Editor’s Note: This week we’re featuring Signaleer Yankee Sullivan and his first blog entry. To summarize in his own words: “An in-character take on returning to flying in EVE, discovering new dangers and perhaps finding a new home…”
Damocles Trigonometry, no one told me about them.
Wait, that’s not what they’re called is it? Drama Thespians, no one told me about them.
I mean, I knew that some group had come along from dead space or the abyss, that they had come on the heels of the Drifters or were Drifters of some kind or another. But what nobody had told me was that these jerks would come and blow you up in High-Sec.
I can hear you ask now: “Well Yankee where have you been? They have been attacking for a couple of years now. You’ve been a capsuleer since YC-113. What were you doing?”
Well I was drunk, for about five years. After some adventures and fights I ended up involved with a fire haired pirate who roamed Low-Sec. I began running hulls and guns for her. Then that stopped, the work and the involvement. So, I began drinking. That was around YC-116. If you have four jump clones, and the right training you can drink almost non-stop and never really have that much of a hangover. So that’s what I did, I drank for five years. Drank in the ways that I had only dreamed of when I was still a mortal, fighting bare knuckle in the back rooms that had cost me both my natural eyes and earned me the favor of the man who repaid me with capsule compatibility tests. The kind of drinking that a man like me can be prone too when the heart is shattered, and purpose is lost.
If I am being honest, the purpose had been lost long before Reese podded my heart. Though I am not sure I really had a purpose before then.
Never mind, this isn’t about why I wasn’t paying attention for five years. The point is, I wasn’t. Then one day, when one of my clones had to be replaced because it had suffered catastrophic liver failure, I hit bottom. As close to bottom an undying Capsuleer can get. That and a brief communication from Reese: she had gone to fight the Amarr and help free her fellow Minmatar from the shackles of slavery or some such thing. She said that she realized that was her purpose and she knew I could find mine somewhere out deep in the black.
Paying out for a new clone and looking at that communication right next to my shrinking bank account made me realize I needed to do something. I won’t give her credit; it was a fiscally based decision I swear. I looked over the assets I still had and outfitted myself an Imicus with a probe launcher and a full suite of scanners.
We all know there’s no fortune to be made in High-Sec. But if you’re in a cheap ship and you’re looking for lost sites to exploit, no other capsuleer is going to risk the swift and complete wrath of CONCORD to blow you up. So maybe I admit I was being a little lazy. I’m no stranger to the art of safes, deep safes, perches and jump clears. But as I said before, no one told me about the Donation Tricycles.
So, I went, and I warped myself over to a star and began to leisurely fly away from it while I launched my probes. I’d never been great at probing down signals or ships. Plus, I think maybe the map and probe interface have been changed, it all seemed different than I remembered. Soon I forgot about all my other sensors and scanners. I was focused on guiding little probes around the system while I searched for Angel or Serpentis treasure. Getting that signal percentage up to one hundred percent in those moments became my sole obsession.
That was when the little buggers popped up, and I didn’t catch it, because in all my time in High-Sec the only things that had ever posed a threat in open space was another Capsuleer, and there weren’t any around. By the time I realized what was happening my power capacitor was being neutralized and an alarm told me my shields were down. I watched for a second…a stupid peer had decided shooting an Imicus was worth losing their ship to CONCORD. I waited another second and I was still being attacked. Too late I switched my readouts filters, it was no Capsuleer. That awful shrill sound filled my ears as the last of my ship’s armor was blasted away. Then a moment later the old familiar sensation of my pod being hurled out of my dying ship. I warped immediately away and put into the nearest station.
A short time later I was getting my insurance pay out sorted. Over and over I thought to myself never had I ever been attacked by something like a Domestic Troubadour in High Security space. My lips curled up as I realized I needed to catch up. That years of drinking and lonely heartache hadn’t just cost me ISK and a clone, it had cost me my edge, my awareness. A new determination filled me to become not just competent with probes, but a master. I would also learn who the Dental Triumphs were and where they came from, and how to fight them. I began to cycle through the GalNet when I saw an advert for Signal Cartel and saw that they were a group of explorers who eschewed aggressive action and sought the riches of both relics and knowledge throughout space. Not really the type of people I figured to want a former bare-knuckle fighter turned capsuleer gun runner. But I figured they could at least tell me who the Dancing Triglycerides were, so I hit the apply button.
Now, some small corner of myself feels a glimmer of hope that maybe this is where I belong.
For anyone else like me, maybe crawling out of the bottom of a bottle, or some sort of prolonged sleep, perhaps a decadent vacation, let me tell you this: Damavik Triglavians exist and they will kill you if you’re not paying attention in even the safest corners of space.
Editor’s Note: Click on the images to see full screen (in most cases 😉 )
Has this ever happened to you?
“I had recently discovered gas mining and was making good ISK at it. Normally, I was careful to mark my entrance into a wormhole, but this day I [was] super excited to get mining. I warped away from the wormhole entrance to make my first safe spot and was about to start scanning for gas sites, when I realized I did not save the entrance location. I freaked out a little at first, but then I got on Google to see what I could do. There it was! A link to evescoutrescue.com. Who knew! Anyway, I joined the EvE-Scout channel and typed HELP! Within a minute someone was responding and organizing a rescue. I was safely out of the wormhole in about 20 minutes.” – Sue T’Que
Or maybe one of these other testimonials is similar to your circumstance?
For this blog post let’s go over the steps you should take when you’re stranded and along the way I’ll share some behind the scenes magic of our EvE-Scout Rescue service.
The first thing a stranded pilot should do is ensure they are in a safe location in the system, then request immediate in-game assistance by going here and logging in with their EvE Single Sign On. The only information that we need authorized is the capsuleers current location.
Providing the location does two important things for us. First, it confirms that you are indeed in wormhole space as our service is only provided for that mysterious realm of New Eden. Second, the location is needed for our 911 Operators to determine if there is an EvE-Scout Rescue cache in the system and/or if ALLISON is aware of any wormhole chains to get there. ALLISON, or Allison as we like to call her, is our AI (artificial intelligence) onboard navigational assistant that many of our Signaleers fly with. Her name is an acronym meaning Artificial Life Limited In Scope to Onboard Navigation.
The importance of our rescue team knowing the location can’t be stressed enough and yes, you’re going to have to trust us. It has taken years for our reputation to get where it is today and it’s all because we have proven ourselves to be fair, neutral, and trustworthy in our interactions with our fellow capsuleers of New Eden. The EvE Single Sign On is safe and secure to use and our rescue team are the only ones who will know.
Along with the request, additional details can be provided in the “Message” box which is optional and not required, but can be helpful and useful to us (such as an ALT that could be contacted or your Discord handle if you have one). Once you submit the request, you’ll be taken to a confirmation screen, then once you confirm you’ll be instructed to join our “EvE-Scout” in-game chat channel as well as our Discord server channel #stranded-pilots-lounge. In both cases, those chat channels are PUBLIC, so DO NOT SHARE your location, we already know. 😉
Behind the scenes, the request pings our 911 Operators and Rescue Coordinators on our Discord server. We have pretty good worldwide coverage these days and I’m not kidding when I say if you’re in prime time US or EU time zones, one of our Operators will likely reach out to you in under a minute. In other time zones there may be some lag, but even then I’d say you’re likely to hear back in just a few minutes or at the most in under an hour.
This is where the magic truly begins and there’s usually simultaneous things going on about now. As you’re talking to one of our Operators who’s been through a training class and follows a Rescue Flowchart to help determine the best course of action, a Coordinator is already working with Allison to see if there are any known routes, or “active chains”, to your system. If there are any chains and even before an Operator has determined the best course of action for your case, a team is likely already on standby to head towards your system. If there are no active chains, part of our Operators process is working with you to see if you have the chain, but I’m getting a little ahead of myself.
Generally our Operator will determine one of three scenarios your rescue falls into: 1) That you are in need of supplies, such as probes, and there’s an EvE-Scout Rescue Cache in your system, 2) Allison has located a chain to your system or you’re able to provide one, or 3) Giving you a series of options including to wait until we find your system which could be up to a week, possibly longer.
Option 1: EvE-Scout Rescue Cache
One of Allison’s main functions is to maintain a database of active rescue caches that have been deployed by our Signaleers. What is an EvE-Scout Rescue Cache (ESRC)? It is a secured, anchored container located somewhere in the system. It contains (1) Core Probe Launcher, (8) Core Scanner Probes, and often a few “hugs” or other trinkets for fun. These containers once anchored can last up to 30 days before exploding unless they are “maintained”. Not only do our Signaleers deploy these in systems that need one, they also open them when passing through to extend their life expectancy and reset the 30 day countdown to explode as well as restock items as needed.
We currently have an active ESRC in 97.5% of all wormholes! That’s 2,539 systems out of 2,603 (not counting Thera) and simply amazing! So, it’s almost assured there’s one in the system for you. We have a lot of Signaleers that participate in this amazing service which you can see some of our Heroes here.
If our Operator has determined there should be an ESRC in the system with you, which you may want to confirm via D-Scan if you’re within range, then you’ll be provided some information on where it is, the password to open it, and how to get to it. With the fairly recent expansion of capabilities of shared Bookmarks, our Operator may be able to give you one to go directly to the cache. If not, we have a “Bounce” method and instructions to get you there. Once found, open it with the password, take out what you need, and you’ll be equipped to scan your own way out.
Hot off the presses and starting today, we’ll be adding a Noise-5 ‘Needlejack’ Filament to the ESRC container. This is an optional item that our Signaleers can include in the rescue cache and since we’re just now starting to roll out this option, it will take some time before we see any substantial coverage of wormholes that have it. These, once activated, will teleport you anywhere in space to a random Nullsec system. USE AT YOUR OWN RISK! But, it at least provides you with another option to get out if you need to in a hurry and the probes or launcher are of no use to you. Keep in mind, we will not come rescue you from Nullsec…
Option 2: Active wormhole chain
In some cases, the stranded capsuleer knows a chain that leads back to known space, but they’re unable to scan it back down due to forgetting to bookmark, lost probes, etc, or Allison was able to find one in her database. How does Allison know? Well, she’s a fairly advanced AI, don’t tell her I said fairly, and she can track our Signaleers that utilize her while piloting day to day for ESRC operations or other activities, if our pilots allow. By doing so, she builds chains of her own and our Coordinators are able to access that information and see if they can be used to get to our stranded pilot. If so and our Operator determines this is the best option, then the green light for a live rescue is given. Behind the scenes it becomes a fun race, with several Signaleer Rescue Team members trying to be the first to get there. For EvE-Scout Rescue, this is our content, this is our fun. With the immediate response of our Rescue team and perhaps some luck, the determined chain is still active and you’ll be guided out.
Option 3: Patience, all is not lost yet
Unfortunately, there are times when an ESRC is not in the system, the chain has collapsed, or our Rescue team is unable to get to you. If that’s the case, all is not lost yet. If you’re not in a rush and can be patient, then your case will be marked as waiting for rescue. Here again is when Allison comes into play. As mentioned before, she keeps track of our Signaleers that fly with her and should they enter the system you are stranded in, our Discord channel is automatically alerted, our rescue team will immediately get in touch with our corp mate, and the race is on to get to the rescue system! (Fun Fact: This is the technology that was tweaked and utilized to help me locate the last 600 wormhole systems I needed to complete my journey – Katia Sae.)
We’ll ask our corp mate to stay in the system until someone from the rescue team can join them. Most of us have Alts to hold systems for these occasions and we’ll try to get several in there to hold until we’re able to get back in touch with the stranded pilot. The rescue team will keep the system connections scanned down and chains determined back to known space and once contact has been reestablished with the stranded pilot, the rescue team will coordinate a time and guide them out. The average wait time is around 5 days with 45% of all rescues occurring within 24 hours.
Option 4: All is still not lost
Did I mention there are more options? 😉 If the stranded pilot is unwilling or unable to wait, believe it or not, all may not be lost yet. In some cases our stranded pilots have reached out to the “locals” or someone passing through the system and have found them to be friendly. Yes, it happens, they are helped out and safely returned to known space. At this point, if the only option left to you is self-destruct, then you might as well give it a chance. If they destroy you instead, you’re still taking the express return to known space, so what is there left to lose?
Option Boom: Okay, all is lost
Well, if none of those play out, then I’m truly sorry to say we have reached the worst case scenario and your option is to self-destruct. ☹ We hope it doesn’t come to this, honestly, as rescuing stranded pilots is our game play. As I said before, this is our content and what we find fun. Hopefully, it means you flew by EvE’s golden rule, don’t fly what you can’t afford to lose. If that’s the case, then this option may not be so bad after all.
Fun Facts and Stats on our ESR Program
In closing I wanted to share some fun facts and statistics about our Rescue Program provided by Allison’s creator, A Dead Parrot, and the manager of our Rescue Division, Igaze.
Oldest ESRC container in space was sown on November 3, YC120 (2018). It has been tended 54 times to extend its life and resupplied if needed. Signaleer Ace Rimmer Midumulf used it to save a pilot in November of YC121 (2019) and it’s still active today.
Our second-oldest cache was sown on Christmas Eve YC120 (2018), and it was last tended just 3 days ago, by bouzinsky Ozran so it should be around for a little while longer.
Since the spring of YC119 (2017), Signaleers have collectively sown over 34,000 rescue caches and performed over 132,000 maintenance visits (tending the cache).
On April 3, YC122 (2020) Signaleer Renek Dallocort jumped through a wormhole with Allison marking her 500,000th logged jump through a wormhole by one of our corp members.
Allison speaks to our pilots approximately 1.1 million times each year, and with that information in hand, Signal Cartel, as a corporation, typically visits about 1,300 unique wormholes each week, with our pilots covering almost every system in Anoikis (wormhole space) every 30 days or so.
The wormhole with the highest number of 911 calls is J110145, the Drifter hole named Barbican.
Our operators have fielded 779 calls to our 911 service so far this calendar year (as of May 9, 2020)
Our top ten client corporations
49 The Scope
43 Center for Advanced Studies
36 Strategic Exploration and Development Corp
31 State War Academy
29 School of Applied Knowledge
28 Federal Navy Academy
23 Pator Tech School
22 Deep Core Mining Inc.
21 Science and Trade Institute
19 Pandemic Horde Inc.
18 Caldari Provisions
Signal Cartel Rescue Report for May 3, 2020 to May 9, 2020
Total rescues for this period:
SAR: 6 Capsuleers saved from certain loss, thanks to your efforts!
EvE-Scout Rescue Cache (ESRC)
Highest active (non-expired) cache total this week: 2251 of 2603 eligible wormhole systems (98% of W-Space) set just after downtime on May 5th. Record levels are being maintaining with the 98% level holding all week!
SuperCacher (100 sows/tends)
SAR/ESRC Dispatch Whether someone is rescued or not there are many dedicated Signaleers responding rescue requests, either through our 911 page or in the EvE-Scout channel. These are our dispatchers. This week our dispatchers were: Ace Rimmer Midumulf, Bang N’ Donk, Captain Crinkle, Catbriar Chelien, Dagmar Maulerant, Jehan Dante, Maxwell Kurvora, Maya Laya, pris Naari, Salmon Putter, Woldrof Baloc Thingold, Xalyar, and Xavec.
Weekly Ship Giveaway Each week (while supplies last), a fitted T1 explo ship will be awarded at random to one of our ESRC pilots. This generous giveaway is being sponsored by Xalyar. This weeks winner is Zinov. Be sure to check your contracts to see if you are the next lucky winner!
Search and Rescue (SAR) The following Signaleers helped complete successful rescues of pilots stranded in J-space during the snapshot period. True heroes of Anoikis! (Note: ESR Coordinators are generally excluded from this listing)
Bang N’ Donk
Sir William Hillary (SAR Bronze for first successful rescue!)
New? If you are new to EvE-Scout Rescue (ESR) (took part in any Rescue or sowed/tended rescue caches) in past week and have not received a new member welcome gift, please leave a comment on the Signal Cartel Services Welcome thread in the forums, and we’ll make sure a welcome gift is sent your way.
Thanks again to all our participants. I trust the week ahead will be a great one for you!