5 Years Of Lex Malcanis

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Okay...
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That was terrible, but we learned something.....Malcanis is conceited.
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I got bored of reading this after a paragraph... So I don't actually know who this guy is... but I do know that I don't care what he has to say.
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We didn't know that already...?
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Firefox, when using firebug, http://cdn.tmcdn.org/misc/favi... shows up in your header, which shows the Drupal favicon. However when using chrome i also get the Drupla favicon.. Maybe reset your browser cache to see if you get the drupla favicon now?
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Entitlement? These sites were not for the profit, they were for the PVP they offered. Entitled to fight? You bet your ass I am.
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I originally had the themittani.com logo for the favicon, then it switched to this ugly ass blue-tear-drop-with-aviators which I assume to be the "Drupal" thing.I just reformatted and upgraded to Windows 8, and I still get the tear-drop thing.
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Considering the healthy gobs of money being made by CCP right now, I really don't think their game qualifies as an "insufferable snorefest" for a pretty hefty number of (well-paying) people.
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A wild Guest has appeared!He uses Thesaurus on TrendonSA.It's not very effective.
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https://forums.eveonline.com/d...Where does that suggestion stand according to your law?
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Hats off to experienced players. You found a way to use training DED sites for other purposes. Entitlement isn't always financial. I understand that you had found a way to filter certain ship types into an specific area and you liked it. Unfortunately, EVE space is not meant to be compartmentalized. It was a chance at a safe and fair fight. You're not suppose to be safe while in space. There is no fair in EVE. This convenience was taken from you and you feel entitled to get it back.
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Maybe he foresaw a reply from a butt-hurt forum troll? Just a possibility.... I might ask the guy for Lotto numbers now...
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Who stuck their crank in you bud? Little grumpy aren't we?
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I actually .. do like this post. I cant really can get a conclusion out of it but I like it. really...
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It could be argued that Malcanis' Law should in fact be called a principal, rather than a law, but well, yeah LOL.Might there also exist Malcanis' Second Law? : Whenever a mechanics change is resisted, with claims to preserve the sanctity of the sandbox, it is always to the overwhelming advantage of richer, older players.
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i disagree, even with the conceited part. the article is well written and drives the point home very well.
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Dear Malcanis,It is with heavy heart that I inform you that The New Player Experience does not break "Malcanis' Law." In this case the key term of the law is “mechanics.” The New Player Experience made no changes to game mechanics. The law remains unbroken.It is perhaps worth examining the situation from a different point of view:1) In a competitive environment, a mechanic that advantages one group disadvantages another group by comparison -- *competitive* play is zero sum.2) A mechanics change exclusively benefiting Noobs would therefore have to comparatively harm veterans to genuinely break Malcanis’ Law.3) This would be unwise business strategy for CCP since it favors new, unreliable customers at the expense of old, loyal customers. In addition, it well nigh guarantees that as the newer customers age they’ll grow disenchanted with CCPs product and move on to other things.Perhaps Malcanis’ Law is the result of sound business principles?
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hey i also made a law after my name it's called the guest law everytime someone post with the name 'guest' the post has high chances to be terrible
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I'm OK with it, basically. This site does add some lustre to Mittani's "brand", but having worked with the people who manage and contribute to the site, regardless of what Mr Gianturco's *true* intent might be, I can safely say that the people who write the articles have the good of the game at heart, and write the truth as they see it. I have experienced zero editorial interference, and haven't heard any complaints from any of the contributors that there has been any. I'm not sure what more you could reasonably want or expect from a site providing free content. What, precisely, is your problem?
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I doubt anyone on Kugu gives a shit about me, let alone my thoughts on game balance. I'm much more prolific on the EVE-O forums, which is what this article is about. As you might have inferred from the links in it.
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Too late, I've already "finished".
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Observational evidence supports your hypothesis.
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I could cite plenty of counter-examples to that proposed second law. It's true that the "sandbox" term is wildly abused, as many posters seem to think it means "I'm entitled to get whatever I want", but plenty of people use it correctly also.
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Few people really like the idea that special treatment for them isn't really a good idea :(
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Confronted with such obvious, transcendant genius as this, the only possible response is a respectful silence, seasoned with an expression of awed admiration.
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The NPE made changes to mechanics, not the least of which was a big boost in the rewards, greater standings improvements, and ofc better actual tutorials.
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As I have repeatedly confirmed, all my pieces are in support of the obvious. However it is the nature of the obvious to be much more so after it has been explained and logically supported, just as "common sense" is much more common after the first person to sense it and say so.
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Even if it doesn't explain anything you haven't worked out for yourself, at the very least it's a static link that you can use to respond to proposals for special treatment. I hope it's at least that useful for you.
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Indeed I can. I was the first person to succintly and pithily articulate the principle. Just as objects with mass would continue travelling along an existing vector unless a force was applied to them long before Mr Newton was even conceived, that's sufficient to get one's name applied to a concept.
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Good read dude. I've always enjoyed your posting.When are you running for CSM? ;)
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I suppose we could devolve into a semantic spat about what counts as “mechanics.” I’d dispute that better tutorials are a change in *mechanics*. Rather they are redeploying existing mechanics in a better fashion. Boosted rewards and greater standing improvements strikes me as a gray area but I’ll grant them as minor mechanical changes and stand rebuked. The very obscurity of such an argument only goes to display the wide ranging applicability of your law.If I understand the gist of your post correctly, you suspect that the fact that special treatment will always be exploitable means it’s best to not engage in special treatment. You then conclude with a “rising tide raises all boats” finish. Though a wonderful way to run a democratic government, it strikes me as dubious business strategy. CCP rewards long term loyal customers with extraordinary benefits. If nothing else, simply training on the skill queue via loyally paying your subscription fee improves one's abilities and unlocks options not available to the untrained competition. CCP rewards loyalty. That players tend to call such benefits “earned” rather than “special” reveals how much they've bought into CCP’s business strategy.You seem stunned at the surprisingly self-serving and prescriptive aspects of your law. I’m no less stunned at how silent players are about special benefits they already receive.
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I'm not qualified to say whether it's a "dubious business strategy". All I'm able to say is that, barring an utterly radical change in the way EVE is structured, any change which *isn't* based on the "rising tide" principle *will* be disproportionately exploited by the old rich guys. CCP can let that inform their business strategy or not; it's true either way. to me it seems like better tactics to at least take it into account when making changes.
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As per my previous article here: http://themittani.com/features... basically everything about EVE that isn't about player interaction is terrible. The metagaming isn't a "cottage industry" in EVE; it's the whole point.
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Yeah I mean I thought everyone did.
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Point taken, not a bad gig CCP has going - makes you wonder why they keep acting in a manner that suggests it's not their intention...The linked article is a good read.

5 Years of Lex Malcanis 

A little less than 5 years ago, when I was still much more unironically enraptured with EVE Online A Bad HOLY SHIT SPACESHIPS!!! Game (and even more enraptured with having a whole new set of forums to indulge my prolixity in), I noticed a common theme to many of the complaints, proposals and ideas that revolted my new-found sandbox sensibility.

This set of suggestions was defined by a pair of common themes.  Firstly, and rather predictably, they were intensely self-serving. That's not unexpected, and it's not even wholly wrong. Players posted from their own perspective about problems that affected them and they made suggestions that they thought would fix the problem as they saw it. That's understandable, even if it usually produces bad ideas. They were being made by people with the aim of boosting the reward and reducing the risk of their particular professions and playstyle, which is only to be expected in such an intensely competitive game. 

The second, rather more interesting common characteristic  was that these Bad Ideas™ were invariably reinforced by the proposer with "and of course, this will help new players".

On closer examination - and usually you didn't even have to examine them very closely - they either didn't do a damn thing for new players or, much more frequently, the minor benefit that accrued to new players was greatly outweighed by the far greater advantages inevitably gained by old, rich, experienced players. I'm not going to go into any detail discussing the most common proposals justified in this way; the dreary plainsong of people trying to turn the only SF-themed sandbox with non-consensual PvP into yet another grind4epix (+ spaceships) wonderland continues essentially unchanged to this day, and you can go and read these game-design coelacanths, virtually unchanged by time, in General Discussion or The Assembly Hall whenever you choose: Buff CONCORD; lock mission deadspaces; ban scamming; NPC escorts; turn lo-sec into hi-sec; bring level 5s back to hi-sec, et cetera et ad nauseam in eternis.

What was slightly more surprising was that after a fair bit of investigation, I was unable at that time to find any "for the new player" suggestions that didn't somehow more strongly benefit older, richer, more experienced players. I expected this from the suggestions made by old rich experienced players, but it also seemed to be true of suggestions made by fresh-faced, damp-eared newbies too.

And thus, "Malcanis' Law" was born:

 "Whenever a mechanics change is proposed on behalf of 'new players', that change is always to the overwhelming advantage of richer, older players."

Now it is important to remember that at the time, I meant the Law to be a descriptive one: it wasn't to say that any change had to be that way, only that they always were.  It was originally a law about the people making the proposals to change EVE, not a law about change itself.  It was intended to be the equivalent of Godwin's Law for discussions about rebalancing EVE, because they invariably devolved down to "and of course it will benefit new players if we change X" in exactly the same way the internet political discussions invariably end in a race to call the other side literally Hitler. I didn't imagine the law as a prescriptive one: that is to say that any proposed change would disproportionately benefit older players whether it was being justified in this way or not.

In the following 5 years, I saw my little Law fulfillled hundreds of times, as you no doubt did yourselves if you follow the forums at all. The Assembly Hall became the cesspit of self-interest we all know and love, General Discussion was generally graced with a round half dozen threads on the front page at all times with serious suggestions to completely rewrite the basis of the game "to help new players (and also coincidentally me!)".  And the off-site forums weren't much better

In only a few, very specific cases of actually implemented changes was the law broken, and then not by much, and those cases mostly had one thing in common.  Let's look at the 3 biggest examples:

First and most famous: the removal of Learning Skills and the refund of the SP invested into the Learning Skills. This unquestionably benefitted new players, as it removed a huge section of skill training that was required early in a characters career. These meta-skills didn't do anything in themselves, but allowed you to acquire other skills faster. CCP actually didn't so much remove them as simply give them fully trained to everyone. In fact, at the time, I thought this change did follow the Law, because all the old players received a lump sum of refunded skillpoints that they could immediately invest in whatever skills they wanted, allowing them an instant gain of up to 5,400,000 instantly applicable SP, and of course their disposable alts would now all have a +15 SP/minute training bonus, reducing the gameplay/interaction niches available for "real" new players. Additionally, older players who had already got their core skills with friendly stat requirements trained up could use those SP for skills with awkward stat combinations, saving further training time and increasing their effective advantage over the new players. Mathematically speaking I was correct, but in practice I had lost sight of the fact that not everyone is as patient (and mildly OCD) as me, and that removing the learning skills was such a vast improvement in the quality of life for genuine new players that even the very considerable bonus to older players was overshadowed.  (This was one of the incidents that gave me the insight that EVE is about people first, numbers second.)

Second: the Tiercide project and the Tech 1 Frigate, Destroyer & Cruiser rebalance. An unquestionably successful program of change that has revitalised PvP, especially in Empire, the tiercide project's goal of "No ship left behind" has in my opinion done more to help new players to engage with the game than any single change CCP have made since I started playing. All the T1 Frigates and Cruisers are now worth flying on their own merits and have credible, viable roles in PvP. The bad old days of Caldari players essentially having nothing to look forward to but being the ECM guy until they could train up their Drakes, and later their T2 Large Hybrids, are gone. The era of "Rifter or get out" frigate combat is over. Even older players have started flying these long forgotten hulls - at first out of curiousity, now as viable cheap alternatives for low-stakes PvP like scratch roams, new FC fleets, casual piracy thunderdomes and so on, as well as Faction Warfare..

Third: The New Player Experience. Virtually the only worthwhile thing to come out of CCP during the Incarna era, the NPE saw improved tutorials with buffed rewards, a widening of the range in activities covered by the tutorials, and even a mission with mandatory ship loss to introduce new players to the vital concept of only flying what one can afford to lose. There's not much to say about this: it greatly benefits new players, and no one else gets much out of it. It flatly breaks Malcanis Law, unlike the other two changes, which merely benefit old and new together.

Or does it?

Well yes, in a literal sense, it does. But it's interesting to see what limitations had to be applied to the third change for it to completely reverse the Law and get away with it, and to then compare it to the first two changes. First and foremost, the new tutorials have almost zero effect on the wider game. It's pretty difficult to imagine a scenario where you use tutorials to change someone else's game experience. Secondly, they really only do matter to new players. The tutorials would function equally well if new players were started out on SiSi and ran them there. For a proposal to outright break Malcanis' Law, it has to be so tightly focused that it might as well not exist for the game at large.

The other two changes have in common that they weren't aimed specifically at new players. They were changes that were made to improve the game for everyone, and as a result new players benefitted strongly. It turns out that Malcanis Law is just a special case of a more generally applicable law:

"Any change that is made to privilege a specific group in an open, classless game will invariably be to the greater benefit of older, richer, more experienced players"

In short: special treatment will always be exploitable.  If you want to see the game experience for your pet demographic improved, be that new players, ninja salvagers, gas miners, or whoever, then it is invariably true that they only way to make sure that they don't get less benefit out of the change than those old rich guys is to make sure that there are no special exemptions, no special treatments, no privileges. Because those old rich high-SP guys are always going to be the ones with the game knowledge, the investment capital, the spare time, the contacts, the pre-existing skills, the ships purchased and ready to go and so on who can best exploit any newly introduced imbalance. No matter how tempting it is to advocate "just one" little special sanctuary, a "merely temporary" privilege, no matter how deserving the intended receipients, these players will be lurking like Nile Crocodiles just below the surface of the cool, tempting waters of favourable treatment. 

Lately we've seen some interesting examples of this in the Jita Park forum, with various proposals to reform the CSM voting and representation process in order to "break the nullsec monopoly and allow hi-sec representation". That has a rather familar tang to it, doesn't it? And of course the results were wholly predictable: every single suggestion made was without exception trivially exploitable by the large, well-organised nullsec demographic to increase their influence in the CSM. The only exception was a proposal to improve the information flow to potential voters and ensure that players who don't visit the forums are aware that the CSM even exists, and that would merely benefit the well-organised players only as much as the hi-seccers.

It might be possible to get away with special treatment and new player privileges in other MMOs, with their level zoning, and their soul binding and so on. Personally I wouldn't be surprised if the Law operates there too except when specifically restrained by developer fiat.  But in EVE? Never! The game is too open, too malleable, the players far too unrestricted in their options, too developed in their communication skills, too sophisticated in their analysis of the subtlest advantage. So in the end, Malcanis Law can be broken. Changes can benefit new players. But that vast majority, the 99.999th percentile of suggested changes to EVE, are made not for the benefit of the game as a whole but for the benefit of the person making the suggestion. These changes will always follow the general case of the Law. Any CCP-implemented imbalance between opportunity and effort will be maximally exploited quicker than you can say "Reprocess 1.29M units of Pax Amarria per day". 

Don't try and make EVE "better for new players"; just try to make the game better for everyone and the new players (or miners, or solo PvP, or small alliances, or hi-sec CSM voters) will benefit just fine.

[name_1]