I have a confession to make. Ever since I've been back in the game I've done my fair share of solo PvP attempts and my luck has been worse than awful. From dead roams with close to zero traffic in dozens of jumps, to buggy/laggy gameplay playing with visuals and controls, to plain and stupid piloting fail, since my return my kill/death ratio appears stuck in an uncontrolable nose dive. Wanna know how bad? I have no shame so here goes: 1 Punisher killed against 2 Taranii, 2 Rifters, 1 Rupture and 1 Hurricane lost. Yeah... fail, fail, fail, and more fail. Would you like some fail on the side with your fail? Sure, why not!
Part of why I fail is I think I play too much as a gang tackler would. I also think I follow the "real men hull-tank" mentality in a sport where everybody tanks their ships. I don't want to say that most EVE players aren't real men, but it's easy to see that a lot of PvPers fly tanky ships in small gangs to have the slightest advantage. Completely understandable. Another reason for fail is that there is so little traffic these days that I tend to bite off more than I can chew; there are some immensely fail fits out there so course if there is the slightest chance that I can kill say a Hurricane with a Rifter I will take my chance and try it. This has not been ending well lately :)
Another way to end a roam real quick is to fight under your adversary's terms. I learned this from yesterday's experience: don't. I had spotted a Cyclone in Decon and he followed me next door (unpronouncable system, even for a french speaker like me), and as I was in my Hurricane I thought that this could be a good fight. But of course he had buddies flying around in as yet unknown ships. From a safe-ish spot in space I called out the Cyclone for a dual, but instead another player, the corp CEO I think, answered the call. A bit of banter in Local ensued because I obviously wasn't talking to him, but he insisted on giving the fight. I gave up on the banter and said OK, let's meet at Planet 1. Bad decision. We both landed on top of one another and I discovered he was in a Pilgrim. Ending up drained of all cap which shut down my Invul II, DC II, point and MWD. My guns and drones didn't need cap but the Pilgrim had a tough armor tank. I did overheat my guns but in a lag SNAFU only possible with this iteration of the EVE client the overheat button wasn't showing up as being turned on, and yet the red bar of the damaged mods was showing. Seeing this I decided to cut the overheat to preserve my guns for a longer fight, but lo and behold NOW the little button went bright green. I then turned it off, or so I thought. Next thing I knew my guns were all dead. Awesome. It's sad cuz it still took the Pilgrim a while to kill me. Oh and I forgot to mention: no matter how I tried I was stuck with Barrage in my guns. I wanted to switch first to RF EMP to go for the Cyclone, and attempted to switch to RF Plasma when I saw the Pilgrim, but to no avail. I was getting unbelievably stupid messages like "there is no room in your guns" or some shit. Hell I couldn't even simply unload the Barrage! Yes, at some point I was really questioning the reasons for my return.
But you know what? I'm not gonna let the damned stupid buggy-assed game get to me this time. I'll just keep on PvPing, maybe join a group soon. There is a project I have with a fellow Montrealer but if the project takes too long to take off I will simply join someone else who's ready to rock yesterday. I've had a few interesting offers so if my luck doesn't turn I will have to make it turn.
Fly safer than I do... shouldn't be too hard these days!