B-U299 system, Cobalt Edge region. On the 12th of March at 14:12 EVE Standard Time, a Shadow of xXDEATHXx [X.W.X] Rorqual capital industrial ship squadron was annihilated in the system resulting in more than 100 billion ISK in losses.
The massacre was carried out by Hard Knocks Citizens [HKRAB] and L A Z E R H A W K S [HAWKS]. Hard Knocks Citizens had knowledge of the Rorquals’ operation in the system, keeping an eye on their activity. When they spotted no less than nine of the ships mining in an anomaly the call was made to attempt and destroy the ships.
Scouts quickly probed a wormhole chain to the area, managing to locate an exit 10 jumps away from the system. A 50 pilot joint Sleipnir command ship fleet was hastily assembled and dispatched to the system, interdictors rushing ahead to tackle the ships and keep them pinned in the anomaly. At the same time, Hard Knocks Citizens’ dreaded drone lands super carrier squadron was moved into range of the system, prepared to jump in once tackle was confirmed and a cynosural beacon secured.
The Rorquals were caught by complete surprise. The capital ships were mostly immobile in the anomaly and were easily snared by the interdictors’ warp disruption probes. However due to the spread of the ships across the anomaly two managed to escape, leaving seven Rorquals at the mercy of Hard Knocks Citizens.
The Sleipnir fleet entered the system and warped to the Rorquals. Once in the anomaly, the command ships opened fire and started to apply damage to the Rorquals. One ship was easily dispatched by the Sleipnir fleet which proceeded to systematically destroy the entire Rorqual force. The interdictors themselves kept vigilant, deploying warp disruption probes in intervals to keep the capital ships from warping.
Drone Regions Federation (DRF) forces responded to this threat, organizing relief forces. The DRF response was to send a couple of Orthrus cruisers and a small gang of Cormorant destroyers to remove the interdictors from the field and allow the Rorquals to warp out from harm’s way. The Orthrus cruisers landed on grid and using rapid light missile launchers, made short work of several interdictors.
With the Orthrus cruisers presenting a clear danger to the Sleipnir’s fleet tenuous hold over the remaining Rorquals, the Hard Knocks Citizens and L A Z E R H A W K S pilots focused their fire on destroying the ships. One after another, the Orthrus were ripped to pieces while the Cormorant fleet was forced again and again to warp out or risk utter destruction. Regardless, DRF kept re-shipping to more Orthrus cruisers and warping them in.
While this was going on, Hard Knocks Citizens secured a cynosural beacon to a nearby, allowing its super carrier squadron to gate to the action. Once in the system, the super carriers warped to a perch above the field. With 10 super carriers present, the job of destroying the Rorquals became easier. The super carriers deployed fighter bomber squadrons and sent them towards the tackled ships. The swarm of fighter bombers was able to reach the capital ships and destroy them with torpedo strikes and regular fire. Many of the Rorquals had by that point burnt their pulse activated nexus invulnerability cores and could do nothing to resist the devastating firepower hurled at them.
The fighter bomber swarm moved like locusts across the asteroid field, landing on one Rorqual briefly and engulfing it in fire before departing again to the next, leaving a wreck behind it. It was assisted by the Sleipnir fleet which continued to burn across the grid repulsing DRF attempts to free the tackled ships.
24 minutes from the moment the first Rorqual was destroyed, the last one was brought down by the combined Sleipnir fleet and super carrier squadron’ firepower. In the process five more Rorquals, and an Archon carrier which warped in to try to save the ships, were also destroyed.
With the Rorquals destroyed, the Sleipnir fleet started looting the field while guarding the wrecks from the DRF that still lingered around the system. The fleet also remained to cover the super carriers who recalled their fighter bombers and made the preparations to extract. Once exit cynosural beacons were secured, the super carriers departed the system. This allowed the Sleipnir fleet to withdraw as well, having scooped whatever it could from the many wrecks strewn across the asteroids.
With Hard Knocks Citizens and L A Z E R H A W K S retreating, the battle ended.
Battle report for the B-U299 system can be found here.
All told, the battle lasted 37 minutes with Time Dilation not reported and the system hosting 152 pilots at the peak of the fighting.
Hard Knocks Citizens and L A Z E R H A W K S lost 10 interdictors in the fight resulting in 1.91 billion ISK of damage.
DRF forces lost 39 ships in total, including 7 Rorquals, 1 carrier and 14 cruisers for a total of 102.72 billion ISK damage.
Salivan Harddin is a member of Hoover Inc., Pandemic Legion, and covers battles across New Eden