Monday, August 31, 2015

Perspectives

It is often amazing how badly travelling plans can go. Our return trip home has bumped into some unfortunate delays. Those delays are irritating, true. Still, one rolls with the punches and keeps going. Or at least, that is my outlook.

I've checked in on things twice. We wound up not spending the money for service on the ship. I found myself not particularly unhappy with that in the end. I wanted internet but not the Eve drama that woukd have come with it. It seems that stuff has happened over the last week that made me happy to have a bit of distance from the game. This was my first away from Eve vacation since I started the CSM.

Time and distance both bring perspectives. I didn't write much about the game. I instead observed my surroundings and came up with a colossal amount to chew over in the next few weeks. The part I did think about was the people. I spent a bit of my time discussing people and their motivations with my husband. We have very different views of people. It made for some interesting discussions. I need to talk to him more about these types of things.

Also with distance comes some healing. I took some deep breaths I did not know that i hadn't been takening. Developed some scar tissue over some parts. Maybe I will be a bit tougher having been able to step back. I was getting very worn.

People are fascinating if exhausting. Watching the people on the cruise ship from the first day to the last was an interesting look into moods and behaviors depending on enviorment. Eve is its own enviorment. A virtual world with the same reality as the week on a curise ship. It is a place that you can be something you might never ben normally. A place to try things out or just be yourself.

It has been an interesting week of thinking and perspectives. But, now I'm back.

Saturday, August 22, 2015

CSMX - Post #25

Hi there! Welcome to the weekend. In this week stuff has happened and will be happening and we're going to go over most of it before I run off to my vacation.

It is patch week. There will be some sov tweaks.  I don't get the feeling that this is going to make people utterly happy  and Agis sov the sov of out hearts.  It is a step and hopefully we can get to a better place. The null talks continue.

Red makes it go faster.  More skins have been added buy they don't belong to a shipyard. Instead CCP had listened and is trying out designed for the sake of it.  This heavily focuses on Calder and Minmatar this time around giving them a few more choices than red, reddish, red brown...etc. I'm pleased with this direction. Im not atill sold on prices but I am happy to see the more open minded  approch to ship SKINs.

The lore is moving along. The Empress seems to be dead and there are fascinating  events on SiSi. I deem this good.

Last week Corbexx and I held a structure doings.  Mike did the recording for us.  That went well and presented a bunch of feedback and problems mostly wormhole focused to the structure team.  I'm also working on my structure Q&A but there are only but so many hours in a day. Piece by piece we're working on this. Thank you for participating.

Also on my immediate  plate: I'm now able to do some public fact finding for facton warfare. I have a thread up on the forum about started needs for faction warfare.  I know that it is not what everyone may want to talk about but it is very much what I need to fact find about right now. I need feedback and ive gotten some good stuff but this is a very open floor right now. Personal expierences, friends expierences, as recruuters and members I'd like it all.

Sorry about the lack of links this week. My hotel connection  is not the best. The summit is around the corner  and there seems to be more to do than ever.

Friday, August 21, 2015

Buzz, Buzz, Buzz!

Somewhere between tonight and tomorrow I will write my weekend post. Hopefully. I guess I should get to work on that tonight now that I think of it. My plane leaves tomorrow morning and I am going to leave my laptop at home for the first time in forever.

But do not despair. I'm not leaving my technology behind. I'm going to use my tablet as my writing platform and see how that functions. If it works well enough with my writing for Downtime Hours, I may do so again in the future. My laptop is quite heavy for it is a gaming laptop but I have not had as much time for games on my travels as I used to.

This is one of the first times that I have not prewritten a lot of stuff for my blog when I go on vacation. I've been busy! Busy, busy, busy! Writing other things. I've discovered that there are but so many hours in the day. I'm somewhat horrified at that discovery and that I've managed to be busier than last year but I have. For those who have been looking the results have been showing up here and there.

But for myself, I missed the destruction of Empress Jamyl's Avatar. Chella had moved to Amarr just to catch the live events. I was busy getting a pedicure with my husband at the time and I missed it. However, my toes look fantastic and so do his.

I did decide to undock and go and see if the wreck was still there. I've been a creepy spectator in this event.


I expect we will see a monument next. I'm rather excited to see what they decide to do. I did learn that the lights in the destroyed wreck pulsate. It was rather cool.

For those like me who are lorecurious, here is a video of someone at the event. I think this is a super fun path that the storyline is taking. The static nature of things is shattering and change is coming. All sorts of people are dying and being replaced. I'm enjoying the ride.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

In Which I Mix My Parables

During our soundboard about structures for a moment we wandered into the topic of small groups attacking larger groups. For a moment I thought of the well worn example of David and Goliath. However, I didn't like it. It did not feel particularly creative. Also, as I spun the topic around I saw that the analogy didn't fit. David after all killed Goliath against the odds and I wasn't thinking about the simple formula of small group taking out larger as if it is a divine right.

My thoughts revolved around the small groups having the ability to bite chunks out of the large ones. To use the strengths of small numbers to make an impact. During my time in Molden Heath this often happened. I enjoyed it more than I enjoyed fighting draws with familiar locals. It was often frightening. I regularly had to take a deep breath and tell myself that not even the loss of every ship in my hangar would make me back down.

Defiance has an appeal to me that few other things do. I don't want to own space. I'm not competitive by nature. I'm not territorial. Insulting me in local tends to leave me puzzled. Do they mean it? It doesn't even make any sense. But it is defiance that keeps me running. It may be screaming into the darkness or whistling into the wind but it is an aspect of Eve that I very much enjoy.

Of course, I've kind of said that my favorite way to play is to be a torn in someones side for the sake of being there. It is why David and Goliath miss the mark. The goal is not to topple and replace and then maintain the throne. For many that means content and it brings content as well as tangible goal points. But, in this game of dreams and created pathways there is just a daily life to enjoy.

My thoughts have wandered away from its birth spot in the discussion of how smaller groups take out larger structures, or at least have an opportunity to attack them. That is an opportunity that is decreased depending on how structures have programmable vulnerability windows.

The question was raised, should the little guy be able to take out the bigger group? I don't think the game should be set up to be David and Goliath. I do want to continue being able to take that bleeding hunk out of the big guys calf.

I don't know why. It is just how I like to play. I don't desire to be the best or most notorious. I have no draw to kill boards or fame. I just want to putter through space, defend myself when I need to and attack if i want to. In many ways I enjoy not having a reason other than not having a reason.

I'm pretty sure when i first sketched this out I had a different thought in my mind. Ah well. Self discovery is useful.




Monday, August 17, 2015

Repainting

Once a year I normally change the face of my blog. I do so because I like playing with the colors and themes. Occasionally, I try to improve the look and clean things up. I tried stopped doing that when I ran for the CSM so that my blog would stay familiar.

While familiar I've not been happy with how its been laid out for a while. I waffle between something simpler and something more modern. Maybe modern and simple. I've not tried anything because I've not wanted to face backlash. It is a somewhat artistic thing for me so negative reactions is a bit disappointing.

I've stuck with what I have for a few reasons. I've tried not to create a click bait template. You log into the main page and you get the entire post. In many ways the goal has been to be hands off but I wonder if I should craft more of an identity.

Self reflection is what it is. I've been writing about Eve for almost four years now. I've written 1,732 published posts and I have 138 drafts sitting around. Some of those are pretty old and I should probably delete them. I often have ideas and write myself little outlines while at work to capture it and see if it blossoms into something more.

I've been debating changing the name. At the moment I am not in low sec. I sit on a high sec boarder because it is convent. Actually, I'm in Jita at the moment but my stuff is on a boarder. I plan to go back to low sec once I figure out what I want to do with myself. I do wonder if my blog name restricts me. It is the blogs second name after all and one I came up with to define what I was writing about.

But my writing has become a thing of its own. I write about whatever comes to mind. That may be living in low sec but often it is a reflection fo what is around me or the thoughts that I have. Then there is the CSM but the CSM is not who I am as an individual. Not in the same way that I used to identify as a pirate.

Can I even call myself such a thing? I've walked away from PvP. Not because I have anything against it but because I want to reevaluate why I do what I do. Do I PvP for myself or have I been doing it as part of my effort to fit in and become valuable and useful to others? I haven't found that answer yet.

Anyway, back to the blogging thing. A lot of people use blog readers. I'd not restrict what they downloaded. I have no idea how many people even come to my website vs how many read it. I may be over thinking it. I often do. But for now, I'm looking at templates and debating what I do and do not like from a website.

Something simple and clean, easy to read and uncluttered is my goal. I think I had planned to wait till the CSM was done but, well, I think instead I'd like to repaint the house so to speak and freshen things up. It may be time for it.

Friday, August 14, 2015

CSMX - Post #24

The structure development blogs exited translation limbo and were released on Thursday. There are two. One about assets and one about sieges. Read them please. These are not the final words they are just the direction that we are headed. Feedback is super important here with the timers and the treatment of assets.

At Rob Kaichin's request I have created a condensed fact sheet about what we currently know about structures. This is not everything that will happen. My goal was to take the common questions that are answered in the dev blog and bring them out into the open with simple questions and trains of thought. This project took a bit to write up and get ready for the public. I've gotten it approved by CCP Nullarbor and CCP Yitterbium who worked with me on fact checking and cleaning up outdated information. I'm super pleased with it. It has had the side effect of opening up some new areas to discuss whole highlighting areas that we still have very little public knowledge of.

How do I feel about structures? I am excited about them. I am also worried because we have so many variables in play. The current vision has many good parts but I feel that there is still a lot of work to be done. The loot dropping, or I should say lack of loot dropping, bugs me a lot. I feel that wormholes take a much harder hit to this. I really, really like getting other peoples stuff. I've been out and about exploring players ideas of what looting means to them and if having a similar compensation in things like minerals and components will satisfy them or not. We (meaning Corbexx and I) are very concerned over the changes listed in these blogs to wormhole space and we are working on continued communication of those points. We want the unique environment of wormhole space to stay the unique environment that it is.

On Wednesday we attempted to have a jump fatigue talk that tried to accomplish to much. I believe that it went poorly and I address my mistakes, failures, anger, and unhappiness later in this post.

The soundboard is here. I use Mike's version which has the recording notice on it. I consider his version to be neutral ground. There are several other recordings up of various quality if you'd like to find them.

CCP Mimic wrote up a summary in the wake.

CCP Larrikin has posted the feedback thread for jump fatigue. In that he has some metrics that were asked for in the original thread and during the discussions. One is on black ops kills and losses. The other is a chunk of capital ship data. While the thread is large and violent it is being read.

***

Now, let me release my inner Kraken. I'm going to rage out for a moment.

Did I think I had a hand on things? Yes. Did that still make it a smooth experience? No. I was drowning in information and trying to parse it. I can write out the reasons for a few hours. I made mistakes and attempted to create a format that needs a lot more universal agreement of goals and behavior. Did I set this up to bait the developers into a position of being treated poorly? No. Did I want to get questions in front of them so that people could share how jump fatigue had impacted them for good bad bad? Yes. Did I steadily lose control of the session? Yes. I've received dozens of critiques now on what I did wrong and all of the mistakes I have made.

I walked away from the effort of communication perhaps the most bitter that I have been since I started this CSM thing. I'm discouraged that vicious and hateful communication is praised and rewarded. I'm disappointed that my idealized vision of clear question and answer and discussion failed so spectacularly and did not have a chance to take off. I believed people would take the opportunity for what it could give them simply because that is what I would have done in the same situation.  I very much want people to speak up. I've never asked anyone to lie or say they loved what they did not. I cannot speak for and support you if I don't know what you need and want.

I am so angry with myself for not stopping things when they got ugly. I let my very idealistic approach to the CSM make me hope that it would get better. I badly want to give people what they want. I want to build bridges of communication and access. I want players to be heard and CCP to take the time to listen. I actually don't like that I am idealistic but in this, I am. It leaves me shattered and doubting myself and what I am trying to create when I sit down each evening.

I was only focused on my disappointment with myself until people came to me and told me that what happened was okay and expected. I should have accepted that it would be bad. I cannot wrap my mind around this. The goal of my effort was for things to go well. Why else was I doing this? I was supposed to be consoled that there was an agenda to force the issue and create the environment and because it is larger than me and some groups play hard there was nothing I can do.

I don't accept any of it.

Being civilized does not mean kissing up and never entering negative topics. Honest does not mean being a jerk and abandoning any contaminating civility. It is not acceptable to treat people like crap. To excuse it as, "passion for the game" or "people really care" is enabling unacceptable behavior. It is not acceptable to behave that way and it should never be excused as "that's just how player's are." Or even worse, "They are gamers. We cannot expect more of them." I expect better of people. That is not how the player's that inspired me to give two years to promote their wants, hopes, and dreams behave. It is not how the people who have stepped forward to create all the good parts of the community are. I won't let this define everyone. It isn't an unfortunate side effect that we have to live with. Its unacceptable. Its disappointing. Its ripping apart your own things and complaining that they are broken.

I will never accept that is just how things are. naivety. Tilting at windmills. Windless causes. I'm fine with all of that.

/end rage

***

So, what next? At that moment Thursday night as everything spiraled into a vortex of irreconcilable mess, I wanted to throw my hands up and swear that I'd never do it again. Unfortunately, that isn't an option. We will keep going. Corbexx and I have gotten the next soundboard together. This is another one on structures with CCP Nullarbor. It will be on August 18th, 2015 at 1700 GMT. If you wish to join in sign up. We're going to become very strict on attendance and keeping things civil and productive. If I had to suffer through these mistakes I am damn well going to learn from them and do better in the future.

Thursday, August 13, 2015

The Past's Future

These days with the weight of the CSM tag over my head I often avoid contentious topics for fear that someone will scream that the sky is falling because the CSM said so. But wow, anger just clears the mind! Today, I don't care. I'm going to indulge myself.

Last night, after everything, I came back from my appointment and chatted with some of the people that were still hanging around. I was asked, "Sugar what do you think about supers and links just being deleted from the game."

The topic comes up sometimes. Can these things be fixed? Can they ever be balanced? Should they just be deleted?

Twelve years ago, a game called Eve Online was created. It was created with a persistent universe with a vertical balance that quickly tilted towards the horizontal. It had many grand visions of epic battles fielded by thousands of players on a single server. It would be a place of persistence. A world with real history. It would evolve into a player driven story unlike any other.

I like that about, Eve. I don't take the idea of removing anything about the game idly. Some things have been removed but more often changes are made that move away from a direction but leave history behind them. It may be ugly for the database but it is beautiful for the game story. That story was utterly important to those who developed it and lived for it.

The conversation for Titans started as early as January 2005. That is a year and a half after release. The introduction of supers into the game happened at the end of 2005 with the release of Eve Online: Red Moon Rising. There is a Chronicle named "Titan" written about them.

It is now 2015 and we are still struggling with these ships in gameplay. They have been so amazing that they could launch a doomsday through a cyno and destroy and entire grid. That got nerfed. As more came into the game they got nerfed more. Super's were once motherships, made to move entire fleets and they later became super carriers, bigger versions of the same thing. The understanding of video games and MMOs in 2005 was not prepared for 2015.

That leaves us with a constant state where CCP tries to make their assets work as their game and players grow and age. Developers of the future are sitting with choices from the past and everyone is trying to make it work.

Due to Eve's habit of not removing things but balancing, revaluing, and adjusting, we keep trying to envision what to do with these ships. But, the question has crept up more in discussions I have with players. "Can these ships be saved or should CCP delete them from the game?"

There is the emotional reaction of "my stuff!" Supers are often asperational achievements. Many players put large amounts of time into gaining access to these ships. People dream of them. New players gasp at them. When a cyno goes up and the solid thump of landing supers hits me my pulse races. They are amazing, awe inspiring, things. To take them would mean that the effort that went into gaining them is gone. In a game where our things maintain their relative value, that is a big deal. It means that ISK, skills, and time are gone. Two of those three things can be given back but time is never captured once spent.

But do they have a place in Eve's future? Or, more correctly, would Eve be better without them? If the top of the line ships were carriers and dreadnoughts? In a world where structure grinding is being eliminated for other forms of game play what do we do? Is it more of the same? Can we find unique and interesting things to do with them?

Which brought up a second thought. If we supers in all their forms were radically changed, how should that be handled? Normally, we suck up change and go. But there is a difference between rebalancing haulers and turning supers into a different gaming platform then what people invested in them.

If the changes were radical enough, should there be an optional turn in? You can continue down the path or you can turn in your ship for X return and your player for its skill points reimbursed. I wondered if such a choice would create a better or worse situations for those who found their new choices incomprehensible.

Is there a path where Eve could shed some of its heaviest burdens? I don't know. It is heresy to ask. But maybe we need heretics.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Background Noise

This isn't about the actual Q&A. It is about the background work so that people know what I've been up to the last week. Why? Because this type of thing took an enormous amount of work from several people. It is a new expierence for me and thats what I write about.

That was an experience. I'm not really thrilled with how it went. An hour before the Jump Fatigue talk, I opened the server with the teamspeak details. Around fifteen minutes till we had about twenty people and there was a moment when we wondered if this would be a small talk where we could have an open floor.

Nope. Turns out that is not what happened.

This talk was planned about two weeks ago. It came up during a talk with CCP that they were ready to look at jump fatigue again and would like to have a soundboard. However, for a topic like jump fatigue it was too big to have the normal type soundboard that Corbexx and I have been holding.

What we came up with was a date and time and a forum post of questions. We'd work in a Q&A format from the question and try to open the floor to discussions. Mike collected all of the questions into a document. He spent every day combing the thread. I then spent the weekend turning it from a random mass of questions into a organized list with subsections. The raw collection was about twelve pages and then we received trickle questions into Monday and then questions from the Russian community. I was running out of actual time.

A few months ago, I asked my husband if I could have a teamspeak server. He looked at the specs, chuckled, and said that it wasn't a problem. He set up the server, I applied for a non-profit license, and in a few days I had a teamspeak server with a maximum capacity of 512. One problem we have experienced as a CSM is having a type of neutral ground that we controlled. We've leaned heavily on Eve Uni over the years and they have been great with assisting and having moderators. However, I feel that we should be the ones in control of the process. My server does not belong to a corp or alliance so its very neutral.



I am pleased with how the server handled the traffic.

The hard part is how do you have any type of reasonable discussion where there may be several hundred people attending? It means that it will have to be heavily moderated. There is often a lot of energy and emotion tied into these things. People get aggressive, they get angry, and they start to rant. I do not want to dismiss the impact a change has had on people but communication does not occur under conditions of extreme emotion.

I also thought I had the channels fully set up. I would learn about 10 minutes in when we hit 100 people that I had missed a permission. I got it fixed but it is unfortunate that it happened. I'm pleased I got it fixed and accept the ridicule that came with my mistake.

The server details had been sent to the people on the thread who had poised questions. The idea was to have them enter the discussion and have additional questions in an in game channel. Instead the server details were shared and a lot of people arrived. I had anticipated this so once I fixed the channel setting it went smoothly. However this is also when it got a bit rough.

It is a lot of people to manage. I had this grand idea of starting with a bunch of the basic introduction questions and then moving in order down the question list. This didn't happen. Trying to get people to talk and get them to talk on topic turned out to be challenging. I also wanted to include the chatroom. On retrospect I should probably lock things down a bit more and stop trying to be so utterly inclusive.

Jayne was broadcasting to twitch and unfortunately had some technical difficulties off and on.

Once the questions and discussion started it had the side effect of answering other questions. I started to move around the question list to connect the follow up questions with the discussion and make sure major points we had marked out were reached.I also tried not to have the same handful of speakers always talking but that is something I have found happens. Some are more comfortable than others in the public forum.

At this point we've covered a lot of ground and the reactions that I can occasionally glimpse are all over the place. I tried to keep the topic on jump fatigue and not Aegis Sov. I tried the ask the challenging questions I was given to ask. If I look at the feedback I was glimpsing in game, I'd say that things did not go well.

I apologize. Those of us that participated will sit down and try to find a smoother process. Many people have told me that they did not like the structure.

I'm torn if I should have moderated further. I did not want it to be me having a discussion with CCP. I'm going to spend a while debating if I should have kept it to that instead of trying to have a more open format. I know that I won't make everyone happy with whatever is done. The player base is passionate and people wanted to be heard. I want people to be able to speak. I did cut off one person who was going into a full blown rant against CCP early on. That was taken poorly by some. It was because the question had been asked and I was trying to move on. Later, I simply removed talk privileges after a question was asked. It wasn't about "what CCP wanted to hear" it was about me trying to managed several hundred people.

So, for the rest of tonight, I'm pretty tired. I'm sorry to those that thought this was a waste of time. I'm going to keep trying to do things that will bridge communication gaps. I'm going to keep pushing for the player to get into the discussion early. I'm going to have to accept the ugly times with the good because the outcome is what I believe in.

I am glad that I was not DDoSed. Unfortunately, it was one of the first things people said to me as I planned this. My response was that if it happened, I'd take my ball and go home. If it happened I'd have been deeply disappointed. It was a concern but it was one that I decided to accept.

The people involved:

We scheduled this with CCP Larrikin as he is leading the review. We also had CCP Fozzie, CCP Delegate Zero, CCP Mimic, and CCP Nullarbor decide to attend. On the CSM we had Thoric, Jayne, Sort, Sugar, Corbexx, Mike, and towards the end Endie and Manifred.

I handled most of the voice moderation with Sort backing me up. Mike was in the chat channels, and Corbexx was helping with technical stuff. Jayne was working twitch and Thoric was discussing question order with me in another channel. I handed moderation off to Sort at an hour and a half. I had a dentist appointment that I was unable to reschedule.

Now all that is left is the fall out about how it should have been handled and what should have happened. It may be that this is something that is not done again if people did not find it to have done anything for them. We'll be watching the feedback across various places.

I've been questioning myself if I should have cut the person off insulting the devs from the get go with his question. I gave it a moment to see if a question happened and it didn't. That is one of my major regrets coming out of this, that I let that happen and for that I apologize to all of you. I functioned under a belief of basic civility from participants and I should have acted sooner even with the scorn and derision coming from the various chat mediums over moderation and not letting people speak. This is a flaw in my personality. I am polite and I believe others will be polite. I should know better and again, I am deeply sorry.

Sunday, August 9, 2015

Should Lore be Fair?

On Sisi there is a suggestion of the next phase of the Drifter lore. If one compares it to the actions that have happened of late in Amarr and the Empress Jamyl's reemergence into the public light, it looks as if she has done pissed someone off now.

I find the lore stuff in game cool. I've been making a bit of an effort to follow it in game or to at least see the things going on. I am a spectator and it seems a shame to let a chunk of Eve's history pass me by.

But, not everyone finds the lore as interesting as I do. One of the complaints made in the Faction Warfare room on Tweetfleet Slack was that this may put unfair pressure on the Amarr LP stores. Pressure was fine as long as it happened to the other empire's as well and it was fair.

While I believe in balance in game play, should the lore be fair? Should the story line be written to evenly move across all four empires equally spread out what is happening? Is it bad if the Drifter's rampage across one Empire and fracture the face of the game, changing Amarr space while the other empires look on in horror?

Everyone invested in Amarr finds themselves swept up and affected even if they don't want to be. Things change. Choices have to be made. What always was no longer is. And then we move forward? There is loss and gain.

I don't know. It is easy to speculate on what happens to someone else and the value of it. Still. I wonder... does the Lore have to be fair?

CSMX - Post #23

Unfortunately, this week did not leave us with any development dev blogs. That has not stopped things from progressing, but first about that downtime from right after Aegis Sov was released. CCP Goliath and CCP Masterplan wrote up a dev blog about what happened on July 15th when Eve broke. Many people requested a summary and this was backed by some voices on the CSM. It is the type of behind the scenes information that has fascinated me about the relationship between CCP and its player base.

Jump Fatigue

The Jump Fatigue Town Soundboard Hall: August 12th, 2015 at 1700 GMT
Forum Thread: https://forums.eveonline.com/default.aspx?g=posts&t=439364

CCP said that they are ready to talk about Jump Fatigue and asked us to coordinate public opinion about it. Hence the soundboard. However, its a large topic and many players are very invested in it. Instead of trying to have an open floor where everyone just said what they wanted we are attempting to create a hybrid of the Town Hall which is a Q&A format and the Soundboard which is an open floor discussion.

  • We are taking questions first. Those we are organizing into topics. 
  • Then we can read the topics (probably me) to CCP Larrikin who will answer. 
  • Then people will respond, ether asking to speak or typing to questions. You'll get unmuted and we will go from there. I'd love to have open floors and open mics for this but I do not think that will go well. We're going to have to moderate and be draconian to get all the groundwork covered.
  • Or: Only twenty people show up and we run it like a normal soundboard.

The secondary aspect of accepting questions is that we have them all laid out for reference and future debate.

I understand that some people are upset that we are doing public outreach at the start of the discovery process. Some do not believe that this is the start and only want to discuss the plans we have come up with. I'm sorry about that. I've spent my CSM term trying to bring the player base closer to CCP. There are a lot of opinions about jump fatigue. We could sit down, come up with something between all of us, and hope for the best. I'd prefer to take the time to lay out the situation as much as we can, first. We have everything from "roll back the changes they are terrible" to "they are just fine and I love the game now".

Mike has been collecting all of the questions posed in the thread. I'm currently sorting them into a loose topic order. It is going to take a few days. Thank you for all of the energetic responses.

Some of my personal feelings: There things I like about the jump changes. There are things that I do not like. I've already worked through several questions about choke points and range limitations. I seriously want to examine the structure of space. Eve was randomly generated. With a change this great some basics should be at least examined.

I don't like the month long cap on fatigue. A month is an awful long time to smack someone on the nose for using a mechanic. I didn't like it when it was introduced and I still dislike it.

Structures:

The Structure Soundboard: We are aiming for the week of the 17th of August. We're still waiting on final day and time choice from CCP Nullarbor.

This will be our classic open floor chat unless things get super crazy.

The structure outreach effort has two parts. We will be holding a sound board after the dev blog is released. I am creating a Q&A for CCP Nullarbor based on your questions that will be answered after the dev blogs are released. Then, with all the feedback and questions we will go into the Summit next month.

On Rob Kaichin's request, I have also created a companion condensed fact sheet for structures that will be released after the dev blogs go live. I wrote it up using past dev blogs, forum responses, public communications, and the unreleased dev blogs. That was then approved by CCP Nullarbor and CCP Yitterbium.  The goal of this document is to give a on stop shop for many basic questions since much of the information is scattered across dev blogs and forum posts.

Forum Post for the Q&A.

Other Stuff

CCP Leeloo made the decision to remove Gorga from CSMX. A rerun of the ballots gives the position to UAxDeath. UAxDeath is already on board with access to slack and confluence. For those unfamiliar with UAxDeath he has been a staple of null sec for a long, long time as an alliance leader. I was asked about Gorga's background by several unfamiliar with him. He was also a null sec alliance leader.

My Monthly Chat: Between two soundboards, and a Q&A to write and Summit Prep and the fact that I go on vacation the last week of the month, I'm playing hookie and being irresponsible! I did hang out with Signal Cartel on Saturday. They wanted me for my markets more so than the CSM.

Saturday, August 8, 2015

Maybe one day!

 [15:32:10] Trig Vaulter > Sugar Kyle Nice bio - so carebear sweet - oh you have a 50m ISK bounty - so someday more grizzly
 [15:32:38 ] Sugar Kyle > /emote raises an eyebrow to Trig
 [15:32:40 ] Sugar Kyle > okay :)
 [15:32:52 ] Sugar Kyle > maybe one day I will try PvP out

When I logged in one of the first things I did was answer a question in Eve Uni Public Help. It was a random question that I knew the answer of. I have 'Sugar' as a keyword so it highlights green and catches my attention.

This made me chuckle. Maybe I'll have to go and see what it is like to shoot a ship one day? I could not help but smile. Basi suggested that I put my Titan killmail in my bio and assert my badassery. I figure, naw. It was a roll of the dice that landed me that kill mail. It doesn't define me as a person.

Bios are interesting. The idea of a biography is a way to personalize your account. You can learn a lot about a person by what they choose to put in their bio. Mine has the same thing in it that it has had since I started. It also has a note about the CSM and a link to my blog and my chat.

My Bio was written in my first few months of the game. I'm rather attached to it. Time has passed and with it innocence has grown into experience. But my bio... it is still how I see Eve.
My Eve
Everyone says that Eve is a sandbox. I don't agree with that. I believe that Eve is a beach. On one side is the ocean. It is an ever changing, fluid environment. That's PvP.
On the other side is land. Its stable and solid and familiar and supports you. That's the life of a carebear. It's tempting to stay.
In between is the sand. That's where worlds are created. It is bordered by the two forces. That is balance.
On the beach are trillions of grains of sand. Each one is a choice, a decision, a moment, an instance, a chance to be used or discarded or bypassed or noticed. The ocean may pour over it and the land may shake it, but it is a flexible, fluctuating, ever changing world. It is the world that I mold.
That is my Eve

Friday, August 7, 2015

Ripples Returning

There I was. I was debating my future PvE attempts. I've come up with a few ideas. I have a mission boat for trying to grind Sister's of Eve. I'm late to the party by two or three years but I'm okay with that. I've never been the ground breaking type. I also want to try shattered wormholes, maybe? I figure at the most I lose a ship and POD.

I've been looking at ships and making some choices as to what to fly. I realize that I can do whatever I want. It is pretty great. I can fit it how I want. I can fly what I want. I can screw up and no one is there to yell at me, ridicule me, or complain about the loss on the board. It is freeing and I'm starting to realize that I only have to answer to me which means that I can fall back into my normal gaming habits and stop worrying.

That is how I found myself looking at the cargo hold capacity of various potential smaller ships and pondering the purpose of the MTU in today's age.

Long time ago, in an Eve far far away, there was a time before Odyssey was released. I was a young pilot then. Just two years old. That was a time when I still undocked my Noctis occasionally to collect the salvage from level five missions. That Noctis is now twilighting in Klingt because it has almost no value now.

The Mobile Tractor Unit was introduced with new structures in Odyssey. It killed the Noctis. Add in salvage drones, something CCP had promised since the earliest days of the game and that beloved, awkward shape fell into the shadows with the Primea.

There was a time that people told me I lied when I told them I used a Noctis in low sec. Such a dangerous thing was not something a newbie did. If I had not had it I might have spent those hours  beside Lue in a combat ship instead. I don't know. It would have been a different relationship. Now, we have a Mobile Tractor Unit. It allows us not to work with others. No more salvage channel and newbies seeking level four's to clean up after. Just drop it and forget about it and salvage is had.

I don't think it is for the better. It is convent, sure. But, Eve, a game that already suffers from a terrible habit of discouraging social interactions in things like mission rewards, doesn't need more ways to discourage people from being together.

I may just be floating the dusty memories of my start but they were good memories. They are deep memories. They are memories that I wax poetic about still and none of them start, "I put a MTU down and enjoyed spending time with it so much as it sucked space clean. I learned so much from it. Wow."

I think Odyssey may be my least favorite expansion, looking back. It did a lot of interesting things but it also went about introducing things. Some, such as the scatter containers have been rolled back. Thinking about other parts of Odyssey, such as the discovery scanner that in one motion wiped away the simplest concept of exploration I realize there were a lot of convenience features in Odyssey. Nice, convent things that may not have been the best for the games future when looked at with hindsight.

The death of the salvager may seem a small thing but I think we are seeing repercussions for it. It removed one of the earliest, viable new player careers. One that they grew out of in time for them to spread more experienced wings. And sure, later, older, bitterer, it may not seem like a big thing. It was never that much money anyway compared to other things.

But when we cannot do other things? There is an area in the game that is lacking for new players. That 3 week to three month phase is so critical and hard to get through. In our game of poor multi-player PvE with its punishment for rewards and encouraging of selfishness, was removing such a useful social tool for the best?

I'm looking at my cargo hold and wondering. I have four characters that can fly Noctis.

But why fly one?

I can just put this tractor unit in my cargo hold.



Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Umbrella

I have decided that Avatar's are umbrellas.

My shocking moment of pure awesome logic says that we need to have their umbrellas close so that they can go inside of structures.

This makes perfect sense.

Brought to you by the letter:


And:


Tuesday, August 4, 2015

CSMX - Post #22 : A Call for Structure Questions

There is a delay to the Structure Development blogs that are on their way. Delays are frustrating things and patience wears thin. I sat down with CCP Nullarbor to discuss creating a condensed list of notes from the recent conversations on tweetfleet slack as a way to fill in some of the void. However, as we discussed it the plan evolved a bit.

  • The primary goal is to bring answers to questions that players have developed over the last few months.
  • The secondary is to address concerns that players have developed that may not be answered in the development blogs or may be created by the development blogs.

The Summit is in six weeks. We are in a perfect moment to condense some of this information, so where is what we are going to do.

Corbexx and I are putting together a Soundboard for Structures that will occur before the September Summit. From our date hashing it looks like we will put it together in two weeks, but I'll announce that date on Sunday since we are still merging timezones.

I am going to gather Structure questions and create a Q&A that CCP Nullarbor will answer. This is the major focus of this blog. I have plenty of things I can ask him based on what I have seen you all ask, but I'd like to just have you give me questions.

Mails, blog posts, forum posts, responses, whatever you need to do. Once I have a nice, healthy stack of questions, he and I will sit down and work through them and publish the results. I'd love to get this done before the end of the month. That will give us leadup to the Summit so that we have a focused discussion with player responses as a major focal point.

Cross posted to the Forums.

Deserving

When you log into a game what do you expect?

What do you deserve?

What basic things should be in place for an engaging game session?

I often walk around the edge of a swirling mass of thoughts, opinions, concepts, hopes, wants, dreams. At times certain things surface more than others. Often from this I collect bits and pieces that connect all over the game. At other times I am given ideas and concepts that I find distasteful.

I rarely write about the distasteful things. I could drown my blog in the darkness. But that has little value. I prefer to fight against the negativity even as it attempts to drag me under. So, I avoid it. But this one... this one I am tired of.

It is unfortunate that I can no longer count the amount of times that I have been told another player group does not deserve to be treated well in Eve. They do not deserve gameplay. They do not deserve development time. They do not deserve the ISK that they can gain. That they do not deserve the ships the fly, the modules that the fit, or the existence that keeps them logging into their client each day.

How angry it makes me. I can feel the bitterness washing over me. And I often wonder how we reached this point. This point where people can call out another and tell them that they do not deserve anything for they do not live, play, and engage in the right game environment for what they have and that it should be removed.

I know that Eve is not a perfect game. I do not spend hours writing about Eve's flaws. I acknowledge them. I then indulge myself in trying to fix the flaws.  I say this to voice the fact that the game is not perfectly balanced and I am under no illusion that it is. Things need to change. They need to change more often then they do. That is where I find my path.

When I log into Eve, I have several things that I want. I want a secure base. I want the things that I have gathered to be where I left them if I have taken proper measures to put them there. Things like that matter to me.

That is why I ask the questions above. I listen to people telling me what others do not deserve. I'd like to hear what a player does deserve. What are they entitled to? What are the pieces of a good gaming session? What should fill up that spot that is gaming? That makes us thirsty to return?

Maybe I can salvage something positive from my anger.

Perspectives

I've been thinking about ships in a somewhat utilitarian way. I've also discovered that I find that to be interesting. Chella needs a ship for my exploration of the Amarr story line. I've moved her to Amarr for now and she has been puttering around in a blockade runner. But, I think I'd like to put her in something else for her explorations but I don't know what.

Ships have always been eyed for their value surviving combat or getting me around low sec. With Chella following about the high sec stuff I find that I can fly whatever I want. Something fast and agile with enough tank not to pop to a random artillery Thrasher on a gate if I stop paying attention.

I'm debating Daredevils just because, why not. I don't know if they will fill all of that. I have no idea if Chella can fly interceptors. Maybe? I'm to lazy to look right now. But maybe there is something better? 

It's been a long time since I just sat down and looked at ships. I've had my stable of old, familiar hulls forever. There are ships that I've never thought about flying because it was silly to fly them where I lived and what I did.

But all of those restrictions are gone.

I can do whatever I want just because I want to. I have no ones billboard to harm. No one to offend with a wrong decision. No one over my shoulder at a loss mail.

It is still hard to take in.

So, I think I'll start flipping through ships and decide what I really want to fly.


Sunday, August 2, 2015

CSMX - Post #21

It is a week without dev blogs. However, the CSM has been reviewing some that will hopefully make their way to you very soon.

We have also sat down with CCP on Thursday and discussed null sec and the current impacts the Aegis changes have brought and the game that players are currently playing. The floor is open to share your stories, thoughts, and opinions. As always, I suggest using explanations and descriptions instead of, "It sucks" or the term "cancer". Those are not productive complaints that I can use to argue for what you want.

Jump Clone changes are staying. This came up when the bug was noticed. The cause of the bug was found quickly and we had a lot of back and forth about the feature and if it should stay or not. I reached out for feedback here as well as receiving it from the game and such. I've made a lot of clones for people with my Rorqual but I don't think that that's the best reason to keep standings as they were. I think that it highlights the fact that there needs to be a better reward system created for high standings. At the same time, it also reestablishes the fact that standings need a serious sit down and rework as they become a weird, hollow shell of features. My concern is that this will be left dangling. I don't want that.

Over on Eve Now they have been posting some of the structure concept design. Our relationship with the structure team is very good. We're down there hashing out details. We don't always agree but we at least are having conversation. I'd like to bring back structure bonuses to faction warfare system ownership and spend a lot of time poking in that area.

We also have a very important soundboard/townhall we are planning for the end of next week. Look to the forums for the announcement, hopefully Monday.

And I've been spending a lot of time reading feedback, documents, and having discussions with various groups and topics inside of faction warfare as we gear up for the summit.

Not to address the recent round of CSM Drama

Friday, while I was at work, all hell seemed to break loose. I came home to discover that "The CSM" wished for Gorga to resign. Not having been spoken to about the subject, I spent a large amount of the evening finding out what happened even as people asked me what was going on. At the same time Corbexx released a meeting attendance list that he has been keeping. I will try to address both topics.

Meetings. I made one of the two scheduled this week. Each week that we have meetings I try to tell you if we did or did not have meetings this week and if I was able to attend them. That is my accountability to you as to what I am doing and what I am able to attend.

Meetings are mostly held during CCP's working hours. That is GMT. I am EST which places me at four to five hours (damn daylight savings) behind CCP. On work days, I work from 6am to 6pm. I have a two week cycle where I work opposing days. This means I am only off every other Friday. That is why I make half the weekly meetings with Leeloo. Unfortunately,  I did not make the type of job decisions that.allow me to attend meetings during my work day. If a meeting falls on a day I work  I cannot attend.  I gave CCP Leeloo my work calendar through the end of 2016 for this reason but meetings fall when they will. We have had a number of meetings with twenty four hour notice. I will also point out that this is the same schedule I had last term. However, more meetings were on my days off and our bimonthly meeting was always on a day off being every two weeks.

The case of the public call for Gorga to resign is an interesting  situation. I was at work and started getting people asking me what was going on and why did I want Gorga to resign. The topic of looking into his inactivity had cropped up. Is he okay? Is he busy? Has anyone heard from him? However, on Friday as I understand it there was the Friday meeting. I was not at because I was at work. Then there was a tweet. Then all hell broke loose. I have no problem with members of the CSM asking another member to resign and stating a reason for that. If people wish they can start to lobby for me to resign. That is personal choice. My natural tendency is to be very angry at being included in another decision instead of writing angry tweets or posts I decided to push back my knee jerk reaction. I could have added to the drama storm brewing and I decided not to and instead look at the situation.

Inactive members of the council seem to plague session after session. I'd like everyone to be active and I'd like those who find they don't have the time or that the CSM has not provided them the interest to resign. The amount of time that can go into this position can be unexpected. I think its a worthy project and I take the responsibility  that I volunteered for seriously. I hope if I found myself in a home or employment position that did not allow me to interact with the position as I believed I'd be able to interact with it, that I'd step down. That being said, I will not cover for an inactive member. I will express what activity I have seen and note that a member can be active outside of my view. But for the most part, even if we do not directly interact with each other we see things like conversations on slack, confluence interactions, and other signs that the member is around.

The problem is there is no way to officially  deal with inactive  members. It is something we started trying to have formally written up last year and something  we will  have to get done. That leaves an inactive member not violating the technical side of things but violating the spirit and reason of being here. The current white paper does call on a member to communicate with their constitutes. Two months of silence does not seem like communication.

It disappoints me that this failing happens session after session. People stand up and ask players to vote for them. They ask players to let them represent them. And then they walk away from it without even saying, "I'm going to go." I believe we should have something in place that is a bit more clear and coherent and the lack of that is what is causing these situations that appear to be sudden storms but that have been brewing slowly.

One concern brought to me on Friday night was worry that the CSM was not functional or productive when a situation like this is going on. The activity of the individual members are so important because of our time spent with developers. But, if a member calls out another member that does not mean they cannot work on useful improvements and responses to the game. If someone asks me about a member's activity, I will freely share their activity as I have seen. Internally, I will question if a member is active and I'd like to see that addressed. Six weeks is a release and six weeks of silence puts a member behind and valuable feedback is potentially lost.

Some members of the CSM have approached CCP Leeloo and addressed themselves in public or private as they may have. Now this ball is in play. As always, I'm curious about the voters reaction. Do they want members quickly stripped and removed or do they want people sitting in their positions forever? I figure there is a lot of middle ground there.

As to why should there be a process? CCP can just remove a member but the backlash that would cause between conspiracy theorists and the potential trust it might break would be mostly alleviated with a clear process. There are issues to address like a basic understanding of activity. Is a month inactive to long? When is it to late to add a new member? Is it ever? I'm not a big fan of ambiguity.

In the end, this rolls back to the white paper rewrite that started last year and has not yet produced a new white paper. That is an unfortunate situation and one that I'd like to have resolved by the end of this term. There is more to being on the CSM then being elected and that needs to be made clear. This is a volunteered for responsibility. No one made me run. I try to hold myself accountable to you and I hope that I have managed to do that.