Friday, March 30, 2012


There's no denying that the future of EVE is in much more turmoil than it has ever been before.  In the past, CCP was willing to let the players define how the game should be played and was generally slow to make changes that would affect entire game play styles.  Only when a mechanic spiraled out of control or a significant amount of publicity was brought to it would it get nerf batted immediately.  However, post-Incarna, it is clear this is no longer the case and it is obvious that CCP's refocus on flying in space also comes with a refocus on outlining player gameplay.

It has become increasingly obvious that CCP intends to make highsec "safer".  Highsec suicide gankers who have long gone without a nerf finally got hit.  They've finally gotten around to taking away insurance payments for suicide gankers.  You can no longer change ships while GCC.  A recent thread on the eve-o forums about Tornados being able to suigank multiple targets in multiple belts before falling to Concord didn't even last a full day before it was locked by none other than CCP Guard.  For the war dec groups, who have long enjoyed a paradise of small gang PVP free of supercap blobs, sov grinding, and blue NAPfests, it appears the writing is on the wall as well.

While many people herald what they think will be the creation of a "safer" highsec.  The real question everyone needs to be asking is what all these highsec PVPers will do when you take away their sandbox.

For starters, recall when PL lost all of their sov and people cheered, completely unaware of what they had released into EVE.

Before Incursions came to EVE, I enjoyed hunting mission runners down.  The crew I rolled with would average maybe 1-2 kills a day over the entire EU TZ.  We were completely happy with this number of kills and didn't really have much desire to do anything else. People started running Incursions, mission runner traffic dried up, and the art of hunting down mission runners met its unexpected end.  Instead of mission runners we turned our eyes towards Jump Freighters.  Then, CCP declared dec-shield and corp hopping tactics legal, causing the pool of targets dried up a little bit more.  Some groups like Moar Tears continued to operate how they did in the past, however, other groups unhappy with the changes decided to use corp hopping tactics to their advantage, creating anywhere from 3-5 corps to dec 4-5 alliances each and corp hop between them as targets presented themselves..  In the past, due to the stigma of ruining your corp history, many people refrained from using this tactic and you really only had Lonetrek Salvage and Scrap or Project Nemesis engaging in this type of warfare, but now its become just as commonplace and abused as dec shielding.

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Wandering thoughts

Man..can you imagine the fires if Mittani had been perma-banned?  With the 30 day slap on the wrist ban, it makes me feel like CCP did it as a way of giving Goon tempers somewhat of a cooldown timer versus if they gave him no ban and preventing the world from exploding if they had perma-banned him.

I think with Mittani being off the CSM, we're going to see a lot more of traditional goon behavior than we have in the past, which is ironic because I was just explaining to someone who recently rejoined the game how TEST is probably closer to original goons are to themselves now that that they've matured as players somewhat.

Not gonna lie, i'm a little sad the Jita interdiction has been pushed back a month.

Also, regarding Mittani's cyberbullying, I recently was pondering a devil's advocate situation.  The issue was that he promoted harassment of a player with known mental instability who was going through a rough time in his life and he advocated that players push him to suicide.  This is a fairly black and white issue, but what about the situations where so-called "white knights" serve to create a positive environment for someone with the same life issues and mental instability as Wiz, thus allowing them to further immerse themselves the game as an escape from reality, while their real life situation falls apart even more.

In my past EVE experiences, i've had directors of corps i've been in become so addicted and buried in the game that they neglected their families, their kids, eventually got divorced, until they're left with nothing but a laptop and a coffee shop internet connection, still logging on.  These people are no less stable than Mister Wiz, and while its probably more difficult to demonize an enabler than someone who is antagonistic, I think the overall thing we need to remember is personal choice.

Obviously Mittani made a bad choice and has to face the consequences, but at the same time, I think people need to be held accountable for their actions as well to some degree.  I understand that life gets difficult at times and while we need to show compassion towards people going through a rough patch, we need to remember that just because we choose to give someone a break, doesn't mean that we are entitled to expect everyone else to and look down on those that do not.  It also means that we need to be responsible to others and not for others, help them without being an enabler.

Wearing your issues on your sleeve and being an asshat when you don't get your way because you're 'special can be just as bad as the person who pushes your buttons in the first place.

I think the biggest problem with the EVE playerbase is that they try to see peoples in-game actions and the responses they have upon the players they interact with in a black and white fashion, when the true reason EVE seperates itself from other MMOs is it's ability to draw out all the shades of grey in between.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Mittani bla bla bla

Seeing this Mittani nonsense everywhere has been pretty annoying.  I'm going to take an official approach of, I don't care.  And i'm going to officially respond by writing a post about it.

Mittani messed up and specifically called out a player and named names.  He apologized, and the player in question didn't kill himself.

CCP didn't go out of business and DUST514 is still planning on being released.

The most annoying part of this?  The overdramaticized polarization of the event.  You either have people that want Mittani's head on a stake or apologists defending him.

More people have probably come closer to considering suicide from being forced to listen to DNS' annoying voice and constant need to hear said voice the past two alliance panels than Mittani being a dick.

But oh no, this guy recently got divorced and was depressed so he used EVE to fill the void created in his life.  Welcome to most of the player base?  That might sound insensitive and this may be a generalization, but I think its safe to say for a lot of people, the amount of EVE time they spend logged in directly relates to how their real life is going.

This post has kind of strayed from the Mittani topic, he crossed a line, i'm not arguing that, but I do think the larger issue is what kind of game EVE tends to be for people.  If you want to blame anyone, blame CCP with their "EVE is real" campaign.  EVE isn't fucking real.  Its a damn video game and people forget that.  Its a video game where you're not guaranteed a fun experience when you log in.  Being space rich in game means absolutely nothing in real life.  The only thing more unhealthy than escaping into a virtual world because real life sucks is expecting other people to change their play style because of your already bad decision.  

If you were playing company baseball and you talked to the other team's captain before the game and asked him to let Geoff from marketing get a home run because he's having a rough time at home, would the other team's captain be an asshole for not allowing this?  No.  Because by doing so would compromise the integrity of the game.  Sure its just a game for fun, but whats the point of playing a game if you're not actually going to play the game because you allow external factors into play.

A lot of people will probably read this and get offended saying that i'm being too emotionally detached, but this is because they're too emotionally involved.

tl;dr EVE may invoke a much broader range of real emotions, but that doesn't change the fact that its a game.  The amount of time you spend playing the game is real, but that decision was yours to make.  Expecting other people change what they do because of your poor decision making is just asinine.

Sunday, March 25, 2012


In the wake of the new crimewatch and war dec system fanfest revealings, I love how many people around the community are claiming that CCP finally listened to "their" idea, when in reality a lot of the changes suggested have been around since the beginning of time.

Remember kids, just because at one point you said to a friend that something should happen, doesn't mean you're the reason it actually happened.

While from a future CSM candidacy meta-gaming standpoint I suppose it makes sense, I still think people like that are stupid.  There's a reason i'm not very apologetic when it comes to violencing internet spaceshipz.

tl;dr If I turn to my friend and say, "man, we really need some rain" and it rains later that day, there's a good chance I wasn't the reason it rained.  Though most people would like to think otherwise.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Morality ramblings

Most recently mister Darius III made a post in followup of Jester's post about sec status gains only going to the person with the final blow.  Of course, this post was made in CnP so any attempt at quality discussion was out the door by the first page.  The thread started off with the usual cast of people agreeing, people saying its not big a deal, and carebear trolling.

While i'm not sure how many of the "PIRAT TEARS DELISHUSH!" posts were legit, I have to say that i've been noticing an increasing trend of carebear entitlement and self-delusion.  First off, I want to start by saying the worst part about these posts is that hardline carebears and "good guys" can't really seem to discern what tears really are.  Maybe its the lack of self-awareness coming from the fact that they have never harvested them themselves, rather they are the source, who knows.  Still, I can't help but think how bad these people are for the game.  They approach consequence in EVE from a RP perspective in that for every crime an appropriate consequence needs to be levied.

To them, it would be perfectly acceptable for someone to go from 0.0 to -5.0 for killing some noob's CNR they brought into lowsec to mission.  Why?  Because to them, if you're going to kill someone's mission ship that took them a month to save up for then you should be forced to spend an entire month seccing back up as punishment.  Obviously, this would be game breaking from many perspectives, but the main point I want to make by bringing up this attitude is that the extreme carebear or carebear roleplayer plays a completely different game than we do.  EVE as an MMO stands apart from others because the burden of the journey falls upon the player.  While to the new player this may seem overwhelming, to older players, this is crux of what makes EVE much more rewarding than any other game I've played.  There is no dungeon finder that automatically teleports you to a plex, nor are there any PVP "zones".  If you want to make ISK, depending on where you go or what you want to do, that is entirely up to you, in decision and responsibility to execute.  The same thing goes for PVP in that depending on what you are feeling like that day, you can find it in any part of New Eden.  Conversely, this also means that you need to be prepared for it, but this is what makes the game unique.

The reason these extreme carebears aren't healthy for the game at least not in the attitude they bring is because they don't understand this.  They would rather rely on game mechanics to protect themselves, than learning to protect themselves through their own devices.  While I understand that not everyone wants to do this, some people just want to log in, carebear a bit, and then logoff, this does not mean that the core foundation of what EVE is should be changed to accommodate.  EVE is NOT that kind of short term gratification game, even the way you train skills is evidence of that.  There is no power leveling.  These kind of players are like someone who plays Gran Turismo 5, but then criticizes the gameplay because the races are too long for casual play and complain about how one mistake can cause you to go from first place to last place.  These kind of players miss the point that the Gran Turismo series is a racing simulator and they can't handle the realities of what this entails and can't understand why they keep losing since they were awesome at Mario Kart.

EVE is a game that punishes stupid.  In fact, it punishes stupid severely at times.  Combined with in-game losses being much more significant, this generates a lot more "rage" and "tears" than most other games.  Most games nowadays barely punish losses.  In Counter-Strike, when you get killed, either by another player's skill or your own stupidity, you have to wait the rest of the round to participate again, however, most games nowadays, this is only a matter of seconds.  In EVE, losing your faction fit CNR in a lowsec mission to pirates could potentially mean you just lost 100 dollars of real life money in the matter of seconds.  If you earned the ISK in game, this could potentially mean you just lost out several weeks worth of work.  Obviously to the victim, this is upsetting and easy for them to classify the aggressors as morally bad people in real life, since they killed you for no reason other than you were in the wrong place at the wrong time, and they felt like it.  The argument always goes that people's true selves show by the decisions they make in EVE, but that argument only makes sense to the people who play EVE as an extension of their real life.  In fact, I would argue that the person who drops 100 dollars in PLEX on a GAME without understanding the reality that they can lose it instantly, is just irresponsible.  

Just because you were just minding your own business doesn't mean that you get a free pass to do whatever you want.  Just because you don't get your way all the time doesn't mean the other person is bad.  Just because you feel self-entitled to be left alone doesn't mean that you are right to expect it or be upset when you don't get your wish, especially in a multiplayer game.

As easy as it is to forget that there's a real person on the other side of the computer monitor, its just as easy to forget that what you see in game are nothing more than just pixels.  

Just because you make like to make other people's ships explode, doesn't mean you're a bad person, nor does picking Bowser in Mario Kart mean you like turtles.

tl;dr Roleplayers are bad for the game in regards to their views on how game mechanics should be.  Extreme carebears are the worst because the only thing they roleplay is being a victim.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Resistance is futile, no, is

Today was really slow so I spent quite a bit of time browsing the forums and came to a conclusion regarding the biggest issue people have with getting pewed in highsec.  Regardless of what they may say or people may think, the issue isn't the fact that they felt violated, the issue is that they really can't do anything to retaliate back.

I remember when my utility alt got smartbombed and podded when I went AFK one night by a -10.0 pilot who  apparently does nothing but that.  As a highsec wardeccer, i'm pretty familiar with highsec war dec mechanics.  Whenever my alt's corp gets decced, I absolutely welcome it because its a free chance to kick some wannabe highsec pvpers in the teeth.  While most people would be upset about this, I welcome it.  Why?  Because in that situation I know how to fight back.  I know all the tricks they'll use against me and probably more.

Except against the negative ten guy, I felt slightly violated.  Why?  Because I knew there was nothing I could do to hit him back.  He would just stay docked until he was ready, warp to an Orca, grab a ship, and go GCC on another poor soul.  The best I could do would be to whore onto his KM, but he was losing the ship anyways so why should he care?

CCP recently nerfed this so you can't swap ships in space if you're GCC.  I don't like this change at all because what it does is create a "safer" EVE.  EVE should never be safe.  Period.  What CCP needs to do instead of dumbing down highsec and make it safer is give the players more options to fight back against griefers.

I was most recently reading a post on CnP where a victim made an open call for people to kill some people who can flipped him.  He pretty much got the usual treatment, open flaming, yadda yadda, but it made me think.  There really isn't much he or anyone can do in that situation other than attempt to bait the can flipper in another mission with a neutral character, except this once again works in favor of the flipper because you can't do anything until you get flipped.  From a time perspective and patience perspective, this means you have to act like you're missioning until he comes into your mission, which could easily be anywhere from a few hours to a few weeks.  Its unrealistic to expect the mission runner to fight back, because lets face it, a lot of times they don't even have the skills needed to put together a decent PVP fit, let alone fly one.

So what do they do?  Hire mercs?  Get scammed by someone who says they'll kill them?  Place a bounty on their head? LOL, freakin please.

None of those options are even remotely constructive or feasible.  They really have absolutely NO options.  Killrights are one thing, but most bears shoot back so they don't get these.  A buff to the merc profession would be fantastic, so that they could offer cheaper contracts, and become more feasible, but instead in their attempt to nerf the "griefers" they've effectively taken mercs out of the picture as well and eliminated another aspect of EVE's beautiful sandbox.

A useful bounty system or way to make bounty hunting feasible would be awesome.  Hell, I would even support an anti-griefer system, so that a group of players willing to camp or put in the time to keep griefers from doing what they do could do something.  But arbitrarily making players safer from their own stupidity is not the answer.  For example suicide gankers, theres nothing you can do to directly combat them because they're protected by game mechanics that favor the aggressor and by the time you can act, its already happened.  Am I saying that game mechanics need to be changed to protect the victim?

Hell no.

I'm saying that "victims" need to be given a means to bring PVP back to the griefer, instead of removing the PVP factor all together.  How happy and important would shitty groups of new players feel if sitting a crappy "defense fleet" in a belt while the rest of their corp mined around them actually afforded the miners some sort of protection against suicide gankers.  It would keep the miners safe and give the new players a feeling of importance, while also adding challenge to the suicide gankers.

Suicide gankers and "griefers" don't do what they do because they don't want to go against people that can't fight back.  They do it because the hoops you have to jump through to find PVP in EVE (2 hr roam with no targets, waiting an hour for a fleet to form up, blue NAPfests, etc.) are just plain ridiculous.  Giving carebears a way to fight back in a meaningful way, will lead to a more meaningful EVE experience for ALL sides.

Its ultimately tragic, because highsec has the potential to be the breeding ground for great player driven conflict based story line without all the problems of the blob or supercapital proliferation.

tl;dr Highsec could be a great place for corporations and alliances to taste a piece of the nullsec drama-pie, without needing a supercap fleet, without needing massive numbers, and without needing political connections.

Instead, CCP is turning it into a risk-free area of boring and vanilla gameplay.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Shift from sanity

I'm noticing a trend towards people wanting more structured and safe gameplay.  A lot of people seem to want highsec to be made safer and less risk averse, war interdiction..bla bla bla  A lot of people seem to be fine with the sec status nerf because pirates need repercussions and it shouldn't be made too easy to sec back up, when in reality it was never easy and people are complaining that it was made harder.

A lot of people have forgotten the game they're playing.

Now before I say lrn2hellokitty or tell people to HTFU, I just want to point out that a lot of people are looking at this the wrong way.  It has nothing to do with the fact that certain styles of gameplay may or may not share the level of risk/reward and everything to do with the sandbox.  I understand that you're upset that you lost your CNR, that you spent 2 weeks to save up and buy, in less than 2 minutes to a canflipper.  I understand the fact that you think that its not "fair" that "risk free" PVP like this is allowed.

But what you don't understand is that when you advocate for these things to be changed, you're not just changing the game of the so-called "griefer" you're changing the game that you play as well.

What sets EVE apart from other games, makes it great, and retains players is the fact that its an unlimited sandbox.  Gameplay is chaotic, unscripted, and non-linear, yet people are slowly pushing for more and more linear gameplay and career path choices in the name of making the game more "user" friendly, when in reality they're just pushing to make it more bland and generic.

A common response when anyone mentions anything is "why don't you just go to nullsec if you want PVP" and I can't eve begin to explain how terrible this statement is.  The beauty of EVE is that if I want to PVP, i'm not limited to just nullsec as a PVP option.  If I want to try lowsec for a bit and decide I don't like it, I can sec back up and move to highsec.  The more you choke off player options for this beautiful game, the closer you become to turning into WoW or every other generic MMO out there.

A few years ago the general player sentiment was that these were the things that made EVE unique, yet for some reason this has begun to change.  Maybe its all the bittervets defending this who unsubbed during the Incarna protests, but whatever it is, unless something changes EVE is on the path to become just another vanilla MMO.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

You're not just stupid, you're wrong. Also, fuck Incursions.

"You see? The tyrannosaur doesn't obey set patterns or park schedules. The essence of Chaos.

It simply deals with unpredictability in complex systems. The shorthand is the Butterfly Effect. A butterfly can flap its wings in Peking and in Central Park you get rain instead of sunshine."

-Dr. Ian Malcolm, Jurassic Park

So last night I was browsing the interbutts, unable to sleep, and came across this gem on reddit.  I've been wanting to rant about this for quite some time, but i've been putting it off because it irritates me that much.  The reddit thread started with the OP asking why CCP hasn't "fixed" Incursions yet.  I'll tell you why.

*puts tinfoil hat on*

CCP hasn't fully recovered from the mass unsubs from last summer and with DUST514 coming out and WoD still moving full steam ahead (Yes, do a google search if you don't believe me) they can't afford to have people un-sub from EVE.

People have gotten used to making 100m+ isk/hr running Incursions and reducing the payouts in any way will make the EVE community rage.  Regardless of whether or not this would actually cause people to quit, judging by how the EVE community reacts to pretty much any change, i'm inclined to believe that there would at least be some rage and CCP is being conservative on this one, especially considering the failure of their past couple expansions to bring in new players and retain old ones.

*takes tinfoil hat off*

You would think that more people within the EVE community would be in uproar regarding the lack of action by CCP regarding Incursions, but EVE mirrors real life in many ways and the mind's ability to perform mental gymnastics to create the illusion of moral ambiguity or straight up denial is no different here.  Lets face it, the people milking tons of ISK from Incursions want to keep milking as much ISK as long as they can even if they know its ultimately bad for the EVE economy.  Just look at the outrage when BrIcK SqUaD was "griefing" Incursions by preventing their farming by killing the mothership right as it spawned, as was originally intended by CCP.

Inflation is normal when its at a steady rate, but when inflation in EVE jumps to a whopping 10% petr month theres something seriously wrong.  Look at the price for just about any item in the game and look at the yearly trend and its pretty obvious the direct effect Incursions have had on inflation in EVE.  Many people argue that Incursions aren't pumping as much ISK into the game as people think they are and the reason for inflation is largely due to other factors, and i'm inclined to agree and disagree with this statement.

Someone in the reddit thread posted this.
"Incursions are not as big as you think they are.
This is about 2 weeks old:
From CCP_Diagoras Twitter: * "Another Sunday passed; so yesterday in EVE: 11.73tn market transactions, 1,123,350 individual transactions."
"More totals for yesterday: 1.292tn bounties, 368.9bn Incursion payouts.
"ISK earnt from NPC bounties in Feb: 32,083,329,999,805 ISK"
"Mission rewards paid out in Feb: 2,470,815,985,076 ISK. Mission bonuses: 2,346,410,541,970 ISK."
"8,566,015,400,900 ISK paid out in Incursion rewards in February."
So bounty payouts are still about 4 times as much as Incursion payouts. Also remember that the people running Incursions would usually have another way to fund whatever they are doing (missions/ratting)."
Its wrong and is a perfect example of how people think its easy to lie with statistics, when in reality most people just aren't smart enough to decipher what many statistics really mean and the above poster attempts to prove his point by saying nothing of value.

Rounding the numbers to make them easier, roughly 37 trillion ISK was made from NPC bounties, mission rewards, and mission bonuses.  8.5 trillion ISK was made from Incursion rewards.  Why does this mean nothing to us at first glance and why does the above poster say absolutely nothing of value?  Because all he does is tells us is the ratio of ISK made via incursions compared to the ISK made not through Incursions.  In fact, he disproves his point in his own statement, because Incursions representing 1/5th of all bounty/reward payouts is not an insignificant percentage.  It would actually be useful if we had data telling us how much ISK was generated from missions/bounties before Incursions were introduced, but sadly we don't get this.

We can guess to some degree how much extra ISK Incursions are dumping into the game by assuming that if everyone who is making ISK running Incursions would have still engaged in some sort of money making activity anyways.  The poster even points this out, but he fails to mention that they would generally only be making half the isk/hr doing missions or ratting.  Assuming that everyone who runs Incursions at 100m isk/hr would have spent the same time missioning or ratting, making an average of 50m isk/hr that means that means that Incursions dumped an extra 4 trillion into the EVE economy for Februrary.  Thats almost 10% more ISK being introduced to New Eden each month because of Incursions.  This is also ignoring the fact that for shiny fleets 150m isk/hr is not uncommon.

Now I have to stop to point out that these are all rough numbers and without pre-Incursion data, these are all rough estimates, but reading between the lines paints an even more grim picture.

Start pondering the fact that many of these Incursion runners used to make ISK doing things other than missions and ratting so the true number is probably a bit higher...

Start pondering the fact that many of these Incursion runners used to mine, but quit mining to run Incursions because they make so much more ISK/hr.  Now in addition to a huge ISK faucet, there are fewer minerals being supplied so demand increases...

Start pondering the fact that some of the Incursion runners used to run sleeper sites or mine ABC, but quit because the logistics behind Incursions are easier...

Start pondering the fact that people generally care less about market manipulations because they can in their minds "afford not to care" so now when an item gets manipulated the price point does a better job of sticking because the price point that people will psychologically accept has changed...

Start pondering the fact that many manufacturers now find that Incursions are better paying and easier to do, pushing demand up even more.  I know someone that recently sold their T2 BPO because compared to the hassle of buying up materials, moving said minerals, and keeping spreadsheets updated, Incursions are just that much easier.

The combination of all the above factors are why Incursions have had such a broad reaching impact on the EVE economy and why people who only look at the ISK faucet impact of Incursions have a hard time accepting this.  Anyone who disagrees needs to go rewatch the movie Jurassic Park.  CCP really should consider hiring a chaos theorist instead of just an economist.

tl;dr Jeff Goldbum should be hired by CCP because he would make awesome video dev blogs.  Also, you can't just look at the impact that Incursions have as an ISK faucet to evaluate their impact.  For example, miners running Incursion sites instead of running mining fleets is also going to impact mineral prices.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Stealth nerfs and game complexity

While i'm all for iteration(whatever that means), a lot of the changes CCP has been making lately make no sense at all. Jester recently wrote an article about the many stealth nerfs that CCP continually implements because its a topic that doesn't get much attention and more disturbingly contributes to the increasing complexity  to the game that is EVE.

You wanna know the worst part about these changes?  Jester's article while well written even missed out on some nuances on the game mechanic, such as how sec gains are actually shared IF you're in a fleet.  Though, to Jester's credit, this is actually what just about everyone i've talked to lately about this seems to think and the only reason I know otherwise is because a lot of the people I fly with enjoy figuring out game mechanics as much as they do making pixels explode.


Regarding the NPE one of the most maddening thing is trying to find information thats current about game mechanics.  If its a major game mechanic then its pretty easy to find, but if its something slightly more obscure or you want to find out a detail on a variation of a known game mechanic then good fucking luck.  Part of the reason this is so difficult is because CCP continually insists on making stealth nerfs or changes that never make it into any patch note.  The reason that this is a problem is pretty obvious, which is that now if you're searching for information on a specific game mechanic not only are you not likely to find any information about it, any information you do find is old and no longer valid.  Additionally, since no one really knows exactly how they changed it, people are even less likely to figure out what the new mechanics are because they don't even have a direction to look.

Probably the most recent "major' stealth nerf was the Orca one, where they nerfed the ability of the Orca to serve as a mobile station for highsec gankers using that tactic.  Except it was never in the patch notes, so now the industrial guy has one less thing he understands about his most expensive ship because he has never had any interest in doing highsec ganks and doesn't read the forums.

In this case, it probably doesn't affect him, but how many other stealth changes to other game mechanics have gotten someone killed or made the game that much more confusing?  How often do situations happen where several stealth changes eventually act upon each other to form an even bigger and more confusing black box than they would have beforehand?

This is why I supported Widders for CSM, because as a frequent bug reporter and "griefer" that understands more about game mechanics than just about anyone out there, he actually understood some of the real reasons behind game complexity and some of the real issues that the NPE is such shit.

If CCP is going to continue to rely on the player community to write their wikis and game mechanic writeups, the very least they could do is make this easier for them instead of more difficult.

tldr:  Its disturbing how many stealth nerfs and changes take place that people never realize.  Its even more disturbing that these stealth nerfs and changes add more to game complexity than people realize.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

War decs as an ISK sink

With CCP Diagoras twittering all kinds of random stats, I wonder the amount that war decs represent as an ISK sink.  Anyone wanna ask him  for me? :)  I know that as an alliance, Moar Tears spends anywhere from 1.5-2.5b a week to put in war decs and when we were in 0rphanage it was about the same.  Over time this is not an insignificant chunk.

War decs, like skillbook sales, represent one of the few "true" ISK sinks in the game.  As I learned from a corpmate the other day, blowing up ships does not actually count as an ISK sink, and actually generates ISK through insurance payments and salvage.  Even though the ship and modules are destroyed, the ISK paid to the miners for the ship still remains in the game.  Neat.

tldr:  Am I the only one that absolutely hates Hans Jaegerblitzen's character portrait?  

Friday, March 2, 2012

Blurring the lines

Whenever i'm flying around New Eden, I always pay attention to the traffic.  I usually don't pay a ton of active attention to it, but if I see a freighter flying past, I look at what alliance it is and look at the pipe its traveling down.  If I see a large gang flying through empire, I take a look at what alliance/corp they are, if they're war dec'd, and ponder where they could be headed.

I recently saw a rather large shield gang near Jita.  I quickly checked their alliance descriptions, but couldn't really find where they were primarily based.  No war decs or faction warfare, had a handful of WH and nullsec kills, but not really much lowsec.  I bookmarked a few of them and will check killboards later to see where their gang went splat, but I was mostly curious what kind of corp they were to be putting a gang together like that and flying through empire, especially since it was complete with Scimitars, Lachesis, and Huginns.  Definitely not the typical fleet flavor you see and even more confounding when you look at their alliances complete lack of kills.

Anyways, this led me to take a look into their individual corp descriptions and I started noticing a common theme, which was "anti-piracy" and brings me to my next point.

I don't understand groups that advocate "anti-piracy" and still choose to PVP.  As far as i'm concerned, they're the same thing.  Sure, the romanticized view is that when you take a gang out you're fighting people that are willing to PVP so its somehow consensual, but that naivety quickly breaks down when your nullsec roam comes across someone hauling stuff and you quickly vape them.  How is that any different other than the security status of the system?  Basically, what you're saying is that its ok to shoot targets when you're in hunting mode, but if you come across something and you're not on an alliance sanctioned PVP OP, then its piracy.

An alliance mate I was talking to about this suggested that they think they're making a "space difference" as he put it and I find it hard not to agree.  Sure a lot of people may hate people whose goal is to make ships explode everytime they log on, but at least there's no illusion as to why were here.  This is the problem I also have with CVA's NRDS policy, is that while it looks good on paper and a neat little concept, the reality of it is that its arbitrarily enforced.  There are many documented cases of faked logs showing false aggression and flat out lies, to get someone on the KoS list.

I realize I might be getting a little too hung up on the label of "piracy" as surely its meant in the context of lowsec, and it works when the group doesn't PVP, but it just gets downright absurd when that same group goes on lowsec roams only to shoot at pirates and refuses to shoot at non-flashy gangs until they aggress first, even though they're probably there to pew in the first place.

The truth is, EVE is a PVP arena regardless of the security status, people just don't realize this.  I'm not saying this because this is how I play EVE, i'm saying this because its the truth.  Compare EVE to Battlefield 3, with highsec being the spawn point.  Sure you're "safe", but you can still be killed.  Anti-piracy rules and the concept of consensual and non-consensual PVP would be the equivalent of creating server rules where if you see someone running to get into a vehicle you're not allowed to shoot them until they get in, or you are not allowed to shoot people in the back, THEN going onto other servers and complaining that the rules are different.  Maybe a better analogy would be someone that complains about the morality of prostitutes, but then goes to a strip club and defends the girls by saying that lots of them have "goals" and its only a temporary thing for them, pure denial.


tldr: People that follow anti-piracy rules but then choose to PVP other times and claim that its "different" are in denial.  Making a "space difference", LOL.

Downtime = Deathtime

Myth:  Doing logistics before and after downtime is less risky because there aren't as many people logged onto the server.

Reality: Doing logistics around downtime is no safer than any other time and has more to do with what time zone the people in your area are located in.  There aren't as many carebears logged in, true.  You're less likely to get caught by roaming blobs as well, but PVPers wait until the server goes down and are often the first ones to log back in after the servers go up...why?  Because people think that downtime = safetime.