Normally the signs would not look good. I’m approaching the 8 month mark of playing Eve Online, which seems to be the average time players play an MMORPG. I’m dipping into Dungeons & Dragons Online to play with friends. I’ve found a lot less to write about. Am I about to leave the New Eden universe?
Hell no! All that means is that the formal learning phase of the game is over and the time to fight the right fight is now. Eve University is a player-run training organization that is designed to have most of its members leave after a time to go onto bigger (but not necessarily better) things. The rules that felt warm and protective when I was a new player with under 2 million skill points now felt restrictive as a 9 million skill point pilot with 5 ½ months of exposure to Unista fleets, classes, and forums. So the time had arrived to move on to the next phase of my Eve life: faction warfare.
On Saturday I dropped roles in the Uni and on Sunday joined the Eve University affiliated Minmatar faction warfare corporation Thukker University of Hard Knocks [TUOHK], better known as Thukk U. During that time while my main was doing the traditional station spinning of an Eve University student during a wardec (which makes for some VERY enthusiastic war fleet members when war targets are sighted) my industrial alt started gathering the ships and fittings I’ll use to start off my faction warfare career. Why not do my shopping with my main? Three reasons. The first is that my industrial alt holds most of my money. Reason #2 is that my industrial alt flies a Mammoth that fits 9 large cargo containers, perfect for moving 9 unassembled frigates and associated fittings and ammo to my new operating base. And the third reason is the most important of all: if I undocked and flew to Hek and Rens to do some shopping, I’d get my ship destroyed and probably be podded by either a Uni director or a Unista fleet.
The first class of ship I plan on flying is the Rifter and I’m using Wensley’s Rifter Guide as a basis to start out with. I now have ten Rifters to fly (and lose) but only have the T2 autocannon and damage control units for 5 of them. Another item I still need to take care of is buying a battlecruiser to run level 3 missions in, so I’m not depleting my wallet quite yet on buying all the fittings for the Rifters. I also need to figure out whether to fit afterburners or microwarp drives. I have the feeling most of the fights are not going to be at a star gate, so using an MWD is starting to look appealing.
Being the natural carebear that I am, I had never entered low-sec by myself before. So did I take it nice and slow and gradually work myself into feeling comfortable? Of course I did. No one ever gets attacked in Amamake, right? That’s why I took the most expensive ship I own and just started flying around making bookmarks.
Okay, the most expensive ship I own is a Cheetah, the Minmatar covert ops ship. I may be crazy, but I’m not stupid. After the last two wars the Uni had with the Privateer Alliance a lot of discussion took place concerning how to survive flying covert ops ships against highly skilled opposition. After some practice using the techniques and making sure my signature radius was as small as possible, I jumped in. So my first contribution to the Minmatar militia turned out not taking part in a blazing shootout against some Amarr pig-dogs but letting someone know there was no gate camp on the Osoggur gate. Well, I guess I had to start somewhere.