Tonight started out slow, asking for a 1v1 in the RvB channel didnt pan out as I had wanted, even starting out in a Kestrel. So I jumped over to Jan looking for trouble. There were a few ships on scan, so I did what anyone looking for a fight would do: Sit at the Sun.
Ive wised up and learned some tricks over my time of reading other people's experiences though, so I warped in at 100 and started flying straight up. Soon enough, a Taranis and Stabber jumped in, 130 km away though. With my ship aligned already, I started up the warp drive and left; letting out a hearty "pft, bring a good fight instead of gank" in local. To which I was told "Fair enough."
Warping back from a different angle after they had disappeared from dscan, I activated the AB and aligned. After a few minutes, a Rifter popped up in the overview. Flying towards each other, I adjusted my angle as we closed in to cause a little transversal issue with his guns. But its a Rifter, so that is difficult to do =P So began the dance of death. Practicing my manual flight with my Kestrel, I knew I was going to die quick and have to be aligned fairly fast with my pod. As soon as my shields went down, I aligned and awaited the inevitable while my overheated launchers did their thing to the rifter. Well, maybe next time Ill put some tank on my ship instead of all gank and maybe Ill win?
Anyhow, after warping my pod out to Autaris to reship, I started up a convo with my opponent for my after combat evaluation from his side. He informed me my fit wasnt that bad but did need some tank; to which I agreed. The fight had gone so quick and I was focused more on keeping within 5km while manual flying, I didnt notice his armor dropped down to 40-50%. That made me happy knowing I had some pretty good dps in a kestrel fit for nothing but gank. Possible fleet ship?
With a few words exchanged and thanks given from both sides for not bringing in friends, we agreed to run into each again; this time me in my comfort zone of armor tanking and him in his Taranis. I was hesitant at first tbh, fighting an interceptor, because I had thought they were fast, kiting ships. A quick look on his fits in BC corrected me though and showed that he would most likely use blasters. Well, that made me scared due to the buff they received with Crucible. Oh, how silly I was to be scared of blasters when there were much deadlier things hidden in the depths of that ship.
You probally already know, but I wasnt expecting some drones. Warrior II's at that. Only two of them, but they hurt! Chewed through my shields, unsurprisingly, but also ate through half my armor before I dispatched them. I really do owe thanks to Taurean for the insight into how important it is to dispose of drones as quickly as possible in a fight like this. He seemed to have issues with them during his travels at first, and I appreciate that he shared those experiences.
So with the drones dispatched, I focused back on the Taranis. I feel my manual flight may have messed up some here, or I was just doing it completely wrong. I would try to go towards him as the range increased from 2-3km to 5-6km, but as I did, I would almost fly past him, as if he had turned around to play chicken. I think its called slingshotting (what he was doing), but I caught it each time it was attempted and got my ship turned quickly enough to prevent my opponent from exiting missile range. Or maybe Im just not used to flying as fast as I was since he wasnt webbing. Lucky me?
Since the drones were gone, I was getting armor back to the higher levels of comfort and didnt need the overheat anymore. With things calmer now and myself letting the adrenaline subside, I continued focusing on the interceptor and keeping range low. It seemed like forever, but it was only a few seconds until his shield bled away and the armor was peeled back to reveal the hull, which also exposed the pod in a violent explosion of beautiful fireworks.
Pretty good fights imo. Yet again, I continued my convo with my opponent about the fight and our fits. It turned out he was using the wrong ammo when he wanted to be using antimatter. I understand that mistake tbh as Ive done it before too. I feel I lessened his pain a bit by explaining I have 82% or higher in all resists, so it would have made little difference what ammo he used =)
And with these two fights, I also made two new friends (my opponent and his RL friend in same corp) and was invited along on a roam to a system a couple jumps over. I accepted and soon enough was on dscan duty to locate a Russian Drake. Sadly, my new fleetmate hasnt had much experience in probing, so we were always one step behind. Oh well, another time perhaps, because I had to log out with only 3 hours before I had to be awake again to take my kid to school!