Friday, October 31, 2014

Greyscale Fawkes' Day

Remember, remember, the fourth of November,The Blue Doughnut treason and plot.I know of no reason the Blue Doughnut treasonShould ever be forgot.

Let’s all take a moment to crack open a beer and give props to our dead coalitions (a bit premature, but here’s hoping!).  Phoebe will drastically limit force projection, reduce the risk of hot drops in low, and make null alliances much more interested in poking through wormholes, all of which will hopefully result in improved content for everyone!

And let’s give a moment’s prayer that CCP acts more swiftly on “blue doughnut” emergence in the future.  I think they’ve got this one right; more of the same, please…

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Setting the Tempo

It’s musical chair time, people!  Phoebe is a week away, and every commentator is in the throes of tracking and predicting what each alliance is / should be doing.  Right now, folks are curious what Black Legion is going to do.  Will they attack the CFC in Fountain or… attack the CFC in Venal?  N3 seems determined to teach the CFC a lesson (I’ll be curious to see how that goes).

A lot of it is simple propaganda and sabre-rattling you’d expect from the null-sec alliances, but it’d be a mistake to assume there’s nothing to learn from this posturing.

And that lesson would be tempo.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

All Along the Watchtower

“All along the watchtower, princes kept the view.  While all the women came and went, barefoot servants too.  Outside in the cold distance, a wildcat did growl.  Two riders were approaching and the wind began to howl.” - The venerable Mr. Hendrix

Oh, how I do love this new six-week release cycle.  No longer do we need to anticipate changes months in advance.  Almost as soon as they’re announced, we’re quickly in the planning process.

Yesterday, I received my first dread, a close-range Naglfar I’ve named toothpick.  It’s a pretty little ship that’s pretty much staying in my hangar in Tenal for now.  I want to bring it to the front lines in the FAZOR (cute name, by the way, to whoever thought of it) deployment, but in my heart I know it’d just have to come on back in two weeks when the madness begins.

And the reason for the impending madness, of course, is Phoebe and the end of force projection.

Friday, October 17, 2014

Let's All Prognosticate!

First off... shame on you, potty mind!  I said "prognosticate".

In the last of my, “What does it all mean?” posts about the Phoebe jump changes and the effects it will have on null-sec, I’m going to indulge in a bit of fortune telling.  I’m going to peer through the veil of time and bring you, dear readers, golden morsels of delightful insight from the future.


That pretty much means I’m gonna make wild guesses about how things are going to be in the final state of the world.  This is wildly convenient for me, since it’s easy to make rock-solid predictions about Change Set #1 in the long-term when Change Sets #2 & #3 will be influencing the game well before these long-term states exist.  So, basically, I have nothing to lose and can’t be proven wrong by talking about a future that won't exist.  Wee!

Yeah, pretty much this is all for fun, so take it with a whole damn salt lick, not just a grain.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Pause. Contemplate. Repeat.

Those of you who read my blog regularly will have noticed that I sort of fell silent just as null-sec started vibrating with ramifications of the jump changes.  I live in null-sec… I should be talking about this, right?

Only… I’m not sure how I feel about this.  Or, rather, I’m not sure which side of me is going to win out in the long-run.  I’m deeply conflicted about the effects these changes will have on null-sec.

The practical side of me recognizes the problem that an apex supercap force (yes, I am using that term, and yes, I do think it’s valid) has on all levels of PvP.  The mere existence of that threat changes the game in very negative ways.  And ultimately, I do believe supercaps need to have a valuable, but limited, purpose.  Cutting the jump range on them is a perfectly valid method of accomplishing that.

But that raises its own issue.  Groups like NC. and PL rely on that supercap strength to hold their space.  When you nerf that force – effectively locking it in place for a long while – you expose them to the problems of blobbing.  And no one wants blobbing to become an apex force again.  I imagine discussions in the CSM about the issue of supercap proliferation and coaltions went something along the lines of, “CFC CSM: Nerf supercaps!”  “N3/PL CSM: Nerf blobs!”  So CCP naturally decided, “Nerf everything!”

After all, that’s what we’re looking at here.  When the original changes came down, there’s a reason the CFC freaked out: making jump bridges cause jump fatigue renders the CFC’s blob capability less effective.  And when CCP modified it to allow jump freighters more range, there’s a reason N3 & PL freaked out: it allows subcaps to be moved more effectively, giving the CFC a bit of an advantage again. I get that now… I didn’t understand that first.

Thursday, October 9, 2014

(Don’t) Play Among the Stars

Or, “Fly me to the moon, ‘cause that’s pretty much all the further we can go.”

I haven’t written about the jump drive changes recently on this blog, but I’ve certainly been actively posting on reddit, the Eve-O forums, and in comments of various fellow bloggers.  I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about these changes, and while my opinions on them really haven’t changed much, I do understand now what my objections, in general, are.

I’m decidedly against these changes, but not for the reasons many have stated.  My objection doesn’t come as much from the play style that’s being sacrificed – jumping capital+ gangs all over the place is a horrible, horrible thing and needs to die a brutal death.  Over on Crossing Zebras, Niden put out an article explaining how wonderful it will be to not have to fear hotdropophobia.  That’s definitely a good effect.

But we can’t confuse the existence of positive outcomes with the appropriateness of a change.  Just because it leads to some positive things doesn’t mean a change is good.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

My Sov Null Solution

In my last post, I spoke about how the Null-Sec Statement was a demonstration of “dogs and cats dancing together” to make a point about the importance of CCP taking this opportunity for a soup-to-nuts change to sov mechanics instead of simply slapping a bandage on it and calling it a day.  I don’t believe CCP has the wiggle room to get it wrong out of the gate and slowly fix it (maybe).  The null-sec membership base is already plummeting.

To be quite honest, I really didn’t expect anyone to take out of the Null-Sec Statement (or my post!) that the “solutions” proposed were complete and sufficient.  I interpreted them as general concerns, not fixes.  Because, you know, they aren’t a complete fix.  Just enacting those three points wouldn’t fix null-sec.

Alice Karjovic called me out in corp TS and thought I was endorsing the statement in full, as a complete and sufficient solution.  Not so, but if a writer is misunderstood, it’s the fault of the writer.   So here’s my list of solutions to the null-sec problem, to be clear.  I talked about this in the context of drawing players from high-sec to null-sec last November.  This time, I’m talking about fixing the mechanics themselves.

Don’t worry.  Scroll down to “Summary” for the TL;DR.