Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Solo Site Running

If you're a wormhole denizen or wormhole dweller wannabe, I'm positive that you've heard of the Drake and it's ability to easily run sites solo. For a while now, I've wanted to learn how to make a good fit to run sites solo so I could make some ISK during quiet times.

Now, I used to be a Caldari pilot when I first started playing and I used to enjoy using Missiles. Drakes are well known for running sites solo because they have a massive tank and they also have the ability to kite the Sleepers and shoot them with missiles from long range. However, Caldari ships (shield-based) are not very useful in wormholes because they need to use their mid-slots to shield tank. Mid-slots are also used for PvP mods, such as warp disruptors and scramblers, so shield tanked fleets are a rare sight in wormholes. That is, unless you're in a Pulsar, which gives massive bonuses to shield capacity. Indeed, if you're fighting inside someone's home and it's a Pulsar and they're shield tanked, you better hope you have shields also or it isn't likely that you'll win.

Anyway, our doctrine in the Uni is armor tanked ships. We fit armor, we fit points and webs, and all is good. That means that I learned quickly that I needed to switch from Caldari to something else, and I ended up picking Gallente at the recommendation of several people. So, long before I ever joined the Wormhole Campus, I switched to Gallente and started training my drone skills. I like drones because they remind me of missiles. They go out there and do their thing at range, and I can sit back and reap the rewards. I've invested heavily into my drone skills now so that my drones can hit decently hard.

So, in order to do solo site running, I needed to find a ship that was capable of doing it that I could fly. Turns out, I ended up fitting a self-repping Myrmidon with T2 reppers for it. A friend of mine was planning on running sites in his Ishtar in a C2 connection we had, so I went with him. It was a pretty neat experience. The biggest problem was certain sentries being far away on the initial warp in, so I had trouble getting in range to command my drones to take them out. I think I also lost a Hobgoblin on the very first wave. Either that, or I only brought 4 along with me for some unknown reason.

Otherwise, things went well. I made sure to avoid the triggers by using EVE Survival, and I was able to handle the incoming damage using one repper the majority of the time. The only time I had to switch to two reppers was when I was tanking the battleship. That thing was hitting me pretty hard, but I also wasn't moving. Maybe I should try getting my transversal up next time.

Also, while d-scanning, we spotted a Manticore briefly. Hm, wonder what that's doing? Now, this had been a pretty busy system. We had seen other ships popping up on d-scan also, like a Proteus and others. Near the end of our sites, I saw the Manticore decloak next to me and send off a volley of torpedos. I don't know what he aimed for, because it didn't hit myself or my friend. Maybe he was trying to help kill the battleship that was still on grid. I started locking him up to take him out with my drones and he warped off and cloaked. Erring on the side of caution, we finished what we were doing and came back with a salvager. I brought a Tristan for defense in case he showed up again. He didn't, and all was well.

My next steps are going to be to skill into sentry drones to be able to hit things further out and for more damage. Since T2 sentries are a long train, I'm going to end up using the faction versions that can be used with the same skills as required for the T1 variants. The faction versions have many of the benefits of the T2 versions but without the heavy skill requirement. However, they also don't benefit from the increased damage as you increase your sentry drone skills. However, in the mean time, it's a good option. I'm less than a day from being able to use the faction sentries, and I'll be heading back out to try them soon.

One last thing I need to remember to do is to get my Salvaging skill to 4 so that I can salvage the Sleeper battleships. I don't think battleships spawn in C1s but they do in C2s, so if I want a chance at getting more loot from them, I'll need to be sure to train up my skill by one.

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