Wednesday, July 04, 2018

Whatever Happened to Kirith Kodachi?

Last winter at work we had a Hackathon where we were given a day and a half of work time to build something, anything we wanted (preferably as an extension for one of our products) and then show it off the next day where a bunch of managers and product owners would score them. There were 17 presentations and my hackathon entry was one of them.

Various awards were given out, like Best Overall, Most Practical, etc and I was very proud to win the Why Haven't We Done It Yet award. I can't tell you what I did for reasons, but it was amazing cool, trust me.
Came with a Duck Trophy because reasons.

But the big thing is that the products owners and managers each got to award one week worth of team development effort to a hackathon idea they liked, and my project was awarded one of those development weeks. I was pleased as punch, I went around calling myself an award winning developer for months (jokingly).

Anyways, that promised week came around late last month and I've been hustling with my team working on making that hack sing (and its fucking working so nice, OMG, so proud) but that has taken all my free time and effort as I make this baby bloom. Coupled with end of school year activities, Canada day celebrations, and generally just trying to keep on top of everything and EVE time and blogging has suffered the most.

Hence the radio silence, but good news, the end is almost near and its time to get back on the space horse.

See you in space!

Thursday, June 21, 2018

Piper Came Calling

Four years ago, when I was first getting into capital ship construction with Orcas, I had a business arrangement with another industrialist who sold me Orca and component BPCs while I was building up my collection. He got burnt out and lent me multiple researched BPOs for my usage while he took a break.

After two years of using them and not being reminded they were loaners I started treating them like my own property. I got out of Orca building, moved into capital ships, and I didn't need some of the blueprints anymore... but I did need some ISK for new blueprints. So I sold them.

Fast forward to last month when I get an evemail from my old associate saying "Hey, remember those blueprints I lent you? I'm back in game and looking to start up production again!"

Oh crap.

Some of the blueprints I had and could just return, but four of them I needed to buy off contracts and they were not cheap! Since the blueprints were "owned" by me and not the corporation, I had to sell my personal shares back to the corporation for ISK to buy the contract to give back to the real owner, costing me out of pocket roughly 10-12 billion ISK.

For investors, there is no cost to the corporation since the ISK for those blueprints did not have to come out of the wallet. Liquid ISK went down, but that is about it.

Well, there is the pesky problem that I no longer have the complete set of BPOs for cap production...

Next week I'll get around to the late corporate audit and the next steps for the corporation.

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Eagle Has Landed

After the failure of the Navy Vexor I opened up the ship simulator and put together an Eagle Heavy Assault Cruiser fit and sent it off to my Acquisition Manager to retrieve it for me.

[Eagle, Pharlap]
Magnetic Field Stabilizer II
Magnetic Field Stabilizer II
Assault Damage Control II
Tracking Enhancer II

Large Ancillary Shield Booster
50MN Microwarpdrive II
Large Shield Extender II
Stasis Webifier II
Adaptive Invulnerability Field II
Optical Compact Tracking Computer

200mm Railgun II
200mm Railgun II
200mm Railgun II
200mm Railgun II
200mm Railgun II

Medium Anti-EM Screen Reinforcer I
Medium Core Defense Field Extender I

Hobgoblin II x5

Caldari Navy Antimatter Charge M x1430
Navy Cap Booster 200 x42
Tracking Speed Script x1

I went with 200mm as the 250mm are more power hungry and I don't think needed for this use case, and I threw a Medium Ancillary Shield Booster more of as a crisis responder than a constant tank. I tried a couple Tier 2 "agitated" abyss pockets and it completed them successully, but not easily. The main problem is not the tank, which held up just fine, but the enemy ships that got under my guns (i.e. closer than 10km) and even with the web I could not track them which meant either sending my drones out to engage and watching for them to switch targets to them, or turning on my MWD to speed away from them and lower the transversal as they gave chase.

But by god, watch out for that terrifying red grid of the edge of the pocket.

A solvable problem, but frustrating.

I feel like missiles would be a more flexible solution so I'm considering trying this fit for a Cerberus:

[Cerberus, **Abyss Cerb]
Ballistic Control System II
Ballistic Control System II
Ballistic Control System II
Assault Damage Control II

50MN Cold-Gas Enduring Microwarpdrive
Adaptive Invulnerability Field II
EM Ward Amplifier II
Large Shield Extender II
Large Shield Extender II

Heavy Missile Launcher II
Heavy Missile Launcher II
Heavy Missile Launcher II
Heavy Missile Launcher II
Heavy Missile Launcher II
Heavy Missile Launcher II

Medium Anti-Explosive Screen Reinforcer II
Medium Anti-EM Screen Reinforcer II

Warrior II x3

Scourge Fury Heavy Missile x2000
Scourge Precision Heavy Missile x2000
Caldari Navy Mjolnir Heavy Missile x5000
Caldari Navy Scourge Heavy Missile x5240
Nanite Repair Paste x100

Less drone firepower, but the missiles should still apply damage on the close frigs. I think.

I'll try the Eagle a few more times before switching though.

Thursday, June 07, 2018

Not Exactly As Planned

Since my Eagle got blown up coming out of an Abyss site I switched to an old Caracal I had sitting in the hanger (that's a theme by the way, I have so many old ships just sitting around) and tried some more sites in it to mostly success.

The fit:

This has decent tank, nice range, and a couple drones for extra frig killing. After I took that picture and posted it on Twitter, I realized the disruptor was a waste of space and swapped out for a Medium Ancillary Shield booster for that extra protection.

And except for one time I let a rogue drone battleship get to close its had very little problems with various types of Tier 1 Abyssal sites, getting me some decent low level Abyss loot.

However, the goal was never to stay in Tier 1 so I decided to get a go at a Tier 2 site. So I grabbed a 4 year old Vexor Navy Issue from Bring Me The Head of Kirith Kodachi III event and a Tier 2 filament and headed out.

[Vexor Navy Issue, Kirith Kodachi's Vexor Navy Issue]
1600mm Rolled Tungsten Compact Plates
Damage Control II
Drone Damage Amplifier II
Drone Damage Amplifier II
Energized Adaptive Nano Membrane II
Energized Adaptive Nano Membrane II

10MN Afterburner II
Faint Epsilon Scoped Warp Scrambler
Warp Scrambler II
X5 Enduring Stasis Webifier

Small Gremlin Compact Energy Neutralizer
Small Gremlin Compact Energy Neutralizer
Heavy Electron Blaster II,Antimatter Charge M
Heavy Electron Blaster II,Antimatter Charge M

Medium Trimark Armor Pump I
Medium Trimark Armor Pump I
Medium Trimark Armor Pump I

Ogre II x5
Warrior II x15

"Surely," I thought, "a faction cruiser will be more than enough to handle Tier 2!"

Well, I was wrong.

So I made several mistakes, and learned some lessons. First, I should have went after the escorts first and not the battleship as it turns out they were repairing all the damage. Secondly, a ship with drones as the main damage is not ideal as there are many structures that love to mass attack your drone wings, plus the NPCs will switch to them as well. Finally, a tank that does not recharge itself and is passive only will be a problem if I make mistakes; active tanks are more flexible in these situations.

Laziness got me this loss, so having learned that I am setting out for building a ship from the ground up to continue my tier 2 and higher adventures. Stay tuned.

Friday, June 01, 2018

Dipping into the Abyss

I finally got some time to get into the new content last night and I snuck into EVE and prepared to go Abyss diving.

First off what ship to use? I had a slew of old ships in the hanger but since I used to run level four missions way back in a railgun Rokh, I felt nostalgic and grabbed an Eagle I never had a good use for and refit it for diving into pockets. 

Here's the fit:
We'll talk more about why its a killmail later.
The ship has a decent shield buffer, a booster for emergencies, optimal range around 44 km with antimatter. Judging on what I read it was vast overkill for tier 1 and 2 pocket rats, but I didn't want to go too small at first since I'd done no diving on Singularity.

I went on the market in Dodixie and paid a heavy price for 5 Calm gamma filaments. These types of pockets were tier 1 and gave a boost to ships' shield strength. I wasn't taking any chances here.

I did my diving from low sec (since I can't go safely into high sec, natch) and did five dives. Lost some drones here and there as I learned about the structures that automatically targeted "rogue automata" and a couple times activated the shield booster, but for the most part I had no trouble at all in the sites and completed them in 10-15 minutes easily.

In five sites I picked up 6 more filaments, three calm (tier 1) and three agitated (tier 2), some Cystalline Isogen-10 and Zero-Point Condensate used in manufacturing of the Abyss ships and modules, a Medium disintigrator (cool!), and three Decayed mutaplasmids (which is the lowest quality of four types), a medium shield booster, x-large shield booster, and a small shield extender.

On the return from the fifth dive, there was a hostile Magus waiting for me. And to make matters worse, there was a null sec fleet going on and I didn't want to call for help to distract from that null doing important things. I tried to give the Magus a run for his money by targeting his drones and after a while he was running low on them and I knew he would never break my tank at this rate, but I also knew I had no chance of shaking him off or killing him and I wasn't going to call for help. He, however, had no issue calling for backup and two battleships arrived to finish me off. Oh well, #SpaceRich.

Back in station, I decided to use the mutaplasmids to see what I could build:

The Medium Shield booster turned out nice, small shield extender is a bit of a bust, and the X-Large shield booster got really hit hard in the powergrid usage department for modest gains in performance.

Overall I had fun, and plan to run some more once I get a new ship ready and get an alt equipped to back me up for when I come out.

Friday, May 25, 2018

Welcoming the New Triglavian Overlords

Into the Abyss will include the Damavik Frigate, the Vedmak Cruiser, and the Leshak Battleship. These will be supported with a full line of small, medium and large Entropic Disintegrators as well as Entropic Radiation Sinks to upgrade their damage and rate of fire. New ‘Precursor’ skills will be required to make use of this hardware, and those skills can also be found in Abyssal Deadspace.
So things to find in Abyssal space:
- ship blueprints (frigate, cruiser, and battleship)
- entropic disintigrators blueprints (light, heavy, and "Supratidal")
- entropic radiation sink blueprints
- skillbooks

The prereqs for the skillbooks do not look too intense on Singularity right now and I believe that will carry over to Tranquility.

In the dev blog they talk a bit about the weapons:
On release, the maximum charge amount will be 150% or 2.5x the base damage on the turret. To get an idea of what that means, the Leshak Battleship will easily push out over 2500 DPS at full charge. The time it takes to reach full charge will vary, but you can expect a time around 80 seconds for the Frigate, 120 seconds for the Cruiser, and 140 seconds for the Battleship thanks to its rate of fire bonus. 
This massive damage potential is balanced by the fact that weapon deactivation, for any reason, resets damage to the base amount. Deactivation could happen because of direct disruption, such as ECM, but range also plays a huge role. Unlike other turrets, Entropic Disintegrators have no falloff range and they deactivate immediately if the target leaves optimal. Range control will be critical when dealing with Triglavians, whether you’re the pilot or the opponent. 
The last must-know for Disintegrators is that they only use one turret hardpoint. Consequently, Triglavian ships enjoy several utility high slots which can be used for a range of purposes. You will see NPC Triglavians favoring remote armor repair, but players may choose energy warfare, smartbombs, or exploration equipment.
 And at the end of the blog:
We expect Triglavian ships to be especially powerful in environments where targets go down slowly. This includes small gang, Factional Warfare, and especially wormhole engagements. We also expect to be surprised with player innovation, as always, and to make sure those surprises don’t get out of hand, we’ve already set aside time to make follow-up balance adjustments shortly after release. 
Looking even further down the line, we intend to flesh out the Precursor skillset with more ships and weapons that push the boundaries in EVE combat. We hope Triglavians set the stage for what’s possible going forward and we hope you enjoy these powerful new options in the capsuleer arsenal.
I can definitely see value for these ships and weapons in small gangs coming up against a target with a big tank; hold them for a couple minutes until the entropic disintigrator hits full charge and then begins to melt them. But we will have to wait and see if the ship has the survivability, mobility, and utility to make the wait for the weapon worth it.

Diving into the abyss in 4 days!

Friday, May 18, 2018

More Thoughts on Abyssal Space

As the pressure of a busy spring begins to fade, and I am finally recovered from two weekends in a row camping in the woods with hordes of crazy kids and not enough blankets (I swear, I slept so poorly I swear my face felt like it was melting last Sunday), my interest in the upcoming Into the Abyss expansion for EVE grows.

Beautiful, but chilly.
I'm glad that CCP is looking closely at the effects of mutaplasimds on potentionally overpowered modules, but I still have concerns that large coalitions will weaponize statistics to overcome the randomness. Call me cautiously optimistic on that point.

I'm looking forward to diving into Abyssal space and trying it out, the design decision to limit it to cruisers only is a good idea as it makes it easier to balance the content against a single class of ships rather than all battleships, strategic crusiers, HACs, Mauraders, etc.

On the industrial side, I might look into becoming a builder of the new Triglavian ships if the build requirements are not too crazy and getting the BPCs frequently enough is possible. Might need another Raitaru for ship production!

Speaking of the industrial side of things, the 6th month May audit is coming up in the last week of May. I'm currently building a Fortizar as a test experiment with an eye into finding someway to secure a Fortizar BPO in the future. Have to keep dreaming.

See you in the Abyss!

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