I just read CCP SoniClover’s dev blog on the planned changes to hi-sec war declarations for Inferno. There is much that is good for the meta game in these changes.
- Unlimited war for a price
- No war avoidance
- No avoiding the cost of war
- Mercenary contracts
- War reports (the kill mail just looks awesome)
Then there are the parts that worry me. For instance, I’m a lone sheep industrialist. I’ll never get filthy rich this way, but I also do not have to rely on anyone else. I have thin margins, but there is no interpersonal drama. I don’t have to be pleasant all the time. I don’t have to listen to whining. I can sit around in my underwear if I like without garnering an HR complaint. That fits my introverted personality just fine. I deal with people all day long. Why the hell would I want to do it for “fun?”
Unfortunately CCP doesn’t seem to see it that way. Single player corporations like Mabrick Mining and Manufacturing [MABMM] may not survive the Inferno. The cost of declaring war against us will be inconsequential now that we can no longer avoid the war. The lulz from watching us burn in space will be worth it to the average ganker corp. Hell, Poetic Discourse was just saying
that griefing EvE University would be worth a few hundred miskies (million ISK) and might have been worth 3 biskies had the mechanics worked out. What’ll the new mechanic do to a lone sheep corp? Once warred upon, we either:
- pay up – hand our profits over to the griefers so why bother to be an industrialist
- put up – watch our profits evaporate as our investments explode around us so ditto
- hide out – so much for playing EvE and ditto again
- get out – go back to an NPC corp
Even if I decide to get out, I have to do it BEFORE someone war-decs MABMM. I might not be able to change corps while in a war. See the question about corp hopping if you don’t think they’re thinking about it. That leaves me open to the worst sort of ransom – the one I can’t avoid. The very mechanics of this change would leave me vulnerable to a never ending war-dec. The dev blog even says so:
Q: How long will wars last?
A: As long as the aggressor pays every week and no one surrenders (or no surrender offer is accepted), then a war can last forever.
I guarantee the price of surrender will offset the cost incurred by the aggressor and continue to rise as time goes on. There is no reason for the aggressor to call an end to it. They will get their ISK back or reap all the tears in the universe forever – or at least a very long time. And if I do pay, that sets an extremely dangerous precedent doesn’t it? After the enforced peace period the griefers might be right back for some more easy ISK. Now there’s a damned-if-you-do and damned-if-you-don’t situation.
So let’s say I capitulate. I give up on MABMM and go back to the Center for Advanced Studies. How does that fit in with the rest of CCP’s “vision.” Well, here are two parts of that “vision” and how they change in this scenario. One is new (discussed at the recently concluded Fanfest) and one is as old as EvE itself.
Vision: all players can own a POS.
Reality: not if they’re a lone sheep forced into an NPC corp (please correct me if I am wrong.)
Vision: EvE is a sandbox.
Reality: you can’t partake in the sandbox alone so it really isn’t a sandbox.
That last makes this scenarios about as un-EvE as anything can get. PvPers are so worried about losing the Everyone-versus-Everyone fantasy that they’ll gladly sacrifice the sandbox? That would be a sad day indeed.
Now, this blog post is certainly a worst case scenario. And I am also certain Team Super Friends is smart enough not to eliminate the sandbox for even one EvE subscriber. Unfortunately, by closing the door on some of the people who currently game the war-dec system, they are opening the door for others. The situation will change with Inferno, but it will get no better for me and may even get a lot worse for lone sheep industrialists.