EVE Online

J122728 Spike Ball Home Defense AAR

Greetings Friends,

CEO of Be Nice Inc. of the Prismatic Legion alliance here.

On Wednesday a group of folks from Hard Knocks and Ugandan Death Squad arrived in our wormhole with the intent to evict us. This was not unexpected: evictions are inevitable in wormhole space and we have been living out here long enough to attract the attention. We have been preparing for the possibility for months by building capitals and logoff freighters, and bringing in a substantial cache of cruise missile Praxes. We had already seen the cruise Praxis defense doctrine firsthand at the fight between

and it worked quite well there. We also flip our fortizar and make a point to buy assets from inactive members before we remove them so our structures just aren't very big pinatas, so we're arguably not a very desirable target for an isk-motivated eviction.

When they arrived we decided to dock/cloak up, observe them, and avoid getting podded (mixed success on that one) while we reached out to our allies. There was a frigate hole to null-sec in our home when they took hole control. That it was there meant we could batphone all the people in J-Space we wanted as long as we had enough ships to hand out to whoever came since they'd be coming in frigates. We figured doing that would probably push our evictors to bring more people in though. It was also end-of-life so the attackers could have waited until it expired to show themselves, so we suspected they actually wanted us to bring more people in. We decided to just use the hole to get our members stuck outside the hole back in, as well as our friends from TURBO and Outfoxed. We asked several other groups to be ready to burn over later depending on how many the evictors brought if we got an entrance.

Our friends made a case for fighting the evictors on the reinforcement of our fortizar's shields instead of waiting for a later timer but before the enemy started to reinforce it Outfoxed all had to bail so they could defend their home from a Wormpilled fleet that showed up in their system. It was inconvenient timing but we understood that Outfoxed had to bounce and we opted to wait for a better moment to fight.

The evictors maintained hole control, but we did manage to get a group of people through in an unexpected way. An Astero pilot from our C3 static got rolled in with us and the evictors let it go out the new static. Since they left that C3 via k-space, we reached out and asked them to give us the name of the system they just exited into. They agreed to help us and that made it much easier to slip past the enemy doorstops. TURBO brought in a few more folks along with a group from OMGGF to replace Outfoxed: 15 interceptors in total. Our leadership team kept their approach strictly need-to-know just in case we had a spy, so our members were a bit surprised when blues started jumping through the hole they were observing.

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At this point we were settling in for a few days of eviction; mainly just hanging out, watching our evictors, and occasionally flinging rolling sigils at the wormholes to screw with the mass. A few more folks filtered in to join the evictors including a few from LAZERHAWKS. One of us fell for the old "invite to fleet" trick and got her Loki blapped and podded. As if that wasn't bad enough, the next day I made the mistake of sitting on the undock of our Fortizar while I was alt-tabbed out until I suddenly heard the start of a combat timer. My main was 12k off the Fort undock and blowing up in my Stiletto. They very generously opted not to pod me. We all vowed to stop making silly mistakes.

We continued to reach out to locals in our statics to see if we could get another entrance to bring a couple more people in. We managed to find more sympathetic folks who tried to help us but the C3s kept getting rolled before we could use the entrances we got. In the meantime, some of our allies were running locator agents on the enemy scouts to follow them into our home.

We debated whether we should try and make a play for hole control, wait for the hull timer or take the fight at the armor timer. We went with our original armor timer plan for a few reasons:

  1. It seemed like the evictors really wanted a big weekend fight instead of a smaller weeknight fight, possibly because it can be easier to muster more people on the weekend. We on the other hand were motivated to defend our home and ready to, even on a Thursday night.
  2. We felt having fewer numbers on both sides would benefit us. It adds weight to our cap advantage and it means we have extra ships to hand out when people need to reship instead of just one ship for each pilot who came. Since our Praxes had escape frigates there was a good chance our people would get to reship before they got podded.
  3. Fighting on a structure instead of making a play for hole control gives us the benefit of the structure's paint and webs to help with cruise missile application, as well as making it possible for our capitals to de-aggress and re-tether or dock up if things got too hot.
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So we took the fight on the armor timer. The enemy brought Ikitursas, Guardians, Legions, Devoters, Zarmazds, and a Monitor of all things. We undocked a giant spiky ball of Praxes with our command ships, a handful of Scorpions and our FAXes. (D-Scan looked like this). Shortly after the fleets engaged, our scanner flung his rolling alt at our C3 static to crush it so we could scan out an entrance for reinforcements and we undocked our carriers.

Between all of our Fortizar's EWAR and the guidance computers on the Praxes, the cruise missiles applied almost all of their damage to the Ikis. They started going down fast while our FAXes were having no problems keeping our Battleships alive. Our Magi pilots managed to land some solid booshes and while the enemy returned the favor, our Praxes had so much range they just kept shooting anyway. Eventually the enemy fleet warped in close so we brought two dreads out and slugged it out at close range. When the evictors warped off we had destroyed 21 Ikitursas and a Guardian, and we lost two Praxes. Our Fortizar repaired and our jaws collectively hit the floor.

We managed to get entrances for RONIN AND AD4PT during the fight, but by the time they got there it was over. We took back hole control, though it wasn't really contested by the evictors, and waited for the rest of our structures to repair. After that we reinforced the enemy POS and Astrahus. The next day it became clear that they were leaving. We finished off their POS on Saturday and their Astrahus 48 hours later.

Looking back on it we learned some important lessons from all this:

  1. Cruise Praxis good. It's a really solid and easy Home Defense doctrine that's got a lot going for it: cheap, high damage, loads of mids, pretty much everyone can fly it, the capsuleer package made them easy to bring in and easy to suitcase, and the cruises shoot faaar. It's by no means unbeatable, but it works well. Credit goes to Ashy & Teddy of Outfoxed for coming up with it, though I'm a little bummed we didn't get to use the Target Spectrum Breaker since CCP MURDERED it.
  2. Allies can be found everywhere, not just on your batphone list. Random scanners that get rolled in, people who live in adjacent systems, even people who recently died in those adjacent systems, all of them might be willing to help you and you lose very little by asking. One of them even asked if they could come in with our backup and join the fight.
  3. Fight on your clock, not anyone else's. Even before the eviction, I was told that it was crazy not to wait until the hull timer because it gives you more time to get more people in or maybe a frigate hole. We didn't because we decided we already had enough for this timer.
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I hoped but did not expect to actually rebuff this eviction attempt. We figured we'd blow up a few ships before we ran out of Praxes and that we'd maybe inflict enough losses in a relatively cheap doctrine to make people question whether or not we're actually worth evicting for isk. But we had some things go very right for us and our members were motivated to fight off an eviction, so our spiky ball of death prevailed… this time.

I have to caution my members against over-celebrating though because next time we might not be so lucky. The folks who tried to evict us are in alliances that are fully capable of taking on even bigger fish than us, and they're not even the only groups in wormhole space capable of doing it. For the moment though, our structures are still standing and that is indeed worth celebrating.

Regardless of what happens next, I'm glad we got a chance to put our preparations to use and we appreciate that our evictors gave us that shot. Really. I also have to shout out to our members in BNYSE/PRISM as well as Outfoxed, RONIN, OMGGF, SPOOPY, AD4PT, our BFFs at TURBO, and everyone else who helped us along the way. Holler if you ever need us for your own spiky balls.

We are always recruiting.

– XVXTeacherVXV


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