Class 4 versus class 2 w-space anomalies

30th December 2010 – 5.20 pm

Exploring today easily uncovers three wormholes in our home system, all by looking in the bookmark container. Glorious leader Fin has been scanning and found the wormholes, and continued through our static connection. I copy the bookmarks to my nav-comp and zoom off in a different direction, picking one of the two class 2 w-space systems connecting in to our home system to explore. The system number for this first C2 looks suspicously familiar. Even though it could simply be the pattern of J123450 making me think I've been here before, it turns out I actually have, twice, and the last time was only two weeks ago. I check that my notes are current and find all four towers in the system where I left them. And there's only one ship in the system, the Vexor Navy Issue cruiser sitting unpiloted at one of the towers.

Scanning the class 2 system is quick, holding only five anomalies and four signatures, one being the wormhole homewards. I resolve the second static wormhole—an exit to high-sec empire space that is at the end of its lifetime—a magnetometric site, and a K162 wormhole coming from another C2. I may as well keep up my momentum and jump through the K162, finding this next system to have more and pointier ships visible on my directional scanner. The Broadsword heavy interdictor, Typhoon battleship and others look fairly threatening, but less so once found unpiloted inside the shields of the local tower. This system is inactive at the moment too. Scanning reveals one anomaly, two mining sites, and an exit to empire space that leads to a rather uninteresting low-sec system.

Fin, meanwhile, has gone the other way and investigated the second class 2 system connecting in to our home C4, finding more space but just as little activity. I go to join Fin, following her exhaust to let me bookmark an exit to high-sec empire space and a K162 from a class 4 system. I check the destination system of the exit as Fin explores the C4 and, as she reports nothing of much interest in the C4, I make a few hops to pick up the skill book for the new Noctis salvaging ship, not so much jumping on the bandwagon as desperately running behind it trying to keep up. A destroyer has worked well for long enough that although the Noctis specifications look impressive I'm not convinced it will make that much difference. But at least it will give me an excuse to buy a new ship.

There are half-a-dozen w-space systems in our constellation today, and they are all as quiet as a Xepheillion space mouse that's been thrown out of an airlock in to the near-total vacuum of the void. Which makes it time to shoot some Sleepers! And we have some options, the class 4 w-space system beyond one of the class 2 systems seeming like the most profitable option. The C4 also holds a magnetar phenomenon, increasing damage inflicted, which should make combat quicker. The only impediment to our combat is that the wormhole connecting us to the C2 is now reaching the end of its natural lifetime. But as the connection was healthy only a short while ago we should have a buffer of a few hours before being in danger of getting isolated, and we both won't take that long and have bookmarks to guide us through the C2's exit to high-sec should the worst happen.

Fin and I swap our scanning boats for Tengu strategic cruisers. I even have my second Tech II weapons, skill training now progressing on heavy assault missile specialisation and the advanced launchers fitted and ready on my ship. Entering combat, I am sure it is the magnetar phenomenon helping more and not my extra 2% rate of fire, but whatever it is the Sleepers really are being destroyed a lot more quickly than normal. We clear two frontier barracks anomalies rapidly and return home to swap to salvaging ships to clear up behind ourselves. No Noctis salvagers yet, but probably soon. And I am beginning to think the new ship will be worth it, at least in some situations, as the magnetar reduces targeting range, our destroyers only reaching out to a little over thirty kilometres. The reduced targeting range may slow us down a little but not by much, and we bring home about two hundred and twenty million ISK in loot and salvage.

The evening isn't quite over yet, and we have more anomalies to clear in the two class 2 w-space system directly connecting to us. We modify our configuration to one Tengu and one salvager, thinking that the strategic cruiser can blitz through the Sleepers in low-class w-space as quickly as the salvager behind can sweep, but this thought is soon proven erroneous. The Sleepers are quite hardy in general, and even guardians of C2 systems take a bit of shooting to defeat. A standard two Tengu fleet is adopted and we both burn through four more anomalies together. But the combat isn't as quick as we'd like, and the loot brought home is really quite poor considering the time investment, recovering a little over seventy million ISK.

It feels rather thankless to return with so little gain, and I don't think we'll be rushing in to any more class 2 systems to shoot Sleepers. We should stick to class 3 and 4 w-space systems for a good profit in our Tengus. At least we know now, and can make better use of our time and resources in the future. And we still come away with some profit from the C2 anomalies, so it wasn't time wasted. But, for now, it is time to get some sleep.

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