Saturday, September 14, 2013

The TOS is a Changin'

Come writers and critics
Who prophesize with your pen
And keep your eyes wide
The chance won’t come again
And don’t speak too soon
For the wheel’s still in spin
And there’s no tellin’ who that it’s namin’
For the loser now will be later to win
For the times they are a-changin’

Bob Dylan, The times are a changin'

There has been a significant amount of nerd rage expressed in the various forums, blogs and tweets over the TOS clarification that CCP has released. Impersonation of a Character or the Representative of a character has been a long standing way to "scam" in EVE Online. It may or may not have been always "against the rules" depending on how you look at it, or who you listen to. It definitely is a new definition of what was and not "always has been". The magnitude of unhappy is interesting given that asides from the clarification of the definition nothing much has changed. You will still be able to scam or mis-represent, you will just have to be more creative about it. I have never had a problem with it myself and have used it to my advantage with the old "Cyno alt of XXXX" infiltration. This may be more difficult now.
What is really does bring to light is the fact that CCP is making it more difficult to practice certain nefarious activities.

Does this change the GAME?

Contract scams still happen, even though "free form contracts" were out of the game some time ago.

Miners still get ganked, Hellcity is not as active as in the past and there is no direct gain for Goons to sponsor Hulkageddon. Make no mistake, any content the Goons create is geared towards benefit for Goonswarm, as it should be. Hulkageddon just needs a good promoter/organizer to happen again.

The "Suddenly Ninja" way of life was drastically changed, some of the more clever of them have moved on to create content just as funny and just as shady. At least those that appreciate a challenge have. Overall Crimewatch was a good thing, it opened up more possibilities and changed the dynamics of lowsec PVP for the better.

The dueling mechanic was much maligned, you can see examples of it being creatively used all over new eden everyday. "I thought you would stop at hull" or "How did you pod me? That isn't supposed to happen!" or variations of are just two of my favorite lines coming from that mechanic.

You can list endless examples of "dumbing down", you can also rationalise them any way you want. Fact of the matter is; if you are upset that CCP has removed "easymode" from being nefarious or practicing your favorite nub-torture technique then you are no better than the miners, mission runners, incursion bears that most people claim to dislike. "Easy Mode" is a good thing for Bears, it is not a good thing for someone who wants to be able to beat their chest over how cool they are.
Accept the challenge, step up your game, change is a good thing, polish is a good thing. At the end of the day a "Niche MMO" with a higher retention rate and a better public image is better. There will be more wide-eyed wonder and larger pools of tears to draw that sweet nectar we so dearly love.

Or, just take the easy way out. Because it effected your playstyle so much, right?

Thursday, September 12, 2013


Time is a finite resource. I find my self looking at schedules, responsibilities and demands to see how I could better manage my 24 hours a day to have more of it for recreation and hobbies. It just does not happen. I did have one evening in the last week and a half where I had almost an hour to play. I sat down and logged on, realised how tired I was and went to bed. :)
Some cool things with the update to the expansion's updates. I no longer get the session change choke. The choke/lag/stuttering (whatever you want to call it) was really bothering me, I built my system specifically to handle high demand FPS games while still being able to multibox EVE with all settings on high to take advantage of the big, beautiful monitors I have. Not bragging or anything but it is way overkill for what I do with it. Before Odyssey I could have 6 accounts on with no lag or choke. :) Kudos to CCP for fixing things they break. (I am still not back to being able to have 6 accounts on at once, I only have 5 now but even 5 chokes a bit)
I am starting to get used to the skill reorganization, EVE will be that little bit less confusing for newer players. I thought I was going to like the changes to the HACs but in my opinion there still is not enough of a benefit to the hulls to justify the price difference. I mostly Solo, or try to anyways, the T1 hulls are pretty darn good for their cost.
I am thinking I will like the Jump clone skills, ALWAYS NEED MOAR CLONES. The reduced timer is cool but they really should have made that skill 2 hours per level or better.
I have killed a few ships since I last posted, nothing special was done. I un-docked saw some nub in a belt and pew pew. No real hunt, no real victory, just more New Player Experience, the kind EVE is famous for.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

More Links, Tears, and the End of an Era

I started out this month with a loss taking on an Algos. Not one of my finest moments but I was bored. I also somehow fumbled getting my pod out, aligned and spamming warp before I died. Oh well, had to happen sooner or later.
I went back out that night and caught an Executioner next door in Jov. I afked a bit and came back to a report of a Caracal in a belt, we blobbed him.
The next day I had a fight with a Tusker who's success against me has been 0. He/She finally won one against me. I went back next door and refit with a web instead of TD and undocked to try it out, catching a militia Atron and then shortly after the Tusker who's success against me is limited. Web is better than TD against railgun Incursus :)
I logged the links on afterwards, this was the last weekend of POS links so I pretty much left them logged on the entire weekend after this. The rest of the day was me against Tuskers in 1s and 2s. I find it pretty interesting that a group can have a Loki at their POS at times then whine when someone has a Tengu in system :) I let an Incursus catch me, then come back with a friend, Merlin - Merlin is not a match for a linked Hawk. I had family over for some BBQ and played with nephews and grand kids (I am an old dude) Then after the festivities I undock and sit around for a bit and "get caught" again by a Firetail. Who then comes back with a Tormentor and Hawk. I was unable to keep the Tormentor and Hawk held down so a corp mate comes in to help. The Tusker Tormentor warped off when Comet lands leaving the Hawk to die alone.
Monday sees another day of POS links, by this time the Tuskers are angry and won't some out to play. :) I undock to carry on my mission to kill Ventures and catch one in a Belt. I make a trip next door where we chase a kiting Tristan around till one of us and he dies. I go afk for a bit of breakfast and come back to see a mission plex open. I hastily warp to the plex and almost catch the Manticore on the gate but follow him in so he can't cloak. Manticore goes down and I nab his pod, I did not realise until later that a corp member was following on this one
A bit more AFK for family stuff finds me back at the computer. Rixx had undocked his Moa for some fun with a few random cruisers that came to Hevrice. He "misclicked" and agressed in front of the station to take station guns and cruiser DPS. I dock up and grabd the first thing that came to mind. Maelstrom time! The cruisers do not last long under the fire of 2 Maelstroms and some assorted other stuff, Caracal, Thorax and Rupture go down one right after the other.
Some more AFK and I undock a Slasher, Slasher cannot stand up against a Tristan and Incursus. I undock the Hawk again to go play around a bit when a corp mate announces a Caracal at a medium. Caracal does not last long.
I decide to take another Slasher out for a roam around the neighborhood. It was a slow day for a Labor Day Monday in the US. I manage to catch an Executioner in a Plex then played Cat vs Mouse with a Slicer. He was set up in a plex but being Slicer vs Slasher I had no interest in being Kited so I found a plex and sat at 0 on the warp-in. He wanted the fight and came at me, he got hard tackled and nueted and did not last long.
I came back to Hev and was about to call it a night when a large gang of Random frigs and dessies came in. I sat in a plex and waited for them. I managed to kill 3 Atrons out of their gang of 8 assorted crap before the Hawk went down. A bit of smack talk was exchanged in local where they were bragging about killing my Hawk :) gf gf gf. I had fun and was interested in Round 2. I fit up another Hawk and undocked, they were set up on a plex gate. I messed up on the warpin and managed to DIAF without killing anything. All in all I had fun and would do again. I can understand how they could get so excited though, seriously, killing a Hawk, with only 8 dudes, I would be proud as pie.
Last kill of the night was another Venture, he was angry, called me a jerk. I apologized and explained he had no mining permit. Good fun was had.


Another interesting development; Tuskers are angry over the POSed links. :) I find this very interesting. When ST-FR first formed the Tuskers would regularly have their loki links POSed up. A gang of experienced PVPers using every advantage fighting a group of fairly new pilots with some experienced pilots mixed in. They had fun, we had fun. The tables get turned and I had fun, apparently they did not. :) It really is fairly simple, check DSCAN, see Tengu in a POS and engage at your own risk. I know I do, I also do not whine about it later. Tis a game kiddos, have fun. The Tuskers also thanked the "Scope Gang" for killing the Hawk they "couldn't be bothered to kill", that "always runs from even a single Tusker in a frigate". huehuehuehue. All Good Fun, even before the links weekends I was not doing too bad vs them :)

No matter, I am actually looking forward to trying out some of the newly balanced command ships, I was always kinda miffed that I spent all that time on Command Ships 5 to have T3 cruisers be better at links for a shorter time investment. Those changes along with the long range medium weapon buffs and the HAC "balancing" should bring some interesting new meta to the game. It is probably a good time to start brushing up on my kiting skills.
One of the fixes I am really looking forward to is the improvements to the sound engine for the game and better memory handling on session changes. Before the last expansion I rarely had any issues while multiboxing. Since the last expansion there is always some serious choke on the pretty new session changes. I hope that goes away. Along with scout alts and other support stuff one must keep ones market orders going to afford Hawks :)