The CYA Pilot

One of the best things about Eve is flying with other people in small gangs, medium or even large fleets. Heck, even two knuckleheads out in space is better than doing it alone. Having friends is great, being with your buds, your associates, your Corp, your Alliance, whatever or whoever you fly with - Eve is, after all, a social game.

But then there is that one dood. We've all flown with this guy, the one that never manages to get exploded, or caught by a web, or mangled by drones, or on the wrong side of the gate, bubble, station, or anything else you can get on the wrong side of.

And I'm not talking about skill, luck or fortune here. We all know those pilots and there are some. Heck, some fights anyone can get lucky. It happens. Oh no, this is much, much worse than that. These guys are Covering Your Ass (CYA) pilots!  They're doing this on purpose.

It isn't hard to CYA during a gang or fleet. I know how to do it and on occasion I have even done it myself. You hold cloak a little longer at the Gate, letting your mates warp a tiny bit ahead of you. Align a little slower than the others, warp a touch slower or faster, anticipate FC commands to warp off - ever notice there is always at least ONE guy that warps off BEFORE the FC gives the command? I have.

There are a lot of CYA Pilots amongst the top percentages on every Alliance killboard in Eve. Not all of course, but every Alliance has 'em. Probably even PL for all I know. Heck, in some ways, those guys might ALL be considered CYA pilots. Sorta depends on how you look at it, huh?

I'm not calling anyone out specifically. You know who you are. And you have to live with the fact that we know who you are also.  We see what you did there. We're watching. We might not say anything, but we know. Go ahead, save yourself. If that is what is most important to you, be my guest.

I'll tell you something that got me started thinking about this post, it happened last night on a roam. I had a great day yesterday, lots of good fights. Late in the day I joined up on a Tusker roam that was forming and we had a blast. No CYA pilots in our gang. But something happened that made me think of it.

I was in a Drake and we were engaging some Rote Krapelle pilots on the gate. We were maintaining range, picking them off at a good clip and maintaining range. Cat and mouse for a bit. The FC was doing a great job and everyone was working together. But because of what was happening I just knew when the right time for me to warp off was, it wasn't the best time for everyone, but for me it would've been perfect. I would've been slightly ahead, cause the FC didn't give the order for a few more seconds. But I couldn't do it. I stayed and just as the FC gave the order... sure enough they got point on me. I ended up losing the Drake. (12-1 for the day, that's a record I'll take any time!)

The point isn't that I'm special, which I happen to be, but that the moment came. And I let it pass. I'm out in space to fly with my friends, my Corp and the people in my fleet - no matter who they are. When you are in my gang, we are friends. Period. I'm not going to take the easy way out to save, or cover, my own ass.

There are plenty of others out in space that don't see it that way. To be frank, I feel sorry for them. Their killboard might look better than mine, but numbers never tell the whole story.