After several weeks of being under the Imperium hellcamp of M2-XFE, the PAPI coalition decided last evening that they had spent enough time behind bars and made the first real attempt at a breakout. At around 0600 EVE pings rang out across the coalition that “this was the big one”, and a big one it was. Though, in the end, it cost PAPI nearly 2 trillion ISK to extract, this is just a fraction of what was claimed to have been trapped in the system (upwards of 30 trillion ISK). Though these numbers can’t really be confirmed unless by locator agent, 181 Titans left the M2- camp (176 of them intact) with “countless FAX, carriers, and supercarriers” joining them in the escape.
PAPI formed up strong with subcapitals, dreadnaughts, FAX, carriers and supercarriers to save a “tackled Titan”, a guise usually meant to indicate that the operation is of great importance. Subcapitals, carriers, and supercarriers were tasked with shooting the mobile warp disruptors that littered the grid while dreadnaughts were called in waves to shoot Imperium Titans. Throughout the battle, six Imperium Titans were destroyed compared to five from the PAPI side.
The true toll in this battle was dreadnaughts. PAPI lost more than 400 dreadnaughts and that rings to the tune of approximately 1.4 trillion ISK lost (almost 75% of the total destroyed). When we compare this to the losses incurred by the Imperium over the quartet of anchoring Keepstars in NPC Delve, we see PAPI lost about 16% as much as they did through these four battles. This would strongly suggest to me that dreadnaughts, in the age of mineral scarcity, are seen as expendable assets from both sides of the field. The difference being that the Imperium sacrificed their dreadnaughts for about 800 billion ISK in Keepstar kills while PAPI sacrificed theirs for just over 16 trillion ISK worth of Titans escaping (not counting supercarriers or regular capitals).
Obviously, both sides of the conflict are going to call this a victory. One the on hand, the Imperium can claim they easily won the ISK war with a 78.5% efficiency and that they have been consistently winning the M2-XFE hellcamp by killing capitals and supers galore over the last few weeks. However, now that PAPI has a large chunk of their supercapitals back in the hands of the coalition, there is clearly a victory condition there that they hope will pay dividends in the future.
The first opportunity for that to happen will come this Thursday when the final timer of the Imperium’s Keepstar in 1-SMEB expires. This will allow the Keepstar to be destroyed and, if previous timers are any indication, there will be no contest here. As of this writing, the Keepstar remains uncored which, thanks to the finalization of the Quantum Core update, means that it cannot provide tether to the defenders, a very strong defensive mechanic often used in these fights.
The hellcamp in M2-XFE still remains and we will continue to provide updates on this developing situation as we get them.