- There would be a new type of tag that could be traded for higher security status, when combined with some ISK.
- The rats that dropped these tags would appear only in low-sec, "about as often as hauler spawns."
- The point to the tags was less about allowing pirates to repair their security status, and more about getting people into low-sec.
- The tags would only be exchangeable in low-sec CONCORD stations. And,
- There would be a hard limit on how much your security status could be improved using this system.
Greyscale cautioned that the Tags4sec system was far more lenient towards suicide gankers, and so they had to be careful about lessening the penalties for low-sec piracy, which might buff suicide ganking to an unacceptable degree.Today, CCP Masterplan has released the dev-blog talking about the implementation of these changes for Odyssey. The remarkable thing about the dev-blog is how little has changed between December and May. Often when we read about upcoming game mechanics changes in the CSM Summit Minutes, by the time those changes are implemented, the specifics are unrecognizable. Not so this time where almost nothing has changed. Here's the money line of the dev-blog:
We have had players that would rather stop playing altogether than grind their way back up by killing NPCsYup. ;-) Heaven knows that occasional pirate players have been begging for the ability to skip the asteroid rat grind for quite a while now. On paper, "tags for sec" is a great idea for three reasons:
- it creates a new profession for players that want to farm these tags;
- it creates a reason for players to be out in space in low-sec; and,
- it allows players that wish to skip the grind to do so--
Er... yes. They are. The question is... does it matter? EVE -- and indeed, any MMO -- will always have players that don't mind the grind and players that do. With this change, EVE is simply offering players the option to skip it. Yes, it's rather ironic that the ability for you to be able to skip the grind is purchased by someone else out there doing twice the grinding. But as long as someone is out there in space atoning for your sins, that would seem to be the important bit. ;-)
Let's go back to the premise that tags are unlimited use, though, because there's some interesting implications to that. Now, we have no idea yet how the market is going to value these tags. But if they are not too awfully expensive, there's some interesting implications here. Rote Kapelle has been known to go in for suicide ganking from time to time. Suppose I set up a Rote ganking fleet along the following lines:
- Pre-stage a big pile of these tags and a small pile of Taloses in a low-sec CONCORD station close to Jita.
- Do a low-sec roam of Rote Kapelle pilots from our home system in Syndicate to this low-sec system.
- Everyone sets their medical clone to a station in this system, the CONCORD station itself if possible.
- Everyone draws a Talos, then uses enough tags to get their security status to -2.5.
- The Talos gang roams to Jita. Meanwhile, a neutral alt cargo scans ships until a juicy hauler or freighter is found.
- Upon arrival, the Rote gang ganks the hauler or freighter using as many Taloses as necessary. The survivors scoop the loot, standing guard over each other until everyone warps off.
- Those killed and those with security status below -2.5 jump clone back to the low-sec system where their medical clone is.
- Repeat/continue from step four until everyone gets bored.
It's something you Jita traders might want to keep in mind.
That said, the numbers of these tags are going to be low enough that it's virtually assured that someone is going to try to corner the market on these tags, and try to do so right from the first day. So it'll be entertaining to see what the initial price point for the tags are.
One other thing: the same dev-blog also describes a very significant change to the way ratting happens today. The type of security status ratting that all of us that do it favor is a quick jaunt from system to system to system in a bomber, killing one battleship rat per system. Every 15 minutes or so, you'd then rack up the sec status for each of these rat kills with the game giving you all of the ISK credit and sec status credit for the highest-value rat that you'd killed in each system. Apparently though, this type of ratting was not intended and is a side effect of how the caching system works rather than something designed. We've just all been taking advantage of it for a while.
The new system will instead give you security status credit for the highest-value rat that you kill every five minutes, regardless of the number of systems you travel to. It's also implied that the security status credit for rats is going to be somewhat nerfed as well. So, if you want to sec status rat you can still do so, but somewhat ironically you're no longer going to be encouraged to travel to a lot of different systems to do it. A circle of three systems or so is going to be the new optimal, as long as you can find three systems each with one or more BS rats in it. At the end of each 15-minute three-system cycle, the rat in the first system should respawn so you can return to it to start the cycle again.
Given the new tags, though, it'll be interesting to see if players still do this, or alternately try to follow this kind of cycle in low-sec while seeking out the new rats. I can tell you from experience that hauler spawns don't drop very often...