You Spin Me Right Round, Baby Right Round Like a Record, Baby Right Round Round Round

“Just when I thought I was out, they’re pulling me back in,” seems to be a common theme in a blogger’s life. Due to some real life concerns I’ve actually taken a week off from Eve, something that I hope to change after the weekend. That was also supposed to include a hiatus from blogging, excepting an innocuous little role-play post about Eve technology. After reading the latest article on TMC, though, I just can’t resist rolling up my sleeves and commenting.

This article shows only the barest understanding of the state of supercapital warfare in Eve, in fact evincing a level of understanding dwarfed by my own as a player who has never so much as sat in any kind of super. It is riddled with references to a type of capital warfare that either no longer exists or is quickly fading into Eve’s history. It is doing this in order to prop itself up as a part of a spin wave churned to the fore in the wake of a recent battle in Saranen with the aim of keeping Goon spirits from waning. So first, I’ll talk a bit about the meat of things concerning super warfare, and then I’ll show you how the article is trying to spin you like tops, Goonies.

First, the article is replete with references to B-R and Asakai, trying to set up some kind of a “he who loses supers loses the war due to waning spirit” kind of a situation, talking about how a future battle of B-R where one side wins, (maybe the Imperium?) could totally change the course of the war. He neglects to mention that HoneyBadger lived far longer than Asakai and N3/PL lived far longer than B-R. Neither battle actually had the effect that he predicts from a future battle of the sort. He makes much ado that Fozziesov doesn’t have much to do with Titans, claiming that such battles will be rare and too costly, and for right now we just have to accept that two mighty supercap powers won’t go toe to toe, although they are probably of equal strength.

This is just comical. Let me explain a few things. To paraphrase the one intelligent thing this guys says: ‘structures might have something to do with something.’ The war you see right now is legacy war with a twist. Station games with Titans. Stations are going away. Future wars will be fought over moon goo and Fortizars. For reasons you will see, no Keepstar is going to be destroyed in K-space unless it was anchored by a moron in the first place. At any rate, camping a power in with an enormous supercap group is a result of two things. The first is that stations exist, and the second is that Titans are now specifically designed to slaughter large subcap fleets as a part of their target package. The phenomenon of a hundred billion ISK ship that can only fight like a 3 billion ISK ship (dreadnought), except for being able to do 3 million points of damage to a single ship is gone. Bye.

As of right now, the primary target of supercapital ships is actually a system of structures that have only begun to be implemented. The secondary target of supercapital ships is actually a hive of subcapitals. Shooting other capitals and supercapitals is actually a tertiary target for these ships to be employed against in the event of escalations.

If I haven’t said it before, the sov system is about ratting ticks. That’s pretty much it. We already see alliances not giving a hoot about what DOTLAN looks like. Once outposts are gone, Ihubs will be it. So this guy’s comment that supercap battles will be rare because the sov system doesn’t need them is just silly. We are just biding our time.

How will things look? Well, the players love to undock when they are going to win. CCP loves attrition. Players love to find some little system they can game such as killboard spying, use of local, or DSCAN tools to get a decisive edge that will cause them to surely win or avoid the fight. CCP loves the fog of war. They’ve already talked about delayed local. We had to scream until they saved fleet warping. Off grid alt boosters are on the chopping block.

Supercapital battles will generally be multicompositional battles where supers play a part, usually in a structure fight, as part of an escalation. With damage mitigation, a small number of ships can tear down a structure, but since that structure is going to be shooting back and have the ability to tear down your fleet, you will need to bring extras in order to actually take it down, and the tactics developed by the attackers will require defenders to actually have more than just their structure on field to be victorious.

This will create an attrition scenario in which supercapitals will be an escalation option available to either side. In the case of a Keepstar, the defender will be able to just undock as many supers as he needs, each one able to rip an entire subcap fleet to pieces. An attacker will need his own supers to keep pace with that. Now chances are, nobody is going to risk sending supers against a Keepstar with that kind of escalation capability. However, with the Fortizar, where defenders as well as attackers will face limitations on their ability to infiltrate the field with apex weaponry, things could get dicey. Asakai or B-R dicey? No. But situations will arise where parties will be willing to commit x resources to achieve an objective. Battles will be measured in lots of subcap losses with the possibility of small or large capital losses and with the further possibility of the loss of this or that super or Titan.

That’s what things are going to look like, folks. The picture will become clearer after the drilling platforms come out. I expect they will come out in various sizes and with various capabilities, and that platform on your dyspro moon might just tempt someone to drop supers on it or at least a lot of dreads supported by supers.

The article is woefully ignorant of all this and pretends that the present and future will consist of the same world that we have known for years of supers normally only being dropped in huge masses completely obliterating their targets or, by some freak accident, are dropped on another unimaginably large super force. Given this false future landscape, the author is drawing up an illusory comparison to WWI in order to con the readers into thinking that the MBC and CFC have a parity that we are never going to see because it’s just too risky, but don’t worry, the CFC is just as strong.

Along with this, you see laughable we-didn’t-want-that-anyways such as the statement that lone supers getting picked off is an acceptable risk for the CFC. Frankly, we’ve been well inculcated that the MBC can kill them with impunity, and with a minimal risk to killing them. The real deal is that if the CFC uses supers, they will get annihilated. The MBC doesn’t have this problem. So let’s not eat the hogwash of “don’t leave us guys, we still have our supers! That we won’t use because the risk is to great for both us and the MBC! It’s like WWI where our using our possibly giant super fleet that might not be camped into MBC POSes just doesn’t help with Fozziesov in a fight with MBC supers who would assume the same risk!”

Joseph Goebbels and Muhammed Saeed al-Sahaf couldn’t get together and make this stuff up. Bravo Goons!

Eve Technology

So it’s been a while since I have written anything, and my real life is getting haywire. I haven’t really done anything in Eve since before the weekend and may go light for just a little bit, so I figured I’d write a post that diverges from the flavor of the recent ones I’ve been writing. Last week in Eve I ended up talking to some Hordlings about the lore of the technology in Eve, particularly the entosis idea. In that conversation, a few people, veterans by Horde standards, commented that they’d actually never thought about the lore behind entosis before. Following that conversation, my thoughts were drawn to a comment that Mox Nix made in his rather angry post explaining why he was quitting Eve. In that post, he says, “I expected futuristic technology based on real science, physics and realistic, believable science fiction. Not a horribly mismatched collection of unrealistic, unbelievable technology with absurd capabilities, equally absurd limitations, contrived rules and bandaid ‘fixes’ all cobbled together into one gigantic immersion killing mess.” I take issue with this statement, as I find the technological landscape of Eve Online to be quite artful and well-thought out.

Now when talking about Eve’s technology, we have to talk a little bit about Eve’s presentation. There are certain things in Eve that we are expected to take as representational. For instance, we don’t really consider CONCORD’s budget and how it affords to pay out to capsuleers. We just accept that the Guristas are invading, and don’t think about how they constantly recruit people to be constantly slaughtered by capsuleer privateers in the service of CONCORD. Also, we see that as players we install upgrades to make more Guristas attack a system. However, we say that it represents an upgrade we install because more Guristas have started to attack. We just accept that New Eden is a galaxy with only 7,000 stars in it. Eve has a certain balance that is representational, that we look at one step removed. That being said, the conceptual art created via Eve’s systems and technology is actually quite elegant.

So from there, let’s look at the historical influences on Eve’s technology. The latter half of the 20th century is generally labelled by historians as the Space Age. This is the era of both Dune and Star Wars, Isaac Asimov, and the great hard science fiction novelists of old. The central technologies of this science fiction are interstellar travel, spaceships, and laser guns. Now around 1990 with the creation of the internet, and certainly by 2007 with the creation of the smartphone, mankind entered the Communication Age, where information and surveillance are everywhere. Modern science fiction tends to concentrate on advances in this area. In between these ages, in the 80s, there was a genre created by a guy named William Gibson with his story Johnny Mnemonic and Neuromancer novels called “cyberpunk.” The movie Bladerunner was a part of this genre, and while outer space was often a factor, the theme was the dehumanization of humanity through technology and unfettered capitalism. The gadgets of this genre were cybernetics and virtual reality, which are still the mainstay of modern science fiction. So we have a science fiction environment developed over the last 75 years of spaceships, virtual reality, cybernetics, cloning, etc. Eve actually combines a lot of these archetypes.

Concerning Eve’s lore, for those who don’t know, New Eden was populated by human explorers from Earth in a series of distant, small, remote outposts and colonies, which ended up for some reason being isolated from each other when the Eve Gate wormhole from the Milky Way to New Eden collapsed. Because these colonies were small, think of the little colony in the movie Aliens, all of them ended up regressing back to the stone age except one. Over the course of 30,000 years, the colonies developed into unique societies on different worlds until interstellar travel again became a reality and they began to rediscover each other and form the human empires of the galaxy. That forms the basis of Eve technology: space ships, robots, and laser guns – standard Space Age hard science fiction. However, many of the distinctives of Eve’s technology come from that one colony that has not been climbing back up to the Space Age level of technology for the last 30,000 years, but rather has been moving forward. That colony evolved into what we call the Jovians. The Jovians developed unimaginable levels of genetic and cybernetic technology, to the point that they made themselves something completely beyond human, and actually genetically nonviable. Capsuleer technology, the ability to upload one’s consciousness into a computer and download it into a clone, was actually inspired by Jovian technology utilized by, I believe, the Caldari, generally known to be the most technologically advanced human group.

Further, a group of Jovians tried to escape their genetic and biological troubles by uploading themselves into a virtual reality similar to Neo’s Matrix called The Construct that is somewhere in the deepest, completely unknown reaches of wormhole space. These Jovians are called the Sleepers and have their own culture, being no longer really Jovians but something unique to themselves. Now lately in New Eden, we have seen these beings called the Drifters, who appeared shortly after the decloaking of the Jovian observatories and the appearance of the Circadian Seekers. We don’t exactly know what is going on between the Jovians and the Sleepers as to why this stuff is happening, but the Drifters are these semi viable biological entities that use cybernetic implants to stay alive, at least for a while. My guess is that they are Sleepers that are trying to get back into bodies somehow, if even only for a little while, in order to be able to affect things in our universe and somehow interact with these Jovian observatories and Circadian Seekers.

Now with the appearance of the Jovian observatories, Circadian Seekers, and Drifters, the human empires perceived new threats and began to advance technology reverse engineered from these new sources. One of them was this new shielding technology that the Amarr Empire developed from captured Drifter tech. This shielding is basically the foundation of the entosis system. The shields make that which is shielded, stations (for the time being), iHubs, and Territorial Control Units, completely impervious to harm. They have the ability to react to and counter hostile input with an accuracy so astounding that no computer that we can comprehend could be able to manage.

This is because the computers that manage these shields are not composed of transistors or integrated circuits or the binary technology that we in the real world know of. The “chips” of the “computers” that govern this shielding are actually sentient consciousness. Human souls power them. You know, like the unconscious mind that remembers everything you have ever experienced or whatever – actual perfect, unlimited computation. With capsuleer technology allowing humans to merge their consciousness with machines already being available, capsuleers in the vicinity of these shielded items (iHubs, TCUs, etc) integrate their unconscious minds with the defense networks of the shields. Therefore, the more capsuleers around doing more stuff and providing more “thought power” to a defense net, the harder they are to “hack”. This is the root of the Activity Defense Multiplier concept.

Of course it stands that the only way these networks can be hacked is through the merging of consciousness with the network in order to introduce soul-powered viruses into it, ergo the entosis module and the entosis hacker. Further, knowing that Drifters and Sleepers are pretty good at merging their minds with technology, the defense networks have a failsafe in order to facilitate the only advantage over these guys that we have: actual bodies in actual places, flying around all over the place. Whenever a defense network is cybernetically  hacked to a certain degree, the network jump drive launches its processing power to various points in space light years away, so if any entity capable of hacking a defense network gets through to a certain point, they will then have to get in ships and get themselves to these “nodes” and hack them too. That should stop the Drifters, who are few in number and can only be in a few places and for a short time, right?

Well as fate would have it, this technology that was designed to protect human empires from Drifters and Circadian Seekers and a possible Jovian invasion quickly made its way to us psychopathic rogue capsuleers and our empires out in null security space. Fozziesov has been born. So what we see from this is that Eve’s technology is based on a foundation of 20th century space age hard science fiction supplemented with concepts of virtual reality, cybernetics, and advanced bioengineering that have appeared in more recent genres. Yes, we have to step back sometimes and see it as a representative system that plays out a certain way in the game mechanics for the game to work. However, it is based on real thinking about diverse science fiction ideas. Eve is certainly not “bandaid ‘fixes’ all cobbled together into one gigantic immersion killing mess.” It’s quite immersive and very advanced. Microchips are small time in our universe, where computers are made out of human consciousness.

I know some of the lore in this post is old hat for a lot of the Eve lore buffs. I do hope that I am corrected if I have made any mistakes of fact. I do hope, however, that this post serves to show that a fairly advanced and truly faithful science fiction has been brought into our game to drive the systems that allow us to have fun. Hopefully some of my newbean friends learn something here.

Just Awful

Among Mittens’ diatribes against Eve players stand his comments that Goon forums are superior to the Reddit. I am no fan of the Reddit. However, the Something Awful forums are by no means superior to the Reddit, and in my opinion are substantially worse.

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This image is difficult to read. Click here for an Imgur that is easier to make out.

BB74: The Most Important Reveal at Fanfest Was……

This post from the Nosy Gamer.

I didn’t go to Fanfest this year, nor have I ever been, nor will I probably ever go. I am considering going to Eve Vegas, as it’s not too far from me, but travel to Iceland is probably a bit too much. Normally, though, I watch all the streams and videos of Fanfest and its various keynotes. I didn’t do that this year, as I got the feeling that there were a lot of presentations about things that we knew the broad strokes about, and the details would come out as they became relevant. It seemed that a lot was accomplished at this year’s Fanfest in the roundtable discussions, and I am reading about some of those in various places. One of the roundtables was attended by Noisy, and was described in the blog post that I linked above. It was quite interesting to me, not only for the reasons that he talked about, but because I had also read this article.

These two sources gave me an idea of what we can expect from the future of warfare in Eve Online. Recently on an episode of the Meta Show, Mittens claimed exuberantly that because Lenny was responsible for his travails, the MBC did not have an inexhaustible war chest, so his tactic of wearing out the MBC would be successful. Now it would seem that Lenny makes hundreds of billions of ISK per month as an IWI banker in addition to whatever he makes doing other stuff in Eve. There are a lot of IWI bankers. 12 of them got banned. According to Noisy, those 12 should have been banned, but were let off the hook for some reason. I would wager that some sort of deal was struck in which the offending bankers were allowed back into the game if they promised not to RMT (and be subjected to close scrutiny), but rather actually spend their ISK in New Eden.

Now when you can buy a couple of Titans a month in Eve, there really isn’t much left to spend your money on. Eep openly mocked this fact by spending $30,000 worth of ISK on skill injectors to inject every skill in the game to level 5. And when you’re doing that, you really don’t have anything in New Eden that you can get excited about buying. Except Pandemic Legion. Except the MoneyBadgers. Yeah, I suppose the IWI crew could build themselves a Palatine Keepstar, but after that, what’s next? The mega rich of Eve need something they can spend their money on month to month. The only thing that really fits the bill is a coalition.

Now I really don’t know what the deal is with the MBC. I joined Horde to fight the Goons, and I hope we keep doing so. However, I’m quite liking it, and I doubt I’d leave if we stopped. In my last post I actually advocated a looser MBC that engaged in blueshooting (of blues who aren’t really blues, of course) in order to diversify content. Truly, though, the front is fairly unified. PL of course came to the aid of my alliance over the last couple of days, but so did NC., which is never a guarantee (although could be deemed likely due to their friendship with PL). However, Darkness. also turned up for fighting. The MBC could be a bit tighter than a lot of people expect, though I for one don’t know the details.

Frankly, the game plan of the MBC isn’t really talked about or known clearly. If, however, the ultra rich of Eve, particularly the IWI crew, continue to be involved and continue to spend their money on the MBC, Mittens could find himself facing an enemy that looks fractious and disengaged at one moment, then suddenly reforms with newfound dedication, unity, and Goon hate seemingly spawned out of nowhere for some unknown reason (read: money).

Sure, PL and PH could be dispersed, only to be replaced by some other group that the IWI crew have paid to play entosis in Fade and Pure Blind. Mittens really won’t win with his plan to wear down Horde. His best chance at winning is to get IWI off his rear, and preferably paying his allies. It seems there are a lot of people that are astoundingly rich in ISK, and CCP is directing them to pay people to fight. When a few of these people get together with a mind to accomplish something, they can apparently shake things up a bit. The old Leonard Cohen lyric comes to mind: I’ve seen the future, and it is murder. An even older line from Paul of Tarsus comes off the tongue as well: the love of money is the root of all evil.

Gevlon Goblin quit the game because he thought broker fees and a Palatine Keepstar were going to create an unassailable bloc, and that ruined the game for him. Well, apparently that group has already been here for a while: I Want ISK. Whoever runs New Jita, if there ends up being one, will just be another Lenny or another Eep Eep. So the good news is that Gevlon’s doomsday has already come and we’ve still been enjoying the game. That’s why I backed off of my initial terror pertaining to the increase of broker fees, which still may come. The bad news, though, is that we are only just now learning who New Eden’s apex predators are.

Steady State Operations

The war is over. The war has just begun. There are a few things that I want to touch on with this post. To some degree I’ll talk a bit about what has happened, but here I’d like to talk mainly about the road ahead in terms of the war against the Goons and the future of the MoneyBadgers. Apparently, the Goons do want that space anyway, and there are some things we can expect, and some things we should think about.

So the Goons lost. They’ll say they didn’t, but they did. They made a lot of bad decisions. By actually committing to a defense they could have kept morale higher, even while losing, and would have avoided a lot of what they are doing now. Their choice to become NPC trash and attack from lowsec was not really borne out of a rational approach of how to tackle the war, but rather they were just tired of defending. They will say, though, that they have not yet begun, or are just now beginning. That much, at least, is true. They are climbing up Pure Blind towards their home. As they do so, they are taking space, and that space will have to be defended, at least to a degree. They are still going to have to deal with being hell camped, just as yesterday’s battle of O1Y where they were camped into a POS has shown.

They are still going to lose systems, as Horde has shown by reclaiming systems Goons had recently taken. There is no way out of the whackamole, and the order of march in Fozziesov is about determining which moles you can actually whack. As Citadels hit the game and new options for projecting and deploying become available, both sides will have to think outside of the box concerning conquering space and what their battle objectives should look like. This sounds like an idea for a future blog post, but suffice it to say that here we are in uncharted territory, and there will be a lot of fun to be had in terms of innovating and rethinking how we wage war.

Another thing that we should also be rethinking is our concept of a coalition. The MBC has already taken steps along this path by calling itself a coalition, even though parties often don’t even bother to set themselves blue, and various groups in the coalition are driven by different motives, cash and Goon hate being chief among them. As a line member in Horde, I can’t say I really know what my alliance’s long term plans are. There is a lot of taking things as they go, I imagine. This fact is used by the Goons in their spin. They want to ‘break’ the coalition, and some of our members seem to be thinking in terms of ‘we have to stand unified in order to not be broken.’

I’d actually like to take issue with this outmoded concept of a coalition because if it prevails, then the MBC is as vulnerable to a failscade as the CFC. If there is disunity, the MBC can be perceived as vulnerable, and if there are losses, elements of the MBC, whether players or corps or alliances, can be tempted to jump ship. However, as mentioned above, the MBC has a number of motives. Cash, content, and Goon hate are certainly there, but there is also a strong belief among many MBC parties that the blue donut is bad for the game. If the MBC replaces the CFC blue north with the MBC blue north, the MBC has actually lost one of its objectives.

Because I do not want a blue donut in the north, and because Fozziesov includes an element of hell war that the Goons are bent on inflicting upon themselves and others, I’d like to throw some thoughts out there about the war and the MBC. Now apparently, privately, various Goon FCs and Mittens himself are going around calling people crying and saying that they aren’t having any fun and we need to be nice to them, give them gudfights, and otherwise be buddy buddy with them after we have had to deal with the brunt of them being out to ruin our game for years. In my opinion this should be treated as more metagaming. Further, there has been no public change in policy. Above board, they meant to lose, and their approach to winning is just to make everybody miserable. I’d personally like to oblige them. No gudfights for Goons. No quarter. That’s what they’ve always dished out. Let’s return the favor.

We do, however, enjoy breaks from the whackamole. They aren’t going to form for any meaningful fight anyway. In Horde, our guys had great fun with TEST the other day. Everybody was bored, so we blew each other up. Darkness and TEST are running around in our space constantly. I don’t really so much mind. From what I have seen from Horde, we do a better job of sticking to the NRDS policy than our neighbors, and I actually wouldn’t mind changing that. If there’s anything I don’t like about Darkness and TEST bugging around in our space it’s that we aren’t bugging around in theirs. It would be nice if Horde’s weekly schedule involved some small scale entosis operations going on constantly, some large scale entosis operations going on weekly, but then some good old fashioned camping and roaming in there as well so that this war involves some actual fighting.

I’d like to liken the north to the state of feudal Japan during the Chinese Yuan dynasty. At that time, every lord in Japan was fighting against every other constantly in their own version of historical real life forever war. But when the Chinese showed up to invade, they all got together and repelled them. As soon as the invasion was blunted, they went straight back to fighting each other as before. And when the Chinese invaded again, the same hing happened. I’d like to see the MBC evolve into something like that: when you’ve got a big fight coming up, just bat phone your enemies.

Naturally there are some difficulties that will be involved with this. Do we take each other’s moons? What exactly is the MBC’s objective? How do we define an awox? Some of these things should actually be discussed among alliance leaders. Some things should just evolve naturally as unspoken understandings. I can’t really ramble on about all this sort of stuff. I can only say that leaders in the MBC should have some sort of commitment to sticking together on some level, but should always be wary of creating a new blue donut.

I’d like to end the post with just a couple of things on the table. Distinguish between war and fighting. Make sure you have both. Don’t try to make the war against the Goons fun. Don’t let them have that. They say they aren’t interested in it anyway. Fighting in Eve is fun. Make sure you have that. If we make the MBC like the CFC there won’t be any targets to have fun with, there will be only Goons.

The Goonhammer

I’ve just logged in from the marathon entosis operation last night, and checking DOTLAN I see that Deklein is in flames. I am particularly delighted to see that the RFY-Q8 constellation (the Testagram) is under Darkness. control, which was Horde’s primary mission. Our boys done well. It will be a night to remember. Also, as I logged in I see a large amount of red in O1Y as per usual. I haven’t yet taken time to decide what I will do in game this afternoon or what exactly is going on in our space, but just seeing all the red has brought me to where I’d like to comment on the Goons’ campaign against Horde.

First, to all the Goons out there, I just wanted to let you know that this campaign is yet another bad idea from your inept Space Hitler. Let’s take a look at this from a couple of angles. First, it’s a part of your alliance’s plan to deny fun to your enemies. However, it’s not fun for you either. Second, let’s look at the psychological impact. A long time ago a Bombers Bar FC made a comment to me about that group’s constant forays into Provibloc. He said, “it’s like kicking babies in the teeth – when you win, you don’t feel like you accomplished anything worthwhile, and on the rare occasion when you lose, it just makes you feel pathetic.” All this campaign is doing is showing you that your alliance can beat Horde. And when you don’t beat Horde, it shows how pathetic you are. Third, let’s look at op success and failure. Let’s say it works and Horde drops from being a 7,000 pilot alliance to a 5,000 pilot alliance. What exactly have you won? You still have a huge alliance that isn’t really central to MBC operations beyond being a gaggle of noobs hanging out as a buffer and providing swarms of entosis Slashers when needed. Let’s say though that it doesn’t work, and our numbers don’t decrease. You are wasting time fighting Horde while TEST and NC. and PL and Darkness. etc. ruin you.

Don’t believe the hype, Goonswarm. You’ve been taught that harvesting tears is the zenith of the game. You’ll get shown streams of this or that noob quitting Eve and getting frustrated, but you won’t be shown the thousands more who you are egging on to be your next generation of enemies. You’d best be served by fighting those who always have and always will hate you rather than make enemies out of the majority of new players joining the game who are fighting against you out of a sportsman’s competition rather than the seething hatred that you have earned for yourself from the likes of TEST and others.

Don’t look at a video of one noob crying and giggle to yourself that you are winning. You are wasting your time and effort pursuing a goal that will not accomplish anything for you strategically. Horde will remain. Horde will be large. 5,000, 7,000, or 10,000 doesn’t really matter. Horde is doing its job planting itself in Fade and will continue to do so, no matter if we shrink a bit, stay the same size, or grow. Mittens talks about how new players don’t understand hell war, but I will have you know that new players are going to be more willing to find out what it’s like than older players looking for the most efficient way to make ISK AFK. When you look at what you are doing, look at real numbers.

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So how’s camping O1Y working out for you? You’ve long loved Mittens because he is such a scoundrel and conman. Only now, you are his mark. You are the ones being conned, spending your days in O1Y while your space is taken away. I will end this paragraph with the same sentence I started the previous one with. Don’t believe the hype, Goonswarm.

I’ll end this post with some notes to my fellow hordelings. Mittens is trying to hang on as long as he can by trumping up rhetoric concerning a successful campaign against an Eve newbie group. The community’s reaction has been to comment that Goons are trying to prove they can beat Horde, which is nothing impressive. The Goons are also trying to preach to Horde that we are being abused by our seniors and being used as meat shields. Well, there is no abuse about it. We are the meat shields. That is our baseline mission. It is a mission to be proud of.

When I was in the Army, the most glorified image to be found was not the highly trained special ops soldier or the super genius intelligence collector, but the infantryman of the line. We all knew that the territory is just not under control unless there are boots on the ground, and that the infantryman was the back that bears the load. That’s what you are. In addition to being the buffer, to being the distraction, we do get a great number of opportunities to accomplish a lot more than anyone ever expected we would. There is no shame in being the rock bottom in the war machine, but rather it is the position of greatest honor. Take comfort in that.

After saying that, though, I do realize that Eve is a game of great proportions. There is a learning curve, real consequential loss, and there are ruthless enemies. Some of you may have come into Horde without clear expectations and are finding that the gameplay is not what you’d like. Now I think most of you are actually impressed with the scope of this game and this war and are excited to pay the price of victory. But for those who aren’t, don’t quit Eve. There are other places to go and things to do.

However, if you do go somewhere else, I encourage you not to run to highsec and get involved with any random corp that you run across. Some are good, but most are bad. I also encourage you not to take shelter in just any given alliance out there. Frustrations will grow high. Despite being told by all these guys that you don’t need skill points, you will be surrounded by people who have them, and you’ll constantly be tempted to do things the same way they do. You won’t be able to. It will be discouraging.

Frankly, the best place for a newbie in Eve is in a newbie group. I’d recommend the Brave Collective as an option. I think I can say this without irking Horde leadership because from what I have seen, the overwhelming majority of our players are excited by the challenges we are facing. But for that rare person who is thinking of quitting Eve or joining a veteran alliance, Brave is a better option. Horde has inherited the lighter side of our personality from them. We’ve taken Brave memes like “stay classy” and “fun per hour” and condensed them into “don’t be a dick.” They don’t exactly have the strong meritocracy and content creator leader idea that we’ve inherited from our PL buddies, and they aren’t generally as well run as we are, being more bureaucratic. However, when it comes to training noobs they have it pretty well down pat, and they do go out and have a lot of fun. A lot of our leaders and members started out in Brave, and while I think we’d all say that we have put together the best newbie group in the game, Brave is a good option for those who can’t figure out how to make it work in Horde.

Obviously, DON’T join KarmaFleet. We just took over their main staging. They are in retreat with the rest of the Imperium and are lead by the same ridiculous leadership that took the bait and are punching at Horde while their empire crumbles. They are basically a lowsec corp at this point. Great things are not in their future.

But anyway, I think I’ve spent a lot of time on those to those who don’t have the stomach for life in Horde, when such types are exceedingly rare. I’d meant for this post to be a message to Goons and to the average Horde member who is pumped up to fight but may be confused by propaganda about our friends and leaders abusing us and all. Nothing could be further from the truth. We are the bait and the buffer, a very important role that everyone respects, and quite obviously we’ve done A LOT more than just being the bait and buffer. So I’ll just end with one more sentence, again to the Goons. Grow up and get a war plan that works, such as getting new leadership.

A Beautiful Mind

I just saw the Meta Show today with CrassKitty as the guest. She is a new Eve player and streamer who has apparently been interviewing various Eve famous people, alliance leaders, and whatnot. During this episode, she didn’t get to ask but maybe a question or two, and conversely, she was asked a few questions at various points during the show but otherwise didn’t really have much to do with the episode at all. Also Laz, made a comment or two during the show, but for the vast majority of the episode he basically stared at his feet or into space. This particular show was pretty much a non-stop stream of conscious mental ejaculation from Mittens. Now Goonfolk are apparently wrecked if they participate in the real world war of words concerning the things that bee happenin’ up north, so this was actually pretty close to my first full-scale exposure to what the big goon is trying to say. Honestly, I was shocked. I was also provided with a wealth of psychological information about their fearful leader. I’d like to impart that information.

First, a little supporting data. A narcissist is in many ways a normal human where psychological processes develop to an unhealthy degree. Technically narcissism is a form of neurosis, that category of disorders involving extremes of degree, as opposed to psychosis, which centers upon detachment from reality, although in the case of the Mittens we can see a lot of detachment from reality. Essentially what Narcissism is, is a failure to compensate for weakness. We all have weaknesses, and we all compensate for them. The toughest SPECOPS soldiers are those who feel an extreme need to be able to kill anyone they see, as they have a need to be seen as strong, and to be able to protect themselves and others, who they are afraid are in danger.

This may seem an unflattering characterization of our greatest heroes and protectors, but I am just trying to illustrate how our weaknesses drive our strengths. The most social people are those who are afraid of being alone, the the most charitable people are those who are afraid of being seen as lacking character, the most powerful people are those who are afraid they are too weak, etc. It’s just psychology. In the case of a narcissist, though, the person has a very extreme level of self-hatred, of feeling unlovable, and very strong insecurities that they feel they need to hide and compensate for to a massive degree. They create a false self that has no flaws, always succeeds, can do anything, has done everything, etc. They must reassure themselves that those around them believe this false self to be true. This need becomes so strong that narcissists really don’t see other people as people. They don’t bond with them empathically.

The term for those around the narcissist is actually not a human term at all, but a “narcissistic supply source.” When you meet this guy who has been to every country in the world and done everything there is to do in life and succeeded in every way one can in life, you may be tempted to really like this guy. You become a supply source for his narcissism. You feed him the self-esteem that he doesn’t really have by buying his story. That’s really what you are to him. Assurance that he is okay. However, sooner or later you are going to find out that he hasn’t really been everywhere and done everything, and he is not really invincible. Probably because you are catching wind of the lies you are being told about going to that prestigious college in Serbia that burned down and can’t provide  transcripts or whatever. When the narcissist becomes afraid that you’re not buying his story, he turns on you. You will have a strong enemy who will do and say anything to bring you down. That’s where we seem to be on the Metashow today.

As I watched, I honestly wondered if Mittens were on drugs. Laz was quite relaxed. CrassKitty, the newbean, was pretty chill. But not old Alex. He just couldn’t stop ranting. Now I’ve always been one who believed that salt adds flavor, have written some inflammatory stuff myself, and have always loved Eve because the opportunity to really psychologically invest in things that happen in the game. I’m a bit of an “Eve is real” guy. But I really started to stress out watching Mittens go on and on today. He didn’t seem stable, and I wanted to take him by the hand and tell him to calm down, this is a game we’re talking about here.

The guy seems to be taking /r/Eve way too seriously. He commented several times that everybody thought he was evil no matter what he says, and proceeded to lay absolutely thick condemnation upon everybody not directly behind him. I take it he never plans on being friends with Gorski Carr or DurrHurrHurr, and he made several comments about his foes being horrible people. At the same time, he devoted quite a bit of time to talking about how great Eve was because you can scam people and prided his alliance on teaching people how to scam. It seems to him that opposing him in a war, and people actually plotting in a clandestine way about ways to defeat him, is a wholly morally unacceptable position, but scamming and being a space Hitler is just great. I dunno, in my mind, doing dirty against a war opponent is morally higher ground than just scamming any innocent sucker.

There was an incredible lack of consistency in his vitriol. Again, everyone against him was pure evil because they plotted against him, and he is perfect, despite his being evil, which really isn’t evil, or some such nonsense. His rhetoric was inconsistent. His memes, Band of Backstabbers and the like, indicate an approach of taking moral high ground, but minutes later he is talking about scamming being the highpoint of Eve. Why should we all hate Co2 for backstabbing him (if we grant him his wish of seeing them as backstabbing him rather than just seeing the light) if according to his ideal of Eve, they did a great thing by backstabbing him? He, after all, rose to prominence by backstabbing BoB? I mean if you’re going to be a space Hitler, if you’re going to build a false self of being Eve’s ultimate backstabber, what’s with the whole Band of Backstabbers Co2 is evil for their betrayal stuff?

You could see the fragile psychology holding itself together by the insistence on terminology. “We’re not going to buy into their frame,” he says. Mittens would whelp a hundred Titans before he lets anyone call this war World War Bee.

Finally, there was the ultimate contradiction of distain for new players who won’t have the resolve to fight a defensive war, while Goonswarm is the original noobie alliance who loves the new player. The eve player base is immature and base, while he is apparently of an older, more civilized generation. Of course the whole show was him ranting nonstop like some kind of a foul-mouthed fourth grader, talking as much trash as he can about everybody.

None of this would inspire confidence in me if I were a Goon. This guy is not playing a game. It’s his livelihood. His livelihood depends on everybody buying the false self that the Imperium is unbeatable. His logos and videos don’t make sense if all 20,000 of his people are crammed into Saranen. People are walking on him, not believing the false self anymore. So he has to ratchet things up. He has to trash people as morally repugnant and uncivilized demons for attacking him – in a game of space pixels where groups are supposed to attack each other. In the end, he was exuberantly insisting, ‘I was right! The conspiracy I said was happening was happening! See! I’m not a maniac! Everybody is out to get me!” Like no shit, moron, you’re at war. You just come off like an unhinged maniac.

My advice, Mittens, is to tone it down. You’re actually letting on that deep down inside you know your gig is falling apart. And the way you’re playing it is not inspiring. Take a Xanax. Or a Rufie. It will make the date rape so much more pleasurable for everybody. Take it from a PTSD vet. If this kind of stuff goes on for too long you won’t ever be able to get back to normal. You might even have to get a real job.