Scourge instigated the battle. Forces which had been roaming the region with a small, 25-pilot Loki strategic cruiser fleet. The force was on the hunt for combat carriers and mining ships, searching for anomalies for slow or inattentive pilots. It finally managed to catch a couple of these in the ES-Q0W system where two Rorqual capital industrial ships had been busy mining in two different sites.
The Scourge fleet pounced on the ships, tackling both with relative ease. Realizing it didn’t possess enough firepower on its own to destroy the ships quickly, the alliance started moving dreadnoughts in range of the system, the fleet already having a cynosural beacon for just such occasions.
However, the tackled ships quickly broadcast their distress to the rest of the alliance, The Initiative. With reports coming in of dreadnought movements in the area, The Initiative promptly organized a response fleet. They made the call for super and combat carriers to assemble, as well as a few force auxiliaries. Within minutes, The Initiative’s rescue fleet swelled to nearly 50 pilots, with many members bringing secondary characters in dreadnoughts.
In the meantime, Scourge was able to secure seven dreadnoughts in total. The alliance lit two cynosural beacons, one for each tackled Rorqual. In the first site, they dropped only two dreadnoughts, supported by the Loki fleet while in the other site they brought the rest of their capital assets. The dreadnoughts entered their siege mode and targeted the capital industrial ships, quickly stripping them of their shields and forcing their pilots to engage their pulse activated nexus invulnerability cores, adding a ticking clock element to The Initiative’s response.
Racing to the system, a The Initiative cynosural beacon made its way to the first tackled Rorqual besieged by the two dreadnoughts and the Loki fleet. Scourge forces saw the ship uncloak on the grid and attempted to dispatch it before it could light its cynosural beacon but to no avail. Unto the grid jumped the bulk of The Initiative fleet.
The supercarriers and their smaller counterparts quickly launched fighters to engage the hostile dreadnoughts while allied dreadnoughts entered their siege mode, adding their firepower to the mix. Within a couple of volleys, the dreadnoughts were destroyed, leaving The Initiative’s fleet to gather its fighters and make its way to the other site, the first tackled Rorqual now free to escape.
The Scourge Loki fleet in the meantime retreated to the second site, choosing not to engage The Initiative’s capital force head on. At this site, the remaining Rorqual’s invulnerability mode was running out, forcing The Initiative to race its force auxiliaries to site or risk the ship’s destruction. A couple of force auxiliaries warped in only to face the five Scourge dreadnoughts. One of the force auxiliaries was targeted and destroyed by the Scourge capitals, giving the alliance some measure of vengeance. However, before long the rest of The Initiative.’s fleet landed and the dreadnoughts had to contend with it.
In a repetition of the first engagement, the super and regular carriers made short work of the Scourge dreadnoughts, aided by their own dreadnoughts. With the hostile capitals destroyed, The Initiative turned its focus to the Loki fleet. Having mainly fielded capital ships, however, meant that The Initiative had difficulty hitting the smaller, fast-moving strategic cruisers. Another issue was to do with tackle, as the Siren fighters proved to be too slow and hardly able to keep up with the Loki fleet. Though a couple of the strategic cruisers were caught, the rest of the fleet slipped away, conceding the field and retreating from the region.
This left The Initiative in control of the field. Having rescued its second Rorqual, the alliance achieved all its objectives with minimal losses. With the hostiles withdrawing, The Initiative. extracted its ships, bringing the fight to a close.
Battle report for the ES-Q0W system can be found here.
All told the battle lasted 16 minutes with Time Dilation not reported and the system hosting an estimated 80 pilots at the height of the battle.
Scourge forces lost 12 ships in the engagement, including 7 dreadnoughts and 2 strategic cruisers for a total of 19.97 billion ISK damage.
The Initiative lost 8 ships including 1 force auxiliary for a total of 4.06 billion ISK damage.
Featured image credit: Razorien