Tag Archives: CSM13

Monday Musings after EVE Fanfest 2018

EVE Fanfest 2018 is over.  We are in that strange time between announcements and reality when hope and fear can run wild, before Dev Blogs nail things down and updates show us what we’re really getting.

EVE Fanfest XV

I did not get to watch as much of Fanfest as I might have liked.  Living on the left coast of the US, currently 7 hours behind UTC/EVE Time, a lot of the early presentations happened while I was still asleep.  I wasn’t going to alarm clock that.  But I did get to see a few, and it looks like the ones I missed are slowly making their way on to YouTube so I can follow up.  But here on the Monday after is a quick recap of what I think I saw over the weekend.

Fifteenth Anniversary Goodies

CCP told us what they’ll be handing out to players for the 15th anniversary.  Alpha clones will be getting some things, while Omegas will be getting that and more.  There will be an array of ships and skins and clothing items handed out, so long and you remember to log in your account in the 30 days before the anniversary date, which is May 6.

Into the Abyss

While I am against EVE Online expansions that aren’t just one word… maybe two words, but seriously, screw you Exodus: Red Moon Rising… there are some interesting items stacked up for Into the Abyss.

Coming May 29

It is good to see that CCP can do updates almost every month and still are able to package up something like a real expansion once or twice a year.

Triglavians Are Coming!

I wrote a post about this on Friday.  I’ve seen a few more details, but not enough to renounce that post or have much to add.  Abyssal Pockets will be a thing as will entropic disintegrators .  I need to go back and watch the video for the Triglavian panel.

Final Date for Null Sec Stations

Only about six months after the initial estimate, stations in null sec will finally be transformed into special faction citadels.  First announced at Fanfest 2017, the scramble for stations will now commence as those who hold them on June 5, 2018 will be memorialized.  Also, this will be the great asset recovery for null sec as everything locked in hostile stations will now be in citadels, allowing players to get their stuff back… for a modest fee of course.

Structure Futures

The end of the POS, player owned starbase, is night.  Planned small structures will replace the cyno beacon, cyno jammer, and jump bridge functionality.  Those will require ihub upgrades.  And then there will be the great refunding and re-purposing of modules and blue prints related to the noble POS before it finally disappears from New Eden.

There is a plan for propaganda structures that corps and alliances will be able to deploy around their space.  I am sure running into enemy space just to shoot their symbols will become a thing.

There is also talk of possibly maybe some day giving players access to the pirate faction forward operating base structures in order to fill a gap left by the removal of POSes.  You could bring a POS with you into hostile space, find an open moon, and deploy it in an hour, giving yourself a base of operations quickly.  An Astrahus or Raitaru take 24 hours to deploy and are up on everybody’s overview the whole time.  We shall see.

Activity Tracker

CCP will be adding in a feature to track both more broadly and deeply what you have been up to in New Eden and what you haven’t tried yet.

Activity Tracker base view

Unfortunately a lot of the data for this has never been collected in the past, so it will only start filling in once it goes live.  As such my own tracker will likely only show activity in the capsuleer combat section, my days of mission running, mining, industry, invention, and what not being things of the past.

As a side effect of this kill mail data will be more complex… probably killing zKillboard in the process… and will allow logi ships to get on kill mails.  I guess I am okay with that.  I just got on kill mails as logi in the past well enough, using the time honored whore drone method, but whatever.

Three Pillars of EVE Online

What CCP Seagull put forth as the primary foci of the EVE Online team.

The look like hexagons to me

I expect this to be turned into a meme very soon.

CSM13 Candidate List

While most of it ended up on Reddit early, we did still get pictures and names of all the candidates that were slated for the CSM13 ballot.

The CSM13 candidate list… I hope CCP Falcon isn’t covering somebody there

I haven’t heard when the election will actually be, but the campaign can now really begin since people know who will be on the ballot.  At a total of 49 that is less candidates than previous years.  Last time around there were 64 candidates.  I suspect less may be better, but it is still 49 people on a ballot, most of whom the average player will no nothing about.

Empires of EVE Vol II

The Kickstarter for this is off and running and already past 6x its goal, so it looks like we’ll be getting another fine Andrew Groen book on the history of null sec.

The Rixx Javix Payoff

Warp Core Stabilizers not being allowed in Faction Warfare sites?  This smells strongly of a ploy by CCP to get Rixx to say something nice about them.

Other CCP Games

We learned a bit about Project Nova and Project Aurora.  The former, a PC remake of DUST 514, is alleged to be close than we think while the latter, now called EVE: War of Ascension, is expected to be available on mobile devices later this year.

A Wedding

There was a wedding at Fanfest this year.

A moment they will no doubt remember forever.

Camera Work

Being remote from Fanfest sucks, and not just due to the time zone differential.  Those of us at home are at the mercy of CCP and how they choose to run their stream, including how the cameras are deployed and used.

There is nothing I can say that really describes that moment when CCP ran the new 15 Years of EVE Online trailer and, part way through, the camera cut to the audience so people on the stream were treated to the vision of a bunch of nerds sitting in the dark watching the thing we really wanted to see.  The only upside was that at least I could only see one fedora being worn in the crowd.

I wish I was watching what they were watching… also, fedora

Being CCP, they ran the trailer twice… and cut to the crowd again during the second run.  At least they cut during a different segment so that, in two consecutive runs I think I saw most of the trailer.  But I still had to wait until it hit YouTube to get it all in one go.

Each presentation I watched had its own camera screw up, like when Elise Randolph put up a slide of FCs as part of his presentation but the camera stayed on him so we got to watch him, turned away from us and looking at the slide on the big screen, rather than the slide itself.  We were allowed a brief glimpse of the slide after about a minute of Elise’s ass, but it wasn’t enough to pick anybody out.

And none of that was helped by the fact that they felt they needed to keep a corner of the screen reserved for the speaker when showing slides, which covered data on the slides more than a few times.

Yeah, I know, it is tough to be in the booth and make the right calls at times, but when you’ve making the wrong call… change the camera.

Other Things

Then I turned on Twitch at one point and saw what appeared to be CCP staff on a Japanese game show climbing stairs slathered in slippery liquid.

Too little left to the imagination

I have to admit, CCP Guard captured my reaction pretty well.

Look, I just work here…

And, during the warm up intro to EVE Fanfest, CCP Guard pulled out what was perhaps one of the more ironic screen captures from the early era of the game.

For Bumping?

I am not sure what happened since then, but bumping pretty much enables suicide ganking and Burn Jita.  Times have changed.

Anyway, such was Fanfest from afar.  EVE Vegas is coming in October again for those of us unwilling to fly across eight time zones.

March in Review

The Site

Probably the most annoying thing for me has been the unreliability of the blog roll feed side bar widget.  It has been broken more often this past month than any previous time I can recall.  There are times when it just fails to get the RSS feed and shows an error, but this time around there were problems with Pinboard which had some internal issues that caused it to fail to generate the RSS feed at all and, then, when that was fixed, remained stubbornly resistant to tagging posts based on which Feedly feed they came from, which meant the RSS feeds were there but were not getting new items.

This is what I get for using a Rube Goldberg setup that requires at least four services to work correctly and consistently. (And it isn’t always clear which one is to blame.  Sometimes WP.com just times out getting the feed.)

It got to a point where I added a status widget to comment on what was up.  I don’t know if anybody actually noticed that.  The side bar of the blog isn’t a very often used feature.  I can see that some people click on items from the feed when it is working.  However, I suspect I am the biggest user of the feature. (My clicks don’t get counted in my own stats.)

Meanwhile, WP.com has given me a new metric so I am going to use it quarterly to give myself some new data point to post about.

TAGN – Q1 2018

Of course, because I took that screen shot for this post before it went live, this post isn’t counted.  Add one more post and another 2,300 words or so and you’ll be set. (That puts my average words per post back above 1,000.)  Or maybe I’ll update that screen shot after this goes live.  It takes a day for it to update though, and I’ll probably forget by then.

Anyway, I seem to be on track for 336 posts and 330K words this year.

One Year Ago

EverQuest turned eighteen.  Now an adult, it still lives in Daybreak’s basement and grumbles about how it used to be the center of attention before all these younger siblings showed up.

Blizzard officially announced that StarCraft, even older than EverQuest, was getting a remaster.  We suspected it was going to happen, but it was nice to get the official word.

Flying was unleashed in the Broken Isles with the Tomb of Sargeras update to WoW Legion.

The Nintendo Switch launched.  But I was still playing Pokemon Sun on my 3DS XL, binging on the Alola Pokedex.  Then I had to figure out where the National Pokedex was.  It turns out it is in Pokemon Bank.  I was hoping for a remake of Pokemon Diamond & Pearl.

Disney shut down Club Penguin, hoping to force players onto their new mobile app, Club Penguin Island.  Mobile is always better, right?

In Minecraft, the long road to the forest mansion I found was nearly done.

In EVE Online I took a trip out to Oasa and back.

We got the YC119.3 update that nerfed Rorqual mining a bit and gave us warp bubble decay among other things.  Music was included.  A follow on patch let us see our estimated space wealth.

Blog Banter #80 was on the topic of the CSM, something about which I has opinions!  It was a timely topic as the voting for CSM12 was just kicking off.  In the mean time Gevlon declared that CCP was picking winners… though not CSM winners I guess.

We had a dev blog about refineries coming to New Eden.  Moon mining was going to change and it seemed like the end of the POS was coming at last.  There was also an announcement about changing PLEX, breaking it up into 500 pieces and replacing Aurum with PLEX.  But not that free Aurum they gave you, though they relented on that after some outcry.

I was nostalgic for old ship models in New Eden and talking about the tension between grouping and solo again.

And, finally, we had to say good-bye to our cat Oscar after 17 years.

Five Years Ago

Dave Georgeson of SOE said MMOs should never die. A noble sentiment at the time, it rang a bit hollow just a year and five SOE MMO closure announcements later.  Business is business.

I got a seven day pass to Azeroth from Blizzard.  It was nice.  I had some fun, but I wasn’t ready to go back full time yet.

Meanwhile, Blizzard was saying they were blindsided by the popularity of the auction house in Diablo III.  They were nearly a year late on that revelation.

On a similar theme, EA launched a new version of SimCity, pretty much ignoring the obvious expectations the franchise came with.  I could only wonder if they learned anything from their efforts.

The instance group was doing some Rift content as a four player group.  This was the time of our long hiatus, though we got a full group now and again.  And when it was just the three of us, we ended up playing Neverwinter Nights 2 instead.

In EVE Online we were chasing around Deklein, flying the Tech Fleet doctrine, and bagging a carrier or two.

EON Magazine was closing its doors, marking the end of an era in EVE Online.

EverQuest hit its 14 year anniversary, and there was some talk about the camera view’s influence on the game’s popularity.

I was still playing World of Tanks and had hit the 2,000 battle mark.  I was out there with the KV-3 and the ARL 44.

I finished up all the things in Wayfaerer Foothills, which sort of ended my time in Guild Wars 2.

Then there was the Shroud of the Avatar Kickstarter campaign, which seemed more marketing tool than funding effort, and which hit its number in 11 days.  Still, Lord British felt the need to stir the pot by declaring most game designers suck… and are lazy… and are not as good as him.  Then he claimed he was taken out of context and not just saying things for cheap publicity.  As the month closed, his Kickstarter was wrapping up, but Camelot Unchained was coming.

It was announced that Age of Empires II: The Age of Kings was getting updated to run on modern machines with better graphics.  That set me on five other older games that I wished would get a similar revamp, which I think was more useful than just declaring that game developers need to innovate.

Finally, I was looking for input on some actual, real world things.

Ten Years Ago

I was again ruminating about the whole “Why So Much Fantasy in MMORPGs?” thing, this time on the shores of chaos.

We started to see the end of the “Brent hand picks the news” era over at VirginWorlds.  The reign of myself and CrazyKinux was near to an end.

I got a Nintendo DS Lite and my own copy of Pokemon Diamond for my birthday!  Then a copy of Pokemon Pearl showed up as well to complete the set.  On Friday’s I was looking for a balloon.

EverQuest celebrated its 9th anniversary.  A very nice time line print of the game was posted over at the EQ Dev blog to celebrate, along with a video.

In Lord of the Rings Online some sites were speculating about future expansions.  And then Turbine announced The Mines of Moria Meanwhile, I was trying to give out some founder’s referrals.  I never gave them all out and, at this point, I don’t think they are a thing anymore.

In World of Warcraftpatch 2.4 was the latest end-of-the-world panic.  I was trying out Alterac Valley trying to get a mount, not reading that I needed to get exalted reputation to buy it.  I was also racing against a boat.  Meanwhile the instance group made it to Shattrath and then hit the Blood Furnace while my wife and her friends were drinking apple-tinis.

In EVE Online I learned that there was a cap of fifty days on production lines.  I was also trying to break up with an R&D agent and fitting out a new Drake.  We got a “log off” button with the Trinity 1.1 patch.

Official forums were the talk again for a bit, as Marc Jacobs said he wasn’t going to have them for Warhammer Online.  No, the Warhammer Herald (to be created in the image of the Camelot Herald) was going to be enough.  Well, we know how that worked out.

It was announced that SOE would be moved in the Sony organization from reporting up through Sony Pictures to reporting in through the PlayStation organization.  There was also the EQ2Flames drama where the forum was uninvited from all future participation in SOE events, at which point the site went all out to burn any remaining bridges with SOE. (From VirginWorlds Podcast #109)

And, finally, ten years ago Gary Gygax left us.  We still miss him because we still feel his influence every day.

Twenty Years Ago

StarCraft hit the shelves 20 years ago today.  As I recall we all went to Fry’s at lunch to buy a copy the day it came out.  You can buy a remastered copy from Blizzard if you want, or download the original for free.

Most Viewed Posts in March

  1. Burn Jita Back for 2018
  2. From Alola Pokedex to National Pokedex in Pokemon Sun
  3. Burn Jita 2018 Aftermath
  4. Where the Hell is that EverQuest Successor Already?
  5. Alamo teechs u 2 play DURID!
  6. Do You Wear the Mask or does the Mask Wear You?
  7. Rift Prime Time
  8. The Road to CSM13
  9. SuperData and the Rise of Fortnite
  10. H1Z1 – Going Live in Time to be a Zombie
  11. Spring Movie League – Wrinkle in the Mix
  12. Extra Credits – Picking at the Lockbox Thing Some More

Search Terms of the Month

top subscription based mmo titles
[Pretty much WoW and FFXIV at this point]

bufn jita
[bufn it good]

portable hole wallpaper
[I have a problem visualizing that]

everquest next landmark emulator
[Oh dear no]

delta force 2 fps
[Maybe you need to upgrade your hardware?]

project gorgon meme
[I am not sure it is popular enough for that]

EVE Online

I was in for some of Burn Jita early in the month and went on ops when I could, however it has been a busy month around our house and the time slot for normal ops, which often require setting aside a couple of hours even for a “quick” op, has kept me from being online much during the back half of March.  Other than that there has been the somewhat tepid start of the run up to the CSM13 election.  I’m not sure CCP thought through the results of the changes they implemented.  It feels like they slowed everything down too much.  You can’t really cover a campaign very well until there is an official list of candidates.

Minecraft

I have logged in a bit now and again.  Minecraft remains excellent for times when I want to listen to a podcast or audio book that requires more mental attention that your typical MMORPG leaves free.  Mining and building in Minecraft leaves enough bandwidth for me to listen to Planet Money or the Arms Control Wonk podcast and not loose track of what is going on.  So work on the long overland rail line to the norther forest mansion continued.  In fact, it is almost done.

Pokemon Go

And, speaking of games that don’t take a lot of mental bandwidth, I managed to get to level 32 in Pokemon Go largely through my persistence in playing for at least enough every day to catch at least one Pokemon and visit at least one Pokestop, giving me the daily and weekly bonus xp.

My current state of affairs:

  • Level: 32 (+1)
  • Pokedex status: 294 (+10) caught, 335 (+12) seen
  • Pokemon I want: Lapras, but it remains elusive
  • Current buddy: Pupitar; needs four candies to evolve, but I only get one every 5km

Rift

With Rift Prime I was back into “not Azeroth” again.  And it has been pretty good.  It wasn’t the overwhelming nostalgia wave that hanging around in front of Qeynos killing snakes and kobolds with a mass of other people can bring on… though it is really in Blackburrow or West Karana that I start hitting nostalgia overload… but it was, and remains, good.  As I have said way too many times, the zone Freemarch zone design is very good.

Of course, there have been problems with the server.  And Freemarch is like the Deadmines in WoW, and early slice of good design after which the content can vary wildly in quality.  But for the moment I am on board with it for another month.

World of Warcraft

With the coming of Rift Prime and a busy month something had to give.  Play time in Azeroth was way down.  I did log in just enough to keep progress going on unlocking the last two allied races… I am very close on both… but otherwise I haven’t done much since Darkmoon Faire.  The next Darkmoon Faire will likely seal the deal for my allied race unlocks, at which point it might be time to set WoW aside to wait for the coming Battle for Azeroth pre-expansion events to kick off at some point this summer.

Other Games

I did load up Shroud of the Avatar now that it has officially released, and have been giving it a bit of a test drive.  It is kind of interesting in sort of a built-from-scratch new-yet-retro awkward sort of way.

Coming Up

Tomorrow is April Fools… but it is also Easter.  Will Blizz be up to its usual hi-jinks over a holiday weekend?

We will see if the new quest mechanics in Pokemon Go lead to more play… and more pay… for the game.

For EVE Online Fanfest is coming up on the 12th.  We will see if CCP has anything new to announce.  One thing we should get is the candidate list for the CSM13 election.  And maybe a date for that as well?  Am I asking too much?

At some point in the coming week my 30 days of Patron status is going to expire and I will have to decide if I carry on with Rift Prime or not.

I’ve put in an hour or so into Shroud of the Avatar, but I feel like I could spend more time with it, that it would be worth the effort.  We’ll see if I find the time and inclination.

I might also finish up that rail line in Minecraft.

CSM13 – Hurry Up and Register Your Candidacy!

The first major phase of the CSM13 election season is about to commence.

Coming to a space election near you…

The window of time when you can register yourself as a candidate in the election starts soon.

As mentioned in my Road to CSM13 post earlier this month, the timeline for the election has changed, including the window to register for the ballot.  What was previously a two week window of time has been shrunk to just about four day, running from March 19th through the 23rd.

Now that sounds like five days, but it really isn’t  The registration process won’t be open and accepting entries until 12:00 UTC on the 19th according to CCP.  That is half a day gone.  And, at the far end, CCP has also said that registrations will close at 12:00 on Friday, which is another half a day shaved off.

So you only have a full four days in which to register.

I asked why they tightened up that part of the process so much, expecting to hear something akin to their argument about why they are also making the window for voting small, that most of the action tends to happen on the first day or the last day, so a long middle period isn’t all that necessary.

Instead the answer I got was that they wanted people to be able to start campaigning as soon as possible, something that seemed increasingly nonsensical the more I thought about it.

There won’t be an official ballot until Fanfest, which is coming mid-April, which will be the marking point as to who really is a candidate and who is not.  Anybody can campaign before then, and some already are, so shortening the registration period seems like an ineffectual way to extend campaigning.  Maybe they just want to cut down the list of candidates by making the window smaller.

Anyway, if you want to run, be ready to register before 12:00 UTC on March 23rd.

Meanwhile, as a reminded, here is the CXM13 election schedule as we know it so far:

  • Applications are open – March 19 to 23
  • Application processing – March 23 to April 11
  • Candidates for CSM 13 are announced – FANFEST (April 12-14)
  • Voting will take place late April/May – Dates will be announced later in a separate blog
  • Spring/Summer – CSM 13 onboarding & orientation
  • CSM 13 Summit 1 – September (likely dates are Sept 3-6)
  • CSM 13 Summit 2 – February

The Road to CSM13

Back in early February we learned that one of the outcomes of the Winter summit was a list of changes to the CSM election process.  In summary:

  • Move the CSM elections to a point later in the year
  • Increase the amount of time for campaigns
  • Reduce the actual time spent voting
  • Announce the results sooner

The reasoning behind them is covered in the link above.  Now CCP has followed up to fill in some of the details as to how this will play out.

Coming to a space election near you…

The plan so far:

  • Applications are open – March 19 to 23
  • Application processing – March 23 to April 11
  • Candidates for CSM 13 are announced – FANFEST (April 12-14)
  • Voting will take place late April/May – Dates will be announced later in a separate blog
  • Spring/Summer – CSM 13 onboarding & orientation
  • CSM 13 Summit 1 – September (likely dates are Sept 3-6)
  • CSM 13 Summit 2 – February

I am going to say, up front, that the application period seems pretty short.  I am not sure that was part of the original plan, or something new to cut down on the number of candidates, but last year the application period ran for two weeks, February 3 to 17.  14 days to 4 days is more than a bit of a cut.

It seems like the second step, processing all those crazy applications, could be trimmed back a bit to allow more time for applications, since that only took two weeks last time around.  Or they could just start accepting them earlier.

I actually went and asked about this on the forum thread setup to discuss this.  Of course, I showed up to as a question about the process only to find a thread mired knee deep in the usual debates about the CSM and CCP and how things should be.  Welcome to EVE Online.

I was wondering if, as with the voting aspect of the process, they might have some insider insight.  Maybe almost everybody who runs applies on the first day anyway, so the two week window wasn’t really helping anybody.

Surprisingly, to me at least because my expectations, as set by the industry as a whole, are to never expect to hear anything ever about any comment or question, CCP Guard responded and said that the window for applications wasn’t felt to be as important as the actual notice and run up time to get things in order.

Then I pointed out that last year, from announcement to the final day of applications, players had 40 days while this year it was only 24 days, and that was all I heard about that as the thread continued to be people complaining about various aspects of the CSM, like the NDA requirement.

Anyway, beyond that we’re back on track again, with the candidates being announced at Fanfest.

After that things get a bit vague.  The plan was to have a longer campaign season followed by a shorter span for actual voting.  Again looking at last year, the time between candidates being announced and when voting began was about a week, after which voting ran on for three weeks.

If they reverse that ratio April seems unlikely as far as the start of voting.  I would guess that, allowing for a 3 to 4 week campaigning period to get us all completely bored with space politics, we might be looking at the election starting on May 6 or May 13.

And after that we’ll get some election results, presumably much more quickly than last year, and then the newly elected CSM13 can start in on all of their CSM-y things while people complain about the results and null sec winning too many seats.

Anyway, if you want to run have your passport handy and meet the following criteria:

  • Your account must be older than 60 days at the time candidacy applications close.
  • Characters on both Alpha and Omega accounts are eligible to run.
  • You must have a history of honoring the EULA and the Terms of Service. We will screen every applicant thoroughly and EULA/TOS violations on your record can result in a rejected application.
  • Your account must have updated and correct information at the time of your application. This includes; your real life name, correct date of birth and the same email you use to submit your application. To view and edit this information go to the account management website.
  • Candidates must have reached 18 years of age. If the legal adult age in your home country (the age at which you have the legal capacity to enter into a contract) is higher than 18, that number applies instead.
  • As an applicant, you must consent to provide your personal details to CCP, including your real name and a copy of your passport. CCP needs to affirm your real life identity for NDA contract purposes and the ability to travel to summits in Iceland is a key function of the CSM.
  • If you do not currently have a valid passport, we will accept a picture/scan of a valid and approved passport application accompanied with a picture of your driver‘s license.
  • You must consent to sharing your country of origin with the EVE Community and having it displayed on the EVE Online website. You will not be required to share any other personal information with the EVE community.
  • If you are running as an “alt” and you control a character that has a reputation in the EVE universe, CCP may require you to run under that identity at its full discretion.

Then follow directions on the dev blog to apply to be a candidate.

CCP and Proposed Changes to CSM Elections

CCP announced yesterday that the minutes from the CSM12 Winter Summit are now available for your perusal.

CSM12 still rolling along

The minutes, as always, seem as much a tool to irritate as to inform.  That is just the nature of the beast.  The minutes are a brief record… in 77 pages… of people talking about EVE Online, do people actually doing anything about it.  And the CCP people often respond to ideas or questions in the same way, that they’ve discussed or thought about this or that, but never had time or never got to it.

Because there is the reality of software development; you always have more ideas than time and everything always takes longer than you think.  If, sitting on the outside looking in, you think something should be easy… like, say, remove the DUST514 references from the chat windows… it is probably because you lack the knowledge surrounding it.

So they are there, read them, mine out the few chunks of data, try to read the tea leaves that form the rest, and move on.  Exploding on the forums probably won’t help anything, but if it will make you feel better you can join in.

One item to which CCP decided attention to in their dev blog post was a proposed change up to the CSM elections.  As somebody who has never been a fan of the players electing a focus group… I called the whole thing the Galactic Student Council nearly a decade back… changes in the election process often strike me as rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic; the new layout may be nice, but it isn’t going to change the end result.

In the case of the CSM, popularity or being the candidate of an organized group, as opposed to deep game knowledge, wins.  And, of course, null sec is the most organized out of necessity, so guess who is pretty much guaranteed to secure at least half the seats?  So that we get anybody with deep knowledge of aspects of the game is as much chance as anything, though we don’t seem to have as many vanity candidates winning recently.  It seems that people eventually figured out what a “free trip to Iceland” really meant.

Not that I think deep knowledge could change things or “make” CCP do anything.  I like to imagine new, dewy-eyed and determined CSM members showing up in Iceland set to change things and walking away ashen faced like they just got a tour of Voronezh Meat Packing Plant #12.  As with sausages, it is probably best that you not look to hard at how software is made.

Anyway, I digress.

The changes being proposed are, as I read them:

  • Move the CSM elections to a point later in the year
  • Increase the amount of time for campaigns
  • Reduce the actual time spent voting
  • Announce the results sooner

The first point seems to come from the experience of the current CSM members who felt that after Fan Fest, when development starts to slow down a bit as summer vacations begin, would be a better time to bring new members on board.  I don’t think it is a CSM12 conspiracy to extend their own tenure for a couple months, but you never know.

The second, extending the time from when we know the official candidate list through until voting begins, seems to be rooted in the charming belief that the people who aren’t paying attention and who never vote might change their minds if only there was more time to try to distinguish between the huge grid of avatars from which they get to select.

The third point, reducing the actual duration of voting, seems to contradict the above, but really what it means is that CCP has data on actual voting as opposed to campaigning.  They say most people vote on the first day or the last day, basically those were were aching to vote and those who said, “Oh crap, I’d better vote!”  That seems to make sense, but I am sure somebody will cry “voter suppression” over the proposed change.

And then there are the results, which CCP knows pretty much straight away, but which they sit on for weeks and weeks so they can announce them at Fan Fest.  I guess we’ll just have to do without that particular aspect of Fan Fest which, as somebody who will only ever see Fan Fest over a live stream, works for me.

So sure.  Make the changes.  I strongly suspect that they won’t alter the expected outcome and will just give the same people who complain every year about the same things regarding the elections another bullet point or two for their list as we roll on into CSM 13.