At year’s end, here are five battles that show us a lot about Coalitions, Supers, and Risk and Reward in 2012…
SOLAR, Black Legion., versus New Curse Coalition, Dotbros., HBC
Tidi: A slideshow.
The statistics alone speak for a massive, important fight. But if we look at the wider picture, it also says a lot about 0.0 warfare in 2012.
With an important 1V-LI2 timer to fight for, Dotbros’ Rokhs hooked up with Gypsy and RA Tengu and Scorpion fleets. Their opponent, SOLAR, dropped Abaddons and triage on them. When RA escalated to dreadnoughts, SOLAR escalated to dropping fifty super-capitals. This in turn brought in super-capitals from Gypsy and Dotbros. If that wasn’t chaos enough, HBC then came crashing through the ceiling with both supercapitals and support, turning the fight decisively against SOLAR and Black Legion.
In retrospect, it’s interesting to see how a batphone can be used not just to aid someone but also to isolate them. By maintaining the possibility of involving -A- into the battle, SOLAR had incurred the wrath of HBC. And so although -A- were not present themselves, their enemies certainly were.
Although -A- could not be considered a ‘batphone’ to SOLAR, it does point to a trend. In 2010 you would batphone. In 2011 you had to wonder if the enemy had a better batphone. In 2012, you have to consider the baggage of your batphone.
An unusual aspect of the fight, too, is that it is a rare example of a shield super-capital fleet in action. Gypsy Band fielded eleven Wyverns and six shield-tanked titans. Not only were Gypsy Band going ‘all in’ but they were fielding an unusual deck!
Because of Falcon (Black Legion versus NC.)
This engagement didn’t involve supers. There’s no video. It didn’t even involve a fleet. There is not even a killmail.
BL shoot PL Falcon. PL Falcon turns out to be NC. Alt.
Anger leads to drama, drama leads to allies falling out. Goons storm region.
In truth it’s a little unfair to think of a region lost to one incident. CFC had just a begun a massive reinforcement spree across multiple systems. Despite an impressive effort at making CFC bleed for their progress, the end was probably not that far off anyway.
But it’ll be remembered as an important exchange of fire anyway, one of those things that stay in Eve history: region lost because of Falcon.
What deserves to be remembered too, however, is that Black Legion and NCdot fought strongly against the odds and it shows that even if you can’t stop a powerful coalition like CFC, you can make them work hard for their progress. The Falcon incident gives neither side due credit but makes a great story.
Rooks and Kings versus Everyone
This is a battle that tells a lot about the challenges of fighting in null sec now.
Having pipebombed and triage dropped FA a number of times during FA’s not-super-successful stay in Syndicate, Rooks and Kings then dropped titans and Pantheon carriers on them during a tower op. FA’s dreads were quickly nuked. The support fleet was unable to break RnK’s signature Napocs, who were ably assisted by Syndicate locals Pure Madness and Agony Unleashed. While more and more Tempests went to their death, CFC began filtering in more and more ships in a desperate attempt to bubble the supers and caps even at heavy cost, while the batphone did its work.
Finally, supercap fleets from CFC, Pandemic Legion, TEST and others arrived on the heavily bubbled POS. RnK then went into the tower before CFC could kill it, changed the password, and starbursted their caps out of the bubbles and to safety.
It shows that even today, if you pick your moment well, small alliances can still wage battle with caps and supers in direct fleet combat against the likes of CFC in nullsec, if you have a plan… which leads to the next battle.
-A- versus HBC
Also still willing to drop supers aggressively on entities like HBC or CFC (until that point, anyway) was Against All Authorities. However, this had a rather different ending.
-A-’s Makalu had jumped a 16-strong Supercarrier group onto a beacon in K-6, where TEST had been relocating to. After killing a carrier, -A-’s Supers decided to warp to the station to try and get more kills. This time it was one risk too many.
Hundreds of TEST alliance undocked dictor after dictor to heroically hold the caps while Pandemic Legion formed a monster Supercapital force. The heavens opened and 37 Titans and 85 Supercarriers jumped onto -A-’s stricken fleet.
All but one of -A-’s Supercarriers was killed, leaving a graveyard of 400billion in damage (eve-kill.net/?a=kill_related&kll_id=14343965)
2012 has shown a lot about risks that makes sense and risks that don’t. More than ever, coalition foot soldiers will throw their ships on the line to hold supers while someone rounds up the big guns. As much as PL is a juggernaut it was the men and women of TEST who held onto the prize.
Faction Warfare versus Pandemic Legion
Pandemic Legion are a tough cookie. They have the largest super capital fleet in Eve and more importantly, probably the fastest response time. So an operation to kill a Pandemic Legion titan on a gate needs to be completed fast.
The titan was Odda’s Erebus and the system was Amamake. Odda had camped the gate there for a number of days while FW FCs watched him. Then, in a well organised ambush, forces from faction warfare, including Dunk n Disorderly and Wolfsbrigade, pounced on the titan with dreads and killed it before enough PL support could reach to help him.
Pandemic Legion’s response fleet inflicted heavy damage but the operation was a success: Odda down. It may be the age of coalitions but in Eve you still never know quite what will happen when you log in that day.