Welcome to Jester's Trek.
I'm your host, Jester. I've been an EVE Online player for about six years. One of my four mains is Ripard Teg, pictured at left. Sadly, I've succumbed to "bittervet" disease, but I'm wandering the New Eden landscape (and from time to time, the MMO landscape) in search of a cure.
You can follow along, if you want...

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Well, that escalated quickly

First, if you haven't already done so, go out and read this masterful article by Lockefox on TMC.  It is -- by far -- the best thing written on TMC so far this year, an incisive, well-researched article into the history of moon-goo in general and its impact on the CFC in particular.  Go read it, in full.  I'll wait.

Back?  OK, let's talk about it.  In particular, I want to call your attention to this graph on page three:


That single little graph, more than any other factor, is probably what sealed the fate of TEST in Fountain.  It documents the collapse of a financial empire that makes the Great Depression's tumble pale by comparison.  Presented in that context, the doom of anyone near CFC territory holding the new R64s is obvious.  If tech was a drug, that graph charts the withdrawal symptoms and they ain't pretty.  The corresponding graph detailing the prices of the new R64s post-Odyssey finished the job.  That thick green line, showing the average price of R64s at a bit over 20k ISK per unit tells the tale.  As I write this, technetium is below 14k per unit.  At 80k per unit for tech, the future of the CFC's empire was secure.  At 25k or less?  Not so much.

Short version: even if the CFC held every moon in EVE, they probably couldn't finance the lavish ship replacement program that their empire was built on.

I could have easily called the blog post "Be careful what you wish for".  Or just maybe "The heavens blaze forth the death of Princes".  I'll let Mord Fiddle have that second title, because I can't imagine it's too long before he starts gloating.  I just checked.  He hasn't posted his CFC post-moon analysis.  It's definitely coming.  I can feel it.

So let me say it again and let's talk about this bit in particular: even if the CFC held every moon in EVE, they couldn't finance the lavish ship replacement program that their empire has been built on.  CCP has... very quietly... very sneakily... given people what they've been asking for for going on four years now.  We live in a post-moon New Eden.  Sure, moons are still going to be valuable.  At today's prices depending on the size of the tower, dysprosium and neodymium are going to be worth about 1.5 billion a month, promethium about 1.3 or so.  It's not money to turn your nose up at.  But it's also not the seven or eight or more billion per month that tech once poured into an alliance's coffers every moon.  After those three moon-goos, the values drop precipitously.  Tech is barely worth a half billion per moon per month.  A few moons have to be mined at a loss.

We live in a post-moon New Eden.  And it happened very quietly while most of EVE wasn't looking.  Now we have to stop and seriously consider: are things about to get better or worse?

The CFC had a long, long time to think about this.  We were hearing about their post-moon plans and strategies and ideas as long as two years ago.  But I'm not convinced they ever really actually truly believed it would happen.  Make no mistake: the CFC is addicted to its SRP.  But now the bottle is empty, the liquor store is closed and bankrupt, and the alcoholic is looking around in a bit of a bleary stupor wondering where the next fix is coming from.  And the answer has come down from on high...

...pubbie scrublords.

Pubbie scrublord money is where the next fix is coming from.  Goons are about to become that very thing they have despised forever: slumlord renters with a contact list even more full of blues, their space full of blue Tengus and Ishtars and Retrievers and Taloses and even PvE battleships that they aren't allowed to shoot... that they aren't even allowed to think about shooting... that they aren't even allowed to scam into thinking that they might shoot.  Oh dear Heaven, how the mighty have fallen.

And what makes it doubly glorious is that the long asked-for treaties and rent control measures that EVE's existing slumlords have been asking for for about a thousand years aren't in the game.  The fixes and changes and mechanics that could have made this at least semi-palatable to the average Goon -- that CFC leadership could have started stomping their feet to obtain two years ago -- are not in place and aren't going to be in place.  Meaning that CFC leadership had to announce a little bit shame-facedly that Goons aren't allowed to scam would-be renters any more because of the danger of scaring off the real renters that they are so desperately going to need... nowish.

Wherever SirMolle is, he's cracking a beer and having a good long laugh.

Anyway, the full court press to convince Goons that this is a good thing -- really! -- has begun in earnest, spear-headed by that very same TMC.  All the while, CFC members are also doing their very best to convince themselves that they are definitely not Band of Brothers... mostly I think because they're saying they aren't expecting their renters to die gloriously for them as cannon fodder or even to form up to defend their homes because Goons -- Goons! -- Goons! -- will be doing it for them!

And holy crap I can't believe I just typed that.

When The Mittani was bounced off CSM7 last year, one of the things he said in his first GSF address to the troops afterward was that he wasn't even all that upset about it.  The reason was because being a good CSM member -- whose job it was to stand up for EVE players -- and being a good Goon -- whose job it is to troll and torture EVE players -- were fundamentally incompatible goals.  Needless to say, it's going to be quite interesting watching GSF having to adjust to having some pubbies that they have to treat well and protect while having other pubbies that they can still gank in high-sec somewhere.

But finally, let's come briefly back to the question I asked earlier: is this better or worse for New Eden?  And that I think deserves a post to itself.  Look for that tomorrow.

32 comments:

  1. The sweet and delicious Irony.

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  2. bahahaha I was hoping you were gonna link to Poe

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  3. Many null sec entities, CFC among them, ware calling for alliance funding from ground up. This is it. Lesson of the story - be careful what you wish for, you may well get it.

    I for one like it, as more quality space = more renters = more money, which in turn drives the conflict, especially for deep null space. More importantly, there's no possibility of rigging the market, which is a good thing imo.

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  4. You know what, I am totally okay with my shiny ships being paid for by pubbie scrublords slaving away in a anomaly in some arse-end system in vale of whatever that I will probably never visit.

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  5. Whence this reputation for gloating?

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  6. Here I am trying to think of another product or service which spends years insulting the customer - then expects to said client to pay in the hope that it is free of fault or defect.

    Since it occured to me: does anybody else picture the fuhrerbunker scene on youtube with senior goons now telling mittans that renting to pubbies is a must?

    Mittans must be only the player in the history of CSM who negative experience revolves around working for CCP for free. But needed to repeat the process to get confirmation.

    I was subtly amused by some off-handing comments that the Goons needing to become slumlords was the fault of CCP. Meanwhile the rest of us Bohemians earn our explosions through some industry, trading or npc kills; courtesy of "the way the game was intended";

    http://www.eveonline.com/sandbox/manufacturer/

    that official site must needing, I get a 404 for slumlord.

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  7. Ha!

    Goons forced to admit they need "pubbies" !

    Must be galling for them.

    Better or worse ? Very interesting question. My gut reaction leads one way; however, I expect the unintended consequences will lead in twisty directions and will take a long time to settle out.

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  8. I would say it is a good change, the ability to farm a given region of null-sec through serfdom + moon-goo and logistics will probably create fractures in the power blocks.

    You might see landlords fighting for larger (or better) renters/areas than before.

    As for t2 in general, a decrease in price and adjustment in function (read ship balance), will translate into a much more mixed fleet doctrine.

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  9. I'm sure Lucas Kell will be here shortly to tell you that you don't know what you are talking about. Following shortly by Mynnna. They have been humping Gevlon Goblin's leg all week.

    The nonsense spewed by these folks, in an attempt to get their feet out of their mouth is that the space is sitting empty and it makes such good sense to rent it that only an idiot would refuse to do so. That logic ignores the fact that the Goons have refused to rent it for years now. So please tell us all, dear Goons, who are the idiots again?

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  10. When goons entered this game, they were angry at BoB for various crimes. Some of them justified - like the T20 incident - some not. They swore up and down that they were morally better, and were better organised and better at the game. They swore that they'd make the lives of everyone miserable. As Darius Johnson said at fanfest once, "We're not here to ruin THE game, we're here to ruin YOUR game". And they did just that for a long time.

    Now they have to put up with a renting program, the very thing that made them angry with BoB. They've become exactly what they despised for so very long. The worse part of it is that they've spent so long ruining the game of others, that the list of people who would actually want to rent from them and trust them enough to rent from them is a very, very short list of formerly allied CFC/RSF bloc corps and alliances. The grand majority of those who might otherwise consider the idea, that live in highsec but want to move to nullsec? They all hate the goons. Their response to being offered a renter status in null is likely to be 'FUCK YOU!' or something along those lines.

    Goons have lived long enough to see themselves become exactly what they fought against for so very long.

    Hilarious.

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  11. Well, first off, you forgot to mention that null sec ice fields are worth a bazillion ISK. Go back to the pirated CSM comments where Fozzie discusses how much ISK a 3 ice belt system is worth compared to moons.

    2nd, do you seriously believe that the goons will actually state accurate moon goo facts and figures. They are masters of propaganda. And even if the current numbers that were posted are accurate, who long until the cartels start forcing the prices up again, even with the alchemy caps in place now?

    3rd, there is zero chance that goons would have agreed to a huge drop in their income, unless CCP promised them something bigger. As I have stated several times, that will be T2 industry being gutted in high sec, and handed to null sec. The amount of money that will be generated by controlling T2 production will dwarf moon goo income at it's zenith.

    The goons and other station holders will make money in oh so many ways:

    Ore and ice station refining taxes.
    Rental fees.
    R&D slots at stations (going to be interesting how the cartels control R&D slots at POS's)
    Mfg slots at stations.
    Control of sales of T2 ships and modules.
    Control of sales of ice products.

    Oh, and with the December release, null sec stations will be given another order of magnitude buff in station slots, with a huge slash to availability at high sec/low sec stations, making the null sec ice fields that more valuable.

    Goons and the other cartels will be even richer than they are now, with the December release and the May 2014 release. The devastation of high sec will be well on its way by May, and anyone who wants to gain any ISK in this game will be forced to pay a large tithe to the RMT lords.

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  12. Very powerful article. Analysis like this is why your blog is the second thing I read after I wake up every day. (RL news comes first).

    Keep up the excellent work both here and on the CSM.

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    1. That's funny I check this site, then other eve sites/blogs, then the RL news.

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  13. Ripard Teg being used now to do the propaganda of Goons with the new message "don't worry renting from goons is safe now, really, I said really, please really..."

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  14. Do let's recall history. Not in EVE, in the real world. In the real world, historically, there has been no problem at all in convincing conquerers how to productively exploit the conquered. Taxes are paid unto this very day, and people are convinced it is appropriate and fair and good. How did they do this? Easy: there is the aristocracy, the people that matter. There are your own serfs or peasants, and like other livestock they matter somewhat, exactly because you benefit from their production. Then there is everybody else.

    I think Goons are smart enough to learn a trinary division of EVE players, instead of just a binary one. They can still disdain the "pubbies", including their own, as non-warriors.

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    1. Umm taxes by the conquered?

      Only a complete idiot would think that taxes in this manner in this day and age.

      It is a particularly skewed believe that all taxes are bad. There is a spectrum, from too little to too much. To decry all taxation as 'bad' is simply an immature and unsophisticated position.

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  15. Well, in a game where the content is the people, more interesting is always better - and I have to say, Goons with renters is more entertaining for just about everyone except Goons.

    Imagine the stories that'll come out of this.

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  16. "An R32 moon is worth between 300M-800M/month for its holder."

    "R64s are what drive conflict, especially on the west side of the map. Each point on the map above yields between 0.9B-2.1B/month for its holder."

    300-800m is easily made doing a few days of Level4 missions in hi-sec. Low level market players are pulling .9-2.1B/month. Why would anyone invest in the ISK, and time to stage a POS, collect moon minerals, pay POS fuel, and defend said moon against hostiles/awoxers?

    Null is set to become more of the deserted wasteland for the voluntary poor than it already is.





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    1. Are you retarded? Because unlike market manipulation and mission farming, moons can be exploited en masse with the only continued time investment being fuelling and hauling.

      Sure, playing the markets can net you similar monthly income as a single R64 moon. But hey, what's that, your alliance controls twenty R64 moons?

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    2. Oh, my fault. You must be the one guy controlling the moons and youve got a bunch of brainless F1 monkeys fighting for the preservation of your passive income.

      Go have several seats sir.

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  17. No, I don't think it's better. CCP has kinda slowly killed off alternative income streams in Null.

    Drone Mining: Gone.
    Money Moons: Gone.
    Renting: Next on the Block?

    And while I think Drone Mining was bad, and Money Moons were bad. I liked that different areas of the map had wildly different sources of wealth. I think, whenever CCP finally gets around to truly rebalancing Sov, it would be a good idea to maybe pull back on the nerf to moons a bit, and add other alliance level income to areas that are moon poor.

    I don't think it's healthy for the game if everyone is pulling their income from the same source.

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  18. I read the whole post in Grath's evil voice .. but it was kinda missing the Header Image :D

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  19. I am seriously looking forward to seeing how the GSF's renter program fares. Because either it will fall apart in a fiery conflagration the likes of which EVE rarely sees, or we will all be enjoying watching the Goons force themselves to protect those they'd rather be shooting at and probably complaining about it vociferously. Either way, I expect plenty of entertainment, if nothing else of the Statler and Waldorf variety.

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  20. So good for Eve...bravo CCP for a job well done!
    Now we just need a leader(s) to unite the clans against the CFC and hit them asap to delay the renter program and maybe even kick them out of null...someday!

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  21. I do not see how the Goons will structurally change the mental attitudes of the rank and file. I would not be surprised at Goons shooting at renter blues anyway when the whim strikes them, telling the renter sorry, suck it, and you can always go back to hi sec pubbie scum. Or Goons scamming renters for additional rent, fees, protection, alliance entry fees, etc. I also would not be surprised if the Goons set it up so you are only blue in your rented space, fair game anywhere else in Goon space. As someone who has rented space in the past in null, I would not rent from the Goons, simply because I think the experience would be violent, frustrating, costly and lethal.

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  22. I look forward to your next post. The prospect of null sec turning into a simplified system of landlord and renter is disappointing. The concern is that we will see a reduction of medium scale fights, reducing conflicts to cloaky camping/renter ganking or large super capital blobs.

    I would much prefer to see a system where the larger entities have incentive to take the better null sec space, leaving smaller entities to take the less profitable space.

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  23. Future EVE - CFC to overtly attack highsec. Expanding the ice interdiction and Burn Jita type raids to as many systems as possible making it "unsafe for those not renting from us." All the while sending the tag market to new highs to pay their henchmen's security statuses and burning up the SRP.
    While I'm dreaming: CCP's next fix to only allow capsuleers to be in NPC corps to around 12 mil SP or one year from birth before they have to leave for a player ran corp or join the militia that their NPC corp is aligned with.
    Thinking of the Mittiani brings to mind a line by Larry of the Three Stooges in "You Nazty Spy", "...Gonna take him up on the roof and overthrow him." Actually kind of explains Goons.
    http://youtu.be/Xg_3qEf3ahU
    -AR

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  24. The first article is a GSF CEO update, the second is a news piece simply announcing the change with a C&P from Mynnna, and the third is a neutral evaluation of renter income in wake of the CFC rent announcement.

    The first two are internal audience pieces pubbed for the general populace, while the third is neutral. There is no "spearheading" going on.

    I realize it's easy to conflate Mittens with the rest of the editorial staff, but please stop with this goon conspiracy shit. It's insulting to my hard work as a neutral, non-aligned editor.

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  25. "All the while, CFC members are also doing their very best to convince themselves that they are definitely not Band of Brothers... mostly I think because they're saying they aren't expecting their renters to die gloriously for them as cannon fodder or even to form up to defend their homes because Goons -- Goons! -- Goons! -- will be doing it for them!"

    That got a big belly laugh from me.

    Those who cannot remember the past are doomed to repeat it...

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  26. There is a bit of a lack of coherence with the CFC overall message. First the changes to moon meant that they had to invade Fountain. Now the moons aren't good enough and they have to start a rental program!

    I can't help but think that the goal in Fountain was to destroy Test, period.

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  27. A good business diversifies its income. Fountain is resource rich. Why not take fountain as another ISK source? Why not cover your war chest's ass from multiple income sources? Take fountain in assumption the moo-goo market will stabilize across several materials, not just tech. Sounds like a smart reason to invade and at the same time enjoy the PvP.

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