Posts Tagged ‘Sov’

Peace in Our Time

Regular readers will already know that I both love and hate the Sovereignty system by which 0.0 alliances live and die by. On the one hand I hate the Imbalance of Money between the Alliance and the Pilot and I hate going on structure grinds. But at the same time, what draws me so deep into eve is a thirst for supermassivebattles between entities represented by us, its members in our Star ships.
But here is the clincher… of the last few large scale fights I have been involved in, all but one were generated by either Moon Mining or Structure Bashing. So if the things I hate generate the thing I love, surely I must love the things I hate? Or is it that because the thing I love defends and supports the things I hate I must hate the things I love? I don’t know about you, but I’m getting dizzy. The problem is that the good and bad of 0.0 are deeply intertwined together, and its about time that’s changed.
A lot of people, up to and including CCP have started talking about replacing the Sovereignty system with something new and one of the big crowd pleasers at the moment is that of the tug of war, also known as the Bottom Up Sov mechanic. The basic idea of this is that the individual actions of members of the alliance directly affect the alliances control of their sovereignty in the systems which those actions take place. For example, running an anomaly boosts your alliances control in that system. Now I agree with a lot of the goals this concept sets out to solve. Large sprawling alliance  couldn’t maintain hold over more systems than their members can actually use. Small Alliances could be pains in the royal proverbial of large alliances. Control of the Alliance would be placed more in the hands of its member than the elite select of its directors. And these are all great. Except for one big issue.
Glorious Space battles. The problem with the new system is that it has thrown the baby out with the bathwater. Yes the Sovereignty system sucked, and yes it caused more hassle that it did fights, but when the system did work, on that rare time when things slotted together in the right order; It was glorious. By emphasising the individual we would lose the drivers for alliance sized conflict. 500 on 500 man fights wont happen over an anomaly. Three opposing fleets wont vie for control of a magnometic site.  Who is going to hot drop a hauler spawn?
I’m sure some would argue that if CCP made some of the “control sites” large enough (say 500 pilots needed to complete) we would get these huge fights, but even then, we are talking about forcing PvP players to PvE, and that’s a bad thing in my books. Now don’t get me wrong, I don’t think that individual contributions have no place in a new Sovereignty system, but I really disagree with using them as a basis to build our entire structure on.
My opinion is that any new Sovereignty should complete four main goals:
  1. Get more money to members (ether forcing the top to hand it down, or starting it at the bottom and forcing members to feed it upwards)
  2. Stop Blue-balling (in other words generate massive fights)
  3. Allow cross timezone combat
  4. Allow smaller alliances to be smaller pains in the side (amount of pain size relative)
Now I don’t have a magic answer to how we complete all of these, especially stopping blueballs in this current climate of risk aversion. But I do know what a good solution looks like, and I don’t think this is it. That’s said, I believe it could be a small part in a bigger solution.
Fly in big fleets

A sword forged from the skulls of my enemies..

Just a quick one today ladies and gents. Between my new toy and the fact that I appear to have started the process of moving jobs its been a busy few weeks here again. I have also been pursuing the now published CSM notes, and came across this little gem.

Being primarily a 0.0 pilot I skipped through the initial sessions (taking note of POS-gate in passing), and dove right into the null sec points. It was hear that i came across  this wonderful gem of a feature which, if I am reading it right was almost, but not quite implemented over the last few expansions:

On the topic of creation and destruction Soundwave brought up a “neat” game design mechanic that CCP were unable to squeeze into a previous expansion. He explained the mechanic wherein there were a new set of system upgrades, “IHUBs on crack”, that were incredibly powerful. To temper the power creep, the mechanic allowed for only three of such structures to exist. Further, the only way to get said structure is to physically take it from someone else. Elise was quick to praise the idea. Soundwave continued that if he were ever to go into the issue of making an end-game objective that he would definitely put a similar type of hard-cap on it to keep the goals in check.

Trebor added that it could in fact be a soft cap that increased (or decreased) depending on a variety of metrics. Using a hypothetical example of how such a feature could be used, Trebor brought up Titans and Supercaps in general. Using this type of soft-cap mechanic, Trebor suggested that to build a new supercap would require the “core” of a dead supercap. So to build a new ship you would need the same materials and time, but also a supercap “core” that has a chance of dropping after a ship is destroyed. With that plus an adjustable drop rate of the cores in rare NPC spawns, one could manipulate the population of the ships. Two step liked the idea and talked about the issue of difficulty scaling; accumulating resources shouldn’t universally make everything easier.

Wow is all I can really say. This really is a stunning idea for a feature, and indeed Trebor’s expansion on the base, is equally awesome. An instant cure to power creep in end game content, fantastic. As is evident from some of my previous posts, I am very much against both super capital proliferation as well as the current overpowered nature of the SC beast.  However as a realist I can see exactly how this situation came about. CCP designed super capitals with the feverant believe (some might argue for ignorance) that they would never be used en-mass. Maybe they didn’t believe that eve would still be about by the time it was a problem. Maybe they assumed that they would eventually find a natural equilibrium of  creation against construction. What ever the reason, they were designed as behemoths of space, with an arsenal to match. Most of the suggestions that I have seen to cure the “Supercap issue” (including my own suggestion) have always been around adding new features to curtail the prevalence of the super capital. However this simple suggestion by Soundwave, expanded by Trebor, could, in essence go back in time to make CCPs assumption correct. An iteration on super caps which would make them function as intended: as a rarity. With this in mind, for the first time ever, I could consider myself in favour of a massive boost to the destructive ability of super capitals. Make them kill dictors, give them a doomsday on every hard-point that fine, as long as there are only ever 5 in existence…  I would still argue that there is a place in the battlefield for a dedicated capital/super capital killer ship, just to ensure that we don’t have single alliances hoarding  large percentage of the Super capitals.

Even ignoring this as an idea to limit  super capital proliferation, and taking it on its merit to allow for future development its a fantastic idea. The concept of adding a “Limited numbers” feature into the game could be a massive conflict driver for nullsec. Adding more items which are coveted (and not tied to a single geographical region of space) we could see a new reason for Alliances to clash broadswords (pun intended). Furthermore, should CCP really take their thinking to another level, Imaged if the destruction of this theoretical item could be accomplished by a relatively small number of players? We could give small alliance a method to hurt larger alliances and, at the same time, boost their own funding and standing in the process. At the moment Nullsec alliances are made or broken by the space they own. Don’t own space and you’ll never make it anywhere in nullsec. At the same time, if you want to own space, you need to have the numbers and funding to do it (for which you need space). Its a classic chicken and egg scenario, which players currently get around by seeking “sponsorship” by alliances/coalitions which have already “made it” in 0.0. Give 0.0 alliances/coalitions a golden goose which young aspirants can steal from them could give groups a new entry into null.

This truly is a fantastic idea and I really hope that it is implemented. However I also hope that CCP takes the time to consider the best way(s) to do it as well.

Fly uniquely