Aring system, Genesis region. On the 2nd of April at 14:29, a new battle in the war for control of the region flared in the system.
The GenesisCrew (GC) and Shoot First. [SFAQL] continue to push White Sky. [W.SKY] and their ally LowSechnaya Sholupen [-LSH-] out of the region, reinforcing and destroying infrastructure in order to claim it and solidify their control of the area. One such piece of infrastructure was an Athanor refinery situated on a lucrative moon in the Aring system. It had been reinforced by GC and Shoot First without a fight and was scheduled to exit its final reinforcement timer in the afternoon.
White Sky and LowSechnaya Sholupen decided to defend the structure, assembling a small capital force while relying on Siberian Squads [SB-SQ] and Ranger Regiment [RR] forces to supply sub capital support. Siberian Squads managed to assemble an estimated 80 pilot Muninn heavy assault cruiser fleet while Ranger Regiment brought a 155 pilot Ishtar heavy assault cruiser fleet of its own.
The plan was to goad GC and their allies to bring capitals to the field, at which point the two sub capital fleets, aided by LowSechnaya Sholupen and White Sky capitals, would destroy the opposing force, thus hopefully shifting the tide of war. Following the plan, both the Siberian Squads and Ranger Regiment fleets waited outside the system for the signal while LowSechnaya Sholupen and White Sky in turn waited for their enemies to appear.
GC did indeed form up to contest the timer, assembling a 60 pilot Zealot heavy assault cruiser fleet with force auxiliary support. They also had three capital squadrons waiting in reserve, organized by their ally Shoot First. Snuffed Out [B B C], who had monitored the situation in the region, also offered to help, bringing an additional 40 pilot Legion strategic cruiser fleet.
The Zealot and Legion fleets bridged near the Athanor and set up. A cynosural beacon suddenly lit up near them, heralding the arrival of LowSechnaya Sholupen and White Sky. The two alliances had brought a combat carrier squadron with a couple of force auxiliaries serving as logistics wing. The capital ships materialized near the attacking sub capitals and launched fighters.
The attackers quickly responded, bringing in their entire capital reserve including force auxiliaries. The sub capitals and dreadnoughts targeted the defending capitals and opened fire. LowSechnaya Sholupen signaled their allies to enter the system while they brought in several dreadnoughts to fight the hostile capitals, targeting the hostile force auxiliary first.
The Ishtar fleet warped at long range off the attackers, landing 100 kilometers away from the maelstrom of battle and deployed sentry drones. They stayed around that range for the majority of the battle, using sentry drones to focus fire on the attacking ships. The Muninn fleet warped closer, landing around 60 kilometers from the attackers and opened fire.
The defending fleets managed to quickly destroy the Zealot fleet’s force auxiliary but the attackers swiftly replaced it, bringing several more to the field while focusing their own firepower on the LowSechnaya Sholupen and White Sky capitals. The combat carriers and dreadnoughts, outnumbered and outgunned by the attackers, quickly fell to their guns. The defenders in the meantime concentrated their firepower on the logistics wing of the attackers, aiming at the Guardian logistics cruisers. Several fell to their guns but thanks to the force auxiliaries on the field, the attackers managed to easily supplement them.
With most of the LowSechnaya Sholupen/White Sky capitals either destroyed or on the run, the attackers changed focus, targeting the two defending fleets. The first volleys were aimed at tackle ships which attempted to nab the Shoot First/GC capitals who were exiting their siege cycles and preparing to extract, their role in the fighting finished as the smoldering remains of the LowSechnaya Sholupen/White Sky capitals attested to.
With the tackle ships dispatched, the Zealots and Legions targeted the mainline ships of the defending fleets. Ishtar and Muninn hulls began to drop one after the other as the attackers were able to project their firepower far enough to hit even the elusive Ishtar fleet. The defenders however, were having little luck. The Muninn fleet suffered in particular thanks to both the Zealots and Legions fitting tracking disruptors which reduced the ability of the artillery cannons to hit the fast moving attackers. The Ishtar fleet wasn’t doing well either thanks to the defenders employing Nestor battleships armed with smartbombs to demolish their immobile drones.
Frustrated, the Muninn fleet resorted to hit and run attacks, warping to perches before swooping down at near point blank range of the attackers, firing an artillery barrage at the logistics cruisers before warping off again. However while they managed to destroy a few more Guardians that way, the Munnin fleet was losing mainline and support ships with each run. The Ishtar fleet was faring even worse, suffering a constant stream of losses.
The battle dragged on, with the attackers maintaining their advantage. The Athanor itself, which had become vulnerable at the start of the fight, remained under constant fire from the attackers, who managed to destroy it midway through the fight. Yet even with their objective lost, the Ishtar and Muninn fleets persisted, exchanging dozens of heavy assault cruisers for one or two logistics cruisers.
This exchange did not change for close to thirty minutes as the Ishtar and Muninn fleets kept sacrificing mainline ships with little to show for it as the attackers substituted their lost logistics cruisers for more force auxiliares. By then, both the Muninn and Ishtar fleet were in tatters, losing half their mainline ships in what was becoming a literal meat grinder. With their forces close to breaking, unable to break the main tank of the hostile forces and with no ability to further escalate, both fleets finally conceded the field and retreated. This left GC and Snuffed Out in control of the field.
Having secured the objective and won the battle, both fleets looted the field while extracting the force auxiliaries and finally departed as well, bringing an end to the fighting.
The battle report for the Aring system can be found here.
All told the battle lasted 75 minutes with Time Dilation not reported and the system hosting an estimated 500 pilots at the peak of the fighting.
GenesisCrew, Shoot First and Snuffed Out lost 30 ships in the fighting, including 1 force auxiliary and 10 logistics cruisers for a total of 10.85 billion ISK damage.
LowSechnaya Sholupen/White Sky, Siberian Squads and Ranger Regiment lost a combined 226 ships including but not limited to 10 combat carriers, 4 dreadnoughts, 2 force auxiliaries and 84 heavy assault cruisers for a total of 65 billion ISK damage.
Featured image credit: Razorien