Thursday, 12 April 2012

Culture wars in EVE Online

As CEO of Sudden Buggery, an incorporated venture intended to make me space-rich and internet famous, I lay awake at night a dozen times a fortnight, sweating with worry that someone may war dec us, which would of course prompt me to give the same advice I give to every noob on EVE-O to my corp, which is namely, to disappear up your own colon for 7 days.

Nevertheless, having observed the bucket brigade of tears attempting to put out the Great Fire of Lamedom which is hisec carebears commenting upon the upcoming Inferno war declaration systematics changes, vis a vis. "zomg its just going to be grief grief grief", and having recently watched the Operation Nekkar video posted by w-space brosufs EXHALE. I would like to say a few things, before this sentence becomes a monster with no end, about what I see as the evolving duality of cultures between us wormholers and at least hisec carebears. *deep breath*

I won't comment too much on brosec, because you have your nerds bathing in cheetas dust like the guys camping Rancer, you have 'honorable' red-flashy corps like Heretics who'll (95% of the time) respect a 1v1, and you have the sinister stabby-back brigade exemplified by Shadow Cartel, et al. who, I must say, do their job well. The morals of Lowsec are beyond this discussion.

Anyway, on with the pontification!

Having watched the OPERATION NEKKAR video, and Exhale's blatant attempt to sound like Lord M from RnK (gg guys), I witnessed a large slew of comments in the Eve News 24 page which, basically, equate to "luls, whatevs you reckon you picked on nubs cause u fail" *fingersnaps*

Believe it or not, there is a culture in the C5-6 reaches of w-space, of seeking and demanding good fights from the various entities which put in the time and effort to live there. This culture, as promulgated by Exhale. and others, can be confirmed by anyone who wishes to go onto Failheap. It is the recognition that everyone who dares live in C5 space should damn well be part of a loose brotherhood of sorts there for the same reasons, and above and beyond petty grievances of the individual fights won or fights lost. This is about having some fights, because you should certainly be space rich after a few months in C5+ space.

Indeed, groups go to seek out fights, fair or not, and if you consistently fail to deliver, then yes you will probably wake up one day to see a dozen dreads purging your placeholder towers one by one.

This brings us to my observation about the impending war dec mechanics changes. Yes, it will be cheaper to dec people. Yes, you can grief people. Yes it will cost you more to grief or wage logistic denial on the big alliances. But perhaps people should consider that out of this may grow a similar culture of PVP in highsec as occurs in C5+ space right now.

I know this is a wildly optimistic idea; from my experience hisec corporations tend towards immaturity as organisations, and with the individuals within them. Organisations of noob CEOs running noob herding operations full of noobs who are just starting the precipitous EVE Learning Curve O DoomTM are often ill-equipped to fight wars, even when faced with a lesser number of toons. Their CEO's let them down with poor advice, poor strategy, poor organisation and poor morale boosting (eg; signing off for a week is not uncommon). Hence your noob in a noob carebear corp will die stupidly, to people he has no hope of fighting (neutral RR alts propping 250k EHP Proteus' for example) and will quit the corp and/or game.

You almost never see properly equipped, properly organised groups of peers meet one another in hisec for consensual PVP. I think this comes down to the maturity level of the people involved, inasmuch as they enjoy picking on nubs and are too precious about ISK efficiency and reputation. Its a way to play, no doubt about that, but it is odd, is it not, that people don't just fight good fights in hisec very often? This is despite Floppie The Banjoclown's assertion that hisec wars are, in fact, a skill beyond "alts alts alts spies and neutral RR" - and this coming from the Skunkworks, who do PVP via quasi-exploits and game mechanic rorts, which has nothing to do with skill and everything to do with pushing the boundaries of the game to its limits - and seeing them changed.

In the end, the new war dec mechanics will actually, I think, protect the noobs who can socially engineer an ally or confederation, even if its not an actual Alliance. Finally, the supposedly elite mercs will find themselves embroiled in wars with each other they perhaps didn't expect, as the conflicts escalate beyond the initial aggressors. We might soon see people fronting to actual PVP, versus exploit trolling and neutral RR blobs.

Bring it on.

1 comment:

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