Welcome to Jester's Trek.
I'm your host, Jester. I've been an EVE Online player for about six years. One of my four mains is Ripard Teg, pictured at left. Sadly, I've succumbed to "bittervet" disease, but I'm wandering the New Eden landscape (and from time to time, the MMO landscape) in search of a cure.
You can follow along, if you want...

Friday, May 16, 2014

Distant voices

I haven't done a "distant voices" post in quite a while -- where I feature stuff I like from what other people are writing. Plus, this month's junk drawer is filling absurdly fast for some reason. So let's empty some of it with some quickies, one per paragraph.

Let's start with the best news I've had about EVE in a while, something that will make the learned among you squeee with delight. Look who's blogging again.

Speaking of blogs, CSM9 wormholer corbexx has also started a blog. Sooner or later, it will make the Infrequent But Important cut, but I need to do some weeding in there first.

Few more pointers to blog posts. Kirith Kodachi made up a very simple little diagram that explains what racial skills you'll need to fly each pirate faction. The diagram also amply explains how CCP Fozzie didn't get around to "filling the void" this time around: there's still no pirate faction that combines Caldari and Minmatar skills. I would have thought a skirmishing missile ship would have been an obvious choice... In the meantime, if you want to get into pirate ships, train Gallente.

I'm never going to be a fan of Gevlon Goblin, but I have to admit that this post he did analyzing the CSM9 election results is quite a worthwhile read. If you're interested in the topic at all, go give it a look. Yes, it's absurdly full of grr Goons.

Danny Centauri is starting to attract my attention as one of EN24's best new writers. I don't always agree with him -- more on that in a second -- but he writes some interesting stuff. Here's an early analysis he did a week or so ago on who he believes will be the winners and losers of the coming industrial changes.

But on the flipside, this "analysis" by the same author on PLEX prices is a little bit silly. Note to Danny: causation and correlation are two different things. I agree PLEX sales volume is going down and I agree supply and demand will sometimes be a factor. But you should have at least mentioned there might be other factors. Still, this one trip-and-fall isn't going to make me stop reading his stuff.

Here's something interesting that isn't a blog post: CCP Greyscale has written in quite a bit of detail what he looks for in terms of player feedback on his work. My thanks to Wilhelm Arcturus at The Ancient Gaming Noob for the pointer!

I found this analysis of armor tanking done in a presentation by Quantum Cats Syndicate really interesting! Go give it a read.

This Rock, Paper, Shotgun article on Fanfest by Brave Newbie Rich Stanton ably captures both the good and the bad. It's definitely worth a few minutes of your time; it might be the single best article written about Fanfest I read this year. In particular, I'm very curious if CCP is going to try to quell the madness that surrounds the Dev Pub Crawl a little bit next year.

"EVE players scare me sometimes." -- CCP Guard

Irony alert! Read (or really, just skim) this forum post. Then check out what corp the author was in when he wrote it.

And finally, I didn't say anything about it at the time, but I believe this post from back in January by CSM8 member Malcanis is a work of art. I can't decide if I agree with it (most of the time I don't). But I get more out of it every time I read it. Obviously, it connects rather intimately with both my recent posts "The seven percent solution" and "Post-leadership New Eden". Thank you so much to the dozens of you that commented on both of those posts! You've given me a lot of think about.

Whew! See what I mean about the junk drawer being absurdly full? Now it's much emptier.


  1. As for Malcanis' post: CCP lives out of money. And that money is leaving Tranquility's EVE Online, which at the moment is the main source of income for CCP.

    Can CCP thrive by monetizing EVE in other ways than convincing people to play it?

    I doubt it, very seriously.

    1. Yeah, me too. But it's an intriguing counter-notion to people like me that wished EVE had a broader appeal.

      Malcanis says something right out of the gate in that post that I've only been able to orbit: that pretty much everyone in gaming has heard of EVE, has tried EVE, has already made up their minds about EVE, and what we've got of the market is all we're going to get.

      But instead of ending there, Malcanis only *starts* there and asks "what then?" As I said, I get more out of his post every time I read it.

    2. I'm not a fan of Malcanis because he is very short sighted. His post just illustrates that fact even further and it stems from his nature as a bitter old vet. The fact of the matter is that Eve has lots to offer new players but it has to overcome its reputation of being filled up with bitter old assholes. Many of them just like Malcanis. Secondly, it has to overcome the shitty new player experience. How many gamers do you know who have never once tried the game but know plenty about the reputation it has? I know more gamers who have never played the game and despise it than I know actual players!

      Malcanis is just hoping that we embrace his opinion that the player base won't grow so we can all take the plunge and agree that the game should be catered to the null sec clowns exlusively. He hopes we all just kick the dirt and say "Well, Eve was a PVP game all along so let's all go over the waterfall in this here barrel!". Every other post he makes is a thinly veiled promotion of this load of bullshit.

    3. For the sake of the argument, let's take Malcanis' hypothesis for granted: CCP recognizes the playerbase cannot grow and starts to heavily focusing on the "happeners" (that is, instigators and enablers).

      Let's also assume this has a huge consequence for the non-happeners, the "WoW-in-space" players, 30% quit. Let's take your other post as a basis, 0.3 * ( 0.5 + 0.4 ) = 0.27. Let's also assume Serenity has the same distribution (unlikely, but let's roll with it for now), 0.27 * 500k = 135k. Let's also round things to 10 bucks a month for each player, $10 * 135k = $1.35m/month.

      That's how much the company would give away to pursue this strategy, but the idea is to more than make it by monetizing the happenings in Tq. So, here are a few of my questions:

      - Does CCP have the required skillset? I find it hard to believe game developers are the most appropriate people to handle a successful media enterprise. They would probably need to recruit some apt personnel, with all that entails.

      - Can CCP successfully make that kind of shift? Maybe, after all they are already outreaching the media for similar efforts.

      - How would that later shift influence the happeners? Note, we are considering two shifts, the first to focus on instigators&enablers, the second to heavily publicize Tq events. I think some of the happeners would want nothing other than the chance to appear on TV, wolrdwide. Others, not so much. For a generally employed person, becoming known as a corp thief in a game could be taken out of context. Would CCP give them a cut? If they do, would this have any effect on how the viewers view the whole thing (some could perceive it as just stunt display and such)?

      I don't have the whole picture, but from what I see it does seen to have a substantial amount of risk in exchange of a considerable chunk of money they are already earning.

    4. That's a good numerical analysis, but it makes a couple of whopping assumptions;
      Firstly you're assuming that CCP can continue to maintain or even increase EVE's playerbase with their current two-faced balancing act. The post I wrote was predicated on the hyposthesis that EVE's subs are falling, and right now you don't need a whole lot of intra-line literacy to infer that they're doing just that right now. No I haven't seen numbers, but come on: they are. So what I'm getting at is that the tightrope act might be about to fail and CCP aren't faced with the choice of 'Pick a side or Stay on the rope?', they're faced with the choice of 'Which side do we fall on?'.

      The second assumption is that CCP are willing or even able to compete with an EVE pitched to the "space-WoW" market. Leaving aside the fact that there's an existing space-WoW (SWTOR), all of CCP's experience is in the diametric opposite direction, and they have shown no previously ability whatsoever to produce compelling NPC gameplay. Everything worthwhile CCP have ever done is based on understanding, incentivizing and enabling player interaction.

      You imply that CCP can't afford to take EVE in a new direction. I suspect that they're going to be forced to whether they like it or not, and the sooner they pick that direction, the better they'll be able to steer their course. It's usually better to jump than be pushed...

    5. Incidentally, CCP seem to be making every effort to develop EVE for people who don't play it; the comics, the TV thing, Valkyrie, books, etc.

      E-sports are a thing. Watching other people fight in EVE is pretty terrible, because you can't see what the hell is going on or how it matters until someone pops for no apparently reason, but following EVE as a GoT style drama... that could be a whole different class of experience.

    6. E-sports in EVE had potential. Viewership for the AT was actually growing quite rapidly, until CCP was stupid enough to add MBIII, aka Dolan, to the permanent cast. After Dolan joined, the AT viewer numbers went down, and the numbers for both NEOs were pathetic.

      Few people watch sports to hear the commentators talkabout themselves and make idiotic jokes. Whenever Dolan was around ,whole matches went down without any commentating on the actual match at all, accompanied by completely useless camera work, because they were not paying attention to the match.

      What's the point of watching something like that?

    7. CCP is obviously getting desperate - selling 2015 Fanfest tickets a year in advance... lol.

      And throwing out even more incentives to get players to bring back their old subscribers. I'm waiting for CCP to offer free Titans.

      There's no doubt that CCP's revenue must have taken a pretty big drop.

    8. @Malcanis, you can dismiss whatever you think my numeric analysis implied, but I was actually more interested in the questions, which nobody answered so far. What are the full spectrum of consequences of taking that approach? You say they only have two options, going full on shenanigans enabling or full on the themepark (of which they likely have a competitive disadvantage). I'm not convinced thinks are as black-and-white as you say, but even if that's the case I would really like to know about the consequences.

    9. Ishtanchuk FazmaraiMay 16, 2014 at 1:05 PM

      Hey, aren't we all flocking together here?

      I will say that CCP is already meeting its ultimate trial, not just because subs are eventually going down, but because the known plans can't drive them up, rather the opposite.

      CCP has admitted recently that 90% of their game doesn't works -namely the game as is perceived/experienced by the 50% who leave it and the 40% who don't buy the "HTFU and PvP" shit and seal a deal to leave the game sooner or later.

      Malcanis obviously thinks that the 10% should be enough for CCP, and if they just paid 10x more subscription money, that would be a no-brainer.

      But the fact is that most players leave, and do so for good reasons (nobody cares to ask why, though), and Malcanis doubts that CCP can fix it, or wants to fix it. "This is EVE, not WoW"

      I agree with him on something: space-WoW is not CCP's business. That's out of the table.

      But I insisted, quite long, that CCP should had expanded the game to keep the 90% subbed. Not by doing space-WoW, but a different way to experience EVE. I quite dreamed of an avatar EVE that was free of some of the assholery in space, because, between spoiling your customers' fun and not spoiling it, the second is quite a smarter move.

      Of course, I failed, and eventually I quit EVE -not for good, just out of boredom and lack of hope. "It's dead, Ish", I said to myself.

      Now I -we?- see CCP cannibalizing the shrinking playerbase, betting that by handling everything to nullsec, nullsec will make it worth the effort. Hoping that people really want to go to the new space even if that means leaving behind everyhting they ever did in EVE before -like NOT being a part of nullsec.

      Probably it's a cultural thing -those norse offspring think of their emigrations as an heroic saga, rather than the pathetic flight they were, which had them eating rotten shark in godawful frozen islands. When given the chance to stay or leave to emigrant hell, most people stay. Unless it's a game and you can just stop playing and make no choice at all.

      We are not forced to play EVE. If we don't like what we see, we take our money away. Even the craziest, stubbornest of us will learn the lesson if they hammer it on us for years.

      I am not returning to EVE anytime soon. And when I feel like doing so, there will be no EVE to go back to. Either it will be a different beast for worst, or -unlikely- my dreams will become true, or it will be eventually dead.

      And what a waste will that be. What a terrible, tragical waste.

    10. I think the consequences are happening already. Barring a radical update in EVE's actual gameplay mechanics, I don't think we're ever going to see many more people playing it than do now.

      When I said it's better to jump than be pushed, what I meant was that CCP can choose embrace the change and focus on doing things that converts as many "chorus" to "cohorts" as possible. Or they can stick their head in the sand and pretend that nothing's really changed. Or they can go full themepark and ride the standard MMO subscription rollercoaster, ending up with a dying F2P in a couple of years.

      So far, everything CCP has done over the last year has been congruent with what I posted. Will it work? Hell if I know mate. I'm not smart enough to predict the future, only to see the obvious in the present.

    11. I have a slight hope that the NPE things Rise is working on will have noticeable effect on the flows of new players, but that doesn't change the big picture.

      I'm unapologetically biased against all theme parky things in EVE. The reason is that because all NPC-action be it low level rat AI or high lever "Amarr Empire wants this" has to be inherently mechanical, which means it can be gamed and broken. When it's broken it becomes a grind like missions and ratting in general have. There is no amount of lore hand waving that can change the how silly all the NPC-factions regardless of whether they are pirate or empire seem when they send innumerable ship to be destroyed just to entertain the capsuleer population. And don't get me started on how the empires allow repeat offender criminals just fly around their space.

      If the red cross shooting if absolutely needed provide it in form of some kind of space animal, maybe a new strain of rogue drones, that organically spreads though the space and can be hunted for resources and if the herds are not sufficiently culled could become a plague and if over harvested will die out locally.

      In combat another players are way more interesting opponents than AI ever will (well maybe if the AI was built to win instead of being built to entertain).
      CCP can't set high level goals for the NPC-factions or ban known suicide gankers from empire without jumping straight in the middle of the sandbox as a player. Instead they should let the players have such power.

      One thing that I think is right up EVE's alley, but that isn't reality right now is player controller empires. The current null climate leaves solo-minded players behind, because only provi allows unaffiliated people do stuff in their space. This makes null feel more like military camp than an empire. The only way to deliver on the player empire dream is to support the NRDS world with tools and provide incentives for providing infrastructure for the use of other players. In a player run empire solo players can more naturally effect be effected by actions of others around them.

    12. CCP's gamble is to improve what works (haves a high retention) rather than fix what doesn't works (haves low retention) in order to swap the relative weight of both demographics.

      The tricky part is that as CCP income stems mostly from what doesn't works, they have limited time and resources before their financials dive into the red.

      Fot years, EVE's dirty secret was that what made EVE grow was not the good content, rather endless rows of people paying for the bad content...

    13. Eve Online is a mining sim with a lego feature and a glorified chitchat relay.
      Anything else is fluff, CCP should invest into Avatar Facial Animation linked to your webcam, for monetization option.

      Regards, a Freelancer

    14. I don't think you can't have a broad base of PvP styles (high, low, null) - e.g., player created content, without the "themepark."

      CCP has to keep developing both: it is a good system, generally speaking.

      If there are no miners and mission runners, there's nothing for the ganker, there's no highsec trash talk that can lead to wardecs and thefts and schemes to extract revenge.

    15. @Anon334
      "I don't think you can't have..." --> "I don't think you can have..."
      -fixed by Anon334

    16. From what I could make out at a few of the panels on the fanfest stream, the PVE "themepark" of Eve is slated for a refresh. Several times over the course of the day there was talk of "tools" being developed to allow CCP to start pumping out content.

      Right now, if I understood it correctly, everything has to be placed by hand on a database table, at a ruinously expensive slow rate of production. They can't just drag and drop onto a 3d field then save the position to the database. For everything. Missions, mining anoms, exploration sites... what have you.

      From what I understood, that, and a whole lot of other limitations are in the process of being removed. Then CCP plans to do a new wave of content.

    17. @Halycon, I will believe it when I see it, if ever. I'm watching what they do, not what they say, and so far their actions are sending a very clear message.

    18. Malcanis said: "So what I'm getting at is that the tightrope act might be about to fail and CCP aren't faced with the choice of 'Pick a side or Stay on the rope?', they're faced with the choice of 'Which side do we fall on?'."

      Namely, the side that gives them fame, or the side that gives them money.

      it is just natural that they try to turn money-people into fame-people, or even monetize fame, but that would be bound to fail even if EVE had a "good" fame.

    19. @Malcanis... Or they can go full themepark and ride the standard MMO subscription rollercoaster, ending up with a dying F2P in a couple of years.

      Why? Why does it HAVE to be one or the other? Why do you and so many say, "PVP Sandbox or Themepark." One of the other...???

      Why not both? Tell me why a good, real sandbox open PvP MMO cannot have good PvE? Why can't EVE have good PvE without being a Themepark?

      I say it can. I say everyone who says HTFU PVP or GTFO are the people killing EVE and driving away the 50% and driving out the 40%... you know, a large percentage of that 10%...

      Let's see, let's try this... KEEP the open sandbox RULES... don't change a blessed thing about the mechanics of PvP... let's just have engaging and interesting PvE. There is no reason CCP can't create interesting PvE... they just CHOOSE not to. And that choice,my friends... that is what keeps the 50% disinterested, and some of the 40% from staying interested.

      I do believe some of the 50/40 don't stay/leave because of the open PvP... some people, mebbe a lot of people, just don't want to be griefed is all, they won't ever accept it, and some don't wanna skillup their toons for 'years', they too won't even accept that ... and these are 'niche' parts I feel CCP needs to keep...

      However, the CHOICE they made, that PvE is ONLY for making ISK to support PvP.... the CHOICE not to try and make good PvE... that could be fixed. And then we WOULD have a shot at retaining more of the 40 and catching and keeping some of the 50... IE, GROW the game.

      But dear gods... please don't let CCP ever drink Malcanis's Sweet Sweet Nullsuc Koolaid... and that taking knee to the shitlords in null is THE END GAME of EVE... cause it sure as hell doesn't have to be....

      CCP Seagull said it herself...

      "I want EVE to have more things to do for small scale groups and solo pilots - and all over space, not just in null sec." THIS

      When I talk about player control, I mean the effects players have on each other all over space - in different ways - not just the null sec free-for-all - and I don't mean that the null sec model should be extended to everywhere. and THIS

      I know it can be hard to hear solo and small groups in the vision when for a long time "player driven" has mostly meant nullsec and huge corps and alliances - and I got some questions along the same lines in the vision roundtable at Fanfest. But both small groups and solo players are very important in the design work we are doing now and to our vision for the future of EVE.

      First project where this should be visible is the corporation and alliance system work we are starting after the summer - that will look deeply at small and medium sized groups, including corporations where all characters belong to a solo player." and more THIS...

      Nope... EVE is a PvP game, but it isn't just a Nullsec game and it can be so much more...

    20. Ishtanchuk FazmaraiMay 18, 2014 at 4:18 AM

      Quoting CCP Seagull: "But both small groups and solo players are very important in the design work we are doing now and to our vision for the future of EVE."

      Parole, parole, parole, parole parole soltanto parole, parole tra noi... (rolling eyes)

      It's never what they say, rather what they do (or don't do).

    21. See TurAmarth?

      Looks like more people than just me do get it. Your dev friend can say all she wants how she wants small player groups and solo players to "interact" and have more impact. But like I said in your blog, best case scenario, if CCP starts looking at this issue after the summer is done, you won't even see the first tangible effect until at least January. And given CCP's track record, where they can't even get a UI right, and looking at the posts yesterday, freighter changes, do you seriously think they can get something more complicated right?

      And I hate to break it to you, but a ton of solo casual players DO hang around in game for extended periods, and don't want to be forced to interact with others as your new best friend wants. Because CCP has made it clear that "interaction" in their books means cut-throat competition on some level, whether it is with this new industry mess, or outright PvP.

      The guy that got me into Eve had 3 industrial accounts. He was thrilled to just mine and make stuff, then interact with other players when he sold that product on the market. He would spend a couple hours each day updating his orders, mining, and messing with his PI. It relaxed him after a stressful day of work, It was fun for him. He ended up quitting completely. And he quit not because he was bored. He quit because other players wanted to "interact" with him by war dec griefing him and ganking him.

      There are a lot more players out there like that than CCP can possibly fathom.

    22. The key question related to themepark type PVE is how many developer hours / month does it take to keep TurAmarth and Dinsdale engaged. Creating new tools will significantly lower the ratio of course, possibly even making it feasible.

      Even with good tools it's going to be hairy mess to figure out. It seems like a nobrainer that everything should be inherently interesting to do at least for some people, but maybe there is demand for content that is explicitly about grinding. On the other hand the inherent mechanistic nature of NPC-interaction means that one piece of repeatable content won't survive in the hands of the min-maxing player base for more than few months before its analysed into pieces and broken which turns something that was supposed to be engaging into a grind for the rewards. To me this makes missioning and anomaly ratting are incredibly immersion breaking in addition to the silliness I think I went through elsewhere in this discussion. That is the reason I remain sceptical about the possibilities of engaging PVE.

      There is one thing where I agree with Dinsdale though and that is the high sec wars at least the way they are currently make EVE the universe lose way more than they allow it gain. There is no incentive to fight back if PVP is not your main activity and it's basically just a mean for PVPers to force their playstyle on others.

    23. @Megaron, I think your first paragraph shot your argument down. To keep TurAmarth and, especially, Dinsdale engaged, all evidence points to no effort at all, given their current level of engagement with the game at large.

      To state the obvious that lies in front of our eyes, if you want to extend this to the rest of the PvEr, the last time CCP put any significant effort in PvE content was with incursions, years ago. Yet to this day about 90% of active accounts entertain themselves with pve content. So, at face value it seems a solid benefit for the effort the company spent.

      Maybe you want to argue that (total player entertainment time)/(total dev time) is ineffective in other MMOs, that's not what we observe in Eve right now.

    24. Yeah, well, maybe I'll try the save the first paragraph by implying that I'm really talking about the meta-Tur and -Din that they portray themselves to be or something something or maybe not. Your point is very valid. In general the part of the player base that isn't part of the community is a major blind spot for the community, though with all the data at their fingertips it might be less of a blind spot for CCP.

      Raids/PVE being expensive seems to be the Google truth, though I'm having hard time finding a proper source. I have no reason to believe that this would not be the case for EVE as well. The lack of proper tools makes it ever worse of course and are probably the reason for the dry spell in this area. It's quite safe to say that there will be new PVE content coming after the tools to do it efficiently are in place and I find it very likely that all the old content will be revisited too.

      But if CCP somehow manages to break the google thruth and churn enough PVE content to make subscriber count start growing because people want to play for the content and not grind for the rewards I will be very very surprised.

      I'm a little hesitant to start picking a part the "90%" because I don't have any more sources than you referenced pregoogled. It does include things like exploration and mining that are kind of separate things and though have their own issues are conceptually more believable. It also includes people grinding for rewards who don't give a rat as about the content as long as the ISK/hour is competitive and they are not constantly forced to relearn stuff ie. they don't actually want the content to be engaging at all. This naturally include alts of null-PVPers in null and in high sec.

      Having said all of that a lightning strike like realization just hit me though it is elementary and often repeated. ISK and items spawned into the economy only through some kind of PVE element. I think the only exception is LP rewards for faction warfare related kills.

      This means that there really isn't EVE without the PVE, but it also means that the PVE content faces design pressure to be repeatable/grindable which enough of it is, but it additionally should make sense when grinded which specifically missions and anomaly ratting fail. (FFS you can install sov. upgrade that makes even more NPC though themselves into senseless and hopeless combat against capsuleers)

      In addition to making sense when grinded I think PVE content design should maximize the player interaction it offers, but not in the lame "PVErs provide targets from ganking" kind of way. Because risking their ship is, I think quite understandably, a mental barrier for some people, but we are already on the mercy of RND regarding the rewards in many context PVErs might be more ok with player interaction that risks part of the rewards in stead of the ship. Well, reactions to ninja looting and salvaging don't support this, but whatever there's always some room for a little HTFU. Regardless of the reactions I really don't think there is a place in EVE for any content that is totally void of interaction with other players, because that is what makes our stories real.

      One day I'll move these walls to a blog of my own. I promise.

  2. @Anon's, all of them. I am afraid that what Malcanis proposing is already happening. Ripard's post from last week was very similar, as was the Crossing Zebras post here: http://crossingzebras.com/the-right-kind-of-eve-player/

    Plus, we have the industrial changes that make it clear the casual player is no longer welcome in Eve.

    I don't know how many notice it, but the cartel propaganda machine starts grinding out a message 9-12 months before CCP actually does what it is told. (Remember Malcanis and mynnna leading the charge last year on "NERF HIGH SEC INDUSTRY, CREATE A LEVEL PLAYING FIELD FOR WE DESTITUTE NULL SEC PLAYERS!!!")

    Same thing is happening again. The message of CCP does not need that casual high sec player is slowly starting to get a little more loud and persistent.

    It is, of course, economic suicide, but this is the same company that has just blown 20 million on one game before it even hit alpha, and just killed off another one in a spectacularly bad fashion that will probably show up in business class PR case studies.

    Smart business decisions are not exactly their strong suit.

    1. I am the casualist of casual players these days.

    2. Malcanis, you are a liar. You are no more casual than Obama is a Libertarian. You play in the most sophisticated, most rigorous and most demanding meta side of the game of Eve there is, the CSM. And you are a veteran. Because of the meta and politics of Eve, not logging in doesn't mean you aren't playing. Nice try on pulling the wool over people's eyes.

    3. Here you're referring to hi-sec missioning? Because that's all I've done since FF. (Along with a few BPO research jobs)

  3. I wonder how much of the delay in the industry patch comes from the obvious hit to the wallet that CCP has taken in the past month? I have cancelled a few accounts and know many others who have cancelled multiple accounts. I'm certainly not signing up to rent space from some dipshit like Mynnna.

    1. There are two reasons for the delay:

      1) CCP mgmt is concerned about the potential drop in subs, but doesn't know what to do about it. Greyscale, however, adamantly insists that they go ahead as planned, without any major changes to his industry changes. He believes that the player unrest is all noise, no substance.

      2) The Goons asked for the delay, so that they have more time to get research on their BPOs to ME/PE 10 before the changes hit. As you know, all ME/PE 10 will be converted to "perfect" BPOs under Greyscale's new scheme, giving these "exploiter" players the advantage over both new industrial players (who will need years to get a lot of the BPOs up to perfect now) and older industrial players (who had BPOs researched up much higher and now will have no advantage over these newly researched BPOs).

    2. If there's anyone - Goon or non-goon - who's read those blogs who isn't urgently remote- researching as many BPOs as they can while they can then I don't know what to say.

      Still, at least you're willing to admit that Goons are involved in science and industry activity instead of trying to claim that all hi-sec activity is done by pure hi-sec players, so that puts you a minimum of one level above the baseline :tinfoilhat: poster.

    3. @Malcanis - ofc, the Goons are involved in high-sec industry.

      If you look at the Comments threads for all of the industry dev blogs, you'll find non-stop posting, and trolling, by the Goons' economic cartel, incl. myannna and Weaselior. The Goon agenda, however, is clearly to completely nerf high-sec industry for individual & casual players, in favor of high-sec industry for larger organizations. This shift benefits them more than any other group in the game.

      Forcing players to put their BPOs in the POS? C'mon. The only ones who benefit from that change are the ones who cannot be cost-effectively wardec'ced in high-sec, and can afford to support large POSes. Everyone smaller is SOL.

      Bidding on work teams to improve efficiency? LOL. Again, who is going to win those auctions? The individual industrialist? Right.

      The Goon trolling on the forums is also very clever, meant to make CCP ignore any significant complaint by the high-sec casual industrialists, and to encourage them to leave the game. Unfortunately, too, the forum moderators will not delete any Goon trolling, although they actively delete anyone else's attempt to troll.

      This isn't about pushing high-sec industry to null-sec. It is all about eliminating the competition from individuals and smaller corps in high-sec industry, by forcing them to find something else to do in the game, or leave it entirely.

    4. You're following the usual pattern of people who complain about the Kronos changes: you've failed to read important parts of them:

      "Forcing players to put their BPOs in the POS?"

      What part of decreasing copy times by a factor of 20 did you not understand. I'll break it down for you:
      1) Keep valuable BPO safely in station. Run copies from it 24/7
      2) Use copies to manufacture goods in POS
      3) Receive bacon

    5. @Malcanis - what part of the fact that you cannot do ME/PE research remotely did you not understand? Let me break it down for you:

      1) Put valuable BPOs in small research POS to benefit from higher ME/PE speed
      2) Get wardec'ced because you have labs on your easily-killable POS
      3) Lose whatever ME/PE time you invested, because you have to remove BPOs from the POS before wardec goes active in 24 hrs
      4) Waste time taking down your POS
      5) Lose bacon due to wasted POS fuel


      3) Lose your POS and BPOs because you don't log in everyday to EVE, so you miss the 24 hour wardec notice.

      A lot of casual players DO NOT log into the game everyday. Nor do players who happen to be off on a RL vacation. Currently risk of wardec is low, due to the fact that it is unlikely that any expensive BPOs are in a high-sec POS. After changes, any POS with a lab will become a likely wardec target.

    6. What Malcanis said:

      There is a lot of propaganda that this is going to destroy high-sec industry.

      I will only make more isk thanks to BPO copying being reduced by a factor of 20.

      Oh... you need to research a BPO? Put it in a station for research. Worried about a small tower being primaried by a wardeccing corp? Put them in a medium tower, or god forbid, a large tower.

      A medium faction tower costs about 550m isk up front, and about 175m isk/month to run. Manufacturing out of it covers that monthly fuel cost in 3 days.

      When the indy changes happen, You will need one lab of each type. Everything else can be defenses/ewar, making for a truly nasty Dick Death Star.

      A Medium Faction Tower will have 40M+ EHP when properly kitted out.

      Alternatively you could put one up that only has 30M EHP, but has a lot more nasty defenses against Marauder Fleets.

    7. So when you say "forced" what you mean is "I want the best research times but don't want to risk anything for it"

      You're going to be perfectly able to research BPOs in a 100% safe station, it'll just take longer, but that's an incrementally longer one-off time investment. After that you're 0% worse off than someone who researched their BPO in a POS - and as you point out, they risked losing their BPO, so there's a chance you're much better off than him!

      In essence you're whining that you want to take a risk that might not pay off.

      I'm sorry but it's beyond me to take such a complaint seriously.

    8. @Malcanis - No, when he says "forced", he means that he needs to assume an insanely large risk, in order to compete with the large alliances, who can put up high-sec research POSes with very little, if any risk, due to the way that high-sec wardecs are currently implemented.

      As planned, these changes do not allow for equal risk for equal reward. They are overwhelmingly biased towards benefiting the large alliances.

    9. @Dannar - dickstars are ineffective against marauders in bastion mode.

    10. Like putting you character's name on your post matters, you moron. I also like your "reasoning". Your reasoning consists of guesswork. No one knows what the net effect of the industry changes will be because their are so many of them. What a fucking idiot you are.

  4. Thanks for the link love, Jester. Lots of great links in this post--in particular, that RPS article!

  5. Why argue about it? This whole industry change mess can be avoided by just leaving things as they are now. Why lose those industry players if you don't need to?

    I talked to a number of old industry players. Overall, they think that the current system works fine as is - the only real complaint is the UI, which they say hasn't seen any improvement over the years.

    But, maybe it is too late? They also say that Greyscale never backs down, even when wrong, so they expect his changes to go live. Most already are shutting things down and preparing to quit the game.

    So, I don't get how this is supposed to be good for the game or for CCP. Doesn't less players mean less money for CCP?

    1. "So, I don't get how this is supposed to be good for the game or for CCP. Doesn't less players mean less money for CCP?"

      Son, adults do all sorts of incredibly stupid things for all sorts of incredibly stupid reasons.

    2. How many *new* industry players have you talked to lately? You know, the ones staring at 40 - 60 day wait times for research slots in safe space? You think they are still going to be around to collect their BPOs come the 60 day mark?

    3. @Andreas - there are very few new industry players, because there isn't anything for them to build, except for T1 ammo and T1 rigs. T1 modules are worthless and the margins on T1 ships are too small for noob industrialists.

      And, don't even get started on all of the noise about building T2 stuff, which new players can't even begin to touch.

      The players using the 40-60 wait time research slots are all older players, incl. a lot of Goon and other alliance industrialists.

    4. What is f**king laughable are all of the idiots who have their heads buried in the sand, up to their asses, saying "yeah, yeah, just propaganda, blah, blah, stupid carebears, htfu or gtfo, yak, yak, EVE is doing fine and will do fine forever, quack, quack", as the EVE sub numbers visibly drop.

      Hell, Jester even casually suggested in his CSM9 election analysis post that "overall EVE subscriptions are down 5% since then [last year]" as if this isn't a big f**king deal. Are you insane or what?

      Wake up and smell the s**t, boys and girly boys. Old players are quitting the game faster than new players are signing up, and the twats who say "that's ok" are really fubar. The "EVE is harsh - f**k high-sec plan" and "improve null-sec plan" which CCP has been disastrously following obvously isn't working to bring in the new subs, and if the high-sec needs to be turned into WoW or Disneyland to bring in and keep the paying customers, then that's damn well what CCP should be doing.

      Do I care if high-sec is carebear heaven? Hell, no. As long as their money is paying to keep the servers running, so that I can keep on whacking off my thing in low-sec, I say leave them f**kers, and their credit cards, alone.

    5. "I talked to a number of old industry players. Overall, they think that the current system works fine as is - the only real complaint is the UI, which they say hasn't seen any improvement over the years."

      Yeah, I bet they do. They researched their BPOs years ago. They set up their supply chains. They spreadsheeted their perfect supply chains. They don't have to do any work now, just PUSH BUTAN GET BACON.

      Now they're faced with the prospect of actually having to pay attention, make choices, accept trade offs, and worst of all, interact with other players.

      I completely believe you when you say that they wish things would stay as they are, just as the people who owned Titans wished that things would stay as they were when AoE doomsdays were changed or when subcap blapping was nerfed.

      But they won't, will they?

      Oh that's too bad, how my tender heart bleeds for the poor dears.

      Breaking up old, stale, zero-interaction, zero choice gameplay is EXACTLY what this S&I rework is intended to achieve. Every complaint I read about only convinces me that it will succeed.

      Still, enough about Industry, which is a subject that's minimally related to the original post that Jester linked to.

    6. Don't bother arguing with Malcanis. He is one of the morons who told CCP that these industry changes would make the game better and be well received by all of the players, and now is futilely trying to justify his fail position. And, he'll be making more and more excuses throughout the summer, as the sub numbers continue to drop. Loser. Nothing but.

    7. At least I'm willing to put my name to my posts and my reasoning behind my opinions rather than just making "NO UR DUMB SO UR RONG" anonymous posts.

    8. Like putting you character's name on your post matters, you moron. I also like your "reasoning". Your reasoning consists of guesswork. No one knows what the net effect of the industry changes will be because their are so many of them. What a fucking idiot you are.

    9. Breaking up old, stale, zero-interaction, zero choice gameplay is clearly the road to EVE that is even more EVE than the EVE we have today and worthy design goal in it self.

    10. "At least I'm willing to put my name to my posts and my reasoning behind my opinions rather than just making "NO UR DUMB SO UR RONG" anonymous posts." - Malcanis

      Ah, the well-worn final comeback of the truly incompetent....

      Which only goes to prove that Anon349 was right: Malcanis = Loser

      We can add this definition to the EVE lexicon.

    11. Malacnis: "Still, enough about Industry..."

      Yeah, best for Malcanis to admit that CSM8 really screwed the pooch on whatever advice they gave to CCP about the f**ked-up industry changes and move on.

      After all, ultimately, it isn't the CSM's fault. The CSM represents only their limited self-centered game play, and not that of the majority of the players. And, so, CCP had their heads up their asses to have taken that advice and gone ahead with the changes, without testing the waters first. Not the first time this has happened though.

    12. I'll take Malcanis "guesswork" over unsupported personal attacks any day.

    13. Anon227 - "... unsupported personal attacks..."

      Nice one, Malcanis. So, you resort to an anonymous post to support yourself. Wanker.

    14. Oh I get it, if Malcanis comes on here and makes inflammatory posts toward the player base that is fine. If I call him out on it, I am making "unsupported personal attacks" and my post is deleted. Fact is, Malcanis isn't interested in representing anyone but himself and his friends while on the CSM. He has demonstrated that in his posts here and in the official forums. He is abrasive and he is unprofessional.

  6. Dude. Right now you don't have to have BPOs to build, there are plenty BPCs available in contracts.

    1. Oops, wrong place to reply :)

    2. Dude. Only noobs buy the over-priced BPCs available in contracts.

      Every vet industrialist either owns the BPOs or gets BPCs directly from somone who owns the BPOs.

    3. I've managed to get a good price most of the time, and BPCs were more convenient for massively parallel manufacturing in short cycles, both t1 and t2.
      I have BPOs for what I knew I would always need, but most of the time I had to augment them with BPCs in order to fully utilize available materials.

    4. Shatttershark - Anon1045 means that you can, and should, make arrangements with another player to get those BPCs, at well below what you see up on contracts. There are many players who crank out BPCs for other players, but do no manufacturing themselves.

    5. I know and I did, but I've seen quite decent prices in contracts as well, especially in very large batches.

      Btw, that thing about arrangements makes me wonder how much Malcanis actually knows about industry if he says that there is "zero-interaction". That should probably boost confidence in "Best.CSM.Ever.".

  7. yeahhh, the whole flag pvp thing during pubcrawl was a little fucking insane this year. im not saying i didn't steal one myself but having almost started a fistfight over ours being stolen earlier, it's only a matter of time before shit gets really real

    1. Don't worry if it comes down to a fight, most Eve players would be winded after ten seconds of wind milling.

  8. "they're faced with the choice of 'Which side do we fall on?'."

    This may not be an actual, sustainable choice by its own. There is a risk this would adversely affect the kernel of dystopia so necessary to make the entire concept work. An universe where nobody disagree what said universe is all about, to begin with, may not contain a critical mass of conflicting views required to make it a dark, cold and gritty place in practice.

    To put it back in the amusement park analogy, yes, it is hard to advertise a park known to ridden with pedophiles and pickpocketers, but against all the odds that's exactly what has been achieved. The unknown variable is how much success would be achieved by a park advertised as exclusive to pedophiles and pickpocketers, to the point of barring anyone else at the gates.

    Eve is a dystopia in practice, but that's the case not simply because the game mechanically allows it to happen, it also requires people willing to take that advantage of it and people prone to fall for it. It cannot stand in just two legs. If the victims are removed from the equation, it becomes a dystopia only in potence, not in practice.

    Without ganks and corp shenanigans, all that's left of media-worth events would be coalition politics and massive battles. That may seem enough to us to keep out-of-game people interested, but it is not guaranteed either.

    A quick look at Massively, a site that praises themselves for covering the MMO niche, shows they no longer covers fleet battles, to the point they had to rush a publication when the general media covered B-R. To my knowledge, the director responsible for the Eve section is partial towards these engagements, saying they always boils down to how much stuff was destroyed and nothing more. My conclusion is that there is a considerable chance that the marketing potential for fleet battles is exhaustible, and with those out of the picture, the allure for the metagame shenanigans loose a lot of its spark, being not too different than top guild rivalry, which nobody cover either.

    1. What's sad is that CCP could call back tens of thousands of subscribers just by adding new Level 4s -say, 20 or 30 of them. That would have all the former mission runners trampling each other to try the new toys.

      New missions would do more for the subcriptions than any big fleet drama.

    2. Given that making EVE a harsher place for everyone didn't work to bring in the new players, and, in fact, resulted in a measurable loss in older players, I think CCP should try the exact opposite, by making high-sec even safer and more civilized, and pushing null-sec even further away by adding a wider buffer of low-sec or even WH systems.

      Eliminate the high-sec ganking, the scams, the wardecs and all of that nonsense for a year and see if the subs go up, stay constant, or go down. Make it far more difficult and expensive for the "criminal" element to prey on the new players. If the subs go up, which I suspect they will, then CCP will know which direction to take the game, in order to keep the company growing.

      This doesn't affect null, anyways, except that they will be forced to find fun in their own space - maybe even start that next big war finally.

      One universe for everyone is a fine theory, but such thinking doesn't really work well in practice. The majority of people in RL would be much happier if we didn't all need to live on the same planet.

    3. So, your suggestion boils down to remove a different pillar that holds the concept standing. I cannot really see how that improve the situation either.

      There's no shortage of MMOs that restrict player interaction, where ganks and scams are not allowed. Eve doesn't need to try to copy them. It needs to do its own thing, using an effective strategy.

    4. Anon 1:36: "Eve doesn't need to try to copy them. It needs to do its own thing, using an effective strategy."

      If by "effective" you mean "sustainable" then that's not going to happen. EVE has been built on a unsustainable model of "prey or be preyed" in which many are prey to a few, and that model has run out of preys.

    5. > The unknown variable is how much success would be achieved by a park advertised as exclusive to pedophiles and pickpocketers, to the point of barring anyone else at the gates.

      Considering the age of the pickpockets I've seen... you may have made the most disturbing PvPers and Carebears analogy I've ever heard.


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