Scanning never ends

3rd June 2011 – 5.03 pm

I was hoping to stay in my Buzzard for a while, and it looks like I will. Pilots coming and going, and a Tengu strategic making a target of itself put me in and out of my covert operations scanning boat, seeing me try to juggle finding wormholes and stalking ships. Now our neighbouring class 3 w-space system is empty of pilots and I can finally scan more thoroughly. There are quite a few signatures in this C3, which could take a while to sort out, but it's resolving four wormholes that makes me feel I'll be out here a while.

Two wormholes lead directly to empire space. There is a K162 coming in from high-sec and the system's static connection exits to low-sec. I get both exit systems first, merely bookmarking the wormhole and noting the region in high-sec, but taking a better look around in low-sec. There are a few pilots in the system and a Tengu visible on my directional scanner. Having nearly missed a shot at a Tengu earlier I think I'll take a moment to see if this strategic cruiser is a valid target, and sitting out in the middle of nowhere suggests it is.

I start a passive scan of the low-sec system to see if the Tengu is in an anomaly, but nothing nearby shows up and I may need to get closer. Manipulating d-scan a bit puts him right on the limit of detection, being almost 14 AU away, and I actually have no idea how he got out there. There are no planets nearby, nor any that may have been used to make such a safe-spot. He could still be in an anomaly, or on a wormhole, so I launch probes, fling them out of the system, and start a more thorough scan for sites.

The Tengu is hidden. He is not in any site, nor near any signature, but maybe that's good. If he's sat in a safe-spot he could be taking a nap and not expecting company to drop on top of him. I start positioning probes around him, knowing that I can't be too accurate from this range, and scan for his ship's location. My first result isn't good, as expected, and I refine my probes' positions, but even after three attempts his ship remains inscrutable to my combat probes. I launch more, suspecting that it won't help, and indeed it doesn't. The pilot knows what he's doing, holed up in a safe-spot in an unscannable ship. I recall my probes and head back to w-space.

I have two more w-space systems to explore here, the C3 also holding a K162 from further class 3 w-space and a random outbound connection to a class 4 system. The K162 holds most promise for activity and I jump through that first. A bunch of ships and combat scanning probes visible on d-scan looks good, if a little overwhelming for just me, and checking my notes lets me find the tower quickly, as my last visit was only three months ago. Only a Tengu is piloted at the tower, the other five ships empty, and I wonder if it is him scanning until the probes disappear and an Anathema cov-ops warps in. I find a distant point where I can launch probes, letting me blanket the system, but knowing that this C3 has a static exit to high-sec I simply bookmark the anomalies for now. The two pilots don't look to be doing anything for the moment, so with more w-space to explore I head back to the first C3 and onwards to the C4.

Only a corpse and wreck of a battleship are on d-scan in the C4, which could be interesting but probably just means those involved have scurried home already. Otherwise, there are no ships and no occupation in the system. I scan, ignoring mostly rocks and gas to resolve a static connection to class 5 w-space. I jump onwards in to clear space within d-scan's range around the K162 in the C5, and I launch probes. The two ships my probes detect in the system are soon found unpiloted inside a tower's force field, and I resolve two wormholes out of the six signatures present. The first leads to a second class 4 system through the system's static connection, the second wormhole being a K162 from more class 5 w-space.

Sticking with my plan to look for activity I head through the K162 first, finding none. The second C5 is unoccupied and empty, and it takes scanning to find what I think is an end to the current route, the static exit to null-sec k-space. But, of course, someone had to open the wormhole leading in to the first C5, and I resolve a second connection coming in from a C2. I am going rather far from home and have spent longer scanning in my Buzzard than I expected, which shows I should be careful what I wish for. I continue through to the C2, which is a tiny unoccupied system and must have another K162 lurking somewhere. Scanning finds the second static wormhole, another null-sec exit, and the K162 I am looking for, leading to a second C2.

I'm close to my limit for scanning now. I merely poke my nose through to the second C2 to look for activity, and even though a Tengu seems to be sitting at a local tower I ignore it as being too far from home and simply turn my ship around. I still have another branch of the constellation to investigate, and I head back from C2b to C2a to C5b to C5a, and from there to the second class 4 w-space system. Again, on finding no overt signs of activity I leave the system alone, making my way back through C5a to C4a and C3a, where checking the tower sees no change since I left it what feels like ten hours ago. I jump home, copy to our shared can the twenty-two bookmarks for wormholes in eight systems, and take a break for a well-deserved sammich.

  1. 4 Responses to “Scanning never ends”

  2. I tip my hat to you, that much scanning is impressive!

    Disappointing that Tengu was unscannable. I really disagree with that mechanic, should need a cloak to be completely unscannable.

    Keep up the great blog, I read every day.

    By Btek on Jun 6, 2011

  3. Thanks, Btek.

    There was a comment a dev made on the forums recently that hinted unscannable ships may not be around much longer, but it was an oblique reference at best.

    By pjharvey on Jun 7, 2011

  4. Scanning
    * It is no longer possible to set up a ship to be impervious to scanning while uncloaked.
    * All probes can now contribute to a scan result, as opposed to the previous limit of four.



    By Btek on Jun 21, 2011

  5. They can run, but they can't hide. Not without a cloak, anyway.

    By pjharvey on Jun 21, 2011

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