Saturday evening I got a rare break due to family visiting and I snuck up to the computer room and played Eve for an hour.
Last time I played I discovered that capturing (aka capping) a Minmatar complex in a Minmatar system meant no rewards, so this time I decided to continue playing defence and attempted to investigate a contested Minmatar system. Contested means that Amarr players have been in the system and capped (or started to cap) at least one complex.
I flew to Helgatlid as it was contested but still off the beaten path. There was no war targets or beacons in system so I started flying to every planet and scanning for complexes but after 12 planets, no so much as a peep. Maybe I'm doing it wrong?
A little confused, I resolved to fly towards the front lines and check things out as I go along. I've been deep in the Minmatar zone so far to avoid too much action when I don't have enough time to play, but perhaps it is what I must do, head into Amarr territory for the rewards I am looking for.
Along the way in Orfrold I see two beacons in the overview; one for a Minmatar Outpost which my trusty Vexor El Cheapo can't get into and the other for a Minmatar Major Stronghold which anyone can enter. I warped to the larger class complex as I'm very curious to what I will find.
There's no acceleration gate, but a lot of NPCs of the Minmatar persuasion and they leave me, a member of their loyal militia, alone. I see the bunker has an Amarr symbol next to it and a couple minutes on its timer. Apparently some Amarr players tried to take this complex for a minute or two but decided to leave; either something better came up, the NPCs scared them off, or militia members spooked them. Whatever, I decided to see what would happen if I reversed the Amarr control and capped the complex for Minmatar.
It would take over 20 minutes of staying within 20 km of the bunker, so I had some time to chat up the militia channel and ask some questions about defending contested systems. Apparently what you need to do is scan for complexes captured by the Amarr and recapture them before the system becomes vulnerable from all the Amarr captures. So I was doing it right in Helgatlid, I was just unlucky that no complexes where in that system yet.
I finished capturing the Minmatar Major Stronghold and I received the message that no reward was forthcoming for capturing something still controlled by them already. Oh well, live and learn. With the new knowledge about defending contested systems under my belt, I decided to head back to Evati to dock and try again some other night.
But in Egmar, there is a beacon on the overview and a wartarget in local. The complex was a level 2, large enough for my Tech I cruiser to get in and I was confident I could handle anything else except the Tech II frigates known as Interceptors. I arrive at the complex and see a wartarget in a Rifter buzzing the NPCs so I kick in the MWD and start to lock. He is not ready to fight me so he warped off before I got him scrambled. An allied Destroyer warped in behind me, so I left him to cap the complex while I docked and logged off.
No tangible progress this night, but lots of knowledge gained and a better idea of what I'm doing. That counts for something.