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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Wednesday, May 21, 2014

What's not in your hangar, 2014

I thought it would be interesting to look at all the ships that I stopped flying or stocking in the past year, and why.

Again, you're going to hear "warp speed changes" a lot when I describe why I got rid of this or that ship and again, I view those changes as extraordinarily positive for the most part! But since Rote Kapelle was until fairly recently mostly a roaming alliance, these changes had profound effects on the culture of roaming and rendered some ships unsuited to the changes.

There are three categories below:
  1. "Retired", meaning I got the ship blown up or gave it/sold it to someone else who got it blown up. Once that was done, I didn't buy a replacement.
  2. "Forcibly retired", meaning that I repackaged it, sent it to Jita via jump freighter, and sold it.
  3. "All but retired", meaning that this ship is technically sitting in my hangar but never gets used for anything. If I still haven't flown it in the next few months, it will be forcibly retired.

Retired this year:

Hawk (x2), "Dance for Me". Name source: True Lies. I refitted these to shield buffer fit then more or less deliberately lost them both in a RvB Ganked roam last year.

Cheetah (x1), "Like the Chameleon". Name source: Predator. I sold this one to an alliance-mate. I prefer the Buzzard mostly for its large number of mid slots, but also partially because the Buzzard is the one T2 frigate that every single one of my mains and alts can fly. So the Buzzard got a lot of "courier" work moving clones around the map. That job will probably move to the Crow or Raptor.

Algos (x1), "Fly or Die". Name source: Commando.
Corax (x1), "I'll Kill You Last". Name source: Commando. I gave both of these to one of my alts and lost them both spectacularly in low-sec. I haven't seen the need to get Ripard any new ones.

Rifter (x2), "Fly in the Ointment". Name source: Die Hard.
Tormentor (x2), "Monkey in the Wrench". Name source: Die Hard. I've lost most or all of these in various small frigate fights. Of the two, I've been more interested in restocking Tormentors but generally haven't done it because there hasn't been much call for them any more. It got to the point where I was mostly using them in specific fights against Brave Newbies.

Ares (x2), "Sweep the Leg". Name source: The Karate Kid. Gave both of these away to Rote Kapelle scouts.

Forcibly retired this year:

Harpy (x1), "I Don't Score Much". Name source: True Lies. This one lived up to its name. When I want to fly a shield AF, I fly an Enyo or Ishkur. This one just isn't any fun to fly.

Wolf (x1), "I Married Rambo". Name source: True Lies. I did enjoy this ship (it was arty fit) but it was another shield fit where I'd rather use the Enyo or Ishkur. Even when I did use it, it was mostly in a safe clump of other ships from where I blapped tackle with it. It was too specialized to keep or to suicide.

Armageddon (x2), "Fire ship". Name source: Horatio Hornblower.
Maelstrom (x1), "Flame Units Only". Name source: Aliens.
Raven (x1), unnamed.
Scorpion (x1), "Nobody Likes You". Name source: The Last Boy Scout.
Tempest (x2), "For Close Encounters". Name source: Aliens.
Typhoon Fleet Issue (x1), "Game Over, Man". Name source: Aliens. All of my battleships died of the same disease: "Don't Want To Roam In A Battleship" disease. I just didn't feel any need to carrier them out to Providence and so I packaged them and sent them to Jita instead. The Raven is most ironic: I bought it specifically to play with RHML fits. By the time I could manufacture my own RHMLs, the ship's day had already passed. Packaging up the Tempests hurt the most. That used to be my favorite battle cruiser. ;-) I almost kept one Tempest or one Geddon for capital ship neuting duty but I literally can't remember the last time I did that, so I didn't.

Brutix (x1), "Hasta La Vista Baby". Name source: Terminator.
Ferox (x1), "Party Pooper". Name source: Kindergarten Cop.
Gnosis (x2), "Sarah Connor". Name source: Terminator.
Prophecy (x1), "English Accent". Name source: Robin Hood, Men in Tights. I managed to lose a Gnosis right before last year's post. Other than that, these ships died to the same disease as the battleships. I just wasn't flying them and none of them are good enough or fun enough to lose in solo PvP.

Claymore (x1), "Overkill is Underrated". Name source: The A-Team. This was originally my armor Claymore. I made this one available to our AT team last year in case we had a comp that needed a Claymore. It turned out this wasn't the case. I predicted to myself I would fly Command Ships a lot less in the back half of 2013, that turned out to be right, so I sent this one back to Jita rather than Provi. I still have one Claymore in a shield fit.

Osprey (x1), "Ugly Motherfucker". Name source: Predator. The Scythe is better and I didn't see a need to inflict this on an FC.

Phobos (x2), "Smell Them Coming". Name source: Commando. These were too specialized to lose and I no longer believed my own narrative on the extra mid slot making this a worthwhile competitor to the Devoter.

All but retired:

Arbitrator (x1), "Fear My Spears". Name source: 300. I really really like the Arbitrator -- it's one of my top three favorite cruisers. But finding a fleet that it fits into is a stone bitch.

Keres (x1), "I'm a Special Boy". Name source: American Pie.
Kitsune (x1), "Hush! Hush!". Name source: Broken Arrow.
Sentinel (x1), "Did You Miss Me?"  Name Source: The Mask. These ships are soooo specialized right now and I can't remember the last time I had an FC call for them, other than the Keres. I doubt I'll ever sell them; they'll just perpetually wait in my hangar for a call that may never come.

Daredevil (x1), "Don't Like Rednecks". Name source: Commando. I need to relook at this one in light of the rebalance.

Venture (x2), "Salvage Corvette". Name source: Homeworld (the game). The idea of a tackle Venture tickled me, but I haven't used it. Likewise, I've got another fit for 1v1 frigate combat but I haven't used that one, either.

Deimos (x1), "Pikal Envy". Name source: Babylon 5. I keep trying to get this ship killed, so far without success. When it finally dies I won't be replacing it. I'm pretty sure it's rail fit at the moment.

Vagabond (x1), "The Quarterback is Toast". Name source: Die Hard. FFS, I have no idea what to do with this ship any more. Not even counting T3s, there are five ships that are better in the exact same role -- Cynabal, Thorax, Stratios, Ishtar, Cerberus -- and now CCP is adding a sixth (Orthrus)! FFS! But there was a stretch when this was my go-to absolute favorite ship and I can't bring myself to get rid of it. If I can ever bring myself to undock in the thing again and it dies, I definitely will not replace it, though.

Broadsword (x1), "The Revenge Business". Name source: The Princess Bride. I bought this in 2012 because Rote started occasionally needing shield interdictors. Then we stopped needing them and I still haven't flown this.

Stiletto (x1), "For Defense Only". Name source: The Karate Kid. Every once in a while, it gets used as a clone courier.

Taranis (x1), "Squish Like Grape". Name source: The Karate Kid. The only mission of Ranises these days is as suicide tackle boats for Crow or Malediction fleets. I'll likely use this one in that role and that will be that.

Eris (x1), "My Mom Will Shoot". Name source: bad Sly Stallone movie. Once upon a time, I used the Eris as a "home defense" quick response dictor. I'd cheerfully throw it into a small frigate blob and see how many I could kill before I died. If I killed more frigs than the cost of the dictor, I won. That stopped being viable in Syndicate but just might be viable in Provi. So this ship might get a reprieve from this list.

Huginn (x1), "Lowly Lowly Cook". Name source: Under Siege. Right after the Pilgrim, this is the Recon that needs the most help, IMO. I'll hold on to it until after the rebalance then decide what to do.

Rook (x1), "Gonna Get Me An Ear". Name source: Firefly. Gods, I love this ship. It's sooo terrific for 5-man micro-gangs. But those are all but dead in null and so now it's like the Huginn, waiting for the rebalance and hopefully an interesting new role.

Tengu (x2), "I Got Lucky". Name source: Mr and Mrs Smith. These are tricky. I've been hanging on to them with the thought of attaching them to some PvP meta but I haven't been involved with any groups that have one of those. I'm reluctant to sell them because they're both partially or fully T2-rigged. But I'm not doing anything with them right now.

So that's 47 ships retired or all but retired. The bulk of this happened because of the move to Provi. It's three mid-points from TXW to the station we moved to. That's a lot of carrier fuel. So when it came time to choose the ships I was going to move to Provi, I had to be really selective. Almost no battleships made the cut. Less than half of my BCs made the cut. And then I started trimming the smaller ships, and I was pretty freakin' brutal.

And while 17 ships in this post did actually get staged to Provi, I'm honest enough with myself that most of them made the trip for sentimental or anticipatory reasons rather than logical ones. As a result, while a few of the ships there might escape back into the "retained" list, it probably won't be more than two or three.

This will be the first year where Ripard probably won't be adding new ships to the list because of new skills. Last year, a lot of new drone skills prompted me to stock drone boats. This year, new battleship-class skills got me experimenting with the big boys for a year. But there should be none of that in the coming 12 months. The only new ship-related skill announced is Expedition Frigates, which is seems clear will be one (and perhaps more) mining ships.

You're not gonna see a lot of those on this list, except as irony. ;-)

Still, one never knows what's on the minds of CCP Fozzie, CCP Rise, or CCP Ytterbium. So let's see what the next year brings!


  1. "5-man micro-gangs"

    So, 5-man isn't a "gang", nor even a "mini-gang". "Micro" means one millionth, so I hate to think of what your definition of a "gang" must be.

    No wonder that solo and small gang PVP died on CSM8's watch. You guys probably never considered anything smaller than 50-man fleets to be a "gang".

    1. woop woop, its the nitpick police.

    2. 5-man is indeed micro. Small is 25-40. Medium is 50-200.

      EVE is changing and CSM8 didn't have anything to do with it. It changed before we got to Iceland. I just didn't recognize it until then.

    3. Small is not 25-40. It's just not, no matter how hard you try to justify Rote moving to Provi by saying smaller gangs no longer exist. We get 5-15 man fights in Syndicate literally time we go out. If you're in a 40 man gang, individual pilot skill has stopped being a deciding factor and it's no longer small gang.

      BTW, no Nomen on any list? They're pretty fantastic, although I suppose they mostly fit into the gang size in question above.


    4. I didn't change null-sec. It's changing all on its own without any help from me. I congratulate you on selling the last few buggy whips in EVE, though!

      I do agree that in a 40-man gang individual pilot skill is much less of a factor than in a 15-man gang. And yes, I'm quite sad about it too.

      I had a Nomen for a while that I used as an anti-tackle screen ship. It worked pretty well for that! But also pretty freakin' specialized.

  2. for those ships still sitting in the hangar over in Syndicate, it might be fun to try to fly them from Syndicate over to Providence and see which ones make it. If they get bbq'd - whelp, it's not like you were planning on using them anyways!


    1. I have no ships left in Syndicate other than my spare carriers. Everything not in Provi is in low-sec staging systems.

  3. Battleships are great for solo roaming, and attract a lot of battles. Take one out and give it a try.

    1. In USTZ, flying a battleship is an invitation for a 40-man hot-drop. No thanks.

    2. "... flying a battleship is an invitation for a 40-man hot-drop."

      That's the whole idea. As a fan of movie quotes, you should remember this:

      Alex Rogan: Hold it! There's no fleet? No Starfighters, no plan? One ship, you, me, and that's it?

      Grig: Exactly! Xur thinks you're still on Earth. Classic military strategy, surprise attack.

      Alex Rogan: It'll be a slaughter!

      Grig: That's the spirit!

      Alex Rogan: No, *my* slaughter! One ship against the whole Armada?

      Grig: Yes, one Gunstar against the Armada. I've always wanted to fight a desperate battle against incredible odds.

    3. I might not mind if I got a kill or two but that nearly always is not the case.

    4. "I might not mind if I got a kill or two but that nearly always is not the case."

      Probably because you are using a fleet or gang fit designed to kill other BS. You'll never be able to kill even a single BS in a 40-man hot drop - you won't have the time. But, you can fit your BS to kill a lot of smaller stuff, because they won't expect it. And, if you fully insure your BS and use lower cost metas, there is a fair chance that you'll still win, ISK-wise.

      Anyways, it can be a lot of fun, esp. since you learn to think way out of the box.

  4. "The only new ship-related skill announced is..."

    Please, no more new skills. It is hard enough for us newer players to catch up as is - adding more skills just encourages newer players to quit in frustration, esp. when you run out of remaps.

    1. The very argument I made to CCP Fozzie every time a new skill appeared (it always seemed to be him telling the CSM about new skills). It got to the point where he would say "I know Jester isn't going to like this, but we're introducing a new skill that..."

      He didn't even mention the Expedition Frigates skill to me. He didn't have to. He could have predicted very accurately what I would say about it. ;-)

  5. I wanna see Ripard flying PvP battle-miners.

    1. Ripard has Industry I and those 250 SP are the only SP he has under Production. I keep thinking about training it to V so he can fly DSTs and keep not doing it.

  6. A fair few of your ships in this list are good for having solo roaming fun. Take the Vaga for example - all of those ships you said were "better" are only "better" in certain fleets. I'd take the Vaga over all those you mentioned when roaming solo.

    Why not try something different (for you afaict) and go solo roaming in your "all but retired" ships rather than just waiting for the chance to whelp them in a fleet fight?

    1. I tend not to bother with solo roaming on Ripard because when I jump into systems, the most common response is quite literally "Hi Ripard! Love the blog! But nothing for you to kill here, go away." ;-)

  7. I never understood why you prefer the Rapier over the Huginn.
    The Huginn is better in every aspect with the exception that it has no cloak.
    Its faster, it has more EHP and better Resits. Its survivability is better in an actual fight where it takes some beating.
    The cloak on the rapier wont help you at all in a fight if the enemy is competent, because they will just keep you locked (you are an obvious primary anyways).

    And for armor stuff, the Loki beats the Rapier. (Yes, the Loki doesnt have the same webrange, but at least it has a tank)

    And every time you say that small-gang pvp means 25-40 people, you loose a bit more of your already thin credibility as "small-gang-pvper"...
    Only because 0.0 blob-fleets see it that way, doesnt mean it actualy is that way.


  8. Solo players be like: small gang 2-4. Bleb 5+

  9. solo - 1
    small gang 2-5
    gang 5-10
    large gang 10-20
    small fleet 20+

    I realize this is from someone who doesn't play in nullsec, but the above is pure lexicon from low sec roams and hisec war experience.


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