Driving, fishing and shooting in ArcheAge

A couple of weeks ago our Gamigo overlords decided to start giving out some gifts in ArcheAge Unchained on a regular basis. I don’t know if that’s a sign of reclining MAU-numbers or something, but I’ll take it regardless.

Things started off with a different kind of labor potion, claimable daily, and a 15-day trial version of the Redwood Roadster, a pretty expensive to build steampunk-style car, claimable once per account.

A Ferrari it ain’t, but it sure beats riding an oversized owl…

The car’s nifty, I’ll give it that. It definitely comes in handy when you have only a single trade pack to carry because it’s a hell of a lot faster than the poor donkey. It can even carry two more in the trunk to boot. I don’t think I’ll go for building one now that the trial version has expired though, it’s just too expensive for what it offers.

The second round of gifts has daily loot drop rate potions and a 15-day Predator Longliner in store for us, a really great fishing boat. You can still get it until the 27th.

I didn’t want to let this opportunity go unused, so I suggested to gather the family, claim the ships and try ourselves at high-sea fishing.

“A trip by sea, what fun it can be”, as a German song once said

Unfortunately things didn’t start off too well. We’d just delivered a bunch of cargo packs to Austera and I was like, well, let’s set sail right here and look for a fishing spot. Poor choice, that.

We’d just stored the first few fish in the tank when a red galleon came into sight, bearing right at us blazingly fast. There was just enough time to swap out my fishing rod for real weapons, then the galleon crashed into our boat with full force, hurtling us off its deck. We took quite a lot of damage from the collision too and were scattered all over the place, so our chances of fighting those pirates off were next to zero, even if they hadn’t outnumbered and outgeared us. We managed to take one of them down with us, but soon we were all standing at the nearest respawn, our fish lost and my boat heavily damaged. I will say this though, despite us basically getting ganked it was still a rather cool experience. Seeing that galleon coming at us like that was pretty epic.

Anyway, we don’t give up that easily, so we did what we should have done from the start: we ported home and set sail due south-west, pretty much as far away from Haranya as possible. This was when the fun – and profit – began.

Cast yer rods, landlubbers, those fishies ain’t gonna catch themselves

We found a far-off fishing spot, used the chum salmon Lakisa’d made and went to work. Sometimes a fish would bug out and just swim away, but the four of us still managed to fill up the ship’s fish tank pretty quickly, as there’s only room for five small or medium sized fish in there.

Additionally the boat sports two crane hooks for gargantuan specimen

We made the trip to the nearest turn-in point and sold the fish for a nice sum of gold, then made our way back to the still active spot.

Once it was expired we moved on to the next, and so on. We had some big laughs too, for example when we caught our first gargantuan pufferfish…

How I was able to climb a ladder with THAT on my back I have no idea

After our second trip with no other player in sight we got bolder. Once the first boat was full we spawned a second and filled that up as well before returning and selling our haul.

On our way back once more, both boats fully loaded

The gold kept piling up and we were giggling every time a haul yielded even more than the previous ones. We were still at it when the sun set.


In the end we’d earned so much that the initial setback was paid for many, many times over and was all but forgotten.

We did a second session a couple of days later as a group of three, as Tristron wasn’t available, which was just as lucrative. This time around a handful of other fishermen were also out and about, all fellow Nuians, which made the spots a little more crowded, but also a lot safer.

We’ll most definitely do a couple more runs before the boats expire, and there have already been talks about if/when we’re going to build our own, permanent ones. I for one am all for it.

I really like these time-limited gifts as they give players an opportunity to try out those expensive toys in a realistic environment and thus help them decide which one, if any, they want to aim for.

Now, what to do with all that gold we earned? For me it wasn’t really a question as I was right in the middle of getting my bow to the next grade. I’d finally succeeded in awakening it to tier four about a week ago – after seven failed attempts, dang it – and was now eager to get it to legendary grade.

No way in hell would I’ve gotten this far with the old system

This gave another substantial boost to my damage output, which, considering that archers in this game are pretty much glass cannons, is by far my most important stat. So, yay!

On the flip side, it looks a bit…umm…girly now…?

Don’t run, this is just a fancy looking bunch of flowers. No, seriously!

I guess I’ll have to go for mythic grade sooner rather than later…

Nothing lasts forever in New Eden

I’ve been pretty busy in EVE Online since I’ve joined Blank Space and thus rejoined NCDot.

Due to PanFam’s running campaign against Dead Coalition there are fleets going up around the clock. As far as I can tell our goal here is to wipe DARKNESS and Co – still referred to as GotG most of the time – off the map for good. Old grudges and all that. Look, politics in EVE are complicated.

Right now they aren’t resisting much, if at all. We’re clearing Tenal off their structures pretty much uncontested, and they reportedly also abandoned Branch already.

One of our Muninn-fleets advancing on enemy space

Fortunately Goon-led Imperium wanted to get in on the action and deployed to the north about two weeks ago, so in addition to shooting defenseless structures real fights are also happening.

One of those occurred when we attacked a Dead Coalition infrastructure hub (iHub) in Deklein the other day. To no one’s surprise we took a few Titan bridges to get there faster. This Ragnarok was waiting inside a good old POS for us.

The swarm of tiny specks approaching the Titan is our fleet

I wouldn’t have thought to ever see a POS again, what with CCP planning to take them out of the game for years now. But there it was, its shields protecting the Titan from any harm. Oh yeah, and also bumping out the Pandemic Legion guys whom to tell the POS-password no one had bothered. Some things just never change.

After that we arrived in Deklein without further incidents, and the “toasting”, i.e. capturing of command nodes in order to destroy the iHub, began. Some of the region’s actual owners did show up, but for the most part defending forces were composed of Imperium pilots. Test Alliance Please Ignore (TEST) were also present, to my surprise fighting on our side. I never seem to be able to track when they’re allied with Goons, and when they’re fighting them. Like I said, EVE politics are complicated.

Anyway, for quite a while the fight was looking good for us and node after node was captured. A TEST Apostle was dropped by a trio of Dreads and killed, but we destroyed all three of them in return, tilting that exchange heavily in our favour too.

A Revelation’s remains floating in space, some fires still burning

We were almost finished with our task when a squadron of Imperium stealth bombers hit our fleet with a very well executed bombing run. Within a couple of seconds we lost over twenty Muninns and half a dozen logis. Ouch! Of course Muninns, like all heavy assault cruisers, are able to heavily boost their resistances for a short while at the touch of a button, but the “Bombs!! Bombs!!”-warning in voicechat came a wee bit late and not everyone, myself unfortunately included, noticed the bombs in time. Welp.

Most of the bombers died in return, nevertheless this one really good move of theirs tilted the battle report nicely in their favour ISK-wise. Still, we destroyed the iHub, so our tactical objective was accomplished. After that our fleet went home the long way. Lakisa and I, having both lost our ships, had the luxury to just self-destruct our pods and wake up in our home station instantly. One should enjoy the little things, right?

On second thought, maybe “enjoy” isn’t quite the right word for it

On the next day yet another first awaited me, as well as the reason for this post’s header. A ping for a structure shoot went out, and since I had some time left before I had to leave for work I figured I’d tag along. The FC called for Feroxes, and once everything was sorted we left with a fleet just shy of 80 people. A small fleet by our standards, but not bad for around 14:00 EVE-time on a weekday.

No one came to defend the structure anyway, which turned out to be a faction Fortizar on its final timer. Which, to be honest, made me a bit sad.

Faction Fortizars came into being when CCP converted all old, player-built outposts into citadels in 2018. The ramifications of that conversion were manifold, but for me personally the biggest consequence by far was that these outposts lost their state of eternal existence due to it.

The old outposts, once built, were immovable and indestructible. They could change hands – voluntarily or by force – but they wouldn’t go away. I was around when those outposts were still a huge undertaking to build and thus pretty rare, a long time ago, and I also contributed to some of them being paid for and deployed in a couple of ways, so I always had somewhat of a soft spot for them.

For the most part the faction Fortizars even look like the outposts they once were, and the four different types wear the names players gave the first outpost of the corresponding type ever built. The administrative fortizar, for example, is called ‘Marginis’ after the first such outpost, constructed by the Interstellar Starbase Syndicate in 2005. I used to live in that outpost for months!

Fortunately this one was a ‘Draccous’ manufacturing Fortizar, which doesn’t have quite as big of a nostalgia factor for me. Still, seeing it blow up hammered home the fact that, indeed, nothing lasts forever in New Eden.

Another remnant of EVE’s past…gone

I really need to pay KDF-GY a visit and see whether the OG ‘Marginis’ Fortizar is still there one of these days…

EVE Online – Out of nullsec, back to nullsec


When Holy Cookie joined Northern Coalition and moved to nullsec in May of last year we all knew what we were getting ourselves into – or so I thought.

Despite having talked about life in a nullsec-alliance extensively before the move, quite a few corp members were less than thrilled about the goings-on within our new organisation rather soon. Some people left the corp, others remained on paper but mostly minded their own business when online.

Just over three months in, corp leadership realized that something had to be done and a voice-meeting was scheduled to talk things over.

Attendance was quite good, most of the remaining active players were there. We discussed our options for like two hours, the conclusion being that the majority wanted to stay in NCDot while also trying to do more stuff as a corp again. Sounded like a plan.

About two weeks later a message from our CEO suddenly informed us that we were going to leave the alliance, with cyno chains for getting our assets out of nullsec going up pretty much immediately. Our clear, almost unanimous vote to the contrary during our meeting wasn’t even mentioned. We also weren’t allowed to talk to anyone outside of our corp about it.

Lakisa and I were flabbergasted. We didn’t want to leave NCDot, and with a bit more time to think things through we’d probably tried to seek refuge in one of the alliance’s other corps right away. With the clock ticking and no means to get our stuff back to empire space on our own – not least thanks to CCPs godawful changes to cynos mere days before – we jumped on the train and moved along back to our old stomping grounds in Black Rise.

The move itself wasn’t great either, what with the short notice and timeframes mainly dictated by gatecamps in certain systems being or not being active, and by the time we’d arrived in Kehjari I was seriously pissed off at our leadership about the whole thing. Corp members tried to help each other out as much as possible, and I believe everyone got all their stuff out eventually, but it was a shitty experience and I absolutely wasn’t in the mood to carry on as if we’d never left lowsec at all.

So I just didn’t log in anymore. I canceled my second account’s sub – “Cyno changes suck, chaos era sucks!” were the reasons I gave CCP in their why-are-you-leaving-us questionnaire in hopes someone actually reads that stuff – and left my main running only to train some more skills for the time being.

Lakisa wasn’t as mad as I was, but she didn’t want to be a lowsec pirate anymore either, so she reached out to one of the nice folks we met at EVE Berlin who happens to be a director in Blank Space, a corp belonging to NCDot. She was accepted to their ranks right away, moved back to nullsec and has had a lot of fun since.

Of course she repeatedly tried to talk me into joining Black Space too, and she had a lot of goods things to say about the corp and its members. So two weeks ago I finally decided that I’d had long enough of a break and applied for membership, which was accepted last week. Yay!

I said my goodbyes to the Cookies, some of whom I’ll definitely miss, and made my way into the cold emptiness of nullsec again. Fortunately one of our old corpmates agreed to buy all assets I had left in Kehjari, including my carrier, saving me the hassle to schlep that stuff along. Thanks mate! A travel-fit interceptor and a padded wallet was all I took with me. After all I knew from experience that I’d be able to buy everything I’d need at our current staging.

The timing couldn’t have been better because just two days later I got onto my very first Keepstar killmail. Unfortunately its owners didn’t show up to defend – they’d already retreated to Branch by that point and are falling back even more as I type this – so it wasn’t much of a fight, more like a test of our TiDi-management skills. Still, a first for me.

I killed this Keepstar! Along with over two thousand other pilots, that is

There’s much going on at the moment, pretty much all the time, and it’s great.

Last Friday held not one, but another two firsts for me. In preparation for an op to hunt ratters and miners in the heart of Goon-space I made my way to Thera – the capital system of wormhole space, if you will – by myself, which marked the first time that I had to scan for wormhole entrances without help. Not that it’s really hard, but it takes a bit getting used to.

Following that the op itself yielded a supercarrier kill, which was my first too.

A Hel, going down from concentrated bomber and Dreadnought fire

Unfortunately two of the Dreads we dropped in order to kill our target quickly enough had to stay on the field and die, but that still was a good tradeoff for us.

After that seemingly every ratter and miner in all of Delve docked up to be safe from us, so there weren’t any more kills to be had. Considering how much ISK and minerals they would have generated, had they been in space instead of hiding during our presence, even that has to count as a win for our side though.

Even more stuff has happened since then, but I’ll save that for another time. Suffice it to say, being back in nullsec rocks and I couldn’t be happier to have taken that step. Also, last week’s events prove that EVE is a game that, even after more than 14 years, can still offer me new experiences. Can’t ask for any more than that, really.