Trying something different – PVE Nergal

It’s been a while, friends. I have no real excuse other than to say that life has been ‘difficult’ with its demands of late and, to be honest I haven’t really had much to write about.

RL is busy as ever. Work is has been pretty high pressure since returning from the Christmas break, so when I’ve had free time I’m mostly been having a beer and catching up on Discovery and re-watching Voyager from start to finish. I did the same with TNG last year and thoroughly enjoyed it.

In other news, I’ve been spending a lot of time this weekend sorting through my Magic The Gathering collection and readying much of it for sale. I’m a thematic collector of a very specific genre and type of cards, so as you can imagine when opening packs I accumulate a lot of quite expensive cards that I have no investment or collection interest in. It’s been a mammoth task but, I’m getting there.

I have managed to get a little EVE time in, I’ve gotten a few kills too, but in truth my heart hasn’t been in it due to external pressures and nothing other than the kill below has really been blog-worthy. It was a fun fight though, so thanks to Neo Shahni (and also for the loot).

When logging in last week I noted that much of my liquid isk had again ‘vanished’, so I spent most of it rebuilding my coffers with some exploration.

I think I’ve discussed my ‘M.O.’ when wanting to explore in hisec previously (because I never, ever run data or relic sites in wormhole space, especially the sites my alliance is sworn to defend… honestly…). I tend to favour areas with Sansha rat types and concentrate on farming Refuges and Hideaways in the confessor for 3/10 escalations. I sometimes clone to lowsec and look for 5 and 6/10s, but often I prefer the much more relaxed bounce-bounce-bounce type of farming, the sort I can do with a beer in one hand and one eye on Netflix.

The Confessor is massively competitive against your run of the mill Gila in Amarr hisec, for anything 3/10 rated and below. When it comes to 4/10s and Vigils it’s at a disadvantage in terms of the speed it can kill. In truth I’ve never tried a Vigil in one, so I’m speaking hypothetically based on other experiences. However for anything frigate focused, especially where you regularly encounter NPCs at range, a beam confessor is hard to beat for application and fast clearing. Don’t get me wrong, you can run a 4/10 Sansha’s Nation Occupied Mining Colony in it very easily, but don’t think you’ll be setting any speed records. After clearing the first room you’re going to be kiting the overseer for a while until he’s down and putting up with lots of tracking disruption (which in fairness the Confessor copes with very well in sharpshooter mode), then warping out and waiting for de-spawn if you don’t carry an MTU. For the Blood Raider’s Mul-Zatah Monastery, after the first room is down you can normally snipe the target structure in the second room before any of the cruisers can hit you. 70km+ with Aurora is magic.

I should also point out that peak efficacy for the Confessor due to the nature of its weaponary will be against Sansha and Blood Raider rats. Outside Amarr space you’re going to need to consider other options. Aside from the wonderful range the Confessor can hit out to there’s also another consideration – ammo. If you’re farming anomalies in one, you can use T1 crystals all day!

The main advantage for me when using the Confessor, however, concerns my primary quarry – the 3/10 Sansha’s Command Relay Outpost. It can be cleared exceptionally quickly by simply dropping an MTU when landing in the second room, hitting the commander with a few volleys of Aurora and sitting back whilst the loot comes to you. You’ll likely take little to no damage other than from the heavy missile batteries.

I noticed too that the Confessor has had a little CPU nerf… or is it me? It’s been a few months since I got in one, but I may have changed clones and not be seeing the benefits of some implants. Either way I needed to meta the cap booster to get mine to fit. Odd.

Having said all that about the Confessor, this particular story doesn’t involve one at all. It starts with me logging in after downtime, getting into the Confessor and thinking “I can’t be bothered with you today…”. The thought of bouncing around on a Saturday hunting for single anomalies here and there made me feel tired and Saturdays are bad for exploration… hisec his busy, farmers are out in abundance, sites are thin on the ground.

I considered not going into wormhole space and not hacking relic and data sites (*cough*), but that too seemed boring. So, what to do? I needed isk.

Looking through my ship hanger I spotted the Kikimora. I haven’t used it in probably six months and to be honest, despite other’s protestations to the contrary it doesn’t perform as well as the Confessor, at least for me. Next up was the Nergal. Such a beautiful ship. Tough, fast and hard-hitting but, much like the Kikimora when compared with the Confessor, it wasn’t going to compete speed wise for anomaly farming. I also find that being able to split the Confessors guns into two groups helps greatly with mowing frigates down quickly at range.

Then a thought struck me. If I wanted to mix things up a bit and not be bored, why not do something radically different? With Derelik virtually sitting on top of Heimatar, I decided to venture into Minmatar hisec with the Nergal and see what money I could make.

I quickly checked over the specs of the fit I had chosen, a mission crashing fit with a few tweaks, a strong tank but ghastly range even with Mystic. I’d only used this ship before for non-consensual PvP, so it would be interesting to see how it performed in a PvE situation.

From memory, I recalled that anomalies in Minmatar hisec are farmed vigorously due to the Refuges escalating to the 5/10 Angel Red Light District, so with it being a Saturday I wasn’t expecting much of a show. Surprisingly there were quite a few sites around, and a few sites in I got a Domination spawn that dropped a Warp Disruptor worth around 100m. Good start. I continued to burn through Hideaways, Refuges and Dens at a fair pace and picked up four 5/10 escalations, all of which were in null sec. Several Domination spawns and many sites later I felt like I was hitting a bit of a wall, so I started scanning out signatures.

I managed to get a Blue Pill and Chasing The Dragon escalation, both of which petered out after two locations and produced no additional noteworthly loot, however a few systems later I happened upon two 4/10 Angel Occupied Mining Colony sites in the same system. A quick Google search revealed that the site was practically the same as the Sansha 4/10 but, whilst it was clear that the Nergal was a tough cookie, would it cope with the damage output of the second room?

Only one way to find out…

In fairness, if the time to move between targets (not so much of a consideration for most Angel rats as they like to be on top of you) is taken out of consideration, the Nergal performed magnificently! It was super agile, tanked amazingly well and although it took time to chew through the overseer, I’d put it on a par with the Confessor in terms of how quick the site was to complete – maybe even a little slower but still VERY fun to fly. I didn’t even use the assault damage control.

Total loot for the evening came to 552m, so pretty happy with that.

Fly safe o/


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