Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Eyes on the wormhole will not save you, Part 2

In my last post I covered about a Paladin kill that had eyes on the wormhole, but did not see a gank coming from within inside.

While Paladin is a nice kill, it was not that shiny as I'd hoped. It seems population of EVE is getting "smarter" and does not pimp their ships unnecessarily anymore. A ship with t2 mods gets the shit done just as well. Good for them, bad for the hunters. It was time to look around. My visit in this wormhole had served it's purpose, now I needed to see what's out there. I began scanning, starting with low-sec connection.

Low-sec has 3 wormholes and all of them are c3. Perhaps one of them will have something going on or at least will be a potential new home to stalk in. I finish mapping and go in. I immediately get my interest up. There are sleeper wrecks on scan. I move and cloak up to investigate situation further, but...

...I immediately get greeted in local. My Russian is not the best, but I believe he asks "what are you looking for?".  In other words, the guy is declaring that I have been spotted and that they have eyes on the wormhole.  All hopes for surprise attack are gone. Or are they?

Since they know I'm here I decide not to stress too much and calmly look around. By playing with d-scan, I find out that wrecks are generated by a Tengu and that he is at some signature. Despite them knowing they have guest, Tengu continues shooting sleepers.

He probably is feeling safe, in that signature of his. I can't get to him without combat probes and he is probably spamming that scan button like a mad man. But what do I have to lose? I warp to the outer planet and drop my probes.

I am an experienced prober. It's a must have skill if you are hunting and want to be successful. Not all targets are found at the anomaly and sometimes you have to scan them out to get them. Here's mini guide of combat scanning:

I warped to a closest celestial to that Tengu. Changing the distance, I deducted that he is approximately 2 AU. I then pinpointed his direction to 5 degree angle. Once I had distance and direction, I moved probes to be exactly in the center to where I am looking through the map layout and still get a 5° angle hit. Do not forget to focus your present location, in my case - the planet.

I double check that distance is approximately 2 AU by holding alt and selecting central probe to see outer lines. If edge of central probe's bubble at 2 AU is reaching the planet then position is good. I then decrease range to 1 AU and click scan. I probably could get a hit at 0.5 AU, but it has very small margin for error, so I hope 1 AU will be enough to get a return of 100%. Scanning is in process and as soon it is over I recall my probes, regardless if I get a warpable hit or not. Minimizing visibility time for probes is the key, In this case, I am successful.

Had I not had a 100% hit, I would have repeated whole process again, only this time I could see his approximate position and adjust accordingly. I don't get too excited. Remember, they know I am here and I expect this Tengu to be gone off the grid by the time I come. But he does not, he continues with the site.

Shit's about to get real. I make a position bookmark and quickly warp my Domi fleet into position. Well, quickly might be a strong word.

Wormhole is bloody 125 AU away. It will take my battleships two minutes to get into position. Good news are: they don't have eyes in low-sec system. Otherwise, if a cloaky Proteus didn't make Tengu stop farming, three Navy Dominixes would surely ring some warning bells. Once my fleet lands, I make my move.

It takes awhile for fat potatoes to align and warp. Meanwhile, Tengu and sleepers are dishing out a lot of pain.

Finally Domi fleet lands and heavy neutralizers and drones get to work. Once the juice runs out, strategic cruiser goes down.

A combination of shiny and t2 mods. Probably would be over a billion worth of killmail, had price of deadspace shield boosters not tanked. Regardless, it's a good kill and I thank Bob for granted opportunity. Nothing more rewarding for a hunter, than a successful kill, shiny or no shiny. I loot and shoot the wreck and get out. Day later, I receive the following mail:

As I thought, Tengu pilot did not think he was in danger as he couldn't see combat probes. That is why it is so important not to have probes out for more than one scan cycle. With a little bit of luck and good timing, you can catch your prey by complete surprise even if they do check d-scan rather actively.


  1. Maybe you could think about recording a gank or two and put it on YouTube? I'd love to see how you manage your spider tank but I also understand if you want to keep that under op security. ;)

  2. There's nothing magic or secret about spider tanking :). Just swap windows and lock my fleet ships (overview set to friendlies only if more than few enemies present). Once locking process started, go through all windows again and set cap transfer to domies and reps to whoever needs it. It's a mess and takes time getting used to, but interesting idea on the video. I'll try to take a look at it.