Low-sec is dangerous

21st June 2011 – 5.52 pm

Another day, another empty home system. I copy the bookmarks gracefully dropped in to our shared can and go out exploring. The two Badger haulers, Dominix battleship, two Drake battlecruisers, Ferox battlecruiser, Heron frigate, and Kitsune electronic attack ship all make our neighbouring class 3 w-space system look busy, but there are no wrecks or jet-cans on my directional scanner and I suspect not much is happening. Warping to the tower confirms my suspicions, as I find none of the ships piloted and the system devoid of activity.

Two K162 wormholes in this C3 could offer opportunity but, judging by the time the bookmarks were made, are probably no longer around. I investigate each connection only to arrive in empty space both times, leaving me with little option for exploration but to scan and hope for a new wormhole to have appeared. Eight signatures hide only rocks and gas, but I still have the system's static exit to low-sec empire space to venture through. I jump out to find myself in the Aridia region, a couple of other pilots in the system with me, and with some anomalies and signatures it looks like it's time for more low-sec ratting.

Fin arrives, our glorious leader boarding a Nighthawk command ship to complement my Drake for low-sec anomalies, but when we jump out to low-sec we immediately think about turning around. Core scanning probes are out in the system and converging on the wormhole we're sat on, and I think we could try to catch whatever scout is headed this way. We could be stymied by wormhole polarisation issues and, judging by the proximity of the probes, may not reach this wormhole in time to intercept the scout, but we can give it a go. We jump back home, swap to an interceptor and interdictor, and get back to sit on the static wormhole in the C3, waiting a mere fifteen seconds for the polarisation on my hull to dissipate.

I am not on the wormhole for more than ten seconds before it flares, Fin still warping across the C3 behind me. She drops out of warp to launch a warp disruption probe, bubbling the wormhole, as I lock and start shooting a Cheetah covert operations boat. Our target flees back to low-sec quickly enough and we both follow, but despite getting a decloaking bump on the other side of the wormhole the cov-ops is suitably aligned to warp away before I can lock him and disrupt his warp engines. A quick check of the local channel shows that none of his colleagues are present, so no immediate retaliation can be expected, and we return to our plan of shooting rats.

I've apparently scanned a 6/10 DED complex, which probably means something. Most likely it means that my tank-compromised, short-range PvP Drake is not really suited to the combat here, although Fin's better-fitted Drake is coping rather better. We both have to warp out occasionally, me more often than Fin, but adding newly arrived Mick's firepower in his Loki strategic cruiser lets us progress well enough. As we shoot, the low-sec system occasionally gets some travellers passing through, and I keep a watchful eye on both the local channel and d-scan to ensure our safety from other capsuleers. One passer-by even asks about our status, but I don't care for the personal level of the details he's after and ignore him.

It is when Fin's taking a breather and Mick's changing ships back at home when I notice combat scanning probes appear on d-scan. Judging by the few people in the system and the lack of other ships on d-scan, I think I'm the target of the scout. I have noticed a Ferox sitting in the system for a short while now, and have him positioned on a stargate, and suspect that my own persistence in this system will see him paying me a visit soon. I alert Mick and Fin and request suitable ships to repel the battlecruiser, as I bail out of the combat site to loiter on the wormhole instead. Sure enough, the probes relocate to find me again and, within a minute, the Ferox is dropping out of warp on to my position, getting a lock and engaging me.

I sit passively initially, getting an update on my colleagues' locations, thinking we could make a good target out of the Ferox. But local spikes, more contacts appear on d-scan, and I jump through the wormhole as I call to abort the operation. Fin hasn't left our system yet, holding for positive confirmation of a target, but Mick is in the C3 on the wormhole and spots a Moa cruiser waiting for me. That's not all, though, as we both warp homewards, thankfully not having our warp engines disrupted, seeing several Hurricane battlecruisers and a Rokh battleship appear on d-scan, having jumped in to the C3 in chase of us. I should have known that we'd be outnumbered again by a roaming gang, but I didn't think the Ferox would be the tackler.

We're clear and the low-seccers leave the C3, perhaps not caring to scan any deeper in to w-space, and we leave the low-sec system behind too. As was the plan, albeit a little earlier than intended, we collapse our static wormhole to offer us a new C3 to explore. Sadly, we only find an empty system with no anomalies and only three ladar gas harvesting sites. Without even looking through this C3's static exit to low-sec we collapse our wormhole again. On one trip through the wormhole a Cheetah appears in the system, which somehow manages to evade Mick's Dominix bearing down on him, and even though the cov-ops pilot looks to be scanning the system he doesn't venture through our wormhole to get trapped in our HICceptor ambush.

Waiting for the scout not to appear takes a little while and looks to bring the evening to a close. We make one more trip with an Orca industrial command ship to destabilise our static wormhole critically, but rather than collapse it completely we leave it in its unwelcoming state. We are unlikely to get any visitors through the connection, and certainly no big ships, and it is now too late to explore a third system for adventure. We head back to our tower to get some sleep.

  1. 2 Responses to “Low-sec is dangerous”

  2. Can you add "WH Polarisation" meaning/mechanic to the W-Space glossary. Somewhat forget exactly what it means in reference to the timer on how many times through. Its not listed in the glossary section.

    By Ardent Defender on Jun 21, 2011

  3. I have added an entry for 'polarisation' in the w-space glossary. I hope the cause and effect is clear.

    Thanks for suggesting the addition, it needed to be added.

    By pjharvey on Jun 23, 2011

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