Blog Banter 32 – EVE is all about risk

This month’s Blog Banter comes from Drackarn of Sand, Cider and Spaceships. He has foolishly chosen to poke the hornet’s nest that is the non-consensual PvP debate. Whilst you read his question, I’ll be finding a safe place to hide.

“A quick view of the Eve Online forums can always find someone complaining about being suicide ganked, whining about some scam they fell for or other such tears. With the Goons’ Ice Interdiction claiming a vast amount of mining ships, there were calls for an “opt out of PvP” option. 

Should this happen? Should people be able to opt-out of PvP in Eve Online. Should CONCORD prevent crime rather than just handing out justice after the event? Or do the hi-sec population already have too much protection from the scum and villainy that inhabits the game?”

Oh boy, this is a fun one!

I hold that there are two major types of player in EVE – those that learn from their mistakes and those who refuse to accept said mistakes. The former suit the game well – adapting and adjusting their playstyles to whatever region of space they live in. The latter whine and bitch when their 8bil-cargo Iteron gets suicide ganked outside Jita 4-4.

It’s the latter who seem to advocate a “removal” of PvP in high-security space. Why? What possible good could come from removing PvP?

Let’s back up a bit. What constitutes PvP? Combat? Markets? Even mining depletes a resource another pilot could claim, so that could be considered PvP too. Removal of all those results in… nothing. I wouldn’t call EVE a “game” at that point. There’d be no spice.

So let’s change the definition of “PvP” into ship combat only, which seems to be the area where people get all mad.

EVE fields a risk/reward scheme throughout the game (with the possible exception of Incursions, trolo). If you take want those big rewards – taking space, getting expensive mods, making billions from trading, defeating whole fleets etc. – then you have to take big risks – Organising alliances, running dangerous sites, investing billions to start trading etc. Non-Consensual combat in Highsec is the risk to the reward of being able to run missions/mine/build/haul without being attacked at every gate. If you want to carry all your loot round cheaply, you are damn well going to take a risk in doing so.

Remove this risk counter. Remove the ninja looting, the can flipping, the suicide ganks. What are we left with? War dec mechanics? Those are laughably easy to exploit.

So you now have a Highsec without ship combat. What happens now? You’ve essentially just turned Highsec into a single player game, where your actions do not have consequences. What’s to stop everyone flooding into Highsec where they are now completely safe? EVE would go haywire. All because some idiot decided that because he didn’t want to take a risk for his reward. Some dumbass doesn’t like people “interfering with his playstyle” yet is perfectly happy to effect everyone else’s playstyle by wanting a removal of PvP.

Then, of course, there’s CONCORD. CONCORD is, as we all know, punishment – not protection. Those wanting a removal of PvP often ask for CONCORD to protect instead.  However, CONCORD is currently the risk factor for the “reward” of criminal activity in Highsec (along with loot drop rates, I guess). Change CONCORD and you’ve removed the risk part of that activity too. You’ve now fundamentally altered another aspect of gameplay. Of course, if you remove PvP then this gameplay is already dead, making this irrelevant, but it’s important to consider.

EVE is nothing without risk. Removal of non-consensual combat removes that risk, and then EVE isn’t EVE. One of its unique selling points is gone. Part of what makes EVE unique is out the window, just like that.

All because someone refused to accept the risk.

If you cannot accept the risk for your rewards, in a game that revolves around risk, I have but one image to link.

To be honest, I was just looking for a reason to link this

Posted on January 18, 2012, in Blog Banter and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 6 Comments.

  1. You approached it from almost the same point of view as I did, but since I was both on the receiving end of mining barge ganks and on the other side as well, I see potential room for improvement in the resource gathering i.e. allow non-barge ships harvest ice. Less reward (less ice mined per cycle) but more safety (mining BS can be well-tanked).\

    But remove PvP from high sec? After my cold corpse.

  2. Once undocked, high-sec practically is a single-player game by default in my experience. You have to try really hard to interact with other players in a meaningful way. Over the years I’ve missioned and mined and not once had an encounter with a ninja. I’d like to see more player-on-player conflict in high-sec, even if it is interaction of a non-fatal nature.

  3. Perhaps a better solution is a game time protection status…unless you engage in combat, join a corp at war or faction warfare….if your toon is X days young you become immune to targetting.

    I think your biggest complaints stem from new toons getting ganked before they can learn anything and the economy of eve is not balanced enough to support them. So yes, they can learn from a mistake…but become disenchanted because they have nothing left after one run in in their badger off Jita 4-4.

    It’s not a perfect idea..but that is ultimately the problem..the hi sec ganking is a result of an imperfect system that is not at all balanced. I think those screaming at people who want pvp out of hi sec are mostly afraid to go where pvp is expected…Low and Null, many of the common ganking fleets in the pipes near jita seem to include lots of people that failed in 0.0 and ran back to the safety of hi sec….victumized and unable to adapt they turn into predators of the weak themselves…not really pvp tbh 😉

  1. Pingback: BB32: Putting the “Sensual” in “Non-consensual” « Finders & Keepers

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