Wednesday, 18 February 2009

Yes, another post about Interceptors!

So there I was.

Criminally Flagged, in a Rapier, in Mara, looking for something to shoot. Mara is the place us pirates go when we feel like a party. Its kinda like Amamake but with better Music.

Hitting the refresh button on my scanner every two seconds was starting to make my fingers ache. There was plenty of targets, but they were either sitting near gates (yuk, sentry guns) or cloaked just like I was. I was about to give up, and dock up for the night when something caught my eye.


I'll never be able to catch that I thought, checking the Pilots records I saw he was quite experienced and from the Veto Corporation. He probably wouldn't be caught unless he wanted to. Hmm, he wouldn't engage a Rapier, even if I sat in the first asteroid belt, uncloaked, and started Mining. So what would he engage?

My mind wondered to the 3 Claws still sitting in my hangar. He almost certainly go for one of those. So I rushed back to Passari, docked up and got into the nearest Claw and then headed back to Mara.

I had that feeling you get just as about combat is imminent. I knew the Crusader wouldn't be able to resist and jumping through the gate back to Mara i rubbed my hands together and got ready to savour a good old fashioned 1v1 interceptor fight "Just like old times" I thought.

I aligned my ship to warp out when I heard a Almighty thud, followed by loud crash. I was being attacked? by what exactly? "CRACCCKKKKK" I saw the tip of my left wing shatter, out the corner of my eye.

"WARP DAMIT!" , I punched warp button on the console, still not knowing what was going on. Luckily I was in a Claw, and they can warp out of bad situations like this pretty fast assuming they ain't scrambled. I entered the warp tunnel and sat back in my chair.

What the hell was that? I checked my ships database for recent aggression and it turns out the person who had been trying to destroy my ship belonged to the Caldari Navy. Hmmmm.... ohhh! then it clicked. Of course. I was Criminally Flagged and the Caldari navy don't like criminals, I don't know why, they are just very touchy about it. Anyway I had been shot by the sentries and my ship was in a pretty bad way, but at least I had survived to laugh about it later on.

Checking the scanner again, the Crusader was still there and he appeared to be looking for me. I watched him warp from Planet to planet trying to find me to no avail.

I sat in my Safe spot, fuming over my stupidity. If I had just waited a few more minutes my ship would be in a fight right now. I couldn't engage now as all my armor had been blown off and engaging a fresh Crusader would just be throwing my ship away. So I sat there waiting, and waiting until my new criminal timer ran out. Hoping that maybe the crusader would stick around until I could get back to the station and repair my ship.

Sure enough as my timer expired the crusader was still zipping around, so I jumped into Passari and went back to the station, repaired my ship and headed back to Mara. I jumped in, checked the local Comms channel (that shows all the pilots in the system) and the Crusader pilot had gone.

Dammit. I sat there a moment trying to decide what to do. Veto were also a pirate cooperation that lived nearby, just a few jumps away in fact, in Ishomilken. Maybe the Crusader pilot had gone back to his home station, and maybe if he saw me in local would want to fight again. However he would probably have friends as it was his home system after all. But caution was never a trait I did possess and I felt cheated out of a good fight. So I set a course for Ishomilken and arrived there a few minutes later.

Just as I thought, the crusader pilot was there, so I quickly warped to the nearest planet and waited again for the crusader. Watching scan, for a while nothing happened. When suddenly a Sentinel appeared on scan. Checking the name of the ship i saw it was the same pilot who had been in the Crusader.

Sentinels are generally a no-no for interceptors, as they use energy neutralisers and tracking disruptor's. Both bad news for a claw as you cant use your Microwarp drive, and they ruin the tracking of your guns. On top of all that they use light drones, which eat interceptors alive.

The Sentinel didn't hang around and soon landed at the planet a little bit away from me. I was going to warp out there and then, but then I remembered how cheated I felt, missing a cool 1v1 interceptor fight and figured Id make the veto guy pay. Id fly around just outside his drone range and tease him until he couldn't take anymore. Then maybe he would go fetch his Crusader again.

So that's what i did, and when I saw the Sentinel warp to the station I clapped my hands together and thanked the EvE gods for being so kind. And I promised to sacrifice a small goat when I get back home. I warped to the station and waited for the Veto pilot to undock and I jumped out my chain when i saw a Crusader appear on my overview.

I quickly locked and tackled it without even thinking and activated my guns. The other crusader pilot didn't seem surprised and I watched as he did the same and started firing back . My shield disintegrated almost instantly, and my armor started to take damage. But my claw was well armored and took all the Crusader could throw at it. Meanwhile my 200mms, were chewing through his armor at an alarming rate and soon his structure. He exploded while I still had most of armor left and I started to lock his pod when I noticed something strange on my overview.

A sentinel?

Wait... I just killed this guy. What the hell was going on? I forgot the pod and quickly warped out and checked the kill mail I received from Concord. And to my surprise the Crusader pilot was actually a different pilot all along, tho he was also from Veto. Maybe they had tried to double team me?

Regardless, I was happy, I came for a Crusader kill, and got one, even tho it wasn't the guy I intended to kill. I warped to the gate to leave and noticed I was being followed, by the Sentinel and the guy I had just blown up. This time he was in a Iskhur and obviously wanted some revenge.

I couldn't take both of them so I quickly made my way back home. And being lighter and more agile I made it without any problems. I docked up at my station and couldn't help feeling an ounce of shame for running away so quickly without really thinking it through.

Maybe I could have lured one of them away from the other and got a second kill? I sat there for a second, and reminded myself I got what I went for and that was a Crusader kill mail. But the voice in the back of my head told me to go back and fight.

Its a very persuasive voice, and extremely hard to resist. The things its made me do, I cant write here as children might be reading, but suffice to say they ain't pretty.

So I had one half of me telling me to dock up for the night, and the other half telling me to go back to Ishomilken. Obviously, being the mentally unstable type I undocked and headed back to Ishomilken and began to look around for the Sentinel Pilot.

I knew the chances were, if he caught me, Id probably lose my ship. But at the time I didn't seem to care. Once I go looking for a fight I usually either get one or get blown up trying to win against impossible odds. I remember the time I tried to solo a Rapier, Rook, Vulture and a Zealot in my Drake (that's a story for another time). It was the same voice now, as it was then.

Anyway, I warped around looking for the sentinel. He seemed to be doing the same and it was like we kept missing each other. Until eventually we landed at the exact same time right near each other. "Here goes nothing" I thought.

He was about 20km off and I burnt towards him. He tried to keep distance but my ship was alot faster. I caught him pretty quickly and activated my warp scrambler, shutting of his Microwarp drive. He launched his drones and I began to hear them start tearing chunks out my ship. I heard the sound of an energy neutraliser and watched as my screen started flashing about how I had low power. My microwarp deactivated as I didn't have the power to run it. But my scrambler was still working, barely. I opened fire and to my suprise the tracking on my guns seemed fine.

Why wasn't I Tracking disrupted? I watched as my guns tore through the other guys ship with striking ease, and it wasn't long before he was scrambling away in his escape pod. I sat there a moment dumbstruck. I had been running from the sentinel for a while now and it turns out he wasn't fit as most Sentinel pilots do.

Afterwards we had a small chat about fittings, and his fit was more of a gang tackler fit. He seemed friendly enough, and I almost felt bad about blowing him up. But he was OK about it, and I know he would of done the same to me if he had the chance.

I made my way back home again (uneventful trip), once again impressed by interceptors and wondered why I ever stopped flying them in the first place. They are a hell of a lot of fun to fly!

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