Sunday, September 28, 2014

The Empyrean Declaration

Today, the leaders of the majority of sov null-sec got together and issued a brief, but poignant statement about the state of sovereignty.  In it, they lay out three key points, which can be easily translated to the following:

Continued null-sec ownership should be based upon utilization of space.  Each null-sec entity is, theoretically, a separate sovereign “nation”, if you will, with its own culture and civilization.  Essentially, they recognize that that a civilization consists of what it does, not what it owns.

Null-sec should be less secure.  By adding NPC space all around them, they’re begging for additional content closer to home.  NPC space can’t be tamed, and the fact that all of these entities signed on to it is telling as to what they and their members want out of the game.

Null-sec systems should be able to sustain a large number of players. Does it make sense that an entire star system can only sustain a handful of players under Dominion mechanics?  Of course not!  It’s important to note that the request wasn’t for more moon minerals in this space, but rather the ability for players to earn isk in this space.

Most importantly, this statement was signed by the leaders of Goonswarm, NC., Nulli Secunda, PL, Brave, Test, FCON, The Bastion, INIT, TNT, Razor (“The Troika” refers to the three elected leaders – including one of my CEOs, Troyd –not a specific character, BTW), CO2, Executive Outcomes, FA, Fweddit, LAWN, SMA, The Kadeshi, Darkness., Pasta, HONOR, and xxDeath.  It was also co-signed by 8 sitting CSM members.

Thursday, September 25, 2014

B0TLRD and Stagnation

A corpmate and I were involved in a discussion about the state of null-sec, and the topic of B0TLRD came up recently.  For those of you who aren’t aware, in a nutshell B0TLRD is an agreement between the CFC and Pandemic Legion that neither will interfere with sov or POS structures of the other in a laundry list of claimed systems, nor camp or otherwise disrupt each others’ rental empires to any great extent (roams are okay, gatecamps are okay, but no cloaky camps that shut down entire systems for hours on end), nor move fleets of a size that could constitute a sov threat.

Effectively B0TLRD removes risk from about 2/3 of the galaxy for the CFC coalition and PL alliance.  Note the phrasing of that… I’ll get to that later.

My corpmate made the following comment:
“Tal I have to disagree with the B0TLRD accords being the source of stagnation [in null-sec].  It's much, MUCH bigger than that.  B0TLORD protects our space, as well as BOT's space.. and that's it.  It keeps both CFC and PL from engaging each other, as well as hotdropping each other in their own space.  It does *NOT* Protect PL's allies (N3 or their renters).”
I suspect a number of people share the same opinion, and on the surface, it seems to be an accurate one.  But I respectfully disagree with it.  B0TLRD is a huge cause of stagnation, and I believe it’s directly responsible for the malaise, unsubs, and migration from sov entities currently affecting null-sec.

Let me explain.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Lessons: Don't Do It All

In case you haven’t heard already, Razor recently deployed to Black Rise to practice our individual pilot skills in a small-gang environment (contrary to propaganda, we have not joined faction warfare – shame on you for believing self-identified propaganda!).  Right now, there are pretty much two areas of known space seeing a lot of action: the Provi/Catch region and the Black Rise area of faction warfare space.  Seeing that there are ~reasons~ the CFC won’t deploy to actually engage in a significant bloc war with N3 and PL (see what I did there?), the next best thing is to get the kind of great fun you can only get from small gang.

So far, we’ve been in Hallanen for about three days and a lot of our pilots have been making some ridiculous mistakes.  Many just aren’t very familiar with low-sec and faction warfare mechanics, and there’s bound to be a bit of a learning curve.  Nto to mention, we’re running smack-dab into the two diverging low-sec metas (cheap ships fit “oddly” and expensive doctrines to fight outnumbered).

It’s been an absolute delight.

Friday, September 12, 2014

Attaining Moderate Wealth

I do read the posts in the Brave Newbies subreddit, even though I feel a little strange posting in it as a non-member.  It’s a great place to find out what different kinds of players thinks about.  A comment made about my How to Fly a Dramiel post suggested that seeding markets and making isk in null is a lot harder than I make it out to be.

I know I’m not space-rich.  For that reason, I’ve never considered writing a “how I made my isk” article.  But, the topic was raised, and I wanted to go through how I made my isk, if only to show that it’s very possible to be comfortable, even without being ground-breaking or particularly smart.  If I can do it, anyone can.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

How to Fly a Dramiel

There are a variety of ways to fit each ship in New Eden, and a lot of them are bad.  In this guide, I’ll show you the most popular way of flying the Dramiel, some of the pitfalls, and some of the considerations you should keep in mind.

What leads me to choose a particular ship for one of these guides?  It’s simple: I see a lot of people flying ridiculous fits that die ignobly.  Just because it’s a pirate frig doesn’t mean it’s good at everything.  Like my How to Fly a Curse and How to Fly a Cynabal guides, there are exceptions to what I put here.  But the vast majority of players will want to start with a more traditional fit before branching off to a fit meant for a very specific situation.

Also, please keep in mind that the setups I’m proposing are for solo or small gang usage.  You should never fly a Dramiel in a large fleet environment.  It’s stupid, and you will die. 

So, let’s jump into it.

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Brain Replacement Program

In a recent reddit comment thread, I hinted that it was only a matter of time before I cite Nietzsche in relation to Eve.  Congrats... we're there.

I love Nietzsche because he forces you to re-evaluate the basic foundation upon which you build constructs about the world.  In Will to Power, Nietzsche explains how the impetus – the driving force behind human creation and motivation – becomes blunted, soft, and idle when when we cease to look for meaning and definition within ourselves and we begin to look for an external source for meaning.  When “What do I feel?” is replaced with “What should I feel?” and “What do I desire?” is replaced with “What should I want?” the individual suffers and, in the process, reduces the species as a whole.

And SRP is a life-denying factor in a sov-null alliance that would send Nietzsche into a boiling rage.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Lessons: Stealing From Your Opponents

It was a good vacation, and it provided me with exactly the relaxation we all need from time to time.  While I was gone, I missed several Razor victories in the Alliance Tournament, though I did get to see the last victory, a couple hours before they were knocked out.  I give all the team members a tremendous amount of credit.  It’s a hard task to put together a solid team, and they managed to win several victories, which is no small feat.

My Internet connection was very weak at the hotel, so I wasn’t able to commit to any strenuous PvP activities, but I did manage a few solo roams between bouts of weekend visitors during the week.  In so doing, I realized an important lesson about improving your flying.

I’ve written before about how you need to surprise your opponents in battle.  But what about when you happen to be the one surprised?