Tuesday, July 2, 2019

Null Sec And The Drifter Menace: What's Old Is New Again

Watching and listening to the antics of null sec in general, and The Mittani and Aryth in particular, over the past week in reaction to the Drifter Menace takes me back to November 2011. Back then, someone on the old Kugutsumen formus trolled HurrDurrHurr into thinking he had been permanently banned from EVE. The solution? Attack Chribba!
Oh the humanity...I
f you haven't already heard the great terrible news, Durr has been permanently banned from Eve Online by some dick eating a rotten shark sandwich. No one really knows what the exact justification for the ban is, but apparently it has something to do with Durr getting a bunch of SomethingAwful guys to mass petition CCP regarding some GM adding anti-scam rules to the Recruitment channel. There is nothing in the rule book that specifically states that is wrong, and certainly nothing that would indicate that it is a instant perma ban offense.

At this time we ask that you not mass petition CCP while the CSM/higher level GM's get to the bottom of this mess.

Striking back
Instead, we will fight back the only way we know how, by shitting on the Empire pubbies that this anti-scam rule protects, and we'll do it in nullsec. You may be asking yourself, "How will we get a bunch of Empire pubbies to tear themselves away from the teat of Level 4 missions!?!?" and the answer is that we are attacking their Mecca and Muhammad all in one shot. We will be attacking 9UY4-H, home of Otherworld Enterprises, Chribba's alliance. If you've been wanting to see a bunch of empire pubbies frothing at the mouth even more than they have been, now is probably a good time to login. In the eyes of the average empire dweller we are now literally Hitler.

We will begin deploying to Providence in a few short days along with our allies Elite Space Guild aka Broski aka Shurk aka fuck it you know who. Some other friends of ours will also be making an appearance, but that will be revealed later.

Primary: Get at least 500 Empire dwellers in 9UY4-H at the same time
Secondary: Actually take 9UY4-H
Tertiary: Roam all of Providence and have fun with CVA, also fucking around in Catch

What to do now
Start posting on Eve-O about how we are going to shit all over Chribba.
Get excited, as Montolio will be FCing some wulfpax and RPing as a Nazi u-boat commander.

Get your Alphafleet and Welpfleet ships bought and fitted up in 6VDT and await for further orders, it won't be long.
As it turned out, TEST wasn't powerful enough to do the job (to be fair, Chibba did have a bigger supercap fleet at the time), so they called in Pandemic Legion and Shadoo to take the sov and station away from Chribba. Shortly afterwards, the Honey Badger Coalition led by TEST and Pandemic Legion formed.

Fast forward 7 1/2 years and we have another situation where a major null sec alliance is highly annoyed with CCP. Times 7. Turns out that null sec players hate non-consensual PvE as much as many high sec residents hate non-consensual PvP. The Imperium made an early withdrawal from the north to secure their assets in Delve.
PACK YOUR SHIT AND PREPARE TO WITHDRAW TO DELVE: This is stupid as hell but upon further discussion we will take CCP at their word and not assume this nonsense is a bug. As you guys know we were planning on fucking off soon after SH1 (as per the Init SOTA which leaked), but I’d hoped to mess around in Malpais a bit before we went home… but whatever. It’s a good thing we burned the candle at both ends and nuked SH1 before this shit happened, but if ~generic pve bad guy vigilant tyrannos~ wants to clean up the drones for us, hey. At least the Drifters undock.
The Mittani sounded like he wanted to continue, but succumbed to necessity:
let’s take ccp at their word for now and that this is an invasion feature
bad news: we must go home (but we were planning on that anyway as sh1 is done)
good news: this will absolutely ruin 50%+ of the structures in null, but especially those of our enemies who can’t defend and have had their willpower drained by our attacks
i wanted to purge malpais but if mr tyrannos will do the work for us, fuck it

~~~ This was a broadcast from the_mittani to all at 2019-06-26 23:59:01.764064 EVE ~~~

Now, either intentionally or due to poor design and/or coding. the Drifters never seem to follow-up on the armor timers the NPCs create. We also know the Drifters are not attacking the null sec structures with their most powerful units. Still, trying to fight an enemy who doesn't tire or get bored, can't be talked with or otherwise metagamed, and seems to pick targets without rhyme or reason isn't why null sec players subscribe (or PLEX accounts) to play EVE. Did I mention the Drifters attacking the structures don't show up on D-scan, are unprobeable, and have reportedly fired on targets over 500 km away?

On Saturday, during the Goons' fireside chat (Soundcloud here), Aryth laid out a plan. From INN's coverage of the event:
"Aryth, Goonswarm’s head financier and member of CSMs 11, 12, 13, and 14, explained that the current situation means that as the nullsec groups are unable to carry out their usual fleets, or deploy against each other, they will instead extract content from high sec. As he explained, “Shared trenches make for very good friends“. The ongoing invasions in nullsec have forced the null blocs to put aside their differences for now, and unite under a common cause.

"The major power blocs will be forming a cartel to enact an embargo of raw materials into High Security space. Put simply, the NullSec power blocs will not be sending their jump freighters into Jita with the high end minerals and moongoo used by much of highsec production.

"Although the regions in NullSec are not self-sufficient in terms of moongoo, the blocs can trade between each other directly, instead of coming into Jita to stock up."
During the session, The Mittani also gave the go-ahead for individual members to wage economic war on high sec as well. The only area off-limits is the PLEX market, as any market manipulation is liable to hit Imperium members just as hard as high sec.

On The Meta Show, The Mittani also implied that the economic warfare would also have a military component. And why not? History has shown tactics such as the Gallente Ice Interdiction of 2012 work. As The Mittani wrote back in 2012 in his Ten Ton Hammer column:
"At the start of the month, the Goonswarm Federation finance team realized that they might be able to destroy the galactic economy. Bored of a stagnant nullsec and aroused by the potential for grief, they announced that they had found New Eden’s industrial Achilles Heel: the 15 Ice Belts in Gallente hisec that produce Oxygen Isotopes, the critical POS-fuel that runs most T2 reaction towers. Placing bounties on the heads of anyone attempting to mine ice in those fifteen key systems, hundreds of Goons and their allies began roaming the tranquil, Concord-coddled spacelanes around Dodixie and turning them into an abbatoir, suicide-ganking anything that would sit still long enough to drop a Brutix on it..."

"The Ice Interdiction turned out to be the precursor to a series of anti-hisec market interventions by Goonswarm, most notably Burn Jita and the Permanent Hulkageddon. It was the test case to answer the question: could a nullsec bloc, despite a numerical disadvantage, overwhelm the disorganized masses of hisec and sow galactic chaos through the markets? The answer was a resounding ‘yes’ as oxytopes tripled in price, ruining reaction chains across the game and forcing thousands of players to tear down their Gallente towers and replace them with Caldari, wasting uncounted man-hours staring at the Floating Green Box."
So that's where we are today as we wait to see what the one hour downtime brings to New Eden. A lot of people are acting like the null sec reaction to the Drifter Menace is something new. The only thing I see new is the potential scale of the action. The ideas behind them? Not so much.

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