Eve is Dying Form

The Eve Is Dying Report
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Yesterday morning I was grabbing some breakfast and noticed this paper on our refrigerator that I don't remember seeing before. Just some school notice or something, the front wasn't important - but the back was. It was some joke office complaint form and it sparked a thought. What if there was a form for reporting the constant and never-ending noise that is "Eve is Dying"?

I'm posting it here for archive purposes.

I still haven't figured out my schedule. There just doesn't seem to be time in the day to post regularly anymore. I will keep looking.



Guest Post: New Eden's Highwayman


New Eden's Trade Lanes Have Given Rise to an Old\New Profession

It is a common misconception by many to view empire space, in particular high security space, as “Safe”. While CCP Games had put many restrictions in that part of space to allow newer and older players relative safety, the reality is many players have found ways around these features, exploiting game mechanics to generate content for themselves, as well as a tidy profit. One such enterprising individual is Opec, a member of Hoover Inc. Pandemic Legion [-10.0]. Opec has been running a one man shakedown operation for several weeks, targeting the traffic that passes between major trade hubs located in high security space. His methods vary but their aim is all the same: Get as much money from unsuspecting travelers. In order to do so, Opec employs several tools, some of which had been used by high security space pirates for years. The most common shakedown method is bumping. Simply put, using a ship with sufficient mass and speed, a player crashes into another player’s ships, causing no damage but sending the two flying in opposite directions. Due to EVE Online’s unique physics, such mechanic is used by skilled players to push freighters and haulers off gates and out of alignment. Unable to align or jump back, a bumped ship cannot enter warp and escape, thus left to the mercy of the bumper who would often exact a heavy toll from his victim. Once the ransom is paid, the hauler is allowed to resume his or hers original course.

The second shakedown method is more nefarious. Using an alternate character, Opec offers his services to unsuspecting pilots who are in the process of being bumped off the gate. This usually come in the form of applying stasis webifiers which slow down a ship considerably. Since a slower speed allows a faster aligning time and entry into warp, many freighter pilots believe that such aid would help them escape the situation and readily accept. Suffice to say, such beliefs are unfounded in game mechanics.

Any act of aggression not sanctioned by a war declaration or a kill right in high security space would cause a CONCORD (NPC) fleet to spawn near the aggressor and proceed to blow him\her to smithereens. To get around that and to allow some limited warfare in high security space that is immediate and not costly, CCP Games had implemented a dueling system which allows two players to engage in consensual warfare. Both haulers and pirates quickly adopted the new mechanic in their line of work. Using a clean character, often fairly new with unblemished corporate history to offer aid in stasis webifying lowers the guard of many pilots who’d otherwise hesitate. Once a duel invitation is accepted, Opec’s character sheds its friendly fa├žade and proceeds to warp scramble the unfortunate individual. Unable to warp off thanks to the warp scrambler’s effect, the victim is forced off the gate using a secondary character. Unable to jump out or warp off, the hauler is forced to either pay a hefty ransom or be destroyed. Many prefer to pay up rather than lose their ship and cargo, something which also works to Opec’s advantage as less time is spent on dismantling the ship and possibly losing part or all the valuable cargo thanks to EVE Online’s loot drop mechanics.

Of course, many veteran freighter pilots often employ their own secondary characters in order to provide their own stasis webifiers. For those cases Opec has a trick up his sleeve. Using a cruiser fitted to tank a lot of damage, he applies warp scramblers to stop the freighters from warping. Though the ship is destroyed within a few moments, the application of warp scramblers often causes freighters to decelerate as they are unable to warp off momentarily. This gives Opec a large enough window of opportunity to use another character to bump off the freighter and force it to pay a ransom. Not everyone is willing to pay a ransom or accept a duel request. For such cases, Opec must call for help. Thankfully Opec operates within the sphere of influence of CODE. [CODE.]. The alliance has made a name for itself for suicide killing, or as is commonly known in the game as “Suicide ganking” freighters. A large, well oiled machine, CODE. calculates the exact number of cheap, throwaway, ships needed to destroy a freighter or a hauler and still turn a profit from its cargo. Thus Opec can rely on CODE. to supply the firepower needed to destroy ransom refusers. Whatever loot drops is often split between those who participated in the gank.

The Loot from One Successful Gank
In the few weeks of operating, Opec has managed to amass a small fortune from his illicit activities. From ransom money to loot drops, Opec has gained approximately 30 billion ISK, and that is not counting the share that went to accomplices and helpers along the way. What is more, Opec is not alone in this line of work. Across empire space, plenty of other individuals and groups are stalking the trade lanes of New Eden, looking for future victims and extorting ISK and blood from unsuspecting pilots. In a way, they have become New Eden’s highwaymen, brigands whose only interest is in shaking up traders and who operate with near impunity. Making the long haul to Jita and other trade hubs one of the most dangerous activities in the game.
Guest Article written by Salivan Harddin (@SalivanHarddin)



NEW After Hours Podcast



After Hours is also available on iTunes and is also now available on Spotify! So it is even easier to listen to your favorite podcast. Which is After Hours obviously. Ok fine, perhaps it is "one-of" your favorite podcasts.

I know I haven't been posting much lately, nothing to worry about. I'll be back at it again, just trying to figure out where exactly I left the time I need to write a blog. I know I left it around here somewhere! I'm sure it'll turn up eventually.

Until then, enjoy the podcast.



Forgotten Treasure


A couple years ago Stay Frosty moved from Ishomilken in the north of Black Rise, to our current home base on the southern border of Black Rise in Verge Vendor. The move, for me at least, was a nightmare. At the time my personal life was slightly stressful (to say the least) and I had to move not only my own holdings, but those of the Corporation as well. Even with help it was chaotic, stressful, and time-consuming.

In all of that back and forth I never got around to moving my alt's Archon. Despite many back and forth transport trips, the Carrier landed in Isho and managed to stay there. Any time I thought about bringing it down a war would break out, or something else would come up. A Carrier in Low Sec is not a super high priority, so it just kept getting pushed down the priority list.

Skip ahead a couple years.

Anytime I'd look at it in my assets windows all I'd see would be an Archon in a hangar with some fuel and a bunch of T1 Frigates and some random mods. Last week I happened to mention this situation to Devlin and he has an alt that can fly Archons. So we agreed to finally bring her down to our staging system. It turns out that she was FULL of things!

Fully fit ships mostly. Imagine my surprise when I opened the hangar and discovered fully fit ancient ships that had been long forgotten. A fully fit Bhaalgorn and Phantasm. A weirdly fit Proteus. A time-capsule to another time with a 100MN AB HAM Tengu! Remember when those were all the rage? A Gila fitted with HAMS. Heck some of these ships had lost entire slots in the intervening years. A few couldn't undock because they had more drones inside their drone bays than you could have. lolz.

I've admitted before that I tend to hoard ships. Not to keep, but to have on hand for any fight that comes along. I love spaceships and I like having them at-hand when needed. On the one hand I am very protective of my ships all while often throwing them at things for a good fight. I have no problem exploding anything I own, but I'd rather explode the other guy's ships instead. But this discovery was like opening up a time-capsule to another time. It is hard to remember what some of these fits were even for? But being a poor Pirate who likes to have several hundred ships ready to undock means I can't just throw away fully fitted ships. It causes me pain to destroy a rig once it is attached to a ship. Last weekend I flew an Arty Shield Sleipnir into battle even though it still had a armor rig on it! That poor Sleipnir had been re-fitted so many times it got confused. I could have destroyed that rig, but I just couldn't bring myself to do it.

So I spent some time trying to update these old-timey ships. Luckily the T3's can switch rigs without destroying them, which is awesome. I even re-figured the platforms a bit, especially on the Proteus. It is still a weird ship, but it is less weird now. The rest just needed minor adjustments and changes in modules.

This was like finding buried treasure. And now all of these ships are marked as slightly more expendable than regular ships. I already recklessly used the Bhaalgorn to kill a Megathron the other day. Having been lost for two years they already feel like they need to stretch their legs a bit. And if they explode? Well then, isn't that what spaceships are for?



Eve is Fifteen Wallpaper

Eve is 15 Anniversary Wallpaper
Click to download various sizes for your desktop
I waited  two weeks to release the wallpaper version, just wanted to give it time. I've also updated the original post to include this wallpaper link and a alternative link to a slightly lower resolution of the full size poster. A few people had asked for that as their chosen printers couldn't handle files bigger than 200Mb. The new file size is around 136Mb I believe.

This has been an insanely busy week and I haven't been posting much lately. Finishing up some community projects, some freelance work, and being extremely busy at work. There are some potentially exciting projects in the early early stages of development, but I can't really talk about those right now. They may or may not amount to anything, so we'll see how it goes.

Until next time.



Stay Frosty 100,000 Kills


After 56 months of extremely active operation Stay Frosty passed a significant milestone this week by registering our 100,000th kill. According to zKill we passed that mark on Tuesday. Several weeks ago I had announced to the Corp that I would be awarding the pilot responsible for the 100k kill 100 T1 Frigates (and a few surprises). My only stipulation was that the final kill couldn't be a Pod/Rookie Ship/Alt - essentially nothing "lame". Our bloodthirsty band took to the challenge and we had a record-breaking day on Tuesday.

Privately I had decided weeks ago that I would most likely award the prize to two pilots, the actual 100k kill and the one immediately after it which broke the 100k barrier. If they happened close enough to each other. Which is what happened.

Vala Azar killed a Comet with a Tormentor. And Fire Bush killed a half-fit Rifter with an Omen Navy Issue. Both of which perfectly encapsulate the spirit of old-school low sec piracy that Stay Frosty has stood for since day one. And so both pilots will split the prizes, which should be delivered this weekend. Congratulation to them both. And to every pilot that contributed to this achievement, both currently and in the past.

If you are curious, the very first Stay Frosty kill was registered on May 7, 2013 when I solo'd a Kestrel in my own Kestrel. That was kill number one.

When I started this back then I hoped that it would last. That we'd somehow manage to make it work despite the odds, the complications, the competition and everything else stacked against us. It was a rough start, but from the very beginning we attracted people of great character who accepted the challenge. Not all of those players are still with us almost five years later, but many are. Along the way a few betrayed us, a few stole from us, a few disappointed us, but the vast majority rose to the challenges they faced. Challenges we all faced together. And despite my own personal horrors these past few years, we still managed to thrive. And survive. All of which is a testament to the 305 pilots that currently call Stay Frosty home. And to the nearly 2,000 other players that have passed thru our always open doors over the years. To all of them I say Thank You. This has been a great adventure.

Next? We have a couple of Low Sec groups to pass.