Sunday, March 2, 2008

Stop Whining About Suicide Ganking!

High security space suicide ganks have been a part of the game since its inception. Why is it suddenly such a game breaking problem now in the eyes of the forum rabblers? Barely a day goes by where there's not another page of posts complaining about suicide gankers. This week it's the Goons' targetting of exhumers mining in high sec. Six months ago, it was Outbreak ganking freighters, something now considered a common threat. Since when did EVE become about anything but surviving in an extremely hostile universe?

CONCORD has never provided protection, only consequences, kindof know...real police.

More to come.


  1. Have you actually read any of these posts on the forums? Or are you simply commenting on the thread title and the normal troll posts?

    First of all, most eve players that own an exhumer has played long enough to be well aware of the dangers associated with eve and the purpose of concord. Concord isn't there to protect but to enforce the consequences of a players actions. In this case, it is the destruction of the suicide gankers ship.

    The issue that is trying to be discussed by the industrialists is the current "lack of consequences" currently being administered to suicide gankers.

    So the trolls on the forums are claiming that losing a ship to concord is enough consequence for the suicide gank but if you look a little more closely
    you will find the ship loss is pretty mininal. For example, the typical ship being used to gank is a brutix gank fitted with t1 components. When that ship is destroyed by concord, its full cost is refunded by insurance. Total loss to the ganker, 10 mil isk to buy new insurance and a small hit to his security rating. Total loss to the exhumer pilot, hulk + fittings + rigs, average loss is about 200 mil isk.

    And you may ask, the ganker is still losing 10 mil isk to rebuy insurance and will probably not recover that amount on the dropped loot or salvage. So why is he doing it? One theory has to do with the recent price decline of exhumers. Hulk was recently on sale for 90 mil isk, which is the lowest in history. Now the supply v demand curve is being shifted since 30 hulks are being ganked per day. Maybe there is a resourceful shipbuilder in jihadswarm that is contracting this activity, maybe there is another reason. Who really knows?

    One poster on the forums actually gave some useful advice. Follow the lead of miners in lowsec/0.0. Fit WCS's, align to a safespot, pay attention, etc. Ok, those things will help with the problem but now a mining ship has to waste slots that were used to fit mining upgrades, pdu's, expanded cargoholds, etc which directly affects his isk/hour. And this still doesn't guarantee that a MWD fitted BC doesn't catch him and interrupt his warp out.

    Another tactic a miner uses in low/0.0 is to bring some pvp ships along as protection. This is not an option in hisec. As soon as the pvp ship engages the ganker, he is now going to be concorded as well and still won't guarantee that the miner won't be killed.

    The only assistance a miner can get from another player is a shield transfer which is usually much too slow to help a ship that is being attacked by a high dps ganker.

    The suggestions being made by the industrialists on the forums are simply geared towards creating more consequences for a gankers actions. These include: eliminating insurance payout for a player v player concord ship loss (it will cost the ganker about 40 mil isk for the gank), more security loss for a suicide gank in highsec (if you look at the jihadswarm killboard, you will see that some gankers have over 20 kills in one week and they are still allowed in hisec), increasing the difficulty of raising your security rating than simply ratting for a few days (ratting really isn't punishment since the ganker is still collecting rat bounties and loot).

    Eve is based on the premise of risk v reward. And right now the risk of a miner losing his ship versus the reward of about 6 mil/isk per hour in hisec is pretty imbalanced. Versus the risk of a ganker, 10 mil insurance loss v the loot dropped and profit gained by the industrialist hiding behind this activity.

  2. Some interesting points, but the fact remains that there is a lot of whining that has come about as a result of suicide ganking that has a much more uncertain risk to reward scenario. Moreover, this kind of suicide gank is something new, I feel. Realistically, the ganker can't expect to get much out of the kill. The only real chance for profit is if the Hulk is running a Gistii shield booster or something similar. Even if there is profit potential, it can't be consistently able to keep up with the profitability of lower risk activities.

    You bring up an interesting point with risk vs. reward, but the prevailing trend at this point is the belief that risk v reward is broken in high sec, and that something should be done about it. If this sort of ganking represents an evening of the playing field, or even slanting of it in favor of those who take the extra effort to exist in low/null sec, is that necessarily a bad thing?

    In all honesty, almost any time a miner that gets blown up, they did something wrong, be it not watch local in lowsec or pick a high traffic system in high sec that is prone to gank activity. There's lots of space out there, and there are solutions beyond asking CCP to step in. If CCP steps in, I think it's only fair that they boost the earning potential of zero and lowsec to bring it more in line, or else we'll see a continuing trend of people moving back to high sec.

    I was admittedly a bit harsh on those who are talking on the forums, but I still feel that the situation is still being looked at crossways.

  3. I agree with you that lowsec has many problems that need to be addressed i.e. risk v reward. The ores in lowsec are really no better than in hisec and the missions don't pay a lot more than the same missions in hisec. While the player is always at risk that some pirate gang will warp in and pop you.

    I am not so sure that 0.0 is in the same situation though since most people that live there are part of a corp/alliance that provide the infrastructure needed to survive there (risk is much lower) and the rewards are much greater (best ore in the game, best rats in the game, etc).

    If CCP took a hard look at lowsec and made some adjustments such as moving some 0.0 ore into lowsec and doubling the rewards for missions, that might motivate some players to move there or at least bring a gang to support the industrialists. And this would be justified by higher reward potential.

    Given the current mechanics in hisec, it is actually safer to mine in lowsec/0.0 since a miner can actually protect himself in a proper gang which isn't currently possible in hisec.

    In my opinion, the mechanics are currently broken in hisec and are heavily slanted to the suicide ganker. (insurance, security rating, lack of a proper way to defend yourself, etc). I can live with a 30 mil isk ship suiciding a solo indy carrying 150 mil isk of goods. Or 4 gank BS's popping a faction BS carrying several billion in faction modules. But a ganker with a max liability of 10 million isk ganking 20x200 mil isk ships a week and still not be declared a criminal? Or the inability for a mining/transport to properly protect himself against gankers?

    Eve should penalize the players that do stupid things. But not make it impossible for the smart player to try to transact business.

  4. Well okay two problems with your post (anonymous player *eyeroll*)

    The fact that suicide bombers have little repercussions is what MAKES them suicide bombers. Had they had to use CCC rigged CNR's with officer mods they wouldn't go do it.
    However, compare it with real life. Since when do people rob banks and corner stores with solid-gold/platinum diamond encrusted desert eagles instead of a random low-grade glock pulled from a gun shop probably 2 blocks from the place?

    Geez. Use. Logic.

    Second, I'm willing to bet a bunch of those exhumers lost have something to do with the huge ISK-realmoney trade on the net, so not much of a loss.

    Curiously, (not an accusation, but I'm honestly wondering) do you happen to be a spokesperson for those in the latter-mentioned trade?

  5. I am afraid you don't understand the motivation for people to commit crimes in the first place. They are usually motivated by a big score for little work. But they are fully aware that if they get caught, then they will have to pay for their actions. And that is where the current eve mechanics fail.

    To apply the current eve mechanics to your example. The robbers insurance company would reimburse him for the gun that the police confiscated. He would be fined $100 and set free. And lastly, he would be able to commit 20 crimes a week and still walk the streets like a normal citizen. And lastly, the bank wouldn't be allowed to have guards to protect it. Sounds logical?

    If you reviewed the jihadswarm killboards, you would see normal character names that belong to normal player corporations. Not your typical macro name like xxssggy. And if that doesn't convince you that these targets aren't isk farmers, then message some of the names on the killboard.

    And to answer your last question, no i am not an isk seller. But i do have an industrialist character that i am currently finding next to impossible to protect given the current mechanisms of the game. And if you read the forums, you will find many other players with similar concerns.

  6. I think the Goon thing is upsetting because of their use of the Term Jihad and Terrorism. Even if they are just doing it to grad some attention.

    JihadSwarm - Martyr's who will get 72 virgins - Killboard

    Comments on the Forums like...
    allah will punish you for your insolence
    allahu ackbar - Dai Nau - GoonSwarm

  7. Hmm... well fair enough then.
    Never checked their killboards, but I was kind of hoping I'd be right about them killing iskfarmers.
    I mean, if you were going to suicide gank, at LEAST rid the world of some vermin?

    I retract my statements, though I still believe that there should be some degree of ease that this can be accomplished. It just feels real and sandboxy to be able to do something like this (though perhaps not with the current level of EXTREME ease) and it just wouldn't be right to do away with it.

    So, I now have to agree with your "lack of consequences arguement".
    If CONCORD would respond faster, and the sec-hit bigger, this might work.

    On a side note, can one use rep-drones in hisec?
    It might work if you had a buddy or two with rep drones / remote rep on you at all times to tank suicide gankers.

    "I think the Goon thing is upsetting because of their use of the Term Jihad and Terrorism. Even if they are just doing it to grad some attention."
    I totally agree.

    Crovan, if you think my pompous opinionated self is turning your blog into an EVE-O forum clone, gimme a heads up and I'll shut up.

  8. I guess we are kind of turning this blog into a eve-online forum but at least there is sensible argument here compared to the avg troll poster on eve-online that only knows how to respond with "This is how eve works. If you don't like it then quit and give me your stuff".

    Concord already responds in a certain max time based on the security of the system. For example, if you are in a 0.5 system and concord doesn't happen to be in your system, then it can take them up to 25 seconds to respond.

    And believe me that the gankers know this and will purposely suicide a ship in another system to draw concord away from the system with miners in order to have the full 25 seconds to complete their job.

    Repair drones do work in hisec but the combination of a cruiser fitted with shield transfer + repair drones would still have a hard time keeping up with a 700 DPS ganker.

    There are a few other mechanics in this game that i don't quite understand that would relieve this problem. And that is the ability to defend a fleetmate against attack without concord repercussions.

    But as it stands now, i can be in a corp, in a fleet, in an alliance, etc and nobody can attack the ganker without being concorded.

    But if that ganker happens to steal from my can, then my corp/alliance can attack him.

    So i guess can's are more important than an actual player in my corp.

  9. A very easy way to protect an exhumer from suicide ganking:

    1. Fit an omni-tank of some kind on the exhumer

    2. Have a friend (or alt) in a Basilisk or Osprey outfitted to shield transfer while still being cap-stable...I think this is relatively easy to do with a Basilisk

    3. Simply have your friend/alt sit next to you in said ship with shield transfers on and with shield transfer drones. It will now take much more effort to suicide gank you.

  10. I guess using a basilisk is an option but i doubt many miners have an alt with a logistics ship.

    I tried fitting an osprey in that role and the only way it would work is if it was cap injected. So i guess the player would have to be pretty quick to move to his osprey, target the ganker, flip on the shield transfers and start the cap injection.

    Another option is to have an alt with a blackbird to jam the ganker. Of course he would die to concord but at least he would save a 200 mil exhumer.

    Kind of sad that exhumer owners have to go to these extremes to keep his ship alive.

  11. Oops. Wrong on the Osprey. He should already have the Hulk targeted. So he would need to flip on the shield transfer and cap injector.

  12. As a carebear, I'm not a fan of this happening. However, I do more prefer for CCP to maybe give the miners more tools to protect themselves (and other suicide gank targets), than exist.

    In this situation I suppose, Concord is actually on the ganker's side in a wierd way. Because it guarentees the attacker the initiative. In low sec/0.0, if you see an enemy warp in, you can take the initiative and attack them first. Whereas, in high sec, you have 2 choices. Warp out to safespot or dock, or move on and hope they don't follow you. As this is often a griefer tactic (at least the attacks on hulks), I tend to think they might do the second.

    My corp has considered maybe setting up a support drake or something, to run a full cap recharge setup, with a mining link and a full rack of shield transfers. It might work, but realistically its not going to work all that well. Especially if you have to cover a bunch of gang mates. A logistics ship is an option, but only if you have high enough skills to use it. Shield transfer battleship might work too.

    Personally, I'd just like to see a valid counter to high alpha strike put into the game. There is only so much that you can tank some ships, and others like freighters, you can't tank at all. Maybe something like remote resist modules, or remote armor/shield/hull buffer modules. Definetly would encourage group work more as well, over the solo miner/transport solution.

    However, this might have negative consequences in PvP. Might help prolong fights if done well, and an increase reliance on FCing skill as you have to switch targets more, be unpredictable, as well as guide your own defences.

  13. I agree with the sentiment of the post here - all too often constructive criticism on eve-o seems to get totally buried under threats of quitting the game due to it being unfair or against the rules (?!?)

    I mean, is it that hard to go dock up if you see a goon enter local? Since they're primarily targetting Hulks, you should be relatively safe if you use the opportunity to haul what you have in your can back to station while you wait for the goon to pass through. While it may be inconvenient, the one thing I've learned in my short time playing EVE is that you should never assume that you're safe, ever. In fact, that's a big part of the appeal of the game for me. Moaning about it because you're too lazy to watch local or make sure you're aligned while mining is silly - these are things you should be doing anyway, in my opinion.

    However, I do think there could be some merit to the posts about the punishments perhaps not being what they could. It's hard to argue against getting at least a reduced insurance payout if you are killed by CONCORD rather than by rats or another player.

    My personal opinion is that insurance cost should be inversely proportional to your security status - this would more accurately reflect real life in that the higher "risk" you are to the insurer, the higher premium you must pay to be covered. I understand that ratting for a few hours can clear your security status though so it's clearly not perfect, but I certainly prefer the idea of insurance being scalable on some measure of the risk you pose to yourself over simply having the binary solution of either being paid or not that's been proposed so far.

    I'd be interested to see if anyone else has posted something along the lines of my idea. To be honest, I can only get so far with most threads in eve-o before I get bored to tears of all the so-called "rabblage" so maybe I'll try again in a bit to see.

  14. Mertannia: I largely agree with you here, but I for one think that higher insurance costs, while it would be more realistic and would decrease the viability of suicide ganking for profit, it would have a lower impact on those doing it to grief.

    There are some tools in place already to help miners, i.e. local chat and an abundance of systems in which to mine. That said, and after reading some of the suggestions, more could and probably should be done to prevent this getting out of hand.

    The Drone Bay Pilot sums up my opinion on this type of problem, I think. Like I said there, we are getting boy who cried wolf syndrome now that there may be a legitimate problem. Most of us just roll our eyes since people have been complaining until blue in the face about freighter ganking since TOXIN pulled off the first one months ago.

  15. True, although one could argue that EVE is a game that encourages griefing and, as such, shouldn't do too much to remove it entirely. The idea behind my model was to make it slowly become less and less financially viable over time; not to remove or massively decrease griefing but to blunt the likelihood of any one person griefing for any sustained period of time.

    I take your point though; it probably wouldn't be enough in itself to stop what Goonswarm are currently doing, for example, due to their massive membership levels meaning that even if a single person was effectively "priced out" of hunting miners, there would be plenty more able to fill his shoes without penalty.

  16. Empire players should be able to buy extra protection (faster response time) or a panic button from Concord. Make it expensive but it would be something some people would want to spend the money on. Buy it buy the hour or per response.

  17. Just monitoring local isn't a solution since the players participating in this jihad may be other corps in the goonsfleet alliance as well as other griefing corps that have copycatted this idea.

    There are many interesting ideas being presented in this blog but the bottom line is that there needs to be some adjustments made to the "lack of consequences" and/or the ability to protect oneself in hisec.

    Without that, anybody is basically a sitting duck in hisec with little risk to the ganker.

  18. On another note, has anybody noticed the gang of 10 or more 1 day old trial account suicide kestrels waiting in Jita for anything of value to cross their paths?

    Yet another case of no risk v big reward.

  19. "[Insert Subject Here] has been a part of the game since its inception."

    Aside from the argument of wether or not it's a bad thing or a good thing, I'd like to point out that just because something has been a certain way since beta doesn't mean it ISN'T broken.

    And for the record: CONCORD has changed a lot since beta, just not much in the past couple years.

  20. Firstly, I think lowsec (a nod to some of the earlier comments) should not be changed in terms of risk vs reward, mainly due to the fact that lowsec is intended to be the "true lawless" as opposed to Empire and 0.0 (both have "big dogs" owning and covering everything)

    "I agree with the sentiment of the post here - all too often constructive criticism on eve-o seems to get totally buried under threats of quitting the game due to it being unfair or against the rules (?!?)"

    I agree with that sentiment. Not only do people see every nerf-like change to the game as the end of the world, there is little constructive criticism, epsecially when one rules out all the "logical arguements" that are really just "I'm a selfish pot of lard and I want my stuff to be uber" in disguise.

    As a constant advocate of "fair" forum usage, I really want them to stop, but alas. Forum whiners will always be forum whiners.

    I think probably the best way (that comes to mind right now) is some sort of blanket "computer systems ban" on attacking civilian-like targets whom you are not at war with.

    Raising defense of ORE ships allows them to survive lowsec/0.0 rats too easily and raising insurance cost / lowering payout sort of steamrolls all the 90+ percent of us EVE players who don't sucide gank.

    It would be like a "don't use smartbombs near people" type of warning (remember those? before you clicked "don't show this again") but would instead just not allow the action.

    Sort of like "Concord has strictly prohibited this type of criminal activity and has placed failsafes to prevent it on your ship systems."

    Of course, the drawback is that it becomes hard to justify how a billion other things aren't "failsafe implemented".

    But, just an idea.

  21. Eve in my opinion is for every one, griefers, pirates, miners, traders, ect. I live and mine in Empire and I accept it is not safe and I change my playing style to reflect this. Goons are attacking miners? so what? if thats what they want to do so be it. (free choice is what makes this game great) They have not tryed to attack me yet but if they do thats a risk I take by playing eve and why I love playing eve. I now mine with local open, Goons set to -1 and aligned to warp to a station, something I only did when in 0.0. If this is not enough and they still manage to destroy my hulk then I'll have to re-think and learn from what they did, and continue mining. Changing the mechanics of the game to make me safer? no thanks.

  22. I was ganked in hisec in a retriever, not by GoonSwarm, but by a copycat. One of the three got away, but Concorde managed to kill two of them. They did not have time to podkill me. I went right baack to mining, this time with Concorde escort. Considering what I looted off of their wrecks and the insurance, I came out ahead. They couldn't come up with an original thought, and I'll bet they could measure their little boy penises a whole millimeter longer that day. If they did something new, clever or unique, I might even mention their corp and alliance name, but copycats don't deserve that kind of publicity. PS - The EVEMail to the ganker thanking him for the ammo, guns and equipment hopefully showed that their griefing attempt also failed.

  23. I am not anonymous, Mr Crovan. My name is Criswell. That's my post dated June 25. Can you fix this without actually posting this messagem, Mr Crovan? Thanks.

  24. If any of you people think the Goons do this stuff for any reason other than lulz, you're seriously misguided.

    They're not doing it because of dropping Hulk prices. They're not doing it to mock muslims. They're not doing it to raise veld prices.

    They're doing it because ganking the hell out of a ship that some risk-averse loser has spent 6 weeks mining veld for, for absolutely no reason, is really, really funny.