Dour system, Placid region. On the 12th of October at 19:30 EVE Standard Time forces belonging to Snuffed Out [B B C] and Psychotic Tendencies. [TISHU] clashed with Shadow Cartel [SHDWC], Dead Terrorists [IKILU] and The OSS [OSS] in the system over a tower.
Snuffed Out and Shadow Cartel have been fighting over hegemony in the Placid region, translated into possession of the lucrative moons located in it. This fight was no exception, with Snuffed Out forces having reinforced the tower previously and forming up to destroy it. Snuffed out and Psychotic Tendencies formed an estimated 80 pilot Machariel Battleship fleet with Triage Carrier support, only to learn their opponents had a 150 pilot Machariel fleet of their own with a strong Logistics wing. In order to counter this, Snuffed Out and its allies brought Dreadnoughts to supplement their numbers.
Pandemic Legion [-10.0] who had intelligence about the battle formed a 70 pilot Ishtar Heavy Assault Cruiser fleet and made its way towards the system.
Snuffed Out forces bridged on a ping from the tower, approximately 200-250 kilometers away. Shadow Cartel had its fleet already in the system and warped to the cynosural beacon at a range of 70 kilometers, signaling the start of the battle.
The two fleets started exchanging fire, volleying each other off the field. Seeing their numerical disadvantage, Snuffed Out brought in a Dreadnought group with more Carrier support (Estimated at 20-25 Capitals). However, the Shadow Cartel forces quickly increased distance, meaning the Snuffed Out Dreadnoughts were unable to get good shots due to range and tracking limitations. The Shadow Cartel force wisely chose to keep a range of 100 kilometers between it and the Snuffed Out fleet which allowed it to keep exchanging fire. Snuffed Out sub-Capitals attempted to close the distance but were limited by the range of their Triage Carriers, as they lacked a mobile Logistics wing.
As both sides maneuvered, Pandemic Legion forces entered the fray, warping at range of the two fleets and unleashing their swarm of drones on the Shadow Cartel ships while burning for position. This however proved futile as the Shadow Cartel Machariels simply volleyed the Ishtars and the drone swarm was proven ineffective as the high Time Dilation environment caused the drones to malfunction and not switch targets on command. After a few failed attempts to make the drones behave and losing ships, Pandemic Legion quickly retreated, having learned of a different fight in progress elsewhere.
With Pandemic Legion gone Shadow Cartel once again focused on the Snuffed Out fleet. The fire exchanges continued, each side losing a few Battleships in the process as the Logistics wings of both sides attempted to keep up. Snuffed Out brought in another group of Dreadnoughts (Estimated at 10-15 Capitals) closer to the Shadow Cartel fleet but once more it burned out of range and kept its distance.
As the volleys continued, more ships on either side were destroyed. Snuffed Out consolidated its Capital force, re-pinging them on grid, but lost a few Dreadnoughts who bumped out of Carrier range, one even destroyed by a Titan allied with Shadow Cartel which quickly warped in and nabbed the kill. For the most part Snuffed Out Machariels were volleyed while on the Shadow Cartel side they managed to tank fairly well, most of the losses coming from support Battleships and pilots drifting out of anchor.
As time wore on the overall trade in numbers was even, but not so the trade in mainline ships. With Snuffed Out losing more Machariels and unable to properly volley the enemy Battleships with its Dreadnoughts, there was one solution in the minds of its Fleet Commanders: Drop the hammer. Into the system jumped the combined Snuffed Out and Psychotic Tendencies Supercarrier fleet. Quickly, it unleashed its swarm of fighters which destroyed both the Nestor Battleships on the Shadow Cartel side, making it impossible for it to re-fit its ships on the fly. Whats more, one of the Nestors belonged to the Shadow Cartel Fleet Commander, which necessitated the Shadow Cartel forces to temporarily withdraw in order to re-group and prepare a proper response to the Snuffed Out escalation.
With Shadow Cartel forces temporarily retreating, the Supercarriers withdrew as well to a safe tower while the Snuffed Out Dreadnoughts quickly warped to the tower at range, cycled their siege module and destroyed the tower itself. Once done, the Psychotic Tendencies. Supercarriers jumped out of the system to their staging in the Vestouve system of Placid.
With Psychotic Tendencies. Supercarriers safe, the Snuffed Out force quickly withdrew, losing an Archon Carrier in the process as it was tackled by the returning Shadow Cartel forces just as the rest of the fleet jumped out. With the Snuffed Out forces gone, Shadow Cartel and its allies secured the grid and replaced the tower, thus managing to win both the battle and the strategic objective.
The Battle from the PoV of the Snuffed Out Machariels
Battle report for the Dour system can be found here.
All told the battle lasted 70 minutes with Time Dilation being noticeable, swaying between 10%-50% and felt across the entire time. The system itself saw 370 pilots at the start of the fighting.
Snuffed Out and its allies lost 1 Carrier, 3 Dreadnoughts and 25 Battleships for a total of 47.05 Bil ISK damage. Shadow Cartel and its allies lost 24 Battleships for a total of 25.44 Bil ISK damage. Pandemic Legion lost 6 Ishtars for 2.13 Bil ISK damage.
However the battle did not end there. A Snuffed Out Erebus Titan which jumped in with the Supercarrier group in the initial battle against orders had failed to extract properly. In fact, it jumped to the wrong exit beacon, landing in Vestouve instead of the mid point to Snuffed Out staging system of Vey. Whats more, the pilot did not speak up on fleet, with only Psychotic Tendencies. Fleet Commander quickly realizing his error.
Without losing time, the Titan was guided to a safe tower in the system. Yet when it warped to it, it did so on 0 which caused it to bump out of the shields. Another tower was quickly secured for the Titan and the password given to the pilot. However failure on the part of the Titan pilot to enter the correct password caused the titan to land outside the tower’s shields.
At this point the Titan still has an option to warp out or make a panic jump, but instead remained there while his allies were completely unaware to what was happening. Suddenly, a Stealth Bomber uncloaked and tried to light a cynosural beacon but was quickly gunned down by the tower. A Phobos Heavy Interdictor landed on the Titan only a minute later but was destroyed by the tower as well. With only a few seconds before a proper exit beacon was sorted a Broadsword Heavy Interdictor landed on top of the Titan. It managed to light a Cynosural beacon and a The OSS Dreadnought fleet jumped on top of the Titan, accompanied by the Shadow Cartel sub-Capital fleet.
The force quickly set to work on the Titan, which was not even fitted with a full tank. Psychotic Tendencies. attempted to save the Titan and quickly undocked a Carrier force and warped it to the Titan, but the lack of a proper tank and the overwhelming damage on the field made it futile. Finally the Titan succumbed to the enemy fire and exploded, leaving the Carriers to became primaries. They were quickly tackled and in rapid succession destroyed with no resistance.
All of this happened as the Snuffed Out forces finally realized what was going on and attempted to reach the system, but being far from jump range of their staging system and necessitating gate travel, they were en-route when the news hit them and turned back instead, as there was no meaning in going there, allowing Shadow Cartel and its allies to extract safely, ending the battle for good.
With a Titan and 7 Carriers destroyed, the grand total of Snuffed Out and allied losses reached 170.5 Bil ISK
The Titan’s Destruction from the PoV of The OSS Dreadnought
Salivan Harddin is a member of Reikoku, Pandemic Legion, and covers battles across New Eden