Friday, September 30, 2011

The growing quiet.

I have been listening to the various Eve podcasts for quite some time now. I remember becoming engaged shortly after meeting Hallan Turrek, then a member of SI Radio, when BSCL left Geminate and joined the Split Infinity Alliance.

Being that my real life job involves driving from Oklahoma City, Oklahoma to Amarillo, Texas and back I had plenty of time on my hands to listen. And boy did I hit the jackpot. Lost in Eve, Eve Commune, Voices from the Void, Fly Reckless, Notalotofnews News Hour, Pod Goo, ISK.  I listened to them all. I was struck by just how large and connected Eve's community really was.

Sadly however, there has been a decline in podcasts from the community recently. Eve Commune's last podcast was on August 20th 2011. Teg Rhind from ISK has been on hiatus since July 14th. Lost in Eve, one of the premier podcasts in this group announced it was closing it's doors as well. Even PK and Angus McDecoy from Fly Reckless seem to be falling under the malaise that many in the community are feeling.

There has been much hubbub surrounding the launch of Incarna, Monoclegate and the CSM's emergency meetings in Iceland. Since then there has been a growing sense of apathy and lack of drive in many aspects of New Eden's community. It shows up greatest amongst the blogs and podcasts. These avenues serve to bring the community together, if for nothing else than to talk about Internet Spaceships.

There is some hope, however. New podcasts are appearing, the Angry Monkey Podcast, for example. And with a little luck our fellow pilots will be able to shake off this malaise of apathy, and continue their efforts.

Uziphel99, Urizel99, Teneriffis and Split Infinity

With the fall of Geminate and our return to Empire, I went back to doing what I do best. Mining. Some people Just about everyone finds mining to be about as exciting as watching paint dry. I personally find it relaxing and it gives me time to talk to corpmates on comms. It was also a good chance to learn more about New Eden, it's people, it's politics, and it's complexity.

For this reason I created Uziphel and Urizel to be miners primarily. They ran a dedicated skill queue to fly Hulks, later picking up the additional skills needed to be competent ice miners as well. They sat in empire, while their training progressed. Meanwhile, BSCL had joined Split Infinity Alliance and I sent Urziel and Uziel to their station system in Teneriffis.

It was in S1. that I was first able to really get involved in operations at an Alliance level. The culture we found was more open and accommodating. The Alliance leader, Quivering Palm was an amiable sort and we felt like we were having more of an impact than we had as a "guest" of the NC. We were welcomed, and valued as a corp and as individuals. Which for me atleast, was a welcome change of pace.

I learned then that the station was under the ownership of the mercenary alliance, Noir Mercenary Group. While I didn't know at the time why such a group would allow a comparatively small alliance such as ourselves to control the station. It made sense that they would not be able to safeguard it while on contracts and thus needed someone else to hold sovereignty and repel attackers. With the majority of the DRF up north dismantling the NC piecemeal and being blue with most, if not all our neighbors, including the powerful southern alliance Against ALL Authorities, it seemed that aside from the occasional roam that the home front was largely secure.

Then things changed.

Teneriffis and Detorid. Sov Warfare 101

After about two months with our new alliance the decision was made to make a land grab on the unoccupied lands claimed by the DRF in Teneriffis and Detorid. The Drone Russians were busy hastening to collapse the last regions of the NC's holdings and we were confident they would not come back to reclaim the much lower value systems they were losing in favor of establishing their new prize land in the north (the only source of the valuable moon mineral Technetium). Initially there was no response during the Teneriffis campaign, systems were taken with impunity with SI getting a constellation a few jumps from our home system. Detorid however, was a different story.

We took sovereignty easy enough initially. The system's PoS structures were long ago abandoned and there was little if any resistance. When we took the station system in 3-LJW3 however, there was resistance and an epic battle that is dutifully retold by QP himself here.

Sadly it wasn't to last. By this time the DRF had eviscerated what was left of the once great Northern Coalition. They then turned to look back on us. And they were more than a little pissed. Apparently that part of 0.0 was special to them. I personally think they just want all of it at any cost. Needless to say they were able to turn back us and our Imperial Order and Dirt Nap Squad allies with little effort. Within a month S1. held no sov in Detorid.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Uziel99 and the fall of Geminate

Shortly after arriving in Geminate, as a guest of Brick Squad, I created Uziel99 to be my primary combat pilot. He began humbly enough, using a variant of the ten-hour hero trick I bought him several Merlin frigates with a MWD, point, web and two cheap railguns. It wasn't much to look at, especially in a fleet of battlecruisers and battleships but it was something.

I was sadly unable to participate in the major battles of the Geminate campaign, but I learned a few fun lessons about null-sec and sovereignty. I also started realizing just how much money these large coalitions threw around. I remember looking at the battle reports from Uemon's "Valentine's Day Massacre" and wincing. It was then I realized I would need something much bigger than a Merlin or Caracal. And that meant getting more ISK and a lot more experience.

As SOLAR FLEET began moving in, we left our guest alliance and briefly returned to Empire before setting out on our next nullsec excursion.

Monday, September 26, 2011

OK, who the heck is this guy?

I am Urziel99 and I welcome you to my blog. Here I will chronicle my experiences in Eve Online. Both in-game and in the metagame.

I came to Eve in January of this year by way of a different MMO, Fallen Earth. I had just left WoW after having spent two years there as a raid leader and guild officer and was ready for a change. What first struck me about Eve was that it was incredibly non-linear. After being in a game where the "end-game" was clearly defined as either high-end PvE, (25-man Raids) or high-end PvP, (Arena Teams) the thought of being able to go out and make your own fun appealed to me.

In my time in Fallen Earth I meet a fellow by the name of Asander. He was a member of a multi-game clan (Wolves of War) that I had recently joined. I would see him occasionally in the Eve Ventrillo channel alone. Being the curious type I decided to see what the game was really all about.

He gave me a 21-day trial, along with a couple of other members of the Wolves. I eagerly signed up and downloaded the client. I completed my first few missions with no difficulty. Then that I encountered the infamous Learning Cliff. But I had an ace in the hole. Asander (who uses different names in this game) had 3 accounts that were several years old. He was a vast fountain of knowledge and was able to break it down to essentials quite well.

After a few weeks I was mining with my mentor and our two other pups in high-sec watching his 2 Hulks and Orca in jealous awe as they made asteroids vanish. Meanwhile, I was relegated to a Tormentor class mining frigate. During that time I learned more about the game, it's mechanics, and it's politics. About that time the other two pups gave up and I had joined the corp Asander was part of, BSC Legion. The Legion was at that time based in Kador low-sec and would shortly thereafter be moving to Geminate. At the time I was not aware of the existence of the Drone Russians or the Northern Coalition, to say nothing of their conflict. I would find out on the battlefield.