The matches I got to watch were pretty much what I expected. I have to agree with the commentator who said EVE Online isn't easy to watch and there is a lot of interpretation the viewer needs to do. It certainly isn't as exciting to watch as Starcraft II. The World Championship at BlizzCon Saturday was incredible! (Poor JaeDong, always the bridesmaid; never the bride. Congrats SoS, brilliant play!) Actually, it may have been one of the CCP developer guests who made the interpretation comment. Regardless, that isn't what I want to discuss.
What I want to discuss was what happened starting at about one hour and 30 minutes into the broadcast. Go back up and click on the video link if you haven't already. Position the playback cursor at 1:30 on the timeline. You should be at The Ronin versus Deepwater match. The Ronin pretty handily won this match. Who won is not the point of this post either. The point of this post is the Golem from the time it went into bastion mode.
Yeah, the tournament was on Singularity. This was the first opportunity for me to personally see the new bastion mode on a Marauder in action. At this point in the match, The Ronin have eliminated all Deepwater ships except the Golem. The Ronin still have their Paladin, Eos, Prophecy, Ishkur times two and Enyo times two on the field. That is ALL of their DPS minus an Enyo. So you'd expect The Ronin to blitz the Golem and take it out. Right?
Wrong. The Golem went into bastion mode and tanked The Ronin's DPS until the match timer expired. It lasted five minutes. That was with a neutralizer and NOS or three on it. The Ronin just could not break its tank fast enough. Here's the end of the match for the record.
current pricing of a Golem. That's 1.2 billion, with a 'b', ISK. I doubt you'll see them in fleets when much cheaper Megathrons and Dominixes will get it done. And don't even get me started on wormholes. Read this forum thread. It starts out,
Keith Planck: "I, for one, am looking forward to welcoming our new Marauder overlords"*ROTFLMAO* Who's talking PvP... that's rich. I actually know someone who's lost a couple Kronos in a C3. Marauders draw PvP like honey draws flies. There will be PvP; 'nuf said.
Rengas: <sarcasm> "I'm sure dreads will have an exceedingly difficult time tracking stationary battleships which cannot receive reps." </sarcasm> (hypertext markup my own)
Keith Planck: "Who's talking about PvP?"
After Rubicon, I can use a Marauder (not that I'd spend that sort of ISK personally.) If the Deepwater Golem is any indication, this will make any level IV PvE mission more a cakewalk than ever. I'd like to believe this new feature is necessary for running higher level DED in null-sec or something. But truth is, if someone used a ship that expensive to complete those mission, they deserve to have their pod blown out of it. The tried and true Tengu is cheaper. The same goes for low-sec, only faster. I know people who would make 20 jumps to get in on those kills any day. Hell, their buddies will hold the Marauder until they get there in all likelihood. I've seen it done.
Nope, high-sec will become the place we're most likely to see Marauders. Garret Troopers will sit outside stations all over empire space showing off their blinged out rides while mission monkey's will run roughshod over level IVs. Bastion mode is a neat idea, but I can't help but feel it'll be too unbalancing for EVE Online's already weak PvE. And there really is no reason to use one in PvP. It'll just get primaried if you dare bring it out. But it's your billion plus ISK, so enjoy bastion mode in PvP if you can afford it. And I suppose in PvE the warp gates could always just refuse to allow Marauders through. Either way, I see necessary changes coming from this unbalancing new Rubicon feature. Or, is it really just to make tournaments more interesting? I'll just leave you all with that thought.