Tag Archives: Player-owned Starbase

Now Just So Many Bubbles in Space

Today is the day that player-owned starbases, the POSes of legend, lose their final utility function in New Eden.  With the Onslaught expansion two weeks back the new Upwell navigation structures, the FLEX structures, became available.

Onslaught killed the POS

Those new structures overlapped, with intent to replace, the POS functions of cyno jammer, cyno beacon, and jump bridge.

As CCP has been warning us for the last few days, the two week window when both options would co-exist has come to an end.  All of those POS based jump bridges, cyno jammers, and cyno beacons are now off-line.  Upwell structures are now in place for all of the old POS functions, from capital ship construction to moon mining to reaction farms to navigation.

A POS is now just a tower in space with a bubble around it.

You can still hole up in them, use their protective bubble as a place of safety.

Reavers in a POS in the middle of Insmother back in 2014

And the old POS still has the advantage of being quick to deploy as a forward outpost as well as being somewhat covert.  They don’t show up on everybody’s overview when you drop them, though there are a limited number of locations in any system where they could be placed.  If you didn’t have a prober handy you could always just warp to every moon to scout for them.

Gone too will be the automatic defenses.  A citadel just sits there when you shoot it, just warp scrambling you for a bit when you open up on it before lapsing into passivity unless actively gunned.

And, of course, some of us will miss that feeling of joy when, during a POS shoot, you discover that the defender failed to fuel the stront bay.  Rather than the shoot cutting off when the POS shields hit 25% you got to keep going for a kill on a single op.

My first op with the CFC back in late 2011 was a POS shoot, so the first kill mails I was on were POS towers and modules.  That was also the first time I saw a titan.

Shooting a White Noise tower with a CSAA back in 2011

Some of the aspects of POSes won’t be missed.  There were some arcane aspects to how things worked when it came to the POS, including when cyno jammers worked and when they did not and the whole password thing.  (As Google will confirm, the Goon POS password is always 420)

Others just spell out the POS password with modules

And then there was the POS code base, a source of legend and something brought up to scare young developers.  The POS code was reputed to be an unruly and undocumented monster whose influence was felt far and wide, breaking features with no apparent relation to it.

In the Imperium it was announced that, with today’s transition, GSOL would be heading out to take down all the POS towers and modules that were being used to support jump bridges and the like.  That will free up some corp bookmark space as the FLEX structures will show up on you overview… if you are on the access list and if you have gone in and updated your overview settings.  But if you have those two, they will pretty much act like jump gates… well, jump gates that you may have to pay to use.

Among the features of the new Ansiblex Jump Gate structures is the ability to charge those who use if for the fuel used for their jump.

The new Ansiblex Jump Gate is also a toll bridge of sorts

You can setup a FastPass auto-pay in your wallet, there is a new tab there for just that purpose, though remember that the price you set is the per-unit of fuel price and not the total price, so don’t set it too high lest you accidentally auto-approve payment at some outrageous price-gouging rate.

Much of that, however, is theoretical at the moment because the other joke on all of us is that two weeks was not nearly long enough to get these new structures built and deployed in order to replace the now non-functional POS modules.  Even the ever amazing GSOL says it will be weeks, if not months, before they have fully replaced every jump bridge and beacon.

But that is the way it goes in New Eden.  CCP cares not for your logistics.  In fact, they seem to delight in the suffering of capsuleers from time to time.

And once CCP figured out how to replace the forward deployment aspect of the POS, they will be removing them completely, bringing the eldritch horror of the POS code with it.  So you are on notice that the noble POS may be disappearing completely in 2019.  Go have one last look before they’re all gone.

And then there is the capsuleer cemetery in Molea, which depends on the POS shield to keep the graves from disappearing.  CCP is aware of that, but I haven’t seen any word on what they might do.

Addendum: The Starbase modules have been turned off, but may still look like they are active in the UI.

Tower Tour of New Eden

Player-owned starbases, the POS with its spherical shield and its central tower and its modules, have been a staple of New Eden.  They have long served as bases, manufacturing facilities, and moon mining platforms.

I didn’t really know much about the POS and its operational dynamics in my high sec days.  But once I moved to null sec back in December 2011, the POS became a regular feature of operations.  My first big op in the coalition had us forming up on a titan at one POS to be bridged out in order to shoot a hostiles POS, a tempo of events that would repeat itself many times over the years.

Attack on a capital building POS in 2011

However, the long serving POS is going away.  CCP has been transferring POS capabilities and bonuses to the new Upwell Consortium structures.  Come the Winter release and the introduction of drilling platforms the POS, made completely redundant, will be removed from the game.

I was thinking about this the other night in Hakonen.  We were making a sweep of moons to destroy towers left behind and it just so happened that we hit at least one tower from each empire.  Unlike citadels and the like, POS towers are like ships in that there is a flavor from each of the empires.

As we were shooting them I decided I ought to get a few last screen shots of such structures.  I will no doubt see more as the war goes on, but I might not see them all again.

They were mostly unfueled so the towers… often called “the stick” on ops… were just sitting there in space as we shot them.  Here are towers from the four empires.

Amarr

I actually didn’t think about taking screen shots until after we hit the one Amarr tower on the clean up op.  However, Amarr towers seem to be the most common in New Eden, so I can make up that deficiency with screen shots from recent ops.  Amarr towers show the same design characteristics as Amarr ships, with flowing lines and an affinity for beige.

Minmatar

These come up every so often, but not so much as Amarr does.  Again, the design aesthetic is that of the empire, in this case rust and raw girders.

Caldari

In the standard Caldari Gray #7, the Caldari tower is less common and more boring.  But it does show damage well.

Gallente

I cannot recall the last time I saw a Gallente tower, with its distinct semi-balcony top.  They are a rare find, so I was glad we got to blow up two.

And so it goes.  Blown up, but not too long before their extinction.

This post hardly captures the full variety of tower, which come in different sizes and have pirate faction versions available, not to mention the variety of modules, but it gives a flavor of what is out there in New Eden.

Soon ops will stage solely out of citadels and no longer will we be warped to a POS to get in range of a titan, trying not to bounce off the shield, waiting for the words, “Bridge up! Jump! Jump! Jump!” to be spoken over coms.

An performance recreated thousands of times