Greedy Goblin

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Being social causes the blue doughnut

Few things causes as many negative comments as the "blue doughnut". This is the myth of the stable nullsec where nothing happens. In its ideal form, everyone is blue to each other, but the current state is good enough for being called one. The two largest power holders, CFC and PL signed a treaty not to attack the land of each other and limit themselves to skirmishes. Nulli Secunda, the only third significant power holder was reseted by PL in the moment they realized that Nulli takes this "war" thing seriously. While CFC and PL aren't allies, they aren't enemies either.

What is the worst thing about the blue doughnut? That it completely locks out the "little guy". There is nothing you can do to change the status quo. Except, you obviously can. CFC had to deploy home and address their second SotA to the war against Mordus Angels. Is MoA a powerhouse? No, it's just a small NPC nullsec alliance. Yeah, "NPC trash lol". But they are killing CFC and their assets in surprising amount. What is even more "lol" than MoA? My GRR project is killing CFC in highsec, surpassed the numbers of Asakai in May, after starting in January (monthly report will be a bit late as big news will be included).

Why do people cry instead of act? To answer that, we have to look no further than the highsec missioner. If we ask him when he'll do something that matters, he'll answer "I'll get T2 large blaster first, and I need some support skills at 5 to be ready". We know exactly when will he be ready: never. In the meantime pilots with 1/10th of his skillpoints are already fighting.

But collecting skillpoints isn't the only way to become ready. If you ask what you need to be ready, from anyone who is interested in keeping the status quo, the answer will be "get more friends". It doesn't matter if you ask a PL, N3 or CFC leader, his first advice is "get friends". So people are sitting outside and collecting friends, like the missioner collecting his skillpoints. "We'll be ready when we trained the new guys" - they say. "Damn, X burned out, we have to train a new FC to get ready!" "We need to recruit harder to get enough dudes in ships!" Excuses, nonsense and nothing but waste of time, while solo and very small group PvP-ers are killing the "big and strong" left and right.

The right time to make difference on the EVE map is now. It was "now" a year ago too. And 5 years ago. To make difference in anything, the perfect time is always "now" and the worst possible is always "a bit later when I have X".

Being social makes people believe that "friends" are needed for anything. No. Your efforts, measured in PvP kills and ISK are needed. Sure, you can (and should) cooperate with other people. But to cooperate, both you and him must be doing the thing already instead of sitting outside dreaming. When two dreamers start to cooperate, only their dreaming efficiency increases.

The bittervets who failed their dreams and the power holders who are happy with the status quo are telling you that you are too small and irrelevant. They want to stop your efforts from changing the status quo and make you waste your time recruiting random idiots and training them for a war that will never come.

If you leave this obviously futile path and start acting, you get their attention fast. When I offered 20B for their titan, the thread quickily grew to 12 pages. There were 219 posts when I'm writing this, with only 17 being mine while 116 (53%) coming from various CFC elements trying to convince me to give up, with Lucas Kell leading the way with 15 posts. One of them even tried to convince Mynnna to blow up his own titan just to burn the bounty. Needless to say, Mynnna was less than eager to do so.

So how about you stop whining about the blue doughnut, pick the nastiest piece of it (hint: it's GSF) and go to kill some of them?! Or open the killboard and find someone already killing them and start sending them money so they don't have to stop between ops to grind back their lost ships.

PS: the blue doughnut just lost a crystal.


Magson said...

Isn't that a Chinese proverb? "The best time to plant a tree is 20 years ago. The 2nd best time is right now."

Von Keigai said...

The logic of "numbers trump everything else" is what creates the blue donut. It's not that people are social and therefore lump into numbers, and that happens to win. It's that people want to win, and therefore they lump, and to lump effectively they must be social. You cannot change that people prefer to win than to lose. Therefore you cannot defeat the blue donut.

I might also point out that blue donut logic only really applies in sovereign nullsec. You can escape by playing somewhere else. CFC can hellcamp an NPC station or two if they want, but this does not change the big picture that 99% of them are free. It's a big sandbox.

As for strategies for effective change, I would put my hope into lobbying CCP. The blue donut is not in their interest because it is boring. Perhaps they'll let it go for one more massive war as CFC crushes PL or N3 or both, whatever. But eventually they will act to change the rules.

Gevlon said...

@Von Keigai: numbers only cause you to win timers. You can fight other ways. Li3 collapsed right now under the weight of "pirates" and had to be reconstructed and buffed up with GENTS remains.

CCP already gave siphons and that rat-bounty-stealing thing that is banned in WH space. People just don't use it, despite a solo PvP could.

folgsam said...

The state between CFC and PL should tell you one thing: They dont have as much resources as they claim and doing damage to them will make an impact.

If they were as rich as they claimed, they would wage war against each other, as perpetual war is mostly driven by a constant influx of ships and modules.

Lucas Kell said...

"Your efforts, measured in PvP kills and ISK are needed"
This right here is why you'll never win. It's nothing new for us to be losing ships. We've had people killing us for years (look at 401k for example), and those kills simply get rolled into the operating costs of running an alliance. You would need to be hitting trillions per day for it to make an impact.

I do have to ask about your choice of example too. You know that Mordus Angels is a for fun, social, and even partially a role playing alliance right?

Gevlon said...

@Lucas: CCP published that the daily total production of whole EVE is 3T. So "making trillions a day" is an overstatement.

"So poor that grinds structures in bombless bombers" is much more accurate.

Anonymous said...

People do use siphons a lot actually, we just got good at removing them and discouraging people from dropping them in the first place.

Oh and those brave solo pvpers that deploy them kind of never show up to pick them up.

folgsam said...

For an anecdotal estimation read the eve reddit. Many goons post there, always astounded about losses in the low single digit billion isk range. The average goon is poor and can only dream about having a few billion isk wealth in total.

Anonymous said...

The average goon is poor? Youd need some actual evidence to back that up, since even according to this blog they make huge sums of isk ratting. They are also on double srp, so any losses they have during a battle they actually make isk from. Its nice to think that they might be but at some point you have to face reality. How can you ever hope to defeat them if you arent even willing to learn facts about their situation?

Thats why they are still so big because everyone fighting them just likes to pretend they are weak and poor instead of knowing their enemy. Thats why i quit fighting null people and just move to a wormhole.

Gevlon said...

@Anonymous: According to the public killboards an average GSF pilot lost 700 million ISK (not B):

While you can assume they could bear much higher losses, it's reasonable to believe that 700M loss per year is significant for an average Goon. That's a sum that a highsec miner would laugh off.

Anonymous said...

Im confused. Why is it reasonable to believe that 700m is significant to a goon while insignificant to a highsec miner? Did you miss off a bit that explained that? As far as i know you can make more being afk ratting in null than a highsec miner can make, so it would be reasonable to think that whatever a highsec miner would laugh off a goon would also laugh off. Or am i missing something?

Gevlon said...

Because if it would be insignificant, Goons would put more assets to the line and lose more. They lose only 700M because they can't afford to lose much more.

Anonymous said...

Bombless bombers are used because they are play to win, not play for fun. If you are taking a tower and that tower makes x profit a month and your fleet is worth 12x, then one fleet welp on that tower means it will take a whole year to breakeven. It's just common sense to use to cheapest and more risk mitigating tactic which is bombers, it shit and boring and hated, but it's the play to win move.

Also, the blue donut exist because of dominion mechanics, not because of social. Newsflash: thousands of people in the CFC hate the goons. The CEO of my corp openly jokes of hating goons and wishing they/we get smashed in the next war. No one likes being a pet, they resent it. And true goons probably hate their pubbie allies just as much, but grin through a forced smile for diplomacy's sake. It's tolerated only because the alternative of being independent of not viable at this time.

Von Keigai said...

Because if it would be insignificant, Goons would put more assets to the line and lose more.

It is insignificant in the big picture. Average people are not trying to build pixel wealth. They are playing to have fun, and so they subscribe (ergo, don't have to grind PLEX), and they grind out ISK only enough to fund what they want to do. When a Goon loses a ship in highsec to his own idiocy and/or your hired guns, that means he has to spend a few hours grinding anoms semi-AFK out in null. So he does.

Gevlon said...

@Von Keigai: if that's true, the Goon leadership is just dumb with that high SRP. They could send out fleets without SRP and if a ship is lost, the Goonie will "has to spend a few hours grinding anoms semi-AFK out in null. So he does."

Anonymous said...

Thorn bomber (what you refer to as "bomber-less bombers") are more than just a way to save costs during a structure grind. They offer other advantages, hence their popularity. Atlas was using thorn bombers several years ago, along with TEST and AAA.

First off, there is the cost of the ship itself, 25 mil as opposed to 60 mil for a BC or 250 mil for a BS. So yes, bombers are cheaper, yet to a structure can do comparable damage. Additionally, a bomber is easier to train into than a battleship, even assuming you don't use T2 weapons on either ship. So cheaper is a factor, coupled with easier to train.

Additionally, bombers are easier on logistics. Apart from cost and size difference (you can jump freighter in a lot more bombers in one load than battleships.) Jump portals and jump bridges require fuel. The fuel cost is based on the mass of the ship traveling through the portal or being bridged. A bomber is about 1/70th the mass of a battleship. Using thorn bombers eases the burden on logistics.

And speaking of cost, one of the big strategies in SOV warfare is to blueball and bore your enemy. Bombers can run from a fight faster than a BS or BC, making this task easier. Additionally, those killed add little to an enemy killboard. A 100 BSes grinding a structure will attract attention, dreads more so. A 100 bombers... Not as much. Forming a counter fleet against bombers is not as fun as killing 100 BCs, BSes, or large items.

As for being bombless, they have a bomb launcher. The request and fit are tight enough to keep the launcher offline. Why... Having 100 in fleet near each other with active launchers is asking for trouble. Keeping the launcher offline till needed mitigates some of the dangers.

So please, stop treating the thorn bomber as if it is some crazy Goon idea to be cheap. Thorn bombers have been around since before goons were out if their rifters, have been used by far more Nul groups than just Goons, and are a choosen for reasons beyond just being cheap to fly. In fact, thorn bombers are a great way for a new alliance to try nul sov grinding without as much risk as a BS or dread fleet, which helps fight the blue donut.

Provi Miner said...

We've been fighting since the return, MOA? the little guy? Need more friends? No chance? Come on goblin you're better than this. Providence fights and fights and fights. Everyday members of the blue doughnut show up on providence kill boards. Granted it isn't much Goon action there, mostly their pets but we sill kill them. You want a chance come to providence join up and get to kill "blue doughnut" every day.

Von Keigai said...

Gevlon, those rat-bounty things and siphons are pretty awful as "conflict drivers". If it were up to me, I'd remove both; they are both needless complexity. CCP needs to look at things at a much more basic level than trying to instigate an occasional small gank or little theft (which is what those amount to). Offhand, I'd say the single most useful thing they could do to encourage interesting small fights is to nerf cynos. I admit I don't fully understand how things work in nullsec having not been there, but it is my impression that essentially any ship out there can possibly be a trap; you engage, they fire a cyno, and seconds later there are arbitrary enemy forces present. I can't imagine anything less fun than carefully arranging a winning position in a small gang fight and then boom, you lose. No wonder nobody fights. I would also find it quite annoying if, every time I went out on a roam, I had to arrange to a capital fleet on standby just in case.

As for numbers "only" causing you win timer fights: well, yeah. Timer fights and also any other random tidi-fueled mega fights. Kind of like saying that in 1944-5, numbers "only" allowed the winning side to advance and occupy the enemy's country and capital city. But Panthers were technically superior to any tank in the world until the 1950s! Uh huh.

When you win all the timer fights, you win wars, because the timer fights determine something important: who gets to use the local stations, POSes, etc. Who gets to profit from the moons; who gets to use or rent the space. And perhaps just as important, losing the fights generally shows that one side is superior; therefore the other will not re-engage because they know they'd just lose again.

Provi Miner said...

Don't forget why Gents imploded, you might see some interesting kill stats from vale of the silent if you were to look at the weeks leading to their fall.

Von Keigai said...

Gevlon, no, that would discourage people from joining fleets. Yes, many of them would grind out just enough to buy the new ship. That would be because spending time in F1-fleets is "what they want to do". But many would be deterred by the grinding -- that's why it's called grinding; it's a grind. It's not fun. If it costs them no grinding, they will do time in fleets; if it costs them grinding, they don't. Again, my point here is that average people are doing the minimum to get by. By having lavish SRP, the Goon leadership raise the amount of time-in-fleet they can get from their average member.

It's also worth pointing out that, unless Dinsdale is right and there is a conspiracy between Goons and CCP to allow them to RMT on the downlow, there's not much for them to do with all that pixel wealth they get. They can spend it on SRP to increase their in-game power or... what? Pile up PLEX?

Gevlon said...

@Anonymous: bombless bombers aren't a replacement for battleships, they are replacing dreadnoughts. Like 15 of them replaces one.

@Von Keigai: you can't claim at the same time that
- regrinding a fleet ship would hurt members
- regrinding some highsec loss would not hurt members

You can't enforce timer fights on "pirates" who hit ratters, small fleets, travellers from lowsec, NPC null, wormholes or even highsec.

Von Keigai said...

Gevlon, I don't claim that. Grinding hurts, by definition. Otherwise it would be called "playing" or something else.

What we are arguing about is the "significance" of loss. You are claiming significance, as in: you can defeat the Goons. I say you cannot.

Duncan Ringill said...

Ten thousand players slap their foreheads in unison, according to the fantasy in the OP, and simultaneously grimace as they say, "What? You mean in nullsec I could just shoot them?"

The people who care about the status quo in nullsec, or the tipping thereof, are already out there, or on their way there, or about to subscribe, replacing those who leave the game. Absent good reasons to adopt radically new play styles, players are going to keep doing what brings them the most fun and/or least heartache.

Malcolm Shinhwa said...

"When two dreamers start to cooperate, only their dreaming efficiency increases."

Eve is like no other game. Stop bitching about the things/players you don't like and start screwing with them. You can actually do that here. Instead of sitting chomping on scordite in some wretched hisec system, get in an interceptor and kill nullbears daily, nightly, and ever so rightly*.

* except CFC allies. especially TNT. Please don't kill my VNI.