Taking on a Tengu

20th April 2012 – 5.08 pm

I'm heading forwards. Backwards provided a little entertainment, as podding a capsuleer saw my security status plunge to new lows, but the class 3 w-space system behind a K162 in our home system only holds sleeping pilots. One was doing nothing when I first entered, and two were up to just as little as I came back after ratting in low-sec empire space, to try to mitigate my damaged status. Maybe I'll have more luck at finding targets in the class 3 w-space system through our static wormhole.

An empty directional scanner in C3a is not terribly encouraging, but the system is bigger than d-scan can see, so I warp away to launch scanning probes. Instead, I warp to within d-scan range of a tower, which lets me see a more promising sight of a Manticore stealth bomber, shuttle, and Badger hauler. I locate the tower to have my hopes dashed, seeing all three ships empty, so return my attention to launching probes and scanning. Nine signatures dotted amongst the seven anomalies won't take long to resolve, although I'm only really interested in finding wormholes.

My probes pick up more than just the static exit to low-sec in this C3, but the only extra connection is a K162 from class 4 w-space that is reaching the end of its natural lifetime. A dying wormhole means it was opened many hours ago, which generally indicates whatever activity passed this way is likely to be gone. Not always, but generally. Rather than try to get lucky I head out to low-sec, hoping to get a few more easy rat kills to help my flailing security status. I jump out to where else but Aridia, where I am by myself. Oh good, I can rat without interruption.

Ratting remains remarkably tedious. I make a small circuit of some low-sec systems, picking off a rat or two along my way, before getting horribly bored and returning to w-space. Besides being awfully mean to some poor capsuleer exploring the Black Monolith it looks like I'll not get anything done this evening. In fact, I suppose I've taken a step backwards, as the pod kill was purely opportunistic, not even getting the ship in the first place, so all I've really done is kill my security status. Good job, Penny!

But before I go to bed I'll take one last look in C3b, though the K162 connecting in to our home system. Jumping in to the system has another change of ships, with the Tengu strategic cruiser now being joined by a Noctis salvager. D-scan places the Noctis at the tower, and there are no wrecks visible, so I don't think anything's happening. Still, I warp to the tower to see if anything may happen, only to find the Tengu's missing. He's in the system, just not here.

I open the system map and swing d-scan around, quickly finding the Tengu in one of the system's anomalies. I warp in to take a look, and see the strategic cruiser flying solo against Sleepers. From experience, I know that this is going to take a while, and even if he salvages the sites immediately after finishing them I could be here for twenty minutes just watching and waiting for my chance to take a pop at the Noctis. If he moves on to more sites I will be sitting around for longer, and it's already late. Then again, I don't have to aim for the Noctis.

Having a static connection to class 3 w-space, I know these anomalies quite well. The next wave is a few cruisers that have no EWAR, which is pretty comfortable to tank. The Tengu is not moving, making him an easy target to track without a scout, and he's even sitting on the cosmic anomaly, making his position trivial to bookmark and warp to. On top of that, he's taken the time to destroy the Argos guns, reducing the threat of damage any ship in the anomaly will have to face. That may be good for him, but it's also good for an ambusher. I think I have a chance of successfully engaging this Tengu.

My main concern is how closely the pilot is watching d-scan, as the wormhole is in range of the anomaly, but I think the worst that could happen is his warping out of the site before I return. I have a slight concern that the Tengu is acting like bait, but this is just general paranoia. I've been through this system and watched the pilots over the course of this evening. I have seen at most two pilots, neither of them particularly active, and almost no ship movements. If they are trying to bait someone, it is with supreme patience.

I'm going to take a shot at the Tengu. I leave the anomaly, jump home, and warp to our tower. Our ship killer Legion strategic cruisers are designed to take down actively tanked Tengus, and that is my current target, so I board Jeff K's Third Prophecy and return to C3b. On the wormhole, I hold my session change cloak after jumping in, as I adjust d-scan to check the anomaly. The Tengu is still there. The Noctis is still at the tower. There are still no new ships. All looks good, so I surge my Legion in to warp, activate my defensive modules, and get myself ready.

I drop out of warp close enough to the Tengu to engage immediately. He remains sitting stationary on the cosmic signature. All that's changed is the Sleeper battleship is now a wreck and the four cruisers of the second wave have appeared. I gain a positive target lock on the Tengu, disrupt his warp engines, and start shooting. Shooting, though, is pretty much ineffective at the moment. My hits barely register on his powerfully boosted shields, but this is why my Legion is fitted with energy neutralisers. I activate the neuts to start sucking the juice right out of the Tengu's capacitor.

My own shields are down, but I'm expecting that. My armour is my protection, and it's holding up just fine, even with the Sleepers shooting me. The Tengu is having problems, though. It has taken a handful of module cycles, but my neuts have bled the capacitor dry. I can tell, because the target's shields are dropping very quickly indeed. With no juice to power the shield hardeners or shield booster the Tengu has pitifully weak defences. I chew through the shields and obliterate the armour, the pilot managing to eject his pod moments before the hull is ripped apart and the Tengu explodes.

I aim to catch the pod but, without a sensor booster, am not surprised to see it warp clear. With the Sleepers still shooting me I approach the new wreck and loot and shoot it. I'm not planning to come back to salvage this one and am happy to see it wasted. Sadly, the Dread Guristas EM shield hardener module fitted to the Tengu was destroyed with the ship and not available to be looted, along with plenty of Caldari Navy missiles. I transfer some decent Tech II modules in to my hold before shooting the wreck, which isn't too shabby, but the prize for me is the kill itself.

It's always good to make one last check of the constellation, even if nothing has been happening all night. It's also good to note what's happening on each pass through a system, such as keeping track of pilot numbers and ship types. And I'm pleased with my Legion's capability. We've tested the same ship and fitting before, but it's good to see it working so effectively against its intended target, particularly one-on-one. It's also a rather splendid end to the evening. I clear the pocket, checking d-scan to see the pilot staying in his pod and not boarding a new ship, and jump home. I ditch the loot in our hangar, swap to my covert Tengu, and hide in a corner of the system to sleep soundly.

  1. 7 Responses to “Taking on a Tengu”

  2. Nice detail and a good kill. It annoys me when people eject since you kill a perfectly good ship and miss the pod. I suppose if you've a fast lock, it's worth saving one point for the pod if you've two on your ship.

    By Terin on Apr 20, 2012

  3. Nice kill Penny


    By Zandramus on Apr 20, 2012

  4. I do agree with the other poster though, you need to be able to tractor beam another ship home with you


    By Zandramus on Apr 20, 2012

  5. Argos sentry guns do not target switch like other sleepers so it helps to jump people while they are still up.

    By kryn on Apr 20, 2012

  6. Thanks, chaps. And that's good to know, kryn. I'll keep it in mind for future ambushes.

    Ejecting does make popping the ship a bit of a waste. I don't know myself, but is that a new phenomenon because of the skill loss associated with T3s, or did it happen long before strategic cruisers appeared? I know pilots will self-destruct to deny opponents a kill-board credit, but ejecting doesn't seem to stop that.

    I suppose if I had been quick enough, maybe I could have stopped firing, dropped the Legion in a safe spot in that system, picked up the Tengu, and got the two ships home. Stopping shooting can be the hard part, though, particularly if it's only the pilot's skills holding the ship together by the time he ejects.

    By pjharvey on Apr 20, 2012

  7. I'd love to see your legion fit, as I may attempt to put together a legion ship killer of my own.

    By Jhared Skyfire on Apr 21, 2012

  8. The Legion's been blown up enough, and so plastered on several killboards, that it can't be considered a secret:

    Legion electronics: energy parasitic complex
    Legion defensive: adaptive augmenter
    Legion offensive: assault optimisation
    Legion propulsion: fuel catalyst
    Legion engineering: power core multiplier

    High slots:
    6 × heavy assault missile launcher II
    2 × medium energy neutraliser II

    Mid slots:
    1 × 10 MN afterburner II
    1 × warp disruptor II
    1 × stasis webifier II

    Low slots:
    1 × damage control II
    1 × overdrive injector II
    2 × energised adaptive membrane II
    1 × 1600 mm reinforced tungsten plates

    1 × medium warhead calefaction catalyst I
    2 × medium trimark armour pump I

    Suck them dry, hit them hard. But know your target.

    By pjharvey on Apr 29, 2012

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