Chaos

Linked in with my previous post, Gevlon very publically makes a stand for what he believes in. I don’t view him as representing the majority in game, but I generally find interest in his posts.

He has a very dim view of the impact Citadels will have on the High Sec market and wealth distribution in game, and has announced he will stop playing in a month.

http://greedygoblin.blogspot.com.au/2016/03/i-need-suggestion-for-new-mmo-and-you.html

The figures he quotes about possible tax incomes are horrendous, and I know it is plausible that a handful of powerful entities will anchor a new Jita, new Amarr, new Rens and what not next door to these traditional trading hubs. I just truly can’t believe a noteworthy number of risk averse Carebears will actually move to use them exclusively.

Even if there is some unexpected rush of enthusiasm, I think it is inevitable that it will end up costing players much more than the few percent of taxes that they might save. I cannot see my risk averse Carebear brethren making Gevlon’s nightmare come true.

If Gevlon does finish up his EVE experiment, lots of respect to him for what he has achieved. He has made lots of players think about topics in different ways, and generated a lot of in game content. I think he’s been good for the game with the sense of chaos he brings to it.

If his version of the future does hold true, I agree it won’t be good for the game. I would expect however it could be addressed by changes in tax rates.

What isn’t so easy to change – as Gevlon has been trying, is the entrenched stability of the few in game super powers. At the moment they make the game less dynamic and nullify the notion of a true sandpit.

I think the outcome of the current anti Imperium/CFC war will be more telling on the future of the game than Citadels. Will it grind down, destroy and reshape the alliances of old, and bring forth a new landscape? Or will it fizzle out quickly as some of the major players are again paid off or walk away as soon as they get the hint of hard work or boredom?

I fear from the overzealous propaganda and the rush for big battles such as todays Easter War in J-GAMP and M-OEE8, that the so called Allies are hoping for a headshot, and are not likely to be in this for the long haul.  I don’t see the Imperium as dying from a headshot.  Dozens of them maybe, dozens and dozens, but do their enemies have that much stamina and ammunition?

Toxicity

I felt a bit down reading Sugar Kyle’s most recent blog post here –

http://www.lowseclifestyle.com/2016/03/hi-there.html

I don’t know the full details, but it is sad seeing another person who I respect having their passion for EVE so damaged by parts of its community.

I read most of what CCP announce or comment on, I follow a hell of a lot of blogs, the EVE related news sites, keep half an eye on my twitter feed, a number of YouTubers, various Facebook groups and I come and go from the main forums. I think I am a relatively informed player.

If I was to describe how I interact with the EVE community I would use the word cowardly.

When I find something toxic I will occasionally blog about it – but far more often I will just stop reading. I like a proper debate. I genuinely like if someone is able to change my mind on a topic – as I think that improves me as a person. However, you rarely get proper debates within the EVE community – you either get an echo chamber or noxious conflict. I just don’t want to put up with too much of that from what is meant to be a source of entertainment.

Yes, I express an opinion in this blog, but I don’t go out of my way to promote it, defend it, or champion it. As such I am thankful for the likes of Sugar and those who have gone before her – exposing themselves to the full venom of the community to fight the good fight, and help steer the game for the good of the silent majority. I know that comes at a personal cost for them.

BB73 – The Wide World of EVE

BB73With EVE, Valkyrie, Gunjack and the sometime in future DUST replacement, is there any other area CCP should be looking to expand the EVE universe into?

I am not sure it is appropriate to ask this question yet. EVE will be turning 13 in May this year. Across all those years CCP has only really managed to expand the EVE universe into an about to be shut down and barely successful console first person shooter, DUST 514.

If you were feeling generous you might also add walking in Captain Quarters. That is however probably best left unsaid.

Sure Gunjack and Valkyrie will soon be in the hands of early VR adopters. It might bring CCP great success. But that requires enough people to buy into the hardware, and for CCP to get the games just right for this new and untested market. It seems premature to classify these as a real part of the EVE universe just yet.

The same goes for the DUST 514 PC replacement – which we have sparse details on.

While I commend CCP for trying to ensure they are not reliant on just one income stream, they have spent a lot of time (and I expect money) on expanding the EVE universe, but so far without notable success.

At this point I don’t think CCP should be looking to add any new games – I expect they will be too busy focusing on juggling their current developments.

The only “out of EVE Client” work I would like to see at the moment is a portal app for iOS and then Android. Allow us to read and send EVE Mails, update market orders, and even do Planetary Interaction on a tablet. Give us the option to keep connected to the game between running the full client.  That’s not really an answer to the BB question – but I didn’t just want to write “No”, and leave it at that.

Other Blog Banter posts on this topic can be found here

856 Days

It has been a busy couple of days in EVE, between PVE, revisiting ship fittings and asset sales. I figured I would round this off with some time in Null Sec. I started with the usual scan down of the constellation using my Alt. He currently does this in a Falcon, which might leave the locals uneasy.

To my surprise I actually found a Null to Hi-Sec Wormhole. The other side was to the ass end of the known Empire, but beggars can’t be choosers. I clone jumped my main down and basically started the process of moving out loot and a pile of combat ships I picked up off contract but which I decided I really wasn’t going to use.

There were a few of the local alliance members around, including one trying to PVE. He seemed to get spooked as I made my way through the system with my second PVP ship and left. Otherwise it was relatively quiet.

It is however never safe following a predictable pattern – and sure enough when moving my third or fourth ship out of station I had a run in with one of the locals.

I did the normal check – 3 people in local, all of them in station.  I assume it is because I play EVE from Australia and response times are slower, but once again between the time I clicked on undock and the overview loaded another player had undocked and activated a ship module.

In this case the overview was blank for a while, then the overview windows loaded but the image remained blank. I could see someone had undocked with me – so the first thing I did was selected my out gate and clicked on warp. The screen then loaded and I had a strange blue or green cyno type thing next to me, which I assumed was a jump field generator.

Sure enough this deposited me 100km off the station with a Pontifex. Given I was in a PVP fit Stabber and with nothing else to do, I figured this was an appropriate time to fight. I started by trying to lock the Command Destroyer, only to find myself almost immediately warping off to my out gate. Rather disappointingly it seems being jumped did not cancel my warp.

Thinking no worse of the local (who as I have remarked don’t seem particularly blood thirsty unless you make yourself an obvious target), I continued with my ship extractions. (The pilot had logged or moved on.)

The next ship was a Svipul. As I landed on my out Wormhole I found a Probe sitting on it with a 6-year-old toon. I waited for them to jump back to Empire space or Warp off, but they seemed AFK. I targeted them – but they still did not move, so fired one volley of artillery and destroyed the ship. The pod then followed.

(Meanwhile in my Captain’s quarters the housekeeper updated the “Days since the last unnecessary killing of another player” sign, crossing out 856 and putting in 0.)

Did I suddenly see the red mist of the killer instinct? After all these years am I about to become fascinated with PVP? No – my only thought in both encounters was a mild interest to see what the kill marks looked like. For the life of me however I couldn’t find it on the Svipul. Maybe I did something wrong?

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I finished my session off by moving a Stratios into Null, which I had been wanting to do for a while, along with some of the ship fittings I had been missing. I still need a couple Covert Ops, possibly a Gila, and all the Carrier gear, but it was impractical to use the wormhole to collect those in a timely manner.  EVE game time success.

The Hunt

The short lived Guristas event – the Hunt, is coming to a close on March 29th.

http://www.eveonline.com/thehunt.html

https://community.eveonline.com/news/news-channels/eve-online-news/the-final-weekend-of-the-hunt-is-on/

My existing PVE ships were not clearing the sites quickly enough, so I spent a bit of time in EFT before I came up with the following:

[Gila, Hunter]
Drone Damage Amplifier II
Drone Damage Amplifier II
Drone Damage Amplifier II

Federation Navy 10MN Afterburner
Pithum C-Type Medium Shield Booster
Pithum A-Type Kinetic Deflection Amplifier
Pithum A-Type Thermal Dissipation Amplifier
Sensor Booster II, Scan Resolution Script
Omnidirectional Tracking Link II

Heavy Missile Launcher II, Scourge Heavy Missile
Heavy Missile Launcher II, Scourge Heavy Missile
Heavy Missile Launcher II, Scourge Heavy Missile
Heavy Missile Launcher II, Scourge Heavy Missile
Small Tractor Beam I

Medium Capacitor Control Circuit II
Medium Capacitor Control Circuit I
Medium Capacitor Control Circuit I

Vespa II x2
Hornet II x4

You could replace the Deadspace stuff (which is mostly cheapish) with a mix of compact and T2 items, and still be effective.

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It comfortably ran the sites in 8 or 9 minutes.

There has been far less competition for the Guristas Detention sites in Hi-Sec than existed in earlier events. I haven’t had to contest one of them – including clearing 8 in a row in a system that got through traffic.

This would relate to the value of the drops – which average (despite what the client tells you) to only 1 or 2M ISK. If you can chain enough of them however the 4.5M ISK in bounties can add up.

The only saving grace I had was that I got a Gila Blueprint drop during one session, which upped the average reward noticeably.

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I remarked in my last post that you could use drones in these sites without issue. I don’t know if this was a glitch or by design, but twice after I had run around 10 to 12 sites in a session the NPCs would then start targeting my drones.

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This slowed the sites down noticeably (I stopped each time) – so if you plan on running a large number of sites in a row a different sort of ship might work better for you.

As with previous events, it did get me undocked and playing more.

Sucking out the life

I have to admit it was with slumped shoulders that I greeted the latest module rebalancing and updates. It flagged almost every one of my active fits as needing to be reviewed. Thanks damage controls. That is particularly problematic for those fits in Null Sec. While I am not spending a great deal of time there, I’ve been having no luck in finding wormhole routes back to Hi-Sec so that I can bring in waiting supplies or take out loot.

I’ve ran a few of those Guristas Detention Facilities in High Sec. The resists and low signatures of the Guristas Rats means I need to setup a different sort of PVE ship to run them. I don’t think I have much time to do that since the event finishes soon. On the plus side they don’t seem to argo drones and the bounties add up even if the loot drops can be poor. I did take the opportunity to grab a couple Frigate skins at 50% off that are on offer during the event.

Trigged by having to review all my ship fits again, and prodded by the proposed increases in transaction taxes, I’ve continued the liquidation and consolidation of my unused assets. Just recently I reviewed my 5 alts and accepted I never use 3 of them, and was not likely to use them either. It surprises me just how many contingencies and options I give myself, and how my backup plans have backup plans of their own. I left one of those Alts for use for Scouting and lighting Cynos, but transferred assets from two of them to my Corp and moved them across to Jita for Skill Point Extraction.

The process is simple enough – you buy Skill Extractor’s from CCP or the Market, select 500,000 SP to take off your character through drag and drop, then it creates a Skill Injector for you.

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You cannot lower your characters Skill point total below 5,000,000, so you require at least 5,500,000 Skill points to use an extractor.

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I did not plan to keep the characters afterwards (I really am in a clean out mood), so I concentrated on removing the higher rank and level skills to accumulate the Skill points as quickly as possible. If you are removing lots of skills that you no longer want, it can get tedious lowering their rank to 0. The skill – which you have purchased, remains against the character so you can reapply skill points to it later. Those characters wanting no evidence of their mining or industrial past will be disappointed.

The Extractor keeps track of prerequisites and locks skills needed for something else. Hovering your mouse over the locked skill shows a tooltip, which lists those skills.

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Each time you complete an extraction you get an annoying dialog box to confirm, and in my situation, a notification that there were no skills in the character’s queue.

I sold the Skill Injectors off to buy orders – given they were close to the sell orders and after taxes I’d not have ended up with much more ISK. Finally I transferred the ISK off the two characters and biomassed them. There was a lot less nostalgia doing this than I thought their might have been – but it had really been a very long time since I had used either.

I’m not entirely sure how I feel about the process. On one hand – it is just like a subset of my asset sell off. It turns something that is giving me no value now into ISK. Those SP however were generated by money I spent on subscriptions. It is not really money that I have earned in the game. In my situation it is just another variation of selling a PLEX for ISK.  I know in some people’s eyes that is cheating.

So now I am down to four characters – 185M SP Main, 173M SP Pilot Alt, 44M SP Industry Alt, and a 5M SP Scan and Cyno Alt.

You can still launch

I’ve mentioned this before, but thought I’d repost with screen captures after needing to use it again today.

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I still find the current launcher – as with the previous one, has sporadic issues. Today there was no login box, instead an unhappy face icon with a tooltip informing me there was a DNS look up error.

If your EVE client is patched and up to date, you can still run the client directly.

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Go to the menu icon next to the minimise and close icons, top right hand corner of the launcher, and then select Server List.

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This will open a new dialog box and you can simply click “Play on Tranquility” to get the EVE client to run. Today I was able to log in that way even though the launcher log in option was not working.

(The issue was transient and when I logged in later the launcher was working again. I wondered if it had anything to do with the 1900 odd pilots battling each other at the time.)