How to Ruin Low-Sec

Image courtesy of Hussars On-line
It could just be Summer doldrums. Or it could be the aftermath of recent expansion changes, or the prelude to fundamental shift-change, or simply only recent aberrations - but whatever the reason - our Low Sec neighborhood has been changing recently. And not for the better.

And look, I get it. Change is the only constant. Change is good for the soul. Blah blah yadda yadda. So don't start with the, "Rixx is whining" crap. Do us all a favor and actually consider the words. All I am doing here is musing, commenting, and generally pointing out some concerns that have been building since Kronos was released.

Yesterday I was flying around in a Kestrel. Which is just about as low as I can go and still be in a decently capable ship. Finding good fights has become increasingly challenging. (Although I did manage this fight with a Thrasher!) Even so, at various points, Dramiels, Daredevils, Comets, Sentinels, and various other ships more capable than the lowly Kessie - ran away from it.  This is nothing new. The aversion to actual PvP is legendary among certain factions in space. Let's take that as read.

Finally I manage to find an Incursus who would probably have beaten me fair and square had he stuck around to fight. Instead he warped off, probably stabbed several times for protection. So I burned off the gate a bit to check d-scan, when an Ishtar landed and red boxed me. He launched his Sentries. He really did. I laughed and warped off. Unlike the Incursus, that fight would not have ended well for me. There is no place in which my Kessie would have won a fight against an Ishtar. Not in Low Sec at least. And barring stupid, badly fit, young characters flying things they shouldn't be flying. This pilot was 2006. Did I also mention that he had links in local up and running?

Whenever our local neighborhoods get insane, we often head down various pipes to spread out and seek fame and fortune in other lands. This is pretty common, a daily activity. At some point during the day, Stay Frosty pilots are pretty much everywhere. Lately however, our ability to do this has been getting increasingly difficult. More and more of Low Sec is being "camped" these days. Especially commonly used "pipes". Camps in Low Sec are nothing new of course, and there are well known systems that are typically camped. And still are. However, we've noticed a sharp increase in new camps along different avenues. Long-lasting, semi-perma camps using multiple T3 sensor boosters with Ceptors and other fast locking over-kill machines. (Typically cheap Frig/Dessie support, which is something relatively new.)

This type of lazy PvP isn't new. But we are all noticing an increase in it across a wider spectrum. In addition, more and more we are seeing small gangs with Griffin support, or with nasty combinations of cheap Frigs escorted by expensive Pirate ships (Gilas, Garmurs, Daredevils, etc.) or all-to-common Ishtars. All backed by an amazing growth in T3 booster support.

In order to identify known Booster alts, Stay Frosty labels them orange, so that we can all see them in local. There are systems in which there will be 3-4 orange pilots in local, and yesterday I counted 10 in one System.

There is some debate about the root cause of these recent changes. Is it a localized phase that will normalize eventually? Is it in direct relation to a more active Low Sec? Is it a response to us having moved to a different area? There are certainly legitimate reasons why local might be evolving. And we'll have to wait and see if these are long-term trends, or short-term responses.

As I said earlier, I get it. Change is the only constant. And ABA will adapt to meet any challenge. We'll change along with the Meta, of course. But more significantly, IF this is indeed a trend. IF Low Sec is slowly evolving into a more organized, self-contained, group-based region - then I worry about the future of our casual play-style.

And that is all it is right now, just a worry.





26 comments:

  1. I don't know I just wonder how other regions of low sec are doing. I noticed it has been really... hard to get any fights at all without it ending in a 5v1 or something along those lines. The other problem is that in most cases, they're also using links. Just check my vengeance loss.

    I don't remember seeing so many gate camps before. The problem about them is they're also ruining everything around. Like, Reisato and those regions used to be good places to go. Now in days, you won't find anything. No wonder.

    Now I'm not sure if this is happening just around our area or not. I went yesterday to gallente space and it was calm.


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    1. No doubt that some of this is in response to ABA being there. We are very active and we explode a lot of ships. When you take that into account, along with a few others moving close as well, it starts to make some sense. People are going to start defending themselves. We saw this happen in VV as well.

      Time will tell.

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    2. One thing about your post...I would warp away from kestrel with almost every ship i fly.

      I dont give fights for kiters, and 90% of kestrels are kiters.

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    3. Actually most are rocket fit and vary now in days between dual web armor or one web shield fit. You must be talking about condor.

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    4. Are you trying to imply that rocket kestrel's are not kiters? Jemas/?

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  2. In my (very limited) experience, in spite of what they may say, most players who undock aren’t actually looking for fights — they’re looking for kills, for wins only. And this is perfectly natural and reasonable, since we are hard-wired to eliminate uncertainty and unpredictable outcomes. I am forever reminding myself: those of us who embrace uncertainty, who actively go looking for the unpredictable and emergent fight … we are the freaks.

    I saw you Monday night in Mushi in that Kestrel (“Stan’s fit” or something?). I would happily have engaged you in my T1 frig, were it not for the four or five other Frosties lurking in that and nearby systems, who I imagine would have descended on me like locusts. So I moved on. Next time, perhaps.

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    1. Typically we are all out and about looking for fights and only do the "locust" thing when the situation calls for it. I'll be the first to admit that sometimes over-zealous enthusiasm strikes, or boredom, or someone isn't paying attention and we rarely gang up on some poor soul. I wish we were perfect, but these things do happen from time to time. Most of the time we end up with that situation because we warped in on 3-6 people and they all leave expect for that poor last dood. lol.

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  3. These gatecamps and smartbombing battleships/T3 are the reason why left Caldari FW and went back to the Amarr FW. Less pilots in Space, more fun etc...

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  4. There may be some parallels between Lowsec right now and a 19th Century gold rush. It starts with the "discovery" of a very valuable commodity in a sparsely populated area (in this case Mordus BPCs). This results in an initial rush of prospectors, closely followed by gangs of professional criminals and businessmen (the terms are interchangeable) whose goal is to efficiently separate the prospectors from their valuable commodities.

    The original inhabitants of the area (natives, small farmers, etc...) rarely benefit from the new state of affairs.

    Furthermore, with the increased number of roaming gangs, people become more likely to run from a single Kestrel since they can't tell if he's a genuine 1v1 PvPer or a scout for the blob waiting on the other side of the gate.

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    1. I joke a lot about people running away from me, but I don't ever want that "joke" to become a seriously considered issue. People have been running away from me since I started playing Eve, heck sometimes I run away from people (like that Ishtar). The Lion doesn't always catch his prey. The prey are fast, smart and they jump really high. We have to be smarter, sneakier, and more cunning than them. That is on us. Not on the prey. They won't change.

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    2. I'll confirm the bit about original inhabitants not benefiting from the new state of affairs. I haven't really done any serious carebearing for a couple of weeks now.

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  5. What if you received a bonus to your killboard if your kill was done solo or even was done with fewer ships than the opponent gang? I think much of this is fueled by the "killboard". If you got more credit for solo kills maybe more people would fly that way. You certainly should get more credit for a solo kill than from killing a miner with a blops gang.

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  6. Fear of loss - not the monetary loss, but the fear of your loss showing up on your killboard is the killer of fun in EvE. Some pilots focus on it, but nearly all corp/alliance leadership focus on it. They know that predatory corps look for alliances with poor kill/loss ratios or expensive kills to mark folks for war decs.

    If killmails and killboards didn't exist, we would not have this problem.

    Oh, for T3 booster alts, just make link boosts on-grid only. That problem solved, but it does present CCP a separate problem as a soon as boosts become on-grid only, a whole bunch (several hundred at LEAST) of booster accounts will be dropped like hot potatoes.

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    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    2. Also that puts the ball on links solidly in the park of fleets. Now links are available to everybody, make them grid only and they're available only to gangs with logi who can keep them alive.

      That's a net negative in my book.

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  7. We noticed that Gal Mil has taken to camping the Tama high sec gate these days... so we taught them a lesson http://killfeed.eveuniversity.org/?a=kill_related&kll_id=190956

    Weakness of gate camps is your enemy knows where you are and what you have :)
    If you want some more fights come down towards Placid. The Eve Uni Low Sec Campus just finished a small gang competition and is currently running a solo PvP competition :) just don't try and gank our carebears in our home system or we will undock the Griffins :)

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    1. The Uni has been fielding some very good soloists of late in lowsec, guys like Corohill, Pax, Kelon etc. Kudos!

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  8. Sounds fun. Might head to that location today and see what I can catch :)

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  9. sad but true...

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  10. Step 1. Identify gate camp
    Step 2. Destroy gate camp
    Step 3. If unable to complete step 2 find someone who can
    Step 4. Go back to roaming.

    - Thanatos Marathon

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  11. Small gang pvp is more dynamic than solo pvp. It can't always be reduced to the paper-rock-scissors of soloing.

    Rise to the occasion or retreat from the field.

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  12. I said after kronos comes.we would see more camps because they can't get fights in plex. Personally I think it was the stupid fw changes

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  13. Yeah I got agree with you Fire Bush. Also the fact that people cannot cloak within 30km from the beacon as turned things worse. Because before, you would catch cloakers that were less aware near the entry point or something. Now they stick at 30km that means you need a faction disruptor or something to grab them. I really think if they want one of the features or they really take it out or leave it as it is. Now we have a semi-nerf feature that doesn't do crap.

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  14. Yeah our corner of EVE is similar, some new corps recently joined shadow and they are keen on gatecamps..

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