Gnawing on a Gnosis

5th November 2013 – 5.08 pm

The home system is clean once again. Sure, we still have anomalies floating around, but it's easy to tell at a glance that we only have our static wormhole as a route in and out of the system. It's even been scanned, resolved, and opened by Aii already. That's nice and convenient, even if it leads me to a neighbouring class 3 w-space system that may be occupied but is definitely inactive. Our last visit had us popping a Navy Megathron battleship in a gas harvesting site. Great days, but where are the pilots now?

No one's home, so I scan the five anomalies and six signatures. A data site, wormhole, data site, data site—the wicked, red-headed stepchildren of w-space—wormhole, and wormhole. Um, with our K162 that makes seven signatures. Something new has popped up. A K162 from class 3 w-space is interesting, and as the other two wormholes are the static exit to low-sec Metropolis and a K162 from low-sec Kor-Azor it is my natural choice of direction to go.

Whether the C3 K162 is the new connection or not I have no idea. Waiting for a couple of minutes sees nothing come through the wormhole and no ships or probes appearing on my directional scanner in C3a, so through I go to C3b. D-scan shows me a tower, Reaper frigate, and Gnosis battlecruiser. An adjustment to d-scan also shows me wrecks, one of a rookie frigate and a handful of Sleeper wrecks. The wrecks aren't in one of the three anomalies in the system, and the Gnosis is not at the tower. Coincidence?

My notes don't help me locate the tower quickly—my previous visit had us break up a fleet performing a hostile takeover, and all has changed again since then—but its being around a planet with a single moon does. I find the Reaper inside the force field unpiloted, so I tag the corporation and warp away to, well, not launch scanning probes. The system is small, and although I can get out of d-scan range of the tower I can't do the same for the battlecruiser. That's frustrating.

I'm planning to wait for the Gnosis to clear the site of Sleepers, warp to wherever he wants to warp to—the local tower, a different w-space system, whatever—and launch probes when he drops off d-scan. But watching my scanner suggests this won't work. The Sleeper wrecks aren't increasing, which isn't a positive sign, but they also aren't decreasing, which at least means he's not salvaging as he goes. But maybe he's taking a break. Or sucking gas. Or something else.

I launch probes quickly, quietly. I don't bother waiting for the launcher to reload, I just throw the combat scanning probes up and out of the system, far out of d-scan range, and cloak again. It's time to hunt the battlecruiser. I already have him pegged at 12·3 AU away from me, so I move closer, and then start looking for him using narrower d-scan beams. I get his bearing down to a five-degree beam, and adjust the range gate once more. He's about 1·9 AU away. That's nice and simple.

I arrange my probes around where I place the Gnosis, and whatever site he's in, double-checking with d-scan with every movement. He's still there, the rest of the system looks unchanged. It's time to scan. Ah, nuts, my maths has let me down a little, or perhaps the d-scan interface, as my conversion between hundreds of millions of kilometres to astronomical units went awry. The Gnosis is only 1·6 AU away. But I know this because my probes tell me, having locked on to the battlecruiser in a single scan. It's all good.

Good scan on the Gnosis if not the relic site

Bookmarking the position of the Gnosis for reference, I recall my probes and warp in at range to what turns out to be a relic site, making a perch on my way in. Ah, I see. The pilot has popped the first wave of Sleepers and is letting the last one take futile shots at him whilst he hacks open the artefacts for the loot inside. That's not a bad strategy, I suppose. As long as you keep an eye on d-scan. Which I don't think he is. But I doubt I can crack the Gnosis with my cloaky Loki strategic cruiser. Still, there are more artefacts to analyse. I think I have time to change in to something a little more dangerous.

Gnosis hacks at relics as a lone Sleeper does little to deter him

Back to C3a, home, swap in to a Legion strategic cruiser at our tower, in and across C3a again, and return to C3b. Nothing looks different, and I move from the wormhole, cloak, and warp to my perch in the relic site. The Gnosis has hacked open another artefact or two but he's not finished. But how can I get close? There isn't much my warp drive can lock on to, not without having to crawl cloaked a fair distance afterwards. Well, nothing except the bookmark of the Gnosis from the scan result. I think that'll do.

Yep, that will do nicely. I drop a little short, not wanting to be decloaked early, and am in a good position. The Gnosis is concentrating on an artefact and ignoring the Sleeper, right until I get close enough to spring the ambush. I decloak, get a positive target lock, and get all my offensive systems working. And I think I startle the Gnosis, as the pilot abandons ship almost immediately. It's like the battlecruiser pooed itself.

Engaging the Gnosis in my Legion

Gnosis pilot's pod shoots out of the exhaust port

The pod warps clear seconds after I decloak. Huh. Now what do I do? I don't want to just leave the Gnosis there, just in case it's a fake-out and the pod returns to sneak it away. I also don't want to simply blow up a decent, unpiloted ship. But it's just me out here at the moment, so I'm not quite sure I can both guard it against repossession and fly it back home myself. But I do know I probably shouldn't make my own ship more vulnerable than it needs to be. I warp back to my perch and cloak whilst I ponder.

What the hell. I'll dump the Legion and try to recover the Gnosis. It's possible I could make a safe spot either in this system or C3a and leave the Legion there temporarily, but doing so here would be potentially risky and in C3a not much of a time saver. I'll just go home, stow the Legion, and come back in my pod. So I do, and, sadly, see a lack of Gnosis on d-scan from the wormhole.

No Gnosis for me to steal today

No, I don't think the pilot sneaked back in to the site to collect it. I'm pretty sure he's a tourist anyway. Adjusting d-scan confirms my suspicions, and I warp my pod to the perch in the relic site to see that the Sleeper finished off the Gnosis in my absence. That's disappointing. I don't even get the kill mail. But there is loot. So, once more, back through C3a, home, in to my Loki, through C3a, and in to C3b. Across to the perch, check nothing looks different, and warp in to grab what I can.

Looting the Gnosis wreck whilst being shot by the sole Sleeper

I loot the wreck of the Gnosis with the Sleeper shooting me, bump in to the structure with the Sleeper shooting me, and warp back to my perch. I get some relics and what is left of the Gnosis, which I suppose is pretty much what the result would have been had the captain stayed with his ship. I can comfortably call this my kill. It was a good hunt, and a good catch.

  1. 3 Responses to “Gnawing on a Gnosis”

  2. You could have bookmarked the gnosis, warped to a safe in system, ejected from the legion, warped back to the gnosis, boarded, warped back to the legion, boarded the legion, flown home, dropped the legion off, returned in a pod, warped to the gnosis at the safe, and taken it safely home.

    By Araziah on Nov 5, 2013

  3. "It's like the battlecruiser pooed itself."

    Brilliant. I too name all my pods 'little brown trout'.

    TBH, if I'm flush, I'll drop the ship, preferring the killmail over the extra work.

    Do you fly the Loki over a Proteus for purely skill reasons? Just curious. At least with a Proteus you have the opportunity to apply a reasonable amount of damage.

    Enjoyed, would visit again.

    By Mortlake on Nov 6, 2013

  4. That would have been a good way to do it, Araziah. Had I remembered/realised the Sleepers would continue to shoot the Gnosis (when I was loitering in the site or otherwise), I may have made the intuitive leap to just get the ship out of harm's way, but considering some recent decisions I've made, yet to be published, I can't be sure I'd even have done that.

    Mortlake, I fly the Loki because of skill training, mostly. It was a Tengu first, before cross-training opened up the Loki, which I swapped to if only to try one out. I quite like the guns instead of the missiles for some circumstances, and not losing Sleeper Tengu or PvP Legion effectiveness should my Loki explodes seems a good enough reason to keep my ships diverse.

    I can now fly the Proteus, but don't tell anyone. I can't be seen as a Gallente sympathiser. I've been meaning to put a Proteus together to try it, much as I did with the Loki, but for one reason or another haven't quite got around to it. Maybe one day.

    By pjharvey on Nov 6, 2013

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