Tag Archives: POS

A New Monument in Molea

Out in the Khanid region, in the Amdimmah constellation, is the system of Molea.

On the route from Amarr to the null sec regions of Catch and Querious, many capsuleers no doubt pass through the system every day, warping from gate to gate on their journey.

But in the system, at the second planets only moon, there is a POS tower anchored.  Around it are many small secure containers within the sphere of where the force field would be, if the tower was fueled.

You might have to use the right overview setting to see them, but they are there.

Containers revealed

That is the Molea Cemetary.

Each container has an inscription, the name of a fallen capsuleer.

Some inscriptions

Some have fallen in game, others in real life.  If you wish to read them, it is probably easiest just to get on grid with the tower by warping to planet II, moon 1 and doing a minimum range directional scan.

Easier to read in the dscan window

Started by capsuleer Azia Burgi more than a decade back, it is another example of a player initiative that gained a life of its own.  The POS tower became necessary when a game update made it possible for the dead to despawn.  Being within the POS force field radius prevents that, a solution that served for many years.

And then came the Onslaught expansion in November of 2018, which moved the final remaining functions from POS modules to Upwell structures.  The days of the POS, the Player Owned Startbase, seemed numbered and there was talk of giving the troublesome code base a viking funeral.

A concern that came up, back when talk of the end of the POS was being discussed, was what would happen with Molea.  Without the POS tower in place all the markers would eventually disappear.  CCP promised to look into that.  Since then, we had not heard much, though the venerable POS remains in the game, even becoming an aspect of the current war in the southwest of null sec.

Then, earlier this week, CCP unveiled their plan.

After downtime on Tuesday a monument appeared in Molea, the Fallen Capsuleer Memorial.

Anchored below the POS tower, it features three bassalt wings centered on what appears to be a golden cyno beacon.

The new memorial in Molea

A light shines up from the beacon towards the POS tower, illuminating a capsule which features two capsuleers, freed from its embrace, yet still attached, able to gaze out upon the stars with their own eyes.

Atop the memorial

The new memorial has the effect of keeping anything within 200km of it from despawning, so even if the POS tower goes away the containers and their messages will remain floating in space so long as the servers remain up.

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POS Shoots are Still a Thing

It is the middle of 2020.  Upwell Structures took over the last bit of functionality from the venerable POS, the Player Owned Starbase of old, back in November of 2018 with the Onslaught expansion.  There was talk by CCP of finally removing the legendarily complicated, unsustainable spaghetti code from the game and giving it a Viking funeral.

I have been wondering since then if any POS I shoot might be the last I see.

They were once the center of system control in null sec, before Dominion sov came about, the place where you manufactured everything up to titans, something in space you could own, and now…

And now I seem to be out shooting one or two every night.

Setting a reinforcement timer on a TEST POS

We were warned almost a month ago now, back when TEST announced that they would be cancelling the NIP between Legacy Coalition and the Imperium, that we needed to get the ADMs up in critical systems because it was expected that TEST would use the tactic of dropping small Upwell structures, usually the Raitaru, all over areas they planned to attack.  But, if the ADM in a system is over 4.0 (and you don’t own the ihub… again, ihubs are key) then you cannot drop medium structures.

So ADM work became, and remains, a thing, with fleets going out to mine and rat in critical systems on the periphery of our territory.  Word is that, closer to home, Rorquals scooping up mining anomalies have been quite effective at raising ADMs.

Unable to do the Raitaru drop thing in our space, the fall back was apparently the venerable POS.  Those are not as handy as a Raitaru.  There is no tethering, so you can’t just warp a fleet to a POS to be safe, get repairs, and dock up to refit if you need.  There are also POS passwords and access control lists to control who can come it, how to set the reinforcement timer with stront correctly, and the mechanics of what you can do inside, outside, and next to the force field.  Furthermore, unlike Upwell structures, there are limited locations where you can drop a POS.  It has to go on a moon at a specific point and there can only be one there at a time.  There was quite the art to grabbing all the moons in a system before your opponent could in a strategic system ahead of time.  GSOL used to be champions at this.

But the POS is cheap to deploy and doesn’t appear on everybody’s overview the moment your drop one, the way Upwell structures do.  It is easier to be stealthy.  Somebody has to actively check every moon in every system to see what is there.  You also don’t need a freighter to haul them around.  And so TEST has been slipping into our space to drop them.

Shooting a POS, this time it is a kill

In war we use all the tools at our disposal.  So TEST is no doubt building new POS towers somewhere, while I am sure somewhere a group on our side is regularly scanning down systems to check if any have been dropped.

Didn’t get any fuel in this one

If I understand correctly, we’re even back to camping hostiles fleets that are hiding within POS force fields again.

I still wonder which POS shoot will be my last, but it doesn’t seem like that shoot will be any time soon in coming.  Until then, we’re still doing what we were doing back when I came out to null sec in 2011.

Shooting a White Noise POS back in December 2011

So it goes.

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