Sunday, October 14, 2012

Crimewatch: What's in it for Low Sec?

MMOs change as they age. It is unavoidable. In the scant almost year that I have played Eve I have seen change and relearned things. Ships have changed, graphics have changed, displays have changed, skills have changed (ethnic relations anyone?) and now aggression mechanics are being ripped out and reinserted. The question is will there be a rejection and subsequent infection or will the transplant heal with nary a scar?

There will be scars.

There have been a lot of discussions about how crimewatch will effect High Security space. In fact, most discussions have been about the affects to high security space. I understand that. High sec has the most complex aggression mechanics in the game. What goes and what does not go needs to be understood clearly. I also don’t care because I live in Low Sec. I have never PvPd in high sec and have no opinion on it other than the fact that it should still be possible. However, Low Sec will also be changed by the new aggression mechanics.

The important question is about me the Low Sec denizen. How will my daily life differ now?

Logistics

The thing that I am still quivering in excitement about is the fact that logi pilots will no longer automatically gain any type of flag for repping their outlaw corpmates. I am ecstatic over this. I will be able to undock my sleipbear and scimitar and rep myself in blissful happiness my logistic pilot no longer taking sec hits and a criminal flag for assisting a corpmate to rid space of the terrible enemies of Empire space.

The ‘bad’ part is that logis won’t be able to deaggress and immediately jump the gate. While it has been a well used tactic over the years, it was a broken mechanic and I am glad that it is fixed. It may make the life of a logistics pilot harder but having an easier life do to a broken mechanic is never a good idea. Perhaps we will start lugging along a CovOps pilot to create pounces that the logis can bounce away to for a fast escape. Creativity will happen.

Sec Status

Ender reminded me (ordered) to find out if the proposed changes to sec loss would happen with this patch while I was at Eve Vegas. I cornered CCP Bettik and asked him, “Will we no longer drop below -5 if we do not pod people in low sec?” He said yes.

If this still holds to be true on patch day, without podding in low sec or ganking in high sec, I will stop at -5. My grind to stay in the area of gateguns assisting me became a whole lot easier. People say that sec gain is too easy. Really, it is not. The loss of sec is great enough that it inhibits PvP for some people. These people often have multiple activities or fly regularly into high security space. Spending six or more hours to ‘pay’ for a fight in low sec is ridiculous. Or, I can say that people should want it to be easier to stay ‘happy’ in low sec so that they don’t creep into High Sec.

How bad is the sec loss? I’ve posted my sec losses and gains many times. One of the things that we do is fight Eve Uni since they tend to roam through Molden Heath. Eve Uni has a lot of players. Eve Uni has a lot of players with positive sec statuses (Pretty much all of them). Shooting these players is like eating handfuls of candy dipped in candy. One fight can tank your sec status by 1-2 entire points. If another type of operation is planned someone may decide not to take a fight simply because they won’t have the time to correct the sec status loss. That was bad.

Now correcting would/will be much better and faster.

Now? Pewpew.

But what of Carebears?

Yes. Despite their cries to nerf PvP in low sec so that it is safer the opposite has happened.

In many arguments I’ve read over the months there has been a push to make Low Sec safer for carebears upon entry. I’ve argued that the popup warning is their decision to take the risk or not take the risk. They do not have to take the gate. Clicking the box says, “I agree to this”. Then selecting JUMP and entering that gate says, “I’m heading into what I was warned with by my own choice.”

CCP appears to have agreed with me. The changes to the aggression mechanics in low sec mean that everything is now worth shooting.

Currently, especially in fleets on a roam, a series of mental cheeks and balances are done for every ship encounter. “Leave it!” The Flee Commander sounds like me talking to my Dobermen when they walk past the bowl of cat food. To shoot the ship is to incur sec loss and GCC. GCC is a 15 minute timer in which all gates and stations will shoot at you. If other players shoot at you they will not receive the GCC flag because you are naughty. Also, every gate you jump will continue to shoot you. Every time you jump teh gate and get shot, you reset the timer on the gategun aggression. You can lose GCC and still have 15 minutes of gategun aggression. Now, when you warp off grid and return the gates will leave you be. The need to have several warp points 2-300k off of every gate is important. I have a handful of pounces but I plan to systematically go and make warp in points everywhere now. Short pounces will allow me to get off grid and return to the fight in a handful of seconds and lose gategun aggression. I like this.

It also means that the fleet no longer has to go, “Oh it’s a shuttle. Oh it’s a rifter.” Before, those ships were not worth the 15 minute timer. Now, the timer is reset as soon as we leave grid and return. Errrything goes down in flames erryday. They have removed a scant bit of protection that was created due to the innate value of time.

This may also allow the really awesome inty pilots to come back into the Low Sec game and not get popped by gateguns. This is a buff to roaming and with an experienced inty pilot a new tactic for them to try.

However, pods are now safer. PODing someone will create GCC and kill rights. Now that people will no longer HAVE to wait off their timer they will become fond of the instant reaccessibility of pewpew. Podding is often done because it is there. With the carrot of sec drops staying above -5 and no 15 minute criminal flag, I believe that podding just to pod may decrease.

Gatecamps?

This is an interesting gatecamp nerf to a particular style of gatecampers. One of the changes is that people will not be able to eject from their ships or switch ships in space for a certain period of time. I believe this is during the 60 second aggression timer. This will stop the entire eject, enter Orca, scoop ship type of mechanics that have been seen on the high sec to low sec gates. Having never had the need to eject or switch ships in combat I’m not opposed. It does not seem to stop fitting changes in battle as happen when Capital Ships are nearby.

It also makes gatecamps easier. The campers now have too warp off and come back and they are set back up for the next fight. No more 15 minute cool downs.

Pew! Pew! Pew!

Kill Rights?

I’ve had to do some reading about kill rights in high security space. As I’m understanding the various dev blogs, kill rights will be rentable. They will also be purchasable in space. If you right click on someone there will be a kill right selection like there is an info, message, give money selection now. If you accept that kill right then the person gets a suspect flag and everyone can shoot them. Except for people who are taking their PvP characters into high sec, I don’t see how this is a big deal. I assume everyone can kill me anyway. Also, in Low Sec we are often killing the other people that live in Low Sec, Wormhole Space and Null Sec. Kill rights have never mattered because everyone is a target every time.

However, this will open up vectors for those that do enjoy going into high sec. The undock of the trade hubs will become fascinating places.

New Tactics, yay!

As with any change many new tactics are being introduced. One of these will be the viable ability for any group to escape into high security space. A ‘reward’ now of keeping your sec status high will be that high security space will no longer be the land of death and destruction if a player pewpews in low sec and jumps. I lost a ship early on by jumping into a high sec system with GCC.

Establishment of Definition

When I wrote about defining Low Sec, it was, to my amusement, the day before these changes came out. One thing that these changes say to me is that CCP has defined Low Sec as a place for PvP. They have defined Low Sec as a place where PvP is an okay enough thing that the hand of Concord does not come down and slap you. They have decided that a logistic pilot is allowed to repair their outlaw corpmates. They have removed some of the ostracization from being an outlaw as well as giving more of a definition as to what an outlaw is.

An outlaw (with the assumed sec status limitations) is now someone who pod kills in Low Sec and Ganks in high.

This is a good step. It does not make low sec safer for the carebear. It makes it more dangerous. To some extend it increases the danger level for the current residents but I will say (with possible naivety) that the people living in low sec expect everyone that they don’t know (and many that they do) to attempt to kill them as an automatic reflex.

3 comments:

  1. The relaxation of kill right generation in lo-sec will benefit carebears as well: proactive self-defense in lo-sec is now possible without having to fear getting jumped on the next hauling run in hi-sec. Same applies for events like Kirith's carrier fights, cross-alliance tournaments, and so on.

    Sec status loss obviously will remain a concern.

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    1. Yeah, I concur with Druur's comments. Prior to these changes, Pirate hunting was a lose-lose situation because most small corps don't have the support for themselves to fast track improving sec status losses. This change will be a boon to what had become a dead career.

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