A Short Life But A Merry One

25Mar09

About a month ago I was given the ISK to purchase a Stabber Fleet Issue by an old corp mate. I duly sent Allii to Jita and gave her orders not only to buy the faction cruiser but also to pimp it out a bit. To that end it was eventually given a Shadow Serpentis Energized Adaptive Nano Membrane and Gallente Navy Stasis Webifier. If I’m going to fly such a sexy ship I might as well get the most out of it.

A couple of weeks ago she got her first taste of real action spearheading a Tuskers Fleet that took out an Ishkur, Hawk, and Eagle trio. 99 Problems performed admirably and led the damage tables against all three ships, pretty much disposing of the two assault frigates single-handedly. She’s a fine ship to fly and I was really happy with the fitting.

Now my plan with her was always to get a feeling for her against easier targets before I took her out against bigger, tougher odds. She was given to me to lose in a ball of flames but I might as well get the most out of her before she died. To this end I’ve been pretty cautious about undocking her so far.

Last night I was feeling confident so, rather than my usual conservative approach, I undocked in the pride of my fleet and headed out for a roam. On the undock she had a slightly hairy moment with a Hurricane that wanted to play. I was able to dock up safely and with the support of Ronan and Antilles I undocked my own Hurricane to take down the offending battlecruiser.

After this initial skirmish I headed out on my roam. In Jovainnon I found Sonbalin, a Tuskers applicant, in his Incursus. There was no way he could withstand the awesome firepower of the faction cruiser and his frigate melted in 6 volleys. The next few systems were empty but I was impressed by the agility of the Stabber. I could pass through sentry guns without receiving a single shot before I got into warp. No more sitting around waiting out timers for me!

In Adirain I found a Cyclone on scan. While bouncing round a couple of celestials looking for cosmic anomalies where it might be hiding it warped to me. I quickly exited to another planet but my mind was already made up, I was going to fight him. The pilot was a couple of years older than me but I am well skilled for cruiser sized ships so felt no reason not to give it a go.

The battlecruiser warped to me again and I settled into an orbit around him while my autocannons span up with rounds of phased plasma and my ECM drones went to work. He released his own drones and I took them down quickly and easily while suffering only shield damage. So far so good. I settled into my orbit and began to lay down the hurt. Pretty quickly I got him down to 1/3 shields but he kept diving in and trying to web me down. My attention was focussed on avoiding this and I let my guns run out of ammo without restarting their firing sequence. This allowed him to recharge his shields pretty thoroughly before I started work on them again. By now I was running low on capacitor. Without boosters I only had a limited number of MWD pulses before I was dry. He took advantage of this and got me webbed and taking heavy damage. I had to get away and was scrambling to get free of his webs and get enough charge for one last pulse. Eventually it happened but by then I was deep in hull damage and as I began to hammer the warp command my ship’s structure gave way.

RIP 99 Problems But BoB Ain’t One. You were good to me while it lasted. Also thanks to Maxemus Payne for the great fight and for being a brilliant opponent. It was an absolute pleasure.

So what did I learn? Several things. First of all don’t underestimate the speed of Cyclones. With their shield tanks and capacitor boosters they are very nimble for battlecruisers. Also I learnt a fair bit about flying the Stabber Fleet Issue. Its halfway between a Stabber and a Rupture and actually needs to be flown like that. If I’d got in close earlier and tried to lay on the pain from a fairly close orbit then I’d probably have been able to rip through his shields. The extra DPS that overloading would have allowed could well have been a deciding factor. As it stands I bit off more than I could chew.

The odd thing is that I wasn’t bothered by the loss of such an expensive ship. Maybe it was because I didn’t pay for most of it but I like to think it is because I thoroughly enjoyed the fight and thought it was worth it for that alone. At the end of the day she cost about the same as a fully rigged Hurricane. Either way I will definitely be buying another once I’ve got a few more hours in regular cruisers under my belt. Maybe we’ll be seeing more of my Rupture fleet in the future.

Luckily I do have another sexy new toy working its way down to Hevrice thanks to another benefactor. It just goes to show that if you give me ISK I will turn it into good stories and hopefully even better video footage.

Oh, and Ess, I did film the fight so you’ll be seeing it soon.

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One Response to “A Short Life But A Merry One”

  1. Damn that is a nice ship, Wensley. I wish I could afford one myself 🙂 And yeah, never underestimate a cyclone, they can surprise you, even for being tier 1 battlecruisers.


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