Monday, October 20, 2014

CSM9 - Day 168

It is not quite Monday morning where I am so the Sunday post is still written on Sunday!

From the CSM side of things Eve Vegas has been a fantastic and new experience. I have met a lot of people. I have talked to people about my views and philosophy. I wound up being dragged onto the live stream with Ali and interviewed by CCP Guard to my horror and amazement. I have explained to people what the CSM is and I have been hugged and thanked by other people for doing it.
I'll be writing a halfway through post pretty soon I think. But for now, let me try to skim over what has been going on.

This week has mostly been the Eve Vegas reveals. Many members of CCP's team has been travelling this week and things were quiet until the weekend hit. I've also had heavily broken internet at the hotel which means I have not had the time to skim forums and bring up the threads and links that I normally do on these days.

T3 Destroyers - These are not fully fleshed out yet and the first one is due in December. The immediate question I had when I learned of them and the immediate question that came to me was about faction warfare restrictions. Right now with the end stats not decide upon what size pl exes they will be able to enter is up in the air. But, this is on the radar with their individual ship balancing. There just is not an answer yet.

Glass Cannons - I think this is amazing. I love that its wild and doesn't fit with any meta concepts. Good. I tire of the tightness of the meta. Sometimes you just want to say fuck the world let's try something crazy. I am not sure how I feel about cost and availability being a balancing mechanic here. I do not think that cost scales well with balancing.

The Tug Boat - Some people have asked me what this is about and a few more questions came up in the round table. Right now they are thinking about two battleships and a halfish worth of space. It is a box to haul fitted ships so it will have a ship maintenance bay.

Edit: I mistyped the tug and said one and a half battleships. Sorry about that. I have corrected it to two and a half which is what was said at the round table.

The Higgs Anchor Rig - This is another type of item entering the game and being left to players to see if they use it or do not. But they can do something with it. Maybe something interesting.
Recons, Blops, CovOps, Logi, all of that is on the re-balance schedule. Recons are up sooner then later it looks like. Let me hear your opinions.

One of the things that CCP pushed during Eve Vegas was communication with the player base and their determination to come back to things and look them over. That has not been the case in the past and many players are gun shy from that. I understand it. CCP understands it and CCP Seagull is very dedicated to changing that. If you did not see her Keynote I think that it is worth your time to look it up and listen.

I will be writing up summaries from the round tables. I attended most of them. Other's have been doing write ups for the live streamed sessions. I can only advise you to take some time to flip through CCP's twitch channel and look at the information that has been made available.

Getting dragged onto the live stream freaked me out a bit. However, I couldn't say no. It is an odd place that the CSM has placed me in. I do not feel that it would be right to my voters not to participate in an interview. At the same time, I am more comfortable here with my text and pages and pages of words. It is a comfort zone thing and I do hate being dragged out of it but I think I kind of signed up for that when I got this gig.  It broke my normal barrier to pictures and such. I've never wanted to be known for more then what I can do and can produce and images are often a barrier to such things. But, when asked by people who wanted a picture with me I couldn't say no to them. I never expected that anyone would want such a thing and when faced with it, it seemed ridiculously bitchy to say no.

I've also seen more then one suggestion to vet the questions. Asked at events like this. My answer is no. People come to ask their questions. Their questions were important to them. We, at the round tables, did not have times when there where to many questions. There were often pauses and the questions flowed in and built off of each other. Censoring someone because their question is dumb is dumb. It is not for me to say "oh that is not important enough for CCP to answer at this social round table where people who come to the event can ask questions." I am never going to support that.

Edit: I forgot to add that going to the round tables becomes extra useful for me as a CSM member because it lets me know the scope of what I can talk about. Also, ease dropping on player discussions with developers is great for this!

This post isn't as polished as my normal weekly posts. That too is okay. Over the next few days I should be pumping out summaries from the round tables for the notes that I was able to take. There has been a general push to get those recorded and I hope that can happen and it will not leave CCP feeling constrained.


  1. About the Tug, considering that a full cargo Charon can already put 2.5+ BSs in its cargo if you contract them, having the tug only be able to hold 1.5 would seem pretty bad unless it either had a seriously massive tank or a JF jump drive.

    1. Its two and a halfm . I'll correct then post.

  2. The Tug strikes me as really weird. If it's only going to hold 2.5 BSs, why have it? As pointed out above, freighters can already carry that load, unless the Tug is gonna be way tankier. And if the Tug is gonna be way tankier, why not just change the meta ALL around and let carriers into high-sec, or just increase the capacity of the Orca?

    I realize at this point there's nothing you guys can do about it: the Tug is going into the game. But other than being a really really attractive gank target, there doesn't seem to be much point to the beast yet.

    Short version: it needs something to really set it apart from the other existing options in the same space.

  3. Sugar,

    Another thing that happened this week was the announcement of the "rebalance" of Stealth Bombers. As a lowsec pilot, several of these changes concern me, and as a fellow lowsec player, I'm hoping that you can help address those issues.

    Let's set aside for a moment the argument that these changes are a badly misguided attempt to nerf multibox SB runs. The bottom line is that for whatever reason, bomb runs were determined to be either too powerful or too efficient, and CCP decided that the ships that carry these bombs needed to be made worse in order to compensate.

    The problem with this approach is that stealth bombers also see use in lowsec, where bombs are not useable. This means that for those of us who pilot SBs in lowsec, we have to deal with the nerfs to SBs without having the benefit of the weapon system that the nerfs are supposed to balance. I am primarily concerned with the changes to mass, agility, and sig. These are significant penalties for these ships, which make them even easier to kill (the HP boost really isn't much of an offset). SBs were already rather slow and lumbering for a frigate class ship, and they have been made even moreso. I understand the problems with bomb waves, but these ships do have other uses, and it hardly seems fair to destroy those uses as collateral damage.

    What I would propose as a solution is that rather than tying these penalties to the stealth bomber hulls, tie them to the bomb launcher module. It makes sense from a logical/lore perspective that equipping a ship with such a large piece of hardware would hinder its performance, while from a balance standpoint it give the desired penalty to bomb runs in nullsec while at the same time allowing lowsec bombers to carry on without overbearing nerfs.

    Not to drift too far off topic, but another related recent issue which affects this class of ship (as well as others) is the new cloaking animation. The new animation significantly prolongs the time that a ship is visible in space while the cloak is being activated. This makes it easier to spot such ships, and possible to determine the ship type, exterior module fits, and direction of travel, and all of this after the time that the ship has been removed from overview and is supposed to be undetectable. CCP has stated that the time a cloaking ship is visible is "within parameters," but this really has the potential to reduce the capability of stealth bombers and other covops ships, while removing much of the utility of cloaks in general (if this is CCP's intention, they should state it outright, instead of ignoring the complaints).

    Sugar, please help to see that CCP addresses these issues so that we lowsec bomber pilots aren't needlessly pushed out of our preferred ship class just because a nullsec-only weapon system was deemed too powerful in its current form. Thanks!

    1. I'll ask for forgiveness for not listing the stealth bomber rebalance. I wrote this more off of immediate memory then my normal forum scanning. For me stealth bombers were not this week so I forgot. Sorry!

      I think the launcher module is interesting and I'll push that forward. Have you put this on the forum as well?

      I've not personally used SB so this type of usage case is highly valuable, thanks!

    2. Sugar, your constant willingness to listen and patience with the rest of us has earned you a few freighters full of forgiveness, so no worries.

      A similar suggestion was mentioned in the forum (not by me), but I think it got lost in the noise.

      Another issue I didn't include was the change to SB warp speed - it does seem odd to have this as a frigate class ship that warps slower than all other frigates. Maybe this could be attached to the launcher as well, but I'd just as soon see it removed as detrimental to the cohesiveness of frigate fleets.

    3. Nony- my understanding of cloaking is that the new cloaking effect is completely client side. In other words, while it may appear to you that cloaking takes longer, it looks exactly the same to everyone else. Do you have info to the contrary?

      I'll second your plea to tie the nerfs to the bomb launcher and not the hull, at least unless CCP feels that bombless bombers are overpowered.

    4. @Von Keigai

      This has been tested and confirmed by several players by cloaking one ship while observing with an alt. It does not appear to be just client side, as the observer can visually see the cloaking ship for about seven seconds after the ship has been removed from the overview.

      When this was reported in the comments to the dev blog on the new cloaking effect, CCP Darwin offered this response:

      "Regarding the visibility of cloaking ships on other players' clients:

      Game design weighed in on this and the current behavior is within a range they'd consider acceptable (i.e. not a game defect). If you have feedback on the impact of the change from a gameplay standpoint, they're most likely to see it if you post it in the Oceanus feedback thread."

      So basically, "working as intended," which in this case is not an acceptable answer.

      Note: CCP Darwin's response can be found here: