I've now read the May Summit Minutes cover-to-cover for a second time, and I was again so struck by some of what was in it that I was driven to the December 2011 Summit Minutes to read those from cover-to-cover again. And it really makes me wonder what would have happened had the little Fanfest incident not happened, or had those infamous 10058 votes been given to another candidate. The results are clear enough, though: even though much of CSM6 moved straight into CSM7, the entire frame under which this CSM views EVE Online seems to be completely different.
In December, there's nearly two entire pages in the minutes devoted to how to re-balance (read: nerf) super-caps.
In May, there's this: (page 85)
[Greene Lee] raised the issue of remote reps on super carriers as one factor making super-cap combat "not fun. You have 50 super carriers, and you can do nothing."Emphasis mine. Only once are super-caps mentioned as a problem by the CSM, and that's in the context of the fact that Faction Warfare alliances don't use them for fear of being hot-dropped by PL. (page 112)
Elise Randolph: "You bring titans and you volley through them. It doesn’t matter how many reps you have if you have titans."
Greene Lee: "You need how many titans?"
Seleene/Elise: "16, 16-17 to go through an Aeon. Not a lot."
In December, other than adjusting incursions, there's a lot of discussion and concern about where individual player ISK is going to come from. Mining will be getting buffed, it's said. New players will be given a lot of ISK as soon as possible. Holding sov will directly benefit player income more and alliance income less. Incursions will be adjusted to be harder but in general are meeting their goals in terms of player income.
In May, the CSM points out that... well, let's use direct quotes: Seleene says "everyone is so filthy rich that losses really don’t matter." (page 47) Elise Randolph can take a 100 billion ISK fleet and "at the drop of a hat just throw it around." (page 112) Seleene adds: "Currently things are like a bunch of fat people fighting over who gets to eat first at the ‘all you can eat’ buffet, no one will starve, it is just the question of who is first in the line." (page 48)
In December, both CCP and the CSM were apparently highly critical of the technetium situation and both sides regarded it as a very high-priority item to correct as soon as possible. The focus was on making alliances have to live in their space to make ISK in their space.
In May, CCP says that a major technetium fix is off the table for 2012 and nobody so much as raises an eyebrow. Instead, the CSM feels that alliance members are making too much ISK in their space, carrier ratting has become a scourge, and Two step "believes the many faucets this is coming from should be cut back across the board." (page 85) And indeed, this one's clearly becoming an issue because CCP points out the top ISK earners are all carrier pilots running anomalies. And yet, "The massive drop off of Vanguard sites was praised [by the CSM] since they were relatively risk-free ISK." (page 87) You know, the incursion-runners that aren't the top ISK earners.
In December, it was the CSM defending the ability of the players to make ISK and shouting that the game's massive alliances needed their incomes reduced. That CSM was massively anti-capital ship and anti-super-capital ship and was pounding on the table asking CCP what they intended to do about it.(1)
In May, we have the CSM arguing that players are rich enough and incomes need to be reduced across the board, while "Soundwave pointed out that people do die in incursions at rates higher than some other kinds of PvE content" (page 87) and "Dr.EyjoG expressed his awareness of concerns about inflation, and that it might price T1 ships and components out of the reach of younger players". (page 160)
Somewhere along the way, we've turned a corner. Or maybe it's just the CSM that has done so. The implication seems to be that anyone that wants a super already has one, therefore CCP no longer need worry about them, therefore doing anything about them is superfluous because they can be volleyed by the 16 or 17 Titans that apparently anyone can field. Remember, the two summits were less than six months apart.
tl;dr: In December, it felt like CCP was defending "how things are" while the CSM was attacking it on the basis of what they felt the players wanted. In May, with a few exceptions, it feels like the opposite.
We live in a New Eden where our player representatives feel like player income is a bigger issue for the game than tech and super-caps. Meanwhile, it's CCP that has to remind them that not everyone has been playing this game for seven years, not everyone is in a massive null-sec super-alliance, and not every player is space-rich.
Or am I seeing something that isn't there? I hope I am, because this is really bugging me. Discuss.
(1) The irony of this is certainly not lost on me.