Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Oh noes, CCP makes EVE soft!

Poetic Stanziel announced his quitting from EVE Of course it can be a troll/satire as several of his previous posts like this. His stated reason is interesting however, regardless of his future in the game: “In the last year though, CCP Games has been "trammelizing" EVE. Making it much safer, spending development resources to protect idiots. I want a game where players have to protect themselves. A game that forces players to play smart. A game where players cannot rely on the developer to protect them from their own laziness and ignorance. But CCP has seen fit to create many mechanics that do the job players should be doing for themselves.” Then he mentions the lack of Hulkageddon (clearly attributed to the mining barge changes) and the change of Terms of Service that ban certain way of scamming by misidentifying yourself as someone’s alt.

I’ve ganked 52B in a month long after the mining barge rebalance, so can prove first hand that miner ganking isn’t dead. Hulkageddon is, and for good. Hulkageddon wasn’t what Poetic believes, a piece of emergent gameplay where the strong preyed on the weak. It was about starting a 51 days free account, after 3-4 days of training getting into a T1 fit Catalyst, jumping from belt to belt with the catalyst, approaching and ganking anyone who dares to mine. After the pilot got to -5 sec status, repeat with another pilot in the account. After all 3 got to red, just let the account lapse. Remember, biomassing -5 characters is bannable but letting your account lapse is not.

Before the mining barge rebalance it was practically impossible to tank any mining ship to resist a T1 fit newbie ship with a newbie pilot. The only choice miners had for mining below 0.9 was the Rokh. In that sense the mining barges were clearly unbalanced as they were completely outperformed by another ship class in their main role. Imagine if Rokh would be faster and lock faster than an interceptor. Wouldn’t that warrant an interceptor (or Rokh) rebalance?

Hulkageddon was an event where the dumb and incompetent was preying on everyone due to a broken mechanic. On the side of the ganker there was no risk, effort, skillpoint or player skill requirement. The mining barge rebalance changed ganking into what it should be: an act where the strong preys on the weak. Today the miners have all the tools to defend themselves, yet many fail because they are dumb. However a 3 days old pilot in a T1 catalyst can’t – and shouldn’t - gank even a very dumb miner.

To gank now, I’m running 3 accounts directly involved in ganking (the fourth is a thief which can be omitted if you don’t care about loot). The better skilled ganker has 15M SP, granted only 10M affects the Catalyst, the rest is his training for Talos. The less skilled ganker has 6M. Both of these figures makes throwaway alts unusable, forcing me to deal with negative sec status, using scout and proper warpins. Also allows anyone ready to fight back to shoot me at any time, not just when actively ganking (still, idiots trade kill rights and wardec). If I arrive too far, no gank. If someone catches me on the undock or a gate, no gank, if the miner isn’t flying a tankless barge, no solo gank. If I make a mistake, I’m losing a 10M T2 fit Catalyst, if I make a bigger mistake, I also lose a 60M implants. I still gank miners because they are dumb.

What Poetic and most of the “PvPers” want is not “the strong preys on the weak”, because it can easily show that they are the weak. They want an “I prey on anyone I wish”: a broken game. Of course the game was playable before the barge rebalance because most people choose not to gank – for moral reasons. In this environment if you declared yourself a badass, you became one as the broken mechanic allowed you to kill anyone in sight. Now, after the balance, the chance to gank is still there, but not for everyone, which makes the “for fun people” mad. Yes, you can’t defeat people casually anymore – and you shouldn’t be able to.

Success should depend on effort and knowledge and not wishes. Before the rebalances, EVE was giving out “welfare killmails” for incompetent badass-wannabes. It was changed into what he demands: “A game that forces players to play smart. A game where players cannot rely on the developer to protect them from their own laziness and ignorance.”. Previously he could farm kills despite his laziness and ignorance. Now that this welfare was taken from him, he cries and ragequits.

I’d rather suggest him to learn to play and get the kills even when they aren’t trivial anymore. Hint: join the New Order, they take players new to ganking and train them.

The same is true for the TOS change which simply banned an annoying option of claiming you to be someone else. “Being an alt” is an out-of-game thing, in the game you just interact with pilots without any way to see the player behind it. To verify the identity of another player you need out-of-game methods, which is immersion-breaking, bad game design. Scamming, spying and counter-spying should be performed in-game and not by defacing Wikis or stealing IP addresses from teamspeak servers.



The anti-tears of today features the bright future of Riavayed and a convo from an educated miner:

18 comments:

Anonymous said...

To verify the identity of another player you need out-of-game methods, which is immersion-breaking, bad game design. Scamming, spying and counter-spying should be performed in-game and not by defacing Wikis or stealing IP addresses from teamspeak servers.

So you'd seek to destroy the metagame? the very thing which makes eve great. The thing that most people are attracted to?

This has nothing to do with "game design", it is a game policy decision which has allowed a certain type of game play to flourish - a type of game play which is almost entirely responsible for making eve online, and thus CCP, profitable.

Anonymous said...

Thank you. I disagree with a lot you write, but all the people that cry about Eve becoming too easy are the people that can't hack it if they don't have a thousand "bros" to back them up. I'm sure if Ultima had a killboard, Poe's would be as pathetic as his personal kb in Eve is. Good riddance to another piece of trash who can only hit f1.

Anonymous said...

You have missed the most important part of Poetic 's post! Not the "grr I quit!!" part. Rather, the part where he claims that a CCP employee quit in part because CCP wouldn't take action against 10 000 botting accounts.

There will always be some bots, but CCP willfully ignoring it is disconcerting indeed.

It's also puzzling that Poetic would not follow up on that...

LR

Gevlon said...

That was without any references or evidence.

Michael LeBlanc said...

Completely agree on the mining barge rebalance. This is a gameplay change that makes the game better, and that's the end of it.

Completely disagree on the TOS. What makes EVE a good game is that there are few restrictions on what you can do. Any restriction needs very good justification. This is NOT a gameplay change, but a question of policy, or if you will, a metagame change.

What is gained by such a restriction? All it does is keep people from being in one particular position where they have to believe or not something someone says. I'm fine with things like naming restrictions when it comes to impersonation (eg lowercase l vs capital I, letter O vs number 0, etc), which is abusing a font problem, vs lying, which has no place being restricted in EVE.

The fact that one GM said you could be banned for accurately saying you are the alt of yourself shows just how stupid this rule is. The argument that this was already being enforced and now the TOS is just being updated to reflect this doesn't address the issue, which is the enforcement itself. It's basically me saying 'I'm fucking your wife tonight, but you can't be mad because I've been doing it for years'

maxim said...

@TOS

There is a line to be drawn here.

A character within the sandbox can and should be able to do whatever the hell he wants, including posing as another character.

However, he should not be able to avoid the consequences of doing so through the use of out-of-sandbox mechanics. And spamming alts is an out-of-sandbox mechanic.

In case of scamming, the harm from people abusing the living hell out of out-of-sandbox mechanics is way greater than whatever "metagame" benefit is derived from having more scam-related gameplay.

Now, if a scammer was somehow limited to staying on a single character, i'd be okay with that. Scam once, scam twice, get a rep for being scammer, live with that rep - all is fine in the world.

That's not how Eve works and i don't anticipate it ever working that way.

So, with the ideal solution not being available, we are then forced to choose between two evils. An Eve where identity scamming is allowed and Eve where identity scamming is forbidden. My vote is for forbidden, because it really does make for a better game.

CCP is not making Eve soft. CCP is making Eve harder on people who would bend the rules way too far. If that turns out too hard for scammer folk...

Well, tough. Welcome to New Eden.

Michael LeBlanc said...

@Maxim

The problem is this doesn't address your issue. It doesn't in any way help with throwaway accounts. It doesn't in any way help connect actions of one person on one char to his other char.

All this policy does is protect people too stupid to understand that there aren't any rules against scamming.

There's a simple player based solution to identity scamming, always assume people are lying about who their alt is.

You can still do transactions with alts, but you should always assume it's a different person, and treat 'this is my alt' as 'I trust this person', and take from that what you will.

Someone else said...

"The same is true for the TOS change which simply banned an annoying option of claiming you to be someone else."

Indeed, a very annoying option.

http://greedygoblin.blogspot.de/2013/09/the-war-for-finanar.html

You were asked if "Kelly Koko" is an alt of Botslayer/Botmuncher and you clearly said: No, i am not.
So you claimed to be someone else, you told a lie to achieve something. As there are no ingame mechanics to prove your statement, your whole "War For Finanar" was so called "meta gaming".

There is no difference between saying "I'm a recruiter for dumbswarm" when you are not and saying "I'm not an alt of Botslayer Goblin!" while you are.
Both is an abuse and can not be verified ingame.

And just to make it clear: By saying "I am not an alt of Gevlon Goblin" you do claim to be someone else, as your existence in game makes it necessary that you are SOMEONE else (if you are not a bot). But, as you are NOT someone else, you faked to be someone else.

There you are - TOS violation.


maxim said...

@Michael LeBlanc

<< The problem is this doesn't address your issue. It doesn't in any way help with throwaway accounts. It doesn't in any way help connect actions of one person on one char to his other char >>

I do believe i said that that's not how Eve works and i don't believe it will ever work any other way.

In case there is a reading comprehension problem, i will repeat.
The "throwaway accounts" thing is not something possible to "fix". Therefore a smart game designer would treat it as less of a "problem" and more of a "feature".

All policy and lower level game design decisions need to be made with that in mind.

<< All this policy does is protect people too stupid to understand that there aren't any rules against scamming. >>

I find this a worthwhile goal.
Identity scams contribute exactly nothing to the game experience. While they may earn the scammer a fair amount of ISK, i do believe they also cause a lot of players to just leave the game.

It is some useless liar getting more resources for useless lies versus more players in game. In my mind, it is not even a choice.

The other thing that policy does is forcing scammers out of their comfort zone, to look for better and more inventive ways to scam. You know, actually go out there and make that metagame. Instead of just abusing the newbies and pretending to be productive that way.

<< There's a simple player based solution to identity scamming, always assume people are lying about who their alt is. >>

"Player-based solutions" are fine as long as i can choose to not use them and not be entirely crippled in my gameplay.

I can choose to gamble by mining in Mackinaw, or i can chose to be safe by tanking a Procurer. Both choices are viable, and it is good.

On another hand, at this moment, choosing to take somebody at his word in Eve is simply not a viable path. And while a lot of old school Eve players may think it a good thing, it is actually not, because there is no choice to be made here.

Anonymous said...

there is a serious lack of rock/paper/scissors to some aspects of EVE.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rock-paper-scissors
hotdrop (cyno insta bridge) is unlikely counterable. decloak, scram, web and lit cyno. it's like throwing rock, paper an scissors all at once.
there is no counter cloak role. so there is no real scout counter-scout gameplay. but there is no real covert scout role either. cloak doesn't cloak you from local and other things. which would encourage the counterpart.

Mining and ganking miners feels more rock paper scissors now and I like it.


Also I don't get the hype about the TOS change.
first post of the threadnought states
"For all practical purposes ____there has been no change___ in how impersonation issues will be handled compared to the last few years. The TOS update reflects the way reported cases of impersonation have been handled by Customer Support for a long time. The rules applied have been buried in our naming policy and EULA but have now been placed in plain view in order to better help players to make decisions on how they interact with one another . . . One concern is that we have pretty much banned all scams in EVE. Clearly, this is not the case."

Do they flat out lie? I don't think so.
https://forums.eveonline.com/default.aspx?g=posts&m=3613784#post3613784

Also you are open to suggest things. As it apears people seem confused. so a thread is made so people can give constructive feedback.
https://forums.eveonline.com/default.aspx?g=posts&m=3613780#post3613780


Gevlon said...

@Someone else: please point out where did I say "no"?

I started to accuse him of being the alt.

Michael LeBlanc said...

@Maxim

"I find this a worthwhile goal.
Identity scams contribute exactly nothing to the game experience. While they may earn the scammer a fair amount of ISK, i do believe they also cause a lot of players to just leave the game."

Your arguments apply equally to ALL scams, perhaps you want to get rid of them all?

"On another hand, at this moment, choosing to take somebody at his word in Eve is simply not a viable path. And while a lot of old school Eve players may think it a good thing, it is actually not, because there is no choice to be made here."

So I guess the answer to that is yes?

@Anon

"Also I don't get the hype about the TOS change.
first post of the threadnought states
"For all practical purposes ____there has been no change___"

That's not an argument, it just means we weren't aware of their ridiculous policy before, because most people didn't report such scams. Like I said above, "I'm fucking your wife tonight, but don't be mad, I've been doing it for years"

Bobbins said...

I do think that they made the Procurer too strong. Whether part of that is the fact that they are still well under the build cost i'm undecided on. Basically no matter how badly you fit the ship it is gankable!

PS. I think the Skiff is OK.

Someone else said...

I have to admit that you made a pretty good counter!

You are right, you did not say "i am not" but everything you said was meant to create the illusion.

Just give an example:
I do have 2 accounts, first one named "Scamrecruiter" and the second one "dumb newbro", both are logged in and in the same system, making this "conversation" in local:

"dumb newbro": Scamrecruiter, does Dumbswarm Federation still claim 50M ISK for the invite?

"Scamrecruiter": Havn't heard about any changes in the recruitment program. Do you want to join Dumbswarm Federation?

"dumb newbro": thinking about it. So if I send you 50M ISK you'll sent me an invitation?"

"Scamrecruiter": I'll send you an eve mail right after I've received the 50M ISK

(some minutes later)

"Scamrecruiter": gratz "dumb newbro" and welcome!

"Scamrecruiter": Anyone else need an eve mail? Just rc my name and send 50M ISK. Have to go off in 15 mins

------------

Using your words you can say:
Scamrecruiter didn't say he is a recruiter for dumbswarm federation...
He didn't even say that he will send out corp-invites (he only mentions eve mails)
So... perfectly save by the TOS.

Still, the example above and what you have written with one the white knights only has/had one intention: faking an identity
No matter HOW you did it.

Anonymous said...

"That was without any references or evidence"

..You know its truly a bullshit story when GEVLON GOBLIN sees right through it.

Sreegs and Stillman have both vehemently denied the story, its quite clear that this is nothing more than flaming pile of dogshit Poe is leaving on CCP's doorstep during his ragequit. He either invented the story completely, or was foolish and believed a Goon that slipped him the story as a highly successful troll attempt.

maxim said...

@Michael LeBlanc
I did say specifically identity scams. Which is "lie to people -> get billions ISK out of exactlty nothing".
It is pretty much a broken mechanic in terms of ISK earning potential to effort employed.

Other scams, from simple margin trading scam to full blown spy operations - are all fair game, because they require much more commitment on part of the scammer in terms of game resources, time, or both.

Michael LeBlanc said...

@Maxim "lie to people -> get billions ISK out of exactlty nothing"

What? How's that? All misrepresenting your identity can do is help build trust, just like any other lie. It's not like I can just say I'm Chribba and you'll give me a billion ISK. I need to do much more, like convince someone that I have a Nyx I'm going to sell them in addition to convincing them I'm Chribba.

How about ISK doubling, should that be banned? This is surely 'lie to people, get ISK for nothing else'.

maxim said...

You seem to not be aware of exactly how people pose as, for example, recruitment officers of popular corps, and take hundreds of mill for providing "back doors to application process".
There is real easy money to be had in impersonating popular people or corps.

But that's not even the big issue. You really are downplaying the impact that misrepresenting identities can help on a game system. It can potentially outright kill the social component of the game. Identity scams pretty much punish people for socialising.

Double ISK scam is quite benign in comparison. And it does actually involve way more work than identity scams.

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