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Monday, June 4, 2012

Low-sec ratting is good for the soul.

I'm what Penny Ibramovic over on Tiger Ears calls a day tripper. I like investigating worm holes. I don't live in one - yet - but I admit I find them intriguing. A bit over a week ago I was looking for anomalies and found a K162.
I've been training myself to recognize what lies on the other side of K162s just by the way they look. I'm not that good at it yet but even to me this looked odd. I've seen many K162s and this didn't look like any of them. I referenced Penny's guide. It basically says that if it doesn't match any of the ones listed the K162 leads to known or k-space. In this case, it led to low-sec space on the other side of k-space.
I'd never been to this region of space. Hell, I've never been to the Amarr Empire. I've no use for proselytization. However, this presented an opportunity for something new. There were no capsuleers in local and only two gates. That's an opportunity for ratting!

I traded out Space Ghost II for Prinz Eugen and headed back into the K162. The system was still empty when I emerged so I warped to a random asteroid belt. I hit pay dirt with the first warp.
This was also the first time I'd had a chance to see the new camera upgrades the hanger mechanics installed the week prior. The new upgrades could easily distinguish individual missile trails: veerry niice!

I'd never encountered Blood Raiders before. They seemed to have a hard time hitting Prinz Eugen. That didn't bother me too much. I finished off the first Blood Archon and headed to another belt. It took a few more warps, ignoring the frigates and cruisers on station, but I found another Blood Archon.
I used a little sensor magic and got my view screen to show me what the assault looked like on the receiving end. It's got to be a little disconcerting to see all those missile trails streaking toward you, weaving in and out among themselves, knowing there's nothing you can do to stop them. I imagine the entire ship shook as the missiles blasted away the armor plating. Soon the ship exploded and I moved on. My cargo hold was filling with loot and salvage but I'd still not gotten anything exciting. I hoped the next Blood Archon would provide better.
It actually put up more of a fight than the other two combined though I was never in any real danger. Prinz Eugen can take a lot of incoming as I've mentioned before. While the missile battery crews were doing their jobs, I was able to study the impacts more closely. The new cameras sure do let you see a lot more detail.
At each impact, I'm fairly certain I was seeing chunks of armor and external sensor pods getting blown right off the Blood Archon's hull. The resolution is truly amazing. My hat's off to those camera engineers (aka CCP.) They certainly know their stuff.

In the end, I still didn't get the bonanza I was looking for. I did at least make a profit after paying for the missiles I used. But really, can you put a price on something so fundamentally satisfying as watching chunks of armor careen through space while blowing bad guys to smithereens?

Fly careful.

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