Wednesday, August 11, 2010

The Rapier who thought he had a Vaga.

Rote has taken a vacation from Syndicate for a bit, and moved up close to Pure Blind, operating out of Saranen.  Recently our activity has been way down, but that is very usual for our alliance as a whole since it is after all summer.

In any case RK has declared war on a few entities down there, currently we are at war with Mostly Harmless.  Up until yesterday I hadn't had enough time or much luck finding any war targets in or around the lowsec area and I was never around for any of our recent gangs, so I headed out to highsec to see what I could find.

One of our members was being "camped" into the top torrinos station by a Rapier, since I was already in Nonni I started heading up that way post-haste, even though I thought for sure the Rapier would be gone by the time my Vagabond made the 6 or 8 jumps out there.

10 minutes later I appeared in Torrinos Local to find the Rapier was still sitting outside the top station and my corp mate, was actually in a travel fit Condor (not much help).  Oh, and there were 7 WT's in local not just the Rapier, a fact that was omitted prior.

I warped to the top station at zero, expecting to have to dock quickly because the rapier was bound to have friends nearby.  As with all Caldari Stations, the dock radius is absolutely MASSIVE, like bump proof, you can't kill me massive.  I decided to stick close to the station while assessing the situation.

Moments after I landed and laid eyes on the Rapier, at a cool 76km from my Rapier a second WT warped back into the station, in a Ishtar.  Now let's just say I have had a few bad piloting experiences ending in near death of my Vagabond regarding Ishtars and leave it at that.  I'm not a fan when someone else is flying them, although as targets go they are far from as deadly as say a properly fit Curse is.  In fact, now I think I could likely take one in a 1 v 1 fight, but with the Rapier there, usually webs + points + sentry drones is going to equal me leaving if I can dock OR a dead Vagabond.

I paced the station wearily, dodging around to the side of the station, putting the Ishtar at a place where it would have to fly around a portion of the station before having a clear shot at me, and placing undocking ships also unable to run right at me.  Using the Station as a blocker can be very useful.

In any case, some of you must be wondering, or not but I am going to tell you anyways, why in a Vagabond, IE a nano boat, I am not afraid of a Rapier.  It's simple, I know two things, 1.  Solo there is no way a Rapier can tackle and kill me unless I just don't fire on him.  2.  I haven't agressed, this is high-sec and we are at a station, he gets me in a sticky spot with backup, and I just undock, and warp away, as I said undock was on the other side of the station.

It must have been right around then that two WT Dominix undock from the station.  My heart rate jumped up a little and then a little more as the range on the Rapier steadily dropped as he approached me.  I returned his lock once he was in range (damn you terrible lock range on the Vaga).  I also decided to open fire, so I aligned out towards another planet, minimizing my transversal to him, while keeping it high between myself and the two Domi.

My barrage M was making short work of his shields and just then he webbed me, at 50km!  Well he must have at least one Faction Web then, crap!  Oh well I guess I was already in this, just as the Domi's both stop moving and drop... Curators.

Why Curators?  Well if I was not a Vaga and just some random shield based ship, yes Curators at their range (around 75-85km) would have been a good call, but against a Vagabond?  Base shield resist of 70% em?  Outside of the curators optimal range...  The Rapier closed in, But I was the one smelling blood.

My point went active at 28km, and he was already in armor.  I thought for sure he would try to burn away, try to disengage, but he just approached closer, shooting past me, 1km/s at less than 500m from my ship.  Carelessly he must have thought getting closer would hamper the tracking of my 220mm guns.  No such luck, his flyby setup his loot perfectly in front of me. When he popped, I looted as I passed and warped off, coming back seconds later for all I had missed.  I guess he had missed the memo that the trap was being sprung on him.  Sadly neither of his faction webs dropped... but at least I got another chunk of nanite paste!

His mates in the domi's scooped drones and warped off and then back to the station, and I was left, briefly, alone.

Shortly thereafter another Vaga, belonging to the Rapier's CEO arrived and started toying with me, revealing to be a HML version, while I was flying the Medium Neut version.  His Fury Scorge missiles hurt at times, but mostly we just played a mutual game of cat and mouse.  Him, unwilling to leave the protective envelope around the two domi's that had once again undocked, Me unwilling to go into the envelope of dominess!

Here are a few sweet tips kids.  You can warp to sentry guns around high and low-sec stations, at varying ranges.  Same goes for cans in space, anchored or not.  Just have to be outside the 150km range of the gun or can you want to warp to.  Using this and a bit of math you can give people hell but not give them time to properly respond before you are already gone.  Torrinos top station has a few cans strewn about it, and a veritable cloud of sentry guns around it.  Using these guns as a reference and the cans as warp out points, never landing at zero mind you, let you get caught for being stupid, I stayed alive, although dipping into low shields numerous times, forcing me to remove myself from the field, still in one piece.

It turned slowly into a fun, but ultimately futile standoff as the Vaga and Domi tried to trick me into range or tackle me to kill me, but were rather unable to do either.  I'll blame pilot skill for that one ;)

I've made sure to save time to go see them again sometime soon.

Now can anyone tell me why that's a terribly fit Rapier? I look forward to it!


  1. I can't reach my Minmatar fitting genius; but I do believe the Quake ammunition is a poor choice.

    Also, and I'm not sure how this can be avoided, the armor plate and polycarbon rigs interact poorly for the overall armor experience.

  2. You've gotten most of it, but there still remains some.

    Quake is a mistake because he came so close to me, obviously hoping the DPS from the Sentry Drones would kill me. While I can understand he was camping the undock, LSE tend to make more sense on a Rapier than Dual Sensor Boosters, or if you are going to Armor tank, make sure your rigs don't reduce armor amount.

    Armor + Nano modules and rigs = fail.