Welcome to Jester's Trek.
I'm your host, Jester. I've been an EVE Online player for about six years. One of my four mains is Ripard Teg, pictured at left. Sadly, I've succumbed to "bittervet" disease, but I'm wandering the New Eden landscape (and from time to time, the MMO landscape) in search of a cure.
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Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Ganking you while blue

One of Pandemic Legion's favorite tactics in Pure Blind is to insert awoxers -- short-term spies -- into the corps that live here.  These spies aren't looking for intel.  They're looking for ratters.  Often within hours of being accepted into a Pure Blind region corp, they're sitting in a Hound or other stealth bomber fitted with a point and a cyno generator.  If they can pick up a Core Probe Launcher easily, they'll do that, too.

More often, though, the awoxer will just take advantage of the various home defense fleets that most of the Pure Blind region corps use to defend their space.  These fleets are generally open to everyone in the alliance.  So the awoxer will just join the fleet, and warp from fleet member to fleet member, usually cloaked, until they find something expensive ratting solo -- a Tengu or a carrier, say.

They go in, point the target, light the cyno... and whatever's on the other end of the cyno comes through and smites the ratter.  The details at this point vary a little, but supercap blobs are popular, as are cyno-bridged AHAC gangs.  Sometimes, if you get a particularly high skill point awoxer, he'll light a covert cyno and bring in a dozen bombers and recons instead.  Anyway, as a result, awoxers are usually the most threat to the corps that accept them as members.

Still, sometimes an awoxer will travel further afield.  He'll try to get into the defense fleets of blue corps or alliances, or just enter the systems owned by these corps and alliances.  Since he shows up as an ally, he doesn't get shot.  If he can get into the local home defense fleet, great.  Otherwise, he tries his luck the hard way, with core probes or the on-board ship scanner.

The results can be expensive -- no, that isn't me, it's an alliance-mate -- but unfortunately, there's not a lot you can do about it.  What are you supposed to do when a blue warps to you?  Unfortunately, you can't shoot him.  Not until after he's already got you locked down, anyway.

Once the awoxer gets his kill, standard practice is for our alliance diplomat to go back to the corp that recruited the awoxer and demand reimbursement for the loss.  Failing to pay up risks getting that corp or alliance kicked out of Pure Blind, so the corp in question always pays.  Hopefully, eventually, this causes the corp to be more careful about who they recruit.

The awoxer's goal is a LOL-kill, and such a Tengu certainly qualifies.  But their larger goal is to sow mistrust and discord among the target alliances.  Soon, the more paranoid of your pilots refuse to undock when there's a blue in system...  It's kind of a dick move, but it's very effective.


  1. The key here is compartmentalization and recruitment standards. However, these are endemic problems to any large inter-regional coalition, thus very difficult to resolve without significantly increasing organizational complexity.

    Thus, it becomes a war of attrition. The enemy continues to employ the tactic for which the only answer are costly modifications corporate policies. For the victim, it's a loose-loose situation.

    The counter to this of course is a proactive, offensive campaign to put the enemy on the defensive, force them to allocate their resources to the home front, and drain their income. The rules of the game are changed when that happens, and the victim retakes the initiative. Whether or not such a campaign is successful is a matter of execution, organization, tactics, and strategy.

  2. Yep, all accurate, but difficult to implement against PL, who don't keep a fixed infrastructure (except for one POS for their supercaps to warp to).

    This lack of a fixed supply line and infrastructure is probably PL's biggest advantage, and the biggest reason not to take space if they're offered it by Goons or Test.


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