While fighting continued to rage in the North of New Eden, no major clashes were fought, leading instead to a string of skirmishes around the regions of Branch, Tribute, Tenal and Venal.
A Gila cruiser fleet was assembled and started entosis operations in the system, hitting both the infrastructure hub and the territorial claim unit when a Get Off My Lawn [LAWN] Svipul tactical destroyer fleet attempted to disrupt the process.
However, the Svipul fleet was easily dispatched by the Gila fleet, prompting Get Off My Lawn to re-ship into a Gila fleet of its own. The two sides clashed again, but once more, the League of Unaligned Master Pilots proved to be superior to the Imperium fleet, managing to inflict several losses on its enemies while sustaining no losses.
Soon, the fight was joined by a Pandemic Legion [-10.0] Sleipnir command ship fleet which came to aid League of Unaligned Master Pilots. The Sleipnirs landed on top of the Imperium Gila fleet and started tackling it, the command ships opening fire and simply volleying cruisers with their artillery cannons. In rapid succession the Imperium Gila fleet was destroyed, survivors fleeing the field.
This allowed the allies to complete their operations, reinforcing both the infrastructure hub and territorial claim unit before extracting safely and bringing an end to the battle.
Battle report for the 9-GBPD system can be found here.
The force was on its way to defend an Imperium tower in the region which the allies had previously reinforced but had come out of its invulnerability timer at a problematic time for both sides. Hoping to restore its shields and refuel the strontium bay before allies could form up and destroy the tower, the fleet was traveling fast to its destination when Vanguard Coalition (VC) forces managed to get the drop on it.
The VC brought a Cerberus heavy assault cruiser fleet, and engaged the Imperium force on the EIV-1W gate in the S-1ZXZ system. The two sides quickly exchanged fire, with the Imperium fleet suffering a crushing defeat. The Cerberus fleet was able to tank the incoming fire of the Hurricanes, dishing back swarms of missiles which overwhelmed the battlecruisers. In rapid succession, Imperium mainline and support ships simply evaporated, with the Imperium unable to return fire, leaving the VC force unscathed.
After nearly losing their entire fleet, Imperium forces were forced to retreat, leaving the tower undefended, a fact which allied forces would capitalize on later in the day.
Battle report for the S-1ZXZ system can be found here.
This also marked the first appearance of Vanguard Coalition forces in allied operations. The coalition is technically part of the Drone Regions Federation (DRF), but maintains its own autonomy and has recently deployed to the Venal region in order to help allied operations against the Imperium.
Continuing their offense in Venal, allied forces scored another victory when an Imperium tower in the PZOZ-K system was destroyed, following a fight with local Imperium alliances.
Imperium forces were unable to repair the tower before the battle, leaving it vulnerable. This allowed allied forces to advance on it, bringing a joint Northern Coalition. [NC]\Therabois Sleipnir fleet and a Cerberus fleet comprised of Out of Sight. [OOS]\The OSS [OSS]\Abuse of Power. [ASBO].
The Imperium brought a Cerberus fleet of its own and the two sides clashed over the tower itself. The exchange started evenly for both sides, but as time went own the Imperium fleet found itself at a disadvantage, hammered by both allied fleets and losing mainline ships at a growing pace. As it lost more mainline ships, its ability to deal damage to the enemy force diminished, leading to less casualties among the allies.
Finally, the Imperium fleet was unable to fight anymore, having lost too many ships and rather than risk total annihilation, retreated from the field, allowing the allies to destroy the tower and claim the moon for their own, marking another victory.
Battle report for the PZOZ-K system can be found here.
Imperium forces managed to reclaim the system of 7D-0SQ. The system was the first to fall into allied hands, thanks to the efforts of Exodus. [LOLGF]. However, since it had little value of itself aside from propaganda, allied forces did not attempt to defend it, allowing Imperium forces to take it without resistance.
An Imperium Supercapital Construction Assembly Array (SCAA) tower in the Vale of the Silent region was saved by Imperium defenders after allied forces failed to show up for the timer’s expiration.
Though both sides formed massive fleets to contest the tower, delays on the part of the allied forces caused their fleets to get into position late. This allowed the invulnerability timer to expire and for the Imperium forces to restore the tower’s shields and refuel its strontium bay without a problem, thus ensuring another reinforcement timer.
With the main strategic goal lost, allied forces decided to stand down rather than engage, allowing Imperium defenders to claim victory without having to fire a shot in the tower’s defense.
However, allied forces would later re-form their fleets and reinforce several more towers in the region uncontested, which is certain to force the Imperium to continue and defend the region against allied operations.
Part of the delay in allied operations was due to DRF forces attempting to interfere with allied movement through the Geminate region, leading to an impromptu battle in the BND-16 system, with Providence Bloc forces joining in the fight and engaging DRF forces as they retreated in the IOO-7O system, allowing allied operations to continue unhindered.
Another thing of note was the first appearance of Psychotic Tendencies. [TISHU] in the Vale of the Silent region. The alliance had recently deployed alongside Pandemic Legion and League of Unaligned Master Pilots, increasing the allied pressure on the region as well as bolstering allied numbers.
A joint RAZOR Alliance\Fidelas Constans Hurricane fleet was ambushed by allied forces in. The force had bridged to the B-CZXG system in order to travel down to the Vale of the Silent region in order to join the main Imperium defense armada, only to be intercepted en route by a VC Tengu strategic cruiser fleet and a The OSS\Abuse of Power. Cerberus fleet.
The Hurricane fleet warped to a ping above the 0-O2UT gate in the system, only to be quickly probed down by the VC fleet who promptly landed on top of it and engaged it in a medium range melee. The VC fleet was quickly joined by the allied Cerberus fleet, and the two fleets started volleying battlecruisers off the field.
Outnumbered and outgunned, the Imperium fleet attempted to extract, warping off the field only for a large chunk of its ships to be caught by allied interdictors. The battlecruisers left behind were quickly dispatched, tackle holding them down firmly as the Tengu and Cerberus fleets continued to pummel the now defenseless ships, which were destroyed at a rapid rate.
Realizing its mistake, the main Hurricane fleet returned to the field, only to be easily pushed out again as allied forces continued to decimate it. Attempting to flee, the allies managed to catch the fleet in the MC6-5J system at a planet’s customs office, where it bounced to in its attempts to regroup. Allied interdictors managed to land on top of the battered battlecruisers, tackling them once more and allowing allied forces to catch up and land again near the battlecruisers.
The fire exchange continued, however the dwindling number of Imperium ships were no match to the superior numbers of the allied forces and were easily dispatched, the remnants of the fleet fleeing and hunted down by the allies.
The Battle from the Perspective of the Vanguard Coalition Tengu Fleet
Battle report for the B-CZXG and MC6-5J systems can be found here.
VC started its assault on Imperium sovereignty, targeting the EOY-BG system. A small VC Svipul gang started entosis operations in the system, prompting resident Imperium alliances to defend it.
A disorganized Imperium fleet arrived at the system, engaging VC forces in an attempt to secure the system. The VC fleet engaged the defenders and was able to inflict losses while continuing its work unhindered. Yet, with the defenders’ numbers increasing rapidly, VC forces decided to retreat from the system and re-ship into a Gila fleet in order to engage the Imperium forces.
However by the time VC forces returned to the system, its vulnerability window had passed, making it impossible for VC forces to continue operations and allowing Imperium forces to keep the system relatively safe.
Battle report for the EOY-BG system can be found here.
VC continued its assault on Imperium sovereignty, targeting this time the UQ9-3C system, which serves as the new staging system for Fidelas Constans. The VC Gila fleet started entosis operations on the infrastructure hub of the system, prompting Imperium forces to assemble a large Hurricane fleet
The two sides exchanged first blows on the 9IPC-E gate in the system, as Imperium reinforcements attempted to link in the system, only to be intercepted by the VC Gila fleet. A quick battle ensued on the gate, with the Imperium support fleet swiftly annihilated, as the Gila drone swarm chewed through tactical destroyers and then battlecruisers.
Forced to retreat, the Imperium fleet re-grouped in the station present in the system, while the Gila fleet set up on the infrastructure hub again, waiting for the Imperium to undock. The Imperium finally did so, warping to the infrastructure hub and engaging the Gila fleet once more.
Even though outnumbered, the Gila fleet was able to inflict heavy losses on the battlecruiser fleet, which attempted to return fire, only causing minor losses to its enemies. Forced to dock once more, the Imperium fleet left the field for the second time, allowing VC forces to continue their operations.
Undocking for the third time, the Imperium had bolstered its logistics cruiser numbers in order to contend with the VC fleet. Realizing they couldn’t break through the amount of remote shield transfers present on the field, the VC fleet commanders decided to retreat, allowing the Imperium to secure the infrastructure hub.
Battle report for the first three rounds in the UQ9-3C system can be found here.
However, this proved to be a short lived victory for the Imperium, as the VC fleet re-shipped once again, bringing a greater number of pilots to the field in a Cerberus fleet.
With the infrastructure hub once again under assault, the Imperium gathered this time a Proteus strategic cruiser fleet and attempted to engage the VC fleet, which was once again set up on the infrastructure hub. Warping to the infrastructure hub, the Imperium fleet was quickly dragged via interdiction probes into a comfortable range of the heavy assault cruisers, which swiftly unleashing their swarm of missiles and started volleying the strategic cruisers.
The Imperium fleet attempted to return fire but was unable to tank the incoming damage, rapidly losing ships as the Cerberus fleet continued to pummel the strategic cruisers. In rapid succession, the Imperium mainline ships simply exploded, forcing the remnants of the fleet to flee back to the station. This allowed the allies to reinforce the infrastructure hub before extracting safely, claiming another victory.
Battle report for the fourth round of the UQ9-3C system can be found here.
League of Unaligned Master Pilots continued its assault on the Vale of the Silent region, this time striking at the MY-T2P system.
Imperium forces quickly formed a Rupture cruiser fleet in order to defend the system, assisted by a DRF Hurricane fleet. The two fleets burned to the system and attempted to engage the allied Gila fleet. A series of skirmishes ensued as the three fleets maneuvered around the system, the Imperium managing to ultimately save the system but losing nearly the entirety of its Rupture fleet in the process.
The Gila fleet was able to simply chew through the cruisers, the Gila drones swarming over the Ruptures and destroying them. Imperium stealth bomber squadrons attempted to alleviate the situation, nabbing a few ships from the Gila fleet but ultimately were unable to stop the massacre. As the Hurricane fleet entered the fray, most of the Rupture fleet had already been destroyed.
The Hurricane fleet was able to volley a few of the logistics cruisers of the Gila fleet, but soon found itself unable to hit the fast moving cruisers. Whats worse, without the support of the Imperium fleet, the Gila drone swarm was starting to take its toll on the battlecruisers. Thus, the only sensible choice it had was to flee, attempting to disengage and jump out of the system.
Though having suffered a few losses and unable to complete its entosis operations, the Gila fleet was not about to give up and gave chase, catching the DRF fleet in the neighboring system of NFM-0V system. A brief firefight occurred on the MY-T2P gate as the two sides tangled, but the DRF had no inclination to fight and attempted to burn away and jump out, trying to return to its staging system.
By now, several allied fleets had formed up and attempted to intercept the Hurricane fleet, managing to catch stragglers and inflict a few more losses, however it managed to escape back to its staging, bringing an end to the battle.
Battle report for the MY-T2P and NFM-oV systems can be found here.
A DARKNESS. [DARK.] Cerberus fleet and a joint Pandemic Legion\Psychotic Tendencies. Proteus fleet had formed to chase the DRF Hurricane fleet after it had engaged an allied Gila fleet in Vale of the Silent. Unable to halt its retreat, the allies managed to catch a few stragglers and were about to extract home when reports of an Imperium Rupture fleet reforming reached their ears.
With scouts reporting the Rupture fleet had undocked and was in warp to their gate, the allies jumped in, first the Proteus fleet then later the Cerberus fleet. As the Ruptures landed, they quickly opened fire on the few strategic cruisers which had de-cloaked first, gaining aggression and starting the fight.
The two sides fought a close range brawl, with the strategic cruisers simply melting Ruptures at an amazing rate, a process which was only accelerated by the arrival of the Cerberus fleet.
The Rupture fleet was only able to destroy a couple of mainline ships in return, focusing most of its attention on the logistics wing of the Proteus fleet and destroying several of its ships.
By now, the Rupture fleet had taken heavy losses and was unable to inflict any more damage. It quickly found itself trapped on the gate, forced to fight to the last, the allies managing to obliterate it completely.
With the battle won, allied forces departed safely from the system, having managed to secure another victory.
Battle report for the M-OEE8 system can be found here.
Though another low key skirmish, this battle marked the first appearance of DARKNESS. and its own coalition in the fighting. Reports of the alliance deploying to The Forge region in order to combat the Imperium seem to have been accurate, as the DARKNESS. Cerberus fleet assisted the Proteus fleet throughout the fight and later extracted alongside it without incident.
EVE News 24 will keep you updated with the latest news as the war in the north continues.
Salivan Harddin is a member of Reikoku, Pandemic Legion, and covers battles across New Eden