Creation and Destruction

Avatar
I agree with the premise and solution of this article. And while I am sure someone will get upset and ask why the writer did not suggest some fix, I think its important to highlight the issues adversely affecting null sec as it should be a worthwhile endpoint destination for players activities.
Avatar
No matter what you do to 0.0 mechanics while the F1 serf culture and the general contempt for any non PvP activity continues to exist in the majority 0.0 Alliances it will remain an under populated and basically pointless region.This is something CCP can do nothing about, it comes down to the people living there and their inability to accept there are more than one way to skin a cat.
Avatar
An endgame you might be interested in is corp/alliance logistics and middle management. With how difficult industry is in null, the folks who maintain and fuel important POSses, seed markets, and generally do everything possible to support the war-fighting capability of an alliance are heroes. It's a hell of a challenge, and you might find it a very rewarding application of your skills.:Like Etherealpain, I'd suggest joining the CFC/HBC. These meta alliances make no outright demands of their players, nor do they attempt to judge your value as a member through your killboard, wallet, or productivity, the competitive stress of which has killed the game for me in past alliances.
Avatar
now to see more then 40 of you in a single fleet, should be easy with all those people in stations...
Avatar
The problem with approaches to incentivizing industry that include "let's give them a discount on mineral usage" is that skills get you most of the way to perfect production, research gets you the rest of the way, or close enough.Go any further and then you're in a scenario where minerals are being created out of thin air - build at better than perfect, refine into perfect, repeat ad infinitum. And you can't simply say "well, nullsec can produce anything perfectly, period" that's not really a big enough bonus, because of the aforementioned skills and research.Industry is one of those places where something has to give in highsec to help make nullsec more attractive. Highsec production costs nothing - even the slots in Jita are 1000 to install, 333 per hour to use. 2000 isk extra to a battleship - big fucking deal. The nullsec producer is paying for fuel, both to jump and (if we're talking about POS production being viable) to run his POS.
Avatar
I have been following the new POSs very closely, this is the first thing that CCP will be writing from the ground up in a very long time. This has the potential for vastly changing the game, and the CSM will have more input into this then any other addition to the game. Through effective lobbying of the CSM I think 2013 can be a landmark year for Eve.
Avatar
Am I the only one the it's tired of the constant stream of intelectuals that want to fix EVE?If EVE was brocken, I wouldn't play it. If EVE gets too many changes, then it might get brocken. Seems really simple to me.
Avatar
I think Factional Warfare is a perfect example of what you said (might have even been the article you were referring to).
Avatar
Fiscal incentives only last for so long. once someone becomes 'space rich', they need a new goal. Simply amassing large quantities of isk won't do it for alot of people.
Avatar
I think having a jump capable ship like the rorqual that can chew up ores in 0.0 at a vastly faster pace, solo (but lol @ solo cap ships waiting to be KMs) would be a good idea. But i doubt I have the 'whole picture' of eve in mind when i say this. Just that it would be cool (just like Titians were developed).
Avatar
Nah, it was a comment in weaselior's first article, like I said. If anything, faction warfare is a great counter-example. Based on interviews with soundwave and whatnot they had a pretty decent set of objectives, a good framework. They just blew it on the implementation, and as a result, are scrapping a large chunk of those objectives with the winter patch.
Avatar
Sadly, you aren't an intellectual yourself so you don't see that it is in fact broken in lots of ways. Ignorance is a bliss, isn't it ?
Avatar
a ship like this might change that rather fast.
Avatar
No, you are not, but why do you call them intellectuals?! *lol* He is another complainer who takes himself too important. If anything is he lacking intelligence. He wants more destruction and creation, he wants to change it to match his need. It is the same old whine. The game is not about him. What these complainers don't want to see is that the economy balances it for all players. As soon as there is too much destruction do prices go up and player begin to construct more. When there is too much creation do the prices drop and more fighting starts. The balance has always been there, he only wants moooaaarrrr and he wants it all to come his way.Funniest part of his conclusion is where he wants to have a good reason to fight. As if he was the best fighter in EVE. Can you believe him?!? *lol*
Avatar
Good article!Although, I feel like you should have offered more in the way of solutions. It is not incredibly difficult to point out flaws, but solutions to fix those flaws are a different matter.
Avatar
And you are? ... With that finishing line of yours "ignorance is bliss" do you have to be an intellectual, surely.The truth is that many teenager try to reflect themselves over the Internet in the best possible way these days. From facebook to twitter, always trying to show a perfect picture of themselves. It does not make you intellectuals, but it makes you narcissists. Use the web, look it up.
Avatar
"[...]the CSM will have more input into this then any other addition to the game"This does very little to inspire confidence.
Avatar
A ship like this would make things even worse. The imbalance between highsec and nullsec mining right now is because it's already hilariously easy for nullsec (as a whole) to produce all the high end minerals necessary for any amount of low ends being produced in empire. Implementing a means to allow nullsec miners to produce even more minerals, even faster, is not the solution.
Avatar
I knew this author had a brain when he said the usual reason predators die out is because they are too successful - they kill off their prey. Finally someone understands it's an ecosystem and if you don't pay attention to the bottom and give it way to live, the top eventually dies.
Avatar
Shoo.
Avatar
That's kind of the point. The fiscal incentives revitalize smaller scale pvp. So you will make much more money but it will happen in a situation where you are easy to kill.Basically by making you far more profitable but only by going to a dangerous place you'll either need to be more careful or you'll get blown up a lot more after which you need to buy more things.Ideally the increased profit is met by increased fighting which causes people to buy things and hopefully keeping everything pretty balanced.
Avatar
Oh noes, it shoo'ed me! *lol*
Avatar
You touched on it in the sov warfare section, but didn't follow through the premise.That is there used to be a spectrum of region values; if you lived in one, there was always another one more valuable next door. And the reason was better rats and mining. Now, the better regions are WAY better than the not-so-good regions, because they have Tech, ie moon mining.Now moon goo drives conflict, except of course it doesn't, because moon goo owners are vastly richer than their enemies. Only moon goo alliances can afford to fight each other.The point is, moon goo is alliance level income. Ratting and mining is primarily an individual/corp level income. An alliance living in a non-goo region doesn't have much incentive to move to a slightly better system for ratting/mining, even if majority of its members would, because the alliance gains nothing from moving to a region with slightly better rats, but the same moon goo.So again we go back to the same points. Distribute moon goo more evenly, in a way that creates a value continuum, and increase the importance to the alliance of individual alliance member income. It's great that individual members contribute to the whole, that the whole is more valuable than the sum of its parts. But clearly some parts are vastly more valuable than others. Moon goo mining is an activity for a very small, trusted group of people who operate and run the POS. Only time others even hear about them is when one is under attack, and now you have an all-hands-on-deck CTA to defend some POS you've never heard of belonging to some corp you probably didn't even know existed.
Avatar
Wow, I guess formatting gets messed up when you copy/paste between browsers. Oh well, leave it to fancy whiz bang dynamic HTML5 or whatever to mess up something as simple as text.
Avatar
Why not, then, have pos modules that must be placed outside the shields which are, say, one order of magnitude better than Empire equivalents?Build ships 10 times faster, for 1/10th the mineral cost, but all your built ships and all your mins are exposed. Bonus points if there's a minimum amount of minerals to put in and a minimum amount of time before produced ships can be removed.Hell have BPO research/copy that gets done 10-20 times faster but requires you to expose the BPO in a similar manner.e. Gallente POS mod: Pleasure Barge, disables pos shields, only module that can be attached to it, spawns tons of high value rats.
Avatar
We use Disqus to handle our comments. It's approach to dynamic formatting is... variable...
Avatar
"there is no industry in 0.0"Holy shit have any of you ever flown through Cobalt Edge? Just take a casual stroll through IRC space someday. D-scan any of the core systems )Those in the EBY constellation) On any given day and see 15+ Rorqs and Orcas, supporting an ungodly amount of mining barges. (I once saw over 100+ macs in CBY mining ice). IRC is a bunch of carebears that supply 0.0 sovwars with alot of resources and ships. Goons may have tech on thier side, but DOTbros have a retardedly big industrial base funneling them ships. It's mostly the only reason NCDOT keeps IRC's low PvP base around, IRC is mining the mins, building the mods, and fitting the AHACS faster than goons can kill them.
Avatar
The bad part is IRC was doing this on a scale x1,000 before the drone goo nerf. Trit was flooded from hell in back because of this, and when it was taken away prices skyrocketed as well as inflation caused by incursions/FW. Indy is only lacking in regions that didn't have drones before the nerf to them, and its because of drone poo and now mining why an alliance like IRC survives in its space. The problem with these entities though is that there is no real way to disrupt their industry. Like the author of this article said, the industry in a 0.0 region is either not worth hitting, or too much work to hit with medium/small gangs. What needs to happen is a more profitable but a more vulnerable POS system that has the ability to be targeted by smaller entities, while still providing enough incentive to be used over stations. What would be good is if the force field on a POS didn't protect its modules and you could target someones refinery or assembly array, but only under a hail of bullets from the POS guns.
Avatar
The best way to find a working solution is to first properly identify the problem.
Avatar
Damn those intellectuals and their intellectual thoughts. Let's just all shut our brains off and the world will be so much better, right?
Avatar
Awww, recognition :D
Avatar
Simple solution to think over:Remove the ability to anchor POCO (Control Towers) in high sec, period.Move level 4 missions into low sec, simply: no level 4 Agents in high sec.Bonus production and industry POCO and POS in 0.0 according to system true sec. The lower the true sec (the closer to true 0.0) the stronger the bonus. Further, add penalties to industry in high sec stations (Red tape gives an excellent excuse). Essentially, high sec has penalties to it (time and resource requirement), low sec is pretty well neutral (no penalties but no bonuses as well), and 0.0 sec has enough buffs that if you don't manufacture there you cant compete.A shallow point of view perhaps, but if you do this, you lose a very large part of the population that was in EVE for the wrong reasons (practically risk free carebear'ing), and you suddenly create massive potential for 0.0 industry as well as low sec industry.
Avatar
Everything is produced in Empire, traded in Jita, and destroyed in 0.0 - is that you call a balance? If nullsec were an isolated system, then yeah - "the invisible hand of market" would settle it up. But there is hisec, and thus your argument is not valid. Can you see as Goons tend to harass empire people? They only obey to their predator instincts. But they are being punished by a nerf bat, as hisec are supposed to be secure. This is a very bad type of a balance, if any.
Avatar
I doubt losing "a very large part of the population" would fly for CCP regardless of the reason. If they're not playing the game at all, there's no chance that they'll monetise move to low/nullsec
Avatar
I had high expectations of this follow-up after the first article.This did not disappoint.Excellent!
Avatar
A mining capital you say?http://themittani.com/features...
Avatar
There was a recent discussion with a Deklein based corp that wanted a bill isk as I was joining for industry. Neither myself or the recruiter wanted to put the billion isk deposit which partly lead to my original thinking that corps and alliances don't need more industry characters to do market PvP against.
Avatar
"Everything is produced in Empire, ..." - You are an awful whiner! Shut up and never come back.
Avatar
Amen brother.
Avatar
Some nice points in there, if I may add what null sec needs is a good draw for "carebear miners", since at the moment the vast majority of them have no real reason to leave empire space and are pretty much the herbivores of eve pvp food chain.Thing is from a miners point of view, being in null is like being permanently war deced, and when your war deced mining becomes rather unprofitable, to the point where being war deced for a long time can cause a corp to lose more nebie miners like nothing else.Here a pair of idea's..1) The ability to make a system more "secure". To make this meaningful and fair it need to be something a miner can rely on when his buddies aren't about, it can't be as good as concord and it need to be linked to something that can be targeted. I advise a security base that can be built and upgraded over time that can send out patrols and response teams. These patrol and teams should be something that can give a lone pvper or small gang cause for concern, but not a fleet!2) Something that makes null sec mining more profitable than high sec mining. Again I be tempted to link this to a destroyable and upgradable asset, lets call it asteroid attractor. Since mining in null is more risky, there need to be a better reward for time ratio, something that makes the empire miner tempted to figure out the solution to the security issues and reward them for being more clue up than there risk adverse high sec mining buddies.
Avatar
Working on wrecking that culture at my own corps level myself. The way I'm going about it is proving to them you won't do stupid stuff when in a mining barge, and ensuring you can bring something pvp able to important ops.Giving them very very good prices on pvp gear can help too! :)
Avatar
Rat in PVP fits erry day.
Avatar
There is not enough low end material in a null sec system to complete that task. I can already strip the belts in a given system in less then 10 hours with minimal effort. (and I am one man with a few accounts) the grav sites cycle when complete but you would have to clear everything to get back to the trit/pyrite/mexalon yielding ores.
Avatar
Yeah.My corporation handles a lot of logistics and production for Intrepid Crossing up in Cobalt Edge. It's a lot of work. Every week, my corporation makes 20-30 jump freighter round-trips + about 20-30 carrier round-trips just to move goods out to 0.0 to supply our corporation plus some of the alliance's needs.Generally we only ship crap back to empire (PI stuff that we don't need in 0.0 and moving it to sell cheaply is better than trashing it). We move all sorts of things out to 0.0 -- lots of minerals, tons of isotopes, and ships and modules. If the jump freighters were nerfed in any significant way, living in Cobalt Edge would become pretty much intolerable. It's already a crazy amount of work.Although I will say that we did build an Amarr outpost. We try to do as much production in 0.0 as we can, but honestly, it's usually not worth the trouble. It's worth shipping the high end minerals back to our production system in empire and then hauling the goods back. Even though 0.0 provides more risk and danger, I'd much rather have our production base be by our home than have to truck things up and down the galaxy.Production at home means more haulers running around, more ratters, more miners, more of everything in 0.0 which makes roaming gangs more fun, which makes defensive fleets more fun, etc etc... so: yes, please. I support the message in this post.
Avatar
A while back when they announced the pos revamp I thought it would be great if ccp would use the pos system to allow players to create "mission sites" that would passively create materials for them (minerals like trit in a mining site, ice, implants, boosters, ect.) The player could employ npc's to staff the buildings ( isk sink ) and other npc's (that have no bounty on them) to protect the mission site (isk sink) or decide to leave it completely undefended.When I brought this idea up in the past people just called it a PI ripoff and failed to see it would be those farms and villages mentioned in the op. The sites would be easy to destroy, hard-ish to find, and drop valuable resources.In any case, good article, the author understands what makes eco-systems thrive and what kills them.
Avatar
very good post , 100% agree !!!
Avatar
I've always thought the biggest problem with production in nullsec was the inverted nature of mineral compression. Almost every finished good takes up less space than the material needed to make it. Given that, it's only natural that production would cluster around market hubs that sell materials, rather than around hubs where people consume finished goods (like VFK).There already are daily freighter runs out to null. But those frieghters are carrying finished goods instead of trit because that's the most efficient use of their space. If, for example, minerals took up 1/10th the volume, people would be importing minerals and producing locally in order to compete with the people just importing finished goods.
Avatar
Please explain why in your own humble opinion my skill sheet is "terribad". Could it be the lack of cap ship skills or too many industry based skill points. Perhaps I could do with more armour skills.Eve is great because I will get those skills, in the meantime I will continue to refine for zero waste and zero tax in empire and not have to pay arbitrary tax to the owning corp out in null usually with worse base refining which won't hurt as I've trained to mitigate the loss due to experience.
Avatar
Was definitely a scam. I'm not a scammer, though, but a legitimate 0.0 recruiter, and we need indy types at the moment. We also require a 1B ISK deposit, but 50% is returnable on the first delivery of 100 doctrine battleships at Jita + 10% or lower prices on alliance contract. The other 50% is returnable after a second product delivery (usually negotiated on a case-by-case basis). Basically, we just want a deposit to keep out freeloaders, and an indy character showing up with lots of goods for sale gives us that assurance.If you're interested eve-mail Eledhwon.
Avatar
There is some good and big points in here. The article is really good imho ofc.Just yesterday we land in Vale of the silent - presumably our new home. And i ask myself - what i want to do, right now , with friends. May i go shoot stuff , yeah ! But stuff is suddenly only "gate camping" - there is practically NOTHING else you can shoot for making someone worse off. To destroy a tower one needs a bigger fleet than small gang (offlined towers do not count)To destroy a ihub/station/hell even a poco you need BIG gang or super/capitals.And as the author mentioned here - there is hardly anyone to gank/lure in belts. Anomalies too.What i am supposed to do with few friends ? - We are limited to gate camping, shotguning systems and trying to catch something with hot drops(and involving a titan hardly counts for small gang).THATS EVERYTHING a small gang can perform in 0.0. Yes there is variations of hardness and inventiveness - but that's it - and eventually it gets boring. Especially as 0.0 combat lately can be defined as blobbing - with either numbers or supers.In one and a half years of my play i have yet to see a time when we shot someone in comparable size in small/mid sized gang and we used logistics. Its always - our small group/camp slaughtering 2-3:1 someone.Maybe we are that good ? Or maybe its pretty hard to get fights when only thing we can fight for is gate camps or big structures ?
Avatar
The problem with mineral prices right now is the massive imbalance in supply of low vs high ends. High-ends are oversupplied coming from null, and low-end production in empire isn't enough to burn through all those high ends. 820 isk zydrine and 5.74 isk trit is a completely reversed value curve.What is neeed is a way to fix this imbalance. Change mineral reqs for bc's to be far more tilted to high ends, or a way to supply infinite low-ends in null, similar to the way you can spawn infinite high-ends. Pushing value in the "mineral basket" back to the high ends would go a long way towards encouraging more miners in nullsec.
Avatar
Well written, even if the author shares the flawed view that valuable moon goo regions allow small alliances to come in and start up off some moons, and progress down the chain.This is simply not true. While larger alliances will not occupy entire regions, they will control the most valuable moons, in regions they do not live in. This is done with a tactic called threats. (Or protection.) An alliance like goonswarm, -A-, etc, will 'claim' a region. That is to say, they will fight to remove the residents of a region, then establish POSes on the most valuable moons in that region. They will then either rent, or allow another alliance to move in, with a non-structure battle agreement, ie, neither party will attack the other parties structures, but roams and random pvp are fine, on the condition that the newcomer leaves their moon mining poses alone. The smaller alliance does not attack the moons, for fear of incurring the wrath of the established alliance, and the established alliance retains the flow of isk from the moons. Thus, the rich get richer, and the new alliances do not actually capitalize from the moons.This is why your post is fundamentally flawed, and does not present an effective solution. We already had it like that, and it didn't work.

In my last article, I laid out a vision of what 0.0 could be. In this article, I'm going to lay out a better way to think about the flaws with nullsec and the best approach to remedying them using the approach I laid out.

The largest issue with 0.0 is sometimes thought of in terms of destruction. Simply put, that there’s not enough to destroy. What there is there to destroy is too hard to destroy. Systems in 0.0 are far more deserted than Empire; even alliances that actually live in nullsec will only inhabit one or two outposts, while the rest of the region is home to a handful of people per system (if that). Removing local and making outposts destructible, two commonly advocated solutions to fixing 0.0, have nothing to do with this issue. The problem is not that the one ratter in five systems can safe up as soon as he sees a hostile ship; it’s that there is only one ratter in five systems. Similarly, the long-standing complaints that an alliance can simply keep fleeing to NPC space when you evict them cannot be solved through burning down their region once you leave; there are no real rewards for living in 0.0 except for pride, so any further barrier to entry like burnable outposts is simply another reason for that alliance not to bother putting anything important in those outposts or live there in the first place.

The way to fix 0.0 lies through rebuilding the things to destroy, not through tweaks to combat allowing you to bomb the rubble even more vigoriously. We’ll go through each of these in turn, starting with the lowest-level combat and moving up.

Ratting and Mining: Supplying the Peasants to Put to the Sword

Ganking is generally done just for the hell of it: fish swim, birds fly, EVE players spend their time trying to make other people as miserable as possible. People are going to gank or not gank based on how much effort they'll need to put into it, not if there's a profit to it. For some time, ganking in 0.0 has just not been worth the effort: it's hard as all hell and you usually can't find anyone to gank. As a result there are frequent calls to make ganking easier — generally by nerfing local. That approach is misguided. Predators don’t tend to die off because they’re not good enough at killing their prey. They tend to die off when all the prey has been killed or driven off, starving to death because they are too good. When you’ve fished out the cod in Cape Cod so effectively the nets are coming up dry every summer the solution isn’t to get better nets: it’s to stop devouring every single fish before they can recover their numbers. Likewise, when you introduce an apex predator into a new enviroment and it quickly butchers everything in sight except the mice, the key to keeping it hunting isn't giving it the ability to catch mice.

The problem with small-gang ganking (small gangs looking for random people to shoot rather than looking for honourable fair fights, i.e. every single player in EVE) and 0.0 ganking — the problem isn’t local. Local is one of the few things actually keeping anyone sitting around in 0.0 waiting to get ganked. It’s that the incentive to sit in a belt mining or ratting is so low that there’s so few people to gank. Take empire, for example: if I pilot my ganking crew into an ice belt and start ganking away, people can — if they’ve got half a brain — keep themselves perfectly safe. But there are so many people that I can easily gorge myself on the idiots. It’s clear this model works: in VFK, there’s always enough idiots packed into the system that someone will fall into your drag bubble between the jump bridge and the station no matter how many times it’s reported in intel channels and no matter how easily you can be seen in local.

0.0 gankers and small gangs are predators. They need prey, they need a lot of it, and they need it grazing contentedly in the fields, fat, happy, and ready to be devoured. The basic prey, the foundation of the 0.0 combat ecosystem, are the ratters and miners: grazing in the belts & anomalies, defenseless, relying on fleeing in time for safety. When a ganker comes into the system the proper outcome is a race: is the ratter attentive enough to safe up before the ganker finds him? A good ecosystem will let the prey get away as long as they act properly, but if they’re too greedy or lazy? Well, then they’re lunch.

Nerfing local wouldn’t have the effect of making it easier to gank ratters: there would be no ratters. You’d get a few weeks of PVP like hunting buffalo from a train with a machine gun, but then they’d be gone. Ratting in 0.0 doesn’t pay significantly better than other options: people mostly do it so they can live in their space. At certain points (ratting in carriers) it can pay off much better — and that’s a great thing. Ganking ratting carriers is hilarious, everyone loves it. Naturally, it’s in for a nerf, but it should not be.

How should 0.0 rewards for “grazing” activities be pegged? Well, for starters they need to be higher. Many people could rat, but do not because it’s not worth the effort. Those people need to be lured into the belts, lured into tengus, and lured into shooting red crosses instead of safer activities that generate no chance of combat. Next, it needs to reward stupidity. What makes empire ganking so much fun is that in every case your prey could have done the smart thing but didn’t. He fit a pure mining fit on his mackinaw before the barge buff and toodled into a Gallente ice belt in the middle of the Gallente Ice Interdiction. Or he stuffed 20 billion ISK worth of stuff in a freighter and autopiloted through Niarja. He did something dumb that normally he gets rewarded for, and in exchange he got the possibility of being butchered like a hog. That’s what’s so great about ratting carriers: well, you got lazy and sat your 1.3B carrier in an anomaly and didn’t watch local, and now the small gang running through just got a kill that made the last thirty minutes of hunting worth it.

In addition there’s room for a new profession: the supplying of Tritanium and Pyerite to the 0.0 market. The Trit Problem — that there is no consummately abundant source of Trit in 0.0 — has been the most significant handicap to 0.0 industry for close to a decade. No serious attempt has ever been made to fix it (indeed, at one point devs thought it was reasonable to expect people to import raw Tritanium in freighter ops and nerfed compression to exacerbate it, a real contender for Most Mind-Boggling Design Decision Ever Made in EVE). This could be done merely by seeding SuperVeld in 0.0, or creating some sort of “blast mining” that would allow the rapid harvesting of Trit asteroids in belts. Or, POS could mine and compress it in some easy-to-steal way. It’s a problem that absolutely must be solved, and when there’s many fun ways to solve the problem it should be done in a way that creates new people to kill.

Industry: Building Farms and Villages to Sack and Burn

Mid-tier combat — mid-sized gang objectives with some strategic value — is the most neglected type of combat in 0.0. It’s the burning farms and villages of 0.0, except that those don’t really exist in current nullsec. Only two things really exist at this level: taking tech moons, and destroying CSAA's. Both of these are strategic assets of such value that they’re not really a separate category of combat: they’re merely the introductory part of a sovereignty war, the soft targets you can hit before dealing with the misery of station timers.

This tier is neglected because it’s about destroying industry, and industry is virtually dead in 0.0. Virtually everything in 0.0 is brought in with jump freighters, built in empire and bought in Jita. Some people realize this and argue for the nerfing of the jump freighter. Those people are idiots. The jump freighter is the only thing keeping 0.0 markets alive: in the current system 0.0 industry simply cannot function or compete. Every tier of manufacturing is broken in 0.0.

It’s well known that industry in 0.0 is broken: we’ve heard platitudes from CCP about fixing it. However, it does not appear that CCP, or indeed most EVE players in general, understand why fixing industry in 0.0 is vitally important. It’s not just necessary to fix industry to please those who like building ships or the like (a small minority of people in 0.0). The broken status of 0.0’s industry affects everyone.

However, that’s not the only problem: the model of industry is broken when it comes to 0.0. Station-based industry leaves nothing to attack. There are some forms of industry that exist in 0.0 that can be built up, attacked, and defended, but they’re rare and poorly implemented.

POCO's and POSes are the prototype of the village: you put one up, and you’ve got the chance to do something you couldn’t otherwise. In return, your enemies get to destroy it. It’s the right idea. It’s also so badly implemented I cannot recall a single episode of anyone shooting an industry POS or a POCO and coming back to destroy it since Goonswarm blew up a bunch of towers in empire just for the hell of it several years ago.

Why are they terrible? Three main reasons: they’re cheap, they have extremely high EHP and a reinforcement timer, and there’s no profit in it. Shooting a POCO requires you to chew through 10 million EHP, wait a while, then chew through 4.5 million more. That’s incredibly boring. It also cost the defender something paltry like 200 million ISK, and that’s for eight man-hours of work. If you’ve lost eight hours of your life and I lost 200 million ISK, I’m pretty sure I came out ahead. What do you get out of all of this work? Well, you can drop a POCO of your own but in enemy space there’s not a chance you can hold it. All you’ll manage to do is grief your enemies into going through the awfulness you’ve just gone through... except it’s their space and they can get away with using supercarriers instead. Not a good trade.

For POS, you’ve got more EHP, and less point. There are several types of POS: the ratting POS (just the bubble), the reactor POS (reacting t2 materials for export), the research POS, and the industry POS. The industry POS doesn’t actually exist: they’re terrible and nobody uses them for anything except Titans because they’re just like an Amarr outpost except worse in every way. For research POS there is nothing of value in the tower itself: any BPO's are sitting safely in a station. You could steal the labs themselves but the defender can simply unanchor and scoop them. Same with a reactor POS: a reactor POS that’s sieged can be emptied and stripped by the defender. Ultimately, you wind up bashing a POS with more EHP than a POCO but costs less: you cost the defender 175-200m and waste a great deal more of your time.

Why are industrial pos worthless? Well, you can’t refine at one (POS refineries are worthless), so it’s all the fun of building in an Amarr outpost except all your stuff can be blown up. (Unlike reactors, you cannot empty a ship assembly array on a reinforced POS.) In exchange your freighter runs of Tritanium are slightly shorter (refinery -> POS instead of refinery -> jump bridge POS -> station) and you build slower. Since nobody use Amarr factories now, you can see why nobody uses these either. Industrial POS exist in 0.0 only to build supercapitals, and only then because you can’t build them any other way.

Nobody shoots these things. It's a huge amount of effort, it's boring, and you get nothing out of it and don't cost anyone anything significant. People shoot Technetium moons because you get vast sums of money, and CSAA's because you inflict tens of billions of ISK of suffering. People don’t shoot the stupid things that have similar EHP but only cost the defender a pittance.

Piracy and conflict thrive on commerce: the best piracy in Empire is sacking the trade lanes between Jita and Amarr, in Nairja. There are no real streams of commerce in 0.0: there are tiny tributaries as people rat/mine/explore and generate token amounts of minerals, but the commerce stops there. Those items are merely shipped straight to empire, and finished products shipped in. The only stream of commerce that matters in 0.0 is its lifeline to empire. People have, at times, advocated for nerfing this lifeline: nerfing jump freighters to make them easier to kill. The issue is this isn’t a stream of commerce: this is the jugular of 0.0. If the connection to Jita can be severed, the region dies. Nerfing jump freighters may briefly promote conflict as people attempt to interdict shipments and score some expensive, fun kills. Shortly after that, major alliances will abandon any pretense of basing out of their space: the markets for warships will be in the nearest hisec entry point. Goonswarm would no longer have the most vibrant market of 0.0 in VFK; they would have it in EC- (right next to empire). Everyone else would make similar arrangements: it is impossible to source ships in quantity in 0.0, so if your supplies can be interdicted you have no choice but to leave 0.0. As a result, nerfing the jump freighter and attempting to weaken the connection to Jita will not revitalize 0.0 conflict: it will end it.

One solution might be to be to nerf the jump freighter at the same time an industry revamp is put in place. This works in theory, but not in practice. In practice, nerfs are easy but new features are hard, and CCP is perpetually unable to allocate enough coders to get everything they want done done. The result is well known in 0.0: “we’re going to nerf this now, but buff something later to make up for it!”; the nerf then comes, and the buff never arrives. Given that a supply of ships is absolutely vital for 0.0 combat, CCP cannot afford to gamble that they can code the replacement in time. The replacement must go in first, be seen to work, and only then can any nerf to importation be considered.

The answer — as CCP, to their credit, seem to have realized — is a POS revamp. These POS must do two main things: they must allow you to match or exceed empire industry, and they must allow you to spend enough money to build them up in a way that makes it worth it for someone to destroy it. A later article will flesh out why manufacturing is broken in 0.0 and how a POS revamp should fix it.

SovWar: Prettier Women and Shinier Plunder For The Victors

There’s many problems with current sovereignty wars and most are not rooted the sort of industry problem the previous two types of conflict suffer from. However the low-level income problem does contribute to the current malaise regarding sovwar, as does the flawed moon mining structure.

There used to be two reasons to seize a region and move there: it had more Rarity 64 moons (R64's), or it had better mining and ratting. Goonswarm, being stuck in Scalding Pass with Angel rats (the worst rats in the game), was ecstatic to conquer new regions with non-Angel and non-drone rats. Today, ratting might as well not exist and no alliance will care enough about its ratting to conquer a better ratting region. This is exacerbated somewhat through the failed fix to the anomaly nerf (which caused mid-tier anomalies to become the best to farm, negating the need for high true-sec). Mining, of course, no longer even pretends to rely on local asteroids. It’s all about the gravity sites. These are primarily low-level problems best addressed through focusing on “the little guy” and fixing the significant problems in low-level income that have crushed standard ganking and small-gang combat. Once that is fixed, its effects on sov wars will be fixed as well.

Moon mining is also badly flawed. Technetium was a problem for two reasons: one well-known, the other usually missed. Technetium alliances were absurdly rich, necessitating a nerf of the overall value of Technetium. However, the nerf — R32 alchemy — failed to address the second issue: moon distribution.

When the bottleneck was Promethium and Dysprosium, money moons were distributed in a virtually perfect way. Almost every region, even the poorest, had at least one or two enabling a fledgling alliance to begin building in a worthless region like Scalding Pass, home of maybe three P/D moons and outside the sphere of interest of the major alliances. Once that fledgling alliance had gained strength it could try to move up the ranks of regions, conquering slightly more valuable regions and growing in wealth as it grew in strength. Each region had value (some worth ten times as much as others) and as a result there was always a more desirable region beckoning to be conquered.

Today, there are Tech regions, and there is everything else. True, Tech regions are no longer game-breakingly rich, but there’s no real scale of region value. Pure Blind may be worse than Deklein, Tribute worse than Branch, but not in a way that would cause any alliance to want to move. Conquer, maybe — you can always use more Technetium — but not move. And when it comes to non-Tech regions, well... they’re all equally worthless. An alliance can only really hope to move from the ranks of the wretchedly poor to the ranks of the Technetium Lords. There is no stepping stone, no middle ground. There currently is value in Cobalt regions, but once the market settles those will cease being especially valuable.

The solution is to rebalance moons so that the bottleneck is a R64 once again. R64s are not evenly distributed, but they are not regional like R32's and R8's (a region generally only has one type of R8 and R32, while it can have all kinds of R16 or R64 moons). But as CCP apparently intends to move away from moon mining as a point source of income (a serious mistake that eliminates the one remaining financial incentive for a sovwar) they may see fixing this error as not worth the effort. This is a mistake: the old system of R64 distribution created great incentives to fight and created a smooth transition in region value. A new system is likely to suffer from the usual malise: the key elements of the system slip off into SoonTM, either never coming or consuming an inordinate amount of development time.

Conclusion

What 0.0 has been struggling with for years now is having a good reason to fight. Every aspect of combat is hurting because there's just not enough to fight over. A number of industrialists have identified these problems before but they've largely been ignored because of the idea that the money-making side of EVE just isn't that relevant to the rest of the players in 0.0. That's not the case: a more vibrant industrial sector in EVE gives the PVPers far more to attack, plunder and destroy. In future articles, I'll lay out some ideas for fleshing out 0.0 in greater detail, and elaborate on how these make the game better for everyone.