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Period Basis: Tackled Rorqual Sparks a Battle in GR-J8B

February 27, 2017

By Salivan Harddin

GR-J8B system, Period Basis region. On the 26th of February at 17:46 EVE Standard Time, a battle erupted in the system over a tackled Rorqual industrial capital ship.

The ship in question belonged to Red Menace (RMC) coalition forces. It along with several others in the system were mining blissfully unaware of their impending doom. Snuffed Out [B B C] scouts had discovered the ships after finding a wormhole exit to the region. With the report of the mining capital ships propagated, Snuffed Out and Project.Mayhem. [16-13] organized a joint 70 pilot Tengu strategic cruiser fleet and rushed to tackle the ships. Sitting alone in a mining anomaly, the Rorqual was quickly tackled by the interloping interdictors.

Tackled, the distressed pilot of the ship quickly reported his situation, alerting RMC fleet commanders while activating his Pulse Activated Nexus Invulnerability Core (PANIC) module, thus making the ship invulnerable for several minutes. This allowed RMC fleet commanders to assemble three squadrons of capitals, mainly combat carriers supported by Minokawa force auxiliaries. Wisely, the Rorqual had a cynosural beacon fitted and it activated it to allow the rescue fleet to come to its assistance. Alongside the capitals, RMC bridged in a 50 pilot Rattlesnake battleship fleet, bringing the total number of their pilots to approximately 80.

Realizing quickly that they couldn’t fight both the Rattlesnake fleet and the combat carriers, the Tengu fleet commanders started searching for allies while increasing the range from the Rorqual and its relief force, settling around 60 to 70 kilometers from the defenders. The two sides exchanged fire, the combat carriers managing to chew through the strategic cruisers with their fighter squadrons. The Tengu fleet fired back, focusing on support ships mainly in order to reduce RMC’s ability to apply damage. The Rattlesnakes in the meantime focused their firepower on removing tackle from the field. This led to several interdictors and heavy interdictors being destroyed, loosening Snuffed Out\Project.Mayhem.’s grasp on the RMC capitals.

Unbeknownst to Snuffed Out\Project.Mayhem. fleet commanders, Test Alliance Please Ignore [TEST] had a fleet only seven jumps out. It was a 120 pilot Hurricane battlecruiser fleet defending operations to capture the last few Stain Wagon (SW) coalition systems in the Paragon Soul region. Contact was made with the fleet commander and the entire force was dispatched to aid the Tengu fleet, racing to the system. With reports of the many RMC capitals on field, the Test Alliance Please Ignore fleet commander made the decision to call for dreadnought support. Three squadrons of dreadnoughts were hastily formed and moved into range of the system while the sub capital fleet burned in to secure tackle.

The Hurricane fleet made it into the system and warped into the anomaly, arriving quite fast. The battlecruisers exited warp, landing near the battleship fleet and opened fire. Without waiting, the Test Alliance Please Ignore fleet commander gave the order to light a cynosural beacon, and ordered the dreadnoughts who raced to get into position to jump in. The cynosural beacon blazed up, ushering in the Test Alliance Please Ignore dreadnought squadrons. The dreadnoughts immediately entered their siege cycles and started targeting the RMC capital force, concentrating their firepower on the Minokawas.

RMC forces attempted to retaliate, switching their focus from the Tengu fleet to the Hurricanes. The battlecruisers proved to be extremely fragile in comparison, easily volleyed by the Rattlesnakes and fighter squadrons. Yet even as RMC forces would destroy two, three, even four Hurricanes in quick succession, they’d lose a Minokawa, which were far more important and fewer in number than the Test Alliance Please Ignore battlecruisers.

It took two minutes for the entire RMC force Minokawas to be destroyed. In the same interval, Test Alliance Please Ignore lost 10 mainline ships in comparison. With the force auxiliaries gone, the entire RMC fleet was put in terrible position. The eight force auxiliaries were the logistics wing of the RMC fleet, and their destruction allowed the attackers to make short work of combat carriers and Rattlesnakes alike.

Facing a dire situation, RMC fleet commanders ordered a full retreat. Carriers and battleships that were not tackled and free of warp disruption probes’ cover warped off or jumped out to emergency cynosural beacons. Snuffed Out\Project.Mayhem. and Test Alliance Please Ignore attempted to catch as many as they could, but the Tengu fleet in particular lacked tackle due to RMC’s previous efforts. This resulted in more than two thirds of the fleet escaping, though almost half the combat carriers were annihilated.

Dispatching stragglers, Snuffed Out\Project.Mayhem. and Test Alliance Please Ignore cleared the field, destroying in the process the Rorqual which remained tackled all the while. With the Rorqual destroyed and RMC forces abandoning the field, the two attacking fleets destroyed the abandoned fighter squadrons before extracting their own forces, bringing an end to the fight.

Battle report for the GR-J8B system can be found here.

All told the battle lasted 26 minutes with Time Dilation not reported and the system hosting an estimated 300 pilots at the peak of the fighting.

RMC forces lost 48 ships in the fight, including 9 carriers, 7 force auxiliaries, 1 industrial capital ship and 5 battleships for a total of 54.72 billion ISK damage.
Test Alliance Please Ignore and the Snuffed Out\Project.Mayhem. forces lost 36 ships including 3 strategic cruisers and 16 battlecruisers for a total of 9.55 billion ISK damage.

Salivan Harddin is a member of V0LTA, WE FORM V0LTA, and covers battles across New Eden