Monday, December 14, 2009

Cargo Crusader

My Crusader-class interceptor, Hydra, pulled into the light of Stacmon's sun, loaded with spare parts for the logistics ships waiting in my hangar in TXW.  I turned the ship around heading for the Covryn gate instead of the much more often used Ostingele gate.  I tested out my new top speed as my forays into deadspace had finally netted me a 1mn afterburner.

Once on the Covryn gate, a short warp later, I noticed a t1 frig landing next to me, a Tristan.  I shrugged at the time writing it off since nither one of us could engage on a gate and unless I saw him warp to a belt I wasn't about to wander too far off the gates with my current more or less expensive cargo.

I turned towards Cumemare in route to TXW, noticing that the Tristan did the same, warping off a few moments before I did.  I hung around in Covyrn for a few moments trying to locate a rifter I spied on my scanner midway through the warp.

No luck so off to TXW.  Sadly there was nothing of note in they systems leading up to TXW other than this Tristan was headed in the same direction as me, only slightly ahead of me as I had detoured a few times.  In Vestouve I saw him hit and jump into TXW as I was landing on the gate and I hoped he would remain on the TXW gate long enough for my scram to net me a kill on this slow delivery mission.  Or better, engage me!

Jumping through found the Tristan 30ish KM to the side of the Hydra.  I knew he would warp out before I had a chance to tackle him but I wanted to try anyways.  My new afterburners roared to life pushing me up to speed, and the Tristan turned towards me and accelerated.  I loaded Standard S crystals, expecting to have to keep him at some range to avoid his blaster fire while still striking hits of my own.  I was also worried that this would be one of those fights of a t1 cruiser utterly crushing an interceptor because it was fit to do just that.

Inside of 10km Hydra burnt, rockets spewing from the launchers mounted on the Tristan.  My shields fell quickly however my small armor rep pulsed, nearly keeping up with the damage the small frigate was dealing.  I noticed my fire was similarly ineffective on his armor, his rep cycles keeping up with most of the incoming damage.  I knew I had limited time with my lasers, ab, scram, and rep running at full bore before I would be capped out and in serious trouble.

I opted for a tighter orbit, swapping crystals to higher damage imp navy mutlifreq and ducking in much closer, spiraling towards 2,500m noticing for the first time that he was firing rails and rockets and not blasters at me.  Once in close my rep was able to catch up on the damage, while the Tristan was unable to rep my increased damage and likely found his capacitor struggling as well.  The Tristan sunk into structure and just in time as well, my capacitor had only a sliver of energy left, preventing my final cycle of armor repair.  Shield

Had the fight lasted too much longer, or if I had stayed at range, trying to bleed him to death, I most likely would have lost or at least been much closer.

GF's were shared in local, as his pod warped out before I could get a lock.  I complimented him on his setup, rather unhappily, he replied his setup obviously wasn't good enough leaving the system back into lowsec.  Ahh well, my crusader turned happily, snatching what was left of the t2 loot and docked up, delivering it's boring payload.


As an aside, His comment made me think about the attitude of t1 frigate pilots engaging t2 frigates of any type.  Sure (some) T1 Frigates can be lethal to interceptors or even some AF's, however can you really be mad when you lose to one, especially if it is a (sub-par) frig like the Tristan (when compared to killers like the Punisher or Rifter)?

What are you risking, like 8 mil at most for a well fit t1 frig and around 28 mil for a well fit t2 frig of most any kind these days.  Especially the Tristan!  I have long considered that ship more than a bit of crap, the Incursus is a much better choice as far as pvping t1 frigs go. 

Has anyone had any luck out there with the Tristan? 

I still fly Rifters on occasion, especially in lowsec where there is undeniable fun to be had flying agaist cruisers and BC's in lowsec in a vastly smaller ship.  It just seems like with the Tristans split weapon system, single drone and tight fitting that it is a sub-par ship.  If you want to kill a interceptor it is always going to be a close fight unless you get lucky or they are crap.  Especially if they are AB fit and you are not!  He was but still, the point stands.


  1. i dont know, i hate using smaller ships the lack of slots on the imicus and others just draw me away from them, the split system does require more training but it also allows for more variety, i'm not much of a pvper but the tristan should be able to be quiet nasty to just about any ship, properly fit and properly skilled...

    but like i said a split system takes some devotion to getting both the hybrid and the missle skills up to snuff to be decent.

  2. As my roots are Minmatar I know that split weapon type ships are much tougher not only to fit but to fly properly. Especially in the frig class like you said phantam, as their fewer slots make it MUCH harder to fit properly even without split weapon systems.

    I'm already of the opinion, like you that any ship properly fit and skilled is lethal, but only if flown against it's intended target and in the right environment. My question about the Tristan is does it have a niche that can make it above par for engaging t2 frigs or even other t1 frigs. It seems like the Rifter, Punisher, incursus, Kestrel, hell even the merlin would beat it down quickly, though I suppose it would make short work of ships like slashers, Condors, or other even smaller t1 ships. Maybe I just hate the way it looks. :)

  3. Given frigate PvP videos of late, I'm sure this pilot was under the assumption that he could manage a Prometheus Exenthal on you.

    If you don't know what I'm talking about, head to evefiles and search for frigank, and download every freaking one of those vids. Excellent material.

  4. Sard,

    Yeah it has been a long long time since I watched those Video's! re-downloading them now. I was about to say I didn't think he used a Tristan but then I see it in the first video! even so how many did he lose before getting those kills, damn Tristans :)

  5. Honestly, I doubt he's run through as many frigates as you'd think.

    It's a lot easier to bait cocky frigate pilots into fights you've a good chance of winning (range advantage, tank vs ceptors, AB fit vs MWD fit).

  6. I think you are right, I also think he runs into a bunch of terrible pilots, as we all do :) I hope to never be one of them.