When you are in space you sometimes have time to think, Moving from one gate to the next or on point, watching a station. You can spend some of that time catching up on news of the day or chatting with friends but still, thoughts intrude.
Mike was drifting in a distant orbit around a station in Haatamo watching to see what Heth would do next. Not that he had a personal vendetta against the man but Luminaire was in the right hands currently and it was prudent to make sure it stayed that way. But as the wily old badger was holed and welded into his den, there was time to think.
The news was filtering in through the mesh of various biased news sites about the battles in the Fountain region. The hardest thing was being able to tell who was winning the war. Each side claimed different objectives and when those objectives were all achieved both would be able to claim victory.
Another sweeping orbit of nothing but space. In the end it was about cost. The CFC had said they were invading for the moons and control of them, to be able to keep living the lifestyle to which they had become accustomed. TEST was the current occupant of the region so they were being convinced to leave. Except they had not left yet.
So it was for currrency. Mike had once read that wars were armed robbery, written large. But what cost? that was the other argument about the wars. The ISK battles. Each time there was a battle in fountain the accountants would come out and compare ledgers and declare one side or the other the winner based on the current value of ships destroyed. Then they would argue about how much of a war chest each side had and how long this battle could go.
Mike looked at one of the battle reports and then frowned and looked closer. There was another currency, one that was not showing on the accountants ledgers. Time.
It was spent in so many ways and in the current battles, a new way. With the doctrine of T3 strategic cruisers there was a cost that didn’t show on the accountants ledgers. Time. Pilots time was as valuable as isk. Quite often activites would be rated on return per ‘tick’ with the tick being a measure of time (20 minutes, for some).
A fleet that was blueballed or taken out and then stood down without any engagement might not lose isk but there was the time that the pilots invested and donated to the cause. If you took a T3 out then there was the risk of damage to your training. Die in a Loki or a Tengu and you might be set back DAYS of training. Lose a fleet of them and the loss could be measured in weeks or months. Mike wondered what level of dedication it took to be willing to face that loss over and over.
Was the war worth it? When you could all fleet in small ships such as Caracals and still darken the nebula with your power? The battles in Fountain were showing more than just fleet doctrine, they were showing levels of dedication. It wouldn’t be who had the most isk, it would be who could take the damage and keep coming back swinging. In the past, Goons have always managed to keep up the flow of pilots and isk and stayed the course.
Or, as some tinfoil hatters had asked. Was this just bread and circuses for the masses of pilots? Was Fountain just a Thunderdome of bloody spectacle to hide from pilots the truth of the unending servitude they had signed on for?
Mike smiled and set for docking. He had meals to cook and people to talk to and answered to few save his own whims and the favours he owed friends.
I have been in fleet engagements and read of many more. Tidi to the point where you can leave for 10 minutes while you warp to station. Entire fleets watching movies because nothing is going on in game. Do you value your time? Is it a currency for you?
SOME of us still pay subscriptions and expect gameplay for that money.
Up until I was elected I have paid, never managing to save enough to plex.
Seldom regretted any activity I was involved in because I knew that if I got bored there are always other things to do. And usually friends around to do them with.
fly it like you won it