Flieger, grüß' mir die Sonne, grüß' mir die Sterne und grüß' mir den Mond. Dein Leben, das ist ein Schweben, durch die Ferne, die keiner bewohnt! - Hans Albers, F.P.1 antwortet nicht (Adaptation in the 80s: Extrabreit)

Thursday, 8 September 2016

Not my night

It´s one of these nights in Elite, where the word "Dangerous" has meaning. 

The ingame galaxy map, which is supposed to show trade streams, does not show any data concerning the trade of landmines, even though I buy every trade data from all adjacent systems. Nobody seems to trade landmines. This might be because the engineers outpost is actually hidden and only revealed to a priviledged few. However, I would have hoped that plenty of other players would deal with landmines for Liz. Again, the fan pages in the internet are my saviour. I pick the first location, which offers enough landmines for sale, so that I might satisfy engineer Liz´ demand. 

However, jumping over to LSH1651, the system doesn´t show many of its planets, despite me having bought the system´s exploration data via the galaxy map! My Asp does not have a scanner installed, so there is no way that I actually find the outpost I am looking for. I have to jump to the next best named system (good indicator that all system data is available) and buy a scanner. Having done so and jumping back, I finally find the planet with the outpost I am looking for. Alas, it is 18,000 ls out there. Sigh. About an hour of game playing has already passed, nothing but hindrances so far.
Finally arriving there, I load up those damn landmines and make my way back. As it turns out, of my 58-ton cargo capacity, only 40 tons of landmines did fit in, because some missions from before sneakily stuffed some commodity as mission reward. 

My game session time is short, and I still have three stacked base assault missions from last session. Thus, I postpone the “operation landmines” and launch from the planetary outpost to the space station, to stack more of the same mission. On this short route, I get interdicted. In my Asp, I feel confident, so I play the evasion minigame just for fun, and I loose it, as usual. Boy that was the wrong choice. Frameshift drive cools down much slower, and I have two greedy Diamonback Scouts on my pelt. No matter how I jiggle and boost and turn, even with its powerful prismatic shield, my Asp is toasted in no time. Damn! Scratch of two million Credits, more than my current mission log will earn me. As a side service, my cargo hold is now also empty.

Launch again. And again, I am interdicted, wtf!? This time, it is just an Eagle. Feel all my wrath!
Finally, on the station, there are no more missions to stack. The Blue Mafia and all other agents here offers entirely different mission sets. Before their timer runs out, I decide to finish the missions in my log. Jump and supercruise 8,000 ls. And, also a rare thing, on my scanner blips a hollow triangle. This triangle happens to be a Fer-de-Lance, and the CMDR whose name I did not memorize is alleged to Felicia Winters. Which means, with my allegiance to Aisling Duval, I am prey. 

I probably should have changed my course to try to wiggle him off. Instead, I slow down and try to exit supercruise, but my ship´s speed is too fast for that. The interdiction happens quickly. My ship spins wildly around, even though throttle was at zero. And me too, in real. WTF, something is tugging on my VRgoggle´s and my headset´s cableset. It is my cat. She got entangled, no idea how she could have been so stupid. All my head mounted tech gets tugged and ripped, and until I am free again and have mounted all stuff, I stare at the insurance screen. Scratch off another 2 million Credits.
This is not my night.

My cash is dangerously low, just about one million Credits left. Travelling on with my Asp would risk loosing its entire asset value of 44 million Credits. So, with much humiliation, I go to the ship dealer and shop for a cheap old rusty Eagle. It can fit a hangar for the Scrarab. I do not need more to finish my mission stack. But humiliated I do feel.

After the hyperjump, again the same CMDR blips up and again approaches fast. Nono, not this time: I was cautious and had my Eagle only at half speed. As such, I am able to slow down fast enough and exit supercruise before he is close enough for an interdiction. Back in normal space, I boost away. It is now a tricky decision for the Fer-de-Lance: Will she enter my low exit wake, then I can supercruise away with good chances that she will be left too far behind for another interdiction attempt. Some time passes, but no Fer-de-Lance. She might be waiting close by to immediately catch me back in supercruise. I won´t risk this and jump into another system. Then back. No hollow blip this time. She maybe got bored or is busy with another interdiction target.

This time, approach my target planet by a orbital vertical vector. Like this, any interdictor will have to first also rise up from the orbital plane, and until she did so, I should have had enough time to either arrive or hyperjump away. But no hollow blip remains to be seen.

Instead, just mere moments close to the planet, I get interdicted again by an NPC ship. WTF, isn´t it enough already!?! Having learned old forgotten lessons, I throttle down and let theinterdiction happen, then boost immediately away and can thus re-enter supercruise before the interdictor has acquired me as a target. My crappy C-class scanner doesn´t even identify the interdictor ship class. Finally, I arrive at my destination and descend to the planet surface.

Arriving at the same rocky landscape as last time, it turns out that my Eagle as a much easier time to find a landing spot than the fat Asp. Destroying the power grid is easy, now that I have the routine. Bing, plus 1.1 million Credits. Not exactly for a profit, this night. 

Jumping back to Eurybia, the missions offered have not become better. I think this is a fine moment to log out. Nothing more good can come out of this overall rather botched night. At least I regained plenty of long forgotten experience!

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