These guys are worth a separate post in and of themselves. I've had numerous run-ins with them (well, I visit their home system fairly often) and have had plenty of good fights out of it. On the number of kills? I'm definitely ahead, but with ISK efficiency, they win that hands down, as for the most part they're fielding T1 fit Frigates and Cruisers against me.
The first run-in I had with them, I was out in a Firetail, and Niccolo Machiavilli was out in a Myrmidon. usually, this wasn't a fight I'd have a second thought not taking, but a quick look on his Battleclinic didn't reveal anything impressive, and scanning the belt revealed Hammerhead I drones, so I decided to go for it. Warping into the belt, and quickly locking and approaching... Well, I thought approaching. I had locked through the overview, but had ended up clicking an Asteroid somewhere along the lines, and when I got in range, I hit orbit on that, rather then the Battlecruiser. After correcting my mistake, I went to work dropping his drones, which I did with relative ease, though I had taken some fairly heavy damage by this point between his guns and the drones. As I finished off the last of the drones though, a Drake warped into the belt, and I decided that it was time to try and get out. Sadly, that didn't go so well, and the duct-tape that had been holding the Firetail together fell apart as I tried to get out.
Back in the neighbourhood a few days later, I saw a Covetor on scan as I came in. Not being one to turn away a mining barge, I warped in and went to work. Able to catch it before it warped off, I went to work on it trying to burn it down as fast as possible, knowing that there was a good chance he had backup. Soon enough it was apparent that I wasn't going to do it fast enough, as a Thorax was on scan. I thought about disengaging, but was getting close enough that I decided to overheat everything, and go for the kill instead. It still wasn't enough, as the Thorax landed beside my Firetail and got a point on me as the Covetor kersploded. Having landed a few solid hits as I was finishing the miner, I wasn't at all confident about taking out the Cruiser, and tried to make a break for it, but didn't have the speed to get out of point range before the final shot breached my hull.
The day after that all went down, we had a Repo. roam scheduled, leaving from Iges with h0tsauce scouting systems in front of us in a Comet, he soon enough came across a Vexor in a belt, warping in on it and getting a point, he called us to come and back it up, but before any of us landed, the Vexor was down. Also managing to get thet pod, the rest of the Repo. guys jumped on it and whored the killmail as best they could (I was -1 the entire time, so I had none of it) and tried to ransom the pod. The pilot, that randomguy Utioh, of Fed. Con. wasn't too pleased with that, and said quite boldy that he didn't deal with Pirates, which ended him in a clone vat.
Another day, another solo roam I ended up back in their home system of Espigoure, taking a Thrasher out for the first time, I soon saw Utioh again, along with a Rupture and a Thrasher. I split them with aggression on a gate until I had his Thorax alone and went for it. I burned through his shields like they weren't even there, but had some difficulty with his armor. I was originally thinking about going for the Drake when I had gotten into system, and hadn't changed reloaded after filling the chambers with EMP. Chewing away at his armor, he was making quicker progress through my buffer then I was able to make through his. Hitting structure with him at 1/4 armor, I prayed for a miracle. As he hit half structure though, my ship became a floating pile of wreckage.
I've had a bunch more fights with these guys, but I'll probably continue that next post.
On the skill front, I've finally gotten Hull Upgrades done training, so I'm finally back on training my cruiser guns (and getting Motion Prediction to IV, probably would have been a good thing to get there a while back, that'll finish tonight). I'm around 8 days from having Medium Projectile V finished, and once I've got that done and the specialization to III or IV, it's another 3 day train for Minmatar Cruiser IV, and finally MORE VARIETY!
Even though the Stabber is looked down upon more often then not, I grabbed one with a half-kiting type fit that looks interesting to me. That said, I'm sure I'll be flying Ruptures much more then Stabbers, as they're much more versatile. My shield skills are definitely lacking right now though, so it'll probably be armor tanked Ruptures for the time being at least. We'll have to see what happens in the 12 days or so between now and when I start flying them. I've also grabbed a SFI that was cheap, and already in low-sec about a week ago, I think I grabbed it for 55 mill or so, and I looked today and the cheapest hull locally was up for 80 million, so I'm glad I did that now. I'll definitely be waiting for some better skills before jumping into something that expensive though.