The Scrappy Rifter

By Karak Soon (07 February 2010)

In a day of many surprises, one was the way that one pilot confronted and persevered over one of the most hated operations ever assigned by the Sisters of EVE.  The Sisters in their mysterious ways decided it was time to take the battle to the Angel Cartel Pirate Scum.  Thus all over New Eden the call went out to Capsuleers near and far to take on the fight.  This was the day we learned that The Sisters, though long on thought were sometimes short on practicality.  The three of us, Eleanor Azuranai, Ryko Tolsen and I,  showed up in Gicodel  with thoughts of taking on a mission for this worthy charity.  We did not know that they were handing out one of the toughest and least profitable missions we would ever see.  We all enjoyed a good fight, but this mission was nasty and we all expected a buzz kill.

El showed up with an Abaddon Battleship, I had a Myrmadon Battlecruiser and Ryko, our youngest showed up in a Rifter Frigate.  The Abaddon is a mighty Amarr battle wagon with a long history of taking huge amounts of damage and handing it right back out again with lasers blazing.

El opens up

The Myrmadon is a solid battlecruiser with an ability to take a respectable amount of damage and swarms of drones that take the battle into the enemy’s face and make the point that you’re displeased with them using small caliber quick firing cannons.  The Rifter is a fine little gun boat that can go in and take care of business on the small scale.  For it’s size it hands out lots of damage and is so fast that it avoids being hit by not being around when the enemy rounds arrive.

The Rifter is best used for small ops or in packs against isolated targets.  The Rifter isn’t the ship for a large fleet battle.  Ryko knew this and he stepped up anyway.

The strategy was for El to go in first and start tanking damage.  Ryko and I would then jump in and start taking out frigates  and working our way up to bigger ships as they arrived.  When new groups arrived they had the bad habit of concentrating on Ryko and me instead of the big juicy battleship that El provided.  When Ryko or I got too much attention, we’d align to a far off target, like a station or a moon and warp out so that the enemy would again concentrate on the Abaddon.

Ryko’s Rifter

The Rifter is best used for small ops or in packs against isolated targets.  The Rifter isn’t the ship for a large fleet battle.  Ryko knew this and he stepped up anyway.

The strategy was for El to go in first and start tanking damage.  Ryko and I would then jump in and start taking out frigates  and working our way up to bigger ships as they arrived.  When new groups arrived they had the bad habit of concentrating on Ryko and me instead of the big juicy battleship that El provided.  When Ryko or I got too much attention, we’d align to a far off target, like a station or a moon and warp out so that the enemy would again concentrate on the Abaddon.

El takes a hit

The battle raged on with El taking the hits and Ryko and I scraping the frigates off of him then working on the larger ships.  This went on for far too long as wave after wave of enemies arrived.  Somehow El instinctively knew when to have us change targets so that the Angels never had quite enough on the field to knock us out of it.  Then the battleships arrived.

This is usually when the smaller ships think twice about their futures, or lack thereof.  I’m sure Ryko had these thoughts too, but then he steeled his resolve and joined the fight.

Ryko Races into Battle

Ryko made the Rifter shine!  He used the sheer speed of the ship to out maneuver the battleships heavy turrets and threw off the assault of the smaller guns like they weren’t even there.  His attacks were relentless and he dove and turned while firing continuously.

Ryko makes the turn

El and I marveled at the sheer bravery exhibited by this scrappy little Rifter and kept firing, our rounds narrowly missing Ryko on several occasions.  One of the battleships must have taken a hit in her armory as she exploded unexpectedly.  I had noticed Ryko diving toward the ship as it exploded and I seriously feared for the Rifter and her captain.  My fears were removed as the debris cleared, I was happy to see Ryko’s scrappy little Rifter emerging from the cloud.

Target Destroyed

Slowly we wore down the gristled veterans of the Angel Cartel.  Until, finally, victory was ours.

The fight was long and and the rewards were few, but we all learned something about having good equipment and the skill to use it effectively in the toughest of situations.  For this, Ryko Tolsen, we salute you.

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