Thursday, September 25, 2014

I Need A New Type Of Post

The issue of the legality of the use of ISBoxer in EVE Online is one of those running sores that creates conflict among EVE players.  CCP's position on the software doesn't help any.
"We do not endorse or condone the use of any third party applications or other software that modifies the client or otherwise confers an unfair benefit to players. We may, in our discretion, tolerate the use of applications or other software that simply enhance player enjoyment in a way that maintains fair gameplay. For instance, the use of programs that provide in-game overlays (Mumble, Teamspeak) and the multiboxing application is not something we plan to actively police at this time. However, if any third party application or other software is used to gain any unfair advantage, or for purposes beyond its intended use, or if the application or other software violates other parts of the EULA, we may fully enforce our rights to prohibit such use, including player bans. Please use such third party applications or other software at your own risk." [emphasis mine]
CCP also has a clear statement about botting software, "This is NOT allowed under any circumstances."  So clearly, CCP does not consider ISBoxer botting software.  Neither do I.  But I continue to hear ISBoxer referred to as botting software from voices as diverse as EVE Radio's DJ Big Country to one of the dean's of EVE blogging, Kirith Kodachi.

Regular readers know I'm weary of reading the same, tired arguments that CCP has already rejected.  Instead of reading how ISBoxer is botting, I'd like to hear the answers to questions about how ISBoxer has the same effects on EVE as botting.

I'm beginning to think I need to come up with a different type of post.  One with just answers to questions I see popping up.  That way, if the subject comes up on Twitter, I can just copy and paste the link into a tweet and just answer questions that way.  Maybe even come up with a catchy name for a tag.  But I was writing about the ISBoxer issue 18 months ago and the uproar in the community then led to the language in the Third Pary Policies page that exists today.  Considering that CCP just fixed an ISBoxer-specific bug in the EVE client, I don't foresee any changes in the policy.  And as I've already stated, I'm pretty tired of the subject.

UPDATE: CCP Masterplan has stated that the bug was not ISBoxer specific.


  1. The Fact that it gives someone an "in-human" advantage is the biggest issue ... and that clearly violates the EULA--

    CONDUCT 3 -A : You may not use your own or any third-party software, macros or other stored rapid keystrokes or other patterns of play that facilitate acquisition of items, currency, objects, character attributes, rank or status at an accelerated rate when compared with ordinary Game play.

  2. As Bigcountry says, ISBoxer gives advantages no group of individual humans can match.

    Try running against a 12 Nightmare ISBoxed fleet in a VG, then try it against 12 human run Nightmares. I have. My crew can compete, and win better than 50% of the time against the humans. Against the perfect alpha and focused fire of an IsBoxed chance.

    That being said, my crew did beat a ISBoxed 12 Legion fleet on the weekend, but that was due to the lousy ship choice of the Boxer.

  3. Now the important question. Does the ISBoxer's ability to do this keep content away from you or keeping you from completing content? If so, then it is having the same type of effect on your game play as a bot would in another area of the game or in other games.

  4. When the ISBoxer incursion fleets are contesting sites away from you, does that keep content away from you or keep you from completing content?

    When the ISBoxers are running smaller fleets than you which manage to land perfectly timed salvos, volleying your ships off the field faster than you can volley theirs off the field (because you have to deal with human-induced delays in target calling, targeting, target selection and firing), does that keep content away from you or keep you from completing content?

    When an ISBoxer fleet of mining ships is able to mine out an ice anomaly before most other people can move their ships to an uncontested asteroid, does that keep content away from you or keep you from completing content? There are ISBoxer fleets that I have "contested" ice anomalies with, who have 20-30 skiffs, serviced by an orca, freighter and a fast-locking ship which the exhumers' sentry drones have been assisted to. All of this run by one person.

    Perhaps some people feel that being continually denied victory in PvE or PvP is just a challenge to be overcome, and is thus "content generation". For most people, being continually denied completion in PvE content would be a reason to stop engaging with that content.

  5. Every time this discussion comes up and ISBoxer is not banned I get that little bit closer to buying it myself. Why? Because I feel it gives an (unfair) advantage.
    With ISBoxer I could run more clients with less effort giving me a clear advantage. At minimum it would double or triple my income/hour.
    I don't multibox in nullsec because if I am ratting in null and something appears on Dscan it could be on top of me before I have time to warp out that second or third client. With isboxer all ships can respond at once.

  6. As for gameplay reasons, one of the unexpected ones for me was a solo player controlling a 10 or 12 man stealth bomber gang in null. There is no way a single player could coordinate that kind of activity to such a precise level using other human players or using multiple clients. And because of the precise control, it was very, very effective. if a bomber fleet is not properly controlled, bombs are misaligned, misfired, and cloaking/recloaking/warping is haphazard.

    This doesn't affect my ISK per hour, like other discussions, but is a way of using perfect coordination and control to produce effects that are superior to both those that are generated by an equal group of players and those created by a multi-boxer.

  7. It broadcast single mouse clicks to multiple clients. That is a huge advantage if im mining or bombing. You should have to give the command to each client just like i have to with no isboxer. TBH if it was free software id have less of a problem with it. But as it is it is one of those things it becomes dumb not to use so I just quit.

  8. I just checked and in the Third Party Policies, this clause is listed as one that it will not enforce against ISBoxer users at this time.