August 23, 2015

Shake it Off, Shake it Off!

I've begun the slow process of shaking it off. The rust that is. I was moving a couple of ships around in-system and noticed a small fleet of mainly Cerbs and Basilisks outside one of the stations. I reported it, created a fleet, and we rounded a few people up. The plan was pretty simple: I'd undock in a Sacrilege, get them to aggress and then let the cavalry come to the rescue. I did a quick double check before undocking to make sure my broadcasts were set up, and away we went.

It all went pretty well at first. I undocked, was immediately pointed and webbed, and began burning ever so slowly towards the enemy fleet which was located about 70km behind the undock. The rest of the fleet undocks, I broadcast for armor, and the logistics easily outpace the damage.

Our tackle burns ahead and starts to get points on a Basilisk. By this time the enemy fleet is disengaging me and trying to fend off everyone else since I was the only one pinned down initially. Both our fleets are a little spread out, but everyone is holding super well on our side, so the logistics continue moving as fast as they can towards us while we get tackle on a Basilisk, Cerberus, and Gila. Our Heretic lands three great bubbles but is caught when he goes in for the fourth.

By this point, most of the DPS is caught up with me. I'm held down pretty heavily since I somehow got back in front. I've got tackle on the primary Cerberus and a Gila which is right next to me. I'm holding fine, the rest of the fleet is in Zealots and Guardians. The fleet is told to use me as a DPS anchor. But, unfortuntely there lies the first problem. I recognized it, but put it out of mind immediately. In hindsight, I shouldn't have; I should have spoken up.

You see, I'm in a Sacrilege, I'm webbed. I'm already slow as molasses, but I'm point blank on the primary, that Cerberus. I'm neuting him, scramming him, and putting my missiles on him. It's working great. For me. Our Zealots were having trouble hitting him because I was so close to him.

I didn't really consider this at the time for two reasons:

  1. I'm not used to using DPS anchors. In Noir. we've avoided using DPS anchors in most cases, preferring to let each pilot handle themselves. I like this style myself. Everyone has to remain focused and can correct for mistakes like the one we have now. Except during POS bashes. Then I love DPS anchors.
  2. I've been out of the PvP game for quite some time. Even when I was playing more heavily months and months ago, most of my play time was administerial. I didn't want to rock the boat.
Like I said, I should have spoken up. I also could have tried to correct the issue manually, flying as a Zealot to get the rest of the fleet better transversal, but I don't think that would have been the best solution.

Anyway, things are still going ok at this point. No one is dying and the Cerberus is in low structure but is catching some shield reps. We should have him shortly. Suddenly, all the DPS is focused on to me. No problem, I broadcast for more reps as soon as my shields start to chunk. Slight amor damage. Nothing. I broadcast a couple more times. Armor creeps lower. I announce it over comms, "Psianh needs armor." The response: broadcast for them. I am! I say. 

I die.

I warp back to the station where my Zealot is in to come back in the fight, but a Megathron is on the undock and he scrams and webs me before I can enter warp. I'm pretty sure his plan was the same as mine, but Alek was keeping him from warping on an alt account in an Ares (I think it was). We're stuck there together and I can only listen to comms from here on out.

We slowly start to lose people, Zealots primarily, while taking down the Cerberus I mentioned earlier and the Gila I had tackled at the same time. The rest of their fleet, presumedly, was too far away for anyone to catch by the time those two were dropped. People start to reconsolidate, recognizing that the enemy fleet is going to be able to kite us from here on out.

During that time, I check my broadcast settings. What the heck happened? I know I checked them before I undocked, but clearly no one saw me ask for armor. I made sure I was broadcasting to the entire fleet. Yup, I was. Open up the shortcuts and I can only shake my head at myself.

My broadcast settings were set, just not to what I remembered. I usually use Shift+A for armor, Shift+S for shields, and Shift+C for capacitor. This time my settings were Shift+Ctrl+A, ,Shift+Ctrl+S, and Shift+Ctrl+C. Damnit.

I don't know if my death had much to do with the overall events. I feel like we still would have lost some Zealots and come out behind, especially one we found out after the fleet was over that at least 4 of our Zealots were using Meta 4 guns and at least one person only had Gleam, the short range ammunition available. Part of that is because we had literally just unpacked our stuff from the move 5 to 10 minutes ago. Some people unpacked and undocked immediately after one another which isn't the best way to make sure you're prepared.

Overall it was a pretty poor showing, but I actually flew pretty well, all things considered. If I only had double checked my settings I probably would have lived at the very least. It was a lot of fun though. I absolutely love flying armor, especially the Sacrilege. I've already got another one on the way via courier. Next time I'll make sure to hit the right hotkey.