Logbook entry

LongDistanceClara / 09 Nov 3304
The Shenanigans Expedition: Complete! :)

Bit 7:

Absotively posolutely last post till next week, promise! Here endeth the spam and thanks for bearing with! )


After Bit 6 - yeah, quite a lot of people figured it out Good work you guys! Since this is the last leg of the trip, I wanted to give anyone still interested working on it a chance to figure it out (like this is a big deal! ) so the above should give a massive hint! BUT if you have better things to do (which I hope is the case ) - the final post of this trip will go up next week where all will be revealed in a tadaaa-esque fashion.

It's really not going to live up to its billing now.

Well screw it - on with the show! I mentioned this at the end of the last bit but I decided that, since I had a bunch more time than I thought, I'd extend the trip and tack on some more waypoints. Without giving the game away, because of the way I'd set everything up, it meant literally almost three hours of dry eyes staring at tiny drawings, followed by stupid amounts of vector maths, followed by finding systems that matched the galactic coordinates I'd hopefully worked out correctly. And with only a couple of corrections required (miraculously, considering how tired I was!) - boom, sixty or so new waypoints

I strongly suspect that this, coupled with a lot of jumps, checking and rechecking names of systems etc flicked the "SPACE CRAZY" switch and somewhere around mid-afternoon on the first day of this leg, I lost the plot and went full deepspace bananas. I give you exhibit A:

Right - I'd say don't laugh, but a facepalm would be more appropriate. I was about to jump out of this system since, although busy, was fairly "meh", when I noticed; all the big guys in the system had rings - except for C10. And my sleep-deprived brain decided it was in fact the ugly duckling of the system and needed some love. So I decided the perfectly sensible thing to do was fly the fifty k out to scan it (and it alone) before leaving, to make it feel special.

At a certain point, a lobotomy really is the only option. Anthropomorphising gas giants is probably a fairly safe indicator that you should put the keyboard down and step away from the machine.

Stuff it. Onwards - and eventually the end of leg 2. At which point I was pretty dead, so that was a good place to call it quits for the day. The final day of travel and I bumped into another lonely gas giant, only this time it was just the planet and its parent star in the system. Just a non-descript A-class and A.N.Other gas giant, but still looked lovely

I have to admit, I've taken a peek at some of the piccies coming out of beta and I don't want to let any spoilers go for those with their fingers in their ears, but I cannot wait to get my hands on the new shinies and lighting!

The last leg just flew by. I'm gonna head home to the bubble tomorrow, but I'd estimate by the time I'm "wheels down", it'll have been about 250k and change - which really surprises me, since it's been a very relaxing and easy going eight-or-so days (apart from making creaky brain cells do some geometry ). Anyway, I finished up the leg and had a look at all the waypoints on the galmap, all smug - until I noticed one of them was slightly out of position! Cue torrent of swearing until I realised it was actually one of my bookmarked discoveries from ages ago - it was just really close to the end of the expedition.

I don't usually record discoveries - you bump into a lot of shiny out there after all! And I know a LOT of explorers use EDSM to keep track of their stuff and meticulously document their travels, which isn't my kinda thing but I think it's awesome that it's there for those that do! I did used to scribble stuff down on a notepad in the early days of Elite, but now I personally just bumble around, pulling the lever on the one-armed bandit that is Stellar Forge and seeing what it spits out. And when it's something that really drops my jaw, I'll bookmark it. This bookmark was one of those and, if not my favourite, almost certainly top three

It's not particularly rare; it's not even particularly "oh wow!"; but I remember when I first found this - logging in at the end of a really crappy day irl, moping around a bit and then literally the last jump before I logged off, I jumped in and bam - it was just perfectly lined up the moment I dropped out of witchspace and put a stupid grin on my face. I know I'm easily amused, but I absolutely love that every now and then, a computer game can pull that off

Anyway, I made the few jumps over to revisit and snap a piccy.

It wasn't perfectly lined up this time; the system is a B-binary with a black hole almost on the exclusion zone of one of the two stars. Last time, it had been lined up really nicely the moment I dropped in, but this time I couldn't get the other star in shot. Still, pretty fun I think I've seen a few close-orbit black holes, but they're not usually able to lens the distant stars so clearly around the one behind it, so this system never fails to put a smile on my face Although what you can't see in the above pic is the B-class right behind me that teamed up with the black hole to thoroughly burn my butt on the way out!

ANYWAY - a perfect end to the trip! Shenanigans Expedition complete, woohoo! As I say, I'll be heading home now and this is the last leg done and dusted - but not quite the end. There was a very specific reason for this trip and although the explorey bits were great, that wasn't the primary reason. I finished up a LOT quicker than I thought I would - at one point during planning, I really didn't think I'd be able to get it done in time, let alone have a bunch of days to spare! So that gives me time to get some pics and stuff together for the "tadaa!" next week.

Anyhow - little postcard from near the core before I hit the hay tonight Tc all!

Bit 6:


I tried to make these legs a bit more obvious; aaand another successful guesser (gz Cmdr TigonOlogdring!). I suspect quite a few have worked it out by now though, but if not, I'll try and make the next legs super obvious In all honesty, this was going to be the end of the original expedition, but I MASSIVELY underestimated just how fast this one would fly by, even going very casually, so I'm going to try and squeak in a bit more travelling over the next few days to add a bit of "detail"

The last couple of legs weren't particularly exciting, I have to admit, so I was a bit happier to run into some more fun stuff on this section. The theme seemed to be all about rings! I was bumbling along, taking a flying look at the system map as I usually do while the drive spools to see if there was anything bizarro or unusual and this gas giant caught my eye. It wasn't particularly strange, just had a very prominent "eye of jupiter" storm system going on, so I thought I'd nip in for a closer look. Was a LOT more cautious in the asteroids but fortunately this time I could see what I was doing

So rings, rings and more rings. One system in particular was star ring heavy - a bunch with a couple of ringed giants dangling off them;

Since time wasn't an issue I thought "yep ok, will go take a peek" - another Clara geekout warning incoming, save yourself if rl astronomy isn't your thing! I dropped out of supercruise to snap a quick piccie with this giant and the ringed star in the background, but the nice sharp gap between the rings caught my eye;

This is absolutely nothing new of course, everyone sees ring channels all the time! I'd come across a fun one earlier in the day where a moon was orbiting in a channel between rings, but hadn't really been able to get a particularly funky shot. All this nonsensical rambling though is leading me to the Daphnis->Keeler Gap thing.

A lot of E:D folks will probably know about the Cassini Project, the probe that went snooping around Saturn irl a while back and sent some amazing pictures back (if you've not seen the pics of the "polar hexagon" or the vid/audio of Huygen's drop to Titan AND like that sort of thing, I can't recommed a good bit of googling enough, it's pretty awesome stuff!). One of the really cool sets of photos it sent back was of Daphnis, a dinky little moon-ette that scuttles around Saturn's A-ring; as it does so, its gravity causes little ripples in the ring's edge and Cassini was able to take some truly funky pics of it, showing the gravitational perturbation;

Credit for the pic to JPL/Caltech, there's some rather fun gifs/clips that show the sequence of photos out there too!

I know we all see the effects of gravity everyday but for some reason, I just find something really cool about looking at this little "pebble" tugging on the fringe of the ring

RIght, apologies, geek out over! And after all the various hops, skips and jumps, I reached the end of the road. Or at least what was going to be the end of the road; but I've got a lot of time left before the "mysterious" deadline, so I'm going to have to backtrack a little bit up the last leg and then head off up towards the north edge of the galactic core - which unfortunately means a ton of geometry doodads this evening!

So yep - I'll hopefully update before the end of the week, IF I can remember some basic geometry! Catch you in a bit!


Holy. Crap. That was horrible! I can't give too much away, but to those who have figured out the Shenanigans - I wanted to add in some detail but couldn't rely on the original reference doc since trying to "recalibrate" it to get the new data would be damn near impossible, so had to calculate 60 sets of galactic coordinates by hand via some coords-to-pixel reference scales! So after nearly three continuous hours of comprehensive "ugh", I'm now going to spoon my brain back into my ears, dissolve in a bath then sleep coma. But it's all worth it! (I think ). Gn!

Bit 5:

Twins! And a really boring bit of advice for folks new to exploring

Apart from some funky stuff at the end, I really didn't run into that much "holy crap that's awesome!" stuff on this leg, but since I had a bunch of rl stuff on, it was mostly just a-to-b jumping in all fairness. ANYWAY - the Bit 5 Legs:

And a quick "congrats, smartypants!" to Cmdrs Bazjoe, SidewinderSam and Tronguy who have all figured out what I'm up to

A bit of a longer one this - but I'm just continually amazed by how quickly stuff keeps whipping by! Normally I bumble around when out exploring, or if I've got a target in mind, it's usually in a dinky ship with a horrible distance to go. This trip is all very civilised! An hour or two a day, poking around a bit as I go, and if rl starts to get in the way (as it did this weekend) - I can set jump range to ludicrous speed and just zip across the galaxy! Almost feels like cheating sometimes!

So yep, twins, what the hell am I talking about.

(Badpuns'R'Us) I started the first bunch of plots on saturday and began moving back towards the middle of the map, when I ran first into a fairly funky earth-like binary, followed by a binary star pair with matching accessories Little odd, not crazy unusual but as I say, there wasn't a bundle of amazing happening as I crossed the Bubble-Beagle highway and stared heading west, on my way to nipping slightly north of Colonia.

It was mostly just a lot of the usual stuff but did give me time to catch up on some forum reading, discords etc. and from some of the stuff I read, just thought might be worth mentioning a wee thing that I always found a little odd It's a fairly obvious premise of exploring, the whole "eco versus range" thing, so feel free to skip if you're already well aware!

I always see a lot of confusion over this one, which is understandable I guess if you're new to exploring Basically it's the whole "plot eco, discover more systems than you do with fastest plot". On the highways - this would be true IF it was back in the early days; nowadays, given the sheer volume of traffic on the highways coupled with all the weird, wacky and wonderful different types of ships/routes etc, there's no segmentation in jump-range "stepping stones" - it's just a mess of jumped-to systems, since obviously a 10ly difference between two ships, say, is compounded each time you jump. So on the highways, you're not really more likely to find an undiscovered system with a short range ship on any given jump than you would be with a big beastie.

Once you're off the highways, we've explored all of, what, less than the tiniest fraction of 1% of the galaxy? You can play pin-the-tail on the galmap and find something undiscovered, irrespective of range I think where the confusion comes in is this; IF you are travelling from one specific location to another waypoint, yes - you will hit more systems than if you just try and get there fastest. HOWEVER - that's purely a function of the fact that you have visited more systems, it's got nothing to do with it being because people have "stepping stoned" over them. IF in the same time it takes you to go from a to b, Captain Long Legs jumps around in a big loop so that by the time you arrive at point B, they've returned having visited the same number of systems-per-hour that you have, they have the same chance more-or-less of finding a groovy undisovered system that you do. An 80ly jumper will hit exactly the same number of systems in a given time that a 10ly jumper will, since jump rate is governed by fsd cooldown/spool and system load times; it's rather surprising how often ppl don't realise that!

TL:DR - if time isn't a factor, but waypoint to waypoint is - yes, Eco will find you more systems by virtue of the fact you have to do more jumps, which takes longer. If time IS a factor - newp, eco won't be any more beneficial than long range. Pretty obvious when you think about it, but easy to skip over! However pls note - the above is just meant for info - take it or leave it, at the end of the day I'm a HUGE proponent of the "fly how YOU want to fly!" principle - just base it on good stuff first I'll sometimes plot eco myself when I want to explore a small, defined area and don't want to wander too far, so it definitely has its uses! Just not when it comes to the whole "stepping stone" thing.

Boring blurby bit over And then I found a christmas pudding;

I think I'm having Halloween withdrawal, it's not even as if we have Thanksgiving to look forward to over here, so I'm getting a jump on Christmas Anyway - bit of fun, but still not exactly setting me on fire! So I was a bit underwhelmed when I reached the end of the final leg, so much so that I decided to go off sniffing around a local nebula for something fun and fortunately, a nearby chunky black hole was happy to oblige

I can't remember the name of the nebula but it's really close to the end of my final waypoint, about a k or so - there are just so many shiny nebulae around the Colonia area though, it's hard not to find something fun! I was just fortunate to find a black hole near enough to take a cheeky space selfie and get that good old lensing effect in to make up for what was a bit of a drag of a leg!

That having been said - I'm over halfway now and I've had a couple of people guess what I'm up to so far. I'm under no illusions - I realise it's not particularly exciting stuff! Exploration trips are always more interesting to the ppl doing them than the poor guys reading about it! Still, hopefully once I finish, it'll be a bit of fun for everyone here on Inara. I hope!

Until then - Happy 'Sploring!

Bit 4:

It's full of stars!

No kidding Dave, it's space. I didn't bump yesterday's date as it felt a bit spammy, so if anyone is following the shenanigans, I left the previous update un-collapsed below (Bit 3.) Here's today's legs anyway!

So yep - stars! I bumped into a ton of the usual planetary stuff, plus an earth-like at 315 degrees K! I'm all for a bit of warmth (especially considering how utterly miserable the weather is here irl at the moment!) but I can't imagine that being a picnic. Speaking of toasty though - I took a break at the end of the second leg to go poke around the local area and found these guys;

The light bulb on the left is an NC Wolf-Rayet, the one on the right is an O-class star, and so is the distant speck in the middle. I'm going to go amateur-geekout here, fair warning, but I really like these things

Wolfies are super bright, super hot stars irl - a LOT hotter than our relatively chilly sun! They're also pretty big and honking usually and are believed to often be the precursors to the monster supergiants out there. They're relatively rare in comparison to the hundreds of billions of main-sequence stars in the Milky Way - I think it's something like under a thousand that have been found in our galaxy, although with the incredible advances in tech over the last twenty years or so, that number will probably be a lot higher - but yep, pretty rare!

They're normally throwing out a LOT of matter, but there's also a hypothesis that they lose a lot of their mass to a nearby companion if they happen to be in close binary orbit with another big beastie (such as our O-class in the pic above). There's something I've always wanted to see in Elite since day one, which is the Roche-Lobe thing - where the outer edge of a star's matter passes the lagrange point between itself and a super-close binary. Basically, one star sucks matter away from the other I know we've had graphical glitches of smooshed up binaries in Elite, but I'd love to see that whole "Hollywood"-esque visual of matter spiralling off the photosphere, however unrealistic it might appear So for now, I'll just make do with seeing cool stuff like these guys sparkling away out there!

Speaking of sparkling stuff!

Yes, another O-type, sorry But this was kinda fun, it was in a fairly well-travelled area, but hadn't been discovered officially - and was one of those stars that show up on the Galmap as a glowy white cloud. Pretty surprised, since given its location, these are normally already snapped up! And as I've mentioned in various logs before, I'm a total space magpie - I love the quirky, weird planets, the water worlds at insanely high temps, the pyschadelic planet bubblegum gas giants etc - but these stars are always just so incredibly beautiful to me! Can't get enough of them

Weekend ahoy - probably not on a huge amount so I'll stop hammering the logbook boards! Have a great weekend all and don't look into the light, you'll get hypnotised

Bit 3:

Melted brain. Hangovers suck.

(And I realised the way I displayed the waypoints in the graphic yesterday was fairly unhelpful for anyone playing along, so I've adjusted those pics to the new format I've used for the three legs of the journey today. Hopefully a bit easier to see (eventually!) what it is I'm trying to do They're clicky hyperlinks if you need them bigger, although they're Imgur hosted so I know some people may have trouble with those, sorry! )

Well yesterday evening was fun, this morning - not so much So in between unfeasibly large amounts of water, the next section of the trip went by rather painfully! The first two legs were pretty short ones though, so they went by fairly quickly. The third leg however involved waving goodbye to the core and heading off out to the east about seventeen k or so; and seeing as I hadn't run into anything particularly shiny in my "delicate" state, I kinda figured I should probably take my time and poke around a bit more for something fun. Galaxy either wasn't being very obliging or I was still half asleep! I did manage to find a rather feisty Herbig en route though!

It's a bit disco and kinda hard to see, but it had a MASSIVE prominence arcing up out of the photosphere, very cool! I love Herbigs, just because the systems they inhabit are usually pretty crazy, massive strings of protostars all over the place more often than not But even when by themselves, like this guy was, the star itself is pretty cool.

A bit more scooting along the leg and I was out of the galactic bar and the stars were thinning out a little bit, but still no real "eye-opener" prizes yet. I did run into this ringed beastie - literally as it turns out; after snapping this pic, I went into its rings to try and get a nice spooky darkside picture, hoping for a gloomy asteroid or two in picture. Instead I dropped into the pitch black shadow, went into camera mode to line up a shot and BAM - straight into a huge honking ninja rock! Poor ship

And very soon after - end of the leg! Had been a fairly unexciting bunch of jumps which had again flown by a lot quicker than I'm used to - I know I keep going on but I really can't get a handle on the speed these crazy 'new' jump ranges dish out, I massively overbudgeted time on this trip! Anyway, I was still sniffing around for something fun before setting up camp for the night, so I poked around a bit and found this lovely bunch of rings cosy'd up to a fairly massive primary;

Had to take the slf out for a spin of course Anyway - short one today! And I'm sorry for the log spam, one a day is rather a lot for me and I feel a bit antisocial spamming away! I'm actually hoping things slow down a bit or I might just take a day off since I'm rattling through the legs at crazy speed atm, but when I do complete a leg, I want to try and post in a timely fashion, since the whole "project/expedition" has a bit of a timeline to it. It just feels a bit cheeky updating the date, especially since the original post is still on page 1 of the "Other Logbooks" list, so I haven't done that this time, but will for the next one.

Anyhow - tc out there! Day 2 down but a fair few to go yet! Fly fun and for the love of god - stay hydrated!

Bit 2:

Okey dokes, here we go!

Apologies in advance, this one is a bit rushed; didn't expect to be ready to post today and about to dash out to a Halloween shindig, so sat here typing in ridiculous fancy dress So pics and text are a mess!

Anyway - I officially kicked off Shenanigans today, having hiked out from the Bubble yesterday evening. The start point for the expedition was actually near the galactic core so I figured it'd take a wee while, since I wasn't really rushing, poking around and looking for shiny stuff on the way. THAT having been said - for the last little while, I've been flying bizarro ships - vipers, belugas, cobras and scoopless condas - so suddenly being back in a "proper" long legged beastie kinda took me by surprise and I found myself at the start point after just under five hours or travel!

For those who are terminally bored and really have nothing better to do than try and "decipher" this goofy expedition (it's really not going to take a genius! ) - these are the three legs of the first day's travel, with waypoints marked.

The actual bumbling around out here was great Given how crazy fast jumping around is nowadays anyway, plus the fact I was in the core, I didn't have to rush around with my butt on fire and could just take my time, poking around at anything interesting. I came across bundles of the usual stuff, including a rather cool ringed ammonia that was close enough to the L-primary that it had a pretty spooky red glow to it, very apt for halloween! The real find of the day though came pretty early:

Just another earth-like, but this was a REALLY good one; atmo was nice and high oxygen, with low grav, so perfect for a vacation getaway - have to grudgingly admit, may even be better than my other secret hideaway! It was rather toasty though, with a fairly small polar icecap; however low axial tilt and all that so should be possible to find a "sweet spot" somewhere and have a nice little getaway home The skies out here would be amazing at night, right in the core - massive starfields all around!

Onwards! I was rattling through the waypoints way too fast, so off went the fsd booster and no more neutron boosts please! That having been said - not much shiny to be had! Which is a little odd, although every now and then I'd get something funky like this classic coffee bean gas giant

Space maltesers aside, it was pretty quiet for the rest of the Day One Waypoints; I finished the plots with buckets of time to spare, so "job done", I went off and mooched around for the afternoon and pretty soon, bingo - an undiscovered O-type Wolf Rayet. I've come across a bunch of the nitrogen and/or carbon emission ones, but the oxygen ones I tend to find a bit less commonly in Elite, so this was pretty cool to see Although the pic I took from inside the cockpit ended up making me look a bit ghoulish - keeping that halloween theme trucking!

This'll absolutely be nothing new to more experienced explorers, but I often hear a lot of newer explorey types talking about wanting to find the rarer stuff - black holes, neutrons, carbons, wolfies and supergiants? You absolutely can find them a lot closer to home - but if you're willing to pop a few jumps in the navcomp and head out to the area around the core, you'll be unable to move without hitting something shiny It's just so much fun every time I come out here, literally again in one afternoon I tripped over wolves and giants of all shapes and sizes, none "discovered".

And just because something's discovered doesn't make it any less fun imo! I was bumbling around and spotted a rather ominous little orange/green nebula sat squarely in the Zunou starfields, so I swung over to check it out. Nice chunky black hole in the middle, and with the super dense stars of the galactic core in the background, plus the rather gloomy colours of the nebula itself, I felt a little bit like this pic was my poor old Clair de Lune desperately trying to escape its clutches!

Yep, I'm just talking rubbish now! So on that note, off to make more of an ass of myself.

Happy Halloween, and Fly Spooky!

Bit 1:

I have a cunning plan my lord.

Or not I was going to log this Thing under my new character/Inara persona, but this idea was daft enough that I kinda felt I had to resurrect the ghost of Clara So the ship has been named and liveried back to the Clair de Lune, the old Remlok is back on and it's happening, or I'll die of coffee poisoning yet again

Sorry if I'm being a massive drama llama (as usual) but this one is going to be a bit different from my usual aimless wanderings. For starters - I've actually planned a route! For the first time ever in about four years of playing the game, as opposed to my usual "ooh, shiny!" jump jump "ooh more shiny!" jump jump jump. This one took hours and in true idiot-fashion, involved a notepad, a LOT of mapping and honking great spreadsheets (because damn you, limited bookmarks!) and scissors and glue. That's not a metaphor, there are literally a pair of scissors and a gluestick on the desk atm ). I'm really looking forward to this; however I am under the gun a bit, as there's a deadline of a couple of weeks and rl is being a complete pain in the bum as well, so it'll be a tight squeeze!

ANYWAY long story short (too late); I'll post the shenanigans here and update. If you do figure out what this goofy expedition ends up being about (and I know it's hardly Fermat's last theorem!), please don't blab, not that I expect anyone outside the usual loggers to be even vaguely interested!) Aside from there being a sneaky objective in amongst it all, I hope to do some actual "exploring" on the route and fingers crossed, find some shinies out there that I can take some space-selfies with and post here, but will see how time goes.

Tried to get a "departing" cockpit pic, but LDC wasn't playing ball and just looked mopey, so I'm going to claim those are tears of joy at being off out doing stupid things again Looking forward to scribbling the first log though! This feels a bit schizophrenic, after changing character to Miya, my new in-game avatar, but toying with the idea of doing explorey stuff on Clara, and using the other for the "story" thing? Or this might just end up being a one-off, don't know.

I'll shut up now. Fly funky!

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CMDR's logbook

CMDR LongDistanceClara
Explorer / Freelancer
09 Nov 3304
The Shenanigans Expedition: Complete! :)
06 Sep 3304
So Long & Thanks for all the Fish! :D
03 Sep 3304
Race around the Rim: Day 6 and Out :D
28 Aug 3304
Phileas Fogg and I :)
24 Aug 3304
How to Build a Party Bus :)
21 Aug 3304
Wolves, Giants and Whales, Oh My! :)
20 Aug 3304
Falling out of Love & Colonial Whaling
17 Aug 3304
Intergalactic Milestones :)
13 Aug 3304
Planet Bubblegum & Colonial Cruising :)
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