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...

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Reality check for the Quote of the Week

While I was researching potential KOTWs, this quote just made me laugh:
When Rooks and Kings are willing to fight you, it's a good sign they have something big up their sleeves. Fighting them is only suicide unless you have absolutely overwhelming superiority, that eschews any difference of tactics.
Ain't that the truth?  It's a comment on this kill-mail that's associated with this fight.

These days, Rooks and Kings seem to only have two tactics:
  1. dropping a large number of Abaddons supported by two triage carriers and four to six Guardians on your face.
  2. dropping a large number of smart-bombing battleships on your face (example one, example two).
In both cases, they're probably not going to engage you at all if they can't get a perfect or near-perfect sweep with no losses on their side.  As a result, they only get one or two fights a week.

If you have no plan to fight their tactic of choice for your particular death, why do people fight them at all?  I normally despise blobs, but maybe Red Alliance had the right idea for how to deal with R&K.  Otherwise, all you're doing is volunteering to be embarrassed in one of their videos.  Discuss.


  1. Couldn't agree more. If you're not diein, you're not tryin.

  2. I remember seeing a small RnK roaming gang out in Syndicate once. Nobody would fight them, because everyone assumed (wrongly it turns out, since I believe they later died) that they were just bait for one of their two staple tactics.

  3. R&K aren't the only ones who are avoiding fights, unless they are certain to win. Most of null sec is operating under this same policy these days. Maybe you noticed the drop in supercap kills, except for a couple lol KMs?

    There just isn't any incentive in this game to engage in battles you can't win, esp. with expensive ships, so nobody does it, unless really, really bored.

    If KB efficiencies took # of battles per week (lost, as well as won) and ISK lost into account as *positive* factors instead of negatives, perhaps this would change.

    1. KB Efficiencies as a metric are mathematically broken. And everyone at this point knows it. Anyone who brings it up as something of value is trolling. :)

  4. I, for one, would kick them out of Syndicate.


    1. They moved out of Vestouve, so I guess you can say it's already been done. ;-)

    2. I think it would have been a hard business for synd locals troubling RnK's main gangs (they do bring extreme setups). When CFC showed in Syndicate, RnK fought on the towers and killed caps and fleets. Golden Napoc defence of NPC 0.0 <3

      and about choice to fight them.. sometimes they attack srsbsnsstrat ops, so you have to fight them.

  5. "I do not fear the man who has practiced 10000 kicks once. I fear the man who has practiced one kick 10000 times."

    1. Kicks are for trids, silly Rabbi.

  6. Hearing you complain about how 'unfair' R&K behave after bragging about how you bullied some bears out of 'your' neighborhood because they weren't playing by the rules you wanted them to kind of smacks of rather childish hypocrisy.

    1. Who complains about unfair RnK behaviour? And who bragging about the bulling and where?

    2. http://farm5.staticflickr.com/4149/5046091402_029de93f24.jpg

    3. It's a different situation entirely. The current target we're "bullying" is I-RED. You're not going to find a single fight where we beat up I-RED 15-0, and you're certainly not going to find unbroken strings of such fights. Hell, more than half the time, they kick our butts or at least hold their own.

      Explain to me please how that's bullying?

    4. From the Rote Kappelle killboard:
      Campaign: IRED Removal Service
      Damage done (ISK):1.64B
      Damage received (ISK):0.78B

      Campaign: A Helping Hand
      Comment: Punishing VEGA for helping Damned Nation
      Kills: 24
      Losses: 8
      Damage done (ISK): 4.47B
      Damage received (ISK): 0.4B
      Efficiency: 91.69%

      It doesn't look like RK is the weaker side in these campaigns. And the main one just make it more obvious:

      When you take into account the aggressive tone of your two posts about this campaign, it makes it hard for RK to avoid being called bullies. Because you only have two ways out:
      -either proving your opponents are not weaker than you (hard to prove with a 5-to-1 kill/loss ratio),
      -or point out they are fighting back (but you're still the ones intimidating weaker ones).

      Anyway since this is all in-game stuff, caring about whether you are bullies or not seems a bit pointless. Unless RK are role playing White Knights?

    5. This is Eve. Since when is being a bully a deplorable thing?

  7. My alliance goes on the occasional roam in Syndicate and have been hot dropped by R&K multiple times. It's always with overwhelming force (not complaining mind you, the goal of any military engagement is to win). After getting out from under a hot drop one of the guys in our fleet said "I wonder if we'll be in the next R&K video?" to which I replied "No. They're never going to show themselves hot dropping a group that they out number 4 to 1 with superior ships.". I actually have a lot of respect for R&K, and their videos are top notch. But if there is nothing but green on your killboard most of the time then you have to ask yourself if you're really good, or just risk adverse...

  8. It's what the culture of killboard statistics breeds.

    You reap what you sow. If being 'elite' in a game means that you can kill without losses (resulting high kb efficiency) people will either perfect tactics that allow them to kill large fleets with small fleets safely (what RnK does).
    Or the perfect tactics that allow them utterly outnumber/overwhelm their opponents (what most of 0.0 does).
    Neither being available in a situation, they choose not to fight, because if you do and loose the greater communities consensus will be that 'you lost'. So it's hard to fault RnK for it.

    Very few people in EVE these days care more about fights then about winning, such is the way of things vOv

  9. "If you have no plan to fight their tactic of choice for your particular death, why do people fight them at all?"

    In the case of the smart-bombs, we've been caught with this twice on RvB Ganked. Neither time we chose to engage, the ships appeared at our destination whilst we were in warp...

  10. No pilot with an efficiency over 50 percent can say that all they are looking for is a good fight. For most of us, regardless of the trappings of honor or fun that we try to wrap it in, a good fight is one that we win. The trick is getting the other guy to fight on your terms, so you can take his ship and not lose yours in the process.

    If I look at it from RnK's POV, they have just gotten to the point where the "good fights" are not as important to them as "epic kills". The game they are playing today is trapping and totally annihilating their opponents. They aren't playing the game with you. They are not here for your entertainment. This isn't friendly competition.

    They have decided to play a game by their standard, and are no longer willing to play Eve your way.

    You are not opponents, you are prey. Prey don't get killmails.

    Good for them. If that's the game they want to play, I wholey support it. I won't judge them from my standard.

    Personally, I don't understand how anyone can sit on a Titan and wait for the a bait Heavy Dictor to land in a bubble, just so 20 BCs can jump in and maybe kill one cruiser, but there are guys who do it. That's their game. Personally I don't like bashing structures, but some people love it. Hell, I don't really even like roaming, but I'll do it with my friends. Flying Battleships is null sec is silly. And I wouldn't even know what a supercap was if White Noise and Pandemic Legion had not dropped Aeons and Nyxs on my cruiser gangs.

    Like I said before, we're all probably not playing the same Eve.

    Sooner everyone realizes that, happier we'll all be.

    1. I mostly agree, with you here, but it's real easy to get positive efficiency while still truly just caring about fights.

      The way killboards work is fundamentally flawed in that sense.
      If I was to engage your cruiser gang with my rifter gang and say my 15 rifters (at 10 mil a piece) manage to kill 3 of your cruisers (at say 25 mil a piece) while you kill 15 rifters (150m) and loose 3 cruisers (75m) and you'll be ahead on the ISK war for the fight, any individual pilot in my rifter gang that got on at least 1 cruiser mail is now ahead 15 million for his personal statistics despite having lost the fight. And if the first cruiser to die only got onto 2 rifter mails before he died he's now 5 million behind for his stats, despite being on the winning side...

      Because killboards don't divide the value of a kill by the number of pilots on the mail the system is fundamentally broken. If 100 people kill a 2 billion carrier the total value of stuff killed on eve-kill effectively goes up by 200 billion because 100 pilots get 2 billion added to their total killed value.

      Basically isk efficiency tells you nothing about how good a pilot is. Every F1 pressing sov 0.0 drone that got on 1 titan probably has a better efficiency then a solo pilot who has 500 solo kills in frigates vs other frigates to his name even if said solo pilot wins 4 out of 5 fights.

    2. I am curious as to how you chose "50 percent." For example, it is not obvious to me that a skilled frig pilot loses half of his engagements.

    3. @Karbox: 50 percent assumes that the average pilot or fleet you fight is As Good As You. If that is the case, you should win as much as you lose. Some pilots should be better, you'll lose more to them. Some should be worse, you'll beat more of them. But if you take all fights, statistically it should always balance out.

      Unless, of course, you're choosing the fights that you're pretty sure you'll win, and avoiding the ones you pretty sure you'll lose.

      @Kaeda: I agree, for the most part. The killboard mechanics overemphasize the isk value of a kill and not the skill and experience of the opponent you fight.

      We aren't going to fix that problem, too many people will cry, especially the ones who lose ships flying solo or small gang and then repair their killboards getting kills in small or large gangs.

      There is value in the killboard, but it's not in the kills.

  11. This, plus your previous post, could it mean that space fight is always a game of numbers and what we get to see on TV -- Star Trek, Star Wars, Galactica -- is only scripted space opera. Fantasy ? What we see in EVE, when ships meet in the void, is ... real ? Flee or die.

  12. For next week: the freighter ganked in Uedama with 89 PLEX - and the loot fairy said "YES, MY CHILDREN, HAVE PLEX!"


    I think this occurred just after publication of this post.

  13. or enter the Excession

  14. "[...]why do people fight them at all?"
    Maybe there are still players who are looking for a challenge where the odds are stacked against them? Or believe that it's better to get fights rather than a green killboard?

    You're quite good to see the situation from a different point of view, but it seems this time you were not interested in explaining the choices of R&K or the people fighting them. It seems like a missed opportunity. After all R&K's search for perfect sweeps seems quite zen, hours of practice to get to that perfect moment. It might have been a nice post, wondering where this kind of gameplay would lead Eve and whether it's possible to avoid this kind of tactics in a sandbox environment. Or maybe this post should have been part of the November Junk Drawer? :)

  15. Rooks and Kings haven't used Abaddons in a long, long time. What they're famous for dropping on people is Bhaalgorns, Vindicators and especially Napocs.

    The Napocs they used against CFC shield blobs helped start the craze now for napocs/foxcats/whatever.

  16. I would hypothesize that RnK's play style is just where EVE's design decisions end up. A CCP developer said recently that they partially modeled early EVE after magic the gathering. You build your ship (deck) and then you undock.

    I feel that the statement that solo or small fleet fights and EVE are decided 100% by pre-flight preparation is false. I also feel like the opposite that fights are determined by nothing other than player skill on the field of battle is false. The middle ground possesses significant quantities of player skill but also rock, paper, and scissors.

    People want to win. They need to win. This sends them on the search for the ultimate rock to own all scissors as well as papers. RnK are doing this, and have been doing this for a while. The rest of EVE, in my opinion, is doing this for the most part as well.

    I engaged RnK once. I barely knew who they were. Our FC DC'd, or got called away, as they lit the cyno and I was to take charge of the fleet. Our corp was poorly organized for PVP. We had no business engaging them, but I, in my ignorance, clicked my MWD on while calling primary. We lost quite a few ships that day and a Tech moon. :P


Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.