Wednesday, February 25, 2015

What You Don’t Say

Sometimes, the hardest thing to do is to hold your tongue.  There’s always a ‘tomorrow’, and in some situations, responding to someone’s comment, action, or decision can only lead you to places you simply don’t want to go.  Sure, silence means you haven’t proven them wrong, and that contradicts the very point of debate and argumentation.

This week, I wrote and discarded a few blog posts about a number of topics I read, or comments folks made on reddit or EveNews24.  Only after writing them out did I realize I was pretty much saying the same thing again, and that didn’t strike me as particularly helpful to anyone.  So I decided to just hush up and let the topics rest.

But that decision got me thinking about how silly all of that really is when you’re talking about Eve.  The forums have moderators specifically because so many people post without thinking things through carefully.  The external sites that cover Eve all have the full range of commenters, from completely sane to bat-shit crazy.

On the surface, all that vitriol and hostility that pours out of Eve players could strike an outside reader as genuine hostility and hatred.  But Fanfest proves that even sworn enemies on the Internet in-game can sit down and share a drink and a laugh.  So there’s definitely something deeper at work there.

Thursday, February 19, 2015

The Problem with Metas

Fleet compositions are a great thing.  They allow a large group of players to quickly have ships accessible for a variety of purposes.  They allow the logistics team (or person!) to quickly buy, deliver, fit, and contract standardized ships for an alliance’s needs.  They allow players to quickly understand how to fly their ships based on clear direction and guidance.

These “metas” (as they’re often called) allow quick, meaningful participation regardless of the fleet type.  They’re the meat and potatoes of fleet PvP.  And that’s a very good thing.

Unless, of course, you hate the metas.  But let me back up.

Saturday, February 14, 2015

Lessons: Assumptions

To some extent, we all have to make assumptions.  Those assumptions might be as simple as, “The passersby aren’t going to shoot me,” or “Drivers will follow the rules of the road.”  Or, they might be as uncertain as, “I’m going to stand up to this hulking bully, and he’ll back down.”

Now, those are obvious examples.  But in most cases, useful assumptions look exactly like bad ones.  They always look reasonable when we make them, and we can always justify them with some semblance of logic.

The devil of it is… we need to assume certain things.  In fact, we absolutely cannot exist without assuming.  The very fact that we can separate one group of atoms from another and call one “chair” and the other “floor” is an assumption.

In Eve, we estimate the way enemy ships are fitted based on our experience and the likelihood of us being correct.  If you find a Kestrel in a faction warfare site, you’re going to assume he’s light missile fit and will attempt to kite you.  And you’re probably right.

Except for when you’re not, he’s rocket fit, and moves in close to scram you.  I hope you weren’t flying an arty ship…

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Lessons: The Joys of Being Outnumbered

The most basic rule in Eve is that the larger gang wins.  A solo player will eventually be jumped by a gang, a gang by a fleet, a fleet by a capital drop, and a capital drop by PL.

But, on occasion, you can break that rule.  And when it happens, it’s absolutely glorious.

Last Saturday night, I logged in to find a couple of my corpmates flying around lowsec in a pair of Typhoon Fleet Issues, just looking for trouble.  Naturally, I couldn’t resist jumping into Sacrilege and racing after them.

Now, an armor Sacrilege is a somewhat slow beast, but it’s a remarkably resilient ship.  Here’s the fit I was using.

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

I “Confess” to Concern About Assault Frigs for “Svipul” Reasons

After flying the Confessor now for the better part of a month (enough time to train the skill to V) and playing around with the Svipul on Singularity, I feel pretty confident in saying that the tactical destroyers are flexible ships that, even with the same fit, can occupy a variety of roles, albeit not all at the same time.

I actually think the design of these “tdests” is well-balanced.  They’re worthy of the title of T3, but aren’t so overpowered that they make other ships obsolete.

Well, almost all ships.  Looking at the roles of various ship classes, I can see how the tdests can do about 80% to 90% of what they do, the specialists still come out ahead.  Interceptors are faster.  Interdictors can bubble.  Ewar frigs and Recons have great bonuses.  Most other cruisers have better tank.

Monday, February 2, 2015

Svipul, eh? S'il vous plait!

So, I’ve mentioned before how excited I am about the tactical destroyers.  I also appreciate cheeky devs.  And I’m a huge fan of Minmatar ships (Jaguar, Rapier, Sleipnir, SFI, Sabre).  So, naturally, I hate the Svipul.

Naw, I’m just messing with you.  Of course I’m excited.  And naturally the first thing I did was go on Sisi and play around with the Svipul.

For those of you who haven’t been on the Singularity server before, it’s a strange mix between the past and the future.  While CCP does load new features on Sisi first so they and players can try them and identify any bugs and usability issues, Sisi synchronizes each player’s skills, wallet, and assets with Tranquility only every so often.  It’s maddening to see my wallet from a month ago, before I purchased a bunch of T3 cruisers and plexed my accounts for three months each.

I suspect that my first impression of the ship was the same as yours… “My god, it’s ugly.”  It honestly looks like one of those coal barges floating down the river.  But it does fit with the Minmatar “thrown together” look.  Very cunning of the art department at CCP creating a race with ugly ships… Friday afternoons have to be useful for something!

Of course, none of that matters because… vertical, baby!  Let the horizontal ship-lovers have their propulsion mode.  When the ship gets down to business, it goes the way of the Naglfar, and that’s awesome.