Friday, September 6, 2013

Fly Fearless!

I was going through my morning blog cruise and came across this posting by Sugar Kyle on Lowsec Lifestyle. It's a great blog, and one that I regularly read. Though I'm not too familiar with the corp she flies with, 7-2, they sound like a bunch of folks I would like based on her descriptions of them.

In today's post, she talks about deployments, station games, and a few other things. One of the things she mentions is how her corp mates have deployed to their target system with the intent of returning home in empty carriers.
"There is a lot of enthusiasm. A lot of energy. A lot of aggression. A lot of abandonment. People want to go home with empty carriers when we go home. I've always been torn between the idea of 'losing all the things'. I know that the reason for loss is because of a lot of activity. Loss is a side effect and not a bad one. But when people don't plan to come back in a ship I'm always torn by the image of losing a ship just to lose it. I know that is not the intent (always) but it makes me twitch. I tend to take things too literally."
I made a comment on her posting, but I want to take some time to dig into it a bit further. I've seen a lot of comments like this in my travels in Eve. The point is to win right? Why would you throw away your ship just to throw it away? The answer is complicated, but regardless of how someone answers, it's not all about getting exploded for the sake of it.

This is my Rifter. There are many like it, but this one is mine.
When a new candidate signs up with our newbie corp, the first thing we teach them is that the ship they fly is not them, it is only a tool. In the tears that are relished by so many in our line of work, one of the most common things you see is people who are off the deep end bat-shit crazy mad because "you killed me." No. It's just a space ship if you RP, and some pixels if you don't. Easily replaceable, there are many more to be had just like the one you're flying now (tournament prize ships excepted). If you're smart, you're flying within your budget in a ship you can easily replace, or in one you really don't want anyway.

Tools are meant to be used, and some, like space ships in Eve, are meant to be broken. The next thing we teach our newbies is to consider their ship forfeit the moment they hit the undock button. The last thing we teach before they head out into the cold darkness of space is to not fly safe, and fuck being brave.

Fly Fearless

I suspect that much like us, the guys in 7-2 are not heading out on their deployment this weekend for the sole purpose of losing ships just to lose them. That is an easy message to confuse with the Fly Fearless mentality. Flying Fearless dictates that if I have ANY chance of a positive outcome, I take it. In all likelihood my ship will probably explode, but I'm going to head in anyway to either win, or die trying.

Often times we'll be off in fleet and come across another gang that outnumbers us, out ships us, or both. The FC will be courteous (partially to absolve himself of any upcoming guilt) and inform the fleet "Guys, we can take this fight, but we probably won't win." The response in our fleets is almost always a resounding "Fuck it, let's go!" We win a lot more of those fights than we should. We also get dunked sometimes, but if you don't shoot, you can't score. We're also of the mentality that it's better to have fought and lost than get no fights at all.

This newbro knows how to Fly Fearless.
One of our newbros was out 2 nights ago looking for some trouble in his Rifter. He's barely a month old, but he's been diving into PvP with reckless abandon and an enthusiasm that I sometimes envy myself. He's had some help; one of our veteran pilots had been helping him come up with a low sp fit that he could fly well. A short time later, Alliance chat lights up with a link to his first solo kill. His target was nearly 12 times his age. He was over the moon super pumped, we were pumped for him, and the veteran pilot that helped him with his fit was probably grinning like a Cheshire cat most of the evening.

More sensible pilots than Xiderpunk would have seen the age of the pilot they were about to engage, and logic would dictate a low probability of success, meaning the proper course of action would be to GTFO. Xiderpunk is not a sensible flier, he Flies Fearless. He took a shot, and in this case he scored. He might get dunked on the next 10 times he tries that, but that one victory will keep him hungry for another one, and he'll keep trying until he gets it again.

Winning against the odds is like a drug in Eve. The shaking hands. The adrenaline. The jumping out of your chair yelling "GET SOME!" at the top of your lungs causing those friends and family around you to wonder if you've lost it. That's why we take those long odds. It's not about derping to derp, it's about winning when you shouldn't, and not being afraid of inevitable failure.


  1. Amazing post! I like that way of flying. The majority of the time i got some issues evaluating if I "do have a chance" due to n00bless but its funny aniways. Well, since theres always a chance that the other pilot is AFK you always got one (virtually) or for some reason he DC's or get a heartatack, wife aggro, diarhea etc. The point is , if your going in, do your best!

    1. Yeah, you never know. I took on an sfi in a comet a few months back. I killed him because he panicked when I didn't run and forgot to turn on his Ancillary Shield Booster. I nearly pooped my pants when he exploded,

  2. Good posts - also, the 'age' of a pilot does not necessarily infer total SP. Many (myself included) created all 3 on an account at same time, training only one - then much later (years in my case), get around to #3.