28 February 2011

It's the End of the Eve as We Know It

Welcome to the twenty-fifth installment of the EVE Blog Banter, the monthly EVE Online blogging extravaganza created by CrazyKinux. The EVE Blog Banter involves an enthusiastic group of gaming bloggers, a common topic within the realm of EVE Online, and a week or so to post articles pertaining to the said topic. The resulting articles can either be short or quite extensive, either funny or dead serious, but are always a great fun to read! Any questions about the EVE Blog Banter should be directed to crazykinux@gmail.com. Check for other EVE Blog Banter articles at the bottom of this post!

This month's topic comes to us from @Tetraetc - "Tetra's EVE Blog" - who asks:
"Have Alliances and the sovereignty system limited the amount of PVP and RP potential in Null sec? Imagine a Null Sec where anyone could build outposts wherever. Would the reduction of the alliance game mechanic, and the removal of the sovereignty game mechanics (or the modifcation of it from Alliance level to Corp level for that matter) force more PVP into Null sec, or would giant power blocs like the NC still form themselves?"

 This blog banter asks way too many and way too confusing questions.
  1. Do alliances and sovereignty limit the PvP potential in null-sec?
  2. Do alliances and sovereignty limit the role-playing potential in null-sec?
  3. Would the reduction of the alliance mechanic force more PvP?
  4. Would the removal of sovereignty force more PvP?
  5. Would the move of sovereigny from alliances to corps force more PvP?
  6. If any of the above three changes occurred, would power blocs still exist?
I'm gonna deal with these systematically, because these questions doesn't flow particularly well.

First of all, do alliances and sovereignty limit the PvP potential of null-sec?  No.  Alliances do not limit the potential of PvP in null-sec.  I believe that this actually allows for more PvP, because groups of players are more organized.  I will point to my own M.Pire alliance as an example.  We have a number of different corporations within our alliance: M.Corp Academy, M.Corp, M.Corp Germany, M.Corp Engineering, and M.Corp Ascension.  If we had to perform all of our functions within one corporation, the situation would be rather confusing.  With the alliance mechanic, M.Pire can splinter its operations and thus have less confusion result.  M.Corp Academy trains the new players; M. Corp handles the PvP; M. Corp Germany allows our German players to speak German with each other; M.Corp Engineering mines and industries (I've now coined that as a verb); and M.Corp Ascension handles the administrative alliance duties such as sov structures and system upgrades.  Some could argue that removing the alliance mechanic would cause different corporations to fight one another, but in reality, this would just cause more headaches for diplomats who need to set even more people blue.

Next up, do alliances and sovereignty limit the role-playing potential in null-sec?  No.  Alliances allow for more organized groups of role-players to band together and fight for a common cause.  In fact, I'm sure they get a kick out of dramatized alliance politics when hardliner Amarr slavers and pro-slavery Minmatar have slight disagreements.  Also, as we saw with CVA, sov-holding can contribute greatly to the role-playing by allowing fiery supporters of each faction to "gain space" in 0.0 for their respective overlords.  The reason this model doesn't work is because there will always be fewer role-players than real-players, so role-playing alliances will constantly face superior numbers while competing for precious 0.0 space.

Moving right along, would the reduction of the alliance mechanic force more PvP?  Here, I'm not quite sure what the "reduction of the alliance mechanic" would imply.  For the sake of this argument, let us suppose that it means no more alliances.  Yes.  The elimination of alliances would result in much more PvP.  At first, former alliances would try to blue up, but as individual pilots began to identify more and more strongly with their corp rather than "alliance," combat would escalate until there was fighting everywhere.  Three cheers for pew!

Down the list more, would the removal of sovereignty force more PvP?  If anyone at all considers this a solution, shame on them.  Absolutely not.  Some would like to think that corporations, freed from having to hold space, would roam the galaxy in search of pew.  This is a terrible assumption.  Supposing that everyone didn't unsubscribe after this terrible change, PvP would definitely decline, because pilots would have nothing to fight for.  An endless stream of "goodfights" will never make up for the loss of motivation that would result from the inability to own space.

Coming up next, would the move of sovereignty from the alliance to the corp force more PvP?  An interesting proposition, and I think yes.  First of all, this would remove the need for alliances, except for organizational purposes.  Then, as I stated above, corporations would soon grow more nationalistic and fight amongst each other.  In addition, corporations would want to seek more lebensraum for themselves at the expense of ex-alliance mates.  I do not, however, support this mechanic change.

Finally, with any of these changes, would power blocs still form?  Yes.  In Eve Online, bigger is always better.  To gain an advantage of their opponents, corporations would grow larger and larger.  Eventually, it would be more convenient to team up with other corporations rather than to grow even larger.  As much as I hate to say it, until the Dominion sov mechanics are changed, power blocs are a way of life.  Eve is like the real world more so than any other game, and thus there is greater safety in numbers.

Fly safe!


  1. Boom! Hull-Shot?: It's the End of the Eve as We Know It
  2. sered's lives: EVE Blog Banter #25 - Size does matter
  3. 25th EVE BB – Medieval Solutions to Spaceship Problems | Inventions of a New Eden Industrialist
  4. More to come...

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