Last night saw one of the biggest EVE Live Events in history. I was actually at work and missed most of the event, but I’ve collected as much information as I could find.
For a bit of backstory – according to the EVE lore, the Gallente and Caldari both started in the same home system of Luminaire. Some time before Capsuleers came into play, the Caldari were pushed out of Luminaire in a brutal war with the Gallente. Flash forward to 2008 and the Empyrean Age expansion – The Caldari launch a massive assault on Luminaire (whilst CONCORD were being killed in Yulai). This resulted in a Caldari NPC Leviathan-class Titan above Caldari Prime for the next few years. Millions of Gallente citizens were trapped on the surface of the planet. You can actually get a detailed account of these events in the Empyrean Age book.
Anyway. With the rise of the immortal ground troops (AKA Dust 514) the Gallente forces still on the surface have begun fighting back. In order to quell the fighting, the Titan “Shiigeru” has moved into low orbit over Caldari Prime to provide orbital support. Tensions between Caldari and Gallente, already high, came to a crux in orbit last night.
CONCORD released warnings over entering Luminaire as the ground situation erupted into full-scale hostilies (as the DUST forces battled for both sides). The NPC Titan in Luminaire was replaced by a CCP Actor over Downtime and moved into the low-orbit position. 4 Wyvern-class Supercarriers of the Caldari State also moved into defensive positions around the Titan. Multiple Carriers and Dreadnaughts also reinforced the fleet.
As Luminaire was still a High Security system (1.0), the Capsuleers in orbit could merely swarm round the field as the ships moved closer to the surface. CCP had announced the event start time at 1700, but the system was already capped at one thousand people by 1400. At about 1545, a CONCORD vessel approached the planet surface in an attempt to survey the scale of the ground offensive.
At 16:45, the Gallente navy (all piloted by NPC actors) launched a full-scaled capital offensive against the Caldari forces. A massive fleet of Carriers, Dreadnaughts and a handful of Nyx Supercarriers began the attack.
At 1700, CONCORD declared Luminaire a warzone and made every player ship in Luminaire Suspect. Meaning anyone could shoot anyone. In High-Security Space. What followed was a massive battle lasting hours.
Time Dilation hit 10% almost instantly. The system cap was raised to almost 1800 players, but the slowdown wasinsane. Hundreds of players, unable to get in, sat on the entry stargates – killing every suspect ship who tried to escape the system. Algogille, next door to Luminaire, hit 1000 people alone – nearly all of which on the stargate. Over 700 ships were destroyed even there.
Meanwhile, in Luminaire, the battle was fiercely underway. These images are courtesy of other players.
As the battle raged for an hour, organised Capsuleer forces entered the system. Alliances such as Goonswarm and TEST made their presence known with organised fleets of Maelstroms and Rokhs, but this was nothing compared to the general carnage of the battlefield. At 1800, the Shiigeru was destroyed. The battle continued to rage for a further hour. The Caldari Navy fleet was almost completely annihalated, with the Federation Navy fleet taking heavy losses in return.
It was at this point I managed to enter the field. I found carnage.
My Taranis was no match for the larger ships on grid, so I tried to steer my ship through the lag and slowdown and pick off some easier enemies.
At about 2000 it was all over, unless you were fighting on the planet directly. The Titan had broken up in orbit, and a large section had decided to impact one of the battlefields.
All in all, the event was fun as hell for myself. I can’t comment on the main section (the Titan) because I missed the lot of it. Most of the Capitals destroyed (including the Titan) did not provide a killmail, but here’s the Battle Report of some of the kills.
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.