27 August 2012

Drake Fights Hurricane in Fade

The recent loss of the HAM Drake at the gate was no deterrent to getting out and about again in another HAM Drake. Starwalker decided that now was the time to head off into null-sec and see what trouble he could find. He set off from Eugales and ended up in Fade where he was finding that the Goonswarm space was sparsely populated.

Starwalker was alone in a system when noticed that he was joined in local by another pilot who seemed to be in a Noctis. So he decided that this might be an ideal opportunity to do some ratting to improve his security status, gain some modest income and possibly lull the Noctis into a false sense of security or alternatively to bait this local to have a go at the "ratter".

Landing at a random asteroid belt Starwalker set about destroying some of the Serpentis ships and scanned again for the Noctis but the pilot left local. How disappointing... until the same pilot returned in a Hurricane, now that was much better. Luckily Starwalker had nearly finished the four Serpentis ships and so when they were destroyed he approached a wreck hoping that the Hurricane would jump in - it did.

Starwalker immediately engaged the Hurricane, locking, scrambling and firing with the heavy assault missiles overheated immediately. The Hurricane closed in to point blank range and Starwalker was concerned that he might lose a DPS race to a shield Hurricane. This time he remembered to use his Warrior IIs to add a little more damage and he also tried to get a little distance to reduce the damage slightly from the autocannons.

The Hurricane stayed close and was also neuting, the Drake's capacitor was being drained away fast and its shields were nearly gone but the Hurricane shields were depleting fast too. Starwalker tried to gain some range again but soon the capacitor was empty and his web and scramble dropped. He thought that the Hurricane might decide to leave now as it had entered armour but the Drake was also in deep trouble. The Hurricane stayed - so it would be a fight to the death.

The two battlecruisers slugged it out with both going into structure. Starwalker had to stop overheating his missiles and only narrowly avoided burning them out. As the two battlecruisers circled each other in flames the Drake delivered the final blow and the Hurricane exploded. It was a good fight and Starwalker's first solo kill in a battlecruiser; he collected the loot. 

Unfortunately, Starwalker was now some distance from Eugales and this encounter had left his Drake in flames with no way to repair. It would be a dangerous return trip where he was especially vulnerable because of the damaged condition of the Drake. Starwalker headed back thinking about ship selection and fittings.

This experience highlighted for Starwalker that he really wanted to have an active tank rather than buffer, speed or resistance. It also seemed that with a shield tank a close fight almost forced a repair between battles or else accept the fight with the damaged armour/structure. The trouble with armour damage was that there was no way to repair the armour in space, so being able to repair in station was only possible in low-sec, in null-sec that repair would not be available. 

These factors pointed towards fitting ships with an active armour tank, except that they were certainly out of fashion but possibly more importantly they lacked the speed of shield tanked equivalents and tended to have lower DPS. More input for ship selection and fitting.

1 comment: