Archive for the 'Salvage Notes' Category

Hey, everybody. Sorry for the long silence; I’ve mostly been messing about on the test server (Singularity aka Sisi) trying out the new scanning/probing system and looking at the incoming content.

Until today, I was mostly flying a covert ops ship for the scanning bonuses, so I stayed well away from the actual sites inside the wormhole systems where the new Sleepers spawn. The stories coming back from more intrepid explorers have been rather daunting, with rumors of entire fleets getting wiped.

Of course, given all the free ships on Sisi, the Game Development Forum threads have also been alive with “oh, it’s not hard to solo the easier sites, I went in in my rigged Nightmare and it was cake, especially with my full implant set” reports. Well, bully for you; but when this goes live, I personally don’t have much interest in taking expensive T2 hulls into a gankable 0.0-style hell-death, with no local chat to even tell me if there are enemies in my system. Nope, if I can’t do this in cheap ships, it’s not going to get done by me.

Now, mind you, I’m not against flying with friends; that’s gonna be necessary for most of the new content no matter what you’re flying. But the other feature of W-space (the unreliable and ever-shifting wormhole access) means that no matter who you go in with, you’re likely to wind up alone in the dark. At that point, are you just doomed to wander in a wasteland of pointlessness? Or, will there still be some business a solo pilot in a cheap ship can conduct?

That’s what I set out to discover today, and since nobody else on Sisi seems interested in testing that, I figured I’d just have to do it myself.

So, first, I grabbed a covert ops ship and scanned me down a wormhole. It wasn’t hard; there were no cosmic signatures in my home system, so I jumped one jump over (to another .7 system) and found one. Probing it out took about ten minutes with the new scanning system, which is getting very easy to use while still providing a mental challenge.

After finding the wormhole, I checked its description. It promised to take me to “unknown space”, as opposed to the more dangerous “dangerous unknown” or “deadly unknown” space that are the other two options. Cool! I bookmarked it and went to see what was in my hangar for cheap.

What I found was a gank Caracal, left over from my faction warfare days. 5 T2 heavy missile launchers high, a large shield extender and a medium shield booster middle, and ballistic control units (T2) low. Plus a warp disruptor and some signal boosters. Nothing fancy, nothing special, nothing ridiculously expensive.

Jumped in, went back to the wormhole, jumped through. Used my on-board scanner to find a few cosmic anomalies, did the cancel-warp trick to make their names pop up on the system map. Then warped to them, in succession, at 100km to have a look.

The easiest looking one was a “Frontier Camp” with six sleeper frigates and two sentry guns. I got to work.

The sentry guns hit me hard but variously, in amounts from 200 to 1200 hitpoints each. Their rate of fire, however, was very slow. I was able to pop a frigate before I had to warp out to save my armor — no way to repair my armor in here!

I was using Caldari Navy Scourge missiles, but I only had the ones in my launchers — after that, it was a choice of precision lights (which proved to do less damage) or regular Scourges — which seemed to work just fine and almost as well as the Navy ones.

So I warped out, repaired my shields, let my cap recharge, and warped back in. The site was between two planets, so I came in from a different side each time, giving me a chance to use range against the rapidly-closing frigates. This second time in, the sentry guns were closer and hurt worse; by the time I popped a frigate and warped out, I’d suffered a substantial armor dent. Must be more careful.

Third trip in, I popped two frigates and dented one sentry gun, but there was a new spawn — six more frigs and a cruiser. At this point, I decided to take out the sentry guns, which were a far bigger danger than the ships seemed to be.

That took maybe six more passes before they went down. But after that, it was cake — the frigs dropped easily and the cruiser, easily enough. Then the final wave — three cruisers and a few more frigs — popped.

I had to warp away after popping the frigs and one cruiser, then come back and finish the other two. Interestingly, at no time did any of the Sleeps use any kind of ECM on me; I was never webbed or scrambled. Sleepers DOuse this tech, by all reports, so I either I got lucky, or there are modest and minor sites where they aren’t programmed to do it.

All told, it may have taken me a couple hours to finish playing patty-cake with these sleeper boys, but in the end, the site was done. The wreckage was promising — probably not enough, depending on the final price of T3 parts, to justify the time, but not worthless by any means either. Total loot and salvage (I had to go for a salvage boat) was about 120 cubic meters, breaking down as follows:

22x Reinforced Metal Scraps (refined to 51k trit)

28x Neural Network Salvagers (50k ISK apiece to NPC buy orders on SISI)
8x Sleeper Data Library (200k ISK ea to NPC buy orders)

55x Electromechanical Hull Sheeting (ancient salvage)
2x Emergent Combat Analzyer (ancient salvage)*
1x Heuristic Selfassemblers (ancient salvage)*
27x Modified Fluid Router (ancient salvage)
10x Neurovisual Input Matrix (ancient salvage)
6x Powdered C-540 (ancient salvage)
2x Resonance Calibration Matrix (ancient salvage)*

The three ancient salvage items marked with asterisks have the color of icon we currently associate with the unbroken salvage for making Tech II rigs.

So, what did I learn?

Remember the question I set out to answer: is there Sleeper content that a solo player can beat in a cheap boat? I’d say the answer is, conclusively, yes, even if there’s probably far more content that’s too tough to do this way.

What’s really fun about my answer, though, is that what one cheap boat can do, more cheap boats can do better. Missiles seem to work well against sleepers, but some remote repping would really have sped things up. A couple of T1 logistics cruisers (dirt cheap) and anything else crunchy enough to bring some DPS while buffertanking the worst of the Sleeper DPS should work a treat.

It’s important to remember that all the time I was doing this, I was NOT worrying a whit about who might be sneaking up on me to player-gank me. On Sisi, it’s against the rules, and it doesn’t matter anyway. On Tranquility, it would have been suicide to do what I did — or at least, it would have required a lot more care and attention to my directional scanner. With a gang, you’ll probably have a cloaking prober who stands aside from the combat and keeps an eye out for enemies. In fact, I’m thinking one of my cloaking Prowler blockade runners would be great for this duty — keep a probe launcher in the second high slot, carry reloads for the troops and haul all the loot home, with primary responsibility during combat of maintaining continuous scans for enemy player ships. (A Badger II would work just as well, to be honest, as long as the pilot was willing to stay in continuous motion.)

All in all, I came away enthusiastic for the possibilities. Now it only remains to find out whether the ISK value of the w-space resources makes it worth the trouble.

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!

When I logged out last night, I was in a system with Kudzu (Kinzoku?) sov. This morning? No sov.

I also got a chance to test scooping under POS guns this morning. There was a giant secure can drifting outside a force field, and the gun batteries were not intimidatingly large. So I did a cloaked sneak in on the can, aligned to an exit, uncloaked, scooped, and got the hell out.

I assume the guns were set to fire on everybody, but in the few seconds I was visible on grid, I saw no signs that they were even targeting me.

The can, sadly, was empty — but in Delve, if I want to put it on the market in a Blood Raider station, it’s worth about two million ISK.

The roid belts here, by the way, are so huge and fat that they routinely decloak me when I warp in at 100 km. Please send hulks.

One fun thing I found in one of the belts was an Officer wreck — the empty wreck of Raysere Giant. Do you get Tech II salvage from an officer wreck? I dunno, this is the first one I’ve ever seen. But, reasoning by analogy from the Dread Guristas who sometimes spawn in high sec space, you ought to, right?

It seemed like a subject worth some research.

The problem being, a full spawn of Blood Raider rats. Which means, after about three cycles of my salvager, I have to warp away to lose the agro. Rinse, lather, repeat.

I believe it was my seventh visit to the wreck that finally gave me a salvaging success. And what a success! Salvage yielded:

14x Nanite Compound
10x Power Conduit

Woot! That’s about five million ISK worth of salvage at Jita prices, not that I ever sell TII salvage. At least now I won’t be going home empty-handed.

As mentioned in the last post, I’m increasingly learning — painfully, the way all good lessons are learned — that the changes to blockade runners have changed my ore salvage game in a fundamental way that requires new tactics and fittings on my part.

There’s no way to sugar-coat this, last night I lost a Crane to a bait-fit Osprey “mining” cruiser:

2009.01.30 07:24:00

Victim: Marlenus
Corp: Ironfleet Towing And Salvage
Alliance: Tear Extraction And Reclamation Service
Faction: NONE
Destroyed: Crane
System: [redacted]
Security: 0.7
Damage Taken: 23831

Involved parties:

Name: Lach Danan (laid the final blow)
Security: 3.3
Corp: Firestorm Tactical Industries
Alliance: NONE
Faction: NONE
Ship: Osprey
Weapon: Bloodclaw Light Missile
Damage Done: 21814

Name: Kreatus Lucina
Security: 0.2
Corp: Firestorm Tactical Industries
Alliance: NONE
Faction: NONE
Ship: Retriever
Weapon: Valkyrie I
Damage Done: 2017

Destroyed items:

Caldari Navy Scourge Heavy Missile, Qty: 230 (Cargo)
Shield Boost Amplifier I
Thunderbolt Precision Heavy Missile, Qty: 186 (Cargo)
Medium Shield Extender I
Caldari Navy Thunderbolt Heavy Missile, Qty: 633 (Cargo)
Caldari Navy Havoc Heavy Missile, Qty: 499 (Cargo)
Warp Disruptor I
Ballistic Control System II
Heavy Missile Launcher II
Medium C5-L Emergency Shield Overload I
Guristas Havoc Heavy Missile, Qty: 299 (Cargo)

Dropped items:

Havoc Precision Heavy Missile, Qty: 258 (Cargo)
Havoc Fury Heavy Missile, Qty: 926 (Cargo)
Ballistic Control System II
Thunderbolt Fury Heavy Missile, Qty: 1000 (Cargo)

All due props to pilot Lach Danan of Firestorm Tactical Industries [FTACI]. I’m even more impressed by the FTACI Retriever pilot, Kreatus Lucina, who engaged with his three Tech 1 drones and stuck in there until he was deep in armor. His contribution, though slight in DPS, made the difference in the end.

It happened like this. I’d cleaned up some drifting ore belonging to another pilot, and while that was going down, Lach Danan made a plaintive request for someone to kill a belt rat, alleging that he’d forgotten his drones. Shall we just say that I found the claim suspicious; in my mind, it marked him as a pilot looking for a fight.

Some twenty minutes later, I returned to the belt with Lach Danan’s jet can on my mind.

Crucial mistake #1: I neglected to count how many mining lasers he was running. EVE Lesson: Overconfidence kills. I still don’t know if he was running one (for show) or a full set; but given how events transpired, I’m guessing he fit two at most.

Crucial mistake #2: I didn’t pay any mind to his corpmate Kreatus in the Retriever, who had been hauling home when full, making him irrelevant to my predatory-salvage calculations. EVE Lesson: Every hull in the game is dangerous.

After grabbing Lach Danan’s ore contribution, which was suspiciously modest…

Crucial mistake #3: I took bait. EVE Lesson (again): Overconfidence kills. A mining cruiser who’s been there for half an hour with no observed hauler (even if I didn’t have continuous eyes all that time) should have more than 1500 cubic meters of ore in his jetcan. I knew that, didn’t care. Should have.

… he was quick to lock me, warp scramble me, and web me. It’s kill or be killed, now.

And then he launched Tech 2 combat drones, which commenced to gnaw at my liver.

By the time I had started a lock on Lach Danan’s cruiser, it was already obvious he had more DPS than I could permanently tank, so I loaded the precision missiles and started locking one of his drones. Killing Tech II combat drones with heavy missiles is kinda like hunting rabbits with bottle rockets — you can get it done, but it’s not fast and it’s not efficient and it’s not pretty.

And I’m not going to have the time, especially because that Retriever pilot has joined the fight with his three drones. I can drive him away with just a few missiles, but do I have the time, or do I have to kill at least one of the deadly drones first?

I chose — and I’m still not clear on whether this was right, though I think it was after looking at the damage logs — to kill the drone I was shooting at first. That took a long time, and I was having to cycle my shield booster by then due to limited cap; the armor was dented.

Crucial Mistake #4: Failure to adapt. If you look at that killmail, you’ll see that my four mids were fitted with shield booster, shield boost amplifier, shield extender, and a warp disruptor. I’ve never fitted a cap boosting solution, as most combat hauler pilots do. If I got in trouble, I always just warped away, and I didn’t get into trouble often, so I preferred to save the cargo space for ore. However, now that the blockade runners don’t get two points of innate warp stabilization, the world has changed. Even a small cap injector would have let me win this fight.

So, after killing the first drone, I drove the Retriever pilot away with just a few shots that took him into deep armor. Retrievers are tissue paper.

That took away a bit of damage, and I went back to shooting at the next drone. By this point my armor has gaping holes in it, and I made my last mistake of the fight: I fat-fingered the missile reloading process, which ended up costing me almost twenty seconds, during which I got into structure.

Finally I killed drone #2. Now, at last, the damage is close to sustainable; if I’d still been in armor, I’d have had time to lock and kill one more drone, and I could have won (maybe; I never tested the Osprey’s tank, and he was certainly fitted with combat in mind.) But the twenty seconds I lost was the nail in my coffin, and I went pop.

Interestingly, the Retriever pilot had time to come back during this process, but I’m uncertain whether he had time to dock and repair and restock drones. However, he came back some 40-50 klicks away and never launched any more drones, so he was out of the fight.

But he was there. And I was in my pod, feeling chagrined.

A nice warm cup of REVENGE would sure taste nice about now. Let’s go see what’s in the hangar.

That Retriever on my mind, I jumped in one of my trusty Manticore stealth bombers. I haven’t really flown these since the missile balancing — some say nerf — but the word is, they aren’t so much fun anymore. Let’s test that theory; if I can’t one-volley a wounded Retriever, I’m going to send this thing back to the factory with a stiff note. But, I’ll bet I can.


2009.01.30 07:29:00

Victim: Kreatus Lucina
Corp: Firestorm Tactical Industries
Alliance: NONE
Faction: NONE
Destroyed: Retriever
System: [redacted]
Security: 0.7
Damage Taken: 2983

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: Manticore
Weapon: Caldari Navy Wrath Cruise Missile
Damage Done: 2983

Destroyed items:

Massive Scordite, Qty: 12605 (Cargo)
Small Shield Extender I
Valkyrie I, Qty: 2 (Drone Bay)
Strip Miner I, Qty: 2
Hornet I (Drone Bay)

Dropped items:

Expanded Cargohold II, Qty: 2

Ah, now I feel much better.

How about friend Lach Danan in the crunchy bait Osprey, would he like a taste of my Caldari Navy Wrath Cruise Missiles?

He would! He’s targeting and trying to close to drone range. Cruise missiles away!

I believe it was the second volley that took him into armor, possibly the third; in any case, he changed his mind and left.

At this point, I still had a Tech II wreck on the field requiring salvage, an Ironfleet jet can containing some ore, and a Retriever wreck that needed looting and salvaging. So I went home for the ship I like to call the Iron Crowbar, a Ferox battlecruiser fitted for cleanup work on a hot battlefield.

By the time I salvaged my Crane wreck and emptied my own jet can, Lach was back, in a Manticore of his own. But, he was inside my heavy missile range, and as we traded volleys, he was getting by far the worst of the exchange. So, he left again.

I looted the pair of Cargo Expander IIs from the Retriever wreck, and was starting to salvage it, when Kreatus Lucina returned in his own Ferox, at range. We began trading heavy missiles, but I had superior missile range, and it took him awhile (not long, was he using an MWD on that beast?) to close into his shorter missile range.

Accordingly, I was through his shields and well into his armor when his first, fairly puny, volley of missiles hit my shields. If he had kept that up, he was going to die; but he was still closing and I assume he also had some guns on there. Still, in a one-on-one fight — or even if Lach came back in the Manticore again — it would have been fun to find out.

And THAT’s when a neutral friend of theirs showed up in a Scorpion battleship and went flashy red to me, presumably because he was repping the enemy Ferox. I decided I’d had enough revenge, and docked up.

All in all, a fun run through the asteroid belts, though I’d like it better if I hadn’t lost my beloved Quantum Quagmirer. The boys from FTACI (and their alt or friend in the FTRAD Scorpion) fought well, eschewed all smacktalk, and clearly carried the day, even if I did get my licks in.

There was a guy in local yesterday who was pretty aggressive to Jim Bridger, but never quite got up his courage to engage Jim’s rifter. I spotted him in local again today, and decided to see if he’d go for the “helpless hauler” routine.

He did, and all it took was to relieve him of the two units of ore he was using to keep his jet cans open:

2009.01.17 22:38:00

Victim: Heaven’s Feel
Corp: Center for Advanced Studies
Alliance: NONE
Faction: NONE
Destroyed: Vexor
System: [redacted]
Security: 0.7
Damage Taken: 3573

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: Crane
Weapon: Havoc Fury Heavy Missile
Damage Done: 3573

Destroyed items:

Co-Processor I
Scordite, Qty: 6632 (Cargo)
Miner II
Mining Drone I (Drone Bay)
Hobgoblin I, Qty: 2 (Drone Bay)

Dropped items:

Expanded Cargohold II, Qty: 3
Miner II, Qty: 3
Mining Drone I, Qty: 2 (Drone Bay)
Survey Scanner I
Hobgoblin I (Drone Bay)

Note that all he had on that ship of military value were his drones, so he must have thought my Crane was helpless indeed! Pretty nice drops for a mining cruiser, I can’t complain about that.

As long-time forum readers know, there’s a perennial crop of butt-hurt mission runners who pop up about once a week on the official EVE forums to complain about “salvage thieves” and either (a) claim that salvage is an exploit or (b) demand that the salvage mechanic be “fixed”.

I’ve long maintained a page of handy quotes from the CCP people who have explained that salvage is not theft and is functioning as intended. It’s even in UBB format so that I and others can cut-and-paste into the forum threads, to save time.

Today, one of the software engineers (CCP Prism) made a statement worth updating the page for. It’s a politer version of Ironfleet’s long-standing policy: if it’s not in your cargo hold or your hangar, it’s not yours.

Why is stealing salvage OK?

It’s not.

It shouldn’t even be possible to move an item from your cargo-hold / hanger to another persons cargo-hold / hanger without opening a trade window. Before the salvage enters those containers it is not considered your stuff by the server code. Hence it’s not stealing.

If you’re surprised as to why the server does not consider it your stuff, it’s because it’s a mini profession designed for people who want to roam and look for salvage, not to further increase the revenue from mission grinding. I doubt anyone with a perspective thinks we need to high-sec increase mission grinding any further.

Emphasis added.

Do you ever notice, on all those forum threads about mission salvagers, how the mission runners in their big fat carefully-tanked battleships like to talk about how unfair it is that there is “zero risk” to the people who probe down and salvage their missions?

Well, that hasn’t been my experience.

It seems like every time I go mission probing in a covert ops ship (for the probing speed bonuses) I lose the damn thing and swear I’ll use cheaper ships next time.

Yesterday, I lost a Buzzard to lag in Dodixie.

I’d jump-cloned down that way because my alliance peeps were having a big operation there, but I was too late for most of the party. So I fitted out a covops with cheap gear and started on an ordinance survey of the system; if I’m going to play there, I need a set of probing bookmarks.

My early work with long range probes got me several good hits on mission runners well away from the ecliptic, so the project was a smashing success; with the bookmarks I got, I can now reach almost anywhere in the system that a mission runner is likely to be.

Unfortunately, in the process I found a Dominix battleship sharing a deadspace with a bunch of wrecked Amarr Navy battleships, and three that weren’t wrecked yet. In fact, it looked like the last three were “way over there” and not woke up yet.

I couldn’t ignore all those lovely armor plates, so I started salvaging. And heck, if those battleships wake up, I’ll have plenty of time to warp out when they start targeting me, right?

I forgot I was Dodixie, a mission hub every bit as notorious for lag as Saila was back in the day.

I’m salvaging, three un-agroed battleships on my overview. There’s a noise, as of lasers firing. My screen refreshes. I’m in a pod.

My client, apparently, didn’t bother alerting me to the whole “you’re being locked” part of the process.

It wasn’t really a problem, long run; I got in my free Ibis, put salvagers in the top slots, came back for my loot, salvaged my wreck, finished salvaging the mission, and came out with an Ibis-load of the mission runner’s loot on top of that. In fact, I got so many Armor Plates, I think I may have paid for the ship I lost. But it was annoying.

I had a little bit more fun with the diplomatic contact that resulted from this combat the day before yesterday. You’ll remember that I wasn’t quite sure what the Retriever pilot had done to start flashing red. Well, I got this convo:

Careos Ordo > Hail sir.
Marlenus > Hello, what’s up?
Careos Ordo > I understand we had an incident between our corps in the last few days.
Careos Ordo > It appears to be a misunderstanding, I didn’t want any ill feelings.
Marlenus > Did we? If so, it’s news to me
Careos Ordo > Its on the front page of your site.
Marlenus > Oh. That’s not an incident, it’s just normal business.
Careos Ordo > Not the way we operate.
Careos Ordo > Your ship was accidentally attacked by a drone.
Marlenus > Hmm, I do not believe so. “The logs, they show nothing.”
Marlenus > And the drones were not in space.
Careos Ordo > Well, my pilots assured me whatever happened they meant no aggression.
Marlenus > Hmmm, I must agree that scooping of the drones would seem to support that story.
Careos Ordo > If you loot, that is your way, I will not judge you for that…I just wanted to let you know that there was nothing from our side. I don’t want to start a war.
Careos Ordo > They had kill rights on your man because he had looted a wreck earlier.
Marlenus > No worries, I’m not in the diplomatic loop for my alliance … there’s zero risk of war to you guys from the incident, I’d say
Careos Ordo > They might have been worried the drones would attack, or they did on accident…something.
Marlenus > And I never take offense at getting shot at
Careos Ordo > Interesting business you guys run there.
Careos Ordo > I still don’t know how your indy was able to take out a mining barge.
Marlenus > Heh, that’s actually no secret
Careos Ordo > it is to me, obviously
Marlenus > The blockade runner is not an indy, it’s a transport…
Marlenus > …and it has fitting for a heavy missile launcher
Careos Ordo > oh, my guys reported an indy
Marlenus > It’s basically a cruiser with one gun
Careos Ordo > gotcha.

There was more, but that’s the gist. A perfectly civil, careful diplomatic contact that’s a credit to their corporation. Why am I mentioning it here? Because it underscores what I love about flying the blockade runners. There isn’t an industrial in the game that can launch heavy missiles, but when people see me coming, all they can see is “harmless indy” and it’s an impression so strong, it colors their perceptions even after they’ve flown home in a pod.

Of course, that Retriever would have died just as fast to a well-fit BattleBadger or your basic Iteron-of-Doom; I’m not trying to slight those time-honored (and funny as hell) combat platforms. I’m just saying. People see what they expect to see.

It’s amazing what I find in my hangars, sometimes.

I was down in Nourvokaiken, cleaning out a hangar full of “old junky stuff”. This stuff came from two places. Some of it’s ancient mission loot that I salvaged for a friend in another corp — he’d run the missions and I’d do the loot/salvage duty. Usually I dumped the melty junk into his hangars via contract for his industrial people to refine, but after his corp went moribund, I found a few station containers full in various places that I consolidated in Nourv while I was based there during the early days of Faction Warfare.

The rest of the junk is stuff I hastily salvaged during Faction Warfare. As you can imagine, salvage during battles is very tricky — often I’d just grab the stuff out of wrecks that went floating by, while trying to maintain fleet formation and not be the last guy to warp with the bubble. Usually I inspected the stuff with great interest, but sometimes, I was busy.

So, I was sorting junk tonight. And guess what I found, in an old wooden crate full of miscellaneous battleship guns and broken shell casings?

1x Domination 1200MM Artillery.

In two and a half years of playing this game, I’ve accumulated precisely four faction modules. And yet, somehow I managed to bung this one into my hangar without ever noticing it?

Mind you, I’ve got no current use for this. Maybe Jim Bridger will shoot large arties someday. And I can’t tell how much it’s worth; right now there are two WTB contracts for one up for minor millions, and one guy wants to sell three of them for 225 million total. So that’s the brackets on the price range, somewhere between 15 and 75 million. It’s not a gamechanging find, or anything.

But still, you should have seen my face when I scraped the old grease crust off the nameplate with my multi-tool and saw what I had.

Sometimes the simple pleasures are best.

I was in a system where I don’t have a cloaked Prowler yet, so I was prowling the old fashioned way, in one of my beloved combat Cranes. Found an old-school Covetor mining barge, mining neatly into two numbered jet cans.

They consolidated nicely into one full jet can plus the hold of my Crane.

Covetor pilot left quietly, presumably to get a bigger meaner ship.

So I left too. Came back in an ugly Ferox I like to call the Iron Crowbar. It’s fitted for belt bullying work, to be honest, so it’s a bit LOLwhut for combat. But it looks real mean.

When I got back, the Covetor pilot had returned in a Caracal.

While he was thinking about what to do (in his shoes, I’d have blown the Ironfleet can and left) I put the Ironfleet can on the tractor and began relocating it away from any likely warp-in points. I guess he was too attached to “his” ore to do that.

Instead, the Caracal pilot left, then shortly thereafter logged or left the system.

I went home for a Bustard, which made one quick trip of bringing home the ore. Neat, clean, and profitable!

I’ve been told that salvage in most complexes is nerfed and sucky, and that’s been true in the lower-level ones I’ve seen. But I was in a 3/10 today where the salvage was excellent.

At least, excellent if you count the player wrecks. Most notable was a Minmater Elite Frigate wreck, with Russian name, that gave me nine million ISK worth of T2 salvage (including an incredibly rare Intact Armor Plate) plus three T2 guns and some more useful T2 fittings and ammo. Dude was fitting T2 Power Diagnostics to keep those guns fed, but he was mixing 280mm howitzers and autocannon. Is that ever a good idea?