Sleepers reject salvation

12th July 2010 – 7.21 pm

The Sleepers are in trouble. Back at the tower, lacking a full fleet, a couple of colleagues are preparing to take their strategic cruisers out to some anomalies in our neighbouring C4. I volunteer to salvage and am encouraged to provide more support by taking my Damnation command ship refitted as a salvager, or the 'Salvation'. The Salvation can provide shield and armour warfare links to boost the effectiveness of the Tengu and Proteus strategic cruisers, and I can do this outside of the combat anomaly, letting me stay out of immediate danger. It sounds like a good plan and we fly out and jump to our neighbouring system.

I lurk around the wormhole, warfare links active, as my colleagues engage the Sleepers, but after a while I am invited to join the fun. I can add a couple of launchers' worth of DPS to the fight whilst clearing up the wrecks with my salvager II modules. Sleepers really don't like my Salvation. I get a lot of attention quickly and, without any local or remote armour repairs, find my ship rapidly being blown apart. I start to warp out to save myself but am delayed a little longer than I find comfortable as the Sleeper frigates remove their webs from me one by one, each incremental change of my maximum velocity delaying my entrance to warp a little longer. At least there are no Sleepers tackling me and I am able to return to lurk on the wormhole, with an unhealthy 17% armour remaining.

I return home to swap the Damnation for a dedicated salvaging ship. I don't relish the idea of being ambushed in my most beautiful ship when it is in a poor state of repair. The strategic cruisers are able to clear the site of Sleepers without me and I warp in only when it is time to salvage and loot the wrecks. This is my first opportunity to use my new Cormorant destroyer fitted with Tech II salvager modules and what a joy it is! Salvaging has never been smoother, even if the wrecks are scattered over a couple of hundred kilometres.

My colleagues head off to pick a fight with Sleepers in another anomaly. They suggest that maybe my Drake battlecruiser's notorious passive tank could withstand more of the Sleeper onslaught whilst adding to the overall damage output. I am uncertain of the ship's survivability in a class 4 anomaly when relying only on its own shield buffer, if only because I've already shown the Drake has to warp out of a class 1 anomaly occasionally. I am willing to give it a go, though, and spend a few minutes warping in and out of the anomaly to alternately throw missiles at Sleepers and recharge my shields.

It is curious to see that we have trouble breaking a Sleeper battleship's tank, with remote repair coming from other Sleeper ships, but when my Drake warps out to recharge its ailing shields the two strategic cruisers by themselves are able to destroy the battleship. The apparently changing level of logistics the Sleepers deploy, depending on the number of attackers present, suggests that Sleeper combat is rather more dynamic than we have suspected so far.

I stay out of the second anomaly until the battleships are gone, warping back to enjoy crushing the remaining Sleeper cruisers. After the site is clear I swap back to my destroyer and sweep through the wrecks looting and salvaging. My combat ships may not be adequate for unsupported C4 anomalies, and I may well need to slip myself in to a strategic cruiser too, but I am always ready to help with salvaging. All the loot is safely recovered and returned to our tower, and I get almost seventy million ISK as my share of the profits. Now I sleep, my pillow stuffed with comfortable iskies.

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