Infamous: Santo TrafficanteNiden
If EVE is about getting kills and building a reputation, it could be argued that few have succeeded as well as the infamous Santo Trafficante. Known far and wide by his appetite for pods he has become part of the lowsec mythos. A boogeyman used to scare young capsuleers into updating their clone, a name synonymous with smartbombs and the loss of expensive implants. Some call him single-minded, others brilliant, but none can deny the accomplishments in his narrow field of gameplay.
He is so well known that people don’t even bother explaining any more, it is simply called out: “Santo in local”, you are expected to know what that means. Those who fall victim to Santo seldom know it’s coming, as they find themselves on the pod express back to their medical clone. His modus operandi is simple but efficient. Using smartbombs and the timely use of a cloak, Santo can often be seen lurking on the outskirts of battles, waiting for the fallen on a gate as they hurry to reship.
I decided I’d separate the man from the myth and see what makes Santo Trafficante get up in the morning. As it turns out, that was harder than I thought. This interview is a bit… weird.
(The interview has been minimally edited for readability)
To a lot of pilots, especially in lowsec, you’ve become a kind of boogeyman. Some people I’ve spoken to jokingly suggested that you’re not even a real person, but rather a ghost or wraith that haunts lowsec. Suffice to say that your name is infamous and downright feared. Is that something you aspire to or care about? How does it feel when you hear your name mentioned from far and wide?
Santo: I’m here to Destroy you mortal ones! Not a single soul will be spared. Many legends and rumours, but one thing is a proven fact, I was sent from the Jove empire (and yes its an EMPIRE, you will see soon when the gates are open) to remind you that there’s only one true king of New Eden.
Tell us about your early days and what set you on the smartbombing, pod-killing path you are on now. What got you into this playstyle?
Santo: After 3000 years of serving in Jove space i was ordered to inflict chaos and havoc onto New Eden, so I had to smuggle myself in there under a new identity and forbid some of my special powers that I so openly used in Jove space. It all started in August of 2011, they had a fresh Minmatar clone for me, i exclusively ordered my servants that the clone must be good looking with polarized sunglasses. In order to keep a low profile and hide my identity i had to start doing some pathetic level 1 missions so I can pretend that I’m poor, and get my ISK the fair way so i can look innocent. However my lust to wreck havoc in the early stages of my new existence was way too much for me to handle. I started roaming around and killing every little New Eden creep in my first ship of choice which was named after my dog, Rifter. Since I’m Jove space Numero Uno Hitman, every ship that I used was a bit of Jove modified and I was winning fights over and over again. I had some friends in an organization called Angel Cartel, and they created a very special ship for me and gave me the prototype, the ship was named after my ex-wife Dramiel. That ship was a complete monster, but it lacked one thing which i had to modify by myself… A CLOAKING DEVICE. I finished many assassination contracts in the Jove Empire and I learned one thing: BE INVISIBLE and SHOW yourself only when you find your target with legs wide open. After nearly an year of blowing away low class Capsuleers around new eden, ransoming them and blowing them away anyway, I realised that the time has come…. I had to… collect enough corpses to create the ultimate biomass stew.
Most of your time seems to be spent alone, hunting pods and lightly armoured frigates, do you ever feel it gets repetitive or lonely? What keeps you going?
Santo: HUH?! I’m highly trained in the art of Jovjitsu and I do what I do best without questioning myself. However, the mind games involved in my work is what kept me training, improving, and pushing the smartbombing meta to its limits. So i can make sure that my targets won’t feel safe even when im logged off. However, there was that little creep that i decided to spare, and he shared my fits to the public and months later i saw every New Eden hitman, thug, low-class criminal collecting carebear biomass with my monstrous creations. I said to myself JOB well done Santo! You created a new movement which led drastic increase in ”Biomass floating in space” cases.
Your success within your niche is legendary, but how often do you find yourself flying in fleets and doing more traditional PVP?
Santo: I never fly alone, i’m always flying with my crew: Boris – a good looking young man with Russian origins and an excellent engineer. Tyler – his origins are from Germany, he is the crew joker/clown. He tells funny jokes and tries to cheer us up when our ship starts bleeding intro structure. Donedy- his origins are from France and he is in charge of the exotic dancers, we just love it when he screams ”WAIT MEEEE” in the next room just before we start watching the new Desperate Spacewifes episode. KJ – he used to be our pilot, but after the crash he forgot to update his clone… which led to some complications and i had to ”promote” him to exotic dancer. Emo – when he was young he got raped by a pony, which didn’t stop him from being the most fierce gunner in our crew.
Everyone knows you favour smartbombs for what you do, but what is your favorite ship to do it in and why?
Santo: Proteus, because it’s *BEEP BEEP* *Jovian language detected trying to analyze* *This Article is about to self destruct in 5…4…3…2..1
Like a shark to blood, you always seem to know when a big fight is happening. Is there anything about your process that you could share with our readers? To what extent do you use alts and other tools to get you your targets of choice?
Santo: I have many servants whom i call ”the shinigamies”, and their eyes are wide open
Of your 18 686 kills, which is your favorite/most interesting and why?
Santo: I was hired to assassinate high priority targets from an organization called Shirak Skunkworks. They were reported to abuse links/drugs and powerful implants smashing the weak Minmatar resistance. The contractor said that I have to extinguish them from Gulmorgod back to their headquarters in Siseide. I contacted one of my agents in that area, and he gave me the intel that concerned me the most. In 2 days and after 12b ISK of losses, Shirak Left Gulmorgod and established back in Siseide.
Honorable mentions: Transmaritanus
Conversely, which was your worst loss and why?
Santo: I don’t lose ships, i Kamikaze them into stations and High security Stargates.
Are you involved with the greater EVE universe in any way, or are you more just focused on what you do? How much weight do you place in the social aspect of EVE?
Santo: You will probably see me in the upcoming Fanfests, Eve is all about the community (AND THE TOOLS CCP!! stop balancing stuff and get more sand in that box!).
If you were to define your EVE experience in one sentence, what would it be?
So there you have it ladies and gentlemen. Whether that was a massive troll, bad RP, or proof Santo is truly crazy is uncertain, but one thing is for certain: The legend lives on and Santo Trafficante remains a cornerstone in the player-made culture of EVE Online. This Twitter account dedicated to tracking his doings should be proof enough 😉