and jumping through the next wormhole presents another system devoid of ships. I look to bookmark a few sites anyway before moving on again. More than a dozen returned signatures makes me think about only looking for wormholes and gravimetric sites, and resolving a wormhole on my first hit is an even better result. Maybe I'll find new targets in a different system.

The first wormhole I find is a K162 coming from null-sec empire space. A second wormhole is also a K162, this one coming from low-sec space. The third wormhole is the system's static, and this one I jump through. There is a tower visible on the directional scanner, but without a force field I can't say that the system is occupied. I find the tower anyway and am amused that it belongs to the corporation Lost in Space. Scanning finds me a static low-sec exit, which is reaching the end of its life, and a K162 coming from w-space. I head further in to w-space, where plenty of ships are pinged back on d-scan. Luckily, all but a Bustard transport ship are sitting quietly in one tower, the Bustard in a second around the same planet. I won't scan here, but instead back-track a couple of systems to jump through a previous K162. On the way back, I notice one of the connections is now EOL, so it's good I didn't continue onwards.

On my way to the K162 leading to w-space I pop through the null-sec exit to get another red dot of exploration on my star map, and then I'm back in w-space. The other system has a tower but no ships and no activity, and I am now informed that the wormhole leading out of our home's neighbouring system is now reaching the end of its life. I head back. All but our own static connection are now effectively EOL, which makes exploration or adventure rather reckless, as well as most of my newly made bookmarks mostly useless. Our neighbours aren't even coming out to play. I take the opportunity to relax at the tower and take a break.

Checking back a bit later, the wormhole coming from the class 5 system is still critically unstable and EOL, which is a bit disappointing as I was hoping that new connections would have opened up. What is interesting is the Bestower transport ship in the system. It looks like someone tried to collapse the connection to the class 5 system earlier but got cautious when the wormhole became critically unstable, and now the Bestower is trying to finish the job. The transport ship is attracting more than just my attention, our scan man is also patiently watching it jump back and forth.

We both know we have no chance of catching the ship on this side of the wormhole, as it can simply jump back, and neither of us want to take the risk of jumping back with it, where we can catch it, lest the connection collapse as intended. What we can do is wait and hope that the capsuleer's calculations are wrong, and he gets stuck on the wrong side when the wormhole finally collapses. Unfortunately for our bloodlust, the wormhole collapses on one of the Bestower's return trips, leaving us circling only empty space. But we were ready. With no more activity reported, I return to our tower to sleep.

Sorry, comments for this entry are closed.