Thursday, March 17, 2011

Eve Online: leaving SAS Alliance

Our corp, No Fixed Abode, has left the Saints amongst Sinners alliance – SAS – last weekend. When we were looking for a spot in nullsec, they generously provided us with one in Querious. We were welcomed, gear was cyno’d in, guidance and instructions were given and alliance chat/TS was friendly. I felt welcome, at home! Of course the ratting was great: in a few months’ time, I made over a billion ISK in bounties, loot and salvage even though I’m only a modest solo belt ratter, occassionally doing a Sanctum or Haven with other pilots. 
But I also liked the excitement of PVP, scrambling to the gate to intercept an incoming roam of reds, frantic instructions on TS and the SAFE UP! warnings in alliance chat to all miners out there, accompanied by exhortions to get in the home defense fleet, grab a pvp ship and join the battle. It was a good – and sometimes dangerous – time to be in Querious.

SAS was there as an IT renter, and when IT failscaded, we were on our own. By that time we were IT allies, not just renters anymore: just before IT bowed out they upgraded us, and for a while we held nullsec sov without paying rent. But pressure was mounting, and after some painful losses the number of pilots in alliance chat already started to drop- slowly but steadily. The miners and industrialists vanished to highsec and several of them dropped out altogether, and pretty soon there were only a few dozen stalwarts left in B-7DFU to defend the place. The downward trend was partially masked by Querious nullsec corps joining SAS, which we absorbed when IT collapsed, but it was real nonetheless.

It became obvious we couldn’t defend the entire constellation we had sov in – not with Goons, Atlas., -A- and PL knocking at our door. After some diplomatic efforts and leadership deliberations, alliance leadership announced a complete evacuation of our Querious holdings. In hindsight, I’m not sure that was the right thing to do. Of course it’s easy to say that now, but even at the time some of us thought we should try to hang on to B-7DFU a while longer. It’s a dead end system, with a truesec of -1 and a station in it, and hence easier to defend than most systems. Why not make a last stand, try to keep it as long as you can, and go down in flames if everything fails? It could have taken weeks to clear us out of B-7DFU if we’d hadn’t given up. The political situation changes so fast – you never know what could have happened in that time.
..And looking at Evemaps, it seems B-7DFU is deserted at the moment. It has plenty of sites to run - havens, sanctums - and plenty of belts with battleship class rats.. and now, on March 17th 2011, only 5 NPC kills in the last 24 hours? Is that the best you could do, C0nvicted? Really, we shouldn't have left our Querious home..
But, when alliance leadership tells you to evacuate, you evacuate, and SAS ended up spread out over the entire cluster, waiting for what’s next. And then, SAS leadership decided to go back home, to the place SAS became what it is today: the lowsec triangle in Solitude, consisting of Aeter, Sarline and Harner systems. Of course other people live there, but it was decided we’d fight them.
NOFAD consists of what is called ‘mature players’; we even discuss our teenage kids’ exploits in corp chat ;-) We have played together for several years, we are not likely to switch alliances easily. But, I have written enough about Lowsec a short while ago.. suffice to say NOFAD didn’t like being in Solitude. We would never have contemplated leaving SAS if there had been a plan to go back to nullsec in the foreseeable future, but at the time of our leaving, it was unclear whether SAS would attempt another shot at nullsec in 2011. In New Eden, planning something three quarters to a year from now, is really a long time, it’s an eternity! We didn’t fancy spending that many months of game time in lowsec. And so, over the weekend, we left SAS. We wish them well; they really were the best thing that could have happened to us and for that we are certainly grateful.

In the mean time, we are evaluating some offers we received for other nullsec places to stay. Highsec has lost its charm, its no longer a permanent residence for us. We loathe lowsec; its nullsec we want to be, and thats where were going again.

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