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FW: rebalancing NPCs and you

First post First post
Author
CCP Ytterbium
C C P
C C P Alliance
#1 - 2012-05-10 16:13:48 UTC  |  Edited by: CCP Ytterbium
Alright folks, as stated in the latest FW blog, there are certain points in Factional Warfare that still need to be looked at after Inferno.

One of these are the NPCs; we all have grown to hate them as they jam you non stop for 5 minutes, or laugh at them when speed tanking them while capturing a complex. So, let's try to find ways to make them interesting here.


We have some ideas floating around, one of them is to:


  • Upgrade their AI with target switching mechanics - just like Sleepers and Incursion Sanshas
  • Revamp their attributes to be more on par with PvP fits, while still allowing new pilots to compete (FW barrier of entry is supposed to be low)
  • Cut their respawn numbers - they should be used as an activity if there is no PvP going around, but not impair PvP when it is happening
  • Possibly use them to assist a losing faction; for example, have tougher NPCs than usual spawn for a faction with less solar systems, or attack opposing members at gates (not neutrals)


Remember, all of these are just high-pitch ideas at the moment that are posted here to get your constructive input and a discussion going. So stay cool and remember, the spice must flow.


Another point where your feedback would be most appreciated is regarding your own experience facing them as they are right now:


  • Think a FW NPC is plain broken, crap or annoying? Post its exact name here, and explain why and what. Again, please remember, this discussion is about FW NPCs, not mission / deadspace / Incursion / Sleepers or whatever (we know there are a lot of them to fix in other features as well, but let's not get lost here shall we?).
  • What do you think about Navy NPCs when you go to enemy high-security space? What would you do about that?
  • What about the standing mechanic that govern NPC attack behavior? When do you feel they should engage you? Low standings? Capturing a complex?



Thanks for your feedback.
Morwen Lagann
Tyrathlion Interstellar
#2 - 2012-05-10 16:32:00 UTC
A common and recurring complaint I hear from friends in FW is summed up pretty easily in two words: NPC EWAR.

More specifically:
Amarr Militia: "OMG my frigate is suddenly a stationary battleship because the Minmatar NPCs have hax webifiers and target painters!"
Caldari Militia: "OMG I can't target anything because the Gallente NPCs are damping my targeting range down to 5km!"
Gallente Militia: "OMG I can't target anything because the Caldari NPCs are permajamming me!"
Minmatar Militia: "OMG I can't hit anything because I was already fighting in falloff and the Amarr NPCs are tracking distrupting me!" (alternatively: "lol, tracking disruption doesn't work on stealth bombers, n00b NPCs")

Morwen Lagann

CEO, Tyrathlion Interstellar

Coordinator, Arataka Research Consortium

Owner, The Golden Masque

Shandir
Indigo Archive
#3 - 2012-05-10 17:15:47 UTC  |  Edited by: Shandir
CCP Ytterbium wrote:
...

Have you considered coding NPCs to simulate hunting players in space, perhaps having a somewhat random timer of sitting still where NPCs will pretend to be probing you down, and then launch a small gang to fight.
Also interesting would be if they could warp in to assist friendly fleets under attack, or try to gank roaming enemy gangs.

I ask because when I first heard about the sleepers, I thought that was what they did - that they came looking for you when you trespassed in their territory, and it sounded awesome.

It would be nice, generally, if the NPCs could start to take a more active role than just being floating targets - why can't they want to kick our asses sometimes?

Edit: FW Noob Disclaimer - I have not joined FW *yet* but these recent changes intrugue me and I may join soon.
Kurai Okala
Okala Corp
#4 - 2012-05-10 17:59:08 UTC
Are you only interested in FW Complex NPCs or are you also looking at FW Mission NPCs?

Denuo Secus
#5 - 2012-05-10 18:34:21 UTC
CCP Ytterbium wrote:
...
  • Cut their respawn numbers - they should be used as an activity if there is no PvP going around, but not impair PvP when it is happening...


  • This!

    It's the only issue I have with NPCs in FW plexes: they disturb my PvP. I enjoy solo and very small scale PvP in FW. So if we're - for example - two against 5 WTs...additional NPCs are a very irritating factor. Sometimes we just cannot enter a hostile plex for PvP because there are 10+ NPCs.
    Milton Middleson
    Rifterlings
    #6 - 2012-05-10 19:11:43 UTC  |  Edited by: Milton Middleson
    If we don't want NPCs messing up PvP (I don't), but don't want to ditch them entirely (I don't), a possible solution would be to make the plex have two rooms: one with the NPCs and one with the actual plex timer. Hostile militia that warp to the plex and take the accel gate in wind up in the first room and need to kill all the NPCs to unlock a second gate. Friendly militia just go straight to the final room. (This also gives an advantage to defenders who respond quickly or attackers who can clear the NPCs quickly).

    This doesn't solve the issue of NPC difficulty/numbers, but it does mean that you're not going to lose a fight because the rats had you webbed or TDed. It also prevents people from AFK speed tanking plexes, since you will have to kill the rats.
    Kurai Okala
    Okala Corp
    #7 - 2012-05-10 19:39:12 UTC
    Milton Middleson wrote:
    If we don't want NPCs messing up PvP (I don't), but don't want to ditch them entirely (I don't), a possible solution would be to make the plex have two rooms: one with the NPCs and one with the actual plex timer. Hostile militia that warp to the plex and take the accel gate in wind up in the first room and need to kill all the NPCs to unlock a second gate. Friendly militia just go straight to the final room. (This also gives an advantage to defenders who respond quickly or attackers who can clear the NPCs quickly).

    This doesn't solve the issue of NPC difficulty/numbers, but it does mean that you're not going to lose a fight because the rats had you webbed or TDed. It also prevents people from AFK speed tanking plexes, since you will have to kill the rats.


    Mixing NPCs with PVP has always seemed like a bad idea to me but I don't want to see FW NPCs removed all together either so I like this idea.

    Also, another +1 to reducing NPC numbers but improving their AI to make them mimic PVP. I don't think FW players should have to gimp their PVP effectiveness to effeciently deal with enemy NPCs (get those PVE fits out of a PVP feature)
    Fidelium Mortis
    Minor Major Miners LLC
    #8 - 2012-05-10 23:49:27 UTC
    Morwen Lagann wrote:
    A common and recurring complaint I hear from friends in FW is summed up pretty easily in two words: NPC EWAR.

    More specifically:
    Amarr Militia: "OMG my frigate is suddenly a stationary battleship because the Minmatar NPCs have hax webifiers and target painters!"
    Caldari Militia: "OMG I can't target anything because the Gallente NPCs are damping my targeting range down to 5km!"
    Gallente Militia: "OMG I can't target anything because the Caldari NPCs are permajamming me!"
    Minmatar Militia: "OMG I can't hit anything because I was already fighting in falloff and the Amarr NPCs are tracking distrupting me!" (alternatively: "lol, tracking disruption doesn't work on stealth bombers, n00b NPCs")



    As far as FW Plexes go:
    Um... actually these aren't the sentiments at all. For the most part the main frustration with EWAR is with Caldari rats which can be particularly nasty if they happen to get multiple jamming cycles off, and additionally they use missiles which makes it tougher to mitigate NPC damage during a fight. Overall, this is compounded by introducing fairly standard PvE fights as the backdrop for PvP activities, which gives offensive pilots a significant advantage since they can fit specifically for PvP. Plus with their current implementation, FW plexes are just plain boring and really lack a meaningful objective. In theory they should feel like an assault on an enemy facility, but in practice it's a mind numbing timed grind.

    The only good thing the FW plexes have going for them is they provide a way to accrue navy tags, and do a pretty good job of promoting skirmish PvP.

    Now for some suck mitigation:
    1. Do we need/want FW plex (or general navy) NPCs? I think that unless they convey at least some semblance of the wider conflict they should be removed.

    2. NPCs should actually do something. For instance, could a FW plex be a mini-scenario, like a disabled freighter that has RR and a small defense fleet that is guarding against an opposing strike force?

    3. NPCs should help - not hinder - immersion. So yes, fewer NPCs with more advanced AI would be a good start. Also why not have both NPC navies represented in the FW plexes (witth the advantage to the defenders)? This reinforces the idea of an active conflict, and you might be able to introduce some weak friendly NPC RR that GTFOs once an enemy player joins the fray, which makes the plexes a bit more PvP fit friendly (especially buffer tanks).

    Just some thoughts...

    ICRS - Intergalactic Certified Rocket Surgeon

    Veshta Yoshida
    PIE Inc.
    Praetoria Imperialis Excubitoris
    #9 - 2012-05-11 03:16:47 UTC  |  Edited by: Veshta Yoshida
    NPC's could all be the grossly overpowered Concord vessels if only the AI/behaviour was coded right. Not sure if the actual ships need much changing at all to be honest, eWar could do with a downwards tweak but I am hoping that the eWar revision will make any such change pointless .. you are still planning on revising eWar I take it?

    Have them protect that which they were meant to first and foremost .. the complex, aka. timer, instead of everything with the proper standings.

    - If a person enters capture range (CR), check standings, if hated -> shoot him down.
    - If a person leaves capture range, but has taken no hostile action -> keep him locked but do nothing further.
    - If more than one with hated standings are in CR, then use threat list akin to the one used by Incursion Sansha.
    - If a person is in plex but not in CR, lock him up -> do nothing further.
    - If a person is in plex but not in CR and takes hostile action against guards -> shoot him down but never leave striking distance of timer which is to be protected.
    * Basically have them ignore anyone who is not a direct threat to the plex or its personnel.

    Add some sentries around the timer to assist with LR targets (especially in Gallente plexes where NPC weapons are worse than BB guns) and to make the solo AB frig capture an impossibility. It is a military installation damnit, surely they have some gun emplacements .. even the smallest of the small pirate installations have some defensive guns in place!

    The NPCs are now something to do when no pew is present and they don't interfere with the pew when it is (provided it doesn't happen on the timer Big smile).
    Alticus C Bear
    University of Caille
    Gallente Federation
    #10 - 2012-05-11 09:10:20 UTC
    You could combine military NPC’s Amarr/Caldari and Gallente/ Minmatar joint fleets, this increases the number of damage types and weapon types a player faces and sits better for omni tanking.

    Smaller smarter spawns. Damage output balanced for Omni tanks.

    Link NPC strength to the system upgrade level; say NPC’s start at reduced Damage/ EHP to current level with incrementing stats at each level, Introduce NPC E-war at say level 3. This way as a system loses its system upgrades the plexes become easier and the offensive should gain momentum.

    Change how tags work, it’s bad enough I have to orbit a timer but I also have to go round and pick up tags from each NPC just to get them for the LP Store.

    Have them engage neutrals as if they are the enemy.

    Spread aggro, target new ships so the first ship cannot just tank the spawn.
    Fidelium Mortis
    Minor Major Miners LLC
    #11 - 2012-05-11 17:57:46 UTC
    Concerning Navy Ships in High Sec:

    If locked docking mechanic is implemented, I would suggest reducing the effectiveness of the high-sec NPC navies, in particular their web/neuting abilities. It also depends on how “safe” high-sec should feel for players that sign up for FW. For instance should it be a viable tactic for someone to retreat into high sec to shake off a few pursuers in smaller ship hulls (and in general PvP fitted ships). Currently this is a pretty significant deterrent for further pursuit, and creates some annoying gate games (rather than stuff blowing up).

    I would propose fewer, but smarter spawns that would respawn on a timer, and will escalate in difficulty the longer the spawns keep getting wiped out. The difficulty of the initial spawn should be dependent on the security level of the system, or on the proximity of the system to a militia station.

    ICRS - Intergalactic Certified Rocket Surgeon

    Gevlin
    Sebiestor Tribe
    Minmatar Republic
    #12 - 2012-05-12 03:32:55 UTC
    oh please please...
    this would keep me in low sec for ever....
    it allows PC to lead NPC followers.
    Allows a solo Player to play against many if he know how to stratigically use the NPCs. I can Solo in a logitics ship. I can actually play on the Side of the NPCs - A first!

    This should encourage timid new PVP players, I would expect to see some new players in Low sec... The NPCs should open a faction chat channel for those in system so they can report targets, broadcast for reps, report if someone is tackled. so the player being apart of the NPC fleet can feel apart of the fleet. Or report they have a tackle in another complex.

    This would add a whole new play style in eve. a Unique play style ... is it ready on SISi yet. I want to test this out.. I need to test this out to make an informed decision. Other wise half of my self is battling the fear of the unknown.

    Please this is a CRAZY idea and needs some play testing... there are just too many variable to just sit back and say Meh or YEH!!

    I know this is work, but please allow us to test it before allowing this idea to be shot down.

    Thanks


    Someday I will have the time to play. For now it is mining afk in High sec. In Cheap ships

    Gevlin
    Sebiestor Tribe
    Minmatar Republic
    #13 - 2012-05-12 03:43:14 UTC
    for high sec I would recommend leaving the Crew Week and dumb as they will become complacent because Concord does all the work, In low sec, the cream of the crop is used because they can't rely on Concord to help you out.

    Would be interesting to have Faction police roam in their space controlled territory. If you want protection.. You you have to join a Faction!

    This would make a nice transition for High sec to Null sec.
    forcing people to choose. Fly with limited protection, but be targets to a couple of factions.
    Pirates can attack people in their home faction low sec systems, Don't get a sec hit. But will get pounced by NPC Faction after 20-60 seconds dependings on the sec status. These NPC would be Defeatable by same number PCs players. or avoided if the Pirates are quick.

    This would Encourage Carebearing in low sec and pirates in a fast fleet or cheap fleet can earn a life from salvage and running from the police.

    Someday I will have the time to play. For now it is mining afk in High sec. In Cheap ships

    X Gallentius
    Black Eagle5
    Villore Accords
    #14 - 2012-05-12 04:26:06 UTC  |  Edited by: X Gallentius
    CCP Ytterbium wrote:


    • Upgrade their AI with target switching mechanics - just like Sleepers and Incursion Sanshas
    • Revamp their attributes to be more on par with PvP fits, while still allowing new pilots to compete (FW barrier of entry is supposed to be low)
    • Cut their respawn numbers - they should be used as an activity if there is no PvP going around, but not impair PvP when it is happening
    • Possibly use them to assist a losing faction; for example, have tougher NPCs than usual spawn for a faction with less solar systems, or attack opposing members at gates (not neutrals)


    These sound like good ideas. Not so sure about the last one, but I don't think it will matter too much one way or the other.

    Quote:

    Another point where your feedback would be most appreciated is regarding your own experience facing them as they are right now:


    • What do you think about Navy NPCs when you go to enemy high-security space? What would you do about that?
    • What about the standing mechanic that govern NPC attack behavior? When do you feel they should engage you? Low standings? Capturing a complex?


    If a WT enters a plex, the NPCs should shoot him no matter what standings he has. If a fellow militia member enters a plex, he should never be shot at - no matter what his faction standing is (unless he shoots first). Otherwise, set the standings for neutrals at whatever people think is important.

    I wish plexes were capped based on when the last NPC dies (for the attacker). Nothing is more boring than sitting in a plex when nobody wants to fight you. Edit: For this reason plex timers should reset to the minimum of (baseline time, current time) to capture plex if it changes hands. Nobody likes orbiting a button against no competition for 29 minutes.

    w.r.t balance. There's two things:
    1. Damage
    2. E-war

    Both ought to be thought through. Hopefully making NPCs more pvp like, this issue will go away.
    X Gallentius
    Black Eagle5
    Villore Accords
    #15 - 2012-05-12 13:23:08 UTC
    Kurai Okala wrote:


    Mixing NPCs with PVP has always seemed like a bad idea to me but I don't want to see FW NPCs removed all together either so I like this idea.

    Also, another +1 to reducing NPC numbers but improving their AI to make them mimic PVP. I don't think FW players should have to gimp their PVP effectiveness to effeciently deal with enemy NPCs (get those PVE fits out of a PVP feature)

    I disagree. Having NPCs in fights can give a numerically inferior group of players a chance at defeating a better squad on paper. These are actually pretty fun fights and offer some variety in engagements. Their effect on the plex fights, however, should simulate normal pvp as much as practicable. For example, fighting against large numbers of ewar is not realistic nor fun.
    Liner Xiandra
    Sparks Inc
    #16 - 2012-05-12 13:24:07 UTC  |  Edited by: Liner Xiandra
    Maybe this is more a thing for the user interface guys and girls, but why are friendly NPC's in FW complexes shown as reds on the overview?

    If the NPC's are on your side, either make them militia coloured on the overview; or neutral even.
    X Gallentius
    Black Eagle5
    Villore Accords
    #17 - 2012-05-12 13:29:16 UTC
    delete
    RavenTesio
    Liandri Corporation
    #18 - 2012-05-13 19:56:13 UTC
    This isn't so much NPC based but would first say I think that Tags are just an irritating aspect of PvE, they should be replaced with a Bounty... only rather than ISK you are earning Commendations.

    Ship Size = Commendation Type
    Ship Cost = Commendation Amount

    You would earn these for both NPCs and Players. Remove the LP from Player Kills.
    Honestly this just make far more sense overall... right now Tags are considered "Very Rare Items" so if you die, they instantly disappear rather than drop, they are also a HUGE pain in the ass to bother picking up because you earn such low quantities you have to grind for the damn things.

    As it stands Faction Gear for the most part is just ridiculously over-priced. We should see far more of it on the market, and not be afraid to use all but the most basic and cheap hardware because that 1 Caldari Navy Invulnerability Field cost more than the entire ship we're flying on a Kill Report.

    To me instead of increasing out ability to have larger wallets, just let us earn the equippment we need to get back in to a fight more cheaply. After all most of us care more about doing PvP than simply watching our wallets explode, this would also take care of those who join Faction Warfare simply to Mission Run or such; because they'll find what they were making a mint on suddenly has reduced to only being slightly better price-wise than Tech 2 hardware.

    Loyalty from Complexes and Commendations from Combat to me provides the perfect blend in earning potencial that could be quickly turned around to deadly ships rather than having to do a trade hub run each time we need more hardware.

    Also increase what we can buy via the LP Store. At the very least have them offer Tech 1 ships at baseline prices for us as opposed to what Goonswarm are forcing the market towards, little point in being rich if the market inflation is out-pacing our earning potencial.

    As it stands the NPCs in a complex will stack, and stack, and stack. With a single Spawn being relatively easy to deal with solo, yet if someone forces a full spawn (or fails) blam next time you enter you have to deal with a full set of spawns. To me this makes complexes somewhere between a yawnfest and "**** I wish I'd brought friends"

    Not to mention simply speed tanking a room is just far too easy, even with the changes on SiSi; I can still grab a throwaway rifter and solo them to my hearts content.

    Instead what would make more sense is the idea of a Roaming NPC Fleet. The basic concept here is you have a Fleet in system, with let's say 50 NPC Pilots; they would be split in to 5x 10-man Squads... their job would be to patrol a system for that given Militia.

    These squads could be split in to their intended patrol areas.
    Commander (Carrier + Battleships) would Patrol the I-HUB, Major Unrestricted (Patrols Gates), Major (Patrols Stations), Medium (Patrols Planets), Minor (Patrols Belts)

    When you enter the system, they wouldn't deviate from their Patrol Routes; but if they see you they would engage relying information to the other patrolling squads. You would be able to remain hidden in a Safe-Spot or Cosmic Anomaly.

    Activating a Complex, wouldn't have NPCs inside but instead this would alert the NPCs in system with a given Squad Responding... they would enter via the same way we do (acceleration gate), with their objective to defend the Control Point.
    Just as if a Player was there, when they are within range of the Control Point it would stop the timer; meaning you have to dispatch of them as quickly as possible to keep it going.

    When they die instead of being well dead, they would return to the I-HUB and Reship from the Carrier. Meaning there would be a little downtime before they attack again, but they would keep coming back even once the site has been taken.

    If however Friendly Militia enter the Complex, they would no longer return and either go to another complex that needs their attention or return to patrol duty.

    In this way you will only EVER have a single wave of enemy to deal with that would continue to Harass you until the I-HUB becomes vunerable AND you have taken down their Carrier. If the I-HUB is still invunerable, it will respawn another Carrier (followed by the rest of the ships) after 5minutes.

    Again if there are Friendly Militia on the Field, the NPCs will disengage (if they can) to return to a Safe Spot (perhaps the Sun) in the System.

    The idea here is to have the PvE combat feel more like PvP Combat, with the honestly ridiculously boring aspect of Bunker Busting, which very rarely results in a fight between two sides have something interesting to also deal with. To me fighting over a system should be a very tough fight, against either NPCs or Players that requires us to work together rather than just run around as a solo player all day.

    Only reason you see fleets for Bunker Busts come from the fact that they have a stupid amount of hitpoints like POSs, not because we couldn't do it alone just that it'd take all dang day.

    I also think that the Complex sites themselves should make a bit more sense. As it stands we have to sit inside an imaginary circle until a timer says we're good... which honestly doesn't make any sense. "Oh no, the enemy has sat outside my Window for 10 minutes... well guess we should defect now!" - just ridiculous.

    Instead what would make more sense (atleast to me) is if these Complex sites actually were tied to the Invunerability of the Infrastructer Hub. The sites themselves would also be protected by shield units and a small contingent of low-yield turrets designed to deter curious pilots.
    [continued in post 2]
    RavenTesio
    Liandri Corporation
    #19 - 2012-05-13 19:56:26 UTC
    As such would propose there be 2 new Modules and a 'new' Structure. These would be available via the LP Store.
    Module 1 • Military Assault Module • [High Slot] This device would be loaded with an DAS (Dust Assault Ship) and provide a Triage / Seige-style Mode; where the ship that launches the DAS is locked in to position until the Assault Ship returns, with their resists raised 25% (up to a max of 95%) for the duration.

    As DUST obviously isn't out yet, for the moment this would be a simple timer (say 5 minutes) but it would make a good Assault & Defend Game Mode in DUST... where their success would have a direct impact on our ability to capture a site, just as our success at defending the ship that launches it would on them being able to come back alive.

    Module 2 • Military IFF • [Mid-Slot] Complex gates would automatically allow friendly militia in, those who are not however would be locked out. Using the device would scramble the Friend-or-Foe check for 5 minutes to allow those from your Faction, Corporation or Alliance in to the Complex. Those in a militia the device works instantly, but those outside of militia it would work similar to how the Salvager or Decrypter works... this wouldn't stop Pirates or such from entering but it would mean they will be vunerable on the gate for much longer until it works.

    Structure • Remote Shield Emitter • These are devices inside the complex, where you would have +1 per Level of Complex. As such Minor = 1, Medium = 2, Major = 3, Major Unrestricted = 4. In order to make the Control Center vunerable to attack you must offline these shields... basically, blow them the hell up. Once you have completed gaining control of the site however it will be your responsibility to anchor and calibrate new RSEs to make sure your Control Center is protected.

    The Emitters themselves will anchor immediately, but a friendly militia ship is used to calibrate them; so they must stay within 10km until they have finished calibration. These should take between 1-2 minute(s) to Calibrate.

    ---

    To me this makes a more interesting Complex system, but what would make it better is if the Complexes weren't randomly spawning deadspace, but were more like randomly placed but always there. You would still need to scan them down, but instead each site would be worth a set number of points depending on the site size. With the System Upgrade determining the number of points you could have active in a system...

    For example:
    Upgrade Level 0 = 25 Points (Minor = 1 Point) and so when you capture the system 25 Minor Sites are spawned in that system.
    Upgrade Level 1 = 75 Points ... each time you upgrade you get an additional 25 Minor Site, but you have a further 25 Points to spend on spawning either more Minor Sites; or Upgrading the sites you have to Mediums, Major or Major Unrestricted.

    This is done by simply entering the site, anchoring a new Emitter and Activating it. Each emitter anchored increases that site to the next level and adding a point to how much it is worth.

    Now why do this? Simple, to change how the systems are won overall.
    The idea is that there will be a running total of points, let's say for example we are fighting over Nisuwa (Caldari-Gallente) and they have only chosen to upgrade it to Level 1 (75 points)

    In order for that system to become vunerable, the Caldari would need to take +50% of the Points available in the system.
    e.g. 38 Points, which would be the quickest means ... but for the Gallente to stop us, they would only need to take a single Minor Complex back.

    Still we go further with this and say for some reason the Gallente don't respond to this attack, we take the I-HUB dealing with the NPC fleet, blam! now it is Caldari owned. The thing is there are still 37 Points that the Gallente own, meaning they can immediately make the I-HUB vunerable again... while we could take the remaining Gallente Points, we would not earn any LP for this as they would now be defensive.

    This would allow for systems to still have a very quick turn-over within a single timezone, but this is at the risk of having it very quickly be turned back. The system will then enter a 24hr Warzone period, during this time it is up to either the side who just lost the system to take it back (retaining the upgrade level) or for the defending side to donate the LP to upgrade it to maintain it.
    Would also point out that during a Warzone period, no one owns the system. This gives the defending side the chance to move all of their docked ships out of system, or retake it.

    After this time the Complexes are reset to the basic 25 Minors. With the Docking Rights to Enemies of the Controlling Faction Rescinded... would echo this should not just be Wartargets, but anyone who had bad standings with the Faction inversely equivilant to the system security rating.

    i.e. Nisuwa 0.3 (-7.0 with Caldari State or lower = No Dock) - Diplomacy should not be factored in, as this should only count for High-Sec. These are Warzones, with much more strict rules enforce by Military Personel not Diplomats and Police.
    Esna Pitoojee
    Societas Imperialis Sceptri Coronaeque
    Khimi Harar
    #20 - 2012-05-13 23:34:36 UTC
    Regarding NPC EWAR:

    While I cannot speak for the Caldari/Gallente front, this has been a major issue on the Amarr/Minmatar front; the classic example given for this is that while an ABing Vigil can solo an Amarr Major (let alone Medium) plex, at least two frigates or other small ship are required to run a Minmatar medium or Major plex - one to kite the NPCs and one to count the timer down. Moreover, if ANY of the subsequent spawns aggro on the button-counter, they will have to leave the plex and re-enter. Of course, an Amarr player could use a more appropriately sized ship for the plex size, but this puts them at a significant disadvantage - especially for newer players - compared to the Minmatar pilot who can take his ABing vigil almost anywhere and easily run if someone decides to come chasing them.

    Looking over the database of NPCs at Games.chruker.dk, however, I noticed something else:

    For Minmatar FW NPCs, 19 have various EWAR abilitiies (this includes web, scram, energy neuting, TPing, etc...). Amarr have 24 seperate NPCs with assorted EWAR abilities.

    Here's the breakdown:
    Webbing: A:4 / M: 6 - unsurprising; webbing is the secondary Minmatar racial EWAR type.
    Warp Scrambling: A:4 / M:4 - a nice balance here
    Primary racial EWAR type (TP/TD/etc): A:15 / M:12 - here's a surprise, Amarr actually have more NPCs doing their main EWAR
    Energy Vampire: A:12 / M:2 - another surprise; Amarr have a much greater disparity among the number of ships using their secondary EWAR type than for the Minmatar secondary EWAR (webbing).

    Considering the above, why is it that Amarr NPCs are by nearly everyone I've encountered generally agreed to be the easier NPCs to fight?

    I would argue it's a combination of three things:
    First, the Amarr EWAR types are highly dependent on range - that is, it is possibly to mitigate or entirely remove their effects by pulling range. Minmatar EWAR, on the other hand, can follow you out to extreme ranges.

    Second, while Amarr EWAR is "defensive" - that is, it only limits your ability to engage the NPCs - Minmatar EWAR is "offensive", assisting the NPCs in their firing on you. Finally, there's that oft-cited disparity in missile use between Amarr and Minmatar NPCs, which becomes particularly pertinent when you consider the second point.

    Finally, there is an extreme disparity in how far or how effectively the EWAR is utilized. For example, an Amarr NPC battleship has a 25% chance to neut you out to 10km, while a Minmatar battleship has a 75% chance to neut at up to 30km. Keepin in mind that energy neutralization is an Amarr EWAR type! The same is true for primary (racial-specific) EWAR types; one of the Minmatar basic cruisers, for example, is 100% more likely to engage its EWAR out to 10km farther than its Amarr counterpart.

    Overall, therefor, Minmatar NPCs are far more likely to use their EWAR and will effect you regardless of what you are doing, compared to Amarr NPCs.



    As a final note, as has been mentioned, the issue of disparity in missile use is a serious issue in the difficulty issues between Amarr and Minmatar NPCs, particularly in light of the above points about EWAR.
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