Friday, October 31, 2014

Anomic Agent Statistics II

Let's move this post to the end of the month for updating.  Look for another update around 11/30.

I've now been offered 20 total Anomic agent missions.  The breakdown is 13 Solo Anomic Agents, and 7 Team Anomic Agents.

I have a 75.0% overall success rate (as in, I accepted and completed the mission).
I have a 15.0% overall decline rate (as in, I was a pansy and didn't accept the mission).
I have a 10.0% overall failure rate (failure defined as I accepted the mission, got my teeth kicked in, and then punted the mission).

I have faced all of the Solo burners but have not yet defeated the Blood Raider Cruor.  Assault Frigs 5 and Thermodynamics 5 are now mine, so we'll see how things go next time he's offered.

I have faced and defeated all of the Team Burners except the Enyo.

Offer rate is averaging every 6.0 vanilla level 4 missions.  This is greatly offset by my run of ~25 or so missions between the first and second offer back at the very start.  I was down around 5:1 at some point last week but had a bad run this week that pushed the average back up.

I have lost 5 total ships (no additional since last time, knock on wood):  2x Vengeance, 2x Daredevil, and 1x Retribution.  Total loss value of killmails is 255M isk, (355M total, minus the ~100M isk of recovered faction/t2 from the Retribution).


What's Playing:  The Black Keys, Brothers, Next Girl

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Minutes

If you hadn't seen already, the CSM9 Summer Summit Minutes are out.

I haven't finished reading them - busy afternoon at work, hehe.  They are lengthy but are worth your time.

I thought this quote was interesting, based on some of the data I'd been gathering and reporting here:
Moving on, CCP Fozzie talked about the four new burner missions in Oceanus. "The burners have been  cutting a swath through new eden, you saw the graphs." Mike Azariah complained about the lack of a  graph comparing the number of graphs in the blog to other graphs. CCP Fozzie noted that the most  expensive loss was 2.1 billion isk, and that almost all of the most expensive losses were people who simply tried to omni-tank. Mynnna commented that it makes perfect sense from someone who doesn't read the mission text, because it's not necessary in L4s - an omni-tank is just fine. "I don't think I even have hardeners on my Vargur."
Mike asked what the chances of getting a burner mission was. Fozzie explained that it's the same chance as any other mission - burner missions are just another option in the pool. They do want to add still more in the future, though Fozzie explained they'll be dropping the chances of each burner mission appearing to a fraction of the normal mission rate, so that the odds of getting any burner mission won't double outright.

And this one struck a chord with me.  Topic was Veteran Player Retention.  It pretty much sums up how I feel right now (bold underline added for emphasis):
Sugar Kyle - I think the improved health is showing through. The complaints are changing. The things that bother people are changing. And that is why they are desiring newer things because they are not desiring very basic changes in the same way.

The recipe for Steve Ronuken's bolognese sauce was a very nice easter egg.


What's Playing:  TOOL, Aenima, Eulogy

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Skill Check!

Back in the old old corp, the cry of SKILL CHECK would result in everyone bragging, whining, or otherwise reporting what they were training that very moment.

As Grand Emperor(tm) and CEO, it was one of those things that I used to wake up the chat when things were too quiet.  Few could resist the urge to shout out, even those "supposedely" afk.

I used to know the exact date that Pukin' Dogs was founded.  It's somewhere around October 20th, 2002.  So in honor of our dozen or so years as a corp, here's my skill check:


Abavus will finish Thermodynamics 5 early tomorrow.  He finished Assault Frigs 5 just before that.  Looking at EVEmon, I have a whole gaggle of long skills, almost all of them focused around small (and some mid-) sized ship combat.  Bleh, not fun.  But hopefully useful.

Next up:  Small Blaster Specialization 5.

Primary Alt 'M' will finish Light Missiles 5 a few hours after Thermodynamics finishes on Abavus.  She's got fair to good turret skills, excellent fitting and tank, so have been chewing on some missile skills to help with Burners.

Next up for her:  Guided Missile Precision 4.

Happy Birthday [PUKE], we'll keep the lights on.


What's playing:  TOOL:  10,000 Days, Wings For Marie

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Sunday Morning Coffee

Here's a random post while I have my Sunday Coffee....

Last night I cashed out some SOE points and built some Asteros.  Was the first time I'd truly used the new Industry UI.  I'd fiddled a bit, but hadn't done any "serious" production.  For me, building 14xAsteros qualified as "serious."  I really like the UI, though building each individually from a 1-run bpc was tedious.  Makes me want to fire up the old Apoc factory I used to run ... too bad I sold that bpo.

I've been gone the past several days for work, relying on Blogger to robo-post the last few entries in my absence.  I haven't done very much in game, and barely kept up with game news while I was away (12-14 hr days, plus beers with the team after, I barely had enough time to sleep).

Once back home and somewhat settled, I did pull a Team Hawk burner mission yesterday.  I confirmed that you couldn't kite him in a t2-fitted Kestrel, nor a t2-fitted Hawk.  There were no ship losses involved, but neither had the dps to kill the first logi.  I pulled out the Garmur and melted his face.

The Garmur is a beast.

I may revisit the Kestrel fit later, as it's about 2% the cost of my Garmur fit at under 10M isk, including faction ammo.  I need to get smarter on rigs and explosion radii and such.  I'd love to find a cheap/disposable multi-box setup for Team burners and will keep pushing.

I talked in game with a few random friends about Burners.  One person started linking their losses with a "I'm done" at the end.  I wonder how well they're going over across the entire server.  I'll update my stats sometime, but my avg success rate continues to climb (I'm north of 70% now).   I hope that there's enough interest for CCP to continue to develop them.

As I type, I'm monkeying with pyfa.  I've been using EFT lately, and it's a fine tool.  The version I have is maybe dated and didn't seem to have any of the faction modules (or the Garmur) I've been playing with.  And Pyfa feels a little more polished.  I think I'm going to switch.

Time for more coffee.

What's Playing:  Nothing!

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Chasing the Excitement

Was talking with Mrs. Durden recently about why I'm grinding so many missions.  This quote basically sums it up:
"... I got that 'excited/scared' feeling. Like 98% excited, 2% scared. Or maybe it's more - It could be two - it could be 98% scared, 2% excited but that's what makes it so intense, it's so - confused. I can't really figure it out."  - Oscar, Armageddon

 There's something addictive about running missions. Every time I hit the 'request mission' button there's that moment of excitement/panic while the screen reloads.  What will it be? Another Damsel to save or will it be an Anomic?

And then there's the inevitable result.  It's either a feeling of disappointment/relief if it's another vanilla lvl4.  Or it's a feeling of 'oh crap' when it's an Anomic, ... a mix of panic and excitement and a little apprehension.

I've been reminded a few times lately that in the early days, EVERY lvl4 had this mix of feelings.  Many missions could be solo'd in a meta4 Raven.  Many couldn't.  Some missions needed a few buddies.  Some missions just straight got declined.  Thanks to perfect skills, gang bonuses, and min/max fits, today we chase lvl4's in HACs, Tech3s, and BCs.

Some people complain that Burners are too hard.  While I don't like losing ships, I'll say that for me they're tuned about right.  Any harder, and I'd punt most.  Any easier, and you wouldn't get the semi-addictive emotional rollercoaster that comes with clicking buttons.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Team Burner #5 - Hawk Down

The Hawk Team has been vanquished.


The RNG gods are smiling upon me this weekend, as I've not only been pulling a lot of Burners in rapid succession, I'm also getting some of the flavors I hadn't seen yet.  I now only need 1 other Team and still need to conquer the Solo Blood Raider/Cruor and I will have done them all.


Sunday, October 19, 2014

Anomic Agent #13 - First Serpentis Kill

***WARNING***
 - 15 JANUARY - 
THIS BURNER HAS BEEN UPGRADED BY CCP IN THE PROTEUS PATCH. THIS FIT IS NOW CONSIDERED UNVERIFIED.
***WARNING***


Ding dong, the Serpentis Witch is Dead.



Finally, something I can use with my Hawk!

I initially tried the fit that I'd used for the Worm Experiments, swapping only Light Missiles for Rocket Launchers and upgrading the shield hardener to t2.  Tank was solid with an off grid booster, but I couldn't deal dps effectively to a small/fast target and decided to meander off grid for a different setup.  After 10 minutes, I'd traveled only a little ways and decided just to logoffski and wait out the aggro timer.  Upon logging back in, I found my ship to be at 37% structure.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Team Anomic Agent #4 - Vengeance

*** FITS VERIFIED PROTEUS JANUARY 2015 ***

The Vengeance Team burner popped this morning, so I have another entry to make in my Anomic Agent Info Page.



I started with the usual research and found that my Garmur fit used for the Jaguar was still viable with an ammo swap.  Today we'd be using Navy Nova to knock down the Logi ships, then Inferno to pop the Vengeance.  I've done the Jag a total of 3 times now and really haven't had any issues once I got the Garmur.  Seemed straightforward, right?


Friday, October 17, 2014

Go Orbit a Station

I have a challenge for you - Go orbit a station.

When you have nothing better to do in highsec - undock.  Pick something small, nimble, maybe sexy.  Drop in the t2 prop mod and speed boosts, set your orbit to 100km and zip around.

I've been struck lately by the vitality of some systems.  It's something I'd forgotten.

You see, in the days before warp-to-zero (WTZ) gates, we all had to slowboat in from autopilot distance.  Each gate.  Every time.  It was a tedious way to travel, and made the route from A to Z a true journey.

I'm not advocating the removal of WTZ gates and stations.  I enjoy/abuse the feature as much as anyone.  But I also think that when you're flashing from gate to gate in a click frenzy, you miss out on BEING IN SPACE and watching other ships come and go.  The humanity of it all escapes us, and EVE quickly becomes a very memory-intensive chat app.

Recently, CCP added a flash graphic and a little 'fffump' sound effect when people drop from warp around you.  It's such a subtle thing, but it's made a big impact on me as I'm coming and going.  Each time there's a flash or a thump, it means someone else, some other player, is doing something near me.

So, sometime when you've got nothing better to do ... instead of sitting in station spinning your ship ... just undock.  Take a look outside at the ships - the players - coming and going.  I hope I'm not overselling it, but it makes space feel alive. Thriving. Human.




Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Anomic Agent Statistics

Being a nerd, and an EVE player, I had to make a spreadsheet to track Anomic Agents.

I've now been offered 11 Solo Anomic Agents, and 2 Team Anomic Agents.

I have a 61.5% overall success rate (as in, I accepted and completed the mission).
I have a 23.1% overall decline rate (as in, I was a pansy and didn't accept the mission).
I have a 15.4% overall failure rate (failure defined as I accepted the mission, got my teeth kicked in, and then punted the mission).

I have faced all of the Solo burners except the Serpentis/Daredevil.  Both of the Team Agents have been the Jaguar.

Offer rate is averaging about every 6.8 vanilla level 4 missions.  This is greatly offset by my run of ~25 or so missions before getting the 2nd offer.  I expect this average to come down with time.  Lately I've been running more like 3:1.

I have lost 5 total ships:  2x Vengeance, 2x Daredevil, and 1x Retribution.  Total loss value of killmails is 255M isk, (355M total, minus the ~100M isk of recovered faction/t2 from the Retribution).

At an average of ~12k LP per offer, I have gained ~96k LP for the 8 successful missions to date.  The 12k LP is an assumed number; my agent typically offers 10k or 14k).

Monday, October 13, 2014

Anomic Agent Info Summary

I've added a new tab on the menu (up there ^^^^) to try to condense all of my burner experiences.  If you're a regular reader, it's just a summary of many of the posts you've already seen.

However, as the postcount here continues to rise, wanted to get my arms around this info before it got too unwieldy.

Free (Test) Titans - Pictures

Here's the rest of my shenanigans with Titans on the test server.  See previous post for generic instructions on how to participate.

However, a few more hints:
1. Move to the test system BEFORE redeeming your Titans.  You'll save yourself some fuss when it comes time to fit ships, as well as having everything in one spot so you can try multiple ships.

2. There is one racial Doomsday per Titan flavor.  For the Avatar, it's Judgement.

3. Each doomsday takes fuel to use (75k isotopes per cycle).  Each one is racial, check yours for the type.  Don't undock without a full belly of fuel.

4. When I was on, there were pickup fleets forming in local.  Highly recommended.  Be a part of the wolfpack, not one of the deer.

5.  I don't know if CCP condones it, but you CAN undock in highsec and monkey around.  Other than a few shots in the belt and doing some gratuitous warping around, there's not much point.

Pictures after the break!

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Search and Rescue Operations

So, let's say you got offered the Sansha Anomic Agent (single).

You've done him before, so no worries.  You dust off your Retribution, and dive in.

Things go well - you have him down in armor and your tank is holding.  And then... the unthinkable.  You, the "veteran" EVE player, manage to burn out your rack of guns, right when you were so near to glory.

Death is now a foregone conclusion.  He reps up and grinds you down before you can slowboat off grid.

It happens.  Time to shrug and get another ship.

But let's say there's ~100M isk worth of faction webs and t2 guns/misc in your wreck.  Gosh, it would be nice if you could get to them.

This fit let me recover gracefully from disaster this morning.
 [Vengeance, Sansha Burner Wreck Recovery]
Small Armor Repairer II
Armor EM Hardener II
Small Armor Repairer II
Armor Thermic Hardener II 
Cap Recharger II
Cap Recharger II
Cap Recharger II 
Empty High Slot x5 
Small Capacitor Control Circuit I
Small Bay Loading Accelerator I
It could be tankier, but I didn't feel like getting different rigs.  It is cap stable with my skills.  With an off grid booster running, I rarely went below 90% armor (a chain of smashing' hits, I think), but with the armor reps running out of phase (Start the 2nd SARII about halfway through the first's cycle), I was normally bouncing between 95% and 100% armor.

No prop mod means a slowboat off grid under web, but faction webs are faction webs.  Use the time to think about why you don't have Thermodynamics to rank 5 yet.

I guess I should have fit a salvager, too.

Happy Sunday.


What's Playing:  Led Zeppelin, How the West Was Won (Live), Black Dog

Friday, October 10, 2014

Phoebe - Lots of New Stuff, No New Burners, Free Titans

This will be a jumbled post, so bear with me...

Part I:
New dev blog today gives the major features of the next patch (codename: Phoebe).  Lots of cool stuff.  I like the unlimited skill queue, obviously.

No new burners.  Expecting content for 3 patches in a row was probably too much to ask.  I'll be sure to poke Sugar sometime soon and see if we can get more info from the devs on how burners are being received by the players..

For PVE/Missioneers, the following statement is interesting.  The old agent UI is pretty stale, so looking forward to the new detail (if it looks anything like the sexy new Industry UI, I'll be VERY happy).
Mission Objectives Guidance
New information in the Agent Mission info panel will direct you to what you need to do next in your mission to complete it. An upcoming dev blog will go into details on this new feature.
Side note:  The new notifications and sensor overlay look sweet.  It seems reasonably obvious now that the EVE client is getting a major UI overhaul.  I was skeptical on some of this stuff (I'm an oldskool guy and still use rightclick for everything) but I like what I see on Sisi.

-----

Part II:  Free Titans

If you haven't heard, you can currently get free Titans on the test server (aka Sisi) to try out the new jump/gate mechanics for capships. And of course, blow the snot out of people with the DD.

Details here.  It's pretty simple - patch up the Sisi client (see this Wiki entry), login, go to the 'moveme' channel and type 'moveme' to get ported out to Syndicate 0.0.  Then type 'capitalships' and get free skillpoints.  Logout, claim your Titans at the login screen. Have fun on the cheaply seed SISI market, then go kick some ass.

If you choose not to get ported to Syndicate first, you can still use the 'moveme' channel after.  But one hint: BEFORE YOU ACCEPT YOUR SHINY TITANS.... make sure you're at a station that has all the items seeded for 100 isk.  Trust me.

This "testing" may go on for at least a little while, according to CCP Claymore.


I immediately went and bought enough miner2's to outfit an Avatar.  Damn right.

There might or might not have been some omber mined in highsec before I moved the titan (my alt's Leviathan is in the background looking mean).



Also bought a somewhat 'real' fit, at least with real guns.  I know nothing about capship fits, so went for a hull tanking, double armor rep, to maximize my time on grid before the inevitable end.  More on this in a future post.


Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Single Anomic Agent #7 - Guristas II

*** FITS VERIFIED PROTEUS JANUARY 2015 ***

Another dead worm!

This one was offered after 4 completed and 2 declined vanilla missions.  Three of the completed missions were a series, if that matters.

This will probably be the last battle report for repeat content.  I feel like I'm jamming up the place with all this.



But since I'm already typing -- I used the same Daredevil setup as last time, made sure my mods were repaired and I had plenty of ammo and cap boosters.  Same strat - warp in, run under the missile barrage and then web his squirmy butt down and blasterate holes in his ship from as close to 0km as I can get.

I thought I botched the attempt, as I forgot to turn the mwd off after pinning him down with the web.  Cost me a little cap, but I recovered, and my cat has heard me swear plenty before today.

I managed overheat better, killed him with 4/ea Cap Booster 400's in my cargo (I had zero remaining last time).

PS:  Loot sucked.

UPDATE:  Single Anomic Agent #8 was offered back-to-back with #7.  It's the Blood / Cruor, which is currently the only Burner I've been offered that I can't do.  I declined it - I don't need to lose a ship that bad right now. See also I am a Statistic.

What's Playing:  Grouplove, Colours

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Single Anomic Agent #6 - Angel Burner

(Posting a day later to help spread things out...)

New record for me, I completed 1 vanilla mission and another Anomic Agent was offered.

This one was the Angel, which I had previously completed.  I used the same fit and killed Mr. Angel without overheat.  In the spirit of full disclosure: I did have my link alt running.



Not much of a battle report. I spent more time checking my fit than in the pocket to make sure I didn't mess something up (hint:  I had).

Warp in, approach, target, web/launchers, turn on SARII with shields at 20%. Profit.

Faction loot!  1000x Domination Carbonized Lead S, worth about 89k for the stack. :)

What's Playing:  Mad Season, Wake Up

Monday, October 6, 2014

Anomic Team #1

*** WARNING NOT YET VERIFIED FOR LATEST PATCH ***
*** WARNING NOT YET VERIFIED FOR LATEST PATCH ***

Another Anomic mission, this time it's the new team variety!  For those keeping score at home, it was offered after 8 successful and 2 declined vanilla lvl4s.



Here's the mission text, with my emphasis added in bold:
Anomic Team
I have a special optional mission for you, we won’t penalize you if you decline it.
A crack commando team, former members of the Republic Fleet, have struck out on their own. We don't know why, but we want you to hunt them down. 
 
They have all scans open, so we can't go there in force. We've acquired their coordinates and need someone to sneak in and take them out. It's you against them.  
Only frigate sized ships can gain entry to the hideout, so don’t try to bring anything bigger. 
The leader of this gang flies a Jaguar-class Assault Frigate. She fits her ship with Autocannons loaded with Republic Fleet Fusion ammo, and never leaves home without a Stasis Webifier and Warp Scrambler. She is backed up by two allies in Burst-class Support Frigates, which can use Remote Shield Transporters to keep themselves and their leader alive. I advise you to do everything in your power to eliminate the Bursts early in the fight.  
A word of warning: these soldiers of fortune are extremely dangerous and have proven very capable of destroying capsuleer ships. If you choose to decline this mission or if you fail to complete it, you will not lose any standings.
Payout:  5M bounties, 2.17M isk base completion, 2.32M isk time bonus, just over 10k LP.

Read on for the fit and the battle report....


Saturday, October 4, 2014

Anomic Agent #5 - Tie Broken

*** FITS VERIFIED PROTEUS JANUARY 2015 ***

Another Anomic Agent mission complete.  Mr. Gurista died on first attempt this time, making the overall score 3 success and 2 punts.

The Daredevil survived his first trial, so now I'll name it.  Lately it's been bad luck to name a ship before its first combat.




Blog Banter #59: Force Projection and Terrain

Blog Banter #59:
Probably been done before... What about local force projection (as opposed to the longer distance force projection that is often talked about)? I think of 'terrain' in EVE to be how systems are mapped together by gates. Strong tactics which exploit terrain have historically been extremely important in deciding battle outcomes. How does this apply in EVE in the presence of cynos?

I'm going to dive straight sideways and sidestep the dev blog about force projection, and the associated threadnaught.  I'm framing my response at a potential future state, far down the road, and talk about a general direction I'd like EVE to take.


Tiebreaker

As I type, I'm headed back to Amarr to fit out another Daredevil.

So far, the Burner score is 2 successful, 2 punts, and 1 on deck.

At last report, I was messing around with the Gurista mission.  I found some successful tank fits, but in the end caved to conformity and bought a Daredevil for some blaster fighting.  This resulted in 2 attempts - first entry resulted in a successful abort, I screwed up my approach and decided to abort while I still had plenty of cap.  The second entry with the Daredevil resulted in me getting Mr. Gurista to ~40% shields before I mysteriously burned out my mwd and web.  (I swear the overheat rack icon was OFF, but the client decided otherwise).  I still might have gotten out, but I retreated in a bad direction and didn't get off grid before I ran out of Navy Cap Boosters.

It was one of those slow deaths you could smell coming, can't help but just sit at the keyboard and ride it out.

The fit was good, tank was strong, but somehow I still got my teeth kicked in.

After that, I just needed to shoot stuff.  So I punted the Gurista and pulled Dread Pirate Scarlet.  Lots of bounties, some decent loot, and the bonus implant for killing Scarlet a pocket early.  It was nice to see green numbers in my transaction history for a change.

At this point, I realized I'm basically earning enough from lvl4s to offset my ship losses (total of 4 frigates consumed by fiery death, for something like 250M, plus another 250M or so that's sitting in my hangers waiting for future use).

I don't like treading water, but I feel like I ought to pursue the challenges I've been whining about.

The burner offers are coming faster for me. This time, after 3 successful lvl4s, Mr. Gurista (single burner) is giving me a chance at redemption.  This will be the tiebreaker.  I'm using the same fit as before, and will be more vigilant on the overheat.


Perspectives

It's been an interesting few weeks here. First, I've been having PC problems the past several weeks.  I have new laptop inbound fr...