As what has become a routine, [NC] forces deployed Sovereignty Blockade Units in the G-5EN2 system, prompting Providence Bloc to form up and take them down.
Providence Bloc brought 170 pilots in 2 fleets, a Proteus\Legion Strategic Cruiser fleet, estimated at a 100 pilots, and a Goku bomber fleet, around 50 ships strong. Added to that was a regular Stealth Bomber wing.
The fleet raced its way to the G-5EN2 system, where forces belonging to [NC] were already situated on the station, reinforcing it. [NC] brought a 100 pilot fleet, of Tempest Fleet Issue Battleships, with 5 Triage Archon Carriers.
Providence Bloc's forces decided not to engage the [NC] fleet at its own terms, and instead focused their attention on the Sovereignty Blockade Unit deployed on the 9-F0B2 gate. This prompted the [NC] fleet to warp to the gate, getting caught in the interdiction field deployed by Providence Bloc and starting the fight.
The beginning of the battle saw a savage exchange, as Tempest Fleet Issues and Strategic Cruisers were volleyed off one by one. After a while though, things started to go badly for Providence Bloc. A bad call caused both the Goku and the Strategic Cruiser fleet to enter the thick of the [NC] fleet. Though this made tracking hard for the Tempest Fleet Issues, it also made things considerably worse for Providence Bloc, as they were hit by their own bomber wing.
Receiving a full hit from Void bombs, many of the Strategic Cruisers lost their capacitor entirely. Unable to turn on modules or tank, they were mercilessly cut down by the Tempest Fleet Issues, who could still cycle guns as they were not dependent on energy.
Smartbombing Tempest Fleet Issues, specifically fitted to counter Providence Bloc's usage of Stealth Bombers, did a great job of clearing many of Providence Bloc's Goku bombers, effectively cutting down Providence E-war and damage output, as well as removing a serious threat to the [NC] fleet.
Faced with heavy losses and inability to sustain further fighting, Providence Bloc retreated back to their staging, allowing [NC] to continue and reinforce the station, signaling another escalation in the war between the two entities.
Once done, [NC] extracted from the system without further incident.
Video of the Fight from Providence Bloc's Perspective, Courtesy of Mangraa Dementia.
Battle report for the G-5EN2 system can be found here.
Local peaked at 320 pilots at the thick of the fighting, with Time Dilation making an appearance, spiking to 60% at one point, but otherwise having no large noticeable effect. The fight lasted 17 minutes.
Providence Bloc forces suffered the brunt of the losses in this battle, losing 85 ships, for a total damage of 13.6 Bil ISK. [NC] fared much better compared to previous fights, losing 18 ships only, for a total of 5.8 Bil ISK in damages.
Up until this point, Providence Bloc have been handling the conflict quite well, able to stand up against [NC] when it came to sub-capital fleet engagements. Though possibly a temporary setback, the fight did show that [NC] were willing to escalate further, considering what an expensive and powerful doctrine Tempest Fleet Issue is.
The question is, what can Providence Bloc do to counter this new threat, considering the Super Capital umbrella [NC] enjoys and their willingness to use it. I guess once the station exits reinforced mode we shall see their answer.
Special thanks to Mangraa Dementia, of Blue Tridents, Sev3rance, for supplying the video footage.