Monday, April 21, 2014

Think Positive

I had an idea for a blog post today, but I tossed it into the recycle bin.  Why go negative?  I've seen Ripard Teg go demagogic over Erotica 1 and then use the curious choice of the term "traitor" in his latest post on industry.  Lately, I feel like I'm watching a slow-motion train wreck when I read his blog.  Hopefully his forays into other games will keep him from going totally over the edge.

Then again, if every blogger must take a dip into the dark side, I'm already fully immersed.  I've written about botting and illicit real money trading (RMT) for years now.  I've found the wretched hives of scum and villainy to write about so I can afford to take a more positive view of other aspects of the world.  Not to say I don't go negative when I write about other subjects, but I try to keep that impulse under control.

So what brings on this post?  Fanfest is next week.  Last year I heard some of the changes and didn't take them too well.  I turned some of that negativity into a 10-week experiment to determine if the changes to low sec really were a nerf.  This year I plan on getting a head start.  I'm going to think outside the box and try to puzzle out what CCP plans on accomplishing with their changes.

I think I already know somewhat where CCP plans on going, at least in a general sense.  CCP Seagull already told us last year about a dream of building a star gate to unexplored lands.  I imagine that land will have its own rules, so we know have three types of space: k-space (known), w-space (wormhole), and now s-space (Seagull).  Does New Eden even have sea gulls?  We need to get some official lore made if not.

I'll just leave one example of where my mind is going, since I think I ate too much chocolate yesterday, and I really shouldn't eat chocolate.  Are Redeemers about to become the new Avatar?

I think looking at EVE as a puzzle box and trying to explore the mysteries will leave me with a more positive mental outlook than concentrating on the negatives that affect me in the short term.  Because I do see nerfs in my future.  But hey, when you play in the sandbox, some kids get jealous.  Since all the cool kids play in low sec, some jealously is bound to splash our way occasionally.  We just need to deal with it.


  1. the term "traitor" is a reference to himself. He's making a joke. As in, those of you in hisec/losec who are complaining, I "betrayed" you by not fighting these changes and here's why.

    1. Fascinating. I never thought of Ripard as a rep focused on my area of play.

    2. Yeah. In accusing jester of going over some edge or other, without explanation, the OP seems...overly excitable? Confused?

    3. @Anonymous - Too old and has seen this happen before?

  2. Well, there has been an election campaign going on. Should I have reminded you about that?

    Provocative posts have given the candidates an opportunity to show their metal, or not. Their vision, or not. Their willingness to hog Eve, or not.

    You are right though, the time has come to ratchet down the rhetoric once again.

    1. But Ripard isn't running, and I don't see other candidates latching onto his rhetoric.

    2. I found Ripard's "traitor" post to be normal for him. The E1 episode was the exception, and it represented him playing with fire. However, his approach has been different (back to normal?) for the industry posts; he admitted that he is accepting a null-sec-heavy rebalance, and he recognizes that it will anger people. My comprehension of his tone might be off, though.

    3. @Stavblest - Or I could have taken the language as something it wasn't. I was suffering a chocolate hangover when I wrote this.

  3. Ripard merely made official what was already evident: The changes are designed to make industry outside of sov nullsec on any scale non-viable.

    1. Large scale industry will happen in null. Small scale in hisec is going to be more competitive but fine as far as I can see (so far). The removal of standings and the anchoring sec status requirements are the sop to allow new players to experiment without feeling they need to go straight to null but it will also allow small scale t2 industrialists to compete.

      Trade will still happen in Jita. If null sec manages to sell everything it produces locally I'll be surprised. Trade will still happen. Between null blocs in a neutral location and to the high sec missioners. If some null bloc manages to become self sufficient via boosted industry then, well, they're fine disappearing up their own arse, jump freighter cyno systems will be camped to hell anyway.

      Low sec quiet slots will provide a tempting competitive advantage for the older hisec industrialists.

      I read that Ripard is too divorced from what it's like to be a new younger player. They'll be fine.

      PS. These are thoughts so far. Waiting for the rest of the dev blogs!

    2. Huh? I did no such thing. I said that high-sec industry will be every bit as viable as any other means of making income in high-sec.

    3. @Jester - You did? I just reread "Traitor" twice and couldn't find that. What you did write was this:

      "And in the midst of this, the people who are making their living doing the bulk of their manufacturing in high-sec -- and I include myself among this number -- are going to be the most trodden on: we'll be paying the most for minerals, we'll almost certainly be paying the most for manufacturing. That is going to make our margins on a lot of products razor thin... where we're able to sell these items for a profit at all. I suspect there are some items for which manufacturing in high-sec at a profit is about to become impossible!"

      Also, please don't feed the trolls. With this comment, people could easily interpret your words to mean that high sec missions are about to get nerfed also. When I'm in Iceland, I don't want to hear a lot of complaining in the bars before the convention starts. I want to talk about happy things.

      If you were just a blogger, I'd let this comment slide. But since you are a member of CSM with inside information, you might want to choose your words more carefully.

    4. "Huh? I did no such thing. I said that high-sec industry will be every bit as viable as any other means of making income in high-sec."

      If that's what you meant to say, you've managed to confuse just about every reader I've run across.

    5. I have to agree with Noizy and Ranamar, Ripard. A lot of people in your thread are focused on the idea of being "forced into null" because you left that impression rather clearly in your post.

      If that's not what you meant to say, good, because I don't think it's accurate. But I can't blame anyone who came away from your blog with that impression.

    6. I'm another Jester regular reader who caught more than a wiff of that impression....

    7. What am I missing with the changes announced thus far? Why does anyone feel this is super bad for hisec and super good for null?

      First, manufacturing taxes will apply there as well. If nullsec industrialists choose to congregate together and build out of the same station(s), taxes will go up. Manufacturing taxes in null versus hisec are not what is going to make nullsec producers somehow competitive with hisec producers. Unless you are a terribad hisec producer than only wants to build in places like Perimeter or Maurasi. At that point, you are electing to build in an area with higher taxes that will cut into your margin.

      Second, nullsec industrialists are still at the mercy of being able to acquire the construction minerals to build anything. Even if more miners come to nullsec, the volume of minerals required to build stuff from Titans to Rifters will still be limited. And some of those things take a metric fuckton of minerals. Believe me, we will still be looking at importing mass quantities of minerals, although instead of doing so through module mineral compression, we will want ore or compressed ore. Null will be more dependent on hisec miners than before because we will need ore, preferably compressed, not just raw mins.

      Third, the combination of these two things is not somehow going to make nullsec producers super competitive with hisec producers. We won't be building Ravens to sell in hisec. We may build some ships to sell to the local nullsec market, reducing some dependence on manufactured items from hisec. But hisec will still be able to outprice nullsec when all costs are taken into account. Have you seen the price for some jump fuels? The price of logistics needs to be factored in to manufacturing costs as well.

      The new manufacturing tax will only force hisec producers to make a choice: pick a manufacturing facility closer to market and potentially pay a higher tax, thus hurting profit margin and competitive advantage. Or, pick a manufacturing facility farther away that is less utilized, and thus has a lower tax rate, but spend some extra time and effort moving your goods to market. These aren't bad choices. It will allow manufacturers to further differentiate themselves by price.

      Overall, I'm seeing a lot being made about not much. Of course, I could be missing something. It wouldn't be the first time.

    8. "What am I missing with the changes announced thus far? Why does anyone feel this is super bad for hisec and super good for null?
      Overall, I'm seeing a lot being made about not much. Of course, I could be missing something. It wouldn't be the first time."

      Nope, I'm seeing pretty much the same thing you're seeing, right down to the analysis I elided. If this so much as makes it worth manufacturing day-to-day stuff locally for nullsec consumption, it will be a huge improvement.

  4. A lot of people are forgetting about logistics. Null sec will have some advantages after this expansion, but it will still have the disadvantage of more expensive and riskier logistics. The most logical effect that the changes to industry will have on high sec is that it will:

    1) eliminate the "manufacturing" of 425mm Railguns, which is just ore compression, but which will also relieve pressure on slots near Jita;

    2) move that manufacturing for null sec consumption which can be done in or close to the delivery station from Jita out to null sec, which will also relieve pressure on slots near Jita;

    3) potentially spread the remaining industry out farther away from Jita and the other major hubs.

    I think it will run into the mall/Wal-Mart problem presented by Jita, which is that if you can buy everything you need in one place at a reasonable price, why wouldn't you? I think Jita (and to a lesser extent, Amarr) is stickier than either the champions or the doomsayers of this change believe, and fiddling with only one of the variables that make Jita the place to be might have some chance of breaking its monopoly, but unless the nullsec powers make a deliberate and concerted effort to yank their manufacturing divisions into nullsec, it probably won't. A lot depends on what the other changes are, of course.

    Time will tell.

  5. Overall, my attitude towards the indy changes has been very much a wait and see what happens. This is EvE Online, and a certain amount of adaptation should have been built (hammered) into players DNA by now I would have hoped.

    In any case, the POS changes could mitigate a lot of the pain, or potentially even benefit the smaller/medium sized producer. Much depends on the efficiency gains in the as yet unreleased numbers. Much will depend of people being prepared to migrate to quieter systems with construction lines.

    The one comment from Jester that I had some pretty big misgivings about was the 5% of high sec being industrialists. That seems awfully low and has an element of dismissal about it. The problem isn't really a problem because it only affects 5% of people?

    Industry drives the New Eden economy. There are going to be some interesting bumps when this hits, and I'm not sure even the best of prognostications are going to foresee all of the fallout from it.

    Even if the number is 5%, they could very well be building 50% of all items in New Eden. I have no idea if this is the case or not (does anyone?), but if half of those people decide this is no longer the game for them.... the bumps might just be a damn sight bigger than anyone expects.

  6. One thing that has been very unclear to me is the "0-14% tax" and how it applies to POS... specifically if it's a system wide effect, or an "installation" wide effect.

    Suppose you have a system with one station, a small POS and a large POS. The one station is fairly busy, and the tax is 8%. What I'm hoping is right is as follow: The small POS is being run red-hot by its owner, and the "tax" is 12%. Meanwhile the large POS is being used mostly as a mineral refining and compression setup, and its industrial capacity is barely used, resulting in a "tax" of 1%. In other words, the usage at the installation is what matters, not the system.

    However, what some people seem to be thinking is that since the station is being fairly heavily, the tax would be 8% system wide... which would suck for POS owners who are being moderate in their industrial activities.

    We really need more details on how POS industry will work before we can judge...

    1. Yup. The trickle teasers are not helping.

    2. Might be something to bring up via the CSM. Stop trolling the player base!

    3. I'll also note that a system wide effect could be gamed...