Tag Archives: EVEMon

EVE Online Third Party Apocalypse Day

The deadline in question is May 8th, 2018. On this date, we’ll be shutting down the XML and CREST APIs.

Announcement, Third Party Developer Blog

Today is the day.  It was announced back in January that the old XML and CREST APIs interfaces into EVE Online would be turned off.  The new ESI API has replaced them both.

Those APIs were how many of us got our data into various utilities over the years.  CCP was fairly forward thinking in giving us that access which has allowed third parties to make our lives in New Eden much easier.

Theses APIs have, I suppose, even been a crutch for CCP.  By allowing things like the old EVE Fitting Tool application to be viable let CCP work on other things while leaving the very rudimentary fitting interface in the game to stay as it was for many years.  It allowed third parties to fill in the many gaps in their product.

Of course, it isn’t the end of all of that today.  Plenty of projects have made the transition from XML or CREST to the new ESI API.

Everybody’s favorite zKillboard made the transition a while back.  Likewise, the essetial DOTLAN EVE Maps site made the transition as well, though cut it a bit closer to the wire.

The null sec influence maps have some issues, but are reported to be mostly working.

In the Imperium our character validations swapped over to the ESI API back in March with a deadline to get all players and corporations on it by the middle of last month.  Those who did not make the cut got kicked.  GSF saw a drop of thousands of accounts as a byproduct.

TNT, my own alliance, made the transition more recently.  I am up on the new API there and in our new forums.  I am not sure how reimbursement will work now though.  To submit a loss you have to include the in-game CREST API link.  Did that get updated?  I guess I will find out next time I lose a ship.

Basically, essential things and actively supported projects seem to have made the transition and are mostly running today the way they were yesterday.

The apocalypse has come in the form of languishing projects, things no longer fully supported because the original developer has given up or moved on.  There are many older utilities and sites that were still humming along, able to do their thing mostly okay up until today.

The biggest hit for me on that front is EVEMon.

The familiar logo

The death of EVEMon is a serious blow.  This was the first utility for EVE Online I discovered and it has remained a staple of my time with the game ever since.  I remember when the EVEMon site was hosted over at Battle Clinic, itself a couple years gone.  I launch this application almost every single day when I log into my computer.

And now it is dead.

I am not sure how I am going to replace it.

Sure, there are other utilities that do bits and pieces of what EVEMon did, and the interface within the game has gotten much, much better over the years.  But I have grown so used to EVEMon as a one stop shop to check things across multiple characters over the years that I suspect that I am going to need to hide the icon for it lest I continue to open it up out of habit.

This might be the end of my post every 10 million skill points.  I use EVEMon to collect that data because it was the easiest way to get at it.

So say good-bye to EVE Mon.

My backup plan for doing that post was EVEboard Character Sheets.  However that seems to have been a victim of today’s shut down as well.

Pretty sure those API errors are not temporary…

The site is run by Chribba, and the news section on the front page still points to the now dead API pages, all of which return a 404 if you attempt to visit them.  There is no time stamp on when he did the last update, but it was probably a while back and there is no mention of the new ESI API.  So this could be the end for that site as well.

I also looked into EVE HQ, another utility app, but the current version there still wants you to enter the old API information, so no joy on that front.

These are not the APIs you’re looking for…

There is talk of a future version using the ESI API, but nothing concrete.  Third party developers have lives outside of their utilities.

Today is probably also the final nail in the coffin for the languishing EVE Fitting Tool (EFT).  It hasn’t seen a full update since 2016, but somebody was providing new data files for it to keep it useful.  With the end of access to character data to see if you can fly your spiffy new fit, it feels like it might be time to let that go as well.

There is better news on the Pyfa front, the other ship fitting app.  There was a beta version of the 2.0 release of it made available last week that has the ESI API integrated.

Anyway, there are probably more casualties in the API shut down out there that I haven’t seen.  I didn’t make any sort of detailed survey other than looking for something to replace EVEMon.

My only other concern is reliability.  My experience with ESI so far has been a bit problematic.  As I noted above we have to register our characters with the coalition or get kicked.  That is fine, I did that as soon as it was an option.  However, in going back to check every so often, I have found a couple of my characters unregistered.  Once it was even my main.  I don’t know if this is a problem with the ESI API or the GSF end of things, but now I feel like I have to check on it weekly just to be sure I don’t end up getting kicked.

Life in a null sec coalition.

There is a final eulogy post for the all APIs up on the third party developer site to remember their origin and mark their demise.  In a final ironic twist, there is a link to the “curated” list of third party apps which includes more than a few dead ones, EVEMon included.

And so it goes.

The Demise of BattleClinic

One of the notable thing about EVE Online is its dependence on its community to make the game accessible.  If all the web sites, podcasts, forums, addons, and what not related to WoW suddenly disappeared, you could still play the game pretty well.  There are probably a couple of addons you would really miss (Healium and Master Plan for me), but I would wager that a lot of subscribers have none installed anyway.

But if you took away the EVE Online ecosystem… I think we’d have to recreate it to carry on.  DOTLAN EVE Maps and zKillboard and EVE Fitting Tool and Pyfa and EVE Mon and all manner of sites and forums carry information that a lot of us feel we NEED to play the game.  And so you have to ponder what it means when a bit of that ecosystem fades away.

In this case BattleClinic, long a part of that ecosystem, has shut down.  The site is still there, but its functionality has effectively been put in standby mode.  You can poke at bits of it and see things, but there are bits that are clearly powered down.  The kill board stops at December 19 and you can no longer look up pilots and such.

BattleClinic

Most of us probably know the site mostly from its association with the indispensable EVEMon utility, which it has hosted for years now.  On of my first posts back in 2006 was about EVEMon, and it linked to BattleClinic.

But BattleClinic, which supported various other games since its launch in 2001, including the remaining Star Fleet Command community back when I first saw the site, was also a source of information.  It hosted a forum, had a section for ship fitting where you could propose fits and people would rate and comment on them, and ran its own kill board.

They actually did a big revamp of the site about a year back which added some nice touches.  It allowed me to write a post about which ships I had gotten on the most kill mails with.  Their kill board, which in some ways seemed to be the odd duck amongst the big three, had a number of cool features.

Back in November though it was announced they were going to throw in the towel.

November 29, 2015

We are closing the site in December 2015 and will archive it and Griefwatch for 6 months.
BattleClinic was run, designed, maintained and staffed by 2 part time people: SghnDubh and MrCue, with volunteer support from many fantastic moderators over the years.

It’s been a fun and occasionally frustrating time, and we hope that you’ve enjoyed our offerings. We were the first and most innovative major killboard for Eve, and the first site to allow players to share Eve loadouts. We provided Evemon a permanent home and assisted many other projects. We were the first fansite to display a booth at Fanfest.

We hope you continue to enjoy Eve Online and we wish the founders, staff, and of course the players well. Fight smart, fly safe.

And so it goes.  I did not see anything about why they decided to shut down, but one can make a few easy guesses, not the least of which is that the world, the internet, online gaming, and no doubt the founders themselves, have all changed a lot over the last 15 years.

As noted above, the site itself aligned itself with a number of games over the years.  The archivist completionist me would like to create a definitive list, but then lazy me steps in and mentions effort and how we could be doing something else.

BattleClinic banner circa 2011

BattleClinic banner circa 2011

But poking through the site itself and shuffling through the Wayback Machine at the Internet Archive, I can at least list out the following:

I had to look up some of those games… and some I looked up and couldn’t find anything about them.  I am still not sure what Galaxy Online was, only that there is a Galaxy Online 2.

It looks like things started out with Freelancer and Star Fleet Command, but once down the EVE Online path they went, forever did it dominate their destiny.  Consume them, it did, until the site itself was left only with EVE Online. save for a few mentions about copyrights and trademarks.

Not that being an EVE Online site was a bad thing.  As I noted, it is a game that requires… almost demands… an ecosystem of support sites.  There was room for a lot of people in that pool.  And with its API and the ability for sites to make a little money through selling Time Codes, there was clear support from CCP for the EVE Online ecosystem.

It also helped that, from 2003 into 2013 or so, EVE Online was a growing game, bringing in a steady stream of new players who would set out on the internet in search of something to help them figure out what in the hell was going on in New Eden.

It just isn’t that time any more.  And it certainly isn’t 1999 or 2001 or 2005 any more, when you could throw together a half-assed site like the original Alakazam site for EverQuest and become a sensation and sell your site for a mint.  We are in a different age.

I’d like to thank SghnDubh and MrCue for doing what they did over the years and sticking with it as long as they did.  I think I may have even said hello to one or both of them at GDC one year… 2007 or 2008 I think… when they setup a booth to try and attract some dev attention in order to support more games.  I just wish I had found the site back when Star Fleet Command was still a viable thing, as I used to love that game back in the day.

As for EVEMon, I read somewhere… and I cannot find it now, which is typical me and explains why I write stuff down and bookmark things… that so long as you have the current version, which is 2.2.2, it will update correctly with the next change.  Development of EVEMon will go on.

So that is my post.  BattleClinic, 2001-2015.  It was originally going to be part of a Friday bullet point post, and then I hit the 500 word mark and decided just to run with it.

Is there anything special you remember about the site?

Towards a Confederation of Dreadnoughts

It seems to be an unwritten rule of EVE Online that, once you have a training plan all nailed down and under way, something will come along to make you change it.

And then change it again.

I lucked out to a certain extent when I moved out to null sec space back in December 2011.  I showed up just in time for the CFC to start up the Drake fleet doctrine, a ship I was already exceptionally well skilled to fly.  I think I had all related skills to level IV or V at the outset and have since honed them up even more.  I have many a post here about flying with Drake fleet.

Some of us in a line

Happy Days in Drake Fleet

That luck gave me time to train up for logistics, so I was able to fly a Scimitar with Drake fleet or Alpha fleet.  I trained a little for Alpha fleet as well, but there was not much pressure because there was a tech 1 Megathron fit I could fly already.  So I could idly train whatever I wanted.

I got myself set for Tengu fleet, just in case.  I never actually flew the Tengu part, sticking to logistics there.  When Tech fleet came out as an armor tanked doctrine, I trained up that part of logistics as well.  I trained up Planetary Management, with the idea of setting up a bit of semi-passive income at some point.  I haven’t quite gotten there yet.

And then came the war in Fountain and the subsequent doctrine changes.  Drakes had been nerfed into oblivion by CCP, Tengu and Tech fleets were not holding up, so new plans were made.  Sure, I had Caracals covered when they were thrown in as a cheap stop-gap, and it doesn’t take much to fly a Celestis.  But when Batltec fleet was announced, and the mighty Megathron was the order of the day, I was a few skills shy.  I could fly logistics, but not the Megathron fit.  And while that was all of a day’s training, I was still at the very low end for armor tanking skills.  How I missed Drakes.

I have a lot of Megathron screen shots now

And then we added AHACs with lasers and Harpy fleet and I was clearly behind the times.

So about three weeks back I put together a plan in EVE Mon titled “Fly All the Subcaps!” and put in all the things that might ever get included in a future doctrine, training them  all up to level IV (or V when needed), giving me about a 200 day training plan.  You would think with 107 million skill points, I would be covered, but there are a lot of skills in EVE Online.  I biased the plan towards things that would help current doctrines first, so Armor Honeycombing was in there early, and set off training.

And then the fighting in Fountain ended and rumors started that we would be moving to Fountain.  Gaff poked me and suggested that it might be a good thing to train up to fly a carrier so as to be able to haul ships back and forth at need.  If we moved to Fountain, I had a pile of ships to move there, and if we didn’t, I had a pile to move back to Deklein.

That seemed like a plan just reasonable enough to blow up my previous plan.  And I had laid some groundwork for it during my aimless training time.  I had Jump Drive Operation up to V and Jump Drive Calibration to IV.  Flying a carrier… and I could chose any one, they were all equidistant… was just 19 days away.  So off I went on that plan, the Archon being my target.

Archon under fire

Not THAT kind of target!

And then, a week into that, with the Fountain fully taken, there was an Alliance Update that, among other things, assigned new training goals.  We were asked to max out sentry drones and work towards flying a dreadnought.  The plan is to abuse the “assign drones to the FC” mechanic (which did not work all that well for TEST at G95F or 6VDT) until CCP fixes it and to fling dreadnoughts at everything in future conflicts.

Since I was already at maximum skills for sentry drones (trained them years back and never really used them until now) I started looking at dreads.

I am equidistant in training time from 3 of the 4 dreadnoughts, though the Phoenix is out due to being unsuitable for a “blap dread” (a subcap shooting dreadnought) fit.  (Gaff, who owns a Phoenix, blames me for this, saying I told him to go Caldari back in 2007.) The Revelation is the furthest out of reach, as I am way behind in laser weaponry.  So the choice is between the Moros and the Naglfar.

The Moros seems to be the favored choice among many who purport to know best.  They certainly seem common.  They are a bit bulbous, looking a bit like Dabiggreenboat, to coin a phrase.

Moros Firing

Moros Firing at 3WE-KY

And then there is the smaller, but quite vocal Naglfar faction, whose primary arguments are that it uses no capacitor for its guns and looks damn cool with its vertical orientation.

Naglfars stand out among dreadnoughts

Fortunately, the work I started on for flying a carrier applies to dreadnoughts, and I have a bit of time to decide on which one to choose.

And I have to start working on earning some ISK.  This is going to cost.  The skills alone are pricy, and I haven’t even gotten a price on hulls and fittings yet.

Anyway, once I finish the dreadnought plan and then the carrier plan, I can get back to my subcap plan.  Unless something else comes up.

And something else always comes up.

Whiskey Tengu Foxtrot?

What to do with all that ISK I have in my wallet?

A few weeks back I was sitting in EVE Online.  Star Trek Online was down and I had had all of the WoW I could take for the day.  So there I was in New Eden wondering what to do.

I started thinking about one of my predictions for 2010, that strategic cruisers would become a common sight.  Of course, some people objected to that right away, saying that they were already a common sight in their neck of the woods.  That area is usually called 0.0 space, and my friend Meclin did confirm that the tech 3 ships were in fact not a unique sight out there.

I had never seen one however.  But then I, like a majority of EVE players, never go into 0.0 space, so I would dispute that they are a common sight.  I see most every ship hovering around Amarr station, so that is my measure for what is a common sight and what is not.

Of course, sitting there with no real plan and a bunch of ISK, I figured that I could make my prediction come true by buying my own strategic cruiser.  Money + boredom = expensive new experiment!

The first thing I needed was the basic skill. Easy and not too expensive:

Caldari Strategic Cruiser – 1,350,000 ISK

You only need the first level of skill to qualify for the ship.  That takes just a few minutes.

And then there was the ship itself.  The Caldari strategic cruiser is called the Tengu, which is what lead to the title of the post.

Tengu: 207,000,000 ISK

So I rushed off to assemble the new ship to see what it looked like.  Only there was a problem.

You can’t just fly the ship without its subsystems.  Heck, you cannot even assemble the ship.  You get this message.

There were subsystems available, but of course that requires more skills.

I had to run off and buy those.  They were 4,500,000 ISK each, and I needed five.

  • Caldari Defensive Subsystem
  • Caldari Electronics Subsystem
  • Caldari Engineering Subsystem
  • Caldari Offensive Subsystem
  • Caldari Propulsion Subsystem

This is how it goes with me and EVE.  Every impulse buy inevitably requires me to come up with at least another skill and some additional equipment to support the purchase.

The skills were quick.  I injected all five and queued up the first level for each, then went to Amarr to look for subsystems.  All the subsystems for the Tengu were available, but which to choose?

Fortunately in EVE most buying decisions are not irreversible.  Very few items are “bind on equip” if you will.  Ships, ship fittings, and the like can be repackaged and resold on the market.  So I picked five likely looking fittings without much in the way of research, dropping about 120,000,000 ISK in the process.

I was then able to assemble the ship.


Now I just had to activate the ship and take her out for a spin.  But when moving my pod to the ship I got one last warning.

Oh yeah, if the ship gets blown up, you lose some of your subsystem skill points.  Something of a dis-incentive to train them to level five I suppose.

But, at last, I was able to get into space with the Tengu.

Ship Name: Whiskey Tengu Foxtrt

Like a lot of Caldari ships, her beauty is more in her technical specifications than in her appearance.

Only then did I start looking at possible fittings for the Tengu.  It looks like I’ll need to work on my heavy missiles skills so I can mount tech II launchers, since the Tengu is limited to cruiser/battlecruiser modules.

Another hobby ship with which to tinker.  Time to get out EVEMon and the EVE Fitting Tool to plot out a possible level 4 mission runner fit.

EVEMon, BattleClinic, and Star Trek Online

EVEMon is, without a doubt, my favorite EVE Online utility.

If I had to choose just one utility for EVE Online, EVEMon would be it.

And it recently got even better.

The latest version of the utility now shows your training queue and can, if you trust it with the right API code, show you all of your current market orders.

So you can keep an eye on your financial empire as well as your skill training.

So the team at BattleClinic.com have my respect on that front.

But in more good news, they have also opened up a section of their site devoted to Star Trek Online, and they are talking about creating some tools for STO.

Of course, the STO connection makes sense not only because they support other space games like EVE Online, but because they have had a section devoted to Star Fleet Command, which might be the last Star Trek game I actually really liked.  And STO has the possibility of becoming the spiritual successor to that game.

So that is something else to keep an eye on.

The Age of Cerberus?

I was playing the EVEMon “what if” game the other day with my alt, just to see how much training he would need to get into different ships when I hit the Heavy Assault Ship section and found out that he was less than a day from flying one of those nasty cruiser-class killers.

So I started playing around with configurations in EVE Fitting Tool.  The missile oriented Caldari Heavy Assault Ship, the Cerberus, certainly has a lot going for it.  With his skills, my alt can put together a pretty fearsome setup in a Cerberus, including one where I could leave a Medium Shield Booster II running all the time with a stable capacitor.  With large pools of CPU and power to draw on I was also able to fill all five launcher slots with Heavy Missile Launcher II modules.

All very interesting.

And then I brought up my alt’s Drake in EFT and started to compare.

The Cerberus can lock targets further out (100km vs. 75km), locks those targets faster, moves a little bit faster (not unimportant when facing ships with turrets), and, surprisingly, has a much bigger cargo hold.

The Drake, on the other hand, can mount those same five tech II launchers, plus two more tech I launchers, and can also throw five light drones into the fray, all of which puts the Drake ahead in sheer damage output.

Then there is the mighty-mighty Drake tank.  Sometimes, when running level 4 missions with my main and my alt, I just throw my alt in to grab aggro with his Drake.  I know the Drake’s shield will hold up long enough for me to whittle down the bad guys and since it is completely passive I do not have to fiddle with anything. (Whittle & fiddle?)

And finally there is the price.  In my region I calculate that I can buy and fit three Drake hulls for the same amount of ISK it would take to acquire the Cerberus and its fittings.  I recognize that there is a certain amount of “cool” factor with the Cerberus, but is it worth three Drakes?

So I have to conclude that the Cerberus might not be the best choice for somebody who primarily runs missions.

Not that I won’t buy one and try it, just to see.  One of the joys of EVE is that little is “bind on equip” if you will, so if I don’t like it, I can always put it up for sale if I don’t like it.  But I wonder if I should bother.

Sizing Up a Vulture

The wonder of EVE is not only figuring out what you want to do, but then figuring out how you get there, how much it will cost, and how long it is going to take.

So when I noted that my mining alt had evolved into a decent combat alt, it was suggested by Andreaz that I look into Command Ships as a possible path forward for him.

That meant it was time to crank up everybody’s favorite EVE Online toys utilities, EVEMon and the EVE Fitting Tool.  Some days I am in those two more than I am in the game.

There are two Caldari Command Ships, the Vulture and the Nighthawk.  I picked the Vulture to work with.

A quick mock up of a Vulture with the fittings currently on my Drake showed a good 45% boost in effective shield strength.  Granted, I lose two missile launcher hard points, but that much of a boost over an already awesome low maintenance shield tank makes it all worth it.  This is a ship worth having.

Then I had to look into the cost.  Being a tech II ship, I gave up on any idea of building it myself.  I would need a couple of long skills to manage that, so I started pricing Vultures on the market and available via contracts.  From that it looks like a Vulture is somewhere between 105 and 130 million ISK.  More expensive than, say, a Raven, but on par with a Rokh both in price and coolness.

Finally, I made it to the usual EVE back-hand slap.  I want it today, I can afford it today, but when can I fly the damn thing?

57 Days.

If I keep on the true path of training, let not a minute got to waste between skills, and do not get distracted by other wants and desires, I can fly a Vulture on January 21st, 2009.

That’s the way things go in EVE.

At least I was already well into one of the two long skills in the training plan.  In fact, I just wrapped up Battlecruisers V this morning and started on Caldari Cruiser V, a 21 day skill to overcome.   The next longest skill on the list is Long Range Targeting V, which comes in just over 8 days, and then skills fall into a pile of four days or less cycles.

And, of course, if I am going to bother with a command ship, I should go all out and get the warfare link modules going along with the associate implants.  I can get the first one fully up and running by some time in March of 2009.

EVE is a game of long term goals, and I had no other plans for my alt in any case.