Your responsibilities as a Rat are essential to the function of the Mischief and what we do. You are the one out in the field and saving the clients, armed with only a Fuel Transfer Limpet Controller and a limited quantity of Fuel Limpets against the incomprehensible vastness of space. The following is a reference and resource to your daily duties as a Rat on rescue.
Remember it's important to leave direct communication with client to dispatch during the case, so client isn't confused about who to pay attention to.
Note that some of the below callouts can also be paired with a minus ( - ) to indicate that the following has not successfully been achieved.
|4j||Informs the Dispatch of your distance in hyperspace jumps from the client's system. (Example: 4 jumps away).|
|...#3, Bob_the_Stranded||Informs the Dispatch which case and client you are referring to. (Example: Case #3, Client named Bob_the_Stranded).|
|Fr+||You have successfully connected with the client as Friends on your specific platform.|
|Wr+||You have accepted and established Wing with the client.|
|Bc+||You can see the client's wing beacon in your system.|
|...100Ls||To be paired with bc+. The client is a particular distance away from you. (Example: 100 light seconds away).|
|Fuel+||You have provided fuel to the client. Rescue complete. (This only applies once you see 'Fuel Transfer Complete' on screen).|
- Does the client have a fuel scoop? (Ask - or better, check the client's modules in your sub-targets menu on the left panel to determine whether he or she is equipped with a fuel scoop).
- Explain how fuel scoops work, and specifically where to find them if the client is not equipped with one.
- Teach the client about the various kinds of scoopable star classes, K-G-B-F-O-A-M (Or, alternatively, 'Oh Be A Fine Girl, Kiss Me'). Be sure to help the client set up the Galaxy Map filter right there so no mistakes are made later. Make sure the client also enables 'APPLY FILTER TO ROUTE', or the entire filter will be useless.
- Teach the client to use the same filtering system to find populated systems that may contain stations, by sorting the map via Government or Economy types. (Even if client does have a fuelscoop)
- Teach the client about the difference between solid and dotted lines along the plotted route. Solid lines indicate that the client will have an adequate amount of fuel to travel along the particular leg of the journey, whereas dotted lines indicate that the client will have run dry by then.
- Teach the client about Economical and Fast route navigation. Economical splits the distance among more jumps, but consumes less fuel. Fast attempts to make maximum use of jump range, but consumes more fuel overall along fewer jumps.
- Ask the client if he or she has any further questions, and offer to escort them to safety. Ensure that the client has enough fuel to last him or her to safety, if the escort offer is declined.
Common Client Mistakes and Issues:
Client in Solo Play:
Space is scary, and so are the other people playing out there. Often times, clients will prefer to engage in solo play to avoid potentially hostile contact with other players. While in Solo Play, the client is unable to send you a Wing Invite. The moment that you are fr+, you can check your comms menu to verify the client's gamemode, under their commander name.
<+sqozilla> Client in Solo.
Client in Mismatched System:
Often, when asked for his or her location, the client may report what is shown in the bottom left targeting panel, rather than checking their navigation menu for the system they are actually in. If the client is mid-travel when he or she has run out of fuel, the bottom left targeting panel is likely to show the name of the next system in the route sequence, and may be reported instead. On fr+, you are able to verify the client's system by referring to your Galaxy Map and finding the friend icon atop his suggested system. On wr+, the client's system will show under his or her wing symbol if in a different system than yourself. Simply inform the Dispatch of the client's actual system.
<+sqozilla> System correction NLTT 48288.
Might also happen that clients misspell system name so much we can't plot with it or recognize it at all. There's a fancy command that often can help, if you can't spot the mistyping yourself: !search <system> which will give you several options that are known similar system names to what you enter. It's usually best if this is used in the public ratchat channel, so we don't have 10 people use it for the same search (it does take a decent amount of resources of our backend to run these nearest-matching searches). See Common Sector/System Names for more easily found mistypes.
Client still Unprepped:
When a client first calls for assistance, we instruct them to power down all modules possible, except for Life Support. In Elite: Dangerous, the more modules are running, the more power the ship requires to run. This in turn means that the ship consumes fuel at a greater rate. By disabling all modules, the client his or her consumption rate, thus allowing what little fuel is left to last longer. This is known as prepping the client. An unprepped client can usually only be identified by the fact that their shields are still operational. On wr+, the three rings surrounding the client's wing symbol will indicate whether his or her shields are disabled or not. Blue, illuminated rings = Powered. Red, dull rings = Unpowered or depleted.
<+sqozilla> Client unprepped
Client in Game:
During code red rescues, in order to preserve his or her remaining emergency oxygen, the client is instructed to log out to the Main Menu. Occasionally, the client will misunderstand or gloss over this instruction, endangering him or herself and the rescue. If operating on a code red rescue, check the client's listing in your comms menu on fr+ to verify that the client is currently at the Main Menu, unless client was otherwise instructed by dispatch.
<+sqozilla> Client in open!
Occasionally, due to network issues or particular in-game anomalies (such as Exclusion Zones!), you will fail to properly instance with the client. You may end up in proximity to the position of the client's beacon, but the client will not actually be there. This can be easily identified by referring to your in-game minimap, showing the little blue icon as a solid box rather than an outlined transparent one. You can simply report this as 'inst-', as shown directly below. This should only be reported after dropping to normal space and seeing this.
Client in the Exclusion Zone of a Star or Planet:
Occasionally, the client will stray rather too close to a celestial object and be forced out of Supercruise into what is known as an Exclusion Zone (EZ). While in an Exclusion Zone, the client will be unreachable via conventional means, such as NAVLOCK drops or manual drops. In regular rescues, it should simply be reported to the Dispatcher that the client is in the EZ. If the client is Code Red, reaching him or her will require a special manoeuvre dubbed lovingly as the Tactical Faceplant, or TFP.
<+sqozilla> Client in EZ.
<+sqozilla> Client in EZ. Attempting TFP. (if CR case)
Client Really Far Away:
While not especially an issue or mistake, it is important to note that for long range rescues (generally those exceeding 1000LY in travel distance), it is more pertinent to report the estimate to the client's system rather than calculate the exact number of jumps needed. Simply give an estimate by dividing the distance with your jump range. For example 5000ly / 45ly range ~ 112 jumps.
<+sqozilla> 5kly, about 112j #3, Bob_the_Stranded.
Code RED Rescues:
If a client has completely depleted his or her fuel reserves and is relying on emergency oxygen, his or her rescue is considered CODE RED. This indicates an increased urgency, as the client will have a limited amount of time before destruction. This time can reach a maximum of 5 to 25 minutes, depending on the quality of the client's Life Support module. The Dispatcher will log the client out to the Main Menu, and then attempt to discern as accurate of a location as possible through varying means.
Once the Dispatcher has satisfactorily established a potential last location for the client, he will position the Rats on the case accordingly. SOP suggests a full team of 3 rats should be assigned to a Code Red Rescue if possible.
While the Rats scramble to get into position, the Dispatcher will instruct the client on how to set a Beacon to Wing, and then invite the Rats to a Wing. Upon achieving your designated position, you should report pos+ (position+) to the Dispatch in the rescue channel. Once all the Rats are in position, the client will be logged in, and attempt to set a Wing Beacon, and add all the Rats to a Wing.
Should the client take longer than necessary to complete the instructed tasks, you must inform your Dispatcher immediately (bc- or wr-) so that appropriate action may be taken.
The rest of the rescue should follow the same, ending with fuel+ on completion.
Wing Man Navlock is a mechanic introduced to the player Wing system that allows players to follow each other easily from system to system, jump to jump, and drop to drop. The Fuel Rats use this system ALWAYS to quickly arrive at and drop on a client's wing beacon.
From the Comms Menu, you can engage Wing Man Navlock, and upon bc+, charge full throttle at the destination beacon. Navlock also helps with client escorts as when your client jumps you just approach his wake and Nav Lock sets and starts your FSD for you.
On rare occasions, Wing Man Navlock will improperly drop you far away from the client. This may be a bug, in which case a Rat Supercruise hop could mitigate the issue, OR a result of the client being stranded in the Exclusion Zone of a celestial body (see issue above).
A Brief Disclaimer About Vernacular and the Lexicon:
Over time, the vernacular of the Mischief has changed, expanded, and warped slightly. Some callouts as shown here are acceptably substituted with others. As an example, 'fuel+' is a commonly substitution for the old 'fueled/ing' or 'refueled/ing' term, and 'wr+' is often substituted for 'wg+'. The purpose of this guide is to provide a basic structure to how a rescue should be conducted, and what issues you may encounter in your career as a Fuel Rat. Be mindful, however, that these are not the only terms acceptable for use.