The Huola Derby

by muskells

If Late-Nite Alliance are lions then what does that make the Amarrians we fight?

The alliances of the Amarrian empire in factional warfare space must be the thoroughbred racehorses of our little part of the sandbox. On the surface they are calm and powerful, they have a air of nobility around them. They have a defined musculature second to none and have the endurance of ages.

But in all reality they are just a horse without any balls that is good at running.

In my time spent in FW space I’ve noticed a few things that have kept constant over the years. There are always fights to be had if you know where to look, the average pilot is actually below average, and if you win you are blobbing.

One of the chief complaints that I see most of my compatriots mention, myself included, is that there are a deficit of fights on the warfront and this leads to abject boredom. These fight-starved pilots that are drowning in a sea of blue then resort to petty inner squabbling which in turn breaks up the unity that brought them together in the first place.

Where the buffalo roam.

There are fights to be had at all times in EVE-Online and especially in FW space, you just need to know where to look and be willing to put yourself at a ‘apparent’ disadvantage.

I find some of the best fights I’ve ever had in KPP was when we were outnumbered, outgunned and out positioned but we managed to squeeze a victory due to us out smarting, outplaying and demoralizing our opponents.

One example of this was a month or so back:

It was very late at night(usually when I play) and most of my alliance was not to be found anywhere. I was roaming around in a shield fit Talos used for skirmishing as well as having my loki boosting alt sitting in system. There was a small gang of Amarrians from Wolfsbridgade putting around in some somewhat shiny ships and I figured I’d give them a bit of a run for their money.

Enter Talos vs Harbinger, Harbinger, Vindicator, Hurricane, Arazu, Malediction, Rapier.

Immediately you would think that this gang set up would decimate my poor Talos, but I wouldn’t let that stop me. Fitting with a HG Snake set and skirmish links I could pull range without too much trouble and dictate the fight on my terms. I spent the next 10 minutes warping from safe-spot to safe-spot harassing the group with potshots and verbal punishment in local.

Then my opportunity presented itself.

One of the harbingers managed to get itself close to a safespot beside me, but was too close to the gate for its friends to warp directly to it. So I lit up the harby and took him into structure before his allies arrived on scene. By the time they landed I was 50km out of their range and their harby friend was dead. This act was repeated while the other harbinger died as well as a thrasher that attempted to tackle me.

I drew the fight out along the axis of the gate, making sure to burn away in a direction where there was nothing they could get a decent warp-in on me in range. My made a small piloting error and capped myself out while trying to kill the Arazu pilot and ended up losing my Talos to the rapier and vindicator’s webs.

Was I upset that I lost my ship? Not at all. Did I have an excellent fight? Absolutely. Did I go in expecting to lose my Talos? You better damned well believe it!

The moral of the story is this: If you’re willing to put yourself at a risk it can end up putting you at an advantage in the long run. Smart piloting makes anything possible within the confines of this game and that is the beauty of EVE.

Stupid is as stupid does.

One of the things I hear more often on comms than I would like is the word *bait*. Oh that drake might be bait. That’s a bait for a hotdrop. We shouldn’t go attack that fleet because it’s bait. While in quite a few cases people will set up a situation in order to provoke aggression only to subsequently gangbang the opposing team, AKA Bait them into a fight.

But that’s just it, isn’t it? If you have present yourself as weak in order for the opposing team to gather up enough balls in order to provoke a fight all that’s happening is you’re fighting cowards. And when the tides of war flow out of your favour you turn tail and run, not considering other options in order to give you some force multiplication. You’re just going to perpetuate a cycle of spy vs. spy.

Another thing I notice is that the vast majority of pilots tend to over-estimate the capabilities of their enemies. One of the best skills I learned from being a pirate and roaming solo was to gauge my opponent not by his ship-type but by his eve-kill/battleclinic history, age, and actions. Too many solo fights have been lost before they’ve even begun because of the simple idea that they couldn’t possibly kill that zealot in a rifter. Never underestimate the stupidity of your enemy. If anything you’ll confuse the fuck out of him and he might just make the mistake that will cost him his ship.

Once you’re comfortable enough with your own knowledge of the various ship types in EVE and their abilities, as well as having another window open on another screen or in the background with eve-kill pilot search open you’ll be much better at determining what you can and cannot engage.

That four letter word.

Blob. I’m only going to touch on this briefly as my wonderful and talented corp-mate already said what was needed to be said about this subject.

Last night KPP and company heard Nitrog (an old friend, new pilot in corp) shout that he was getting engaged by an Amarrian gang a few jumped out from our location. By the time we got there our poor Nitterdoodle had had his hurricane blown into tiny space bits but we weren’t going to let that stop us avenging his death.

Enter KPP and Co, avengers of the Crickish (his nickname).

We warped to the Labapi gate at 0 and started to light up the terrible fleet of our enemies. On field they had a falcon and rook, a few BCs and a navy omen totally 8 pilots. We had a proteus, vindicator, talos and a few other BCs totally 7 pilots sans ECM ships.

We dispatched the brutix on field first, then the navy omen, then the harbinger followed by the rook that was at range.

We ended up victorious, despite the number and ECM advantage the Amarr had. But what followed was the interesting part.

They said we blobbed them.


I probably don’t need to explain why this is ridiculous but I will anyway. Not only did they have a slight number advantage, two ECM ships and quite a bit of DPS on field. They also had us trickle into the fight slowly which would’ve made it a lot harder for us to project our damage out.

I guess this is one horse-race where I’ll sit on the sidelines.

At the end of the day EVE will always be a dynamic and free-form game where it’s up to you to make your own fun. But when the time comes that you get upset over losing when someone has a distinct disadvantage over you and you resort to the ‘blobbing’ defence to make yourself feel better… maybe you should re-evaluate why you play the game.