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Wednesday, September 4, 2013

A Familiar Malaise in Anoikis

This is not a recrimination. This is an observation. I want that noted before I even start the topic du jour. Some people may feel this is aimed at them and nothing could be further from the truth. Just read to the bottom is all I ask.

What I will describe has happened many times, involving many different people. It is a relatively small problem for our alliance, but it highlights a larger issue with Anoikis. The story goes like this:
Alliance Member #1: s'up?
Alliance Member #2: nada
Alliance Member #1: got a k-space?
Alliance Member #2: no
Alliance Member #1: Should I scan?
Alliance Member #2: no, we're rolling for PvP later
Alliance Member #1: I really need to get some POS fuel
Alliance Member #2: get it after
Alliance Member #1: I got work tomorrow!
Alliance Member #2: Then scan, but don't cry if you get shut out
This is not a real conversation, though I could easily go back through my logs and find several almost identical. It illustrates one of the really big problems with wormhole systems. You typically only have one entrance/exit you can count on and there are many different playstyles vying for control of that connection.

PvPers want to find juicy targets. Care-badgers want to find lucrative gas deposits. Goopers want to make trade hub runs to sell their goop. PvE players want the static collapsed and left that way so they can run sites. On any given night all of these playstyles can conflict, leaving hard feelings all around when people don't get to have fun in their favorite playstyle. It's tough to get past that at times. I'll cop to that feeling.

And it got me thinking. Yeah, I know: dangerous ground. But since joining SYJ, almost all the other high level wormhole alliances have disappeared. Our static rolls day after day, sometimes many times a day, and we see empty C6 after empty C6. The last 3 hour session I had, our static lead to a fairly heavily occupied system. Was there anyone online? Nope. It was a RAZOR farming hole. They weren't interested in PvP even though it was a Euro zone corporation and it was Euro prime time. They weren't interested in anything other than making ISK in their hole I figure, because I made three Itty V runs through their hole and nothing ever appeared on d-scan. Our care-badgers got to work and at least denied them a little bit of that ISK, but there was no PvP to be had.

So why is high level Anoikis so empty? It's been said SYJ can be blamed for that. There's a lot of SYJ hate out there these days. We've been hired to blow up a lot of ships and POSes in wormhole space. We've had a lot of ships destroyed ourselves. But how can that cause an entire area of space to become the ghost town equivalent of New Eden?

I think it's because PvP wasn't what the other alliances were in Anoikis to do. Like the various playstyles in SYJ, there are different dominant playstyles in Anoikis alliances. SYJ is a PvP playstyle. I've had to come to terms with that. I do not think that is true for most wormhole alliances. I've come to suspect their dominant playstyle is like that of the RAZOR corporation whose hole we connected to the other day. They're in it for the ISK - not the PvP. When confronted with adversity to that end, they seem to have just quit.

I see that as a major problem for wormhole living period. I know CCP never envisioned capsuleers actually living in wormholes. Perhaps CCP really did envision them like null-sec moons, something with which to make ISK, but I doubt it. I've no problem with making ISK. I like making ISK. But it's gone well beyond that in Anoikis. The systems are farmed like the Nile Valley in ancient Egypt. Wormhole dwellers would now rather collapse a contested connection than embrace it. Contestation is bad for business. I'll also cop to having viewing wormholes somewhat in this vein at first.

That viewpoint may be valid for k-space, but it's poison to Anoikis. Over the past year I've come to understand that. It is not what wormholes should be about. Wormholes should be about finding out what's beyond the next event horizon. Exploration and ambushes should be what wormholes are about. And though rewards should be used to make it worthwhile, life in Anoikis shouldn't be about farming. That's too much like null-sec these days, with their moon goo wars and renter empires. If CCP really wants to rebalance something, maybe they should have a look at this issue. In my opinion, it's turning wormholes into the next null-sec - and ruining them for everyone.

Watch Out


  1. There's a massive thread up on the Eve-O Wormhole forums to do with whats wrong with Wormholes. General consensus is the lack of conflict drivers. Too often there's more reasons to stay POS'd up then there is to head out and fight.
    I've been thinking on a lot of this stuff for a while and what it takes to get me to come out and PVP. I'm pretty crazy and have no problems throwing a Talos or something at an obvious bait or wormhole camp to see what happens, but even that is really dependent on if I feel like I have the possibility to get something (namely a kill) out of it.

    As such, large groups (6+ for me solo), any Logi or anything that uses a lot of neuts (Domi's, Armageddons etc) I pretty much go "Nope" and head home. I'd bet SYJ fleets have all 3 of those. You can't expect people to go suicide ships into you if there's no possibility of gaining anything from it.

    I think there's two W-Space mechanics that adversely affect this and could be changed to loosen things up. Bubbles and Popularization.

    Bubbles end fights after your first loss. Podding is pretty much expected out here as you know and bubbles make this way too easy. Wormhole chains are very short (what's your longest? Mines probably only 6-7) and as such reshipping after a loss isn't a huge effort. Being podded means a 2-3 day wait to get back into W-Space depending on exits. If W-Space had LS Bubble rules fights could continue on for longer. Would also mean a reason to run frigates in anything thats not a high level Wolf Rayett.

    The other is popularization. This locks you into a system preventing smaller groups from breaking up larger ones to pick off outliers. If you go look at some of Kil2's (Now CPP Rise if people didn't know)video's he does this a lot against larger gangs, thus allowing him to knock off slower guys and get fights that's actually possible for him to fight. Polarization needs to be severely nuked down to 60s at most. Give the smaller entities a chance to out maneuver a larger force.

    1. Polarization, not popularization. Derp. I should read why I'm spell checking...

    2. I agree that bubbles end fights for the obvious reason. But the problem is not bubbles per se. The problem is that podding sends us back to Empire. EVE is scifi, not fantasy. Therefore, whatever Empire can do, we should be allowed to do too with sufficient capital expenditure.

      CCP should put in a Medical Bay POS structure.

  2. Have you considered your own renter empire? You could rent out C5-C6 systems for ISK. For the rent you show up and defend reinforced renter POS-es.

    1. This makes sense to me. Warriors should concentrate on warfare, exploiting farmers for the ISK necessary. Farmers can concentrate on farming.

  3. This may be a dumb question but if you want fights out of these people why don't you just reff their poses?

    1. We've done that before. It doesn't really work. They will just ignore the reinforce message and wait for the connections to close. That leaves two choices: log off a sizeable fleet inside their system and wait for the towers to come out of reinforced, or roll the static until we reconnect. There are only about 100 possible connections so would theoretically only take about 8 hours maximum. Either way, it's a sizable commitment in time or assets just to pursue PvP. We can do that AND get paid for it with a merc op, so the assets really aren't available for that level of commitment to just PvP.

    2. If you always reff the pos every time you find one in a C6 and leave a cov ops there sometimes the timer will exit when there's a way in. Just attacking the pos may get them to form up without even waiting.

      I get the feeling that there are conflict drivers in the game but people are lazy about using them. Which is fine, it's the reason people can hold space after all. But you can't really say "if only we could get fights - well we could get fights but too much effort." The game shouldn't be built around entertaining you guys at the cost of other people losing all their stuff.

      And btw what happened to you? Thought you were a carebear :)

    3. Care-badger is the preferred term now. I don't PvP all that often, but I also don't want to see my PvP centric comrades sad and frankly pissy because they can't get a GF. That's no fun all the way around.

    4. Verge of Collapse have a really good m.o. They live in w-space and raid null. I see them all over null, they're really good at what they do and they get tons of fights.

  4. "SYJ is a PvP playstyle. I've had to come to terms with that. I do not think that is true for most wormhole alliances"

    Yeah right. I'm sorry - but this is a huge excuse whose only purpose is to exculpate your alliance's part in all of this.

    Very few carebears form alliances, and most of the big alliances fight (KILL, SSC, NoHo etc). C6 space is empty because you don't actually get any respite, put one large w-space entity in there and no one else can live there unless they are either similarly large or recruit loads of students/no-lifers. AHARM ultimately moved to a c5 because most of their core members had lives and they didn't have a huge number to call on.

    The same thing is happening in c5 space. Most of the mid sized corps have disappeared or allied up - because it's the only way they can compete with a style of fighting that involves warping more T3s to 0. At the same time these huge (in w-space terms) alliances have attracted more people who are into pvp as an event rather than a regular occurrence.

    SJY are part of the problem - as is every other w-space entity who has decided that 'ambush' involves dropping 50 T3s on you. Compared to this Blood Union are positively balls to the wall.

  5. There's PVP and there's PVP. We're always down for a good scrap, but if you drop fun-killer ships or overwhelming force (like the blap dreads one alliance parked nearby) then, yeah, roll your hole and try again, because we're not that stupid.

    It may be fun for you guys to completely roflstomp some poor fleet, but it's no fun for them, and frankly, given the logistical pain involved in getting podded in w-space, there's no good reason to take that kind of fight if you have any choice in the matter--if you have no choice, then it's depressing, and who wants to log in for that? Besides, hell-camping and fun-killing are Goon tactics. You don't want to be like the Goons, do you? ;-)


Be civil, be responsible and most of all be kind. I will not tolerate poor form. There will be no James Hooks here. We are all better than that.

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