Category Archives: Null Sec

Black Sheep Done

The true enemy of organizations in null sec are not hostile in your systems, or SBUs on your gates, or bad fleet doctrines.

The real killer is entropy, the slow wasting away of your corporation or alliance or coalition until it is just a shell of its former self.

Me, September 2013

That was some “deep” insight from me after being in null sec for a little less than two years.  Still, it is true enough, and the story of null sec has its share of tales about once mighty groups that wasted away from within then crumbled when the next crises that came along.  And that applies to any gaming group or guild in any game.  If people stop showing up for your party eventually the party is going to get cancelled.

This time it has come around to where I live.  In early December we got a note indicating that our corp, Black Sheep Down, would be closing up shop.

This was not a huge surprise.  We had never been a big group to begin with and never had as an aim to become one.  Our corp, born amongst some guild drama back in 2013, was an off-shoot of the first null sec corp I was in, BSC Legion.  It was actually the same tale of diminishing numbers and flagging participation that led a group to splinter off and form the new corp, Black Sheep Down.  I recorded all of this in a blog post, naturally enough.

EVE Online Black Sheep Down

Not really a logo, but something I threw together

Now, about six years down the road, the wheel has come around and the new corp has run down.

There was no need to rush off.  The corp will linger on in the alliance for a while to allow people to find a place to land and, as such, I stuck about for December.  I noticed that somebody had made me a corp director as part of this, clearly a mistake, and I abused this and spent some time making awards.  I paid for them, and awarded some to the old hands who were still around.  But there were also some SIG things going on in December and I didn’t want to leave until they were done because when you change corps in the Imperium it resets all your memberships and you have to go back and re-apply to everything.

Eventually though I will need a new corp, and with the new year upon us it is probably about time to get started.

There is a default choice.  A corp in TNT with the name Dynamite is acting as something of a consolidation option for some of the smaller groups, including our old corp BSC Legion, which showed back up in TNT after some adventures elsewhere, including a stint in Circle of Two alliance.

That is the easy option, one that maintains the status quo for me.  If I am not too keen on it as an option, it is mostly because I have been a pretty bad corp mate for the last few years.  I mostly fly with the SIGs and squads, and have since Reavers formed up a little over five years ago.  So not only do I not hang out of fly with my corp, I end up mostly playing in a very GSF-centric world.

So perhaps the obvious option would to find a spot in a GSF corporation.  That would solve a few deployment related issues, like stuff being listed on alliance contracts when I am not in that alliance or the ever popular “I linked it in alliance chat.”  I even have a 2008 date on my Something Awful account, so I could try to bluff my way into the inner sanctum of the true Goons that is GoonWaffe.  But I doubt I could pull it off.

Instead KarmaFleet is probably the best option.  They have taken half a dozen people I have thrown their way including SynCaine, Brent from VirginWorlds, and Darren of the old Common Sense Gamer.  I ought to have a chance there, and their participation requirements are low enough that even in the midst of peace time ennui I ought to be able to clear them without feeling pressured.

That would maintain the status quo for me… so long as I can get back into the various SIGs I was in.  I’m in a couple of informal ones that I fell into at one point or another that I will have to figure out.

But the status quo is a bit stale right now.  The Imperium isn’t in any wars and nothing appears to be on the horizon.  The latest “keep the troops happy” initiative involves running about in wormhole space.  Other than that there is homeland defense and the occasional roam.  But war and its relentless tempo is what has kept me going for much of my time in null sec.

So I could pack up all of my stuff, have it shipped to Jita, drop my affiliation with the Imperium, and go find a null sec group that is actually fighting… and who will take me.  Eight years in the CFC/Imperium makes me an unlikely spy, right?  Also, even after all of this time in New Eden and in null sec I am a bit of a scrub with an unimpressive kill board. I swear, if the average FC just shouted “Wilhelm, turn your UI back on!” two or three times during a fleet op they would very likely be correct in suggesting that I was once again “staring out the window” at space and spaceships with the UI hidden.  I just like looking at the game and the ships in flight and the pretty explosions sometimes… which can get in the way of things like putting reps on people.  My bad.  So I would need to find somebody desperate or with a low barrier to entry.

Then, leaving aside my dubious alliance history and lack of demonstrable game skill, who would even be worth joining?  TEST? Pandemic Horde?  Darkness?  Somebody else?  Where is the war at?  Which way to the front?

So something to think about here in the new year.

I do know that if I decide to dump the whole null sec thing I’ll probably just stop playing.  The territorial aspect of null sec, and the histories that have grown up around it, interest me in a way that missions or holiday events or random roams just to shoot strangers in the face completely fail to.

The November MER and the Surge in Outer Passage

The EVE Online monthly economic report is out for November so it is time to see if New Eden has settled down to a new “normal” now that the company seems to have finished with the “Chaos Era” and has laid off null sec nerfs for now.

The target for CCP for much of the year has been NPC bounty proliferation, so I we had best start there one more time.

November 2019 – Top Sinks and Faucets over time

NPC bounties appear to have settled at a new plateau that is a bit below where things had settled before the Chaos Era over the summer.  Chaos, with the Blackout, saw a very steep drop, but that recovered once local chat returned, with the cyno changes having a fairly small impact overall.  Blackout aside, the changes that CCP did between February and June appear to have had the biggest impact on NPC bounties.  The overall monthly numbers for 2019 so far:

  • January – 83.8 trillion
  • February – 69.8 trillion
  • March – 71.4 trillion
  • April – 57.2 trillion
  • May – 55.5 trillion
  • June – 48.2 trillion
  • July – 29.1 trillion
  • August – 21.1 trillion
  • September – 20.6 trillion
  • October – 41.5 trillion
  • November – 44.8 trillion

The surprise this month was which region ended up at the top of the list for NPC bounties.  The top ten regions for November were:

  1. Outer Passage – 6.30 Trillion
  2. Delve – 4.86 Trillion
  3. Branch – 2.95 Trillion
  4. Deklein – 2.91 Trillion
  5. Cobalt Edge – 2.51 Trillion
  6. Esoteria – 2.40 Trillion
  7. Fountain – 2.04 Trillion
  8. Tenerifis – 1.95 Trillion
  9. Omist – 1.50 Trillion
  10. Malpais – 1.35 Trillion

Delve, last month’s top of the list, was up a bit, having done 4.7 trillion ISK in October, but Outer Passage, went from third to first, jumping from 3.7 to 6.3 trillion ISK in bounties.

Who lives in Outer Passage?  Right now Circle of Hell owns most of the systems in the region, but Fraternity, evicted from the south, along with allies Blades of Grass and Lord of Worlds have moved into the south end of the region, and they have every reason to want to build up a fresh war chest now that they are being sheltered by PanFam and NCDot.

On the mining front things were more in line with the usual expectations, which is to say that Delve was at the forefront.

November 2019 – Mining value by region

The top ten region list for mining value in November was:

  1. Delve – 4.55 Trillion
  2. Esoteria – 2.43 Trillion
  3. Outer Passage – 2.00 Trillion
  4. Querious – 1.39 Trillion
  5. Domain – 1.14 Trillion
  6. The Forge – 993 Billion
  7. Malpais – 953 Billion
  8. The Kalevala Expanse – 910 Billion
  9. Feythabolis – 781 Billion
  10. Sinq Laison – 737 Billion

Compare that to the October top ten list:

  1. Delve – 3.7 trillion
  2. Esoteria – 2.2 trillion
  3. Querious – 1.19 trillion
  4. Domain – 1.19 trillion
  5. Fountain – 1.16
  6. The Forge – 1.1 trillion
  7. Malpais – 900 billion
  8. Lonetrek – 805 billion
  9. Cobalt Edge – 801 billion
  10. Metropolis – 795 billion

While Delve remained at the top, as with NPC bounties, Outer Passage again vaulted up the list, landing in third spot.  There is definitely some economic binging going on there.

Meanwhile high sec remained a viable mining location.  Overall, the amount of ore mined must have gone up fairly steeply, as not only are the numbers up for many regions, the price of minerals was down again for November, so the value or ore mined was less.

November 2019 – Economic Indices

While mineral prices are at a low point for recent history, the long term price indices shows that prices still remain above the all time low the New Eden economy saw back in 2010.

November 2019 – Economic Indices – Full History

The 2010 low point was related to the fact that, at the time, the drone regions in eastern null sec did not have NPC bounties.  Instead, the drone NPCs there, from which the area derives its name, used to drop minerals.  As such, to cash out of ratting there required hauling minerals to market in places like Jita.

As usual, you can find all the charts and the raw data available to download on the dev blog page for this MER.

Related economic posts:

The Holidays Come to EVE Online with Login Rewards and More

The Holiday season has started in New Eden as CCP kicked off the Naughty or Nice event early today at downtime.

Most of you have been naughty I am sure

Gone are the Yoiul Lads of old, replaced by the now familiar, and recently updated, daily login reward interface, which is the cornerstone of this year’s event.  There are 13 days of gifts to login and collect, though you have through until downtime on the morning of January 7th, 2020 to collect the last one, so you can miss a few days if you’re traveling to see family.

As usual, everybody gets a gift, but Omega clones get more each day.

Kicking of the Login Rewards

Of course, if you’re an Alpha clone (non-subscriber) there is a button right there to upgrade, and if you do you’ll be able to go back and collect any gifts you missed.

The daily gifts include many of the usual items like special holiday ship SKINs, festival launchers, snowballs, cosmetic items, and the like.

Contents of a Crate

But something new is in the mix, a series of travel filaments.  These will open up a portal that will take as many as 20 ships within a 6,000m radius of the activation to a location in null sec space.  If you want to have an exciting random roam with your friends, here is a chance for something new.  It might be enough to see if you can get back alive.

Also starting today is another even that will let players earn skill points daily.

Killing, chilling, whatever it is a spree

This is the return of the long running Skilling Spree event from the summer and fall, with a change.  Instead of logging on to blow up 1 to 10 NPCs every day, this time the goal is to hit the NPCs (or other players) with snowballs.  And the rewards vary rather than being just a simple skill point reward every day.  Sometimes it is skill points.

Easy enough on the Jita undock

Sometimes it is something else.

I could earn a filament

This, of course, means you will need snowballs, so don’t waste the ones you get from the Naughty or Nice boxes.  Also, if you have melted snowballs leftover from past years, because you’re like me and never clear out your hangar, you can take those to the Meltwater-Snowball Exchanger at Yoiul Festival Snowball Exchange stations in high sec space.  You can see beacons out for there, including in Jita, which is probably the most actively used one.

The beacons will lead you to a Meltwater snowball exchange station, which looks like a festive Astrahus.

Meltwater-Snowball Exchanger Astrahus

The exchange rate is 10 melted snowballs for 1 fresh snowball.

A melted snowball is just water, right? Can I give you water?

That sounds a bit steep, but then what is the value of a melted snowball really?

Or you might want to save your snowballs for the Luminaire Snowball Fight, which will take place on Sunday, December 15th, at 21:00 EVE Online time.

All in all, not a bad event.  There are no combat sites to run.  That sort of event seems to have fallen by the wayside, though with the Triglavian invasion still going more combat sites might be redundant.

I like that there are new SKINs, but I always like when there are new SKINs.

A Vexor wearing the Aurora Universalis SKIN

And the travel filaments… those should make for some fun.

Anyway, there is a post up about the events, though the details are a bit scant.

November in Review

The Site

Another quiet month when it came to traffic.  There was a spike at the start, because writing about Blizzard and BlizzCon will get you some attention.  But then writing about EVE Online or Daybreak games… that is pure death for traffic.  But I write about what I am interested in and what I am playing.

It was apparently also “internet picture posting month” or “inpipomo” or some such.  People were posting screen shots and keep count and that sort of thing.  I thought about joining in, but every month is picture posting month around here.  I am well past 100 for the month I am sure, but I’ll post one more just for luck.

SIEGED!

I’ll leave you to figure out what that even means.

One Year Ago

It was the end of days for WildStar.

I commemorated TorilMUD for having survived for 25 years, and did a post about the Castle Drulak zone on Evermeet.

I was looking back at the decade old VirginWorlds podcast dedicated to the Star Wars: The Old Republic announcement.

BlizzCon was on its way and I was projecting what we might see.  What we actually got… well, Diablo Immortal didn’t play well with fans, but we heard a lot about WoW Classic.  I went over why I felt fan expectations for Blizz are hopeless, but nobody listens.

I had finally schlepped my way to level 120 in Battle for Azeroth and collected my WoW 14th anniversary gifts.

In EVE Online, there was the very pretty Crimson Harvest event.  I was also showing off the swag I got from EVE Vegas. There was also an op out to Geminate to tangle with Pandemic Horde.

But mostly there was the Onslaught expansion, which landed mid-month and reduced the once mighty POS to just so many bubbles in space, though they still haven’t pulled them from the game a year later.  There were also daily login rewards and the activity tracker.

Project Nova, shown at EVE Vegas, had been postponed.

Daybreak was announcing The Burning Lands expansion for EverQuest while the Chaos Descending expansion launched for EverQuest II on my anniversary with the game, though I bid the game farewell for a while.

But the month was really focused on Lord of the Rings Online and its Legendary Server.  I wondered what we might see on the eve of its launch.  The server itself was overwhelmed pretty quickly and there were problems with its login queue.  A second server was announced almost right away.

After fiddling around with ways to beat the queue I was able to get in and start a new character.  There were some quirks of the game to come to grips with, like the lack of tin.  But I made it to the Lone Lands before the month was out, working on the many deeds there.

Five Years Ago

Pokemon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire Launched.

There was BlizzCon, about which I made the usual predictions.  I found the event itself vaguely dissatisfying.  But those who were bitching about lack of focus on WoW at BlizzCon 2015, go back and look at how little attention it got in 2014!  Otherwise we were in Azeroth collecting achievements and waiting for the expansion to hit.

Oh, yeah, the expansion hit… Warlords of Draenor and server queues and all that.   Blizz was trying to fix that while I had to figure out who to play.  Blizz eventually gave everybody 5 days free for the problems.  But hey, they had 10 million subscribers on the hook again, up from the 7.4 million low point during the summer.  Remember when subscriber numbers were a thing?

In EVE Online the Phoebe expansion arrived, bringing with it Jump Fatigue and the 10 year/50 skill long training queue.  Then they were on about removing other annoyances with the upcoming Rhea expansion.

In game the Reavers had finished up in Feythabolis with a bang and were off into Omist next, hunting the unwary before returning home again.

Rixx Javix was drawing spaceships.  He’s still at it.

And there was the This is EVE video that became wildly popular.

I reflected on EverQuest II at its 10 year anniversary.  Veterans of the game even got their own island.  Over on the EverQuest side of the house, The Darkened Sea, the 21st expansion for the game, went live.

And, finally, the power supply on my computer blew out, taking the motherboard and drives with it.  I had to rebuild, but was up and running again in a couple of days.

Ten Years Ago

I was writing about how I had not changed the blog format since I started.  I have since changed it, though mostly due to the fact that WordPress.com broke the old theme.

Our Thanksgiving entertainment was Rock Band 2.  While I was really bad at it, it was a lot of fun.  The next year we played Super Mario Bros. Wii, which I was also really bad at, but which isn’t nearly as much fun.  However, the kids liked it.  I rode along in a bubble most of the time.

And while Tech Crunch was exposing the odious practices favored by Mark Pinkus to get FarmVille and Mafia Wars profitable, the New York Times was gushing over this wonderful new virtual goods market, which I summarized and provided links to here.

I managed to get some playtime in with the original Torchlight, though there were some problems.  It turns out that if you bought the game from the wrong vendor, you could be a while waiting for patches.

The first LEGO Harry Potter game was announced, which I had anticipated would come to pass almost two years before it was announced.

Warhammer Online announced that levels 1-10 were going to be free, making me wonder if they were just going to breed a mass of level 1 twinks.  I think that is what the end result was.  Well, there were twinks, but I don’t think the amounted to much of a “mass” in any way.

In EVE OnlinePLEX was off to a booming start.  The price of a PLEX has risen some since then (~300 million then, well over a billion ISK now in new PLEX).  Meanwhile, the first Hulkageddon was on and even I noticed something was amiss.  Eventually somebody pointed me in the right direction in the comments.

I wondered if fishing was really the secret ingredient for MMO success.

I got all nostalgic for Star Trek because of Star Trek Online’s impending release.

World of Warcraft and EverQuest II both hit their five year anniversaries.  Then I had the temerity to say that there were things that EQII didn’t do very well in my opinion.  Odd how some of those things from a decade back have changed… or how I have changed… or both.

On the WoW end of things, somebody was suing because they felt the game wasn’t easy enough.

Then there were Mr. T Mohawk grenades and a 24 slot Portable Hole, outrages both along with the $10 vanity pets.  And I was complaining about not getting the Headless Horseman’s mount during Hallow’s End.  Again, sound familiar?

I wrote a very short post about Pilgrim’s Bounty which went on to become the most viewed post on the site November of five years ago.

And the instance group started in with Ragefire ChasmWailing Caverns and Deadmines on the RP-PVP server.  Actual PVP occurred since we had to walk to the Deadmines.  We get called griefers for daring to engage in PVP on a PVP server.

Fifteen Years Ago

As may have been mentioned, World of Warcraft launched fifteen years ago this month.

Also celebrating a fifteenth birthday this month was EverQuest II.  It launched a few weeks earlier, but has ever remained in WoW‘s shadow.

EVE Online got its second free expansion, Exodus, which introduced player owned starbases… the POS of yore… one of the uses of which was to claim territory in untamed null sec space.  And thus the race to for empires began.

Twenty Years Ago

Asheron’s Call, the third of the big three break out MMORPGs of the late 90s, launched.  Never as big as its rivals (it peaked at 120K players to Ultima Online’s 250K and EverQuest’s 550K) it blazed its own trail in trying to define what an MMORPG ought to be.  Neglect, a mis-handled sequel, and a studio that made some dubious and costly moves, left the game without a home when Standing Stone Games was split off to support Dungeons & Dragons Online and Lord of the Rings OnlineAsheron’s Call was officially shut down in January 2017.

Most Viewed Posts in November

  1. Alamo teechs u 2 play DURID!
  2. How Many People Play EVE Online?
  3. The Apology
  4. CCP Falcon Leaves CCP
  5. Looking Back at BlizzCon 2019
  6. End of a Vision
  7. Minecraft and the Search for a Warm Ocean
  8. Visions of a Sunken Temple
  9. No. I’d Rather Kill Rats.
  10. Quote of the Day for WoW Classic Fans
  11. Gambling Returns to New Eden
  12. BlizzCon 2019 and The Big Four Announcements

Search Terms of the Month

how to like raspberries
[to my mind they can only be tolerated]

new everquest game
[Maybe some day]

meeting stones dont summon in classic
[no they do not]

mau wow
[poppa oom mau wow]

why did ccp change the cyno rules in eve online
[If I could answer that…]

Game Time from ManicTime

World of Warcraft gets dethroned from the top spot after three months in a row, as I spent some time in EverQuest II for the 15th anniversary.  I did play less WoW Classic than I did in October.  However, EQII got a big boost thanks to my being off from work most of Thanksgiving week, giving me the time to indulge in its long, side track questing.  It was well behind in time spent until this past week.

  1. EverQuest II – 49.47%
  2. World of Warcraft – 42.94%
  3. EVE Online – 5.53%
  4. EVE Aether Wars – 1.69%
  5. LOTRO – 0.37%

EVE Online

Not a lot happened in New Eden for me.  I went on a total of two ops.  I’m not terribly interested in a lot of the game at the moment and a good chunk of my time was simply spent moving all my junk from one Keepstar to another since our staging station changed.

EverQuest II

Went back for the 15th anniversary and managed to find a goal that seemed obtainable, getting my alleged main to the level cap of 110.  Getting to 108 was quick, but then there was a few days of distraction as I went off on what was something of a wild goose chase, at least when it came to the task at hand.  However, there were some other things unlocked that may do me well later.

Pokemon Go

Still lingering around level 37, though 38 is getting closer.  My wife asked me what we were going to do when we hit level 40.  I said we’d probably quit and go play the Harry Potter version of the game for a change.  That seemed to be okay, since she is much more of a fan of that than Pokemon.

Level: 37 (+0… but very close to 38)
Pokedex status: 470 (+7) caught, 495 (+7) seen
Pokemon I want: I need more Sinnoh stones…
Current buddy: Tepig

World of Warcraft

I logged in for Darkmoon Faire, which is what I do every month.  I will level up my trade skills that way eventually.  I also logged in for the 15th anniversary, though really only to get the achievement and whatever they were handing out directly.  I did not do any of the events nor the LFR for the mount.  I might regret that if mounts were rare, but when you have more than 400, it just isn’t that big of a deal I suppose.

WoW Classic

I slowed down a bit in WoW Classic in November.  I didn’t stop, but as you can see from the play time break down, I didn’t spent more than 90% of my time playing it to the exclusion of all else.  It isn’t a sprint but a marathon to get to level 60 and through all those instances.

Coming Up

It’s the most wonderful time of the year, according to some.  I like that the production servers at work will be locked down for most of the month so no worry about pushing updates or changes.  Just don’t let anything go wrong.

Game companies though… there will be expansion for EverQuest and EverQuest II and EVE Online next month.  We’ll also be getting battlegrounds in WoW Classic.  Then there will be holiday events and the Steam Winter Sale and all of that.

As for me, expect the usual end of the year nonsense I suppose.  There is of series of annual posts I have accumulated over the years that I will no doubt get to again.  Reviews of predictions, a look at what I played, highs and lows, maybe even something about books, all culminating in predictions for the new year.

Defending Distant Sovereignty

The ping was later in the evening on Saturday night.  It was a call for a Jackdaw fleet with Oxygen as the FC.  Jackdaws are usually quick to get places so I figured I might as well get my duty to the state validated yet again.  I logged in, got in a Scalpel I had to hand, and joined the fleet, settling into the logi channel.

When it was announced over comms that there was a need for a few entosis Drakes as part of the fleet I was tempted to just log off then.  Entosis ops are often quite dull.  At least I was smart enough not to volunteer for one of the Drakes again.  And I figured we couldn’t be going very far.  The requirement specified GSF pilots for the enotsis Drakes, which meant defending GSF sovereignty specifically, and that is pretty much limited to Delve, Period Basis, and a bit of Querious.  Somebody must have set a timer on us and now we had to go out and make sure nothing was turned.

So it still seemed like it might be a short op.  We hung about a bit as things got put together, but even with the entosis ships it was a small fleet, with about 30 of us rolling out when Oxygen finally called for us to undock and get on the titan.  At least we would be getting a ride to where we were going.

A grinning Avatar sends us on our way

We were sent off to ZXB-VC, which is the boarder system with Fountain.  We jumped into that region and took the Ansiblex jump gates to the boarder with Cloud Ring in J5A-IX.

Taking the Eye of Terror

From there it was into Cloud Ring and a couple systems over to get the Ansiblex that would take us to 6RCQ-V, the staging system for the past wars in the north.

But we were not done yet.  From there it was into Fade then Pure Blind, where it turns out GSF still holds the sovereignty in KQK1-2, the staging system setup for the “glassing of Tribute” campaign back in the Spring.  That is kind of a long way from home.  Sure, the Aniblex network, the “Eye of Terror Mk III,” makes the trip fairly quick.  But that is still a distant point to be holding relative to our home.

On the map from DOTLAN

And we were out there because somebody set the timer for the territorial control unit, or TCU, for the system.  In the age of Fozzie Sov, the TCU just marks ownership on the map but otherwise does not come with any benefits.  It is the infrastructure hub that is the important one.  But the rules of power are that if you let somebody get away with little things like taking your TCU then they will just be encouraged to move on to bigger things.

So the bulk of the fleet, such that it was, sat in the middle of the constellation where the entosis event was running while interceptors fanned out to scout and Drakes turned on their magic sov wands.  As we hung around the gate some Sleepers rolled up and scanned us.  We had the sense not to shoot at them and nobody had any corpses in their cargo to set them off.

It is just what Sleepers are into

If you go orbit them they will scan you.  I got a couple scanning me at one point.

Scanning my Scalpel

But even they got bored hanging around the gate and warped off to find something else to scan.  The NPCs of New Eden have their own lives.

We did managed to catch and kill one of a group of ships that passed by our little camp, a Tempest that was tackled and dispatched.

Not so fast Mr. Tempest

Of course, with a drone bay large enough for a single light drone on my Scalpel I chose to put a combat drone in it.  Sure, I could have gone with the doctrine specified armor repair drone, but then I wouldn’t have gotten on the kill mail, the proof of life assignment I have for myself every month.

Of course, I wasn’t the only Scalpel so armed.  Three of us each had a different drone too.  If only a fourth had shown up with a Hornet we would have had the light drones from each empire.

That kept us busy for a little bit, but we were soon back to orbiting the gate and waiting for things to wrap up.  Fortunately nobody showed up to contest things… a sizable fleet might have just brushed us away… and the whole thing was wrapped up with the minimum number of entosis operations.

Of course, after that we had the schlep all the way back home, which would have been quick in frigates, but we had those Drakes to carry along.  And then, back in Delve, I found out why we got a titan bridge on the way out.  It looks like GSOL was in the process of taking a bunch of Ansiblex jump gates offline to move them due to the changes that went in last week that require them to be at least 500km off the nearest Upwell structure.  So there were a few more gates to take, though it is still pretty quick to get from Cloud Ring to Delve.

And so it goes.  I have seen a few sovereignty defense fleets going on this month, so apparently we’ll saddle up and ride out every time somebody trolls us by hitting a TCU on the other side of New Eden.  It keeps us busy I suppose.

The October MER and the Return of NPC Bounties

CCP has the Monthly Economic Report for October out, so it is our chance to see if things have continued to rebound since the end of the Blackout.  For that I will open with the same chart I did in September.

October 2019 – Top Sinks and Faucets over time

With the September MER we saw bounties begin a sharp climb.  This climb continued through October, tapering off a bit, but putting the NPC bounty numbers very close to their June pre-Blackout plateau.  That continued increase in bounties was more than enough to allow them to reclaim their past position at the top of the sinks and faucets chart.

October 2019 – Sinks and Faucets

Last month NPC bounties sat at just over 20 trillion ISK, so it doubled for October, hitting 41.5 trillion ISK, easily surpassing commodities.  Oddly, commodities spiked up a bit as well, jumping from 21.6 trillion to 28.4 trillion ISK in value.  But that was not enough to fend off the return of NPC bounties.

The top ten regions for NPC bounties in October were:

  1. Delve – 4.7 trillion
  2. Deklein – 4.0 trillion
  3. Outer Passage – 3.7 trillion
  4. Esoteria – 2.7 trillion
  5. Branch – 2.6 trillion
  6. Cobalt Edge – 2.4 trillion
  7. Fountain – 2.2 trillion
  8. Tenerifis – 1.9 trillion
  9. Oasa – 1.5 trillion
  10. Omist – 1.5 trillion

That is up noticeably from the September list, combined the end of the blackout and the cyno changes that took supers out of ratting for a short time.

  1. Delve – 2.2 trillion
  2. Deklein – 1.5 trillion
  3. Cobalt Edge – 1 trillion
  4. Esoteria – 975 billion
  5. Fountain – 957 billion
  6. Branch – 699 billion
  7. Oasa – 686 billion
  8. Detorid – 528 billion
  9. Tenerifis – 496 billion
  10. Insmother – 454 billion

However, the August numbers, which were just blackout influenced, were actually not as far off in Delve as in some regions.  The perks of organization.

  1. Delve – 4.39 trillion
  2. Insmother – 1.30 trillion
  3. Detorid – 1.23 trillion
  4. Esoteria – 1.05 trillion
  5. Querious – 753 billion
  6. Cobalt Edge – 705 billion
  7. Metropolis – 543 billion
  8. Omist – 526 billion
  9. Fountain – 515 billion
  10. Malpais – 514 billion

Overall NPC bounties remain well down from their peak at the start of the year, even if they are moving back up again.  The monthly NPC bounty totals for 2019 so far:

  • January – 83.8 trillion
  • February – 69.8 trillion
  • March – 71.4 trillion
  • April – 57.2 trillion
  • May – 55.5 trillion
  • June – 48.2 trillion
  • July – 29.1 trillion
  • August – 21.1 trillion
  • September – 20.6 trillion
  • October – 41.5 trillion

For those interested in what happened during the blackout period, CCP Larrikin did a lessons learned segment of his Data & Botting presentation at EVE Vegas.  CCP has posted that presentation as a stand alone video, so you can watch the relevant section which starts at about the eight minute mark:

 

Then there is mining.  I heard on The Meta Show a statement that mining was lagging behind, but I am not sure the numbers support that.

October 2019 – Mining value by region

The top ten regions by value mine for October were:

  1. Delve – 3.7 trillion
  2. Esoteria – 2.2 trillion
  3. Querious – 1.19 trillion
  4. Domain – 1.19 trillion
  5. Fountain – 1.16
  6. The Forge – 1.1 trillion
  7. Malpais – 900 billion
  8. Lonetrek – 805 billion
  9. Cobalt Edge – 801 billion
  10. Metropolis – 795 billion

Compare that to the top ten for September:

  1. Delve – 3 trillion
  2. Domain – 1.3 trillion
  3. The Forge – 1.2 trillion
  4. Esoteria – 1.1 trillion
  5. Querious – 879 billion
  6. Lonetrek – 876 billion
  7. Sinq Laison – 848 billion
  8. Metropolis – 847 billion
  9. Fountain – 768 billion
  10. Genesis – 705 billion

The numbers are not up dramatically, but what did change is where the mining was being done.  During the blackout high sec regions around the major trade hubs climbed up the rankings as null sec mining was suppressed.  With October null sec regions began appearing higher on the list.

But what also happened was that mineral prices were down again in October, putting them near the recent all time low.

October 2019 – Economic Indices

Mining is measures in the ISK value of the ore mined, not by the physical volume, so if the amount of ore mined stayed the same but prices when down, the amount listed in the MER would be down as well.  If prices are down but the MER shows amounts up for regions like Delve and Esoteria, it seems likely that mining has already seen a resurgence and we are now seeing too many minerals chasing too few buy orders.

And so it goes.  It looks like people are back to the ISK generation routines in null sec.  But the things that go along with that to drive the economy like production (108 trillion to 119 trillion ISK value from September to October) and destruction (31 trillion to 32 trillion ISK value from September to October) are not up sufficiently to absorb the influx of minerals.  We shall see if that improves in November.

Beat Around the Boosh Arrives in New Eden

The next of the Team Talos updates mentioned at EVE Vegas landed in New Eden today. (Team Talos overview and details were in this presentation.)

Team Talos Presents…

This is another set of changes aimed at upsetting the current combat meta in order to make things more interesting.  The specific items changed by Team Talos are:

  • Micro Jump Field Generator reworked to move a maximum of 25 capsuleer ships. All fighters, drones, probes and bombs will always be moved
  • Bosonic Field Generator signature resolution increased to 10,000 (was 2000)
  • Dromi I and Standup Dromi I web amount reduced to 10% (was 15%)
  • Dromi II and Standup Dromi II web amount reduced to 15% (was 20%)
  • Ansiblex Jump Gate and Tenebrex Cyno Jammer must now be anchored at least 500km from other Upwell Structures

The first item on the list is a bit of a fix for the invulnerable booshing Raven fleet popularized by The Initiative that could essentially shoot a Keepstar without taking much damage.

The jump effect forming before a Raven fleet

The next three are attempts to make subcaps less vulnerable to supers and titans, while the final change basically keeps people from anchoring either of those structures effectively under the guns of a Keepstar.  CCP was going to grandfather currently situated structures, but rightly decided to apply it universally after some time elapsed.  It is a null sec alliance thing, and null sec alliances can afford to make the change.

So we get those changes today, but we also get a few more items.

Today is the launch of the Korean language version of the EVE Online client.  If you get bought by a Korean company you might as well use their resources.  This is alleged to be getting a pretty big marketing campaign to go with it, so there might be a few more players about during the often quiet time frame between when the US goes to bed and Europe gets home from work.

There are also some updates in the new user experience and the UI, which will no doubt help along the surge of new players the company no doubt expects.

And there are even a rash of fixes.  It sort of makes you wonder why they did such a small update last week.  You can go through the patch notes to see everything they felt worth mentioning.