Commander Klytie Ulloriaq, a female minmatar brutor flying under the colors of the small null sec alliance Capsuleers United could feal the vacuum of space rushing around her ship as she accelerated with her task force through the far reaches of the lawless void. She was currently manning a Vagabond class heavy assault cruiser, manned with as much firepower as the boundless creation corporation could fit on her. The 220 millimeter guns she could see where already spooled up, their heat sinks spinning to quickly dissipate heat into the dark space around her. The guns were loaded and ready, she could feel that as well through her implants.
The task force around her, by ship standards, was a mammoth in size. About two kilometers from her small cruiser, which in itself was as long as the buildings on Jita 4-4 were high, was the monumental hulk of a Ragnarok class Titan, it's sixteen kilometer beam able to cast shadows on planets, and destroy moons with her ramming attacks. The massive 3500 millimeter repeating cannons the size of her seemingly small ship.
However, despite the huge ships surrounding her, composed of a smatter of dreadnaughts, three carriers and a support supercarrier, plus one of the new motherships, made for combat survival, huge gang boosts, and holding batteries full of light weapons designed to snipe enemy drones out of the sky, the group was small, totaling only 250 ships in all. And while this size might seem big to the light combat pilots whom flew for the agents in empire space, the size down here in the lawless areas, where the empire had no say in what ships weapons or modules you could fit on those ships, it was small. These sort of fleets normally numbered from 500 to one thousand pilots, and most were always in capital ships or battleships,w ith a few specialized ships, such as the broadsword heavy interdictor flying at the head of the pack.
And yet Klytie felt confident. The rules had changed recently, but the tactics and equipment, not quick to adapt, hadn't. Klytie knew, that despite this being the home system of their nemesis, a three thousand man alliance named Blitzkrieg Incorporated, they had a shot at coming out victorious.
"All ships align to the C-Z9M8 stargate, prepare for warp. Load guns, activate self boosting mods. Assault command ship, your with me, ready your warfare link modules." The tech 2 Chaos class assault command ship activated it's link modules, it's hull literally glowing with all the petabytes of information it was sending out to the surrounding ships. Klytie spied her heat sinks on her guns spoll up, preparing to take the extra brunt of the increased rate of fire her guns now had, thanks to that allied ship. Everyone else was also preparing for the extreme amount of firepower their guns could now spew. A maelstrom not far away, hovering under the Ragnaroks massive bulk could be seen spreading his 800 millimeter repeating artillery cannons wide, so that the recoil didn't ruin the barrels during combat.
"All ships prepare for siege combat. Goliath." She could see the titan turn slightly towards her, acknowledging her command, "Upon landing out of warp, you know what to do."
Warp drives spooled up, and engines flared as the ships suddenly accelerated to superluminous velocities, tearing through space and time at extreme speeds. The faster smaller ships slowed their pace so that they could keep speed with the massive capital ships, and so that they could all burst out of warp at once.
Upon landing, and deactivation of the warp drives, the Ragnarok launched it's veritable storm of rocket propelled projectiles from it's Gjallarhorn doomsday weapon, the gases making a roar as the multitude of fiery explosive warheads zipped away past the stargate looming in front of them. The gates energy steam signal would lead the weapon to it's source almost a light-year away in the adjacent system. A multitude of noises struck home as their alpha strike snapped and ripped at the enemies blockade units keeping the subcapitals from using the gate. The capitals themselves were confined to this system, on loan to them from IT alliance for help in their war against the menace of Goonswarm. They had been using it as their staging and training system for this very day. Several seconds later, Blitzkrieg Alliance, whom had chosen to defend their system, instead of attack Klytie's own brigade of ships, answered their strike with a retaliation of doomsday weapons and extra large caliber guns and missiles, fired from just as long of a range as their own weapons, on the far side of the gate, using a partial matter stream mounted on only the largest ships to attack from a lightyear away. The weapons struck the titan and surrounding dreadnaughts at many times the speed of light.
"Dreadnaughts, Goliath! Return fire!" The Ragnarok dreadnaughts, four kilometers in height fired their 4500 millimeter artillery cannons into the void, their computers telling them they struck home on more blockade units. The units were small, yet stationary, easily hitable. They limited the size and mass per day that each gate could jump through. The less there were, the more ships could get through at one time. Most blockade units were redundant, as it only took one too halve the amount of ships able to get through, and more would reduce the amount exponentially, till not even an interceptor or small drone could get through.
Fortunately, to do this blockade system, was a self imposed exile not even the might of Blitzkrieg could surpass.
"Logistics ships! Carriers! Aid the dreadnaughts and Goliath in defense, I don't want a single one lost." The smaller ships, including Klytie were orbiting the larger ones now, hoping not to get hit by the massive incoming projectiles. Finally, a fleet wide alarm sounded, as the titans tactical computer told them that enough blockade units were down to jump a standard battleship once every day. From this point on, depending on alliance size and preferences, subcapital class ships would be dukeing it out for now, without the aid of capitals. At least on this side of the gate.
A second alarm, this time double, telling them that twice the amount could get through. Now four times. The rate accelerated as more ships fell. The escort carriers prepared to take on the smaller ships they needed to pound into oblivion.
Finally, a high pitched shriek, the begin combat alarm sounded, and the gate in front of them lit up as the small fleet jumped through. They were immediately greeted by two titans and may other smaller ships. Luckily, the titans weapons could not hope to hit her smaller faster ships. Even the battleships were somewhat safe.
"Ariel group, with me, we shall hunt down the interdictors! The rest of you, squadrons stick together and pick your targets as you go!" The escort carriers launched five fighter drones each, to combat the full size carriers and the massive supercarriers, whose fightbombers could not hope to keep up with the smaller fighter drones, much less hit them. They were effectively dead in the water, not able to hit many ships. The enemy carriers themselves vaulted fighters their way, but Klytie's minmatar group was far too fast for them, even the battleships were capable of reaching speeds higher than one thousand meters per second. Klytie spotted a group of heavy interdictors, and marked the targets to her special high speed assault squad only. The groups vagabonds ripped towards the slow cruiser sized vessels at three kilometers a second. When upon them, Klyties massive auto-cannons ripped their shields to shreds, the vibrations of the guns resonating through her pod. The other ships did the same, and soon, no warp jamming vessel was left, just a bunch of floating debris. By now, Klytie had lost a few ships, including a couple escort carriers. Their groups needed to act fast.
Recon ships, head to designated coordinates and await for my mark for the cyno fields. Eviscerator squad, hammerhead squad, follow them and protect, hold position two hundred KM from the strategic kill points. Capital ships, ready your jump drives. Ariel squad! With me! We shall attack the Cyno Jammer head on!" The designated groups split off, the recon ships cloaking as they went. The smaller capitals lanced about on their self-designated close support runs. A supercarrier on the enemies side had already fallen. Theyw ere starting to adapt though, and smaller drones were now darting all over the place, trying to intercept the smaller frigates and cruisers as they went about on their space strikes. One of the titans was already flaming from partial structure damage, but a quick acknowledgment from her escort carriers told her that ship was pumping shields fast.
And after that, the scenery blurred and her seven man squad was in warp.
"Prepare for close support attack runs guys, the jammer will be heavily defended." She said as the designated mess of modules came into view, making up the outpost. The jammer was too the side of the shields. As soon as the group came out, they were aggro-ed by the outposts guns, which were far too slow too hit them when at speed. The group immediately angled for the jammer, and Klytie slid into her close strike mode, which, as she saw, shortened the range of her guns and her rate of fire, but boosted her volley damage and tracking, allowing to make her insanely high speed runs incredibly accurate. The scenery zipped by now as her speed was now increased too six kilometers a second, her flight path laid out before her. She adjusted the flat holographic image of her projected speed and turn path to match her guns abilities, and then designated the point her guns should hit, right inside the capacitor of the jammer, which should take it offline without totally destroying it. As suggested quickly, a group of her wingmen vaulted forwards, preparing to take out the shields. The second ship placed a true shot, and the shields went down. Now it was the follow up group, Klyties group, which were aiming at the critical capacitor of the module. Klytie was the first in, and her guns fired. The shot swung wide, the volley scraping the very edge of the hull and sending sparks flying off into space. The female swore to herself silently.
The third ship, on pent up breath, got the kill, and the capacitor went up in flames, ripping a hole into the side of the jammer. The module could now be off-lined and repaired at a station, but by the time that happened, this system would be theirs.
"Recon ships, decloak and fire up the cyno fields, Titan, you know your mark, dreadnaughts support him, all ships warp to designated support zones. Recon ships, once cyno's are down, take on the Tactical Facility orbiting planet 5. Dreadnaughts, your mark is the repair facility around planet 3. Titan, your hit zone is the main docking facilities around planet one. Be careful of the guns, and allow the smaller support ships to focus on the capital starships. We'll take them out with close strikes. Ground teams, you have our clearance, begin your assault on the planetary gun arrays." The personnel strike teams which had slipped in before hand on haulers filled with war barges acknowledged from a long way off, and began moving in on the doomsday weapons mounted on the planets surfaces. They would be taken down from orbit by the tech two planetary bombardment ships made from the old top end battleships. One such ship, a tech 2 maelstrom zipped by her as they rejoined the main fleet mid warp, and the ships slid into their respective squadrons, regrouping, reloading and bursting their health back up. The new tactics developed for close range assault on much bigger more powerful ships seemed to work well, as Klytie found that the majority of her fleet was still intact.
The group slid out of warp, into range of an Erebus titan. The titan immediately lit up its doomsday on one of the dreadnaughts, but because of it's buffer tank, the Ragnarok was able to survive. The Dreadnaughts immediately went into siege mode, beginning too pound on the orbital repair facilities of X-KCD2 III.
"Carriers focus on repping the dreadnaughts, logistics ships, stay with the smaller support groups and try and keep up. All other ships, focus on the smaller caps. Me and Ariel squad will take down the Erebus." All squadrons acknowledged and split, Ariel squads quick vagabonds responding instantly. Klytie did a quick scan of the massive Titan and din't like what she saw. The shields were absolutely massive in themselves, but the armor was even tougher. And the bridge, the quickest way to take down the ship had hardened alloyed armor surrounding it on all sides, with transparent Tritanium for visibility several meters thick. Even still, all it took was one tap in the right place.
Klytie was insane for doing this. And two months ago, before these tactics, she wouldn't have done it. She would have turned and ran. But for once now, she had a chance to play the hero.
Microwarpdrive lit, she hurtled into close strike mode and marked a path straight up the titans verticle face, also lighting up points that the others should hit. It would require a simulatenous strike, which was difficult, but not impossible. She hit the automatic countdown timer, and one zero, they gunned it. Klyties ship propelled her towards her foe at 6 kilometers a second, and then she over heated, moving at eight. The guns were effectively artillery cannons now, with a volley in-proportionate to their size. The first of ariels group smacked their guns into the first battery of forward shield generators, and both ships, amazingly, struck home. Klytie was amazed to see the shields shimmer and then weaken, half of the max shield capacity gone. The second group, true to it's nature, hit home as well. However, the thrid group was unable to make it, the titan realizing what was happening in time, and able to place shots on the first ship. Because of the reduced defense of close support mode, it burst in a single volley, inaccurate as the guns were. The fifth ship met it's end when it flew through a cloud of hostile fighter drones.
Now Klytie had to punch through a third of a titans shields, and through several meters of hardened transparent tritanium. Barrel rolling her ship in a modified version of her original flight path, she brought all five guns to bear, and let rip when she got close. Three shells hit their mark, and the transparent view port cracked. Klytie realized then what was needed, as her rate of fire wouldn't allow her to get in another shot.
She got the required acknowledgment from her crew nearly instantly, and then she herself disabled the collision preventives bound too her ship, allowing her shields armor and hull to slam into whatever they wanted on her command. The pointed nose of the ship would allow her to burrow deep into the hull.
She then pushed her nose towards the titans bulk and into the massive firewall, and then straight through the viewport. The ship flamed and turned around her,t he shields screaming at her, and for one brief moment, she thought she might have made a mistake...
And then, she was out on the toehr side, missing her guns and several engines, but otherwise seemingly intact. She could almost sense her crews sigh of relief. Swiveling the camera drone to look at the titan, she could see vital components exploding internally as the ships computers gave out and let her sensitive subsystems fail. As the ship veered off course and sunk towards the planets surface, a mighty roar rose up from the assembled victorious pilots.
The coms were abuzz with chatter as they told the story of seven brave pilots whom had taken on a titan solo and survived to tell the tail. Other capital ships were falling from the skies as well, and many smaller support ships were running in terror.
And for the first time ever, Klytie took the victory lap as her wounded cruiser, which had downed a ship worth billions of credits and survived, limped to the repair facilities on the titan, her pilot issuing orders to keep the reinforcements at bay and to put up a defensive perimeter, confident her raggedy band of ships could outlast anything in the cosmos.