Thursday, 13 August 2015

Jump Change Town Hall Meeting - Morning after the Night Before

I listened to about an hour of the Jump Fatigue Town hall meeting last night just out of idle curiosity. For those that don't know, Jump Fatigue used to allow a fleet to travel to pretty much any point on the map. It was an awful mechanic. A small fight in Lowsec would suddenly be welped with huge capital fleet from the far side of Nullsec for example. Distance and location was a marginal factor in bringing arms to a fight. It became the goto tactic. Small groups didn't stand a chance of establishing themselves because local spats with their neighbours would be bounced by the big blocks looking for random content.  It had to change and CCP duly heavily compromised Jump Fatigue in the Phoebe release. Originally, the whole extent of the nerf was to apply to jump freighters too as CCP latched onto the idea of localism. But the people and infrastructure to support a local economy didn't exist. Nobody wants your hard earned ratting loot in nullsec. They do however want it in Hisec. To accommodate this uncomfortable truth, the restrictions were relaxed for Jump Freighters (at least for now) and the ISK continued to flow.

Beyond that, the jump changes themselves highlighted the obvious. Null is empty.  To find a fight your capitals now have to travel a long way via risky gates or have your future mobility crippled as a penalty for jumping. The reward for this endeavour is to capture a bit of space. The distance is now hard to sustain and the space itself doesn't bring much additional value. The loser just moves on to another bit of empty space that is a suitable distance from the aggressor so unlikely to put up a massive defence in any case. So it is a pyrrhic victory. Now when you layer on the later Aegis changes, the old battalion of capitals don't have much reason to be deployed (if only for POS grinding). So I get that there are some people that are annoyed that they can no longer play with their boats. I would be if I had devoted that much time to own and fly one.

That said, ultimately the Jump Changes were put in for a good reason and the benefits are real elsewhere in Eve. So that reason won't go away. But there is scope to amend the changes. That at least seemed to be the premise behind the Jump Changes Town hall meeting. It was well attended by CCP and CSM reps. It could have been good. Now I have called out both CSM and CCP in the past. This time it was the players that fell short. They had an opportunity and they blew it. In general terms, (there were exceptions), the players came across as confrontational with a suffocating sense of self entitlement. All the reasons why null is empty (and thereby makes Jump Changes such a issue) were put on display by the sub optimal behaviour. Unsurprisingly, CCP had to take a very defensive position with this onslaught and so the opportunity was missed. One of the few things I could glean amongst the passive aggressive false dichotomies the devs were having to bat away were that CCP are seriously thinking about how to make Null more meaningful. If people had picked up on that rather than emoting gratuitous clich├ęs then Null would certainly be heading to a better place. Way to go.

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