Sunday, December 25, 2011

POD-ageddon X-Mass - Update 2 - It has started

I am taking a quick break from the X-Mass festivities to announce that POD-aggedon has started. Please post all killmails (in their entirety not a link) in the comments section of this post. Winner will receive a pirate or navy faction cruiser of choice.

Remember the Rules!
1. Kill must be in Hi-sec.
2. Runs from downtime December 24, 2011 to downtime January 1st 2012 (kills must be in by downtime).
3. Prices of implants to be calculated based upon Jita Market Prices/purchase contract prices. Thus a snake set is worth a LOT more than 100 +1 perception implants.
4. Implants must be in a head (only pod-kills count).
5. Podder (final blow) gets the credit, not the podded ;)

Good Luck!

Edit: Some confusion apparently, if you want to participate please post all of the pod killmails as comments to this message.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Focus on the Primary!

Flying in various RvB gangs, as well as a recent Public Agony destroyer gang, I have noticed that a LOT of people just don't seem to understand that focusing fire on the primary is not just a piece of gentle advice from the FC, but rather the difference between victory and defeat. When the FC is calling a primary, unless there is a very good reason, that is what you should be shooting at.

Don't get me wrong, I appreciate that the enemy is splitting their fire. When flying a ship in a 15v15 engagement in RvB I appreciate it when I start taking damage from a single ship, allowing me lots of time to warp out and then return to the battle. I appreciate it that my own fleet is not loosing a ship every few seconds to focused fire. Rather we are all being evenly pelted to one degree or another. Oddly enough when I am called primary I appreciate it that I am getting all of the enemy e-war placed on me. It is good that, three or four tracking disruptors, a few stasis webs and enough points are placed on me that even if I fit nothing but WCS in the lows I would still not be able to leave. I know that my going down at that point is diverting valuable ewar away from my own side allowing them to inflict maximum damage and maneuver as needed.

Unfortunately I know that the same lack of focused fire is happening from my side as well.

In short, when in fleet place your DPS on the primary. Spread your e-war appropriately across the enemy fleet. One side does that and the other does not, they will win.

Example of this would be on the Agony run destroyer fleet I was on. Although there was a large discussion in the forum from some non-agony wondering about the importance of shooting the primary, during the fleet we were able to give the FC the concentrated fire of all of our DPS. And thanks to the enemy fleet on two occasions spreading fire around to me enough that my paper thin thrasher had lots of time to get out of dodge when needed.

Friday, December 9, 2011

POD-ageddon X-Mass - Update 1 - How to submit

I am writing a little program to parse out killmails from the comments section of my blog. The way things are going to work is as follows. I will create a post for each day and players are to submit killmails as comments in a raw form (not as a link). My little app will parse through the killmails extracting things like the date, pilot, and what implants were destroyed. This will be loaded up into to a database to then calculate the totals. I will expect each killmail to also appear on battleclinic and I will audit the killmails, especially the winners, to confirm that they are legit. All killmails must be API verified by battleclinic so make sure you give them you API key.

Remember, PODageddon begins on christmas EVE, so get set to trash your sec status then. Merry podding everyone.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

POD-ageddon X-Mass December 24 - December 31

One of the nice new things in the Incarna patch is the addition of pods to kill-mails. Finally, killing a billion ISK pod reveals a billion ISK kill-mail :). Fools who afk fly through empire space, or otherwise think that their pods are safe should now know..... they will be killed, if only to pad some anti-social individual's kill-board. This is awesome. To celebrate this I am going to suggest we have a Christmas POD-agedon event (stealing the title mercilessly from Hulkageddon). From Chrismas EVE through to New Years EVE, pods in empire space should be warned.... death is coming.

I am still working on how to implement this. But the following basic rules should apply:

1. Kill must be in Hi-sec.
2. Runs from downtime December 24, 2011 to downtime January 1st 2012.
3. Prices of implants to be calculated based upon Jita Market Prices/purchase contract prices. Thus a snake set is worth a LOT more than 100 +1 perception implants.
4. Implants must be in a head (only pod-kills count).
5. Podder gets the credit, not the podded ;)

Prizes: TBD

I am far from wealthy so all I will throw into the prize pool is a pirate faction cruiser of choice for the contestant with highest total ISK of implants destroyed. Ideally I will get some additional prizes before the contest starts.

How to submit: TBD

Monday, December 5, 2011

Current Users of EVE ... Looks to be up about 10%

Last June I noticed that about a week after the Incarna patch, online users of EVE looked to be down about 10%. Lets see how things look now, nearly week after the Crucible patch:
It now looks to be up around 10% (green line compared to purple), hitting close to or exceeding 50k online users, numbers I have not seen in months. This seemed to have been true over this past weekend as well. In short, things are looking pretty good for this patch. Obviously there are a lot of possible factors, but considering the good reaction to this latest patch, in contrast to Incarna, I think that Crucible is to be credited.

CCP has done something that is almost unheard of in the tech industry, it put away it's own arrogance and listened to its users. That this happened in Iceland, a country credited with being populated by stubborn Vikings, is all the more exceptional.

But wait, there is more to be done. Firstly us EVE players really need to reward CCP for this shift. Give your friends invites. CCP has given out new 60 day invite key (which sadly does not reward the deliverer). Send this to a friend whom you think might want to play EVE. Imagine the effect within CCP, and the wider gaming community, if EVE suddenly gets a spike in revenue for:
1. All but abandoning micro-transactions
2. Listening to the users
3. Driving Improvements to old features instead of just adding more fluff.
4. Communicating openly with the player base.

Gamers all over the industry should know that this is the opportunity to show the publishers that we want quality over trinkets, game-play over pay-to-win and give developers frustrated by greedy executives a nice data point that says.... PLAYERS PLAYERS PLAYERS PLAYERS!!!

Friday, December 2, 2011

What... is your favourite colour? --- Blue. No, yel... auuuuuuuugh

Sorry for the lack of posting... the truth is that there has been so much happening I keep on starting topics and then deciding to switch topics over and and over again. I am going to try and finish some of the articles and will likely have quite a few posts this December. Here is the first.

So a couple of months ago I discussed how I had moved to Venal to run the very profitable Guristas missions. This worked pretty well and I am now more flush with ISK then ever before. I suspect I will be making periodic trips back. Having said that there was one big problem with Venal... it seems to be home to fail-corps. Due to it's issues getting access to empire, and the lack of good nearby PvP hunting grounds... PvP in Venal seems to consist mostly of bling'ed out T3 ships playing station games. Quite sad.

After making my ISK I started just roaming around Venal and eventually got frustrated. The nearby sov space was controlled by such entities as NC. and the Goons so it proved very hard for me to find appropriate targets for a solo frigate, as well hard to survive gate-camps in larger ships.

Since I was wasting hours and hours of hunting with little to show for it except losses to blobs, I decided to try a much more target rich environment, one where in a couple of systems were dozens of ships with ROE that discouraged blobbing and encouraged 1v1s. I joined Red Federation of Red vs Blue.

In two weeks of Red vs Blue I have racked up more kills then the preceding 6 months. It is senseless violence, but sometimes that is the best kind. We do play internet space-ships after all so it is hard to find meaning in anything we do.

Like all combat in EVE, RvB suffers from long waits to find targets, blobbing, station games and the like. However there is a mutual understanding between the sides that good-fights are the priority, not winning. 1v1s are often offered, and accepted. Players are willing to ship-down for fights. This, combined with a small operating arena chock full of people looking for a fight, leads to more good fights then I have seen elsewhere. In short, I can log in, spend an hour, have a good fight, and log-off.

I find that there is a huge variety of skill-levels within the teams. Sometimes you go into a fight against a faction frigate and are stunned to see a bunch of newbie flying and fitting mistakes. Other times it is obvious that a pro is at the controls, often with max skills/implants. A 'no-podding' rule allows players to invest in high-performance implants with little fear of loosing them.

In general members leave behind the 0.0 win at all costs mindset, but not always. I was on a fleet recently with a brand-new FC, with only a few months experience in game. As always happens he made a few mistakes and the fleet got routed. Not a big deal. One player complained but I, and others, reminded him that this was rather silly, and encouraged the rookie FC to try again. This is the sort of thing I love about EVE.

Income generation in RvB is not too hard. Obviously fighting grinds down ISK, but there is nothing to stop players from mission-ing, incursion-ing, wormhole-ing or doing other ISK generating activities outside of the few systems open for combat. Since the general fleet doctrine is to not fly expensive stuff unless you can afford it, this is not really a problem I see for most players.

Being hi-sec near Jita makes logistics easy. It is no problem buying a ship in Jita and two or three jumps later, being in the combat zone. Note: While no RvB fighing is allowed in Jita, the same cannot be said of the routes from Jita to the various HQ.

Anyways, RvB is good fun. If all you want to do is have great fights with much less blobbing, and less hours spent looking, these are great corps to look into.