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.
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Wednesday, December 12, 2012

In emergency, break glass

EVE Online is fast approaching its tenth anniversary.  And it's also facing some fairly major issues: lack of new content, an aging crop of bitter-vets who have trained everything and who are looking for something new to do, massive invincible sov blocs controlling vast swaths of null, super-cap proliferation out of control, and a large population of players with far too much ISK.

Believe it or not, I've come up with something CCP can do to at least partially address every one of these issues, all at the same time, and celebrate their tenth anniversary in style.

It's time to open up Jove space.

I've thought through a step-by-step process for starting to do it, one that would be rather epic and have interesting impacts throughout New Eden without being overpowering or making the game all about Jove space.  It would also protect new players from the major impacts of Jove technology without closing off Jove technology to new players that wanted to try it.

Before I start, let's quickly review what's been revealed about the Jove in EVE's lore.  I'm not an expert on this, so I may have some of the details wrong, but I'm sure people will correct any mistakes I make in the comments.  Still, I'm reasonably certain I have the gist correct, and any details I miss can be adjusted.  The Jove are essentially human, the first humans to climb out of barbarism after the collapse of the EVE gate.  Whereas it took the Amarr and Caldari some 8000 years to come out of the dark ages, it can be argued that the Jove never had any period of barbarism at all, or only a very brief one.  As a result, their technology is several thousand years ahead of the younger races... but much of that technology is biological and genetic, in the form of genetic engineering of their own species.  As a result, the Jove can only loosely be described as completely human.

Jove space technology is highly advanced, but not overwhelmingly so... or at least the space technology they show the other races isn't.  In particular, in the one battle between the Jove and an Empire faction, the Amarr invasion of Vak'Atioth, the Jove lost one frigate or cruiser for every three Amarrian ships (of all sizes, but mostly battleships) destroyed.  The Jove have moved throughout the galaxy several times, most recently from Curse to the three regions they live in today.  The reason for these moves is a congenital disorder -- the so-called "Jovian disease" -- related to Jovian genetic engineering.  This disorder can strike any Jovian and is ultimately fatal.

Other factions can adapt Jovian technology for their own use.  Capsules were a Jovian invention, as were some types of boosters and implants.  Jovian ships are invariably described as extremely fast and agile.  It's rumored that the Angel Cartel ships -- also noted for their radical fast and agile designs -- are partially based on Jovian technology.  This advantage apparently came from the Angel Cartel settling on previous Jovian worlds in Curse.  And finally, in the last year or so, it's been hinted in various parts of the lore that the Jovians may well have died out from their genetic disorder.  Certainly, there has been no sustained contact with the Jovians in the last several years.

So let's start from there: the Jovians as an archaeological prospect.

CCP could have stargates to Jovian space appear in three regions: one in Venal, linking to the A821-A region; one in Vale of the Silent, linking to the J7HZ-F region, and one in Perrigen Falls, linking to the UUA-F4 region.  One stargate each would appear in each of those systems, looking very different from current stargates -- actually rather primitive-looking.  In close proximity to the gates -- some 2000km or so -- would be small NPC dockable stations.  Each of these three dockable stations would be the starting point for an epic arc: Jovian Research.

It seems groups of archaeologists and astrophysicists and engineers have heard that the Jove are all dead, and have set up shop in these locations and believe they can unlock Jove space.  They've identified a number of Jove energy signatures that they believe can be used to build a primitive Jovian device that would cause the primitive stargates they've built to fling a ship into Jovian space.  They'll provide the energy signatures: all the player has to do is track them down and bring back the appropriate artifacts.  This leads to a 20 mission epic arc that will drag players right across New Eden -- starting in Curse -- seeking out sources of these energy signatures.  At mission ten, the scientists manage to cobble together a Jove Frigate skill book.  It requires that the player have all four racial frigates trained at Level V to train.

And at the end of mission 20, the scientists manage to piece together a primitive Jovian frigate... the Jove equivalent of a T1 tackle frigate.  The gates into Jove space can only be activated by a Jove frigate, so after fitting the ship, into Jove space these first few players can go.  The Jove frigate is quick, agile, tough, and superior to all existing faction frigates.  And while you're sitting in it, you get a permanent Suspect tag.

Seems that CONCORD has been monitoring the experiments, and doesn't much care for capsuleers having potentially stronger technology than CONCORD does.  But lacking null-sec resources, they have no way to combat the problem except with Suspect tags for everyone sitting in a Jove ship... and one other thing that I'll get to in a few minutes.

Once ships start entering Jove space, there are existing Jove stargates linking the three regions together.  There are also scannable sites, with Hacking and Archaeology potential for additional Jove loot.  Initially, none of the Jove loot is usable for anything in and of itself (that changes later).  It can only be carried back to the three NPC stations in the Jove entry systems.  And the sites should be guarded, but what they should be guarded by I leave as an exercise for the student.  Some new class of Sleeper-like rogue drones is one possibility.

One thing there isn't in Jove space is evidence of the Jove: only their gates and the sites remain as testaments to their technology, plus evidence of terraformed planets.  There's also two other interesting things: every system in Jove space appears to be cyno-jammed, all the time.  And you can't anchor any structure of an industrial nature, including station eggs and POS-based manufacturing anchorables.  You also can't anchor anchorable bubbles, but dictor and hictor bubbles work fine.  You can't light a cyno anywhere in the three regions, you can't bring in capital ships, and you can't build them.  You can't build anything in Jove space as a matter of fact; everything has to be imported.

But there's stuff to export.  Oh my yes, is there.  Enormous asteroid belts, lots of untapped moons, lots of untapped planets, ice belts of all four varieties... pretty much every raw material you can think of is available, and in large quantities.  Plus all the Jove site materials, which eventually have to come out the three choke-point gates to be of any use to anyone.

As players complete more and more of the Jove sites and bring materials back to the three NPC stations, eventually (over the course of a couple of weeks), the NPC stations begin selling Jove Frigate skill books to anyone, then Jove Destroyer skill books.  There's only two problems: they're horribly expensive, for one.  10 million ISK for the frigate book, 100 million ISK for the destroyer book.  It takes a lot of effort on the part of the scientists to make one skill book, so only one is available for purchase at a time and the cost escalates after the first book purchased in the normal fashion with other skill books.  And second, CONCORD doesn't think much of the practice: they start assigning bounties to anyone who buys a Jove skill book, equal to half the price of the book, whatever that is.

Eventually in Jove space, someone comes across an odd BPC.  It's a small, medium, or large rig BPC: Jove Access Rig.  It requires a small flood of T1 and T2 salvage parts to build one, but eventually someone does.  Then they fit it to a ship.  Then they discover that any ship fitted with this rig can transit a Jove stargate, including the entry gates.  With this rig, normal capsuleer ships can enter Jove space.  Without it, they can't.  Capitals continue to not be able to use the gates.

But sooner or later, someone figures out that a Large Jove Access Rig fit to an Orca will work just fine.  The race to colonize Jove space en masse is on.  Carriers begin to be a common sight at the choke-point gates, both camping the gates and serving as loading/unloading points for the Orcas.

As more and more materials are brought to the NPC stations by any player, thresholds are reached in game that unlock new skill books, and eventually new BPCs.  Every few weeks, the scientists come up with a new skill book, at steadily increasing costs.  Jove Cruisers, for one billion ISK.  Jove Battlecruisers, for ten billion ISK.  BPCs for ships of these classes also become available as more and more Jove material is delivered.  Building the ships requires materials from Empire, from null, and a few of the materials from the Jove sites as well.  But they can be built.  And flown.  And they're completely awesome.  Jove ships don't require the Jove Access Rig: they can use any Jove stargate.  And you have a Suspect flag whenever you're sitting in any Jove ship.  And as you buy the skill books, your CONCORD-placed bounties go up and up and up.

By this point, the three choke-point entry systems are probably the sites of a dozen major fleet fights a day.  The three NPC stations are bubbled and camped around the clock, but someone always comes along and tries to push the camp away.  The 2000km from station to gate is one giant grid strewn with wrecks, corpses, cans, and anchored bubbles.  Super-cap battles in the system are constant and intense.  The demand for Jove skill books and ships is increasing daily.

Pity the poor idiot that buys 20 Jove Cruiser skill books intending to haul them to Jita.  First, that's 20 billion ISK, minimum.  It's probably a lot more as the skill book code in game makes each book successively more expensive.  Then he's got a 10 billion ISK bounty, minimum.  And he's got to figure out a way to get these billions of ISK in skill books to Empire somehow without being ganked... only he's now appearing on the top twenty bounty list...

Jove weapon skill books begin to unlock, first the smalls, then the mediums.  These require that you've trained all four types of T1 weapons to Level V, and are just as expensive as the ship skill books, and give you CONCORD bounties just as fast.  By this time the bitter-vets don't care: like any drug, Jove technology is highly addictive.  "Let them come find me in Jove space if they want this bounty," they'll say, and people will.  Lots of very rich people will kill lots of other very rich people in their very expensive Jove ships to get at those bounties.  And eventually Jove weapon BPCs are unlocked too and these require more Jove materials from inside the three regions, which have become constant bloodbaths around the site warp-in points.  When you enter a Jove system, the first thing you notice is there are about a hundred scan probes out waiting for the next site to spawn, and a half-dozen fleets within five jumps all waiting for the next one to be scanned down.

Eventually, the Jove Battleship skill book unlocks.  It costs one hundred billion ISK.  But the first pilot to sit in one is a famous New Eden demi-god.  Oh, and also a big fat juicy target.

That covers about the first year.  About a month after that, the Jove wake up.  It was all a trap, you see... they wanted capsuleers in their space, flying their ships, trapped far away from their enormous capital and super-capital ship fleets.  But I'm sure someone else can take over from here.  That's enough for now.

It's time to open up Jove space.  If not now, when?

What do you think?  ;-)

EDIT (12/Dec/2012): After I published this post, I thought of one way to game the system: use throw-away alts to buy the skill books and in that way avoid the bounties.  I can think of two fixes: either don't allow Jove skill books to be sold, contracted, or traded, or more simply, apply the bounty to the person that trains the skill, not the person that buys the book.


  1. Current available null is still massive, and empty. Once CCP change the whole sov mechanism that isk belongs to whom actually live in it, there's no need to introduce god-like feature such as Jovian space. But hell, I wanna fly Jovian, or sleeper ships too.

    1. Yep, and I want to empty those systems out still further, chasing the vets that live there into Jove space.

      Which leaves those systems open for smaller alliances to take them over.

    2. Known space is still the same old same old, though, even in that scenario. Everyone will go for the new shiny and leave known space to whomever. The only way this could work is if there was some conflicting reason to stay in known rather than venture into the unknown. What that might be, I don't know. Talented game designers could probably come up with something and your ideas are quite fascinating.

      Regardless, such ideas would be years from implementation even if they started today with an actual ROADMAP. And don't forget, the same people who were responsible for Incarna still appear to have major influence in how EVE will evolve. So yeah...good luck with that.

  2. An interesting proposal, but isn't this like creating an exclusive semi-shard within what is meant to be a single shard universe where even the 1 day old player can travel anywhere? In it's current form, does New Eden really not offer anything to interest the bitter vet?

    1. Oh, but don't you see: the one-day-old character CAN enter Jove space.

      "OK, warp your pod to the carrier. I'm going to eject a Rifter from it. It has the fitting you need to fly around Jove space. Board it and jump through the gate. Once you're in the next system, get into fleet. We're in a fight there, right now."

    2. So, you are of the opinion: everyone HAS to be in a x thousand player organization or he deserves to have nothing at all?

    3. That sounds fine but you made it sound like the rigs would be very expensive to manufacture. Even if they aren't that expensive say 250m to make a small one nobody would let a new player near one for free at least not without some time in the corp. Would you just have them scale down sharply in price over time or?

    4. The Large rigs, yes. The Small rigs, not so much. Most Small rigs only need 3 T2 salvage components total.

  3. this is a fantastic idea. As for the ending statement, maybe the jove want to use the capsuleers trapped in their space without supercaps to rejuvenate their damaged DNA, using them as pure samples to splice with their own, to cure the disease. Assuming that this takes place quite a while after the initial opening, alliances would be settled in by now, and incursion like jove NPCs could attack any ships or fleets of ships to "harvest" the capsuleer bodies. Maybe the only way to kill them is to fight fire with fire, using jove ships.

    1. I could definitely see that as a mechanic. imagine the shtf when the jovians nuke ships and capsules both (capsules, to harvest the dead bodies)

      with a smart AI, this could bring a whole new level of challenge to things.

  4. Okay this is the type of vision Eve needs and this is why you should run for CSM. I know you've said that you don't have any plans to do so but I think you'd do great at providing a vision on Eve's future. With Star Citizen on the horizon CCP better come up with a new and bold future for Eve. I have 5 accounts that I pay for in Eve. I've also invested in Star Citizen and find myself checking out their website everyday to see the latest updates. I love Eve and I don't want to see her die but CCP better get on the ball and get some new content in game or I fear Eve players on mast will be defecting to Star Citizen in the future. Let me add one thing to your vision Jester, perhaps Jove space will have abandond space stations that players can explore on foot... Great post...

  5. I don't think you've fully thought out the ripple effect of such changes. I also agree that this would create a semi-shard within the single shard universe. With only 3 of the ancient stargates there would be no way for anyone not in a SoV-coalition to enter Jove space. 1 gate for the CFC, 1 for the Russians, and 1 for whoever else hold enough power.
    An interesting idea, but you haven't convinced me of its merits yet.

    1. An alternate possibility exists: put the gates in regions where the Jove have lived before, separated by dozens of capital jumps. One in Venal, one in Curse, one in Delve, say. There's nothing saying they *have* to be near the physical location of Jove space.

    2. It wouldn't fix camping completely but what if the three grates moved randomly around low, nul and possibly even WH space? It would at very least stop the camps being entrenched and always with the same groups. Plus smaller groups would have a decent shot at getting in shortly after it moves, much like the lack of gate camps after downtime.

    3. Even if you separate the gates that's not going to stop the major coalitions from "claiming" a gate of their own, especially if the rewards are as lucrative as you suggest. It's made even worse by having the content "gated" as it so often is in other theme-park MMOs.

      I do fancy the general idea, but as you've presented it in this post I don't think it will work as you intend. (this of-course assumes I've read you're intentions correctly.)

    4. Or also have wormholes begin opening up between Jovian space an the rest.

    5. I think you're onto something here: make the gates spawn randomly, but mostly in hisec (new player availability) lasting an hour or so and thus making sure whoever is the fastest gets in. This way we would avoid the entry gates to be cock-blocked by Goons/TEST/Rushkies or other strong coalition or alliance with enough muscle to hold an entry system to themselves.

  6. Err... what is your proposal for making those ships in any way balanced while making it still supposedly superior - as lore demands?

    1. The fact that every player in EVE will want to kill one and they'll be free to shoot at them anywhere thanks to the Suspect flag they're permanently under.

      There's balance, and then there's balance.

    2. So power and cost wise it would be almost comparable to some of the better prize ships, possibly a touch cheaper for the frigs? I think that might work however if they are significantly stronger than that it might get silly since stuff like the vangel can already push 600k EHP thus you would be looking at capital like EHP on cruisers with a 60m sig.

    3. Every player in EVE wants to kill a Titan, and is free to shoot them anywhere they can be found (except LS gates and stations, I guess).

      You're the one keeping track of SuperCap kills right? How often do Titans die?

      More importantly. Cost is not a valid balance point. Something that is OP is always going to be OP no matter the price. Notice how Battleships are balanced such that a Frigate or two poses a real threat to them? That's why Titans were seriously OP: Tracking titans were not seriously threatened by anything but more Titans. Closer to the point, Tengus were OP, and their high cost did nothing to mitigate that.

      From the sound of it, you're looking for a seriously OP racial line of ships balanced by "people are gonna shoot at you" and "the ship is expensive." Given that 1 is true no matter what you fly and that 2 isn't a good balancing point, you're stuck with an OP ship line.

    4. That'd work fine for a year or two, but suspect flags mean jack shit in null and would just mean that new players would take even longer to be competitive. It also wouldn't solve blob mechanics and coalition warfare. For that you'd have to change sov mechanics somehow.

      The one-time isk sink wouldn't solve the main money problem, which is inflation through artificial injection of money into the game through things like npc buy orders and rat bounties.

      What your idea would do is provide a massive increase in subscriptions and give Eve a lot of positive press as well as solving for a time player boredom.

  7. that sounds quite awesome.. i will have to think more about it :) Right now i see two major issues : these three gates will be camped by CFC and HBC (thank you PL) then they will rent those gates... Building one gate, making it really expensive (like an outpost) can be a solution.
    The other thing, a minor one, is that your figures seem to be off. The rich guys aren't those that pvp, they sit in Jita all day trading plex, building thousands of ships speculating on the next patch, managing their army of alts. Making skill books extraodinary expensive and Jovians tech only available via blueprints will keep 90% of pvpers, those that rat for the isk, out of Jove.

  8. Don't you find it depressing to have more imagination than an entire company?

  9. Emptying null out for smaller guys would definitely be an amazing idea, but I doubt it would work out that way. I can definitely see only one or two alliances having control of all three entrances, and therefore controlling the entire supply of Jove ships and resources.

    I'd also argue that you wouldn't have an alliance giving up space in null. The guys who don't control the entrance gates would still be churning out ships for a massive battle for control, and the people that DO will be churning out ships to keep up with the other guys.

    Either way, you'll still have to contend with mountains of pilots when trying to stake a claim. If you've planned well and attacked the guy who owns Jove, you may not be outnumbered, but you've got to contend with the other half having access to better tech.

  10. Genius. But the law of unintended consequences...

  11. It's certainly an interesting and novel idea, if Jove space ever gets opened, it needs to be a mess of this kind where player efforts open up new steps in the script.

    But some fridge logic:

    1. Stargates don't work that way, they need the other half to be there already. As such, archaeologists may search for items or attempt to build devices required to activate or locate existing Jovian gates, but can't just 'fling' ships into Jove space. What might make more sense is the scientists having discovered that certain wormhole systems exist, which have static exits (obeying normal wormhole rules, but always going to the same system) into the three systems in k-space on one end, and static exits into random Jovian systems on the other end -- and both of these require special Jovian devices/Jovian ships to pass through, or they crush your ship and pod into space dust on entry. That'll make the mess much bigger. :) Further on, old Jove stargates (which did exist according to lore, IIRC) might get reactivated, but that would require doing something messy on both ends.

    2. IIRC, Jove ships... hull tank and use oversized projectile weapons. :) IIRC the lore, Minmatar are actually the race most closely related to Jove. I might be wrong on both of these, though.

    And a few reservations:

    1. The need to make the Jove awesomeness not an I-Win button should go without saying, I suppose.

    2. CONCORD placing bounties in the fashion you describe can create a truly gigantic ISK faucet. Which will be limited by bounty payout rules, but might still produce stagflation further down the line. (Imagine the bounties on one large fleet fight... Fleet fights will destroy player-produced resources but generate ISK out of thin air.)

    3. It will definitely produce a runaway inflation of bounties themselves: People will displace each other out of the bounty list so rapidly, that in just a few days, only people with CONCORD bounties will ever be in the top 20 list, and these bounties will be so high as to be meaningless, i.e. impossible to ever drain. Bounties on alliances and corporations can drain quickly, bounties on individials, not so much.

    4. The chokepoint systems can get lagged to death by litter and overpopulation if things go as you expect.

    5. But things might not go as you expect. If one super-coalition is hogging all three gateway systems, everybody else on the map may salivate all they want, but if they didn't have the resources to dislodge the super-coalition already, these will not magically appear, it's much easier to join it instead. And the advantage of easy access to Jove space may prove far too high for the rest of the map. What's more interesting is that emergence of such a super-coalition between individual holders of chokepoint systems if multiple holders exist is pretty much a given.

    1. The more I think about it, the more I think the three choke-point systems (or four, or five) should be scattered across the galaxy with many capital jumps between them, so it's difficult or impossible to hold them all.

      Also, keep in mind that the CONCORD bounties are paid out of the ISK that the players would pay for the skill books. It would be a net sink, not a faucet. Player pays a billion ISK for a skill book, and gets a half billion ISK bounty. The other half billion sinks.

      In the lore story about the battle between the Amarr and Jove, the Jove use green lasers. But there's nothing saying that's their only option.

      Other than that, great comments!

    2. To prevent hogging by a single entity directly, the chokepoints need to be positioned in such a way that it is flat out impossible to defend all of them with the same force from a non-simultaneous attack, i.e. the force just can't get there fast enough for tomorrow's battle in the same timezone. If there's more than two chokepoints, the rule can be relaxed so that it's impossible to defend more than N-1 chokepoints where N is the total number, but then the cluster structure may prevent this last chokepoint from being attacked because it's deep in your territory anyway, so you don't have to defend it so heavily...

      Is it even possible to spread them across the existing universe in such a way? I admit I'm not very well versed in calculations of that nature. What about just stocking all of them with ships and just shuffling the pilots around? I can bet some entities in Eve can do that.

      I'm pretty certain that the temptation to cooperate will be great no matter who holds all of the chokepoints, though -- see OTEC, where the number of 'chokepoints' was quite high. Also, "Our alliance has a chokepoint into Jove space. Why don't you, corp X, split off your loser alliance and join us instead?" I suppose it opens large nullsec entities up for internal strife and backstabbing, so it might balance out, but it's an experimental problem. You need to have a plan for what should happen if cooperation becomes the norm -- preventing cooperation by starting rules is actually not required.

      I also suspect bounties might be the weak point regardless of where the ISK comes from. Past a certain point, increase in bounty does not directly matter -- no matter how many ships you lose, the maximum possible bounty payout will be paid out each time. If you keep accumulating bounty faster than you bleed it off, it doesn't actually produce any extra consequences.

    3. ...idea.

      Bounties are assigned as you described, but trickle down. I.e. when a CONCORD bounty would get assigned to someone, it is assigned to their alliance, if one exists, then to the corp, if it isn't in an alliance, and only then to themselves. (Needs some protection logic against shell corps though...) By meddling in Jove things, you pay people for fighting not just yourself, but also your friends. The entire alliance that holds a chokepoint and has easy access to Jove stuff is a likely PVP target simply because killing them always pays the full bounty on every ship destroyed.

    4. chokepoint systems would most likely wind up being permanently reinforced nodes.

    5. Two ideas to be considered:

      1- What if there's a base 80% chance to get instakilled and instapopped when entering jovian systems; that base chance could be further reduced with the use of jove rigs, but it'd always, always be there in some capacity;

      2- Improving on someone else's idea, what if the space could only be accessed through wormholes, but it'd go days without any connection? Say you get in, and can only get out after 2+x days, anything from 3 to 7 days, instead of following current mechanics for statics.

      That could increase risks tenfold for explorers, and could also help avoiding any given coalition to get complete control.

    6. Maybe the gates to Jove space MOVE because of their ridiculously advanced AI. If they get camped for too long, they get annoyed (think Culture Mind annoyed) and just randomly (truly randomly in a way that cannot be predicted nor gamed) go somewhere else and then have to be found again. Eve has always lacked randomness that would make stuff more interesting and challenging. This would be a hilarious way to inject some of that into the game.

  12. Quite a vision you've laid out there friend. I have to say I'm impressed.

  13. With three entry points, no capital ships, no cynos, no deployables, it wouldn't take much for a large alliance to entirely lock down Jove space and ride the ISK fountain.

    Why would I, as a miner, mine in Jove space? There is plentiful ore to be mined in known space, all easily trasportable through jump bridges, freighters, or other means.

    CONCORD bounties are an ISK faucet. That is bad. To get stale ISK out of the system, you will want to rely on player-provided bounties, and veteran players shelling out ISK hand over fist for the sake of having new technology that noone else has. How will Jove cruisers alter the face of nullsec?

    Why would someone haul 20B ISK in a single ship? Who would gank that guy if he was carrying 1 skillbook in a blockade runner?

    This idea has a touch of "I just woke up and over my morning coffee I had this awesome idea" to it. I wonder if you aren't engaging in the practice of throwing things at the wall to see what sticks …

    1. See above about scattering the three entries, and about CONCORD bounties being a sink, not a faucet.

      The resources are in place so that alliances that can't hold sov but can successfully lock down a system in Jove space can profit from that system if they choose to. I also envision *over time* the restriction on building stations or at least POS manufacturing anchorables and such would be removed.

    2. It sounds like you've never lived in null sec. At the very least you don't seem to understand the ramifications of half of what you said. The current game needs to be fixed before they should even think about new content.

  14. I agree that CCP have to reattract lapsed vets as a short term stopgap, but the pool of potential newbies is far larger and of greater long-term importance. They can't reveal new content that takes this long for new pilots to access and act to funnel newbie money into vet pockets so directly.

    Additionally I have concerns about what this would do to the density of space. I'd argue density of players directly leads to fun experiences. For example: Syndicate, nullsec alliance home systems, RvB, Jita, incursions: all these are considered pockets of fun in the Eve universe. Unless Eve can find a way to proactively push people out of the low density spaces, adding in additional "potential fun pockets" will do little to help the game longer-term.

  15. And anyone who injects a Jove skill gets a permanent suspect flag.

  16. I fear that this kind of escalation will be hard to balance. That's something to sound to me like WoW : putting more NPCs, high-end ships and modules, getting all that shinny stuff dirty expensive if you don't farm the new content.

    It's a nice idea but can EVE really survive that kind of expansion in the long run ? What will you do in 10 years ? Add the Jove's sanctuary ? Adding ships, adding content for player to interact is great, making that content extremely high-end will kill the game because it's not sustainable.

  17. It's an interesting idea and it would keep me playing and subed at the least. In saying that however isn't this extremely similar to wormhole space? Add some choke points, t3 ships of other sizes, super expensive skill books and increase the mineral requirements of t3 stuff then your basically there with a few tweaks. At the same time I don't see why the two ideas can't exist alongside each other, even if it has a few problems to work out.

    The big problems that spring to mind are camping by power blocs as others have mentioned and having to make sure you don't wind up with a supercap like problem with the ships, while still making them desirable. That is the ships would have to be practical to kill in large numbers, so that an alliance with more capital isk to buy them doesn't get a massive and more or less permanent advantage. ie no 100MN tengus with a 4m EHP buffer and 90% resists because that's insanely hard to kill even if they cost 100b.

    At the same time how you make them desirable enough for the extreme cost is somewhat difficult. For reference see the AT ships already in the game. They are in some cases very powerful but even among rich players very few people try to buy one despite being a comparable price point to some of the stuff your looking at. The only thing I can think of is making them glass cannons so that the cruiser might do 1500ish dps but still only has 40-50k EHP.

  18. I too am impressed... but, individually and as a corp we are NOT SPACE RISH by anyone's standards (I have under 100M ISK ATM) and a query...

    Would there be Jovian wormholes? Mebbe some random holes start spawning from our W-space to theirs? Now THAT would get our interest... otherwise, we would probably opt out of that scenario...

    1. Have to say I really like this idea, you would have to keep the mass limits fairly low and the holes fairly rare to keep the choke points meaningful but it would be cool and alleviate many of the problems with the choke point system.

  19. Jester, what if, rather than making the entry points be in nullsec...what if they were in deep w-space?

    1. I thought of that too, but the problem is nobody is going to go cruising around in C5/C6 Wormholes looking for these exits; just getting there will get you killed by established WH corps that live in Wspace. Those corps would have a total monopoly on the Jovian access and these guys are pretty tough to fight on their own turf. Taking them on takes days or weeks of preparation, and by then the WH to Jovian space is gone.

      However, if the wormholes leading to Jovian space only appeared in lowsec . . . now maybe you kill 2 birds with one stone. Would certainly liven up lowsec.

  20. I've always thought of the Jove as CCP's 'Ace up the sleeve'; and that if they ever pulled it out, that it was the surest sign of their impending doom, as it were... As if there was nothing else left that they could do to save their game.

    'In case of emergency, break glass'? Do you really think that things are bad enough for CCP, that they need to pull out their Jove card already? If not, and they did, then what next, when things finally do get desperate?

  21. I agree with most of the other comments: this would make the giant, rich coalitions bigger and richer. They're not going to vacate space to go run around in Jove space, they'll rent access to alliances that will.

    As for Jove ships, unless they're produced in high enough quantities to proliferate, they'll be hoarded, rarely used, or novelties. If they are produced in high enough quantities, they'll be grossly overpowered.

    Lastly, the lore paints the Jove as masters of cunning, subterfuge, politics, diplomacy, etc., who are quite adept at using others to their ends unwittingly. The whole 'LOL J/K WE'RE NOT DEAD' thing isn't at all fitting with what we've been told about Jovians.

    As for the CONCORD bounties, have your low-skill alt buy the book, give it to you, and then, pod him repeatedly to get half your ISK back. The idea of arbitrary restrictions on the trade of these particular skill books really just demonstrates that your idea is deficient.

  22. I think the Jove area could remain completely disconnected by normal space, and only accessible through the existing wormhole mechanics. Once in Jove space you could fly around normally between gates, etc, but to get back to the rest of the area you'd need to find a wormhole that chains back through some series of connections.

  23. I read power creep all over it.

    I propose a slight different approach. CCP develops something like this over a few expansions, but doen't release it right away. Instead they hold to it for an emergency, when the game is clearly going down.

    1. Power creep? How about "power leap"?

      We don't need more powerful ships in Eve. We actually need a way to ease the current crop of supercaps out of the game... forever.

  24. A few comments:

    1. Don't know why you need to use the Jovians. Eve still has 3 other unexplored ancient races - Talocan, Takmahl, and Yan Jung - which, like the Sleepers, can be used to develop new content.

    2. Higher pricing doesn't do a thing for game balance. Remember the intro of T3 ships? They were supposed to be leet due to high price, but are now as common as dirt. I own a couple dozen myself - one is just fit as a null-sec fast shuttle.

    3. Fixed gates will always be perma-camped and the space held by the largest alliances, esp. if they connect anywhere in null. Wormholes are a better solution for something like this.

    4. Introducing uberships just upsets game balance. Supercaps are the prime evidence of this problem.

    5. Bounties don't work. Anyone who can kill someone with an uber-bounty, flying an uber-ship (the only way in which you can collect any significant bounty), probably isn't going to care much about bounty hunting. Most of us uber-rich players consider even a multi-billion bounty to be chump change, not worth any special effort to collect.

    6. Your new content will only be accessible by older players. Noobs who try to play in Jovian space, or take anything out, will just get insta-popped.

  25. I don't like content which is specifically targeted for the old, bittervets. This has been the problem with the last several expansions. And, it is the main reason why EVE can't attract new players.

    Let the old players get bored and go find some new game to play, and thus make room for newer players to come in and change the face of the game.

    1. Sadly a big part of players are now "bittervets". If they were all to leave, eve wouldn't be around for long.

      Wormholes are a good exemple of content that were a good thing for both new and old players : Class 1 WHs could be run by a new player of 1 month old, while Class 6 WHs were hard for med to large fleet of old players at first.
      And with time, when people were feeling confident could hop from a higher class wormhole.

      A principle like that should also be added so nobody is left behind.

    2. @Azgarreth - I disagree. The bittervets are the primary barrier to new players; getting rid of them is the right thing to do to ensure long-term viability.

      Serenity is demonstrating that an EVE relaunch, including a reset for all players, might be the right solution to attract many more new players to the game, since everyone would be, once again, on equal terms.

      Sure, you'd lose a good chunk of bittervets, but you'd also probably rejuvenate a significant percentage of them, too, and get them more interested in actually playing the game itself again, rather than just manipulating the metagame. In other words, we'd have no more bittervets, only vets.

      The "opening" of any game is ofttimes much more fun and interesting than the "endgame", after all. Mostly because, at that point, you don't know who is going to win. If CCP were to schedule a "reset" every 2-3 years or so, then alliances would no longer be so complacent - you'd have to be proactive, in order to actually "win" the game before the reset.

    3. New players don't need new content, they already have all of eve online

  26. Before moving back to more null sec stuff, I hope that CCP spends time fixing the problems they recently caused in high sec - first, with the new and broken wardec system, and now with the new and broken bounty system.

    It took CCP years to get back to addressing everything they did wrong with the FW system, and I don't think high sec can wait years. The unsub rate is already getting pretty high with trial and new players, caused by the wardec/bounty griefing tools.

    With respect to high sec (and only high sec), it would benefit CCP to learn to err on the side of being too carebearish, rather than too "EVE is harsh".

  27. Interesting idea, but probably too complicated and involved for CCP's current design and development staff to actually implement.

  28. Hate goons. No love lost for Mittens either.

    The single most insightful comment about this game I've ever heard was last year when The Mittani opined, "We need something to do, not something to wear."

    How's that for cognitive dissonance?

  29. Ok first I have great respect for your work and think it is an idea worth talking about.
    Here comes the but though. In my humble opinion Eve's success is also the corner stone of the issue you are talking about. The Sandbox is the problem..... Look at real life Corporations and governments, they accumulate wealth and power merely to accumulate wealth and power. Someone born today to the wrong situation has little to no real statistical chance to be the head of a corporation or government. Despite the statistical anomalies parents use as an example to tell their children. The only real check balance to real life is death.
    If the super old players with too much money really wanted to rediscover the game they should delete their toons and start over. Get new friends and live another life in eve. If you have trained every skill and can do everything the only true way to regain that gratification of a new ship or module is to delete your toon. This won't happen of course because of the real life investments that have been made in the game. Also consider that helpless feeling everyone gets when they get Pwnd for the first time. No one likes being a victim.
    Introducing new anything will only create a bigger disparity between the minority of People that move events in eve and the average pilot. New rules will always be circumvented new rules will always be exploited.
    Eve is a mean and hateful game, played by mean and hateful people. As much as I get the oh I'm too rich or oh I'm bored rut, I think it needs to be reconciled that most players in eve are doing exactly what they want to be doing. If a Sov Alliance wants to sit around and just hold their space getting fat beating their chest then it's their fault their bored.
    I think the mindset of the player needs to change. Why is CCP responsible for anyone's game experience? They provide the sandbox, but we provide the real content. I don't know about anyone else but I have tried to leave eve twice and twice I am disappointed and come crawling back because at the end of the day other developers cram content down your throat. People who play eve in what ever capacity are going to have a hard time finding a replacement. Let alone one they are willing to invest time and money in to start at the bottom and crawl back up.
    I do think inflation is a problem but there again I don't think more money sinks are a good option. The rich folk are rich because they don't spend money. CCP has an economist maybe they need to push more real world issues in too the economy. Stock markets, Banks, GDP, Competing currencies. The current system is designed to make you wealthy.... But that was because I think CCP figured people playing this game would want to PVP. But the big spenders are either SOV holding leaders who buy titans and fund stuff or market jockeys who probably can fly all sorts of stuff but don't bother.
    Here again I want to say no disrespect intended but that is my humble opinion.

  30. TL;DR My first CEO 3 years ago, a few months before the release of Dominion, told me that CCP needed to open up Jove space because the big alliances had all but cornered the market on nullsec. This was BEFORE the Dominion expansion at the end of 2009.

    As a starting point for discussion, I can't knock your idea, even though I disagree with a lot of the details. Biggest nit: everything points to the Jove being secretive and alive. Not dead by any means.

    I do think Jove space will be open in 2014, but it will be Sony's devs that do it once they gain control of EVE's Intellectual Property assets.

    The way I would do it (and no more lame epic arcs, please) would be a few (2 or 3) special wormholes that open in random systems, possibly in all types of space (high, low, 0.0, W-Space), spawning for 12 hours only before moving on to new spawn locations.... and let the players find them. Make good on CCP Now_Works_Elsewhere's promise that there were amazing things still to be discovered in wormhole space, perhaps. Make it cool, make it worthwhile, make it discoverable by new players with scanning skills.... make it universally available and discoverable to all players over a few months old with rudimentary scanning skills. A scavenger hunt maybe.

  31. A+ for effort and vision. F- for thinking CCP is capable of implementing any of this. My favorite part is the addition of new outlandish and expensive skillbooks for really old and rich veteran players, skills that will not be useful as an IWIN button in existing space.

    I think you're foolish to put these ideas into the public sphere where the Icelandic bandits can rip them off at any future date. Sounds like a damn good jumping off point for a completely new spaceship game. Which is what 50% of subbed players are waiting for IMO.

  32. Bottom line, anything you create that has nullssec access points will remain firmly in the control of the 2 major null sec alliances. You want to save Eve? Forget about Jove space.

    Remove static moons as a source of moon goo. Replace it with randomized belts found anywhere in null sec and deep low sec.

    Second step, completely overhaul game mechanics that allow massive alliances to exist. Limit any one pilot to only blue a max of 2000 pilots. Massively limit the range of cyno moves, and make a huge limit on the number of ships, or impose a mass limit, plus crank up jump fuel requirements 100 fold. In essence, destroy the possibility of large, immobile alliances to exist.

    It is naive to think the goons are not going to be jumping to Star Citizen in masses to see if they can wreck another game. Eve had better be prepared for an exodus, and the only way that works is to have already introduced new blood into null sec, via breaking up the existing alliances. CFC and HBC have won Eve, and in 2 more years they will be so bored with Eve, they are gone gone gone.

    Am I saying that CCP break the sandbox, and wipe out the mega-alliances because the players themselves can't? You bet I am.
    If they want to have a game in 2015, they better start making these changes now.

  33. Interesting and fun ideas, but I'd predict that within a year or two you'd be left with an even bigger problem than you hoped to solve. Imbalances in the game would escalate, and new players would be left farther behind than ever.

    Some suggestions for consideration:

    Its too early to bring out the Jove card, as some have mentioned. Stick to sleepers. Say that scientists think they have located some abandoned sleeper planets in undiscovered W-Space. Remember current sleeper sites, are just abandoned outposts with automated defences and such, no actual sleeper planets have ever been found (I think, correct me if wrong).

    The only new ships needed are more T3 ships, so expand those lines, instead of new Jove ships.

    Also think about T3 rigs and implants, so that even newer players can benefit from it. Require the BPCs to be sold by loyalty point venders for isk and sleeper salvage, making a nice widely used isk sink. Nothing totally OP. Something along the lines of slave sets and such would be fine.. attribute bonus, plus whatever bonus they want to add.

    Instead of 3 static entrances, consider letting players actually build wormhole generators or whatever. Perhaps start with a few static NPC ones, anyone can use, to get the ball rolling, but then let players buy a BPC off the scientists, and build gates themselves using normal material and salvage recovered through the NPC wormholes.

    Gives industrialists some part of the process to help with, especially if it is a large scale project. The PC build gates would be destructable of course. If you want to increase risk, have them show up on the star map when complete.

    The player gates would send you on a one way trip to a randomized sleeper system. I'd just use the current WH mechanics of ship mass to dictate how long the player gate is pointed to a particular system. To get back, you either have to find your way to one of the NPC permanent gates, allow players to build return gates (prolly a bad idea), or use your rig idea and introduce a personal wormhole jump, that sends you to a random system in new Eden, with a long spool up time and either a long cooldown or its a one shot use item).

    Instead of the concord hate, just have Sanshas in sleeper space too. Merge this with your other idea of letting players join the Sansha faction, or maybe all pirate factions.

  34. Good idea if the Jove space is big enough, not only a few systems.
    But I see some huge problems:
    The CFC/HBC will completely control it in very short order.
    This of course leaves the current nullsec open to other alliances. But the current tech richness of CFC will soon look like a joke compared to the richness they will accumulate in Jove space.
    The gap will widen, everyone not in the blue blob will be completely at the mercy of CFC / HBC.
    And: it is completely unfriendly for new players. They will have even less chance to ever catch up. Who wants to fly through space in a rifter if others fly Jove battleships? And seeing you will have like 3 years of training before you can also use one will be very discouraging.
    So all in all I think the situation will become ten times as bad as it is now. You push the problem to the future. Sure. But in the long run it will hurt the game.
    I still think it would be much better to just increase the size of the universe. At least double, better 5 times the current size.
    And quadruple skillpoint accumulation for the first 10 million skillspoints and double it to 30 million. At least.
    Some of the ideas could be used though: exploration could be much more like the exploration you described. Not as today: find a site with probes that behaves like a level 4 mission...

  35. The biggest problem is surely with the power blocs and the 'blue everyone' approach to diplomacy that has arisen over the years. I don't see how this stops the current proliferation of allies and mega coalitions which are currently plaguing eve.

  36. With the modification of Jove entry gates being spawn randomly in (mostly hisec) space for a limited duration, I think you are onto something here. This would be the kind of content were looking for. I can only wonder about the comments made by some individuals here that EVE is abundant with free space: in 2004 the ratio of available systems/regions per capita actively playing the game was a whole different story... one could travel for hours without crossing the path of another pod pilot. Personally I think there can never be too much free space.

    In trying to resolve this I think there are several possibilities:
    1) The Jove plan, which seems very intriguing if made available for solo pilots too.
    2) My personal favorite, a two-phase expansion:

    phase 1:
    Make Outer Ring, Curse, GW, Pure Blind and Syndicate similar regions like Molden Heath and Solitude: a few hisec havens and the rest 0.1-0.2 lowsec with good BS-ratting and ore and thus raise the interest to wonder into lowsec - a part of EVE that has not received any love in ages.

    phase 2:
    Synchronized with the expansion of this new lowsec space, create new nullsec BUT (!) with the three-dimensional view of the EVE universe in mind: do not extend the space by adding new 0.0-regions linked to the furthermost exsisting regions but rather "on top" and "under" regions like Sinq Laison and Metropolis (just an example) when looking at the two-dimensional EVE map and thus rendering the "flattening" option in the in-game map absolete.

    Making the EVE universe more 3D would also change dramatically the geopolitical balance, adding more exit routes from hisec to nullsec and easing on the choking of systems with current nullsec gates and also making more of nullsec available for smaller corps and individuals by shortening the jump distance to new nullsec and thus making the logistics more affordable. What should also be addressed is the way to make this space uncontrollable by one super-entity (non-claimable space) and rather sponsor nullsec business by allowing POS and Outpost anchoring but making the Outposts dockable for all, regardless of faction or standing. What I hope this would spawn would be nullsec entrepreneurship and virility of nullsec market activities, which in turn would result in more people (especially younger pilots) seeing this as a new pasture for them.

    As an added bonus we would have our established pirates, veteran and new alike, spreading out a bit more in search for new flesh and not camp the regular lowsec systems closest to the noob starter systems like it is at the moment.

    Summa summarum: more space to spread the server load more evenly and giving us a feeling of the real kind of solitude that exists in space (I think) :)

  37. Hi Jester,

    Great vision. Thanks for sharing it.

    To avoid the unbalances derived to the introduction of an uber ships I would propose the following, since you said Jove space will be cyno-jammed, why not include an effect (similar to those in Incursions or WH) that make Jove ships really uber over there. When they come to normal space they are just good, may like a T3 ship, very good but not good enough for the price tag.

    To allow CCP continue to use Jove ships in non-Jove space, they only have to introduce a new link module that will could be mounted in the Jove Command Ship that reproduce the Jove effect in non-Jove system and don't let this skill book to slip until they find it ok.

    As per the access to Jove space, at least for the first months, I would not activate the gate but instead would use WH. This would spread the Jove technology/artifacts/skillbooks without a single choke point. Once this is established, similar to the T3s availability then open the gates.

    Most likely at that time there will be "Jove corps", similar to WH corps already living in the space and they will be ready to take on a large coalition going there (one that will only be able to fight them using Jove ships since the capitals are not allowed and non-Jove subcapitals would be wiped out by Jove ships.

    What do you think?

  38. I think it would be more fun if the Jovians came out as uber-NPCs, wreaking havoc throughout null sec - popping supercaps, taking down POS shields in one salvo, etc. - in order to restore "balance" to the Eve universe.

  39. What could possibly go wrong? Balancing ships via build cost worked out for Super Caps :-) I can imagine the unstoppable Jovian BS blob we'll face 1 year after release. Just like Super Caps the only counter will be an even larger blob...

  40. Disclaimer : I didn't read through all of it, but the bounty thing is too easily bypassed by using alts to buy the items.
    Plus, all three choke points would probably be held by the goons.

  41. very nice dream.

    It was like reading a novel and the writer got carried away..

    [quote]"...Jove space appears to be cyno-jammed, all the time. And you can't anchor any structure of an industrial nature, including station eggs and POS-based manufacturing anchorables. You also can't anchor anchorable bubbles, but dictor and hictor bubbles work fine. "[/quote]

    [quote]".... The 2000km from station to gate is one giant grid strewn with wrecks, corpses, cans, and anchored bubbles.[/quote]

  42. So eventually Jove space would essentially be a "null sec sov plus" area with only a few of points of entry that can be easily camped 24/7 by the coalition that ends up holding the space. Once Jove space is owned, you'd have to be terribad to lose it again. Then what shall we do? Create "super Jove" space?

    I dislike this idea a lot. Creating ever more exclusive space for vet sov space holders is not the solution.

  43. Prefacing note : I like the idea of incorporating lore, prior knowledge, and the mystery of the Jove and their interaction with technology as we know it but I also give pretty bald-faced, brutal-truth criticism. Don't let it discourage you from venturing out other ideas on how to make this all better.

    Probably mentioned before, but there are other problems in regards to these massive sov-blocs : wormhole-goers.

    Bounties, sec-status...all that means positively dick to someone who lives about 1000 light years off grid. All it really does is pigeon hole anyone who doesn't want to venture out to Null to get 'da big gunz' into the very real possibility of getting steamrolled/evicted from their home by far fewer numbers than previously needed just by sheer superiority of ships/mods. And, knowing how the Jove tied in with wormhole creation, stabilization, and colonization, I'm sure there's bound to be some that would link into the constellation there; the risk would be small for someone to jump in, nab a few books or run a few sites, and zip back out again.

    Increasing the amount of lore progression in the game : good idea.
    Making items available to 'an elite few' or worse, whoever blobs harder : poor idea
    Increasing the numbers/damage/HP of available ships, based on rarity/limited access/danger of using said mods/ships : shitty idea.

    If I wanted to endure a simple numbers bump, I'd go back to WoW.

  44. I wish CCP would get their arses in gear and start thinking as radically as you Jest , instead their stuck in their 2 dimensional void . Great concept , it would be a defining moment in the history of Eve for sure if they implemented this idea..original and new !

  45. Nice try, but adding more bling will only slightly post-pone the game crash and temporarily cover up the issues with the game.

    Good point : suspect flag, i. e. more PvP, for using new stuff / having a skill injected (you'd need a way to tear out the skill to be fair...)

    Bad point : lacks balance to the new stuff, suspect flag with potential property destruction as a cash drain is not enough. Do not try to fix the game with an arms race ( was pointed out up there in the comments ). Fixed and limited entry points to new content; they need to be player-built, destructible and potentially everywhere

    Didn't everyone agree that the stagnant game needed uphold cost for large alliances and small group attack opportunities along with it ? That should provide for enough new content ( content == happy players, remember ? ). Jester, was it not you to suggest that great victory points system for sovereignty some months back ?

  46. I really don't think that new NPC content is what EVE needs to create new subscriber growth. EVE needs new tools, something radical and game changing enough to create new gameplay, new strategies, new possibilities. Some of these types of ideas aren't new: delayed local (with all the associated intel tools and ship balance changes) is one such idea. Getting rid of gated travel for all ships is another. Completely redoing the 0.0 sov system is one more. These changes would be risky and labor intensive for sure, but they would definitely inject that refreshing new player created content that only comes from introducing new and compelling tools that empower the player.

  47. Wrote about this idea a year ago: http://eveoganda.blogspot.com/2011/11/2012-this-time-next-year.html

    That was just one of a series of posts on expanding and creating new content for Eve.

  48. I know us eve players in general tend to go negative very quickly and i think thats a shame when we have folks in the community posting ideas for changes to the game and a lot of what comes out is it wont work. I would really like to see folks not just pointing flaws in an idea but also try to come up with a solution different approach.

    I dont think Jove ships need to be as OP as jester mentioned and i also dont think the suspect flag will do much to remvoe those ships from the game, however what if we dont make the Jove ships OP? after all they are not built by the Jove using their advanced technological know-how, they are replicas pieced together from information fragments.

  49. Am I the only one to think that this bounty system would only be a big 50% off sale on jove products ? Buy one, get killed by a friend, have him give you back 95% of the bounty and there you go, now you con haul all of this to Jita with a peacefull mind.

    1. Are you aware of how the new bounty system works? You have to actually lose money on the ship.

  50. If Jove space doesn't involved running in to the Clear Skies, I'm so not interested. ;-)

  51. I'm thinking that rather than rigs, implants would adhere to lore a little better. It would make Jovian space that much more risky. Anyone in there would have extremely expensive pods. But also, having the implants would come with a downside that would reflect the possibility of a type of Jovian disease problem.

    People implanted with a Jovian implant could gain SP with a +10 to +20 for each implant while they were in Jovian space. However, depending on the implants equipped, you could be more or less susceptible to the Jovian disease. The more time you spent in Jovian space, the more susceptible you would be to a plague. Plagues would occur by more compromised pilots interacting with more dangerous content in Jove space. So pilots would fly around with a new stat such as 'bionic integrity'.

    If a plague were to happen, anyone on grid with an infected player is at risk to also be infected. The more susceptible you are, the greater your chance of contracting it. If you then have the disease, that clone then basically becomes trash and all implants cease to function. Further, if that clone dies, you could lose up to 15% of your SP. Finally, the plague problem could compound and clear out Jove space in a matter of days. If a few players in the space all contract the disease, then are not killed and successfully spread it, they whole area may become a much more risky place to be.

  52. Once Dust crashes and burns and CCP finally goes back to their flagship product....we'll all be in another game.

    There are so many things that CCP COULD do, you could have fleet formations, you could have an exponentially expanding cost to retain large blocks of SOV, make 0.0 harder to hold....

    How about we set up gunner positions on Dreads?...Smaller manned turrets to hold off Frigs/cruisers...

    Add more realism to the game and nerf Titan Jumping....make Space bigger...

    CCP should also open voting on user suggestions, the three with the highest votes get implemented. with one vote per subscriber instead of character.

    See, coming up with the stuff is easy...CCP actually doing it?.....LOL.....riiiiiiight.

    1. When Dust crashes and burns CCP will go out of business. I doubt they can survive that game not doing well.

    2. CCP can survive if DUST crashes and burns. However, they will need to lay off more staff, which would probably force Eve development into an ongoing maintenance release mode, continuing to make fixes to existing mechanics and doing some minor upgrade work, such as adding new ships. A major expansion, such as Jester proposes, would more than likely be out of the question.

      We'd also probably see a "reset" of Tranquility, in order to promote the game to a new crop of beginning players. Failing this, CCP would not be able to survive for long, riding on only the diminishing returns from the existing bittervet playerbase.

  53. It appears that "new features sell better than polished content" and :18 months: have been forgotten by some.

    CCP has spent last year and a half fixing EVE. Something that was lacking for years. And otoh, while there might have passed enough time to introduce Big New Ideas, I fear that :18 months: haven't actually passed. WOD Online is on freeze, Dust has been delayed to 2013, and with layoffs thanks to Incarna and summer of rage, CCP simply doesn't have the manpower to give a Huge expansion like Apocrypha was.

  54. This I a great idea with one major flaw jester..

    It will just turn into a money tap when the large alliance blocks control the entry points and cut the small groups out.


  55. If I got that Jovian Battleship book, I think I'd have to give it to Chribba.

    Personally, I think this is over-restricted. I mean, yeah, it's the Jovians after all, but adding the Jove as a starter race would be much more fun.

    Although it would only let you do that if you had a char with 100 mil skillpoints on the same account.

    1. Even better, you can only start up a Jovian toon by converting a 100 mil SP toon into a Jovian, which would also reset your SP back to 0.

      Essentially, the process of becoming a Jovian would wipe your brain and make you start from scratch.

      You'd have to buy up the skill books and retrain the old skills, but you'd also be able to train the Jovian-specific skills for their ships/weapons. However, if you still want to fly any other racial ships, you'd have to retrain those skills as well.

  56. Fucking epic.
    Push this to the crappy CSM nerds

    Silence ikillyouu

  57. I like your ideas, Jester... but I also like the idea of the Jove coming out as uber npcs...

    Jovians deciding, once and for all, that they need new genetic material, using specialized wormhole generator ships, to rip open their own paths into systems (the more populous the better) to drop their heaviest armaments through, then send sweepers through to collect the dead crew members from spaceships, dead pod pilots especially would be prized, nullsec would be relatively safe....at first, lowsec a bit less so, highsec would be terrifying, with swarms of Jovians linking up, offgrid boosting fleets of everything they can throw out there in their quest for new resources... one that the populous of new eden has been so happily building up. After they rip through highsec (remember, this is a race that pretty well beat the amarr EMPIRE like a nickle whore) I could easily see them turning to large pockets of nullsec sov holdings..

    I mean yeah, less planetbound humans, less random ship crews...many many more pod pilots.... 'better genetic material' you might say... they'd have to be to be repeatedly cloned without severe iterative errors.

    really put some beef into the Jove AI, and make them scary. sleepers in c6 wh's are pretty stout, but make the jovians even more so. yes, it's power creep... but no culture on earth has voluntarily gimped themselves on technology... and we're nowhere near as inscrutable as a civilization that's thousands of years ahead technologically, and desperately needing our bodies to survive...

    I can't see them reasonably putting out anything BUT overwhelming force, at every encounter. After all, you don't need to be taken alive for your DNA to be harvested.

    The sansha incursions would be child's play next to the potential force the jovians could field... to the point where the pirate factions would be required to make a tenuous peace with the empire and concord to survive (allowing for pirate faction players, re: your previous article)

    make the ships overpowered, in the hands of the jovians.. with their implants, their booster ships, their nanotech, their skill systems... in the hands of a regular pod pilot... it would be 'superior' to current, but nowhere near it's full potential.

    provide a way for pilots to eventually 'join' the jove...whether through a lottery system, or a high skillpoints...

    hell, give the goons the chance to become the jovians. stroke their ego and give them a chance to do what they want to do... wreak havoc... while providing game content for everyone else. let them move, lock stock and barrel, into jove space... anyone who wants to, on the understanding that they will become jovian pilots. raid empire space for bodies, loot for building, etc.

    skillpoints get refunded, and useful on jovian skills, for jovian ships.

    almost a mirror world scenario...

    meh. just some rambling thoughts there

  58. Obviously an intriguing expansion idea, evidenced if nothing else by the number of comments generated. (More than I've seen, at least recently, than by any of your other posts. That's not a knock, merely an observation.) Like many above, I'd support some type of wormhole access to Jove space being implemented rather than static and permanent stargates, which are too easily camped. WH access, whether through hi-, low-, null-, or other wh-space, would at least let intrepid and persistent players have the same access as the rich and established coalitions. Sure, the coalitions would find the access holes via intel or paid explorers/scanners (actually a benefit of your idea, giving exploration types more incentive to scan) and camp them while they lasted, but others could at least get in early (and find their way back out) such that smaller groups or even individuals wouldn't be shut out of the fun.

    You mentioned the Jove wanting to cure their DNA by harvesting capsuleers. Perhaps Jove-space NPC's would shoot pods? Nice isk-sink there, maybe.

    Overall, though your specific suggestions are fraught with unknown consequences and exploitable results, there is a lot of good stuff here to work with. (I also agree with one or two of the commenters above that this wouldn't necessarily have to be a Jove thing if CCP is reluctant to introduce them, as there are other "extinct" races already existing in the lore that could be utilized.)

  59. The CONCORD bounties are either an isk faucet or they're ineffectual. If CONCORD gives bounties to people buying skill books from a reseller, they're a faucet. If CONCORD doesn't give bounties for second hand skillbooks, everyone will avoid them by buying from the station trading alts with trillion isk bounties. Or they'll create their own alts just for that purpose.

  60. I like the creativity you put into this jester, and i respect the guts it takes you to post it, but ultimately I think it's a lousy idea. Mainly it would seems to make eve like so many other mmos which is get the new content out, and please the players. Were as in eve it seems the new content is better thought out, and seems to change the game, but not destroy it in an odd way. When something is nerffed it's generally in need of nerffing in eve unlike other mmos. Honestly I've gotten bored of eve then later can right back in, and even though your a bitter vet the fact that your staying around says there's something about eve you just can't find any were else.
    Sincerely Jenn Ji'e'toh of eve. Have a fun Christmas.

    1. I don't think this will be the case for the next ten years though. If ccp doesn't come up with something new then other games will eventually take its place.

      I don't believe that bitter-vets will continue to come back time and time again for another 10 years if the game stays stagnant.

  61. "The fact that every player in EVE will want to kill one and they'll be free to shoot at them anywhere thanks to the Suspect flag they're permanently under."

    Sounds pretty much like a cap/supercap today in every location that they can be used. People certainly don't need additional encouragement to shoot at shiney ships and I feel perhaps that the suspect flag overstates the danger of empire space. If we allowed caps into highsec but gave them suspect flags while they're there would that make them all balanced?

    "The resources are in place so that alliances that can't hold sov but can successfully lock down a system in Jove space can profit from that system if they choose to."

    "A system" that will be locked down first will be the entry system, every time. And static gates means there is no "maintenance" for the camp as in a WH system where entries need to be constantly found. If you get around chokepoints by just making more of them so it isn't viable for small gangs of your 3:1 powered camping ships then why not work something into the WH system we have already? I remember rumors that there was some jovian tie in to sleepers.

    A lot of the proposal sounds like "Make something more powerful, then make it harder to get" which has been proven time and time again to not work. Cynojammed NPC regions with different gate restrictions sounds like an interesting start for something, but on the whole this plan doesn't feel fully fleshed out. And what I mean by that is take out everything that is "more powerful/more expensive" and what are you left with? It /is/ possible to build out rather than up, and /that/ is the direction eve needs to go. More, not bigger.

  62. Subscriber numbers have traditionally been generated by Carebears. What EVE still lacks is a good Farms and Fields aspect in space. Though Torfi has announced during Fan Fest that this would be the next of three aspects to be worked on. Of which destruction was the first and it is now polished, and crafting will follow last.

    PI isn't it, since too little of it happens in space. And Ring Mining, as long as it is glorified mining (same same just other graphics), will not be it either.

    Farms and Fields in EVE would need to allow to "setup shop". At least temporarily. For high-sec players; not necessarily IN high-sec though!!! With the option of destruction to the PvP populace, where doing so will not make the Carebears dispair and unsub in flocks, but instead encourage them to do better next time. For that, I believe, It must not be "bad luck" (aka ganking) which has you get your field destroyed.

    Suggestions ?!

  63. I think let rare wormholes enter Jove space, and the gates are fragile, destroyable, and need to be activated from both sides to get them working again. Who cares if goons control a gate. Go kill goons or find a wormhole

  64. I like the idea of opening up more content but I think that Jove space should always be sought after but never found,sort of an end game goal to dangle but never actually achieve.

    I could see your idea being applied to the other three lost races Talocan,Yang Jun etc. We still have alot of content we can explore before giving up the Jovians.

  65. I remember back in 2003 when people were told they would be able to play Jovian. And people tried to unlock the hidden path for a jove account:)


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