Thursday, April 3, 2014

A Slippery Scorpion

It's a quiet evening.  I am on by myself, exploring.  I scan down our static, and jump into C4b.  Anything to kill?

There is a ship on scan, a Cheetah.  I find it at a tower, and it is manned.  But it's just sitting, which is dull.  Also this corp appears to be Russian, and it's the middle of the night in Mother Russia.  (One might be up really early, maybe.)  So I warp out to a distant planet, fire probes, and start scanning.  I find some gas and a connection to more C4 space, C4c.  I finish scanning more gas, then head downstream into C4c.  Long story short: dull.  So I am heading home.  When I come back into C4b, though, there's been a change.  The Cheetah is gone.  There is a Scorpion on scan. 

Where is it?  At the tower.  I warp there, but it is no longer there.  Try again: it is at the K162 wormhole from my home system.  Evidently, the Russian dude is trying to pop the wormhole.  By himself, one ship.  This seems rather lonely and dangerous.  Especially dangerous, because I want to kill him.

I quickly log on my alt, Otto, to get eyes on the other side of the wormhole, in my home system.  Nobody is there, as I expect, but now I can be certain. 

Otto can drive a battleship pretty well, and our tower does not have a lot of other ships he can fly.  (We have downsized a lot since being sacked.)  So I will use a PVE battleship, refit a bit.  Now I need fast-acting tackle.  I could use my Manticore, but this has the disadvantage that Scorpions can have drones, and missiles, which my tissue paper ship cannot handle well.  So I want something beefier.  What I really want is the Onyx I just brought up.  Area-effect tackle.  I like that.
Scorpion vs Wormhole
This is a bit of a conundrum.  Otto cannot run an Onyx (or most T2s for that matter).  But I want the warp bubble, so I will have to cross the wormhole.  This means the scorpion's pilot will be able to see me on dscan.  But I figure it is worth the chance.  Even if he does see me, he will probably figure one bomber cannot stop him.

I sit watching for the next back and forth.  Here he comes; he crosses; he returns.  Then as he warps off to his tower, I head in.  I uncloak and cross, then fleet-warp both my guys to my tower.  Otto gets a PVP Raven for DPS, with a quick refit to add a warp scrambler to prevent the Scorpion from microwarping off.  Von gets in our Onyx, Brick.  It is indeed a brick, with over 100000 EHP. 

I warp both guys to the wormhole, then sit orbiting it at 500m.  The enemy will have no desire to stay in my system, so I will cross-jump the Onyx when the wormhole sounds.  The enemy will see my Raven and jump back, becoming polarized.  Then I'll pop up the Onyx's warp bubble, lock him up, and kill him with Onyx plus Raven.  Sounds like a plan.

Gotcha, slow battleship.
I wait.  Not long, either, when whomp/crackle and the wormhole flashes.  I cross-jump the Onyx as I had planned.  Otto sees the Scorpion and starts locking it, and it jumps back.  As planned.  I jump Otto then try to get my warp bubble up, which takes a second of eh what? until I realize I have to drop gate cloak.  But I do, and I get the bubble up.  Planned.  Yeah.  And there's the Scorpion!  I start locking him up for the inevitable, and suddenly see he is 101 km from me. 

How can he -- oh.  Micro jump drive.  And he warps and is gone.  Rats.  So much for inevitable.

Hey, I use them myself, so I really should have thought of it.  But a Scorpion is a particularly nice place for an evasive solo hole-popper.  Bubbles?  Micro jump.  Long points?  Micro jump.  Slow-locking scramblers?  Micro jump.  Fast-locking scramblers?  Jam them out, then micro jump.  I like it.  Kudos to you, Russian dude.


  1. I kind of expected the outcome when I saw the title. I used to do something similar in my C1 to pop holes: used blackbirds. Put 4 alts into blackbirds, jumped out, jumped back. With MWD they were 19M kg, so they could eat 30% of the mass of an 500M K162 in one round. Never lost any of them (besides ending up on the wrong side when wormhole collapse and self destruct). A microwarpdriving armor scorpion is a perfect hole closer with large mass, large tank, ECM, MJD.

    1. Although the best hole closer is still the triple, or quadruple, bubble + 100mn MWD hictor.
      On an onyx you go in at 69k mass, which is less than half the mass of a frigate, and come back with 68-ish million mass.