Ever-shifting w-space constellation

8th August 2011 – 5.24 pm

The whole corporation has turned thief! Entire hangars have been cleared of ships and modules, and no one is batting an eyelid. I'm told it's part of the process in tearing down the bivouac and my colleagues aren't really stealing every ship in sight, but I'm going to keep a close watch on everyone. Bookmarks are available today and the constellation is a complicated one, so after I spend half-an-hour waiting for my nav-comp to load the data I head out to see if I can make sense of the convoluted connections.

Starting my roam seems simple enough, jumping through the only wormhole in our home to the neighbouring class 4 w-space system. The C4 is empty and inactive, and again holds just the one connection. So far it all looks rather straightforward, and jumping in to the next w-space system only puts me in an empty C5 with wormholes to a C6 and low-sec empire space, even if the connection to deadly w-space is naturally threatening. I continue onwards through w-space to see an Orca industrial command ship and Providence freighter unpiloted in a tower in the C6, and bookmarks guiding me either to the static connection to class 5 w-space or a K162 to class 2 w-space. I pick the C2 to explore first.

Jumping in to the C2 gives me no more relevant bookmarks, not even for the wormhole I'm sitting on, making this system unexplored. I may only have a connection to k-space to find, but there is also the possibility of further K162s, or even activity, to uncover. I cross activity off my list of exciting possibilities in this system when I open my map to find there is only one planet orbiting the star, making there really nowhere to hide here. I launch probes and scan, resolving the second static wormhole to be an exit to null-sec. It's perhaps no surprise this system remains unoccupied, with its one planet, seventeen moons, and static connections to deadly class 6 w-space and null-sec k-space. It would be pretty hardcore to live here.

My scanning reveals no other wormholes to find, presumably whoever opened their static connection to the C2 being rather aghast at the options ahead of them and collapsing their wormhole pretty quickly. Speaking of collapsing wormholes, there has been some activity ahead of me. Mick spotted some battleships sitting distant off a wormhole and wondered what they were up to, until they warped as a fleet and promptly stressed the connection until it could take no more. Our link to the already bookmarked constellation is severed, but at least it gives us more to explore and, hopefully, more opportunity.

Mick has resolved the replacement wormhole to the new class 5 system, which I get to through the C6 and across the second class 5 system in our chain. This C5b not only connects to C5c, but has another class 5 system connecting in to it, as well as exits to both low- and null-sec, making it something of a crossroads at the moment. We ignore the known connections and jump in to C5c to see where we are led. D-scan is clear on the K162 in C5c, and launching scanning probes reveals a couple of ships amongst the ten anomalies and eight signatures. It doesn't take long to find the ships, both the Drake battlecruiser and Bestower hauler piloted but inert inside the shields of one of the two towers here.

I watch the Bestower as Mick scans the inner system, but the hauler gives up on even doing nothing, disappearing as the pilot drinks himself in to a stupor at the lack of action in w-space currently. I know that feeling. Two wormholes are found here, one coming in from low-sec and the system's static connection leading to class 2 w-space. Leaving the Drake behind, I find myself in a system I visited nine months ago, now with the tower moved one moon across. Maybe the view is better here, but it's all just empty space still. The static wormholes to class 3 w-space and high-sec are found, and by now my vigour is failing me.

Mick jumps ahead to see four ships on d-scan, but even his enthusiasm is palling. There is a small rush of excitement at the thought of activity as a Bestower on d-scan is swapped for a Broadsword heavy interdictor, but on finding the tower Mick sees all four ships there to be unpiloted, including the HIC. I think it's a lack of glucose that's causing blurred vision and recommend heading back home to get some food. Mick's good with that, noting that there is 'so much empty space today'. Yes, opportunity has felt sparse for a while. We get home still without bumping in to anyone, and take a break for food. To entertain myself on such a quiet day, and to remind me where I'm going later, I take the time to make a map of our constellation as it currently stands.

  1. 7 Responses to “Ever-shifting w-space constellation”

  2. I may have asked this already, but what do you use to create your wormhole maps?

    By Doyce (Ty Delaney) on Aug 8, 2011

  3. It's just a basic paint program. I think I looked for a simple schematic application but couldn't find anything suitable, which is a shame as it could save me a fair bit of fiddling with bitmapped lines. Still, I'm pleased with the results, despite the time it takes me to create each one, and like the visual representation of w-space that I reveal on the day.

    By pjharvey on Aug 8, 2011

  4. If you prefer auto generation you can try google chart API:

    By Mick Straih on Aug 9, 2011

  5. Argh link broke, you'll have to copy paste the whole thing.

    By Mick Straih on Aug 9, 2011

  6. You could try http://www.graphviz.org/ , but it can be fiddly.

    By Btek on Aug 9, 2011

  7. Thanks, I'll take a look at those options.

    By pjharvey on Aug 9, 2011

  8. Graphvis is actually what google uses to display those graphs (hence 'gv' as chart type).
    Also you can use this page to edit the parameters and http://tinyurl.com/3jcuvjr

    Anyway i'd say this is more for quick sketch since you have limited options for specifying how it looks, but you can create it very fast.

    By Mick Straih on Aug 9, 2011

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