Y-OMTZ system, Delve region. On the 4th of April at 2:28 EVE Standard Time, a battle unfolded in the system over a Hel super carrier.
The battle was instigated by Pandemic Legion [-10.0]. The alliance had been contracted to destroy a specific Hel piloted by a member of KarmaFleet in Goonswarm Federation [CONDI]. In order to do so, Pandemic Legion fleet commanders devised an ambitious plan. Using the remaining ships in the Delve arsenal, Pandemic Legion would strike at its target, destroying it in a suicide run.
For the plan to work, scouts were dispatched to locate the target and observe its activity. Once they observed it thoroughly, the scouts waited for the system to empty out before helping interdictor pilots to move in. These interdcitors would position themselves at safe spots and log off until the day they were called to log back in.
Pandemic Legion’s next move was to make sure it had enough ships fitted and ready to hand out. Rummaging through the remains of the Delve ship cache, Pandemic Legion fleet commanders were able to assemble a dreadnought squadron and a small Tempest battleship fleet. The fleet itself would have no logistics backing whatsoever, but survival was not its mission – Only pure damage.
The next phase called to make sure enough pilots in the alliance still had jump clones from previous deployments to the area. With a sufficient number of pilots retaining old jump clones, Pandemic Legion fleet commanders had the numbers and the infrastructure prepared. All that was missing was the execution.
In the early hours of the 4th of April, the plan was set into motion. The Hel was confirmed to be online, in fact guarding a couple of Rorqual industrial capital ships in an anomaly. The Hel and its Rorquals were blissfully unaware of the calamity set to befall them. Springing their trap, Pandemic Legion fleet commanders gave the order for the interdictors to log in while pilots were told to clone jump down to Delve where they were handed ships. The few remaining dreadnoughts left from previous operations were divided between pilots as well as the Tempest and Bhaalgorn battleships. More interdictors were handed out and the fleet quickly set out, burning to the system.
In the meantime, the interdictors logged back in and appeared in the system, using their directional scanners to find the Hel’s location and warping there immediately. Within moments the Hel and its chargers were under a thick cover of warp disruption probes. The Hel attempted to chase off the interdictors only to see a cynosural beacon suddenly lit up near it, heralding the arrival of Pandemic Legion’s capitals. The battleship fleet itself joined the capitals shortly, and the entire force targeted the super carrier.
The Hel didn’t waste time and raised the alarm, lighting a cynosural beacon for reinforcements to come through. However the Hel itself was quickly destroyed, decimated by the combined fire power of nearly 80 combat ships. As the cynosural beacon dissipated, a lone Leviathan titan managed to jump through, landing near the Pandemic Legion fleet. Pandemic Legion was surprised but quickly overcame its initial shock and targeted the new comer while maintaining a firm grasp on the two Rorquals.
A mobile cynosural beacon was hastily deployed but the Leviathan managed to light its own cynosural beacon allowing Goonswarm Federation forces to come through. The Pandemic Legion fleet attempted to break through the robust shields of the titan but soon had to contend with force auxiliaries which jumped through the lit beacon in an attempt to save the tackled ship. Time and again the Pandemic Legion fleet had to switch off the titan, dispatching the force auxiliaries which landed one by one. Each time the grid was cleared of hostile capitals the battleships and dreadnoughts went back to bombarding the titan.
In this process the two Rorquals were destroyed adding to the death tally. Pandemic Legion though was starting to lose mainline ships. Having nearly no logistics backbone, battleships and dreadnoughts were brought down with relative ease by the assembled Goonswarm Federation forces. Finally Goonswarm Federation managed to assemble a large super capital armada. The force hit the grid and targeted the hostile ships.
Doomsday after doomsday device fired, sending light beams that brought down dreadnoughts upon contact. Dreadnoughts and combat carriers opened fire on the assembled battleships, ripping them to shreds with monstrous cannon fire and scores of fighters. The grid lit up with explosions as Pandemic Legion’s ships exploded in rapid succession. Pandemic Legion didn’t back down or contemplated retreat, instead taking down more force auxiliaries so it may destroy the titan.
The Leviathan shields were brought down to 10% strength when remote shield transfers managed to stabilize them, saving the ship. The Pandemic Legion fleet had been almost annihilated by that point and had only a fraction of the firepower needed to overcome the numerous force auxiliaries littering the grid which supported the distressed behemoth. With the titan saved, Goonswarm Federation forces continued to fire on the intruders, bent on annihilating the entire fleet. Only a few ships escaped the slaughter, the majority of the Pandemic Legion fleet destroyed.
With Pandemic Legion dispatched, the Goonswarm Federation forces extracted their ships, ending the fight. For Pandemic Legion though, the main goal had been accomplished and their contract fulfilled for the price of a few left over ships.
Battle report for the Y-OMTZ system can be found here.
All told the battle lasted 8 minutes with Time Dilation not reported and the system hosting an estimated 280 pilots at the height of the fighting.
Pandemic Legion lost 67 ships including 14 dreadnoughts, 2 combat carriers and 1 force auxiliaries as well as 42 battleships for a total of 55.93 billion ISK damage.
Goonswarm Federation lost 13 ships including a super carrier, 2 capital industrial ships, 8 force auxiliaries and a combat carrier for a total of 66.62 billion ISK damage.
Salivan Harddin is a member of Hoover Inc., Pandemic Legion, and covers battles across New Eden