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It’s Odd I See

May 2, 2013

Hi All,

I’ve been thinking (uh-oh) about the upcoming expansion. Going to whack in a disclaimer or two right here an now: much of the suppositions I’ll be making are based partly on the information gleaned from postings from people to attended Fanfest. Envious that I couldn’t go, and somewhat relieved too. Expensive to travel half the world for just a week – not to mention to the 24 hours+ travel time required in each direction. I digress.

I was looking forward to Odyssey being an expansion up with the very best of them, but now I’m not so sure. This is one to watch and see, due to the sheer amount of changes going on – but it’s also something of a set up expansion for what is to come later on, meaning we’re not seeing any one single HOLY CRAP! feature.

All of that said, the changes appear to come together as an economic driver from CCP to boost null relative to high sec – and hopefully to create more conflict. It’s also a method of breaking the technetium cartel down somewhat and redistributing moon goo more to enable T2 production, with the advent of the new materials and changes to blueprints. Can’t seem to find it explicitly stated, but I would hope that the new racial carbides are aligned (mostly) regionally. I would imagine CCP would be quite happy for scrapping to occur over the new resources, and with the revaluing of the R64s. Investing in scan probes might not be a bad idea….

Part of the issue with null has been the mining/compression/transport of low end ores to null from high sec. With the huge buffs to tritanium, pyerite and mexallon from the high end ores, coupled with the pretty massive changes to outposts, we are likely to see a sizable reduction in the reliance null has on high sec. Of concern: the dev blog specifically states low and null. What about the ores found in WH space…?

As far as all of this goes, if this revitalizes null sec as a place to be (rather than using alts in high sec to make iskies), and more wars, then it’s a very good thing. Anyone who suggests that null sec is vital by comparison needs to seriously go and read Poetic’s weekly stat dump. Some null sec regions do not even make it into triple digits for the week as far as kills goes, others barely into the two hundreds. While this must be acknowledged as cherry picking, the fewest numbers of kills was in Oasa with 36 for an entire week. An ENTIRE week.  Paragon Soul was not much better at 44.  Various wormhole systems were more dangerous than that. The two highest number of kills were the Forge at 7173 (partly pushed up by RvB numbers) and Black Rise 6850 (Faction Warfare).

If this doesn’t suggest that a lot of null sec is moribund right now, I don’t know what will. The stats are hugely interesting once you start having a good look btw. Go here.

Low sec is even more of a last pick lester due to the new tag dropping rats in the belts. I can appreciate CCP wanting to have a better path for people to restore their sec status, but low sec belts? That’s adding yet another reason for PvP oriented ships to lurk there. Miners are an endangered species in low as it is. Changing the grav sites so that anyone can find them immediately on entering the system makes things even worse (again – whats going to happen in WH space?). Low sec needs a buff. A serious, serious buff. Not this.

The migration of ice from belts I suspect to also have an engagement/conflict driver behind the change. The belts were to all intents and purposes an unlimited resource previously. Now, with depletion and refresh every four hours we will start seeing pressure on the more popular belts as well as across TZ.  Given the US and EU zones have the greatest population, coupled with the halving in ice mining cycle time, we may see those belts run out fast. It will be interesting to see how this is implemented in any case, and how the playerbase evolves to cope with it. The concern has already been raised about a single warp in point on scanning the ice. Parlez-vous Smartbomb?

The ship changes have me in two minds. There is the inevitable power creep that has come in with the improvement to the T1 frigates and up through the ship classes, such that I’m not sure how they will progress with the larger T1/T2 hulls. Mind you, it could also mean sub-cap fleets become just that much more dangerous when compared with cap/supercaps… There is also a significant move to standardize the number of total high/mid/low slots, which has resulted in the dropping of a utility high slot in more than one case. Essentially, this means less opportunity of customization and more cookie cutter builds. Fine for fleet doctrine I suppose, but not so much for small gang or individual pvp.

That said, it’s a huge undertaking. The fact that CCP has managed to move though the various proposed hull changes to date with (relatively) little rabid frothing from the player base says to me that they’ve done extremely well as far as engagement and communication with us goes. A loooooong way from the summer of rage. They should get some major kudos to the management to date 🙂

Now, exploration. My baby. I said at the beginning this appears to be an expansion that is setting the ground work for up and coming things. Lots of other folks have already said how this particular part of Odyssey is received will depend on implementation and I totally agree. While I like the idea of a system scanner that pings when you hit system, I don’t believe we should be dumbing things down. H has the cartographer elite skill under her belt, which is all sorts of painfully long training time. In practical terms, I’ve also spent considerable effort in trying to sort probe patterns versus ease of use when resizing/moving to be as quick as possible (there is a hell of a lot of competition out there – #$%& Tengu). If the automated system is too good, I won’t be terribly happy. The hacking mini-game seems like something of an add on or placeholder, and the spawning of the containers… well, we’ll see.

So. Odyssey as a whole – I think it’s a wait and see. In and of its own right, and at this point, it’s a middle of the road expansion imho. But as far as the groundwork it lays for future expansions, it could be a major change indeed.





From → Eve Online

One Comment
  1. An analysis of nullsec mining changes in Odyssey – and from someone who knows better than I

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