Jita was busy. Hundreds of people piloting ships all around the gates and stations. I very carefully flew my Iteron around a gigantic Fenrir freighter and got in line to dock. My disguise was ready to go so that no one would recognize me as the infamous pirate Spectre and I could purchase goods in peace. Upon entering the station, I went straight to the market computers and began filling out my order. I needed a new Vexor and scrolled down to it on the list:
Vexor: 10,150,000 ISK
WHAT?! Ten million ISK? That was more than double the going price and I was absolutely not going to pay it. I mulled my options and decided instead to try a cruiser that I have pretty much never piloted before, the Thorax. I found it on the market for a reasonable price and had one sent down to the hangar to be loaded into my hauler. After much deliberation, I decided to purchase and fit the ship like so:
5x Light Neutron Blasters
1x Warp Disruptor
1x Damage Control
1x Medium Armor Repairer
2x Energized Adaptive Nano Membranes
1x 1600mm Plating
5x Hammerhead Drones
This setup was easy to fly, resilient and had been suggested to me by a fellow pirate who flies a mean Thorax. He had to use ECM jamming drones but I have yet to educate myself in their operation so instead I just went with the regular combat variant. I ordered some other assorted goods including some spiced wine, Johnsonville brats, Toaster Strudels and a new pony (my last one had been incinerated in a ship explosion and I need some sort of companionship out there in the lonely void). I went back to my ship, checked that everything was packed up properly, fed Mr Pilkins a carrot and returned home with my new shiny stuff.
Once my new Thorax was unpacked and tuned up, I hopped on and got a feel for the new ship. It had that nice new ship smell and the pilots seat was very comfy. It even had one of those computers that keeps track of my mileage! I powered up, signaled the station and undocked into space. A few jumps away from the system, I found a Caldari Caracal cruiser on scan. It appeared to be piloted by another pirate that I have encountered once before and I knew that his ship would be equipped very well. After a little bit of cat and mouse, we landed into the same belt and began our fight. I got myself as close into range as I could, locked him up with my web and scrambler and began blasting away with my guns and drones. His shields were going down pretty slowly but the tank on my Thorax was easily able to match it. I was not taking much damage and my repairer was helping to mitigate a portion of what I did take.
Mid-way through the battle, a third party suddenly appeared in the belt. A pilot in a Claw interceptor locked us both and began peppering away with artillery. The damage was inconsequential, but this meant that whoever won the cruiser fight would wind up being locked down in the belt, unable to destroy the tackler who was zipping around at thousands of kilometers per second. I turned my attention back to the Caracal and finished him off. I was only about halfway into my armor at this point and the Claw was doing piss for damage. I looted my kill and began trying to microwarpdrive out of scrambler range so I could flee. After a little bit of manuevering, I did somehow force my pursuer to lose his lock and I fled off to a safe spot. I realized immediately after jumping into warp that I had left my drones behind! Five Hammerhead II drones worth several million ISK. I smacked my palm against my forehead and looked at Mr Pilkins. He too was upset over my misstep.
I flew around for a few minutes, working up the courage to return and pick up my little mechanical friends. The Claw was still around but no additional pirates had come to back him up so the danger seemed pretty moot. I finally decided to take my chances and entered warp. I arrived, flew to where my drones sat and as expected, the Claw pilot warped in soon after and locked me down again. I calmly scooped up my drones, redeployed them under control of my combat computer and began doing all sorts of maneuvering to try and get the Claw pilot into web range. I microwarpdrived left, right, up, down and all around and finally did manage to get the pilot to fly close enough for me to use my status webifier. Once he was slowed it was an easy job for my guns and drones to smash him. I grabbed his loot and fled the field right as yet another interested party entered the belt in a Myrmidon battlecruiser.
(1) The Thorax is way better than I expected. Good damage, good drone bay and an impressive tank. I will definitely continue to fly them in the future. It also got great mileage according to the ships computer... nearly 150 astronomical units to the petaliter!
(2) The Caracal sucks. Even completely decked out, they dont seem to be able to compete with other tech I cruisers.
(3) Don't be a stupid interceptor pilot. If you don't have backup coming, don't sit around locking down a ship whos tank you cannot break and who obviously has a web. Eventually things will turn against you (not that I am one to talk).
(4) Pony's smell. I believe that for now on Mr Pilkins will have to remain behind in the station.
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