Entry: eight hundred twenty-one.
It's been pretty slow for a while. The alliance is mostly settled in the new home now, the Detorid region. Much of the region is barren in terms of population, and the main activity hubs are a bit spread out among the wasteland of systems. While the alliance at large has been taking time to rat up ISK, I've been trying to develop my combat skills, although only in small ships.
I haven't had any victories yet, but considering that I am trying to improve, success wouldn't teach much.
I took a Wolf out to Molden Heath a few days ago. I'm not sure whether I had trouble finding anything my Wolf could fight due to lack of knowledge of the area, bad timezone coverage, incompetence, impatience, or some combination, but I quickly grew bored of the area and moved back to null for combat. I know a few hotspots, and it's easier and faster to find targets near those than roam what seemed to be a pipe from Metropolis to Molden to Ammatar Space.
Shortly after leaving Molden, I encountered a Talos that jumped into me somewhere in Providence. I didn't think people were baiting with the newly developed battlecruisers yet, but my bloodthirst and lack of recent experience in combat for the last two weeks left me wide open for the rest of the Red Overlord fleet to break my Wolf into little pieces seconds before I could jump out. Well, maybe more than seconds, maybe ten to twenty. Fight time messes with the sense of it.
Today I went up against a Malediction in a shield Rifter. I wasn't honestly expecting a solo Malediction, but there it was. It had the repper, the web and scram, and even though I brought him down to half structure, and only because I was manually flying my ass off to pull a little range so that he couldn't be a hundred percent under my guns, he still got me. My undoing in that fight, in my opinion, was my ammunition. At the time, I'd only had Republic Fleet EMP, and as great as that is, it's also the highest resist on a Malediction. It's much more likely I would have won had I been carrying Faction Phased, or even Hail.
After losing that Malediction, I felt inspired to roam in a Malediction of my own. I did, eventually, come across a Rifter in Severance space. He was sitting off gate amidst a bunch of wrecks, it'd been a few hours, and I wanted a fight. What I got was a merciless beatdown. That could have been a great fight, just me and the Rifter, but an entire fleet decided to jump in and kill me.
That's fine. That happens. The Rifter pilot and I are the ones that lost out, not anyone else. He lost a good time, I lost that and a ship. I wonder if he'll think about that in the future? Then again, knowing firsthand how timid many null-sec residents are about combat without a fleet, it's a near impossibility.
As for me, I learned a few lessons worth taking home related to solo combat, and while the corp killboards are going to reflect poorly on my solo activity for a while, I'm becoming a better pilot because of it, and I don't think anyone will mind too much, as long I don't make the same mistakes repeatedly.
I learned that a Shield rifter is probably not the best choice for engaging a Malediction, but if I do, I should bring Phased Plasma with my EMP. Finding the Phased may be an issue, but it's worth at least trying to solve.
I learned that the new battlecruisers are fantastic bait, and that if I see one jump into me, I had better make sure he's off his in gate before I engage, or his gang will come in and kill me. Even better would be to warp away to a planet or another stargate, and see if he pursues solo, or a gang soon jumps in after him.
I learned that in null-sec, people don't sit fifteen kilometers off a gate, even if it does look like they might be salvaging. Must assume level five skills, as well as level five baiting techniques. I must make my potential target prove to me that he's as bad or as dumb and as alone as I hope he might be before I open fire.
Should I have known before? Probably, but taking note of these things while in a fleet is much harder, and less obvious as well since it's an entirely different scenario. But I know now. Every loss I take now is a lesson learned that will result in fewer losses in the future.
Sorry Militaris, I'll try not to hurt the killboards too much, but the investment is worth it, I promise!
Computer: terminate recording.