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Lunchtime Musings : Mirror, Mirror

"Sugar, when are you going to push for bombs in low sec? I want to bomb things."

Such was a piece of my talk over the weekend.

All space is not created identically with all other pieces of space. Ideally, we want them to be different so that we have different places to go. Fantasy games will have forests and rivers and oceans and hell and heaven and chocolate factories. Eve has different types of space. I had this argument several times this weekend. The four (and a half) types of space that we currently have all work together. They have their pros and their cons, giving players choices and distinct features that they do or do not enjoy. When you live and fly and have had your experience in playing Eve matters. Not because one is better than the other but because they are all different and those differences will dictate your game view.

I once spent a lot of time bristling and growling when people bad mouthed low sec. How dare they call it a kiddy pool? How dare they call it a stepping stone for null sec? How dare they say only corps that could not succeed in null go to low sec. I've written about these grievances, huddled in my station in low with my darkened security status and glowing eyes. I did not want their area of space. I did not want the mechanics they lived with. I did not want sov. I wanted what I had. The assumption that I settled was beyond me.

Now, I've grown up some and taken my battle to a higher meta level to have low sec acknowledged as the unique area of space that I've always believed it to be. Because of this, my concept of Eve is grounded in the individuality of various types of space. I've even fought against the idea of making all of low sec, faction warfare. Why would we have everything the same when things are so wondrously different?

Different viewpoints are wonderful. It makes the game interesting. However, we have a habit of bringing our ideal game view with us when we change what we are doing in the game. This can be both good and bad and it is not something that i am exempt from. I jut try to notice if it is happening so that I can control the raging desire to edit core game mechanics to what Sugar likes to do and only what Sugar likes to do.

While all space is not created to be the same.I will not use equal because like balance it leads to the assumption that things should be the same. It is the differences in the various areas that bring their positives and their negatives. Yes, I said negatives. If you can only do a level of a game with the ability to survive that level, is it bad? To bring that into Eve, if mechanics work in some areas of space and not others, is that bad? Sometimes, something work better in some places when doing other things. One simple challenge that Eve allows us is that we can continue to try to do things in the method that we want to do them because few of the differences are hard coded into the game. But we need hard walls to brace against.

I believe that should be treasured. Low Sec is different from null sec because of gateguns and sec loss. There are no bubbles and there are no bombs. Yet wormholes are different from null sec even thought they share bubbles and bombs and no sec penalties because of the lack of gates and the mass limitations. High sec differs from low sec although they are both empire space because of Concord and Faction Police responses to aggressive actions as well as the increased penalties of security status loss. Some are cool. Some are annoying. All create the terrain of the area.

Finding myself in another argument (for it was a weekend of such things) about risk between null sec and wormhole space, I thought, "Why am I in this argument? I don't really belong here." However, I also pointed out that the two areas of space are different. Both carry separate types of risk that a player will have to deal with and potentially mitigate. But the key word is potential.

Out of all of our areas of space there is one common factor. Players are often our most dangerous and risky interaction, But that danger and risk is a potential. It is not hard coded into the game. Players are a random factor. They may or may not warp to your site. They may or may not hunt you down. They may or may not....

We can make tools and add features to mitigate and work for and against the presence of players. A site will despawn and respawn elsewhere to be done again in a region. However, it will also carry with it a random change of dropping loot. In a wormhole the sites may spawn and sleepers may pour forth from the sky but there will only be so many sites in a system and once harvested the players will have to decide to make a new series of decisions to get more, to wait, or to make another series of decisions to reap the end reward of their work and sup upon the succulence of sweet, sweet ISK.

I like gateguns because they force low sec to have choices. The choices may not be what we want. They absolutely inhibit casual frigate fighting. Considering that there is all of null sec and wormhole space to engage in such things, as well as the complexes of faction warfare spare I think that forces an interesting dynamic. It makes fleets make decisions. It means that interceptors are a committed choice. It gives more meaning to being an outlaw. As annoying as gateguns are and as stupid as they may seem to those who enjoy life in fully lawless regions, without them the entire dynamic of low sec would shift.

The case was made to me, in that earlier null sec vs wormhole argument I did not belong in, that DED complexes have gates and wormhole anomalies do not. I was not sure why that mattered but it was a equation about the potential risk vs reward of the end result of both things. In that one bubble of comparison it might make sense, but there is rarely a moment when Eve is a small direct bubble of comparisons for an event or action.

Things cannot be observed in a void and acted upon in a void when they do not exist in a void. Direct comparisons are rarely fair to the topic. The use of a Legion in high sec, low sec, wormhole, and null sec will always be different. The first time I saw a Sleipnir in high sec I had to check to see where I was. But that did not lead me to decide that the Sleipnir was broken because it was not a common ship in high sec.

We are approaching a lot of future changes in Eve. And as we approach those changes we will have to embrace change and shake off encrusted habits. But, as we do that and look to the future we have to remember to preserve the past. There is the type of past that you can bulldoze down and there is the type of past that contains the culture and diversity o f the players and areas that makes those things fascinating.

Nothing can touch change and not be changed, but the core can still be preserved and must be even in our most frustrated and bitter moments. Even when we are most excited and ready for the future.


  1. At some point we just may have to coin a few terms for such behaviors. I propose . . .

    Spacetriotism: cultural attachment to one's particular space and/or devotion to that space

    Vacuum Chauvinism: When one takes Spacetriotism a little too far

    1. Ethelitist, Ethercentric, Etherism, Secelite, Seccentric, Secism… I love it!!

    2. All space is equal, but some are more equal than others.

  2. My most sincere apologies Sugar. The argument began because of J010556 (I think), a shattered C4 Pulsar with lots of gated Sansha sites, and a Golem that was running those sites and talking in local.

    This new system seemed like a good way to quell the "get rid of local in nulsec" crowd to me, a new terrain if you will. Something like a glade in a forest.

    I feel like a few, lower paying, gated sites would be fair compensation for the changes that have come to w-space.

    So, I was upset to hear that gated sites in w-space were being frown at.

    I was also upset because this was the first time I fully understood what the combined changes will bring to w-space. I don't disagree with the changes, but may favorite play style has no place there now. Risky lone wolf PvE in w-space may not have been the smartest idea before, but now it will be incredibly stupid. On the bright side, I might enjoy trying to kill those that are that stupid.

    1. Never feel sorry for wondering and sometimes I'll disagree but it is a good argument. I can't just say no without broader reason. Your frustration is also understandable. It sucks to be the one nerfed for 'reasons' even inadvertently. I don't think the solution is is in that. It does not mean that the problem does not exist and that a solution may not be out there.

      The conversation has to happen. But, I have to be able to say why I disagree not just that I do. Or, my belief in accountability and such says I do.

    2. Wormholes do have a "gated" site of sorts already. If you are feeling extra paranoid then only run wormhole Data and Relic site.

      Living in a C3 for quite a bit I found myself paranoid often. I would farm the sleepers from these sites knowing that I could only be killed if someone probed me down. Dscanning for probes is the same as dscanning for people who are decloaked by gates!

    3. I've surprised a few people lately who thought that and I wasn't even hunting. I can scan all those sites down and then come back up to sixteen hours later, or even log off in the system. Watching for probes won't save you any more.
      Even with a gated site in w-space, I could find it before you, and wait inside. Without local you'll have no idea what might be in that site.
      If you're feeling paranoid in nulsec and lowsec you could just never run a site with non blue in local.
      I think gated sites in systems without local could (and have) fill a place on the risk/isk/time spectrum.

    4. Interesting... and while I grant you the lone wolf PvE only lifestyle would be a bit hard in Anoikis... it is not undoable, just hellishly riskier is all, of course, of course the rewards are commensurate...... As Endo said, run only the probable sigs... no matter what ship comes in you would have to be scanned down and probes did not get the dscan immunity... so same as before, miss the probes and pay the price, catch em on scan and safe up... of course, if someone already has em scanned... well, it's Anoikis... it's supposed to be scary in here... =]

      But gated sites in Anoikis??? Really? Personally I see no value other than a perception of safety... and a false perception at that... in a place where the numbers at the top of the screen are a deep red -1.0... (not just 0.0 or some other color...) It's Negative Sec man... the deadliest space accessible from New Eden...

      No, gates of all types are for Empire space, not for the hairy wild wild west... =]

  3. Sugar said...
    "We are approaching a lot of future changes in Eve. And as we approach those changes we will have to embrace change and shake off encrusted habits. But, as we do that and look to the future we have to remember to preserve the past. There is the type of past that you can bulldoze down and there is the type of past that contains the culture and diversity o f the players and areas that makes those things fascinating."

    CCP Seagull said...
    "When we add things into Eve it is a form of behavior shaping. Our responsibility is to make a rule set and a landscape that makes it as good a game as it can be for many people. If the environment is unbalanced it is our responsibility to try to correct the flaws or change them and not be afraid because they have always been broken.

    It is not a simple system. We have avoided changes for fear that changes are bad. But we want an interesting and viability world for as many people as possible so we have to make things change even if some things won't be liked."

    And over on Nosy's blog in Circadian Seekers In The News we find this gem...
    "CCP has stated (I believe at EVE Vegas, but I don't have a link) that they do not plan to put all changes in the patch notes in the future. Players will need to pay attention to how objects and mobs react in-game as well as read other sources of news like the game world news. If I read the words with my tin foil hat on, the message is, 'We're not going to spoon feed you everything. What do you think this is, WoW?' "

    And I myself have said Too Much Talk Talk, Not Enough OMFG… wherein I opine...
    "I actually do wish CCP would reintroduce the wondrous element of DISCOVERY, bring back an air MYSTERY and add a touch of THE UNKNOWN to our game. Oh maybe not on every planned, proposed or considered change and/or addition (but in truth would that necessarily be ‘bad’? Really think hard on that for a bit before you answer…) but to make some, mebbe lots of the smaller but impactful, additions or changes… like say the burner missions and/or frigate only wormholes… as UNANNCOUNCED changes and/or additions… and allow us to DISCOVER them all on our own. Imagine being offered a mission or scanning down a wormhole NO ONE has EVER even heard of before… Now THAT would be something wouldn’t it?"

    All of these seem to go hand in hand quite nicely don't they? =]

    Now if we could just persuade CCP to remove the Discovery Scanner and put the thrill of actually EXPLORING back in Exploration...

    Hey, an old Anoikis Merc can dream can't he?

    1. "Now if we could just persuade CCP to remove the Discovery Scanner and put the thrill of actually EXPLORING back in Exploration..."

      This? This needs to happen. Now. I've always found it infuriatingly moronic how the big "exploration expansion" actually removed more exploring than it added.

  4. "We are approaching a lot of future changes in Eve. And as we approach those changes we will have to embrace change and shake off encrusted habits. But, as we do that and look to the future we have to remember to preserve the past. There is the type of past that you can bulldoze down and there is the type of past that contains the culture and diversity o f the players and areas that makes those things fascinating."

    Well, if you're a high SP carebear who dwells in highsec, the only direction for change is to the worst. It's a comforting assurance that, whatever CCP does for highsec, it will mean shoving shit from the rest of space into highsec (like, destructable POCOs for PvP) because, hey, it's the shit everybody else does and loves!

    So to a retired highsec dweller, the promise of changes tranaslates as "Highsec is better now than it will be in the future". God forbid CCP from taking at face value that some people don't bloody want to blow player ships with their own hands but certainly would appreciate other ways to mess with those PvPrs.

    "But, but... you can kill a CODE ganker anytime! They're -10 sec!" "FUCK YOU, I don't want that shit! I don't want to play the game in HIS terms! What I want is to seize his ship when he docks in MY system, and then get the gateguns to open fire as soon a he peeks into MY side of the gates! So HE plays the game in MY terms for a bloody change!"

    So, let's see what the future inflicts upon highsec, the only space area whose motto is "We're better today than we'll be tomorrow, so brace your jimmies".

  5. "... chocolate factories."

    I am seriously playing the wrong game!


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