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Galactic Stagnation

Author
Lukka
#1 - 2017-05-30 17:17:35 UTC
Please note that any opinion voiced in this post is representative purely of my own thoughts and not representative of my corporation or the wider Eve community.

I have played Eve for over 8 years at this point and some of you may refer to me as a Bittervet. Perhaps I am indeed bitter in many of my thoughts, but I shall set aside my overwhelming desire to evoke irony, sarcasm and blame for just a few precious moments to collect my thoughts.

The EVE universe, as most of you know, is a vast wilderness full of challenges, tension and opportunity. We live by the rules of a cutthroat environment where one small mistake can send us hurtling into the jaws of ruin. However, the universe as a whole is a far different scenario: like a bag of marbles once dropped, the marbles roll around until they finally come to rest. Such a way it has to be because the floor on which they fell is solid, unwavering. All systems set in motion must at some point reach their equilibrium.

Continued conflict in a universe like EVE requires a dynamic environment with lucrative rewards to draw players from their familiar cubby holes into the frightening unknown. It needs to appeal to the little guy and the big alliance alike. I would like to suggest that significant galactic events be brought into being. Some of these would be of small scale, such as asteroids of value passing through a constellation. Larger events would draw the attention of major alliances, incidents such as alien (or Jove, if you please) invasion of an entire region. Rewards for big scale events could include limited ship blueprint drops. Not just any limited ships, but ones which host unique traits of particular fleet or personal value. For example, a powerful battleship which takes greatly reduced damage from area damage attacks or frigates that combine stealth with interdiction nullification. Once the event is over a similar reward may not be seen for quite some time.

Big events will almost certainly attract new players as the news spills forth, new players bring revenue. I honestly think that we have come to the point where retaining the status quo is untenable for the continued fluorishing of this universe.

Eve isn't dying, but it's certainly stagnant.
DaReaper
Net 7
Cannon.Fodder
#2 - 2017-05-30 17:19:41 UTC
one of the biggest issues is eve is currently in flux. ATM ccp is on a path of repair. This causes people to get bored, and repairing crap is boring. I still feel after pos' are removed, ccp will bring out something big and shiney to shake it up a up.

OMG Comet Mining idea!!! Comet Mining!

Eve For life.

Kristin Sabrioski
The Chrysanthemum Project
#3 - 2017-05-30 17:21:03 UTC
The upcoming changes has something to do with it. Everybody is scared of how the changes will affect their empires so everyone is in this state of hoarding as much resources as possible. I'm sure that once the changes hit and people have something new to fight over, that wars will resume, probably with added ferocity.
Gimme Sake
State War Academy
Caldari State
#4 - 2017-05-30 17:22:51 UTC  |  Edited by: Gimme Sake
The incoming changes to mining mechanics might provide the incentive for a large conflict.

Unless the fat cats are already too fat to be affected, of course.

"Never not blob!" ~ Plato

Jenn aSide
Shinigami Miners
Already Replaced.
#5 - 2017-05-30 17:34:59 UTC  |  Edited by: Jenn aSide
Lukka wrote:
Please note that any opinion voiced in this post is representative purely of my own thoughts and not representative of my corporation or the wider Eve community.

I have played Eve for over 8 years at this point and some of you may refer to me as a Bittervet. Perhaps I am indeed bitter in many of my thoughts, but I shall set aside my overwhelming desire to evoke irony, sarcasm and blame for just a few precious moments to collect my thoughts.

The EVE universe, as most of you know, is a vast wilderness full of challenges, tension and opportunity. We live by the rules of a cutthroat environment where one small mistake can send us hurtling into the jaws of ruin. However, the universe as a whole is a far different scenario: like a bag of marbles once dropped, the marbles roll around until they finally come to rest. Such a way it has to be because the floor on which they fell is solid, unwavering. All systems set in motion must at some point reach their equilibrium.

Continued conflict in a universe like EVE requires a dynamic environment with lucrative rewards to draw players from their familiar cubby holes into the frightening unknown. It needs to appeal to the little guy and the big alliance alike. I would like to suggest that significant galactic events be brought into being. Some of these would be of small scale, such as asteroids of value passing through a constellation. Larger events would draw the attention of major alliances, incidents such as alien (or Jove, if you please) invasion of an entire region. Rewards for big scale events could include limited ship blueprint drops. Not just any limited ships, but ones which host unique traits of particular fleet or personal value. For example, a powerful battleship which takes greatly reduced damage from area damage attacks or frigates that combine stealth with interdiction nullification. Once the event is over a similar reward may not be seen for quite some time.

Big events will almost certainly attract new players as the news spills forth, new players bring revenue. I honestly think that we have come to the point where retaining the status quo is untenable for the continued flourishing of this universe.

Eve isn't dying, but it's certainly stagnant.


Events happen all the time. They've hyped up in game events like the Coronation of the Amarrian Empress, the Drifter invasion, Drifter Incursions, all the things revolving around the 'seasonal events' like Crimson Harvest etc. 3 and a half years ago they tried an even more ambitious tack, which only proved that CCP run events are disasters waiting to happen.

For the most part, CCP generated 'events' don't make much of a splash (except those like the one I linked), it's the spontaneous player made events that make the news and draw in players. CCPs last iteration of the sovereignty system squashed a lot of the things that made truly spontaneous events possible (and when the point was brought up that the changes they were making would do this, CCP responded by saying that 'smaller scale activity will make up for it', which of course it hasn't).

Meaning no offense, but ideas like the ones you suggest Lukka could be disastrous. Big, rich groups would find a way to swarm and farm any such event or new content (CCP is about to learn this with their high sec PVE expansion the promised for the winter, because Incursions and SOE missions didn't teach teach them about how non-high sec players react to wealth generating PVE in high sec), Those "one of a kind" battleships wouldn't be used in fleets, they'd be used in scams and be used to line the pockets of the already mega rich.

What CCP should do is basically un-do some of the changes they've made since winter 2012 and let players be the driving force for activity and memorable actions. While well intentioned, many of those changes have been 'constricting' and anti-sandbox.
Do Little
Bluenose Trading
#6 - 2017-05-30 17:45:16 UTC
Players provide the diverse, connected, interdependent, adaptive entities that make Eve a complex system but, as in the real world, long tail events are rare. I suspect the upcoming conversion of outposts to faction citadels will be one of them but, who knows - diplomacy may carry the day!

Most of the time we're happy to coast along in our comfortable ruts and then it's time for a disruptive, paradigm shifting event. I don't think CCP can plan these. At best they can try to inject something into the game that will destabilize things and encourage them - not too often, most of the time we're happy to coast along in our comfortable ruts!
Black Pedro
Mine.
#7 - 2017-05-30 18:00:44 UTC  |  Edited by: Black Pedro
Lukka wrote:
Eve isn't dying, but it's certainly stagnant.
This is entirely predictible when you take the strategy of making everyone safe and rich and hope them to come up with reasons to fight each other. When players have everything they want, they aren't going to risk anything of significance in attacking anyone they know they might lose to. What you get is everyone just building and no one fighting because there is no need to spend the effort or risk a war they might lose.

I think we probably are past the point of no return. The developers have committed to version of Eve where players are so rich and safe that essentially only consensual fights will be the norm. This may make some people feel better, but isn't going to stimulate any great wars or meaningful conflict, and will continue to undermine the competetive core of the game.

This doesn't mean Eve can't be fun if you are into fleet skirmishes where only honour is at stake. But if you wanted to feel part of a shared universe where your actions matter and you were in real competition with the other players for dominance, well, Eve's aspirations to that are fading and that game is in the past. The big wars of consequence are probably over, forever, so don't set your hopes on a return to the golden age of Eve.

I'd love to be proven wrong by the upcoming mining platforms or outpost replacements, but I can't see it. There is just no reason for large groups to start real wars with other large groups anymore. Nullsec space is largely interchangeble and supports huge numbers of players, so the only reason to fight is for bragging rights. Perhaps that will happen once one group gains such a huge resource advantage they feel they cannot lose (although probably not given the number of person-hours it will take to clear sov timers and Upwell structures), but even then, with asset safety you will just see a repeat of World War Bee where the outnumbered side justs turtles up, has their assets magically transported to lowsec, and starts somewhere else.

Eve isn't dying, and I still love the game immensely. It is really the only PvP sandbox game out there that even aspires to be a full-on player-driven game, but the sad reality is that the glory days are probably behind us. Unless CCP can come up with a Hail Mary when they release new Jove (or whatever) space in a few years, there will be no more big wars. There just isn't reason enough to motivate thousands of human beings to fight over something when the other side has nothing at risk nor anything you want/need. Many people called for a kinder, gentler version of Eve so I hope they are enjoying this less meaningful and less consequential version of the game. The PCU seems to suggest they are in the minority, but that is the way the winds are blowing.

OP, I suggest you find something of smaller scope in the game that you enjoy instead of placing your hopes on top-level content providing meaning for your game play. There are still many smaller niches where you can make a difference and engage in meaningful game play. Evict someone from a wormhole. Wardec a highsec industrial corp into oblivion. Take control of an industrial niche. Make your own content and enjoy the game as you see fit, ignoring the calls of a large segement of the players and significant number of developers to nerf the game into complete irrelevance.

Play Eve as it was conceived, not as the carebears want it to be. Play it your way until you can't and then walk away. That is what I intend to do.
Jenn aSide
Shinigami Miners
Already Replaced.
#8 - 2017-05-30 18:20:06 UTC
Black Pedro wrote:
Lukka wrote:
Eve isn't dying, but it's certainly stagnant.
The developers have committed to version of Eve where players are so rich and safe that essentially only consensual fights will be the norm.


Maybe, maybe the moon mining thing helps this a bit, those 'timers' for when the structure can use the laser to form the belt is not going to be easy to conceal and some non-sov holding groups are going to love the idea behind guranteed content.

But otherwise I totally agree. CCP has been stuffing the game with rewards since 2009. Respawning anomalies in null sec, incursions (mostly farmed in high sec), Sisters of EVE missions, blitzable burner missions people learned to turn into 200 mil isk per hour wealth printing machines, FW missions and plexes and even pvp generating wealth as incentive for people to do FW etc etc.

And add to that the ways CCP has increased damage output on ships (like with drone damage mods) and you get a situation where it's soooo easy to earn isk that an AFK VNI can make enough plex for game time just afking anoms for 42 minutes a day.

you are probably right. CCP has painted itself into corner, because if they take away the rewards now (like stopping the re-spawning anoms and belts in null, stopping incursions and the Rorq mining and burner blitzing and lvl5 blitzing etc etc), lots of players wouldn't be able to adjust and the economy would flounder for months or more.

I don't know what could be done other than hope the coming war over null sec outposts spurs some needed destruction.
Lulu Lunette
Savage Moon Society
#9 - 2017-05-30 20:24:48 UTC
I'd actually love to read about how our mirror universe is doing over in China. They've had some epic, big battles of their own and it's all different groups than the same old ones you read about on Tranquility.

OP I suppose you needed to vent your frustration about the lack of news in Eve lately, but I think the best is to just worry about your own fun! Smile As in.. Watch your own bobber lol

I used to think I wanted to be an empire builder but that ended up being way harder and more like a second job than I expected. I doubt that any alliance would have just let me move in and take space on their doorstep. Used to spend hours studying DOTLAN for unclaimed systems (there's usually a handful of them) but most people would tell me that we'd be wrecked in a second because it probably is semi-claimed by a major alliance's renter.

@lunettelulu7

Black Pedro
Mine.
#10 - 2017-05-30 20:32:58 UTC
Jenn aSide wrote:
Black Pedro wrote:
Lukka wrote:
Eve isn't dying, but it's certainly stagnant.
The developers have committed to version of Eve where players are so rich and safe that essentially only consensual fights will be the norm.


Maybe, maybe the moon mining thing helps this a bit, those 'timers' for when the structure can use the laser to form the belt is not going to be easy to conceal and some non-sov holding groups are going to love the idea behind guranteed content.

But otherwise I totally agree. CCP has been stuffing the game with rewards since 2009. Respawning anomalies in null sec, incursions (mostly farmed in high sec), Sisters of EVE missions, blitzable burner missions people learned to turn into 200 mil isk per hour wealth printing machines, FW missions and plexes and even pvp generating wealth as incentive for people to do FW etc etc.

And add to that the ways CCP has increased damage output on ships (like with drone damage mods) and you get a situation where it's soooo easy to earn isk that an AFK VNI can make enough plex for game time just afking anoms for 42 minutes a day.

you are probably right. CCP has painted itself into corner, because if they take away the rewards now (like stopping the re-spawning anoms and belts in null, stopping incursions and the Rorq mining and burner blitzing and lvl5 blitzing etc etc), lots of players wouldn't be able to adjust and the economy would flounder for months or more.

I don't know what could be done other than hope the coming war over null sec outposts spurs some needed destruction.

I can't totally blame the developers. A lot of their decisions seem to make sense at the time. You want Aegis Sov to be viewed as a success? Well buff anomalies so players flock to nullsec and juice the activity numbers. You want Citadels to be a success? Make them so incredibly safe and defensible that players have no choice but to embrace them over the other options. You want group PvE to be a success? Give them economy-unbalancing rewards so players keep doing them ad naseum even to the exclusion of competing in other facets of the game. But without some overall plan safety creep and income creep keep eroding the game, removing content from a game where the other players are the content and continually devaluing resources to the point acquiring them becomes meaningless.

The real problem as you identify is that it is much, much harder to go back. Sure, it seems like a good idea to make Upwell structures super safe because you want strong uptake and then you can always revisit them make them more risky. But that almost never seems to happen. Either because developer resources are needed elsewhere, or because, like Incursions, the player backlash is too strong for any developer to find the backbone to administer the bitter-tasting medicine necessary to restore some balance to the game. Players get addicted to easy and safe income and howl like toddlers when you try to take their candy away for their own good.

I think only drastic and sweeping action can save the game now but I see no evidence that CCP is willing or even aware of the issue. I mean, nullsec bounties are out of control by most any metric and have been for almost a year yet CCP seems unable or unwilling to act. What is needed is a complete rebalancing of rewards from top to bottom across the game to incentivize risk taking and empire building and some of the more egrigious buffs to safety over the last 5 or so years revisited to put players at risk to each other again. I think that it is too late for that though for that given the lack of overall vision and the general slow-down in development we have seen in recent years, and CCPs reluctance for anything other than incremental changes to not upset the apple cart. The Eve we have now is close to the Eve we will have until the servers shut off a decade or two from now so you better enjoy the game as it is. Good thing that is still a pretty good game, even if the grandiose and headline-grabbing greatness of Ye Olde Eve Online is in the past.

But honestly, I would love to be mistaken. Nullsec leaders, please contrive some reason to start destroying stuff and prove me wrong.


Dracvlad
Taishi Combine
Astral Alliance
#11 - 2017-05-30 20:38:22 UTC
Actually I am having fun.

When the going gets tough the Gankers get their CSM rep to change mechanics in their favour.

Blocked: Teckos Pech, Sonya Corvinus, baltec1, Shae Tadaruwa, Wander Prian, Daichi Yamato, Jonah Gravenstein, Merin Ryskin, Linus Gorp

DeMichael Crimson
Republic University
Minmatar Republic
#12 - 2017-05-30 21:27:05 UTC
The OP has a point and I agree with it. CCP should consider and include little Corps as well as solo players when making changes and adding new content to the game.


DMC
Teckos Pech
Patriotic Tendencies
Goonswarm Federation
#13 - 2017-05-30 22:52:41 UTC
Black Pedro wrote:

The real problem as you identify is that it is much, much harder to go back. Sure, it seems like a good idea to make Upwell structures super safe because you want strong uptake and then you can always revisit them make them more risky. But that almost never seems to happen. Either because developer resources are needed elsewhere, or because, like Incursions, the player backlash is too strong for any developer to find the backbone to administer the bitter-tasting medicine necessary to restore some balance to the game. Players get addicted to easy and safe income and howl like toddlers when you try to take their candy away for their own good.


I think "going back" in a game with emergence is not really feasible. There is only going forward. Not that going forward can't try to fix some of these issues, but merely undoing them probably will not work like intuition would suggest.

"The curious task of economics is to demonstrate to men how little they really know about what they imagine they can design."--Friedrich August von Hayek

8 Golden Rules for EVE Online

Alincer Trossereides
University of Caille
Gallente Federation
#14 - 2017-05-30 23:38:15 UTC
Lulu Lunette wrote:

I used to think I wanted to be an empire builder but that ended up being way harder and more like a second job than I expected. I doubt that any alliance would have just let me move in and take space on their doorstep. Used to spend hours studying DOTLAN for unclaimed systems (there's usually a handful of them) but most people would tell me that we'd be wrecked in a second because it probably is semi-claimed by a major alliance's renter.


This. When I finally looked into EVE a few months ago I thought I had finally found my empire building MMO. I've finished all the Skill Training for my Alpha Clone as of a couple of weeks ago, but I find myself reluctant to pull the trigger on the next phase of my plan and go Alpha. Seems like no amount of combat expertise, tactics of strategy can overcome the sheer hugeness required to get a foothold in nul. To be fair, I just might be too stupid for this game.

Sometimes nothing can be a real cool hand.

Lulu Lunette
Savage Moon Society
#15 - 2017-05-31 01:01:58 UTC
Alincer Trossereides wrote:
Lulu Lunette wrote:

I used to think I wanted to be an empire builder but that ended up being way harder and more like a second job than I expected. I doubt that any alliance would have just let me move in and take space on their doorstep. Used to spend hours studying DOTLAN for unclaimed systems (there's usually a handful of them) but most people would tell me that we'd be wrecked in a second because it probably is semi-claimed by a major alliance's renter.


This. When I finally looked into EVE a few months ago I thought I had finally found my empire building MMO. I've finished all the Skill Training for my Alpha Clone as of a couple of weeks ago, but I find myself reluctant to pull the trigger on the next phase of my plan and go Alpha. Seems like no amount of combat expertise, tactics of strategy can overcome the sheer hugeness required to get a foothold in nul. To be fair, I just might be too stupid for this game.


Oh it's not stupidity, you're definitely no dummy; I think if you can figure out how to be in this game long enough you're smarter than the average person for sure. I think nullsec requires a special trust and a team of awesome people as well as people who would rather be followers than leaders and mix in some awesome branding or even just hilarious MS Paint work for propaganda and you're golden. Unless you're jobless and you can be a CEO full time.

@lunettelulu7

TackyTachy1
Doomheim
#16 - 2017-05-31 01:25:38 UTC
On my fourth year I've pretty well figured out what I want to do without worrying so much over macro events going down around me, thing is the game changes and that's part of the game, dealing with the changes. Only thing I've ever been is a solo multi-boxer as that fits my disposition and rather erratic schedule. I've made no friends, joined no alliances, run two corps with six players and one left in his noob corp as that has it's advantages. I positively enjoy my game play, whether it's killing rats in null-sec, mining in hi-sec, sneaking in (and out!) of worm holes or whatever, I love it. Well, maybe not all of it, especially when I do something stupid and lose a ship (or three).

Thing is it's all there, you get tired of doing something there is always another world or two of more stuff to do. I've never been much at PvP, what few kills I have amongst my characters have either been through luck, an accident or somebody being morbidly stupid and hell, you just got to kill somebody like that.

I play mostly every day but take the occasional day off, especially if I got an RL thing needs doing. My one complaint, and that ain't really that big a deal, is the constant changes to keep the limited attention span folks on board. As it stands we could probably go a year or more with no changes and many of us wouldn't even notice. Kind of like the government, pick your country: If they'd just come in every other month or so, look around, kick the tires, dust off the keyboards, collect their paychecks then go the hell home with no new laws, regulations or world shaking announcements we'd all be way better off.

Fly safe, unless your shooting at me, then happy crashes.

Forum Rep for a bunch of characters, couple corps and one seriously Lost In Space multiboxer.

Shiloh Templeton
Cheyenne HET Co
#17 - 2017-05-31 01:37:46 UTC
Where is the visionary at CCP? Who is creating whole new aspects of gameplay or areas to explore as with Faction Warfare or Wormhole expansions? There's lots of updating things, but inevitably that just annoys someone who liked the old way better. As with the upcoming T3 balance pass. It may be an improvement, but does anyone think it will increase player count?

Sister Stetille
University of Caille
Gallente Federation
#18 - 2017-05-31 03:04:01 UTC
If you want to reduce the stagnation in null sec, all you need to do is remove all of the player generated, static system, infinite wealth sources.

Remove ability to generate your own ore and combat anomalies from the game and make them randomly spawn throughout null. Make the infinite moon goo into a finite source per moon that randomly changes as they deplete.

This will force alliances to search for, and fight over, all wealth sources in null. Sure this will basically remove the entire Empire Building aspect of null alliances, but you either have active PVP or passive Empire Building.
Coralas
Center for Advanced Studies
Gallente Federation
#19 - 2017-05-31 04:06:49 UTC
Alincer Trossereides wrote:
Lulu Lunette wrote:

I used to think I wanted to be an empire builder but that ended up being way harder and more like a second job than I expected. I doubt that any alliance would have just let me move in and take space on their doorstep. Used to spend hours studying DOTLAN for unclaimed systems (there's usually a handful of them) but most people would tell me that we'd be wrecked in a second because it probably is semi-claimed by a major alliance's renter.


This. When I finally looked into EVE a few months ago I thought I had finally found my empire building MMO. I've finished all the Skill Training for my Alpha Clone as of a couple of weeks ago, but I find myself reluctant to pull the trigger on the next phase of my plan and go Alpha. Seems like no amount of combat expertise, tactics of strategy can overcome the sheer hugeness required to get a foothold in nul. To be fair, I just might be too stupid for this game.


In EVE to be an emperor you'll need dominant personality traits, or at least the ability to rationally recognize when to fake it (almost all the time).

For just living in null successfully you can do that solo with no assistance just fine as long as you understand the concept of being hunted or camped and the mechanics of avoiding it. If you want to make it easy on yourself, then CAS is the best NPC starter corp for it, and if you already failed at EVE by not selecting CAS, then you can either make a new character in CAS or you can join pandemic horde, or brave, or karma fleet, or eve uni or find a more obscure newbie friendly corp.
Shawn en Tilavine
Aliastra
Gallente Federation
#20 - 2017-05-31 04:35:03 UTC
Sister Stetille wrote:
... but you either have active PVP or passive Empire Building.


Sorry, but I beg to differ. The two are not mutually exclusive. Where I live in Nul, things are hardly stagnant, and we have a community of players with diverse talents and interests. We have industrialists, capitalists and a committed and experienced defense force, not to mention a sophisticated intel network, that all work together in support of each other, their respective corp's and our alliance. We all have a blast and we all make good ISK.

It may not be common, but it does exist in New Eden.

Respectfully Submitted.

"The world ain't fair, there is no Santa Claus, and not everyone gets a F'n trophy just for showing up. Welcome to the real world. Welcome to Eve."

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