Thursday, December 27, 2012

WTF kind of alliance is ...

Join our aliiance.
So I haven't been entirely satisfied with the rate at which the movement has been growing. We have steadily grown up to about 16 members or so in a month of recruiting. This isn't bad for a start, but some are more active than others, and there are several timezones involved. The bottom line is that the local PvP activity is fairly intense, and where we are not an elite crew by any measure, if we are going to win many real victories we are going to need numbers on our side. Not huge mega-blob numbers necessarily  but I'd like to get to the point where I can call for a fleet and get 10 people or so to show up. That is the point at which I think the quality of gameplay will take a serious turn for the better for our little group.

It seems like the best way to get there is to be a part of an alliance. Since we started becoming active in Curse, I have been approached by several small alliances who have shown some interest in having the Revolutionary Front become a member corporation. I have been tempted to accept some of these offers in the interest of rapidly improving our opportunities for fleet action. The downside is that joining somebody else's alliance means sacrificing our own vision and our own autonomy to help somebody else achieve their goals. Sure, it would be the easiest path to EVE success, but I have never been good at doing things the easy way, when I can do them the right way.

Failscade Inevitable?
So I've decided to take the step of forming my own alliance. Then I'm going to see if I can attract some more small corporations who share my own views of the game to join. Essentially, rather than recruiting people one at a time, I'll be recruiting in fives and tens and fifteens. I'm not sure how well this will work out, but I think it is worth a shot. I'm thinking along the lines of going after the kinds of groups who don't really know what they are doing and lacking direction and purpose, then get them roaming with our fleets and suck them into the fold. Even week old corporations full of noobs who think they want to do industrial things may be fine, as I have found that if you give a new player a taste of blood and a sense that he is part of a movement he will quickly grow to understand what EVE is really all about.

Of course, this is all in the planning stages. The first thing I need to decide is what the new alliance will be called and what its ticker will be. The obvious thing would be to call it some variation of Revolutionary Front. Something like United Revolutionary Front or New Eden Revolutionary Front (NERF), or something related like Anarchists Union or Revolutionary Council. I can think of a hundred possible names like that, but I wasn't convinced that I had the most creative and memorable ideas. So I put it out there on several EVE forums that I was looking for suggestions for an alliance name, and hinted that there would probably be fabulous prizes if somebody gave me a name that I end up using. Here is some of what they came up with

Fluffed Sheep Alliance logo
Space Nerds in Revolt
Fluffed Sheep (BAAA.)
Sheep Fluffers (wtf?)
Failscade Inevitable (FAIL. - you're going on the list, LanFear TyRaX)
Test Alliance Do Not Ignore
MARX (both alliance name and ticker)
REAL alliance please notice
Space intentionally left ganked
Twisted Technetium
Insert Alliance Name Here
Failboat Roamers
Old Hands Always Impress (OHAI)
Spaceship Hating Internet Thugs (SHIT)
Autocannons Anonymous
Singularity Solidarity Party
No Name Nullsec Nomads (NNNN)

Yeah, I'm definitely not satisfied yet. I need a name that will simultaneously terrify my enemies, be hilariously funny, and be instantly memorable for everyone that sees it. Bonus points if it also ties into the Revolutionary theme somehow. I invite you, internet people, to come up with something better.

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Early Roams - Kamikaze Death

For the last two weeks I have been holding scheduled fleet ops on Friday evenings. So far the turnout has been pretty small (2-3 players) although the guys have been going out on casual, unscheduled roams every day of the week and getting fights as well. Because most of the guys are very new and have very low SP, I cooked up the most simple doctrine I could come up with, cheaply fit kamikaze-style frigates that can move fast, take out solo targets up to BCs, and suicidally pick a higher value target out of a fleet and attack it, relying on tank, low sig radius, and tank to survive just long enough to take it out. I've used these sorts of fleets to great effect in other corps, when I have had 5-10 members join in.

Unfortunately, so far we haven't had enough participation to really pull it off. With only 2 or 3 guys, and me the only one with any SP, we just haven't been able to be successful. I am going to keep taking these out, however, as I continue to recruit, as I suspect if we can just get a few more guys we will be pretty well off. I think I'll start encouraging the use of T1 fit destroyers to increase our DPS on the field with the crew we have. Here is a brief after action report on our first two scheduled ops.

Week 1 - Party-Pooped by Lame Falcon Pilot
For our first scheduled op we got 3 pilots to show up, 2 pretty new guys and myself. We got into our frigates and set out from our HQ looking for something to kill. A few jumps away we passed through HLW, a system where Northern Coalition. has set up camp, and played some cat and mouse games while they tried to catch us. They failed, and we decided to move on and look for less blobby targets.

A couple of jumps later we were sitting on a gate, with one other pilot in system, evidently in something cloaky, as we were unable to locate him on d-scan. That assumption was about to be proved correct. As we orbited the gate, a Dramiel jumped into us. He was from a different alliance than the other guy in system, so I crossed my fingers that they weren't related and ordered the attack. A dram seemed like a perfect target for our pretty green crew of 2 Merlins and a Rifter.

Scram, webs, and guns were fired up and cycling, the Dram was stuck in blaster range and going down fast when another white box popped up on the overview, and quickly became a yellow, then a red box. The other guy in local turned out to be flying a Falcon, who decloaked on top of us, jammed us, and took us out as the Dramiel escaped in low structure.

Week 2 - Hawk on Bubble
This week's scheduled roam took us out of Curse, into the Great Wildlands, and into Scalding Pass. There were only 2 of us available at the scheduled time, a few more had said they could come later, but I decided the two of us could head out anyway, and then maybe do another roam when more people were available. I was flying a Breacher, a newly rebalanced ship that I was playing with. My comrade was in a Rifter.

Anyway, we spent a little time in Scalding Pass dodging some alliance war-type blobs, while we poked around looking for targets and generally making a loop back around to Curse. Some more guys logged on and said they wanted to join us, so we began making best speed back to our home system. On the way back, a poorly planned warp landed us in a bubble and right on top of a solo Hawk. This was the kind of fight I would have loved to take with 2 more guys with us, but with just the 2 of us prospects were bleak.

I gave my comrade notice that we were pretty much fucked and might as well go down in a blaze of glory, then overheated everything and engaged. We managed to dig pretty deep in his shields, but the end result was pretty much a foregone conclusion. Assault frigs tear through T1 frigs as a general rule. My fleetmate managed to get his pod out, but I was stuck in the bubble and got an express ride home.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Opening Chapter - Curse

A few weeks have gone by since I declared war on the universe, so I thought I'd fill you in on how things have been developing. After creating the corporation Revolutionary Front, I had my combat alt Kalim Dabo scout around in NPC nullsec for a suitable home for us. It was a bit of a toss-up between Syndicate and Curse as a region. The recent departure of Agony Unleashed and Rote Kappelle have left something of a power gap in Syndicate lately, with a lot of smaller alliances moving in to fill the void, and tactically significant stations temporarily vacant. Curse, by comparison, has been pretty hot, with the usual smaller alliances there and recent deployments by significant nullsec players like -A- and NC.

In the end I decided on LJ-YSW in Curse as a home base. It is a relatively quiet system with cloning facilities pinched in between systems held by Flying Dangerous. and DarkSide. (I refuse to put a period after my corp name on general principles.)

Having decided on a base, I started recruitment efforts. Pretty soon we had our first member, a guy named Durzo, who came right out to LJ and within hours had scored the first kill for the Revolution. It was some poor jackoff in a Velator, passing through the system. A fitting way to begin a new killboard, with the rookie ships. Actually, when he scored the kill I didn't yet have a killboard set up, so that was my next project.

We recruited a half-dozen or so foolish guinea pigs  brave souls within the first couple of days, then I was unexpectedly cut off from internet service for about a week and a half due to a move in real life, and they were left to their own devices. When I returned, I found that they had recruited a few more comrades who were waiting for me to approve their apps. Among them was DT, a veteran player and an old pro PvPer with almost 2000 kills to his name. Very soon our killboard started looking much less bleak.

Once I was again able to log in regularly, we began to recruit some more new guys. We lost a few to attrition, but that is to be expected, as we don't yet have much in the way of resources or support fro our new members. We are making fast progress, though. We now have a killboard, forums, voice comms (Ventrilo), a limited ship replacement program, and regularly scheduled fleet ops. As we build our numbers, more good things will come.