Last Sunday, I flew a Rifter. I almost never fly them, despite having 4 or 5 of them always ready to go in my hanger.
For years, if you were going to PvP in a T1 Frigate, you did it in a Rifter or not at all. They were just that much better than every other frigate. Not being one to do what everyone else is doing, I frequently found myself in Merlins.
But after the Frigate Rebalance, pilots have choices. You don’t have to play the min-max game and fly a Rifter. You can fly what you like. That’s a good thing.
So of course, now that I have a choice, I jumped in a Rifter and brought it out to the Camp. Small guns to kill drones. AB/Scram/MSE fit with DC2 and shield rigs tipping her toward a heavy tackle role. Someone else will just have to bring webs.
I suppose you think that a guy with a name that starts with ‘B’ needs to have a little tank?
Well, I’ve been known to get Primaried now and again. Don’t know why, I’m a nice enough guy.
Now, the scouts have been quieter lately. One of my favorite guys does a running commentary of what’s going on next door and puts us in perpetual let down when he tells us what’s not coming our way. I scolded him, told him to stop doing that. Makes me sad.
So when the scout on Sunday told us, Hey, hate to tell you this, two Scorpion Navy Issues and a Cynabal just landed on the gate, and warped away, I wept.
Then they came back and jumped into system with us.
Our FC was kind of junior and our fleet kind of light. 2 Dessies, 3 Frigs, 1 Assault Frig and a Griffin. 2 Stealth Bombers for a little DPS support. He pulls the gang off the bubble to assess the situation.
Doable, but it might be a little bloody.
Yeah, it’s pretty even on paper, but they can score kills faster than we can, and our Griffin certainly can’t jam all of them.
Because I am probably OUCH’s most conservative FC, I almost never second guess a fleet commander when he decides not to engage. I rarely commit the fleet to a battle that I don’t think I am going to win, and win decisively.
How many guys does it take to kill one cruiser?
All of them.
There’s no shame in the game, huh, Bren?
Nope. Not at all. None whatsoever.
Our guests slam into our drag bubble as a group. We’re still talking. FC is consulting his XO, who almost has him convinced to go for it. I align to the bubble. Our guests are just sitting there, looking at us. Teasing us. No. Now they are slow boating back to the gate.
I’ve never killed a Scorpion Navy Issue before.
XO reports that a couple of our neighbors are en route, flying damage dealers. FC says he thinks we should go for it, but he’d rather an experienced FC take over. I’m the senior FC on the field.
I detail a quick plan to spread points and EWAR, then I warp down to the targets. I land 20K away and start burning straight for the them. I’m worried about the Cynabal, if he gets loose, he can wreck a frigate fleets day. But he’s someone else’s target, not mine.
The fleet is landing as I scram the first SNI. The Cynabal locks me up and my shields take a hit. A second one. Then it stops. Cynabal is jammed. I love Griffins.
In seconds, both SNIs are scrammed, the Cynabal is scrammed and webbed and he is looking mighty squishy. Primary. We are working him over when the cavalry arrives.
Boom. Cynabal is down, SNI-A is Primary.
We go to work on the first battleship. He has me webbed and neuted, but he’s not going anywhere. Tier 3 guns open up from the gate, stripping away shields. I’m already moving for SNI-K when SNI-A goes to pieces. Boom.
Seems silly, but I call SNI-K Primary. The guys are already trying to figure out what these guys were thinking. I tell them to settle down until the last Scorpion is finished. He lasts about as long as the first, which is not long at all. Boom.
We thank our neighbors for their help, loot and salvage the wrecks and start making guesses on why 3 guys in what look like PvE fits, ie no points or scrams, would try to engage us. We certainly gave them enough time to escape.
Why didn’t they take door number two?
Don’t know, but I’m not complaining. Like I said, I’d never killed a Scorpion Navy Issue before.
Now, I’ve killed two.
In an effing Rifter.
No, really. Two of them.