There are some professions in EVE that we can all readily identify with and aspire to. The industrial mogul pitching the market with sell and buy orders worth billions, the fleet commander barking orders and launching fleets of battleships into the fray or the blood thirsty pirate howling with laughter as another poor victim falls prey to his gang of thieves and bandits. Few though would wish for the duties of the long-range scout.
The scout, a role often seen as so demeaning and tiresome that it often falls to an alt is not a profession renowned for glory or reward. These capsuleers can normally be found ranging far from a Corporations home system alone and isolated. You may notice them relaying intel back on secure Alliance intel channels, or proffering a little snippet of market intel back to the aforementioned industry mogul keen to make a fat profit elsewhere.
During fleet operations the scout will be the very tip of the spear, probing through systems forever at risk of falling into the clutches of an enemy fleet. And yet once the main force engages the scout will be long gone – hunting out the next target or sitting in the depths of space watching silently for enemy reinforcements. There are few kill mails for the scout, few chances to win accolades from his brother pilots. Instead the scout risks his ship at each gate, poised on jumping to activate a microwarp drive or covert ops cloak in a desperate and not infrequently futile attempt to evade death.
Once the dust of battle has dispersed into space the scout of course is typically left far from safety in unfamiliar territory and precious little in the way of back up. Some can be found dropping core scan probes, sifting through the wreckage of a battle for lost spoils or picking away at the locks of a hacking site. Always their eyes will be blood-shot and tired from the near constant need to remain alert, vigilant and ready to drink in the slightest morsel of intelligence.
So the next time your scrolling through your kill tally with satisfaction back slapping with your fellow pilots over another rout of your foes spare a thought for that scout as he thunders through space seeking fresh targets or to warn of new threats.