I had a few minutes and thought I would check out Auner to see if there were any fights available. Sure enough I saw a rifter on scan. I've documented how much I don't enjoy rifter vs. rifter fights, but I'm in the mood to get some PvP thrills and so I tracked Somagrave (a character about 1 month younger than me) to a Faction Warfare site. I arrived and he left after I had burned within 30k of him. Typical response by a FW frigate.
So I headed back to the station to repair the damage my overheated afterburner had done and undocked immediately.
Somagrave's rifter was again in the FW site. So I repeated the surprise visit - but this time with different results. He didn't fly away.
I burned towards him and turned all my modules up to 11. Interestingly, his rat minions in the site targeted me and came after me. I ignored them.
When I was within 10k of Somagrave I hit all the activate buttons. Scrambler. Web. Nosferatu. Autocannons! Nothing happened. Instead, a message popped up on my command console telling me that I hadn't targeted anything yet. DOH! I scrambled to target Somagrave while taking damage from his autocannons. I figured it was a mistake that would cost me another rifter.
By the time I had a target lock most of my shields had disappeared. Fortunately I was flying a rifter equipped with an armor repper! I orbited close and returned fire.
Somagrave was definitely ahead - the targeting blunder had really given him an advantage and I was soon in armor while he was still comfortably in shields. But then my overheated armor repairer started doing yeoman service. It pulled back damage while my autocannons were tearing into his shields and then his armor.
It was a close thing. We eventually both hit structure at about the same time and I was thinking that it might come down to a matter of who got a repair cycle last. But I also noticed that my armor repairer seemed to be doing a better job than his. I even repaired some armor when I was half way through my hull just to give me some additional breathing room.
In the end Somagrave's rifter exploded!
I was far into structure. It was a close match and one of the best I've taken part in. GF GF!
It's very possible that my overheated armor repairer was the difference (if Somagrave hadn't overheated his, it could explain things). Or maybe some of these skills that I've been taking to 5 for just a few percentage additional value really do make a difference. I don't know. I do know that the two rifters were almost identical twins (I have a meta afterburner and web while Somagrave's fit T1s). And he was shooting barrage and I was shooting phased plasma (which also might explain the difference).
In the end a very exciting and close fight and a confidence builder for me.
Current Personal Death to Flying Things Campaign Score: 12-23-1