The battle was prompted by Siege Green.. The alliance had been aggressively targeting Shadow Cartel towers in the area as the two continue to fight over the few valuable moons in the region. This led to a few bloody battles between the alliances. When Siege Green. reinforced the tower in question, Shadow Cartel prepared for another bitter fight. Alongside Did he say Jump [JMP-N] it formed a 90 pilot Rattlesnake battleship fleet including three Minokawa force auxiliaries to defend the tower.
The force bridged to the system before setting up on the tower itself, preparing to face Siege Green.. Siege Green. itself was unable to muster large numbers, managing to gather only 40 pilots in a Machariel battleship fleet. However even with low numbers and using Apostle force auxiliaries as a logistics wing supplement, the alliance was certain in its ability to mitigate the Rattlesnakes’ damage using a technique called “Firewalling”. The technique uses a battleship fitted with a full rack of smartbombs and positioning it between the main fleet and the hostile force. The smartbombs are able to damage and destroy the missiles themselves in flight thus negating much of the incoming damage. However such a technique requires alertness and constant re-positioning on the grid.
The Siege Green. fleet took gates, entering the system and aligning towards the tower. Shadow Cartel fleet commanders waited in anticipation for Siege Green.’s next move. The Machariel fleet with its force auxiliaries initiated warp, exiting a few moments later and landing near the Rattlesnake fleet itself. The two fleets met at near point blank range. The Rattlesnake fleet opened fire immediately, targeting the Siege Green. mainline ships while applying heavy energy neutralizers to the Apostles in order to shut down the Machariel fleet’s logistics wing.
The Machariels returned fire, blasting the Rattlesnakes with autocannon rounds. However the battleships easily withstood the firestorm and returned fire, unleashing cruise missile barrages and heavy drones on the Machariels. The Siege Green. ships were unable to withstand the magnitude of the firepower and caved in, their force auxiliaries unable to lock ships in time before they exploded in bright orange flashes. One of the first casualties was the Typhoon battleship fitted to serve as a “Firewall”. Without the Typhoon, there was no way for Siege Green. to mitigate the incoming damage as the Rattlesnake fleet volleyed ship after ship.
Shadow Cartel decided to finish the fight and concentrated its considerable firepower on the struggling force auxiliaries. The two Apostles came under heavy fire as the Rattlesnake fleet hurled everything it had at the ships. The fleet had also lit a cynosural beacon to let through a dreadnought squadron it had held in reserve. The dreadnoughts materialized on grid and entered their siege cycles, focusing their firepower on one Apostle while the Rattlesnake fleet chewed through the other. The two ships fell within a minute of each other, depriving Siege Green. of their logistics wing. Siege Green. quickly reacted, lighting its own cynosural beacon and bringing through it fresh force auxiliaries as well as a combat carrier squadron. The combat carriers launched their fighter squadrons and targeted the the Rattlesnake fleet.
Shadow Cartel had its own counter, bringing through its still lit beacon three combat carriers of its own. The combat carriers had been loaded with space superiority fighters and quickly targeted the hostile fighters, tearing them apart. Siege Green. did receive some reinforcements of its own in the form of 20 Proteus strategic cruisers belonging to Pen Is Out [WANGS] and Snuffed Out [B B C]. The strategic cruisers warped at medium range of the fray and added their firepower but by then nearly half the Siege Green. fleet had been destroyed.
Shadow Cartel proved to have the upper hand and continued to press its advantage, turning on the remaining battleships and combat carriers. Machariels continued to fall to the missile salvos of the Rattlesnakes as the combat carriers were torn apart by the dreadnoughts. Within minutes most of the Siege Green. fleet was annihilated, the battleships unable to escape due to many of the Shadow Cartel Rattlesnakes fitting warp scramblers and disruptors to their ships. A few of the combat carriers managed to escape as well as the Snuffed Out\Pen Is Out strategic cruisers which had remained on the cusp of the fighting.
The Rattlesnake fleet moved to dispatch any stragglers, destroying the remaining ships it had tackled. With the last Siege Green. battleships removed the fleet had control of the grid and proceeded to loot the wrecks while restoring the tower’s shields. With the tower secured and all valuables salvaged, the fleet extracted, bringing an end to the fighting.
Battle report for the Noranim system can be found here.
All told the battle lasted 14 minutes with Time Dilation not reported and the system itself hosting an estimated 200 pilots.
Shadow Cartel and allies lost 1 battleship during the fight for a 452 million ISK damage.
Siege Green. and allies lost 48 ships including 5 combat carriers, 5 force auxiliaries, 1 dreadnought and 27 battleships for a total of 38.9 billion ISK damage.
Salivan Harddin is a member of Hoover Inc., Pandemic Legion, and covers battles across New Eden