9UY4-H system, Providence region. In the early hours of May the 2nd, Providence Bloc forces clashed with RekkingCrew (RC) in the system.
The battle was fought over an anchoring Azbel engineering complex belonging to RC. The group had dropped the structure on the Providence Bloc Keepstar citadel grid in order to provoke a fight from the coalition. Providence Bloc reacted, forming an 80 pilot Raven battleship fleet. The fleet, commonly known as “booshraven”, uses command destroyers and micro jump drives to maintain its long distance engagement range. The force undocked from the Keepstar and started bashing the vulnerable structure with cruise missiles.
RC saw this and organized an 80 pilot Machariel battleship fleet with two force auxiliaries and two high angle weapon dreadnoughts in tow. The force bridged to the neighboring system of H6-CX8, jumped in and aligned to the afflicted structure. It warped, landing on the structure before aligning again, this time at the Raven fleet. Once ready, it probed down the Providence Bloc battleship fleet and warped on top of it.
The Raven fleet quickly used its micro jump drives to teleport away from the Machariel fleet which probed it down and warped to it again. This repeated itself several times, with each attempt resulting in the loss of command destroyers for Providence Bloc. The Machariel fleet employed heavy interdictors which used warp scrambling scripts with their warp disruption field generators to target the command destroyers and nullify their ability to use their micro jump field generators. The Machariels’ artillery cannons sealed the ships’ fate.
Losing most of their support wing that way, as well as a Raven, Providence Bloc realized they couldn’t continue to evade the Machariel fleet. Thus the fleet was given the orders to dock up in the Keepstar and reship. The Raven fleet disengaged and warped back to the Keepstar where its pilots docked up and switched to a Muninn heavy assault cruiser doctrine.
The RC Machariel fleet decided to continue and loiter in the system, waiting for Providence Bloc to reship and return to the field. What the fleet didn’t know was that the entire thing was a trap. Providence Bloc had secured reinforcements in the form of a Legacy coalition 95 pilot Muninn fleet and a The Initiative. [INIT.] 80 pilot Stuka (a mixture of stealth bombers, assault frigates and destroyers with logistics wing) fleet. Both these fleets had waited a few systems away from the battle site so as to not alert RC forces and were now closing in on the system.
After several nerve wrecking minutes, Providence Bloc finished reshipping to its Muninn doctrine and undocked. The heavy assault cruisers aligned to the Machariel fleet which had set up on the anchoring Azbel itself. The fleet warped, landing at long range (100 kilometers) of the battleships and opened fire. The battle had resumed.
Providence Bloc targeted the Guardian logistics cruisers of the RC fleet, attempting to cripple its logistics wing. The Machariel fleet focused its firepower on the Providence Bloc heavy assault cruisers. As the fight unfolded it became apparent that Providence Bloc was unable to break the tank of the logistics ships while the battleships volleyed the heavy assault cruisers. However before things could get worse, The Initiative jumped in and warped to the field, landing near the battleships and keeping a close (around 30 kilometers) range on the battleships.
The Stuka fleet added its firepower to the mix, but even with the stealth bombers’ torpedoes, the battleship fleet proved to be a hard nut to crack. The Machariels soaked much of the damage, their logistics wing which included the two force auxiliaries, remaining on the ball and keeping the fleet alive and well. The Initiative changed tactics and started pulling back, seemingly disengaging. In reality, it was increasing its distance to better steer its bombs. The stealth bombers launched wave after wave of bombs, hitting the battleships and claiming a couple with each run while damaging many others.
Worse yet for RC, the Legacy fleet entered the field and landed at close (35 kilometers) range of the battleships. This was done in order to make it difficult for the battleships’ artillery cannons to target the fast moving heavy assault cruisers. The fleet opened fire, loading close range ammo and alternating between battleships and their support wing, in particular the Loki strategic cruisers whose stasis webifiers were used to slow down enemy ships to allow the artillery cannons to better apply damage. However this turned out to be an unnecessary precaution as the RC fleet kept its attention squarely on Providence Bloc.
With all three fleets pummeling it from every side, including the waves of bombs, the RC logistics wing was completely overwhelmed. Casualties were mounting by the minute, as the heavy assault cruisers and stealth bombers seemed to burn through the battleships hulls at an increasing rate. Realizing their fleet had been effectively broken, the RC fleet commanders sounded the order to retreat. Yet the attackers had no intention of letting RC withdraw.
A constant swarm of interdictors descended upon the battleships, keeping much of the fleet under a cover of interdiction probes. The attacking fleets pressed their advantage, destroying many of the pinned ships. RC ships attempted to clear as many of the interdictors as possible while trying to emerge from the interdiction probe cover. The fleet aligned to the only other friendly structure on the grid, a Raitaru engineering complex which had already been successfully anchored.
Spotting this, Legacy interdictors managed to position themselves in time to intercept the battleships. Interdiction probes were launched in between the structure and the fleet, causing the fleeing ships to land not on the structure itself, but many kilometers away from it on the surface of the interdiction probes. The interdictors quickly launched more probes to further trap the ships and the hostile fleets re-positioned to destroy them.
Providence Bloc, Legacy and The Initiative gave no quarter. All tackled ships were destroyed, including one of the force auxiliaries. The other force auxiliary and the two dreadnoughts though, managed to slip away as well as a handful of ships. The majority of the RC fleet wasn’t so lucky and was destroyed to the last. With RC in full retreat, Providence Bloc and its allies destroyed the anchoring Azbel, securing the objective as well as victory on the battlefield.
With the engineering complex destroyed, the attackers cleared the last of the stragglers before finally departing back to their respective staging systems, bringing the battle to a close.
Battle report for the 9UY4-H system can be found here.
All told the battle lasted 38 minutes with Time Dilation not reported and the system hosting an estimated 350 pilots at the peak of the fighting.
Providence Bloc, Legacy and The Initiative lost a combined 50 ships including 1 battleship, 13 heavy assault cruisers and 8 stealth bombers for a total of 7.37 billion ISK damage.
RekkingCrew lost 66 ships including 1 force auxiliary and 44 battleships for a total of 42.46 billion ISK damage.