Tuesday, May 8, 2012

The Cost of Choices

As surprising as it is, I don't mean isk.

I've been watching the Eve Online forums explode with drama of late. People are upset about Burn Jita. They are upset about Goonswarm. They are upset because of Incursion Isk Faucet Nerfing. They are upset all over the place and the forms are Drama Land.

Choices have cost in Eve. It is why so many of us become so addicted to the game. We make decisions and if our decision is right we get our reward cookie. If our decision is wrong we lose our shit. Its a fantastic combo and one that is taken out of many games. Some, like Diablo have hardcore mode where you die once and you've died forever. People play this and lose characters they have spent months or years on because the risk is delicious.

Think roller-coasters. Its a very mild risk, but its a risk non the less.

Eve gives you adrenaline spikes when things happen. Its insane and sometimes feels silly, but it is what it is.

Anyway, when miners rage about their ships exploding so easily they do not seem to take into account that they made a choice with setting up their ship. In eve, we can do some mild adjustments to our avatars (implants) but most of our time and energy goes into our ships. Each module has positives and negatives. A big gun takes up more power grid then a smaller one and may not be able to shoot things close in. A module to expand your cargohold makes your ships skin (armor) more fragile and awkward. A module to increase your ships armor thickness slows you down and makes you more awkward. Etc, etc etc.

Therefor, you pick the items that create your ship for its selected reason with care. Many times when people are building their miners they focus on what they are going to do with it. That is mining. They want expanded cargo holds to help them hold more ore, mining scripts to pull more ore in per cycle, strip miners that obtain more ore, mining drones that make more ore, etc etc etc. The side effect of doing this, however, is that the ship becomes a monster at mining and sucking the ore out of the belts and incredibly fragile structure wise.

Then someone comes along and makes said ship explode. They make it explode very easily because the pilots has compromised the ships defensive ability to increase their ore intake. They have done this in a hostile world where other players can kill you. Eve does not have PvP arenas. You can die anywhere.

So they die. They die because that is a choice that is so prevalent that 90% of the mining ships out there are as fragile as tissue paper. People took notice and started to make them explode. The reaction was not to fit a better 'tank' onto the ship to absorb the damage (because the ships can be fitted to absorb silly amounts of damage). It was to complain that they are to fragile and that people should not be able to kill them. Their personal decisions be damned, their mining ships are non combat ships and should be invulnerable.

The argument is that their mining ship (atm) costs 300mil. It costs 300mil because of the market. It could cost 100mil, but it costs 300 so we'll go with that. A destroyer, fully fitted costs around 5mil. The hull of the ship is 1mil. Maybe we can go as high as 10mil to round it out.

That 10mil isk ship blows the 300 mil isk ship out of the water. The 300 mil isk ship happens to be a miner with zero defensive capabilities (by choice). The 10mil isk ship is all offense and blows up to Concord (the NPC police who Punish).

This is not fair, according to some.

Its choices... perhaps if they did not have a choice to defend themselves with a nice, solid tank, I could agree. However, kill mail after kill mail after kill mail show that they have done nothing to protect their ships.

But its not 'fair'.

Sigh.

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