A Note from a Former Signaleer

Editor’s Note: Thrice Hapus, our CEO, received this email and wanted to share it (with Felippe’s permission). This served as an excellent reminder of the long-term impact a corporation can have on its members, even after they move on to experience other parts of New Eden.

To all who help train and mentor new players within this great game, We salute you! o7

Dear Thrice,

I write to share my joy. This evening I completed my first Silent Battleground.

Felippe en Distel

I’ve been jumping into wormholes for quite a while, and I wondered whether I’d ever see one, but now I have. It was in a Class 5 shattered system ( J004998 ) that I entered from Syndicate space, and I just barely scanned it down with a probe strength of 104.2. Actually, I almost didn’t try. As I was scanning down the hole, I saw a Buzzard and then a Draugur on d-scan, and having never even known the Trigs have a command Dessie, I had resigned myself to moving on to the next hole. Probably those folks are running the Silent Battleground, let them do their thing. But… I had my probes out already, might as well see if I can get the Battleground to 100%, right?

So using a cube arrangement and after some fine adjustment of the probes, I managed to scan it down. And since I scanned it down, I figured I might as well warp in cloaked, take a look. I had never even seen the thing before. So I warped in cloaked… and there were all the cans, untouched. Now I get paranoid. What about those other ships on dscan? Are they hunting explorers? The Buzzard is probably paper tanked, but I’m worried about the Dessie. Do I take the chance? I looked at my empty hold, and that made my decision easier. Worst case, I’ve got a spare Blackglass and Zeugma waiting for me in GE-8JV. If I get ambushed, at least I gave it a shot.

And for the next 35 minutes, I was wired, hacking cans and spamming d-scan, just waiting for the ambush. What I didn’t know beforehand is that some of the loot is bulky, 10m3 a piece. Around 15 minutes in, I had to start making decisions about what I could fit in my hold, and Kenny Rogers starts singing in my head (“you never count your money while you’re sittin at the table / there’ll be time enough for counting when the dealin’s done”). And I keep chugging through the cans. I remember the wiki page saying that 3 explorers can finish the site before it despawns, and I’ll be proud if I can finish half. My phone buzzes, I turn it over so I don’t get distracted, and I keep spamming d-scan.

Maybe these are the kind of explorer hunters that let you finish a site, and then blap you. Maybe I should leave a can unhacked and warp off. But what kind of twisted person waits 35 minutes for someone to finish the site? And if they had the skills to scan it down, they would probably be running it themselves. So I hack the last can, then go back and grab a few more datacores I had jettisoned, so that my hold is completely full now. Before I warp off, I cloak up, pump up my graphics settings and snap a few pictures and decide I need to share my joy.

And I know that I would have never been able to do this if not for my time in Signal Cartel. Here I am with proper skills, experience, and equipment to pull this off. So I must express my profound gratitude to you and the other Signaleers with whom I’ve exchanged knowledge and with whom I share the spirit of exploration.

As I write, I’m still cloaked up in the wormhole, my fear that someone is camping one or more of the exits (only 3 ways out) gradually fading. Maybe I’ll try the Low Sec exit and hope it’s something pleasant like Vecamia. I suppose you’ll be able to tell the outcome from my killboard in the morning.

Yours in space,

Felippe en Distel

Anatomy of a Rescue

It was a quiet night at ESR Central Command. And before you get any false ideas in your mind about what that is, it’s basically a few small desks in a tiny, cluttered office buried deep somewhere within Paleo station. Even though the space has been mine for close to a year now, I still get turned around sometimes when trying to find it. “Labyrinthine” is a pretty word that comes to mind.

At any rate, it was quiet. A Dead Parrot and I were just sitting around chatting. While not an “official” member of the SAR crew, Parrot’s work with Allison has made him an integral part of what we do, and he’ll often be found in the SAR office, working on one thing or another. It was getting late on this evening, and we were done working and had turned to discussing how to encourage our rescue pilots to keep at it, brainstorming ways to keep the heart fires lit and to help keep enthusiasm high. Parrot was right in the middle of saying something about Allison’s role in all of this, when the stillness of the office was disturbed.

It was the chime that we both love (a chance to help!) and dread (what if we can’t?), the alert we get from Allison any time a rescue pilot enters a system with an active SAR request: “ESR Team, I just flew into J111629 (An active SAR system) with Holphi Kord.”

Parrot was startled out of his reverie. “Holee cow poop! Now I have to stay awake.”

“Wow,” I replied. “How’s that for timing?”

“Amazing.” Parrot was already springing into action to check on Allison’s logs.

Allison’s alert had gone out over the network to all of our Coordinators. We got a reply right away from Triff: “One of you two got this? I’m out and didn’t want to have to remote in.”

From some remote corner of Anoikis, Igaze chimed in: “I can get in and message Holphi. There’s not a Tripwire chain, though.” Igaze was out sowing and tending rescue caches.

Parrot was already on it, spooling back up the main systems that we had just put to sleep for the night. “Iggy, are you in touch? I can check Allison’s logs if you need me to. Maybe find the kspace connection.”

“That would be great. He’s not sure the exact route he took in. Looks like he came from null. He’s scouting connections now.”

With Igaze in touch with the rescue pilot, Triffton was off the hook, so he rang off. (We do like to give our Coordinators a break ever now and then!) Parrot realized pretty quickly that we did not have any recent intel on the system Holphi had discovered, and we communicated all of this through Igaze so everyone was on the same page.

After a few minutes of discussion, Igaze got back to us: “I’m letting Holphi map. I’ll be off for 30 minutes or so.” And than about 15 minutes later we received an update: “He found a null exit. I’ll be available again in an hour.”

After another 30 minutes, Allison notified us that Angel Lafisques had flown into the same system with Holphi. The two of them did their thing, and got every connection to this system scanned down and noted in Tripwire.

Igaze came back on: “I’m going to try and get back to Thera and then see if I can get there. The null connection is 38 jumps out though. I, of course, am buried as far from k-space as I can get, I think.”

“Don’t kill yourself to get there,” I told him. “Especially since we have other pilots in system. Have we heard from the stranded pilot yet?”

“No. Been mailed, though.”

About 30 minutes later, we heard from Igaze again: “Ran out of time. Sitting in a C1 with low static. Angel is scanning routes but won’t be on until again until 20+ hours from now. I’ll be back in 8 or 9 hours to see what’s been scanned down.”

So that was the end of it for the night. Until the stranded pilot replied, there was little more we could do but wait.

Then, early the next morning, Igaze provided a status update: “Angel has things mapped out. Pilot just responded and will be available in several hours. I can’t be on then, but I think Angel has it in hand.”

So we each went about our business, always mindful of this stranded fellow capsuleer, anxious for the next update, eyes unconsciously darting to the clock every few minutes. Several hours later, we received a notice from Allison that Holphi was remapping the system, updating it with the most recent connections.

Igaze had been in touch with the stranded pilot and was hopeful. “We might get this guy tonight. He’s online now and Holphi is talking to him. We’ll see what they figure out.” We all sent our best wishes to him, Holphi, and Angel.

About five hours later we received final confirmation: “Looks like the rescue was completed!” There was much rejoicing, a little bit of paperwork got filled out, and we all went back into waiting mode — ready to spring into action at a moment’s notice when our services were once again required by some poor, lost soul.

This is not an atypical rescue. They are each different. Each comes with its own unique challenges and each requires a team of dedicated pilots and office personnel. If what you just read sounds like something you’d like to be a part of, consider joining Signal Cartel, and get ready for the first time our copilot AI, Allison, tells you: “Captain, this system has an active Search & Rescue request.” It’s a completely new way to get your heart pumping and your adrenaline surging, as you become a vital part of the EvE-Scout Rescue team.