In the last few weeks, residents of the Syndicate region have come under increased pressure from the Initiative. With the Cloud Ring region secured, the Initiative sought to increase its influence, targeting the valuable moons in the Syndicate region bordering its territory. This led to assets belonging to alliances such as 404 Alliance Not Found [U-WOT] being reinforced by the Initiative forces. The small alliances tried to resist, often timing their towers’ invulnerability periods to exit during their prime time and halting the Initiative’s assault in several bloody skirmishes. However, these turned out to be only temporary setbacks for the Initiative, who turned the tables on the defenders on the 19th.
Once again, a tower belonging to 404 Alliance Not Found was exiting its invulnerability period after having been previously reinforced by the Initiative. The Initiative sent, as usual, only a small force to contest the timer, a 25 pilot Machariel battleship fleet with 3 dreadnoughts as support. The fleet arrived in system and set up on the tower, beginning the process of destroying it.
404 Alliance Not Found and Rote Kapelle [STUGH] prepared for the attackers. The two alliances pooled their resources, forming a 40 pilot Rattlesnake battleship fleet and two squadrons of capitals. The Rattlesnake fleet burnt to the system while the capitals prepared to jump in. As the tower was destroyed, a Loki strategic cruiser suddenly de-cloaked in the midst of the Initiative fleet and lit a cynosural beacon, ushering in the joint capital force.
The joint fleet’s dreadnoughts entered their siege cycle, targeting their hostile counterparts while the carriers unleashed scores of fighter squadrons to chew through the hostile ships. Capital munitions were hurled at close range as the two sides exchanged fire. Two of the Initiative Naglfar dreadnoughts felt the full force of the onslaught. Volley after volley hit their shields, the fields becoming visible as more and more munitions detonated against them. Finally they gave in, dissipating and leaving the hull beneath vulnerable. Torpedoes detonated, tearing chunks of the hull as super heated plasma ate through entire segments. Explosive rounds tore through decks as laser fire dismembered the superstructure. Within moments of each other the dreadnoughts exploded, their hulls shaking as they fought to contain the series of explosions unleashed within before finally caving in and tearing apart in a brilliant flash of light followed by rings of fire which quickly disappeared into the cold void.
By then though, the Initiative sprung its trap. The small fleet was merely bait, and as the joint fleet’s capitals entered the field, a second cynosural beacon lit up in the midst of the combatants. This beacon heralded the Initiative’s reinforcements, which had been hidden in range of the fight beforehand and told to log off and wait on their log in screens. Once the joint fleet committed, the pilots logged in and joined the Initiative’s force, dreadnoughts, carriers and force auxiliaries jumped in to aid their brethren while the sub capitals landed on a titan and bridged to the field. Thus it was revealed that the 25 pilot Initiative fleet was actually a 125 pilot fleet.
The reinforcements poured in, more and more dreadnoughts landing on the grid and entering their siege cycles, their turrets lighting up as they targeted the hostile capitals. The Machariels swarmed in, artillery cannons spitting shells at the giant ships, gouging armor plates and stripping shields. Fighter squadrons were decimated, the sub capitals more than able to tear through their paper thin tank.
The immense firepower of the Initiative fleet crashed against the hostile capitals like a tidal wave. Most of the dreadnoughts and carriers could do little to resist the unrelenting barrage. In rapid succession, dreadnoughts fell silent as their guns lost power, their reactors shutting down due to hull breaches or overloading. Within seconds the silence turned into an agonized scream as the ships tore apart in great explosions, throwing debris the size of cruisers and battleships across the battlefield. The flames gushed out of tears in the hull, lashing out at the cold space before disappearing, leaving empty, cold wrecks behind.
The Rattlesnake fleet was ready to jump into the system when its fleet commanders were notified of the hopelessness of the situation. Realizing its meager numbers could not turn the tide of the battle, it retreated, leaving its comrades to their fate. The Initiative continued to mercilessly bombard the remaining capitals, who could do nothing in return, only managing to take with them a hostile Phoenix dreadnought, part of the original bait crew. Only a few escaped the slaughter, leaving the Initiative to claim the field.
With the grid under its control, the Initiative claimed the moon, scavenging the field of what useful modules and ammunition it could salvage before extracting safely to its staging system, bringing the battle to a close.
Battle report can be found here.
The battle lasted only 6 minutes, with the system hosting an estimated 150 pilots and no Time Dilation reported.
The Initiative. lost only 3 dreadnoughts for a total of 10.4 billion ISK damage.
404 Alliance Not Found and Rote Kapelle lost 25 ships inculding 13 dreadnoughts, 1 capital industrial ship and 4 carriers for a total of 60.08 billion ISK of damage.
Salivan Harddin is a member of V0LTA, WE FORM V0LTA, and covers battles across New Eden.