16th August 2014 – 3.45 pm

It's all change at home. A bit of time away sees all five scannable sites missing from space, dispersed by the solar wind, and four new signatures wafted in to replace them. I would try to contain my excitement if they weren't all likely to be gas sites which I'll just activate and forget about until they've gone too. Still, I need to scan the sites in order to activate them, so I launch probes to take a look around.

Yep, all gas sites. Well, except our static wormhole, which is one of the signatures, but the rest are gas. I resolve the sites and the wormhole, bookmark each of them from the scan results, and activate each site in turn. Before I warp to our wormhole, though, I realise that our home w-space system is probably closed and we have a good anomaly to plunder. Keeping the ISK flowing is always a good goal.

I warp my covert Proteus strategic cruiser to our tower and swap it for the Golem marauder. I check that the Golem has enough cruise missiles in its hold for some Sleeper combat, realise that I have no idea how much 'enough' is and just guess that a thousand or so will probably do, and warp out of the tower to engage the Sleepers in the combat anomaly.

Once in the site, I start locking on to the Sleepers, activate the marauder's bastion mode, and launch the silly mobile tractor unit. That should keep me going for a bit, as I can shoot, loot, and salvage whilst updating my directional scanner and pinging the discovery scanner almost on automatic. As long as nothing comes along, I should be fine. That lets me consider the drones.

Shooting Sleepers in a Golem marauder

Not the Sleeper drones, no. Oblivion's drones. They were pretty cool, overall. The drones were nicely designed and nicely realised, exuding power and efficiency, combined with an effective lack of humanity that made them quite threatening if you were on the wrong side of them. Which makes the final confrontation in the human base all the more disappointing.

The drones come in to the base and all the humans scatter from these death machines. Quite rightly so, as the drones' power and efficiency are no better highlighted than in this climactic scene. The drones move and shoot, shoot and move, guns blazing almost continually, picking out new targets and firing without hesitation. Being awesome units, they move in three-dimensions and can fire in a direction independent of their movement. They were ripping through the base quite ruthlessly. Very cool so far.

This move-and-fire threat makes the drones deadly. That is, until the plot threatens the action. One drone chases after Julia Harper, and catches up with her in dead-end room, along with a couple of dozen other humans. Inexplicably, for an automated drone with no conscience and an already displayed penchence for wiping out the human race, the drone doesn't just gun everyone down and move on, it instead moves very slowly towards the humans, apparently highlighting each one in turn with a targeting laser.

The drone doesn't do what it's been doing up to this point and instead changes its entire behaviour to give Jack Harper time to appear, aim, and shoot the drone, destroying it at the speed of plot. It's really quite disappointing how obvious this trope is, considering how brutal and efficient the drones are shown to be, not twenty seconds earlier.

Anyway, the Sleepers don't act out of character for Sleepers. They trundle in to range as quick as they can, keep their range based on ship type, and shoot and apply electronic warfare as normal. I pop each one as normal too, no one coming to interrupt me, and no new signatures appearing on the discovery scanner. All the wrecks are looted and salvaged, and I bring back a cool eighty million ISK in plunder to our hangar.

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