Tag Archives: Casino War

Quote of the Day – CCP Picks Winners

Goons were untouchable until they failed to deliver the $150K. Then they became outcasts overnight and the IWI RMT block became above the law – until they met with real life gambling law. Then IWI got banned overnight and the devs found their next “winner”: whoever controls the trillions-for-nothing Perimiter citadels.

Gevlon, You can’t compare reality with a dream

So there you have it, the Imperium lost the Casino War because it failed to raise a $150,000 payoff for CCP.

Signs of a vast Goon conspiracy

I love me a good conspiracy theory, and here is Gevlon continuing to justify his leaving EVE Online… so long after he left that you have to wonder who he is really addressing here… the goblin doth protest too much methinks… by claiming that CCP picks winners.  It also seems to invalidate his claim that he beat Goons by funding Mordus Angels.   If CCP picked the winner, then I guess he didn’t really enter into it.  After the failed Kickstarter, Goons were doomed already.

This is especially timely as the CSM 12 elections are going on right now and CCP is working to try and get the non-null sec part of the game to actually give a shit and vote.  CCP isn’t actively campaigning against null sec.  But getting out the vote clearly works against null sec sweeping the election yet again.  Is this how one picks winners? (Cue “CCP could be doing more!” comment)

I would actually like to put Gevlon’s conspiracy up against Dinsdale Pirannha’s, because the Din/Vin spin is that Goons run CCP and that every thing they do is strictly to benefit them.  In his world, Goons were slated to win the war (quote on record), banning IWI was just removing an RMT competitor, and Goons really own whatever citadel is making money one jump from Jita. (Also something about fellatio now and again because Din is so angry he has to personify the imagined collusion into a sexual relationship.)

My own observation of the current “winners,” which is anecdotal, but which has persisted over months, is that citadels one jump from Jita do not have all that much impact on the market.  I extract and sell a skill injector every week at the Caldari Navy Assembly Plant at Jita Planet IV moon 4, and the prices listed in Perimeter have no bearing on what I can get for the injector.   I look at the market, sort the prices low to high, scroll past all the low ball Perimeter listings to where the Jita price stands, list in that range, and the injector sells within hours despite being priced as much as 20% above the Perimeter citadel price.

I am sure some people buy in Perimeter.  I would if it were my ISK.  But clearly the habit and the implied safety of Jita 4-4 is strong enough to be worth a bonus.  Plus it is still the place to buy everything else.  Perimeter is really only trying to corner the PLEX and skill injector market.  Nobody is hauling all of their production to a third party citadel.

And those citadels are not even that safe.  A reader sent me a PLEX in game for answering some questions, contracted to me from a citadel in Perimeter. (Thank you, btw!)  Only when I went to collect it, I found it was in the safety tab of my assets window with a timer before it would appear in an NPC station.  The citadel it was in had been destroyed.  Oops.  Now I have to wait until I can buy it out of hock.

Anyway, this sounds like a classic choice of malice over ignorance.  Do you think CCP is picking winners?  Is CCP just bad at predicting consequences?  (Or believing when players point them out in advance?)  Or is this just along the lines of Malcanis’ law (another Gevlon favorite), where anything aimed at helping newer players ends up helping the entrenched older players even more so?

Looking forward to the inevitable Gevlon and Dinsdale comments on this.

Tribute Comes Alive!

Back in early October NCDot, Pandemic Legion, and the usual assortment of hangers on announced that they were going to invade Circle of Two’s space in Tribute and take it from them.  Pandemic Horde coveted the system of M-OEE8, which its easy access to Jita, so they and all their friends were going to go get it.

Horde has a vision

Horde has a vision

This was exciting news and seemed, in some ways, the final encore of the Casino War as the final pre-war resident of the region, Circle of Two, was set to be evicted.  Of those who invaded the north, TEST was CO2’s only major ally.

Of course, the only reason CO2 lasted that long in the north is that they sold our the Imperium before the first battle in their territory even began.  Stewing territorial grievances (among other things they resented having TNT, my alliance, in Tribute from the day we showed up) and bad cash management got them to switch sides, hand over intel, and actively join the fight against the Imperium.

As you can imagine, the thought of the Circle of Traitors getting their own comeuppance was a happy one.  I dubbed the whole thing the Schadenfreude War, as the two sides grinding against each other was going to be entertaining no matter who won, just so long as there was blood.

TMC and EN24 picked up the story right away.  War is always big news.

 

But rather than a supercapital blitzkrieg, it was more of a sitzkrieg, a phoney war in space.  There were a few skirmishes, but the greater effort seemed to be going into propaganda creation for Reddit. (Examples collected here and here.)  The TEST baby dino propaganda was especially good, I hope somebody has collected it all up somewhere.  And then there was the magnificent Be In NCDot piece.

So adorable

So adorable

Propaganda without a war… well, that pretty much defines the EVE Online subreddit most days, cesspit that it is.  At one point my going theory was that NCDot was attempting to slowly bankrupt CO2 by dropping bait titans in order to kill off all of CO2’s tackle ships.

The was was dull and other events overtook it.  The Alliance Tournament, the coming Ascension expansion, the end of gambling in New Eden, and EVE Vegas all took their turns in the spotlight as Tribute simmered away.  There were no headlines about it on the various EVE Online sites, though both the major news sites, EN24 and INN, seemed to be pretty quiet overall.  I didn’t so much give up hope for that comeuppance as forgot it was even an option.

But the war apparently ground on without me paying it any attention, so that this past week I was surprised to see NCDot talking up the war in their recent state of the alliance as well as a reports of a battle in M-OEE8.  I headed on over to DOTLAN to check the Tribute map, and it looks like the aggressors have been busy.

Tribute - November 22, 2016

Tribute – November 22, 2016

Pandemic Legion, Pandemic Horde, and NCDot now hold 16 former CO2 systems in Tribute, with more under siege including CO2’s capital system, M-OEE8, where NCDot has taken the ihub.

So the war has progressed, and that moment of schadenfreude for those of us in our new homes in Delve may come to pass.  There is also the usual null sec symmetry to the whole thing.  Back in 2012 I was there when we took UMI-KK in Tribute War of 2012 from NCDot, after which they pretty much gave up and moved south.  Now they are back again, invading down the same route we took, scooping up those very same systems the left behind four years back.

Two Years of Reavers

The real Reavers anniversary date is October 14th so far as I can tell.  That is the earliest mention of it I can find in the forums.  But, for no real reason, the fact that another year has gone by doesn’t seem to occur to me until a week or so after that date has passed.  As it happened last year, so it happens this year.

Reavers forum bee

Reavers forum bee

And as I did last year, I will mark this passing with another summary post.  For those wishing to revisit the first year, here is the summary:

The first year of Reavers saw many changes to the game.  There was a long transition from Dominion sovereignty to Aegis or Fozzie Sov.  That saw the introduction of jump fatigue, entosis links, and constellation-wide sovereignty contests.  It also saw the end of the vast rental empires that funded several groups, as you can see in this year over year sovereignty map that I posted last year.

October 14, 2014 and October 14, 2015 compared

October 14, 2014 and October 14, 2015 compared

There is still some rental space in null sec, but it is confined to the northeastern corner of New Eden.

As Reavers played through changes in sovereignty mechanics in its first year, the SIG played through a host of changes in its second year.  Again the map changed and a year later finds us in a new home in the southwest of New Eden.

October 14, 2015 and October 14, 2016 compared

October 14, 2015 and October 14, 2016 compared

The long war in the north… you can make the case that we fought from November 2015, in what was called the Kickstarter War at the time, until our retreat from Saranen in July at the end of the Casino War… wore us out and drained our finances.  While the Phoebe jump fatigue changes made that migration south painful, it also kept our foes from pursuing us down south to continue the war as well, at least according to Elise Randolph on Asher’s recent podcast.

And while other changes came during the last year… citadels being one of the most obvious… the specter of war cast a shadow over much of the year as far as Reavers were concerned.  While I saw jacket pals in many fleets and flew with Asher Elias often enough (he even got us some titan kills), but actual Reaver deployments were few.

We went down to spar with TEST in Wicked Creek last November, the FISHKINGBOIS deployment:

There was an experiment with Typhoons:

There was a deployment down to Querious, the second home to all Reavers, to chase Pandemic Horde around after the returned home from Cloud Ring.

And after that there is the long gap in Reavers ops, when the Casino War kept all available pilots occupied in the north.

The Reavers tag on the blog did not get used again until September of this year, when the conquest of Delve was wrapping up and there was a return to normalcy.  Then it was time for Reavers to head off to Querious again, a region I know better than Delve at this point, in order to take moons and pacify the region.

That is just nine Reavers posts over the course of the last year, compared to 27 the year before.  The war dominated most of the year.  With a new settled homeland Reavers can now range out on deployments.  Or we will, once we get Querious settled.  Always some work to be done somewhere.

The Schadenfreude War

Haw haw!

-Nelson Muntz

The Casino War is long over now.  We lost, were driven out, had alliances, corps, and many individuals jump ship.  But we managed to find a new home in Delve in very short order.  In that, at least, husbanding our resources rather than squandering them against overwhelming odds worked out.  There we setup shop, made new friends, scared the neighbors, and settled into peacetime null sec life again down in south, far from our old digs.

Up in the north, with the primary foe gone, all of New Eden has been able to watch and see if the Casino Coalition would break up as promised.

Initially it seemed like the whole place would be blue in all but name, with skirmishes allowed but only the occasional political issue or failscade allowed to change the the map. (e.g. Short Bus Syndicate and TISHU)

Sovereignty seemed safe.

Even Darius “We’re not here to destroy the game, we’re here to destroy your game” JOHNSON and his GoonSwarm (not to be confused with the Imperium’s Goonswarm Federation) was given some systems to call home when they were evicted from Delve, while Mordus Angels, with a long history of being the insurgent, decided to settle down and be a sov holder and mind NCDot’s moons once bereft of their traditional Goon foe.

The north looked to be settling down to peacetime as well, its new occupants content to fight the Guristas menace between skirmishes.

The north currently

The north currently

Well, they are not ALL new occupants.  There is still Circle-of-Two sitting in Tribute.  Circle-of-Two who changed sides before the fighting was done at M-OEE8, who joined the war against us, who gave our foes intel about our capital building locations.

The war that started LONG before Easter...

The war that started LONG before Easter…

Their betrayal got them what they wanted.  They got to keep their sovereignty, plus the TNT sov they had been demanding from the Imperium for the last year (they were bad neighbors), their moons, plus whatever casino ISK they were able to wheedle out of those financing our foes.

It would be fair to say that there is a little bad blood left over from the war between us and CO2’s leadership.  I’m not on The Mittani’s “revenge on all the things” bandwagon, but I would make an exception in the case of CO2.

So imagine the collective grin in the Imperium when it came out that Pandemic Legion family of alliances, Pandemic Legion, Sniggewaffe, and Pandemic Horde, along with their side-kick NCDot, decided that they liked the far end of the Tribute region, where CO2 lives, so much that they decided to take it.  This came from the Pandemic Horde forums:

We are going to war.

Target is the tribute region, specifically CO2 sov: http://evemaps.dotlan.net/map/Tribute

The first targets are the systems UMI and AW1. Timer for UMI is already coming up on Tuesday.

https://timerboard.net/tribute

– Expected enemies are CO2, TEST and Snuff/PM.
– Have a Maelstrom ready if you can fly and afford one.
– Pull out your wands and start entosing as many hostile systems as you can.
– Summer’s over, let’s go boys

The plan is for Pandemic Horde to eventually move their home staging system from deep in Fade to M-OEE8 in Tribute should they take the region away from CO2.

Tribute is an improvement over our current space. M-O is in direct JF range from jita and easily accessible for new players coming from empire. That also means cutting down the load for logistics to one third compared to our current staging. This makes a big difference especially once alpha clones are here. Tribute maintains great access to content (brave and gotg) while getting us closer to TEST and to lowsec (10 jumps from Tama).

Basically, like all real estate related transactions, the primary aspects are “location, location, location.”  As for their feelings towards CO2… well, if you can’t screw over your friends, who can you screw over?

CO2 have been good allies during WWB and made a massive difference in the war against goons. Afterwards they became good neighbors regularly bringing fights to 7rm (ruptures, ONIs ecc…) and to lowsec. There is no component of hate for CO2 in this campaign, they are a good alliance full of great guys. The goal of this war is to secure a better access to empire and superior space while fighting together with NC and PL. It is my belief that CO2 will eventually lose this war whether Horde joins in or not, and then I would rather be the ones holding Tribute than letting test or a new alliance grab this key area.

As a spectator… I can now be one of those sideline loudmouths with no skin in the game but lots of opinions… this is a dream match.

On one side there is our traditional foe, NCDot, against whom we have fought multiple wars in just my five years in null sec. (And they have lost every time they didn’t have PL backing them up.)

On the other side there is CO2, the last remnants of the old north still up there and… well… not our friends to say the least.

Watching just those two groups square off… with various allies lending a hand… should be interesting to watch.  I hope for a long and bloody war that ends up with CO2 finding a new home.  We shall see who has the stomach for it I suppose.

The propaganda war on /r/eve kicked off strong for the defenders.  If that could win wars, TEST would own all of null sec.  But instead the war is focused on the first couple of systems in the western end of Tribute, which is a long way from M-OEE8.

CO2 did attempt to really take the war to their foes by entosising all of the Brothers of Tangra systems in Malpais.  Those are part of the last remaining rental empires in New Eden and an income source for the attackers.  However CO2 did not follow up on that and have not touched those systems since, making me wonder if they got word that striking into Drone Region Federation territory would widen the war against them.

Anyway, we get to watch this one from the bleachers in Delve.  While it is starting slowly, I wonder if the Alliance Tournament is impeding the attackers some and if, once that is over, things will get bloodier.

Coverage of the war is available at the Game of Sov site, which keeps track of such things.

Other coverage that has shown up so far:

Addendum: Does CO2 bringing down a citadel (which then got stolen) mean they are evac’ing already?

A Return to Normalcy in Delve

America’s present need is not heroics, but healing; not nostrums, but normalcy; not revolution, but restoration; not agitation, but adjustment; not surgery, but serenity; not the dramatic, but the dispassionate; not experiment, but equipoise; not submergence in internationality, but sustainment in triumphant nationality.

-Warren G. Harding, 1920 Presidential campaign

Such was the election winning sentiment of the nation after WWI.

Some sense of normalcy is also what the Imperium clearly sought after departing the north of New Eden in defeat at the end of the Casino War just under two months ago.  And so we packed up and headed south towards Delve, basing first in Sakht, then 1-SMEB, and finally in D-W7F0, dropping citadels everywhere, as the conquest of the region progressed.

Another Fortizar going up

Another Fortizar going up

The locals set up to hold the line against the Imperium, but were seriously out numbered and required allies from the north in order to commit to any sort of serious resistance.  Fights around the first constellation were largely supported by Pandemic Legion and Northern Coalition.

Later, as the Imperium expanded its hold on the region, and the locals began to evacuate, TEST formed up and came down to make common cause with the remaining residents against us.

The low point for them was getting a Machariel fleet bottled up in a dead-end constellation with an incursion running in it, which had the bonus effect of blocking cynos.  It isn’t clear why they chose that constellation, though a going theory was they were going to run the incursion to help raise our ADMs.  But, there they were, so we setup a blockade.  SynCaine and I were both in the initial fleet for that.

Camping a gate, waiting patiently

Camping a gate, waiting patiently

This led to them logging out, then logging back in later to try and slip away. (Their leader was not so patient and got popped early on trying to run the gauntlet.)  The blockade stayed in place, watching the exits, and a confirmed 30 Machariels were killed, along with half a dozen other ships from the fleet and an unknown number of self-destructs.  As I mentioned in the August in review post, one pilot ejected from his Machariel (screen shot) rather than face the apparent shame of giving us the kill mail, at which point Jay Amazingness hijacked the ship; pretty much a direct transfer from TEST to GSF.

Shortly thereafter TEST declared their deployment a success and set a course back to Vale of the Silent, though as last as this morning errant Machariels were still being knocked off trying to slip away.  TEST pilots reportedly have three days to get back to Vale. (Reference: Progodlegend coms meltdown early in the Delve deployment, after which “three days” became a meme in the Imperium.)

None of which did much to slow down the sovereignty grind, so that now almost all of Delve is in the hands of the Imperium.  Just a few systems left to go.

Delve - September 7, 2016

Delve – September 7, 2016

The remaining members of the Imperium interested in holding sovereignty have been given a couple token systems each.  TNT, like LAWN and Bastion, got the TCUs in two systems, though GSF holds the ihubs and stations still.  I guess this was a point of pride, being back on the map or some such.  But since ratting and mining is now a free-for-all in all Imperium held space, it isn’t as though we were restricted to just those two systems.

And ratting is very much under way, with a standing fleet and coordinated response teams, to help raise ADMs and the boost our wallet balances.

Blood Raiders use lasers, which is a change from the Guristas

Blood Raiders use lasers, which is a change from the Guristas

We even have our own Fortizar online.  I visited it at one point while it was going up.

Fortizar deployment under way

Fortizar deployment under way

Later, after it was live I docked up and found that I had been given access to the defenses!

Take Control? Don't mind if I do!

Take Control? Don’t mind if I do!

I was able to see the fighting interface for the citadel, which looks just like the interface for ships, with a special module or two.

Gunning the Fortizar

Gunning the Fortizar

So now I just need somebody to attack the damn thing when I am around so I can shoot them.  However, that doesn’t seem likely in the near term as resistance has fallen off in the region.  even next door in Querious a number of the locals have packed up and moved away.  Some, such as Brave, were already absentees, while others in the region are looking to make deals with the Imperium over space.

Western Querious - September 7, 2016

Eastern Querious – September 7, 2016

The Imperium has spilled over into the region in a few places, but hasn’t been actively pursuing sovereignty. (Though some former Delve residents are trying to settle in.) I’m not sure Red Frog Freight, for example, could stand up to were we determined to take the region.  It is more a place to look for fights and to test out new doctrines.

Giant griddles roaming Querious

Giant griddles roaming Querious

But even with the some groups in region keen for fights, we have had to wander further afield at times, into Catch or Providence, to find hostile fleets.

All in all, it is a quiet time now after the six months of continued warfare that went on during the first half of the year.  People are settling into their new homes in Delve.  For some, it is a return to a familiar place.  For me it is still a bit strange.  I’ve been down to Delve on deployments a number of times (back in 2012 we helped TEST conquer the region and I’ve been back a few times since), but I have never lived there, so I still have to keep DOTLAN EVE Maps handy to figure out where I am, where reports on intel channels are happening, and how to get to places in the region.

And so we live in Delve now.  Just a few more systems to grab, a bunch more citadels to drop, and then the wait for the sovereignty levels to rise up enough to get a jump bridge network in place and we will be set.

Addendum: It seems SynCaine also chose today to write about making a home in Delve.

Addendum: Also, it looks like that LUMPY Fortizar went *boom* as it came online. Pictures.

Executive Outcomes Leaves The Imperium

It was announced in a broadcast earlier today that the alliance Executive Outcomes is leaving the Imperium.

Executive Outcomes - August 10, 2016

Executive Outcomes – August 10, 2016

EXE is the fifth alliance to leave the Imperium since the Casino War opened up at the start of the year.  EXE takes with it a little over 800 members.  The Imperium and EXE have reset each other through mutual agreement, so we may be shooting at each other as time goes by.

No longer blue to us...

No longer blue to us…

This change has been in the works for a while.  Even I got wind of it a couple weeks back and had the graphic above ready to go on July 25th in anticipation of the news breaking.  Certainly EXE hasn’t been showing up in fleets of present on battle reports of late.

As far as Imperium alliances go, EXE didn’t lose that many members over the course of the war, though they were a smaller alliance to begin with, sitting at over 1,000 members back in January.

The Imperium - August 10, 2016

The Imperium – August 10, 2016

Their departure leaves the Imperium with five alliances.  Goonswarm Federation makes up the bulk of the coalition with almost 15K pilots.  Then there is The Bastion, with just shy of 1,300 pilots, The Initiative with almost 2,200 pilots, the remains of Get off My Lawn, with just 207 pilots listed today and, finally, TNT, my own alliance, which weighs in with just over 1,000 pilots on its rolls.

The bulk of the Imperium is now down in Delve, save for The Initiative, which was ever a very independent group within the coalition and which is off on its own deployment.

Of the other alliances, I suppose one might question the future of LAWN, being as small as it is, and The Bastion, having been created in cooperation with GSF back in the day in order to accommodate members of CFC alliances that were folding up, but who wished to stay with the coalition.  That role could be filled by KarmaFleet now I suppose.  And then there is TNT, about which I can only say, we haven’t been WiDot’d yet!

Addendum:

EXE leaving Imperium was announced on the show “Talking In Stations” 2 weeks ago, when Sion was guest.

-Matterall on Reddit

So I guess I am about two weeks late on this news!

Second Addendum:  Mo’Chuisle, the leader of EXE, left a happy farewell message on the GSF forums yesterday, indicating that they had thought about parting ways for a while now, but didn’t want to do it in the middle of a war.  On Reddit though, he laid bare the true reason for EXE leaving:

Speaking as EXE leadership, I can confirm that the reason we left is solely due to the Imperium ruling caste’s continued tolerance of Xenuria’s existance as court jester and no other factors played a role in our decision

Defeat in the North and New Destinations

The war, for whatever name you chose… Casino War, World War Bee, The War of Sovless Aggression… will effectively be over by the end of the week.

The Mittani announced on the weekly fireside chat yesterday that The Imperium would be packing up and leaving Saranen. (Recording here, since it is already up on Reddit. The meat of the announcements are in the first 10 mins.)

I have previously had people tell me that the war was over already because The Imperium lost all of its sovereignty, or because they personally were done, or, most bizarrely, because Reddit wasn’t talking about it enough, as though Reddit defines reality.  But I have always maintained that wars aren’t over until the losing side admits defeat and goes away.

Well, here is that admission.  We lose.  End of war.  Fabian strategy failed.  The reconquista has been postponed indefinitely.  The MBC/CFC 2.0, rules the north.

So the fight, which has been going on for over six months for some of us, is over.  I know that there are ops going on this week, running into Pure Blind, but my heart isn’t in it now.  Of course, part of that is because we were told to pack all of our stuff and be ready to move this coming weekend.

I favor Vanilla Quafe myself

Good bye to the Quafe Factory Warehouse, Saranen V, moon 9

I was just enough ahead of the curve that I got nearly everything out of Deklein and Tribute before the MBC began to actively contest those regions.  There is still a Harpy in one station, a blockade runner in another packed with a final bit of stuff, and an Oneiros I put up on contract in UMI-KK.  But that is about it.

I sent a lot of it to Jita to be liquidated so as to have ISK for a protracted war, but a good chunk of useful stuff ended up in Saranen.  And my stockpile in Saranen grew as we swapped doctrines and I had to buy new ships time and again.

Now that all has to go… somewhere.

Even before the fireside chat was over I had repackaged a bunch of ships and modules and contracted them to be shipped to Jita.  That was the first pass, the easy picks, the ships no longer in doctrine and related items, 100,000 m3 of stuff.  It has already arrived safely.

But I am still left with a lot of stuff in Saranen, more stuff than I can easily move, including a carrier.  Since I am not part of CapSwarm, I am not sure how I will get that safely to wherever we might be headed.

Of course, that is the big question of the day, where are we headed?

If you look at the current null sec influence map, you will notice that there isn’t a big empty spot in sovereign null sec for us to simply move into.  So we will have to take some space.  But where?

Even leaving aside our old space, space occupied by groups with which we have agreements (various Russians), and space that is just shit (sorry Period Basis), there are a variety of possible destination regions on the map.

Where will The Imperium go?

Where will The Imperium go?

Delve is the classic Goon location and has NPC null stations to stage out of.  Querious has good access to empire space.  Fountain is old, familiar territory, though a bit close to the MBC.  Etherium Reach keeps some proximity to the big trade hub in Jita.  And the others… well… they are far away from the MBC.  Who is likely to follow us to Omist?

Everybody has a guess as to where we will be going, but the official announcement won’t come until the end of the week.

Wherever we are headed, we have been told we will be there for a long time, a year or more perhaps.  And that brings up the question of how this will change The Imperium.  Some people are tired of the war and want a place to settle into and in which they can rebuild.  Others are invested in Deklein and the north, either identifying with it strongly or having left a lot of their stuff behind.  This long march into exile may winnow down our numbers further.

As we head towards the new normal, whatever that may be, the winding down of the war and the summer downturn in PCU numbers has led to the usual “EVE is dying!” reaction, which is the topic of this month’s blog banter.

I won’t be joining in on that, I have too much to do in game.