A Level Playing Field
The recently announced changes to Damage Controls and Warp Disruptors and Scramblers and ECCM and Damage Modules and Damps and Tracking Mods and ECM and Cap Batteries heck, even orbits, represent a HUGE round of tiericide changes coming up in March. Whew, that is a lot of modules being affected. Is this the largest single round of tiericide we've ever seen? Dunno, but it is an exciting time to be alive.
When I look back over the past eight years and think about the times the Eve player base got really upset with proposed changes, a common theme starts to emerge. This isn't a secret, or a special observation, because the theme is rather apparent. The things that really drive the player-base cray cray are the changes that threaten to tip the sandbox. Changes that "golden ammo" or "pay to win" or give special advantage to players willing to spend more real life monies. It is a fundamental and accepted mantra of the sandbox - fairness. When that is threatened, or potentially threatened, we all get extremely nervous. And often angry.
On the other side of that coin are universal changes, such as these new tiericide updates. These are Universal Changes that affect the entire player-base. And while your specific play-style might change somewhat, everyone that does what you do will also be affected. So it really doesn't matter. No matter what CCP does to the game (in theory of course) as long as it affects ALL of us, it really doesn't matter. We'll do what we always do. Learn. Adapt. And Modify. And move on.
The more important and esoteric question is this, does it make the game "better"? And that is where the heart of debate lies in countless blog posts, channel discussions and forum debates. Personally, having finally had a chance to read over the proposed changes, I'm in the "much better" camp. I still think we could have merged more modules and eliminated some more, but the overall effect of these changes is extremely positive.
Yesterday I was out hunting and found an Executioner sitting in a large plex. I landed about 60k from him and started burning towards him with my Comet's AB. I fully expected him to warp off, but instead he cloaked up. Ok. So I launched my drones and burned straight at his position. (My null sec instincts are still razor sharp thank you!) And sure enough I de-cloaked him, locked him, and scrammed him. And then he warped away. So not only did he have a cloak on his Executioner, but he also had WCS fitted. And I won't even mention the Worm I tried to catch that had WCS fitted, because I don't want to make you cry.
This is a perfect example of what makes a good module and what makes a bad module. A cloak is a good module. It is good because it has a skill based counter. In that situation my own player skill is the counter to the cloak. I made a mental note of his position and burned straight at him and successfully de-cloaked him. His decision to fit and use a cloaking device is a choice he made. Point/Counter-Point. We each make decisions that affect the outcome of an engagement. That makes for excellent game play.
Not all modules do that. These changes, while they certainly don't intend to fix everything, are yet another big step towards leveling the playing field for all of us. And, in the end, that is all we want.
Onward and upward.