Comments

This is a follow up to my previous article on supers. The article was designed to present an extreme. It is a tactic of writing and one that I do enjoy from time to time. That obviously has nothing to do with EVE, so moving on. I do have two posts on the EVE forums about my SOV ideas, but I have no good answer to supers or blobs specifically—and I have not seen any either.

Instead, let us focus on the current state of null EVE. There is a lot of talk on SOV, supers, null sec, blobs. During those talks N3 or CFC, or PL, and BL get brought up a lot, but who really is out there in null sec?

The Groups

Currently, there are two major coalitions in EVE. There is the CFC who controls the left side and there is the N3 who controls the right side. Both get accused, mostly by each other, of blobbing. Next, in the direct south, there is the Russian Coalition that is establishing itself on the border between CFC and N3 space. There is also the Providence Bloc nestled away in Providence.

Then there is Black Legion. (BL) and Pandemic Legion (PL). Both of these alliances are more nomadic in nature and simply go where the kills (and ISK) are. Ncdot is more nomadic as well; however, they are in N3 currently so they are not so much a “free agent” as the other two. PL does have SOV and a decent size rental empire. Black Legion. is currently working with Solar and grinding NCdot SOV hit points in Querious. It does not appear that NCdot is going to defend it, but it is unknown if they will eventually show up.

Next, there are all the many alliances and corps that live in the NPC regions and systems. These alliances mostly specialize in small gang fights, and loudly proclaim they do not want blues or blobs. They typically don’t have any blues, or very few. The larger alliances do tend to leave them alone as you can’t really kick someone out of an NPC station.

There is one more section of null sec however, and that is the renters. These alliances and corps are not coalition members, but are affiliated with the coalition by way of paying ISK for space and SOV protection. They do not get direct protection of their space from roams, campers, and the like; however the coalitions will protect the SOV if it gets attacked. The hundreds of individual corps are placed inside the coalition controlled rental alliance.

Perceived Problems

That short summary covers all the regions of null sec at this time. This leads to the first problem that people talk about: you can’t get into SOV null sec without making a deal or joining one of the coalitions. In my experience, this is currently mostly true because every region is controlled by someone part of a larger group. If an alliance attacks SOV trying to get a foot hold, a group will be sent by a coalition to defend it (usually the group that owns the SOV, unless it is a renter’s SOV then a coalition group will be sent).

However, some of the regions may be more critical than others, allowing someone to get some space. For example, Cobalt Edge was just cleaned up by N3 members and the CFC did not deploy to save it. The reason stated by CFC is that Cobalt Edge was not part of the CFC and was just extra SOV that Razor (a CFC member) took. Granted, CFC is currently deployed on the other side of EVE and it would have cost a lot of ISK and time to move all the way to the far north to save half a region that was already in reinforced mode.

Another problem is the prevalence of supers. There is no good answer to them at the moment. Some people propose getting rid of them; I suggested completely changing their roles and price to be more like just another capital ship. Others have suggested making them more expensive, and still some have suggested adding a maintenance costs to owning them. However, none of the above expect for getting rid of them will actually do anything about the groups that currently have hundreds of them. The only proposal that will allow smaller groups to get them in larger numbers then they can now was mine, but even that is flawed in many ways because the larger groups will have a virtually unlimited supply. It still leads back to the same issues, and begs the question: Are supers really a problem? Can enough dreads engage and kill a super fleet? There have been several dread/super engagements and while supers did die, a lot of dreads did too. Further testing is required.

The main, most complained about issue is blobbing. Blobbing, as the name implies, is when a smaller fleet is dropped by a larger fleet. The ships don’t matter, the size difference does not matter—It is all still called blobbing by most people.

Blobbed much?

Is blobbing really a game-destroying problem? I currently live in low-sec, and I have lived a long time in null sec. What I have seen is any group will bring as many numbers as they can and drop it on anything they can. The CFC gets picked on because their blobs blot out the sun; however an NPC 0.0 alliance dropping 30 guys on a ratting ship is a “blob”. A low-sec group dropping 20 dreads on one carrier is a “blob”.

A blob is a relative and suggestive term to imply an unfair numerical advantage over an opponent. However, every PVP group I know of wants maximum fleet numbers. It is has been like that for years. Before the current coalitions there was the Greater Bob Community, Red Swarm, the old Northern Coalition, Southern Coalition, Drone Region Federation (DRF), IT Alliance coalition, and many others. If you talk to people who have played the game for a long time they will tell you that while the amount of people in the blobs were lower, there was still complaining and discussing about blobs.

The Real Story

All of the major powerhouse groups in the game have been in the game virtually since the beginning, or are run by someone who has been. This is because EVE is a game, and it suffers from some of the same problems that any MMO on the market does. One such problem is the “end game”. If you were not there in the beginning of any MMO, when you do start you always have a disadvantage compared to the players who have reached the “end game”. This is could be max level, or some great item/equipment, etc. The difference is that other MMOs have safe areas and “beginner areas” where those players cannot go. EVE just throws you right out into it. Do we really want a “new to eve?” area? “Join the non-blobby world where groups over x amount of SP and membership are not allowed to be”. I think not.

I am not for turning EVE into a more “gentle” MMO. I like the fact the players get thrown into the “real world” of space and must survive. I think EVE would be ruined if the core of EVE’s depth were ever changed. What I am suggesting is that these problems have been in the game since the game was created. It seems to me that EVE is still here, and has grown despite the commonly discussed problems. The complaints about supers have existed since supers were implemented, and the complaints about SOV have existed since SOV was created.

Summary

In the medieval world of Earth, when a leader of a country died there could very likely be civil war to determine the new one. Alliances and coalitions of old would, at some point in history, fall apart and massive war would break out between the former members. This does not happen often in EVE because, being a video game, the leaders don’t die. They may leave the game, but this does not usually create such a large power vacuum that there is a civil war. Most times groups simply break up and go separate ways rather than fight it out in a civil war.

It is human nature to gang up and “blob”. It is no different in a video game. All the major powerhouses of EVE got to where they are by years of experience in the game, years of hard work through mechanics a lot more difficult than they are now, and by conquest and destruction.

How can CCP change human nature without ruining the game…a game that is, at is core, based on human nature?

What can be done to the game to cause coalitions to want to fight each other instead of be blue?

- JustSharkBait

54 Comments

  1. best_burek

    First in. Don’t relay give a shit about anything you have to say ;)

    September 17, 2013 at 5:05 pm Reply
    1. At least it's not GG

      Could have been worse. Could have been a Grevlin article.

      September 17, 2013 at 5:43 pm Reply
      1. at least he takes the time to write articles and provide content. Its not an easy thing to put :words: in public with your name on it knowing the internet will troll you.

        September 17, 2013 at 7:19 pm Reply
    2. but you took the time to post a comment. nice.

      September 17, 2013 at 7:18 pm Reply
    3. Wut?

      you could have used the time it took you to write this insightful comment to do something productive, i.e. to biomass irl.

      September 17, 2013 at 9:08 pm Reply
      1. best_burek

        And you could have used the time it took you to insult my post to actually get out of your mothers basement and walk outside a bit. If you could fit through the door.

        September 18, 2013 at 12:15 am Reply
        1. whysomad?

          So angry lol. Have you run out of methylphenidate again? Better fetch another pack so you don´t look like a total sperg.

          September 18, 2013 at 1:05 pm Reply
  2. ddduuurrr

    dduuruur eve is so broken its not even funny…DDDURRRRdduuurrr

    September 17, 2013 at 5:16 pm Reply
  3. Kadeshi Grunt

    Actually blobing, by itself, it´s not that big problem. The major problem is when you only fight when you have, at least, twice the numbers of the enemy…when you blue every possible corp and alliance just to make your fleet so big that even the best FC can´t the outcome dps, nor can break the logistic wall of repair.

    Still, that is valid strategy, but shouldn´t be the ONLY strategy. But it is. And that´s the game boring. I get 100 times more fun from small roams then any fleet fight.

    Good hunt

    Kadeshi Grunt

    September 17, 2013 at 5:42 pm Reply
    1. blobsforlulz

      I don’t think the blob is a problem either. The problem is that blob moving 10ly in 1 second.

      September 17, 2013 at 6:07 pm Reply
      1. Soulxlight

        No neither of those are the problem. The problem is timers. Timers allow blobs to form. Timers give them a time to form the biggest group, and a place that both groups have to fight. That is the problem.

        No matter what you do with movement or logistics of jump bridges, Titans, Carrier jump range, Dreads, anything . . . blobs will always reign supreme as long as you have long timers for anything. I don’t know how to fix this as without timers you’d just be constantly running around putting out fires . . . but until you do change this . . . blobs will always be the ultimate win button.

        September 17, 2013 at 9:12 pm Reply
        1. suddenly

          Well, I don’t mind blobs, that’s just the way the world works… the larger gang usually wins. Eve is kinda special in that regard, that such large groups can pvp together as a unit.
          But in RL defense usually has the advantage. Defenders don’t have to move, not tiring themselves out by the movement and exposing their intentions. They don’t have to engage the enemy if the enemy changes its mind, or has other more pressing issues. But in eve, its suddenly spaceships.

          September 17, 2013 at 10:34 pm Reply
    2. M1k3y_Koontz

      EVE needs a mechanic that allows for a smaller group of players to overcome a larger group of players. Just like IRL, a smaller force CAN win in the face of overwhelming odds, history is full of examples, my personal favorite being Bastogne during the Battle of the Bulge in WWII

      September 17, 2013 at 11:00 pm Reply
      1. thisiswherewefight

        Yes, that and the 300… both cases the smaller group was defending.

        September 17, 2013 at 11:05 pm Reply
        1. M1k3y_Koontz

          Yes, I forgot about the 300 Spartans. An excellent example indeed.

          September 17, 2013 at 11:43 pm Reply
          1. Filip Viruk Drab

            According to history they lost in the end though. Xerxes rolled over them like a flood. That’s the same in EVE

            September 18, 2013 at 6:46 am
          2. leonidis

            They accomplished their mission, which was to delay the Persians until the politicians could get their act together and mount a proper defense.

            September 18, 2013 at 11:32 am
          3. M1k3y_Koontz

            True, but currently there is no way for a small force to inflict massive losses upon an enemy before dying, they are simply one-shot off the field by 1000 rokhs or 1000 domis or something ridiculous.

            September 18, 2013 at 8:25 pm
          4. Filip Viruk Drab

            R’n’K are doing it and were doing it throughout the war.

            September 19, 2013 at 7:36 am
          5. M1k3y_Koontz

            RNK is hardly a good example, mainly because you can’t defend sov with pipebombs…

            September 19, 2013 at 9:41 pm
  4. charlie

    I don’t think you’ve really said anything here, you’ve just typed a lot of words.

    September 17, 2013 at 6:16 pm Reply
  5. Darth Nefarius

    ” expect for getting rid of them ”
    Typo or Freudian slip?

    September 17, 2013 at 6:41 pm Reply
    1. supposed to be “except”.

      however, knowing CCP i would not be shocked or surprised if they get rid of them.

      September 17, 2013 at 7:18 pm Reply
      1. M1k3y_Koontz

        I wouldn’t oppose removing them…dreads require a 5 minute commitment, allowing the hotdropped to respond, whereas travel fit supers can be dropped on a carrier and jump out again a minute later after they destroy the carrier.

        Remove them, refund SP, refund the supercarrier/titan itself in the form of the parts needed to build it.

        September 17, 2013 at 10:54 pm Reply
        1. To play devils advocate……

          Removing supers and maybe adding a non-combat capital that can jump bridge subs.

          Aside from that, removing supers would still give cap superiority to those who have it and would open the door to some really no holding back wars.

          However, I can see it causing a lot of balance issues, and the biggest thing…there would nothing really to look forward to for an individual.

          No “goals” to set other then max out skills. I think it would kill the game more then leaving them in would.

          I still think it would be cool to add more caps and give then specific roles. Completely re-do the cap tree (including supers).

          This may not be to far fetched, however, because CCP has said that after the sub-cap balance they are going to work on the caps.

          Who knows….

          September 17, 2013 at 11:10 pm Reply
          1. M1k3y_Koontz

            It would encourage dreadnought usage (no more fearing the 100 man supercarrier fleet landing out of dreadnought range, <100km) for one, and it would solve force projection (titan bridges in their current state).

            There are alternatives to removing them, but they lack a dedicated role, something CCP needs to address.

            I'm open to other ideas, but Supercarriers specificly lack any role that doesn't step on another class's role.

            September 17, 2013 at 11:43 pm
          2. Jesus Loves You

            It would be far simpler to simply decrease the fighterbomber range to say 60 km…. no more hide and seek with supers outside (normally fitted) dread range. Then again, long range dread weapons (arties, rails, beams) do exist, its just that nobody uses them.

            September 18, 2013 at 12:00 am
          3. Dirk MacGirk

            Titan pilots and supercap pilots, at least on those characters, aren’t really looking forward anyway. They are looking side to side wondering wtf to do or when they should login. Most supers in this game are logged off at any given time as there aren’t enough fights that use them or targets to gank.

            September 17, 2013 at 11:56 pm
  6. Ashesofempires

    “Can enough dreads engage and kill a super fleet?”

    This is the issue at hand. Can my alliance or coalition field enough dreads, carriers, and support to win a straight up fight between my side and a side that has a pile of supers and titans?

    What’s it take to alpha a well fit Aeon or Nyx, in terms of dreads? More importantly, can I bring enough dreads to maintain that critical mass of alpha damage needed to rapidly kill a super or titan, before they are blotted from the sky by massed fighter bombers, DD’s and hostile capital damage?

    The abstract answer is “yes, if i had X dreads, I could drop them on top of a hostile super fleet and kill enough to win the ISK war, and maybe even wipe the super fleet out.”

    The real answer is no, for a few reasons. First, it takes time to organize a capital fleet of the size needed to win a brawl of that magnitude. In that time, the enemy will almost certainly be alerted to the call for capital pilots, and work to disengage their supers, or set up their own counter drop. It also takes time to move such a large fleet into position, more time for the enemy to disengage or prep their ambush.

    There is also a lot of human factor involved in a capital battle of this scale. Knowing when to drop, when to siege/triage, how many cycles, and when to disengage are all important things for a capital FC to know. Unfortunately, Supers are more forgiving than capitals, because they can’t be shut down by E-war and cannot be tackled, while dreads must be immobile to effectively deal damage. supers can align and wait for bubbles and HIC’s to die and then escape, while carriers and dreads must wait out their siege cycles and then make their escape attempt. Any mistake made by the capital FC will be capitalized upon by the enemy in order to flee or turn the tables. While mistakes made by the super FC are no less egregious, they aren’t as dangerous for the entire fleet because they can be quickly reversed. An order to stand and fight can quickly be changed to “warp the F out as soon as tackle is gone,” while an order to enter siege for one cycle and engage cannot be rescinded.

    Is that a problem, though? Currently, titans are weak on the battlefield. Outside of the 10 minute doomsday, they are underpowered, especially against subcapitals. Supers also have limited battlefield viability, due to lack of drones for subcapital defenses. They are primarily a tool for structure grinding. Unless something changes soon, the days of seeing a super blob slaughtering everything on grid are over.

    September 17, 2013 at 6:47 pm Reply
    1. Alpha maels have been used to great effect.

      What about Alpha dreads? Like Arty nags, piles of them lol.

      I am sure it would be funny. I wonder how many it would take to alpha a super.

      September 17, 2013 at 7:22 pm Reply
      1. Jesus Loves You

        100k alpha per naglfar give or take. Properly fit Nyx with Erebus and Command ship bonuses is at ~38 mil EHP. Without bonuses its at ~26 mil EHP. So uh – more than a fleet of Naglfars to alpha it in one shot. However, cycle time is ~13 seconds on an arty naglfar…

        So if we accept that it can be 3-4 shotted then you need ~100 Naglfars – able to hit at max dmg out to ~60 km.

        In the same time frame you would need half the amount of moroses (at optimal) to rape that Nyx, so I doubt alpha naglfars will be a thing anytime soon.

        September 17, 2013 at 11:58 pm Reply
        1. Ashesofempires

          100 dreads is a lot of ISK, but it’s easily within reach of most coalitions. The question is, will my fleet of ~100 dreads be able to kill more than one or two supers before they are annihilated by clouds of fighter bombers and DD’s.

          Or better yet, can I win the ISK war despite whelping a capfleet in order to bag supers?

          September 18, 2013 at 6:35 pm Reply
  7. Just a carrier...

    Sov sux, RMT wins! That’s all.

    September 17, 2013 at 7:23 pm Reply
  8. War Anyone?

    This article wanders a lot, but I like the topic. I believe that Sov Holding entities in Null Sec are affected by the same pressures that Nations in the real world face. Sov holding entities claim to have many goals, but every sov group’s main concern is staying alive(continuing to hold their sov). Like any nation in the real world, once an alliance gains sovereignty over a piece of space, their next objective(not all of them do it well) is to fortify that location. This manifests itself in Jump bridges, strategic placement of CSAA’s, Development of the passive income sources in that space, and etc..

    Sov holding groups then look to see who may or may not be a threat, and they consciously or subconsciously put other sov holding entities into a sort of tiered list based on threat level.

    Since 2009, at least, the CFC has been an unstoppable force in null sec. There is no indepent sov group in null sec that could repel an attack by the CFC. If the Mittani decides that you have become a threat it’s only a matter of time before you will lose everything(see: Nulli going to fw, -A-‘s destruction, Soco’s destruction, IT Alliance, Northern Coalition, Black Legion Camped into K3 by dbrb, and many others I just don’t know of because they were before my time).

    N3 came into being because a lot of rational leaders of sov holdings groups recognized that they cannot stand alone, and so they intelligently have banded together in order to give themselves a better chance of surviving a CFC assault.

    Just like the years leading up to World War 1, every non CFC group is engaged with the CFC in an economic and military buildup. Each consolidating, fortifying, and preparing for what they believe to be an inevitable conflict.

    If null sec had a multipolar power structure in which multiple actors were equally powerful, and the outcome of a conflict was not certain there would be no need for such large blue lists.

    In fact, the CFC themselves created their large coalition as a response to BOB who was the Unipolar power in EVE prior to the Goonswarm’s ascendancy.

    Just as Russia and China seem to be working together to counter U.S. hegemony in the real world you see Null Sec entities banding together to balance the distribution of power New Eden.

    September 17, 2013 at 9:08 pm Reply
  9. meh

    check the chinese server , couple of alliance haz all the sov , most ppl there live in null instead of high

    September 17, 2013 at 9:30 pm Reply
    1. M1k3y_Koontz

      There is also next to no PVP, just a bunch of carebears, so who would want to play there.

      September 17, 2013 at 11:00 pm Reply
      1. Filip Viruk Drab

        1/2 of tranquillity

        September 18, 2013 at 6:44 am Reply
  10. IBIS

    jesus could u be a lit bit more professional or do more homeworks? Russian Coalition never heard of it seriously, even the implication of the name is false.

    September 17, 2013 at 11:08 pm Reply
    1. i did do my homework, and there is a current Russian coalition of sorts, do your homework.
      However the DRF did exist and controlled all the drone regions for a while before having a civil war.

      September 18, 2013 at 1:28 am Reply
      1. anon

        i think he means stainwagon, which is kinda THE russian coalition.
        although its not exactly a coalition, more of a state of mind.

        September 18, 2013 at 9:39 am Reply
  11. IBIS

    just because EMP is temporarily blue to n3 does that imply emp is part of n3? oh gosh

    September 17, 2013 at 11:12 pm Reply
    1. EMP moved from the south to the north and made a deal/told/decided to take CE, that implies, temp blue or not, they are/were working on behalf of N3. So they, for the purpose of defining the large blue relationships in null sec, are part of N3 as apposed to on their own or part of CFC.

      September 18, 2013 at 1:31 am Reply
      1. Anti Goon

        Does that also imply that Init and Solar are referring to the cfc because they are blue atm?

        September 18, 2013 at 9:01 am Reply
        1. yoghi

          yes

          September 18, 2013 at 11:26 am Reply
  12. Highsec Bear

    In regards to blobs of Supercapitals and Titans, I’ve been casually wondering, what if we give both a gravity well effect to discourage this behaviour and encourage a more tactical, refined use of Supercapitals and Titans (i.e. splitting the blob up into smaller scale divisions employed to attack/defend multiple objectives)?

    In saying “gravity well,” I mean, make Titans and maybe Supercapitals (to a smaller extent) have a gravity effect on all surrounding ships (including other Titans/Supers) that reduces agility and speed (based on range). The effect should be cumulative to the point where, for example, trying to align your Battleship 10km from a group of 15 Titans might take 20 or 30 seconds (arbitrary numbers, balance accordingly).

    This would discourage the indiscriminate use of Super blobs, encourage more creative usages of Supers/Titans (i.e. waves?, or more hilariously, warping Titans onto enemy fleets to disrupt mobility?), and is in-line with the storyline fiction of Titans as these hulking, planet-sized warships that immediately have a gigantic impact on the fight the moment they are deployed.

    I leave it up to the better experienced to consider this, just thought I’d offer it up. It would be kind of cool to give back Titans an AoE ability like a gravity well, I think that would make them a little more significant and interesting in the game.

    September 18, 2013 at 2:12 am Reply
    1. Hian

      That is the first suggestion i have heard that might actually make things better and more exiting. And is way less radical then many others. +1 for creativity if nothing else!

      September 18, 2013 at 7:03 pm Reply
  13. dafaq

    The tactic…. made me care even less to read this. Good job… idk you may have some good ideas, but i doubt it and i wont read this to find out. Here is my suggestion to people proposing super changes.. follow this simple checklist:
    #1 Do you fly a super?
    #2 Do you own one or more supers?
    #3 Do you know what a game designer does?

    If your answer is “No” to any of these questions, than don’t write an article about super changes.

    September 18, 2013 at 4:44 am Reply
    1. Your a Retard

      Funny enough, he has owned and lost super and is sadly quite aware of what game designers do.

      September 21, 2013 at 2:30 am Reply
  14. I just do not know

    Simple, remove the e-war imunity that Supers have, that will be a nice start. See how that develops, it might work out, it might not.

    September 18, 2013 at 9:45 am Reply
  15. The Obvious

    New regions with no gates to current, only access through WHs. No gates and too far to cyno over from current regions. But able to take sov, build stations, etc. Movement will be dictated by jump bridges and cynos within the region itself. This forms ‘islands’ of gameplay that still can interact with the rest EvE per usual.

    September 18, 2013 at 2:50 pm Reply
    1. The Obvious

      To further, every system within a constellation will be connected by a chain of statics each day, with 1 or more systems in that constellation containing a static to another constellation within the region and a less frequent but still common static to ‘old space’ within the constellation.

      September 18, 2013 at 2:53 pm Reply
  16. AA

    My suggestion to ballance out this with supercaps and titans is that something I will come to call “Industrial Sov Hubs”. These are speciall systems that has an very unique “materia” needed to build these Supercaps and Titans, so here you can build a new sort of structures that can be upgraded depending on ceirtain goals that needs to be met within the system. What these hubs also do is that they give your alliance or corpration the exclusive right to own an maximum amount of supercaps and titans and this amount not beeing very high, ( I am very new to eve and don’t really know much. But lets play with the thought that a max “upgraded” hub can add 6 supercaps and 1 titan.)

    Also we implement in surrounding systems some new PI resources that is required to keep the supercaps and titans going and to be operational. These PI stations can be attacked and be put offline if not defended, here we might add some small AI defenses that will suffice some minor defenses versus lesser fleet gangs. But still allows small groups to infiltrate systems and knock out the fuel.

    Now I have not given this idea very much thought but, more ideas could be added and tweaked to it.

    I could write down the pros and cons, but I’d rather let you guys play with this idea.

    My finest Regards,
    Aeuron Asgard

    September 18, 2013 at 9:26 pm Reply
  17. whatever

    “some have suggested adding a maintenance costs to owning them. However, none of the above … will actually do anything about the groups that currently have hundreds of them.”

    Do you have problems drawing logic chains?
    If I have hundreds of supers, then I will have to pay maintenance costs for them all, thus it will affect me.

    September 19, 2013 at 12:39 pm Reply
  18. Some Vet

    Hopefully one day my dream of a Full fleet of Scorpions with ECM bursts and FOF missiles (to confuse the enemy not to do any actual damage) that camps right on top of the enemy fleet backed up with another full fleet of medium/long range battleships (outside of Scorpion ECM burst range ofc) will be realized

    One day this dream will come true I know it

    September 19, 2013 at 9:53 pm Reply

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