Tuesday 13 January 2015

Circadian Seekers retaliate!


About a month ago, the New Eden cluster was taken by surprise by the sudden appearance of cloaked unidentified structures in alot of systems, along with the mysterious Circadian seekers patrolling those systems, scanning everything they found.
Immediatly, people went into a frenzy, wondering who these strange intruders were, and what they were after! Despite intense investigations & research, from both Arek'Jaalan & independent groups, not much has been revealed about it so far.

One of the more recent obervations made on the Seeker scanning is the odd feature that when a Stargate is scanned, it glows an eerie shade of blue. So far, the reason for this odd behaviour is unknown. Continued research is needed to see if other scanned structures exhibit similar behaviour!

Stargate glowing faintly blue as it is scanned by Seekers, image by PlayerNikita

However, it was rapidly established that the strange structures were impervious to any known weapon & scanning device, making any form of direct research on these structures hard.
On the other hand, the mysterious Circadian Seekers proved to be harmless, capsuleers could engage them at will as the Seeker ships accepted their imminent demise.
As they left nothing interesting behind to analyze, most capsuleers left them alone, allowing the Seekers to scan & analyze anything they found. One feature of their scanning was disturbing however, they were able to locate & scan cloaked ships, a feature no capsuleer in New Eden can do, as they lack that technology!
On the other hand, some capsuleers continue to destroy these Seeker ships en masse. Some did because they were convinced the Seekers were a threat and they wanted to analyze our civilisation the best they could before launching a form of attack. Others just hunted the Seekers for sport, easy targets that didn't fight back.

Seekers retaliate!

We adapt... Progress is inevitable... Are you ready for our future?
Image by Caroline Grace

In a recent announcement: 'Circadian Seekers: DED Advisory', Concord warned for the Seekers, stating they could adapt to situations.
Originally, people argued what Concord meant and how they acquired this information, as the Seeklers seemed to accept their fate of destruction by capsuleers.
However, just a day after the announcement, reports flooded in about Circadian Seeker ships returning fire on their attackers! To top it off, some reports even told of Capsuleers being podded by these Seekers, an unique precedent!

Normally, capsuleers don't get podded by non-capsuleers. This is either due to law enforcement following procedures, or assailants fearing the personal retaliation by these space demi-gods too much. Normal people only live once, but a capsuleer can die as many times as he wants, especially since the announcement that Concord upgraded the Clone Death system!
But these Seekers aren't phased by the horrible fate one awaits for podding a capsuleer! This adds a whole new layer of risk when engaging these Seeker ships...

However, once the dust had cleared up a bit & the battle-reports had been analyzed in further detail, it was revealed there's no immediate need for panic.
So far, there's no confirmed report of a Circadian Seeker ship initiating an attack. All verified reports about Seekers attacking ships has been in response to said ship attacking them.
The Seeker ships don't do much damage, neither do they disrupt the warpdrive of your ship or pod. While a group of Seekers can be a threat to smaller soft ships, they aren't for larger combat ships fitted to engage them. In case you get destroyed by them, there's not much to fear, as the damage they do to your pod is tiny, allowing you plenty of time to warp out.

Do keep this in mind, the Seekers follow your ships in warp! So if you notice you can't win the fight against them, don't just warp to a safe spot! The Seekers will relentlessly pursue their aggressor, until he either leaves system or docks up. They do have a 60 second delay before they begin their chase through warp. Being cloaked won't stop them from following you. However, once they arrive, they won't attack as long as you remain cloaked.
Do keep in mind, undocking too soon or re-entering to soon, will cause the seekers to re-initiate their pursuit!
This relentless dedication to hunt their attackers is unseen in the cluster, so far only capsuleers have been this dedicated to hunt down targets!

As time passes on, more abilities of these evolving Seekers are revealed. More & more folks report that Circadian Seekers call for reinforcements when you eliminate their first group, causing a second wave of better armed Seekers to arrive.
It seems that Seekers have decided to act much stronger against those who jeopardize their mission of scanning everything!
The second wave does increased damage, but not significant enough to be a major threat to larger combat vessels

Capsuleers relying on drones for damage do have to keep a close eye on their drones! A few reports observed that their drones acted very unreliable, constantly switching targets instead of focusing fire on a single ship, despite said drones been given repeated commands to maintain focus fire!
So far, the source of this behaviour is unknown. Could be sleeper having the ability to scramble the target priority list, causing drones to constantly shift target, or could be a flight of drones with faulty target software.
For now, maintain observation when using drones, and attempt to find out if it's a recurring issue when drones engage Sleepers or just something that happens to a select few, indicating the issue is at the drone side. Note: Sentries don't exhibit this erratic behaviour.
In updated news, this drone behaviour is being reported fairly commonly, but oddly doesn't affect all capsuleers using drones against Seekers.

Close up of the Praedormitan missile launcher, the Seeker primary weapon
Image by Caroline Grace

One last note, the Seekers have been observed using two different weapon systems. Their primary weapon is a weak firing missile with good tracking, able to hit all sorts of targets efficiently. This missile is identified as a Praedormitan Missile, dealing Explosive & Kinetic damage only.
Their secondary weapon is a heavy hitting gun but with abysmal tracking, failing to hit frigates & capsules often & having troubles with other small ships. This secondary weapon deals EM & Thermal damage and is optimized for long range engagements against larger ships.
Do note, activating an MWD drive will eliminate this disadvantage, allowing this heavy damage weapon to hit your ship at full strength!
Recently, reports have come in that the Seeker advanced weapons have the ability to ignore POS shielding! This is a worrisome development & displays their technological advantage! No known weapon in our arsenal can ignore a POS shielding....

A warning

In short, a list of the changed Seeker behaviour:

-They defend themselves from attacks
-The Seekers follow the aggressor through warp in order to continue the attack
-They pod capsuleers, unique among non-capsuleer entities
-They possibly can scramble drone target priority lists, making them unreliable in a focus-fire situation (not consistent, but remain cautious when using drones!)
-Seekers call for reinforcements when the first group is eliminated
-They ignore POS shielding! A major display of their technological superiority!

This development, along with Concords announcement that Seekers can learn & adapt to circumstances is worrying. Utmost caution is advised as our actions in Sleeper territory, where the Seekers possibly herald from, is far from friendly towards them.
It is possible, they are attempting to ascertain how much of a threat we are to them & find ways to stop capsuleers raiding the Sleeper sites in the wormhole systems.
It is important to report any odd behaviour you encounter from either Seekers or Sleepers. The best location to do this would be theses thread on the capsuleer discussion forum: Cloaked "Unidentified Structure" mystery & [HOLY COW] Sleepers, Jovians and the 'Other' and 'Caroline's Star, Sansha Activity, unusual things - Compilation'. These threads are followed by people who will investigate the claims & try to connect the dots between all the strangeness & mysteries as of late.

Hopefully, continued research by either Arek'Jaalan or other groups will allow us to establish a more meaningful way to communicate, as currently, our inability to communicate directly will lead to severe aggressive escalation!
Considering how much trouble capsuleers have with the Sleeper drones in wormhole systems, a more aggressive stance of the Sleepers would be a disaster for the New Eden cluster if they choose to attack us in return...

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