In this week's Community Spotlight we talk to CMDR Kerenn about the Fuel Rats. Read some AMAZING Fuel Rats stats below...
1 – What exactly do the Fuel Rats do?
Awesome. We do awesome !
But seriously, The Fuel Rats Mischief is a ragtag bunch of commanders with three guiding principles :
- We have Fuel.
- You don't.
- Any Questions ?
Meaning we bring Fuel to people who ask for it. If it sounds simple, it's because it is ! If you ever need fuel, hop on over at fuelrats.org and see for yourself.
I say that but every day we do the following : welcome distressed commanders, reassure them, locate them, keep them safe (by logging out to main menu where you can follow things through and save PRECIOUS oxygen), jump hundreds of light years in a matter of minutes, teach them how to friend someone, create a wing, enable a wing beacon, refuel them, teach them about the different types of landing pads (no, your Clipper won't dock at an outpost), teach them about fuel scoops and scoopable star types (KGB FOAM for everyone !), how to filter the Galmap and plot a route...
We also do training drills for our newest members to make sure they know which button to press at what moment, and train dispatchers to coordinate all that jazz.
We then keep a record of every rescue attempt made to tie-in to our next project, which we will talk about in due time.
Service Above and Beyond Expectations !
P.S. : It doesn't matter if you're Fed, Imp, Ally ; if you indulge in the plays of power, if you're a pirate, a trader, an explorer. We refuel any and every commander that comes to us.
P.P.S. : Due to the nature of our activity (Player with Player) we had some people say "I play Solo it ain't fair !" but... We've got a Private Group for that (cue in obscure forum reference where - was it Michael Brookes who said it ? - a Frontier guy said "Solo is just a Private Group of one person". So.. You know... If you ever run out of fuel in Solo (and don't want to come in open), you know who to call. We can be discreet. No one will know. Shhh, there there, it don't hurt.
P.P.P.S. : I feel I should mention we have Rats from all over the world. Australia, Finland, Sweden, Azerbaidjan, France, Germany, USA, Canada, Mexico, South Africa, Cuba, UK... we've got the galaxy covered in all timezones !
P.P.P.P.S : Oh, and by the way, we do this free of charge.
2 – What is your involvement in the Fuel Rats?
I bring Fuel to stranded pilots. Who knew ? Sorry...
So, everyone enlisted in the roster (accept no substitute !) is involved in the same manner : The Fuel Rats is an anarchic collective, meaning everyone's on the same level and free to act as he sees fit. Yet as each and every Rat represents the Mischief as a whole we make sure to be the best we can be at all times. Although people wanting to take some responsibilities can and will do so (and then be held accountable for everything that ensues).
For example, we have an IRC host and cleaner extraordinaire (Orange_Sheets), a Twitter Duo (Rusticolus & Cowbelle), a Science Team (Domaq and others), some Techies (DukeOfEarl and more) and a Website administration team curating stories and pictures.
Now back to me. I volunteered to represent the Mischief in the Player Group Initiative Forums (soon joined by Cowbelle) and that's pretty much it. I recently finished recording "A Brief History of Fuel and Rats" which I'll publish soon™.
3 - How did the Fuel Rats first get started?
That one is easy ! On December, shortly after the game came out, Commander Surly_Badger flew to Hutton Orbital. Or at least he tried. It did not end well. Contemplating the countdown to his demise, he wondered if there could be any way to transfer fuel from one ship to another.
Cue in 1.3 Beta and the ability to equip Fuel Transfer Controller. And here we are.
4 – What are some of the Fuel Rats’ proudest achievements?
Oh boy, fasten your seatbelts.
Furthest Active Rat : Arrakaij beyond the 65 Kylies line. He brought limpets all the way over there.
Furthest recorded save : Paul Kavinsky & Rusticolus at 31.5 Kylies Core-ward and 4.5 Kylies "Up". It took 48H.
Furthest in-system rescue : 0.33 LY travelled in supercruise (can't find a name, tho)
Longest recorded time exploring saved : Rusticolus helped a pilot who was out for 5 month.
Longest trip worth of data saved : Rockslice saved a pilot that travelled 70 Kylies without trouble.
Closest call : Kerenn, with 00:01 seconds of oxygen remaining.
Fastest response time : Kerenn, with 03:33 between The Signal and the "He's safe !"
More than a few dozen Case Red rescued with under 00:05 seconds of oxygen left.
Operation Neospike : 7 commanders (Domaq, Paul_Kavinsky, Rusticolus, Cpt_Shinobi, Surly_Badger, Anuranium and Muffindrake) work over three (3) days and use more than 540 limpets to help an explorer with a broken fuel scoop travel 3.6 Kylies.
Then two other "mini-neospike" took place : Delvan, Watar, Veryinky going to help someone stranded near a Black Hole 741LY away from the bubble and 8.000Ls in system ; through the Aucocks Region.
Domaq went on to rescue a pilot over 500LY away and escort him back with jumps only 5LY long. They covered 150LY in one sitting until reaching a station with repair capacity.
Most successful Rats : Ravenov & Radlock (over 150 rescues to their name), Kitsune The Fluff, DarDevel, paul kavinsky (over 100 rescues each)
Number of Rescues Operations : over 4000 with more than a 95% success rate.
Number of Rats : 1000 with more than 400 active and a 100 ready at all times.
Number of official cheerleaders : One (Ziggy Stardust)
Most Visited systems : NLTT 48288 & MCC 811
Most illustrious place to refuel someone : Anuranium at Saggitarius A*
Most language spoken in a Rescue : 4 (Kerenn speaking spanish to a brazilian guy who explained to his friend how the australian rat would be of help all the while finnish rat watched with bewilderment as things happened).
5 – How can people get involved with the Fuel Rats?
Simple ! There's a registration page on our website, or you can pop in IRC.
6 – Why do you dedicate so much of your time to the Elite Dangerous community?
We have fuel.
I don't understand your question.
No but seriously, why not ? We do this because the community is worth doing it for. We also do what we do because we can. And because we like that warm, fuzzy feeling of saving someone. It's like smoking (which is bad for your health), you never forget your first limpet in (which is good).
We do it because it makes for AWESOME stories around the campfire, because we can see the sights, because we can honk through systems and make money that way, because of the adrenaline from the RAT RACE, because it gives us a place to belong to and mates to come back to, because it creates a link between people that would otherwise never know each other, because it breathes life into the big void between the stars, because... Damn, mate, there are so many reasons to dedicate our time to this community.
7 – How long have you been playing Elite for?
Me myself and I pre-ordered the Mercenary Edition. I actually learned of it's existence back in Alpha and pondered wether to back it or not, but waited to make sure a release date was announced. Had I known then what I now know, I'd have backed it so hard your ship would take hull damage from it, like those lamp-posts around landing pad (what's up with those, anyway ?)
8 – What’s next for the Fuel Rats?
Someone asking for Fuel.
A fun project we never took the time to see through to the end is collating all our rescues data in a GalMap of "Hot Spots". We'd also like to have dates and a timed progression so it could flare up like a christmas tree. Frontier, please release a stand-alone Galmap.
9 – Do you have anything else you’d like to tell the Elite community about?
The Hardest question ! Er, let me see...
The Fuel Rats : If we can save you, we probably will*
I didn't "ram" him, I "nudged" his thrusters to jump-start them.
Don't forget your Fuel Scoop. No Fuel Scoop ? No Problem. This is fine.
Truth is we have too many slogans. So I'll just end this with a big Shout-Out to the Explorer's Forum, lots of cool people there, mature and all, wicked sense of humor, tight-knit community inside the community.
To the Mischief, I love you all. Of course I do. You know I do.
Also Thanks to Zac, Ed, Brett and the forum moderators for what you do.
Thanks to Frontier and everyone involved : The Artists, the Interns, the cleaning guys, the administrative personnel...
Now disabling Verbose.
Kerenn "Two Jumps" out. (o_o)7