Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Chapter One Beta

Of Slepnirs and Ibises

ISK Balance: 149,238,018.32

My Stabber and I entered docking ring whatever of generic Amarr station in Hophib, and after background checks on the locals decided to take a look around. Hophib is a 0.1 system, the last dot of low security before the vast coldness of Fountain. I expected to find some Bobbits, but found no overt followers of the great BoB. The stations have some surprisingly good agents (I found three level four, quality 20 agents in just one of the four stations), but more surprising still was the apparent lack of anyone taking advantage of said agents. Still hoping for a good piracy target, I put Apocrypha into a tight orbit of the jump gate that led straight into the heart of Fountain.

After mistaking a starter corpmember's Ares for a Gallente shuttle - you know, with that ugly salmon pink and all - and making it back to the portal back to low security, I discovered what the interceptor had been scouting for. Local jumped by four and I spotted a Myrmidon and something with an ungodly lock speed before I jumped through to the relative safety of the sentry guns. The aggressors' buddy was sitting on the other side with a Slepnir, and I didn't wait around to see if he could tank the sentries. I had been outmatched again, but I was glad I didn't take the Ares bait and made it back to Hophib with all my duct tape accounted for.

Feeling weary of my failures to get ahead in the game of piracy, I headed back to a station to rethink things. Incongruously, there were two Ibises sitting, unpiloted, in the undocking port of the Amarr station.

This is the part where I mention how much I love rookie ships, especially Ibises. With the exception of the Imparior, they're all dreadfully ugly, and of course they rock like a wet tuna sandwich in combat. But they're free, and "free" has already become my new linguistic holy grail as a vagabond. Also, I think they're quaint and just a little bit adorable in their own nostaligic way, and I have often wished everybody felt this way so I could sell them to people at a million ISK each.

I have the most sympathy for the Ibis, since it deserves a much less hardcore name. It needs a name which is not linked to the Egyptian god of judging the dead and many a thing intellectual and superstitious and cunning. That's just too plain cool for this wimpy little ship. So I feel sympathy more for the misplacement of the name than anything else.

So of course I took the Ibises. But then I needed somewhere to put them. I picked a planet and warped to it, making a safespot halfway there. Strangely enough, an empty Amarr shuttle was sitting at the planet. Free ships were just falling into my lap! After delivering the two Ibises to the safespot, I took the shuttle there, too.

But then I needed more Ibises. I flew back and forth between the station and the safespot, depositing Ibis after Ibis, creating my own poor man's ghost fleet. It's a strange pet project, I know, but it's fun and it's free. Maybe others will come and deposit their own Ibises in my Hophib graveyard. Perhaps it shall become a landmark. Perhaps one day we shall all return to our ghost fleet and take up our Civilian Gatling Railguns and our Civilian Miners and we shall wash in a sea of rookie fire over the galaxy.

Or someone will come along and smartbomb them all and forget to fraps it and I will be very sad.

In any case, during this escapade I began talking in the corp channel with the other outcasts and inexperienced players, and I was sympathetic towards a certain LocutusOBorg, who was breaking that golden rule of flying what he couldn't afford to lose; an uninsured Drake. While I have often been a proponent of learning things the hard way, I know the crushed spirit such a loss can breed in the formative weeks of EVE playerhood.

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