19 April 2009

The Lady of Pain

I think the deity and I have a very special relationship- he makes me hurt so that I know I am not yet dead. The satisfaction one obtains from awaking and feeling a multitude of bruises and abrasions is a odd breed, but I enjoy it greatly. It is rich and filling, and smells of a job well done.

15 April 2009

Brainjuice

Holy crap, they actually put Warren Ellis' first column for Wired UK up on the web!
READ NOW
, PLZ, KTHX, and avoid violation by badgers and angry stoats.

13 April 2009

Whoring oneself

There are few things I hate more than a professor in a class I'm taking making us read one of his own works. I categorically refuse to comment on someone's work in an unequal setting.
Also this guy's a total screwhead. *sigh*

07 April 2009

No bridges included, actually.

My friend just got around to putting up the ModDB site for his senior project, Waterbridge. Give it a look, it's got a lot of potential that has a very good chance of being realized.

01 April 2009

Free is a relative descriptor

Carelessness, more so than anything else in New Eden, is what will kill you.

The mission had started so well, I thought, grabbing my drink off of the bar and finding a table against the wall, in the dark. I was in no mood for companionship right now.
It was a simple one-- Minmatar terrorists were smuggling bioweapons into Khopa, and I was the right man for the job. My agent tossed off the description like it was nothing, just another say for the Ministry of Internal Order. My first clue that everything was going haywire was when the coordinates I had were wrong. Very wrong. Very wrong, in this case, was the business ends of many an autocannon trained on the Foe Hammer, as I exited warp. They posed little threat- six frigates to a cruiser is hardly fair- but I had been compromised, that was for certain.
I should have left right then and there, found something else to do, I though, glumly swirling the beer in its tankard. I uncharitably eyed the bubbles coming to the surface and made a face. Swill, just like everything in this dammed backwater. Six jumps from Amarr itself, and all you get are broken-down systems expanded away from generations ago, backwaters next to the capital of a rotting Empire. My rotting Empire. I took a deep swallow of the beer and tried to think happy thoughts. The bad taste didn't help, though, and my mind wandered back to the mission.
I warped to the coordinates stolen from the computer of a shattered frigate, and my sensors went crazy. The surrounding space was crawling with Minmatar frigates and cruisers, swarming around three identical transports. I cursed and cut my drives. They hadn't noticed me... yet. I shrugged, and kicked everything to full. They'd die like the rest.
Ten sweat-soaked minutes later, I had to acknowledge that they were good. They'd waited until the last second to expose their EW ships, webbing me well within my minimum range, and pounding my shields flat in seconds. My armor repairers were already up and running, though, and they were holding, barely. I powered towards the transports, determined to end this once and for all, deploying my drones. Abruptly, I noticed the blinking red in the bottom of my vision. My armor repairer, inexplicably, was not staving off the damage. In fact, as I watched, the last of my armor crumbled, damage bleeding through to my hull. I was so close to victory, and now this? It was then that I made my fatal mistake. To give myself more capacitor power to run the second repairer, I flipped off the afterburners. Normally, this would be fine- I'd slow slightly, but momentum, distance, and the second armor repairer would keep me safe. Now, though, I was in the midst of a swarm of fifteen angry frigates... two of whom had stasis webifiers locked onto me.
The result was predictable, in hindsight. I slowed to a crawl, and every weapon pointed at me was suddenly hitting. Hard. Even with the second repairer, my armor only lasted about 5 more seconds, giving me just enough time to realize my mistake, try to correct it, and then, in a blind panic, try to warp out. The next thing I knew, my pod was spinning crazily through space, still half-embedded in the wreckage of my cruiser. I sat, watching the Minmatar pick off my now-quiescent drones and close ranks around their last, battered transport. I sat and fumed, cursing my lack of attention and foresight, waiting until I drifted out of sensor range, and then fighting my pod free and jumping for the nearest stargate.
Two hours later, I was back, in my Maller. The Foe Hammer, had been much more advanced, relying on drones and missiles for firepower, a fast, sleek design. My Maller, the Nuke and Pave, a holdover from my early days with the Ministry of War, was not. The Maller was a big, heavy, blunt object, designed to smash enemies from the sky with sheer weight of firepower. It mounted five batteries of lasers and an energy vampire to sap the shields of enemies, feeding its own capacitor at the same time. I had fitted it with 2000 millimeters of the finest titanium plating I could find, an upgraded afterburner, and various other hidden extras. As I jumped in to the system again, I was not smiling. I keyed my comm, general broadcast, letting the old soldier's ice fill my veins: "Minmatar terrorists. This is Rukhato Deveronus of the Ministry of Internal Order. You are violating Amarrian space, and transporting prohibited cargo." The enemy squadron leader came on the com. "Whaddya gonna do about it, chupa?" I smiled, stretching the skin across my face, and keyed the video, leaning in close. "I'm going to cut you from your ships and watch you boil out into space. And then I'll do the same to every man, woman, and child in that transport you're guarding. Last, I'll take the corpses back to my Captain and hang them in the canteen, for target practice." His face paled, and the feed cut.
I was not true to my word. After losing over 60 million ISK worth of equipment, I just wanted what I could salvage from the Foe Hammer, the cargo from the transport, and my payment. And after a pathetically short, brutal fight, I got them all. I had gone to the bar immediately after signing the cargo transfer order for the nerve agents, the rancid taste of negative income fresh in my mouth.
Abruptly, a reflection in my beer signaled a new occupant at the table. My Agent, Hepepta Bis, sat down next to me. "Interesting tactics you show, Rukhato Deveronus." I sat up, silent. He smiled and shook his head. "You served in the war, Rukhato. It shows. The Empress's latest proclamation must not sit well with you." I shrugged. "I doubt it sits well with most." Hepepta Bis shook his head. "No, it does not. I simply wanted to remark... There are so few of us who know the old ways. It is good to see one who still knows how to make the slaves fear him." He smiled again and rose. "The Empire thanks you. We will have need of ruthless men, in due time. You have shown yourself to be among their ranks, and for this, I commend you." He turned, and left the bar, abandoning me to my drink and my conscience.