Thukk This: Day Two in The Great Wildlands

So where did I leave off?  Oh yes, docked up in low security space just a jump out of The Great Wildlands Region (GW from here on out).  I logged in to find myself in a low security system with six other players from assorted corporations and alliances.  Pulling up the handy dandy star chart I began to play with the display settings.  First I checked my flight path for ships and pods destroyed in the last few hours.  Negative on that front.  Then I went to pilots in space within the past thirty minutes.  Two jumps into 0.0 there was a system showing a dozen pilots active in space. 

Knowing that I should expect some sort of a reception, but naively confident in my cloaking frigate, I set off for the unknown for a second time.  So I guess it isn’t actually unknown as I had been there the day before and it appears on star charts, but it feels like setting off to some grand adventure.  Yes it was only a few jumps into a back woods 0.0 region.  Ok. 

The first system was deserted and I again warped to a safe spot scouted out the day prior and deployed probes.  A combat site and a hacking site were soon pinpointed and bookmarked.  Not that I could safely do either in my current setup, however the bookmarks would function as temporary safe spots.  They were not far enough off of the grid to be considered deep safe spots by any means. 

Next system was the one showing all of the activity.  No gate camp awaited me and I again warped to a safe spot set the day before.  I decided not to deploy probes so as to not expose my location in the least, nor did I want to antagonize the local powers that be should we ever want to make a diplomatic push for access to this region.  Numerous wrecks were appearing on the overview.  The players seemed to be running a plex as a grang, as the belts were all deserted save for their faithful Angel defenders.  Perhaps the 8/10 plex that I located the day before had respawned, and was now being cleared by these players. 

I again checked the star map for any activity and set my course for the system that was adjacent to the systems with the NPC stations.  The two closest NPC station systems were showing as 40 and 80 pilots online and active.  I had my doubts that any were friendly.  Two more empty systems greeted me with open arms.  I got my first view of a “Shattered” planet type that was fairly impressive and I soon arrived at my destination. 

This system was not empty.  One other player sat in the system with me and I was unable to pinpoint his location.  No wrecks were appearing in my directional scanner so I assumed he was not here ratting or running a complex of some type.  Taking out the combat scanner probes I soon covered the system in scans while I looked for the location of this elusive neighbor of mine.  Nothing.  Somewhat discouraged, I warped in at 100 clicks off of the gate to the more crowded NPC station and just sat there cloaked for a few minutes while I slowly moved away from the gate.  My goal was to set a bookmark around 160 km off of the gate for a quick warp in point.  

The gate fired.  Local chat added a third player to the system and my attention was focused on the gate while I waited for the player to warp off to some unknown destination.  A Drake came into sight and was aligning away from the gate.  Like clockwork, a Hound stealth bomber popped into existence between myself and the gate.  The Drake pilot was warp disrupted and taking damage faster than I had ever seen.  Both pilots opened fire on each other as the Drake was not going to back down.  The Drake went down extremely quickly under the fire of the bomber, the Hound pilot stood victorious and even managed to pop the guy’s pod.  Another round of torpedoes set out from the bomber and vaporized the wreck.  The Hound aligned out and warped towards a nearby planet, leaving only the frozen corpse of his victim as grim proof of the deadly brawl.  This pilot’s corporation description listed them as an NRDS corp.  Was the Drake truly an enemy or was the Hound pilot an opportunistic killer?  

Another hour of scanning went by and even more sites were identified and bookmarked for later use as safe spots.  I was highly impressed with the number of sites available out in GW.  No doubt the aggressiveness of the locals keeps the PVE population to a minimum.  Thus, I brought my small tour of upper GW to an end and set my course for home and went back the way that I came.  Again empty systems greeted with me with perceived safety, all the way until that one system with the gang in it that I had run through earlier. 

The star map still listed a decent number of folks online and in system.  Surely they would be done with their plex by now.  As it was a Sunday mid-day US time, it was more or less EU prime time and these players might be up to something.  I jumped into the system and found it clear of any camps on this side.  Warping to a safe spot, I again found nothing on my directional scanner on this side of the system.  

I warped in at 100 clicks from the outbound gate and was greeted by what I had long suspected; a 0.0 gate camp complete with a warp disruption bubble.  The bubble was positioned in direct alignment from the gate that I had entered the system through and the outbound system towards Empire.  Had I not warped to a safe spot and then to the gate, this story would have a different outcome.  As it were, I slowly made my way towards the gate over several agonizingly long minutes and jumped through.  

The campers were setup about 15-20 km from the gate with interceptor support.  They could pursue if they choose.  On the other side was a lesser gate camp with the same group.  There was a Hurricane battle cruiser with a Stiletto interceptor.  The Stiletto was orbiting EXTREMELY close to where I had arrived in system.  He was within 5 km from me and changing distance and approaches rapidly.  Much too close for my comfort as he only needed to come within 2 km from me to drop my cloak and introduce my hull to his auto cannons.  

I found a moon in the system that was nearly dead center in front of me.  My align time with this frigate coupled with the cloaking device should make me difficult to catch.  I hit warp to 50 km and then slammed the cloak button as soon as my ship began to drop my warp in cloak.  Somehow the Stiletto never even targeted me. One jump later and I was back to the relative safety of Empire.

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~ by Centuri on October 1, 2009.

2 Responses to “Thukk This: Day Two in The Great Wildlands”

  1. Gratz on successfully running both sides of the camp!

    And a bomber took out a Drake? Did the Drake not have drones or something? Wow.

  2. I wish I remembered either of them’s names to look up the kill mail. The Drake went down superquick. I have seen some impressively tanked Drakes in FW that held againt several attackers.

    Maybe the Drake was already damaged from a fight on the other side…who knows.

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