Missing mining by moments

19th September 2014 – 5.27 pm

Well, ain't this place a geographical oddity? Exploring through a K162 wormhole from low-sec takes me to a class 2 w-space system with only two planets, anomalies scattered between them, but one planet hogging all of the signatures. It's a curious sight indeed. My directional scanner is clear of just about everything, with no towers or ships visible, but there is one mining drone abandoned out here. What are the odds that there is more to see elsewhere, when there isn't much elsewhere out there?

Rather odd class 2 w-space system

I launch probes and perform a blanket scan of the system. Along with the ten anomalies, five signatures, and lone drone, are two more drones and four ships. That's worth taking a look at, and I warp to the centre of the system where d-scan shows me two Venture mining frigates and two more mining drones, making me lose interest in the Drake battlecruiser, Merlin frigate, and tower. A pair of mining drones and some mining frigates could indicate activity.

Switching to the system map, I sweep d-scan around the anomalies, not really taking care to distinguish between combat and ore sites, and see one Venture with the two drones in otherwise empty space. That will be an ore site, one I want to visit. I surge my Proteus strategic cruiser in to warp towards the site holding the Venture, not particularly bothered by the minor threat posed by a Drake to my Proteus, and drop out of warp a healthy distance from an active miner. How exciting!

Dropping in to a rock field to see an active Venture

Not wanting to waste any time, I bookmark the rock the Venture and its little minions is chomping away on, bounce back to the perch I made on the way in to the site, and warp to get nice and close to the miner. Ah, no no no, as I decelerate the drones are recalled, which is not a positive sight, but an indication that the mining has come to an end. Or, at least, a brief pause as a full cargo is dropped off at the tower.

I hold my cloak, not wanting to spook a pilot obviously at the controls and preparing to leave, particularly one in an agile frigate that can escape my attentions with relative ease. If I am lucky, this is just a short break and the Venture will come back for more crunchy ore, and I keep my position as the Venture warps out of the site back towards the closest planet. At least he's local.

Getting to the arkonor as the Venture decides to leave

I flip my attention between the arkonor rock in front of me, mere kilometres away, and d-scan, which shows me, huh, an Iteron V hauler in the system. Should I be waiting in this site, or looking for the tower or other wormholes? If the Venture comes back then so can I, directly to this rock now that I have its positioned bookmarked, and it looks like it's worth finding the tower. I warp to the planet and search for the right moon.

The Iteron has disappeared from d-scan, and from my probes. What it was doing and where it came from will remain unknown for now. Locating the tower finds the Venture there, relaxing, and finally getting eyes on the other ships shows them to be empty. Damn, that means I was a few seconds too late to ambush a lone miner. Or maybe I am in time to catch something bigger.

The pilot swaps the Venture for the Drake, making me wonder, hope even, that he will head out to clear another ore site of Sleepers. There were wrecks in the site he just left, and I doubt he made them in the Venture. Mind you, they were also unlooted and unsalvaged, so it's not like the pilot engages Sleepers for the loot, and with more arkonor to collect in the first site there seems little point in making a second site ready. Indeed, after a short wait, the Drake blinks off-line. So close, but I wasn't quite in the right place at the right time.

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