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I focus almost exclusively on PvP, whether solo, small gang, or large bloc warfare. In the past, I've been a miner, mission runner, and faction warfare jockey. I'm particularly interested in helping high-sec players get into 0.0 combat.

Monday, August 19, 2013

Lessons: The Fights You Don't Take

With a Sabre, I feel pretty confident rolling through null-sec.  It’s probably the second-safest ship you could travel with, behind cloaky ships.  You can usually kill any solo or small gangs that can catch you.  All you need to worry about is another Sabre – not as much for what the Sabre can do as for what friends he may have nearby. But in those cases, you can always burn back to the gate and escape.

Last night, I was returning from an alliance operation in my double-bubble Sabre.  And I saw nothing but a few ratters that immediately warped to a POS up when I entered system.  Except for one guy, an Insidious Empire bloke.  And he was in a Sabre.

Normally, I’ll take a Sabre-on-Sabre fight.  My skills are very good, and I trust in my ability to tactically overheat and fly head-to-head.  But I was in a double-bubble Sabre.

To fit two bubblers, you need to make some fitting compromises.  The double variety tends to be used in gangs and fleets more frequently, since the ability to bubble both sides of a gate isn’t as crucial when flying solo.  In addition to losing a gun, it also drops a Damage Control.

I had every reason to believe this guy was flying a single-bubble variant, so I passed on the fight.  I was faster than him and he clearly had an MWD as well – proving my theory that I out-skilled him.  That, and his eagerness to engage me (a fleet nearby, perhaps?) left me confident in my decision to avoid the fight.

But you can’t help but second-guess yourself on occasion.  It’s the type of fight I really enjoy – equal ships, in which the final result comes down to pilot skill.  Even if I lose, I have a perfect example of how to fly the ship better in my opponent.

I passed because I suspected my opponent had a better fit.  He came out to hunt folks; I was returning from an op that required a specialized fit for my Sabre.

Sometimes, knowing when NOT to fight is the smarter move.  Like in poker, winning players don’t win big, they lose small.

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