Archive for the 'Notable Smacktalk' Category

I’ve been spending some time on the Singularity test server, checking out the new probing system coming with the March 10 Apocrypha expansion. It’s still horribly buggy, but looks promising; more player skill to use, less randomness, less endless waiting. It looks like it will be easier to find specific ships (especially in deadspaces) than at present, to the dismay of low sec mission runners; but on the converse, the “salvager buffet” in busy mission running systems is going away. Instead of getting many warpable hits in single scan, all nicely identified by ship type, possible mission runners will need to be checked out one-by-one, with probe repositioning between efforts. All in all, I’m quite happy about the proposed changes, but mission salvage will be very different in a few weeks.

So, I decided to have one more taste of it, and dropped some probes. Found, fairly quickly, a bunch of small and medium Blood wrecks at an acceleration gate. The directional scanner indicated large wrecks through the gate, so through the gate I went.

It was a small wreck field, with only about five large wrecks and perhaps twenty mediums and smalls; so I decided to cherry pick the larges in my covert ops ship, rather than going back for a dedicated salvager. Good thing I did, too; because about the time I finished salvaging the large wrecks, three mission runner types showed up and began hoovering their wrecks at a great rate of speed. I had ten armor plates and thirty burned logic circuits, so I was happy; I salvaged another half-dozen mediums while they worked, and we were done.

Note I said I was happy. Them? Not so much.

Shortly after they arrived, I got a convo invite. Jarmada, apparently as much a stranger to punctuation as he is to courtesy and spelling, got right to the point:

Jarmada > fuck off
Jarmada > is this you mission
Marlenus > Would you like a petition for bad language?
Jarmada > do iyt
Jarmada > this is not your missiopn
Marlenus > Never said it was
Jarmada > so get out
Marlenus > Why?

Apparently he was stymied by the rhetorical force of my inquiry, because he ended the conversation.

Perhaps unhappy with the outcome, he sent me a somewhat incoherent EVEmail:

to piss poor to do your own missions : so u steal from other pple : your a scum bag of the lowest form

At this point, I looked up his info. He’s the CEO and founder of a two-member corp confusingly called The Australian Alliance. Don’t they speak English in Australia? Or have some form of literacy education in primary school?

I replied with a cheerful version of the Ironfleet form letter:

Just a salvager, actually; salvaging wrecks is what I do for a living. It’s not theft — salvage is not owned.

Have a look at the Ironfleet Towing And Salvage blog ( if you’re curious about the profession. While you are there, check out the “GMs On Salvage” article, to learn why it’s not theft as you seem to think.

Cheerio —

Marlenus, CEO
Ironfleet Towing and Salvage

This earned me a more coherent, if still unusually punctuated as well as unreceptive, response, urging me to play the game his way instead of mine:

salvage is theft : this is my mission : i did the kills : i dont use probes to find other pples salvage : go to a belt and salvage the wrecks there if ya want the salvage that bad

Pish, tush, my good man! If I did that, I wouldn’t have gotten all these lovely Armor Plates!

Somewhere in all this, he decided to do some Ironfleet advertising in local, which is always appreciated:

Jarmada > watch your missions guys : thers a prick in here mission jumping and salvaging your loot : name is “Marlenus” :
Ianmizu > just salvaging, or looting too?
Jarmada > just salvaging : so u cant shoot the asswipe
Ianmizu > ah :(
Jarmada > i not going to help the prick : not doin missions in this system
Jarmada > cya’s
Ianmizu > o/
Marlenus > Just another one of the many spaceways cleaning services Ironfleet Towing And Salvage is happy to provide!

A long time ago, in the time of The Great INDY War, I had a random war dec from a guy named Duckeye who never showed up. It was right after the INDY alliance called off AC-ME’s dog Chebri, and there were anonymous commenters in this post who suggested a Duckeye / Chebri connection, but it was never confirmed.

I did later confirm that Duckeye is a shared account, because I station camped him for awhile during factional warfare (he was flying for the Gallente scum) and we had a cordial chat during which he utterly failed to remember ever having declared war on Ironfleet, blaming his “little brother” who “played the account for a couple of weeks”. Yeah, that’s pretty obvious nonsense, but it’s the sort of nonsense you’ll get from account sharers who don’t want to be too open about it.

Anyway, about ten days ago the Duckeye / Chebri connection was confirmed in a fairly humorous way. Duckeye apparently got drunk and started inviting everybody in his address book into the “Duckeye’s Bathtub” chat channel; and *surprise* Chebri was there and acting like a resident of the channel. There was mass confusion as a great many people wanted to know “why am I here” so I was in the channel for almost twenty minutes, until Duckeye finally remembered who I was and kick/banned me. Here are a few of the funnier bits, it’s a very long chat file so these are highly condensed highlights. The first snip is for flavor and show the Duckeye/Chebri connection — they sound like friends or closer, but probably not the same person I’d say:

Channel ID: 2137386827
Channel Name: Duckeye’s Bathtub
Listener: Marlenus
Session started: 2009.01.05 05:40:05

EVE System > Channel MOTD: Welcome to my bathtub, GET DIRTY!!


[ 05:40:58 ] Chebri > /emote dances around in the water singing ‘splish splash I was takin a bath’
[ 05:41:12 ] Duckeye > rubber ducky, your the one, you make bathtime lots of fun
[ 05:41:13 ] The Kovenant > /emote plays with bubbles
[ 05:41:14 ] AdamVan Dutchman > weeee
[ 05:41:23 ] Auk Monnan > mmm, tribe will eat good this weak
[ 05:41:27 ] mayito > u a real gal chebri?
[ 05:41:32 ] Motre > What the hell are you doing to that rubber duckie…
[ 05:41:32 ] Duckeye > don’t touch her
[ 05:41:33 ] Chebri > ya
[ 05:41:34 ] mayito > i got a bone if u r
[ 05:41:34 ] AdamVan Dutchman > hey leave that duck alone
[ 05:41:37 ] mayito > boner*
[ 05:41:39 ] Chebri > LOL
[ 05:41:39 ] Motre > OH GOD! THAT DOES NOT GO THERE!
[ 05:41:41 ] mayito > oh shit
[ 05:41:42 ] AdamVan Dutchman > that’s gross
[ 05:41:44 ] Duckeye > /emote slices off mayito’s hands
[ 05:41:48 ] BAD CHICK > eh how did i get here
[ 05:41:48 ] mayito > im confused now
[ 05:41:53 ] Duckeye > SHE’S MINE
[ 05:41:56 ] Duckeye > hit on bad chick
[ 05:42:00 ] mayito > its bad chick!!!!!!!!!!
[ 05:42:11 ] mayito > bad chick
[ 05:42:13 ] Auk Monnan > and you may ask yourself…
[ 05:42:14 ] Duckeye > good boy
[ 05:42:16 ] mayito > im bad boy
[ 05:42:19 ] Chebri > 0o0o0o
[ 05:42:23 ] mayito > wana make bad kids?
[ 05:42:24 ] Chebri > /emote hugs Duckey
[ 05:42:26 ] BAD CHICK > i am just missunderstood
[ 05:42:29 ] Duckeye > hehe
[ 05:42:37 ] BAD CHICK > i am lesbian .
[ 05:42:40 ] hermerdoo > what up
[ 05:42:41 ] mayito > so
[ 05:42:44 ] GROUPA > can i help you guys
[ 05:42:45 ] Chebri > *\o/*
[ 05:42:45 ] AdamVan Dutchman > yay
[ 05:42:47 ] mayito > i love lesbians
[ 05:42:54 ] Entarii > what the hell is going on here


[ 05:45:26 ] Chebri > \\o
[ 05:45:30 ] Chebri > o//
[ 05:45:35 ] mayito > uh oh
[ 05:45:39 ] mayito > shes dancing
[ 05:45:43 ] Motre > WOOOO! TAKE OT OFF
[ 05:45:45 ] Chebri > weeee
[ 05:45:50 ] mayito > take it off..take it offf!!
[ 05:45:53 ] Chebri > there’s nothing on! it’s a bathtub
[ 05:45:58 ] AdamVan Dutchman > nakedness woo
[ 05:45:59 ] Chebri > ( * Y * )
[ 05:46:11 ] mayito > /emote faints in the water
[ 05:46:13 ] AdamVan Dutchman > your wearing nothing but a bath tub
[ 05:46:18 ] mayito > XP
[ 05:46:20 ] Chebri > exactly…and bubbles


[ 05:47:38 ] Frank Doth > can we know whats goign on?
[ 05:47:45 ] Duckeye > CAN you? sure thing
[ 05:47:59 ] Father Yarrr > why did we get invited here
[ 05:48:14 ] Father Yarrr > im busy killin stuff
[ 05:48:14 ] jorunbrigita > umm how do you know it’s a toe?
[ 05:48:20 ] BobSmith BobSmith > ?
[ 05:48:26 ] BobSmith BobSmith > hello
[ 05:48:32 ] BobSmith BobSmith > whats up?
[ 05:48:35 ] Chebri > LOL
[ 05:48:39 ] Khysanth > wow i dont know any of you
[ 05:48:44 ] Khysanth > why was i invited here?
[ 05:48:46 ] Duckeye > I know YOU
[ 05:48:49 ] Duckeye > I’ve been watching you…
[ 05:48:52 ] Khysanth > i’ll bet you do
[ 05:48:54 ] Duckeye > I like your underwear…
[ 05:49:06 ] Duckeye > and your tatoo of eddie murphy on your left shin
[ 05:49:06 ] Marlenus > It looks like Duckey got drunk and invited everybody in his address book into a chatroom


[ 05:49:24 ] Chebri > ack!
[ 05:49:28 ] Chebri > Ore thief!!!
[ 05:49:29 ] Duckeye > I WANT YOU, CUZ I’M MR. VAIN
[ 05:49:33 ] Animenick > any clue what this chat is for?
[ 05:49:37 ] Duckeye > for fun
[ 05:49:40 ] Marlenus > LOL at Chebri, I wuz invited
[ 05:49:45 ] ar2ro > yo. what is the channel?
[ 05:49:46 ] AdamVan Dutchman > we are having a buble bath and blow
[ 05:49:56 ] Chebri > ya I know..we’re doing random invites
[ 05:50:05 ] Chebri > pitty the poor soul in local that spams something for sale =D
[ 05:50:07 ] Duckeye > nothin but love!
[ 05:50:09 ] BobSmith BobSmith > ok
[ 05:50:12 ] Chebri > \o/
[ 05:50:15 ] BobSmith BobSmith > sounds fun
[ 05:50:19 ] Chebri > /emote wants more bubbles


[ 05:51:41 ] Bjorn Stahle > was that Marlenus?!?
[ 05:51:49 ] ar2ro > Random invitation is sux)
[ 05:51:50 ] Chebri > ya
[ 05:51:53 ] Chebri > >.< [ 05:51:57 ] Duckeye > this will be our theme song
[ 05:51:58 ] Duckeye >
[ 05:52:01 ] Bjorn Stahle > That Bastard referred to me as that Battle cruiser guy!
[ 05:52:05 ] Marlenus > Bjjorn that was, but I don’t know you
[ 05:52:10 ] Marlenus > LOL
[ 05:52:23 ] Chebri > \\o
[ 05:53:09 ] Bjorn Stahle > Heya Marlenus :)


[ 05:55:42 ] Marlenus > Bjorn Stahle which battlecruiser guy are you? ;-)
[ 05:55:43 ] Hildale > random invites?
[ 05:55:50 ] Duckeye > na, tactical invites
[ 05:56:00 ] Jonny Hawks > Dis da Bath Tub rev’o’LUTION MON!
[ 05:56:00 ] Bjorn Stahle > ummm it was like a year ago lol
[ 05:56:01 ] Duckeye > if your name begins with a letter, then I invite you
[ 05:56:15 ] Marlenus > So much was
[ 05:56:38 ] Bjorn Stahle > which reminds me I upgraded my computer 6 months ago and lost your web page url, Marlenus
[ 05:56:42 ] Gzafer > WHO DID THIS
[ 05:56:52 ] Duckeye > someones hacking your computer Gzafer!
[ 05:56:57 ] Gzafer > WHAT
[ 05:56:57 ] Duckeye > quick, press Ctrl+Q!
[ 05:56:59 ] Bjorn Stahle > But it was INDY war dec
[ 05:57:03 ] Marlenus >, Bjorn — both of the hosts of this channel have mentions
[ 05:57:15 ] Marlenus > Ahy, the INDY war, I remember it fondly
[ 05:57:21 ] Duckeye > ah shit
[ 05:57:58 ] Bjorn Stahle > damn you for making an easy url, Marlenus!
[ 05:58:03 ] Marlenus > ;-)
[ 05:58:04 ] Bjorn Stahle > /emote shakes fist
[ 05:58:04 ] Jonny Hawks > >>>>This be the “Hey EVE can be FUN Channel”<<<< [ 05:58:10 ] AdamVan Dutchman > this is definately not anything to do with fun
[ 05:58:17 ] Duckeye > I’m havin fun
[ 05:58:18 ] Gzafer > I DONT UNDERSTAND
[ 05:58:25 ] Marlenus > Bjorn you could have knocked me over with a feather when I saw that URL still available
[ 05:58:32 ] dolphin Jim > does anyone?
[ 05:58:35 ] Bjorn Stahle > lol
[ 05:59:01 ] Marlenus > dolphin Jim, some folks got drunk and started inviting everybody in their address book, looks like
[ 05:59:14 ] dolphin Jim > hehe

And right there I got kicked and banned. I think that last “ah shit” from Duckeye is probably when he finally realized who he’d invited. Aw, Duckeye, I didn’t know you still cared!

P.S. Remember AC-ME, Chebri’s former corp in INDY? It still exists and it’s still an alliance member, but there’s only one person left in the corporation.

So, there’s a guy in a belt, one YoriBeerminson, and he’s Retriever mining into a Badger II, using a Giant Secure Container for a transfer can. Pretty safe from salvagers, yeah?

Except, he’s got combat drones out for the rats. And he’s got some rat wrecks about. Any chance he’ll do something foolish?

So I warp in and loot some rat wrecks. I’m flashy to him, but he doesn’t want to play. No surprise.

Just for giggles, I check to see if he’s got a password on the transfer can. No. He doesn’t. So I snag the ore from the transfer can.

And I sit there for another cycle of his strip miners. He fills the transfer can again. I empty it. This is fun, and funny, although I’ll get bored soon. How long will it take him to catch on?

At the end of his next cycle, his lasers go quiet and there’s a long pause. Then the can window closes, and when I try to re-open it, I’m prompted for a password. He learns!

I tried “Marlenus Sucks” — but nothing.

So I fly away, and as I go, my Evemail flashes. Three Russian words from him: “будь здоров дятел”.

The first two words I know, they’re a blessing of sorts: “Be healthy.” I’m guessing he’s being sarcastic.

The last word is unknown to me. Google Translate suggests “woodpecker”, which gives me a hint. I’ll bet the slang meaning has more to do with the “pecker” and less to do with the “wood”. Can any Russian speakers confirm?

Flying the new cloaked blockade runner has a lot in common with submarine warfare. Which makes it great fun, if you’re willing to be patient.

Today I was flying around when I spotted a Retriever mining barge mining into a jet can. He was a long way away at the other end of the belt, so I bookmarked his can and warped away to a planet, warping back to the jetcan at zero.

He was gone.

The jetcan was full. It had a name.

I created an Ironfleet can. I gave it the same name. I put the ore from his can into my can.

Does this trick ever work? I mean, the can is the wrong color. But then, there’s greed to consider.

I moved away a few kilometers, cloaked, and waited.

Sure enough, within just a few seconds the Retriever pilot was back, this time in a Badger II. Upon warp in, he sat motionless a long time.

Then, he crawled over to my can. Again, he sat motionless a long time.

Then he heeled around, clearly aligning to something. Le sigh; he’s not falling for it. And if he does a clean grab-and-warp, I won’t have time to decloak and lock and scramble him.

Then, another lengthy wait. He’s clearly thinking about it, and thinking hard.

Ah ha! Now, he’s red flashy.

Decloak, wait for the uncloak delay, target, lock, locking, locking, locking… sweet! He’s scrambled. Fire all torpedoes!

Except, of course, what I’ve got is one heavy missile launcher. It will have to do.

Boom, boom, boom. He’s tanked pretty well, this is taking time. His shields are about gone though.

What’s this? He has initiated self-destruct? That, I’ve never had anybody do before.

No worries; he doesn’t have two minutes. Boom, boom, boom, he’s popped.

Two giant secure cans full of ore fall out, some useful modules too:

2008.12.11 01:13:00

Victim: Cavros Demetri
Corp: Firestorm Tactical Industries
Alliance: NONE
Faction: NONE
Destroyed: Badger Mark II
System: [redacted]
Security: 0.7
Damage Taken: 3187

Involved parties:

Name: Marlenus (laid the final blow)
Security: 1.2
Corp: Ironfleet Towing And Salvage
Alliance: Tear Extraction And Reclamation Service
Faction: NONE
Ship: Prowler
Weapon: Caldari Navy Thunderbolt Heavy Missile
Damage Done: 3187

Destroyed items:

Expanded Cargohold II, Qty: 3
Shield Recharger II, Qty: 2
Giant Secure Container (Cargo)
Azure Plagioclase, Qty: 11142 (In Container)
Giant Secure Container (Cargo)
Azure Plagioclase, Qty: 11142 (In Container)

Dropped items:

Invulnerability Field I
Medium Shield Booster II
Burned Logic Circuit, Qty: 2 (Cargo)
Sensor Booster I (Cargo)
Salvager I
Shield Recharger II
Giant Secure Container (Cargo)
Azure Plagioclase, Qty: 11142 (In Container)
Giant Secure Container (Cargo)
Azure Plagioclase, Qty: 11142 (In Container)

While I’m hauling his full cans, I notice that he’s smacking in local. We converse. It actually goes fairly well once he calms down, even though somebody who used to smacktalk me back when Ironfleet was a baby and I was salvaging in a tricked-out Badger II) can’t resist chiming in to share her low opinion of me:

Cavros Demetri > marlenus you’re a knob. you tipped my can then got my badger. what a cock cheese
Marlenus > I got your cans of ore too. ;-)
Cavros Demetri > hope you choke on them
Marlenus > It seems unlikely
Cavros Demetri > hmmm… welll hope you’re refining chokes you lol
Marlenus > You thought about that load a long time before taking it … you can’t say you didn’t have a bad vibe
Cavros Demetri > i spend nearly an hour mining for some knob to nick it. yeah it was mine. the principle of it
Marlenus > Oddly enough, it was floating alone in space when I found it.
Marlenus > From my perspective, some “knob” nicked it from an Ironfleet can
Cavros Demetri > funny that. you obviously didnt realise that a jet can needs a larger ship to recover it
Marlenus > Larger that what? Your cans are in my hanger
Marlenus > Your former cans, I should say
Cavros Demetri > you’re just taking the piss. shame you cant mine you’re own stuff eh?
Marlenus > Why should I mine, when there’s ore floating abandoned in space?
Cavros Demetri > you knew exactly what you were doing.
Cavros Demetri > you waited cloaked for me to warp
Marlenus > Of course I knew what I was doing, Ironfleet has been in the salvage business for almost three years
Marlenus > How many blockade runners do you see in this business? It’s a specialized trade
Cavros Demetri > nothing hard a bout sitting cloaked waiting for someone to warp away for their hauler.
Cavros Demetri > no skill at all
Valeria Crossroads > 3 years of being a bad human, sad that some are proud of it
Marlenus > LOL at Valeria
Marlenus > I’m just playing the game, same as the rest of you
Cavros Demetri > “LOL at valeria” 3 years and thats the best you can say
Valeria Crossroads > ore thiefs are people who would be a traitor in a real world war
Marlenus > It’s plenty good, she doesn’t have any merit to her attacks
Cavros Demetri > but she hasnt been dishonest
Marlenus > She’s one of the many who confuse in game fun with out of game morality
Marlenus > I haven’t been dishonest either
Cavros Demetri > you took out a harmless badger. ( is quite funny )
Cavros Demetri > yeah you played with the rules though
Valeria Crossroads > stealing is bad, in or outgame
Marlenus > Nothing dishonest in shooting at a ship that goes flashy red
Marlenus > And in-game, it’s not stealing.
Valeria Crossroads > yes it is other wise you would not been flagged as a thief when you do
Rocky Dean > it’s only stealing if you get caught. : P
Cavros Demetri > then firing cruise missiles at a badger. is that what you consider challenging?
Marlenus > Cruise missiles? I wish. You try to fit cruise missiles on a blockade runner, just let me know how it works for you
Cavros Demetri > well i wont be jetting when i get my hulk. and the corp will be told about you.
Marlenus > Oh good.
Rocky Dean > um, ya, I’m gonna tell my corp on you too Marlenus. : P LOL
Cavros Demetri > ill tell my mummy while im at it
Cavros Demetri > lol
Marlenus > My alliance chief will be delighted at the publicity.
Cavros Demetri > lol
Rocky Dean > oh, by the way Marl, any other juicy spots i could join in on the free lunch with that you’d suggest? : )
Cavros Demetri > try uitra
Marlenus > Not sure what you’re asking Rocky
Marlenus > It’s a full time job for me just keeping the local belts free of nav hazards
Rocky Dean > cans with free ore in them, i love those. : )
Cavros Demetri > you’ll find a few ibis’s there. thatll challenge you
Marlenus > Actually Cavros it’s not as easy as you think finding people who are willing to go flashy red like you did. There’s plenty of challenge to it.
Cavros Demetri > well, to be honest i did align to the station but clicked the wrong frigging one when i tried to warp so lost alignment bugger the thing lol
Marlenus > Yeah, you’d have got away if you’d done a clean flip-and-scoot
Cavros Demetri > i knew you would attack when i took the ore back
Cavros Demetri > yeah but im down to using this darn mouse touch pad thing on my laptop its driving me nuts
Marlenus > Ouch, I couldn’t fly with a touchpad
Cavros Demetri > yeah it pissed me off. sorry mate i know its a game just pssed i got the wrong station to warp to
Marlenus > I understand, no hard feelings on my end
Cavros Demetri > lol nope. fair play i like the tactics. not seen that before
Marlenus > I do try to be original, and the cloaking blockade runner is new tech for everybody
Cavros Demetri > right. i need sleep so ill catch you all later. well done marl. you got my ore:-)
Marlenus > Night Cavros
Cavros Demetri > nite! i might reset your standings tomorrow lmao

I found myself inside a mission today, in one of my odd shipfits that looks more dangerous than it is, and salvages better than it should.

Mission runner was there salvaging in a destroyer, but I saw a cargo can, which turned out to have several million ISK worth of robotics in it. So I flipped it to Ironfleet possession, put it on tow on my tractor beam, and wandered around salvaging a few of the more worth-while looking wrecks.

Mission runner was aggrieved. We had this convo, where I’m attempting to be as polite and friendly as possible without being unduly helpful:

Ziief > why do you have to flip my can man?
Marlenus > I don’t have to. I’m just salvaging
Ziief > u just took my robotic parts man, that’s messed up, i havent played this game for long and need the isk more than you could ever
Ziief > and cant you run your own missions so u can salvage your own wrecks?
Marlenus > I don’t think you understand … salvaging stuff floating in space is what I do, just like you run missions
Ziief > you saw me salvaging my own wrecks dude, is not like it was abandoned wrecks floating in space like you like to call it
Marlenus > Um, wrecks are not owned, so they weren’t “your own”
Marlenus > Wrecks are free to whomever gets there first
Ziief > ohh really? what about the robotic parts you stole from me man?
Marlenus > I scooped some parts floating in space, nothing in this game is yours if you don’t have it under control
Ziief > do you really have the need to steal crap like that?
Marlenus > I don’t consider it stealing
Marlenus > Have a look at the blog, you’ll get a better sense of why we like to play the game this way
Ziief > alright you fucking piece of shit, i tried to come to terms with your cocksucking ass, you’ll have it your way, this shit you stealing from me, will cost you dearly, be prepared to face a serious raping, you’ll learn a nice lesson you piece of shit

Oh, my.

We tremble, we do.

My alliance brothers in the Suddenly Ninja corporation have a monthly contest for who can generate the choicest “spouting off” from a salvage customer (although they don’t put it quite like that). It’s not an alliance-wide contest, I don’t think, or I’d have to enter this one.

Since robotics are bulky, I went back in one of my combat Cranes, and even then I had to leave a few behind. Ziief showed up right behind me in his Badger II, and I briefly thought I’d get to shoot at him. But he executed a smooth scoop-and-warp on the handful of remaining robotics, and (whether because of lag or client-side sluggishness) the can didn’t pop and he didn’t turn flashy until he was already (from my perspective) vanishing into warp. Ah, well, can’t shoot ’em all.

Last night I returned to Caldari space, only to discover that Jim Bridger had made Ironfleet some fine new friends at GunSlingerSquad Corp.

I came back because my skill training for the Prowler (a blockade runner like my beloved Crane, but having a second high slot to fit the newly-available-to-this-shipclass Covert Ops Cloak) had finally completed. I had a Prowler in the hangar and ready to fit, and I was eager to tinker with the new setup.

It turns out the Prowler is lower on mid slots and CPU than my beloved Crane, making it a challenge to fit up for the combat role I use these ships in. Not impossible, just tricky and expensive, so I was back and forth to Jita several times last night looking for mods that would fit.

By the time I was done, it was very late. I went out into the belts for a maiden voyage, and encountered SPJR mining into a jet can. Of course, I relieved him of his ore. While hauling the first of two shipments home, he wrote the following in local:

SPJR > you better bring that shit back right now

This made me fall off my chair laughing. Oh, really? Or else, what?

On the other hand Jim’s been riding these boys fairly hard, so I stayed quiet in local. Others did not:

Ranger Miriya > what happen sp
SPJR > Some dick just looted my 20k of ore
Ranger Miriya > what he in
SPJR > transport ship
SPJR > his names marlenus
Ranger Renlea > thats a bunch of crap. put a bounty on his head and we go hunting
SPJR > how i do that dude im new to this shit
SPJR > i have to be docked dont i?
Ranger Renlea > go into a station that has a bounty office and place bounty

I’m thinking “Good luck with that” but I hold my peace. They’ll learn the bounty rules in due time.

I do have to say, though, that I don’t comprehend the foul language. It seems like every time in this game that I’m considering lightening up on somebody because they are new, they come across all potty-mouth, which only convinces me they need extra pounding until they learn some humility or at least some politeness. Do they think it’s intimidating? Do they think it’s persuasive? Do they think it makes them look tougher if they talk tougher? I’ve never understood the theory of victory that underlies vulgar smack (except of course in the situation where you want to goad your enemy into fighting harder or stupider).

So. That was last night.

This morning, I took my shiny new (and as yet, unblooded) Prowler out for a prowl. Guess who I found?

Yup, SPJR. Destroyer mining into two Giant Secure Cans. Ah hah! Progress! They’ve finally abandoned the jet can!

Unfortunately, whoever gave them that tip didn’t tell them about anchoring. :(

So, as I’m looking at these two juicy GSCs that need plucking, despairing at my new friends from Gunslinger Squad and wondering how many expensive lessons they will need, what do you suppose appeared in local chat?

You guessed it: vulgar smacktalk. And not just any old vulgar smack; this was the best kind: premature, unjustifiably triumphalist vulgar smack!

SPJR > cant steal now can you? fuck head

You know Ironfleet. You know me. You know what happened next.

I couldn’t scoop both cans into the Prowler, so I scooped one of them, then took ore from the other to fill up my nooks and crannies. Now I’m flashing red to SPJR in his mining destroyer, but he seems reluctant to shoot. Fine, I’ll take his marbles and go home.

While warping home, I had to opine in local:

Marlenus > There are nuances to the use of Giant Secure Containers that you have not yet discovered.

And then, of course, I had to go back for the other can.

SPJR was still there, the can was still there, I scooped it. Then I began aligning for home. Anybody want to play shooty shooty? I was in no hurry.

At this point, MasterGladiator drops out of warp in his Badger II. Fine, maybe he was trying to save his GCS. No, wait, what’s this? He’s locking me! In the Badger! And it’s shooting! And I’m warp scrambled!


Damned if he didn’t engage me in a very creditable BattleBadger. His damage was decent for his age and skills, he had some anti-gunnery ECM fitted (which didn’t affect my missile launcher), and he came with a tackle and the blood lust to try and use it. After the haplessnesses that Jim encountered, I was impressed.

So, after I locked him back, scrambled him, and started shooting heavy missiles at him, I said so in local:

Marlenus > A creditable battle badger, good work!

I also noticed that SPJR in the mining destroyer had left the field — a surprise, as I expected them to double-team me. I guess he went home to refit for combat.

The Badger II went down slowly but surely. His damage never got through my shields, but he certainly was denting them. Just before he went pop, SPJR reappeared on the grid, this time in a Merlin.

As the Merlin was locking me, I finished the Badger:

2008.12.08 18:43:00

Victim: MasterGladiator
Corp: GunSlingerSquad Corp
Alliance: NONE
Faction: NONE
Destroyed: Badger Mark II
System: [redacted]
Security: 0.7
Damage Taken: 4820

Involved parties:

Name: Marlenus (laid the final blow)
Security: 1.2
Corp: Ironfleet Towing And Salvage
Alliance: Tear Extraction And Reclamation Service
Faction: NONE
Ship: Prowler
Weapon: Caldari Navy Thunderbolt Heavy Missile
Damage Done: 4820

Destroyed items:

Warp Disruptor II
ECCM Projector I
Medium C5-L Emergency Shield Overload I

Dropped items:

280mm Gallium I Cannon
M51 Iterative Shield Regenerator
Medium Azeotropic Ward Salubrity I
Proton S, Qty: 4952 (Cargo)

Now it’s Merlin time!

Wait, can I even hit a Merlin with heavy missiles these days?

The answer, it turns out is “yes, but not very hard.” I’d have to say our damage output seemed roughly equal. But of course, my shields were much bigger than his. He was warp scrambling me hard, and hitting me with ECM that might have helped if I was shooting guns, but he was having trouble doing enough damage to hurt me. He clearly had the speed advantage, though, so he could have escaped at any time. To his credit, he didn’t; I figured he was trying to hold me until the Badger pilot could come back in another ship.

Which, indeed, happened. MasterGladiator showed up in another Cormorant destroyer. By now the Merlin is in deep armor, and my shields are pretty much gone. If the Cormie had been fit for serious damage, this could start to hurt.

So, I decided to turn on my shield booster, and went back to finishing the Merlin:

2008.12.08 18:47:00

Victim: SPJR
Corp: GunSlingerSquad Corp
Alliance: NONE
Faction: NONE
Destroyed: Merlin
System: [redacted]
Security: 0.7
Damage Taken: 1420

Involved parties:

Name: Marlenus (laid the final blow)
Security: 1.2
Corp: Ironfleet Towing And Salvage
Alliance: Tear Extraction And Reclamation Service
Faction: NONE
Ship: Prowler
Weapon: Caldari Navy Havoc Heavy Missile
Damage Done: 1420

Destroyed items:

Gremlin Rocket, Qty: 3119 (Cargo)
Power Diagnostic System I
Small ‘Knave’ I Energy Drain, Qty: 2
Gremlin Rocket, Qty: 32
Cold-Gas I Arcjet Thrusters

Dropped items:

‘Malkuth’ Rocket Launcher I, Qty: 2
Tracking Speed Disruption
Phalanx Rocket, Qty: 3499 (Cargo)
Gremlin Rocket, Qty: 32
Warp Disruptor I
DDO Photometry I Targeting Interference
Warp Core Stabilizer I

MasterGladiator had time to get a fair few licks in before the Merlin went pop, but nothing my shields weren’t handling. I turned off the shield booster so he wouldn’t get discouraged, scrambled him, and got to work. It went pretty fast (the old saw about Destroyers and heavy missiles not mixing remains true). And this one looked to be a mining fit, not a fighting fit:

2008.12.08 18:52:00

Victim: MasterGladiator
Corp: GunSlingerSquad Corp
Alliance: NONE
Faction: NONE
Destroyed: Cormorant
System: [redacted]
Security: 0.7
Damage Taken: 3877

Involved parties:

Name: Marlenus (laid the final blow)
Security: 1.2
Corp: Ironfleet Towing And Salvage
Alliance: Tear Extraction And Reclamation Service
Faction: NONE
Ship: Prowler
Weapon: Caldari Navy Thunderbolt Heavy Missile
Damage Done: 3877

Destroyed items:

Tungsten Charge S, Qty: 2190 (Cargo)
125mm Railgun I (Cargo)
Medium Shield Booster I
Miner II
Small Shield Extender I
Rocket Launcher I
Light Ion Blaster I
Tungsten Charge S, Qty: 72
Phalanx Rocket
Pyroxeres, Qty: 65 (Cargo)

Dropped items:

Uranium Charge S, Qty: 55 (Cargo)
Phalanx Rocket, Qty: 244 (Cargo)
Iron Charge S, Qty: 100 (Cargo)
150mm Railgun I
125mm Compressed Coil Gun I (Cargo)
Monopropellant I Hydrazine Boosters
Small Shield Extender I
Tungsten Charge S, Qty: 120
125mm Compressed Coil Gun I

By now, however, I was genuinely impressed by the creativity and sheer combat spunk these guys were showing me; they were outclassed, but they weren’t giving up. So I complimented them again in local:

Marlenus > Thanks guys, that was a lot of fun. With that kind of combat determination you’ll go far in EVE, I mean this as serious praise

Sad to say, they aren’t such good sports off the field as they are on it.

SPJR > Yeah thats fucked up though pickin on some newbies
Marlenus > Er, you attacked me, remember? There was no “picking on”
SPJR > well you stole from us what you expect us to do just watch
Marlenus > That’s just business. I expect you to defend yourself, which you did quite well, actually
Marlenus > But you might want to reconsider the arrogant smack in local *before* anything has happened to you

No response. Any bets on whether they were receptive to the advice?

I honestly do think these guys (if indeed there are two of them) have a future in EVE. They are right on the steep part of the learning and earning curve right now, but they do learn from their mistakes, they do adapt their tactics, and they have plenty of aggressiveness. Now, if they can only learn not to pointlessly antagonize people, or even (dare I hope?) to remember it’s all just a game, they could go far.

Sorry about the rough language, but it seems I met a Covetor pilot who knew my mother. :(

Jim Bridger here, again.

As a young pod pilot, I developed an unholy fascination with destroyers. One result of this is that I don’t have much experience with my native Minmatar frigates.

Another result is that I’ve got hella gunnery skills. ;-)

The recent technical changes that have made tiny ships a little harder to catch and kill throughout New Eden has given me a new interest in playing with them; hence, the Bantam Of Doom project, from earlier.

The main idea there, of course, was that military experts agree: the Bantam is a useless helpless harmless ship. Making it irresistible, as bait.

Just now, though, I decided to play with a Rifter. This may be the single-most respected T1 frigate in the game; it’s got a reputation as a serious PVP platform, although I think modern tech advances have mostly relegated it to the nostalgic past. But I was concerned, nonetheless, that a Rifter wouldn’t seem harmless enough for my purposes.

Still, I wanted to play with a fitting, so I fitted one out.

On its very first outing, I set up my gun stacking while in warp, and the guns were reloading when I dropped into the first belt. And what to my wondering eye did appear but a big fat Covetor mining barge, and five tiny reindeer. (No, wait, those were Hammerhead drones.)

CCP said they rebalanced medium drones to make them less effective against small targets; I wonder how true that is?

My friendly local Covetor pilot (name of Sideshow Pete, member of Geniality hop [GENIA]) had a jet can out, which I always hate to see; such a hazard to navigation, doncha know?

So I sidled up to the can and flipped it into an Ironfleet can (we have better safety beacons, the ore is much safer now), then commenced to orbit the barge at a handy range.

He targeted me. I returned the courtesy.

His drones began shooting at me. Again, I returned the courtesy, turning on my lovingly-polished artillery pieces.

I also hit the warp scrambler and the afterburner, noting as I did so that his medium drones were MISSING, horribly and completely. (Well, not quite completely; his five drones scored a total of eight hits during the fight, according to the logs.)

The next thing I noticed was that Republic Fleet EMP ammo makes awful short work of a Covetor’s shields. Damn barge melted like snow on a hot skillet. It was almost sad, after all the years I’ve spent watching Marlenus pry those bad boys open the hard way, with a single missile launcher, a hot screwdriver, and a lot of patience.

So my new best friend Sideshow Pete went kaboomski almost before I knew what was happening:

2008.12.05 03:32:00

Victim: Sideshow Pete
Corp: Geniality hop
Alliance: NONE
Faction: NONE
Destroyed: Covetor
System: [redacted]
Security: 0.7
Damage Taken: 4729

Involved parties:

Name: Jim Bridger (laid the final blow)
Security: 0.2
Corp: Ironfleet Towing And Salvage
Alliance: Tear Extraction And Reclamation Service
Faction: NONE
Ship: Rifter
Weapon: 250mm Light Artillery Cannon II
Damage Done: 4729

Destroyed items:

Veldspar Mining Crystal I, Qty: 2 (Cargo)
Survey Scanner I
Plagioclase Mining Crystal I, Qty: 2
Modulated Strip Miner II, Qty: 2
Hammerhead I (Drone Bay)

Dropped items:

Mining Laser Upgrade I, Qty: 2
Plagioclase Mining Crystal I
Modulated Strip Miner II
Plagioclase, Qty: 9461 (Cargo)

The one strip miner is a several million ISK loot item, so that’s the whole ship and most of the modules paid for on the maiden voyage. I can live with that!

Mind you, between the ore I flipped and the ore he dropped, I still had more than half a jetcan to haul home. Normally I’d just whistle for Marlenus and a Bustard, but he’s still down Kaimon way. But I have a dirty little secret, which is that you can’t really stay in Ironfleet if you can’t fly a hauler. So, much as it pains me to admit, I had to jump in a rusty old Wreathe and make about three trips to get the ore home.

Somewhere in all this, I noticed that Sideshow Pete had posted something in local:

Sideshow Pete: “come on”

So I answered, as seemed only polite:

Jim Bridger: “Yes?”

Sideshow Pete: “son of a filthy whore”

I was tempted to respond “Dad? Is that you?” But, I didn’t.

Having espied a Hulk mining into a jet can, I came rumbling out of warp only to find the Hulk newly accompanied by an Orca — the first I’ve spied so far.

OK, so the jetcan is gonna be empty. But hey, what’s my downside? I’d pay good money to put a missile into a flashy red Orca, even though it would be completely futile.

1 unit of Veldspar, as expected.

I took it, just on general principles and to see whether any entertainment might ensue.

Nope, nothing. I went on my merry way.

Then, in local, the Hulk pilot, one Chani Ewans: “Tough luck, shithead.”

I’ve long believed that he who curses first, loses. Did I really “win” by salvaging one unit of Veldspar?

I’ve always considered myself a bit of a “carebear with teeth”, so the “carebear tears” allusion in the title of my new alliance is a slightly uncomfortable fit. But I have long enjoyed collecting good smacktalk from people who have strange ideas about the way peace and harmony ought to rule in EVE — even though it manifestly doesn’t.

So, tonight I was on a routine sweep of my belts when I encountered something I haven’t seen in a long time — a new character mining in a Navitas mining frigate. Normally I’d leave such minnows alone, but this one (Deter Javan) had an annoying corp name (Shoal of the Intrepid Righteousness) and — oddly for a two-week-old character — an alliance tag for an outfit called Integrity Respect Selflessness. Worse yet, he had named his ore jet can something like “Property of the Shoal Of The Intrepid”.

My Suddenly Ninja allies would die of shame if I left this cub unmolested. Besides, he’s well connected, he might have valuable stuff on board and he might decide to “teach the helpless hauler a lesson”. (He is, after all, flying one combat drone.)

So, in I swept in my slightly crunchy blockade runner transport. Click-foom, his can is gone and I’m about 20k units of Scordite the wealthier. All in a day’s work.

What’s this? He wants to talk?

Sure enough, the first miner smacktalk I’ve enjoyed in months:

Deter Javan > was that honestly necessary
Marlenus > Necessary?
Deter Javan > yes
Deter Javan > was it
Marlenus > I dunno, it’s what I do. Is the game necessary?
Deter Javan > no, but you know I pay for it and I’d like to not have my stuff stolen if you don’t mind
Marlenus > Stolen? I’m just salvaging jettisoned ore. I pay too you know.
Deter Javan > it was mine and you know it
Marlenus > It’s mine now, thank you.
Deter Javan > I tagged it and everything
Deter Javan > you’re a fucking dick dude
Marlenus > And I put it in my cargo hold.
Marlenus > No, I’m a *salvager*
Marlenus > And I pick up stuff that others throw overboard
Marlenus > It’s what I do
Marlenus > There are a lot of us, we have an alliance and everything

Unfortunately I lost connection at that point, I’m sure there would have been more.

If there were a “Smacktalk Bingo” drinking game, this player would have scored at least three chugs.

First: “I pay for this game” as a reason why the player should be immune from the activities of other players. Who among us does not pay?

Second: “I tagged it and everything” — the precious idea that putting his name on the can should have caused other players to leave it alone. Is he aware what kind of game EVE is?

Third: Rank profanity. Enough said about that. He who swears first, loses.

No guilt about taking candy from babies this time — because babies don’t have potty mouths.

I think this one speaks for itself:

This will be my final letter and if you dont get it, you never fucking will. In any court in the country, speaking of USA, would every hold me to an agreement under destress. If you are destroying my property and I say I will do anything you say as long as you stop, NO FUCKING COURT ON THE PLANET WOULD HOLD ME TO THAT AGREEMENT!!!!