Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Tobold on EVE PVP

Tobold, generally a really good gaming blogger with a good head on his shoulders has insulted me and most other EVE players.

Here's what he did: he prepared to jump into a 0.0 system on the edge of low sec, knowing it was likely camped, got ganked and podded and then concludes that EVE PVPers are bullies.

There are 2 basic errors he makes in his evaluation. Firstly, he seems to single out EVE players as bullies--he's tried a number of MMOs and IIRC, has played WOW since launch. As I recall his first 60s were Horde side too.

What I don't know if he ever took part in the open world PVP: where the Alliance would attack the Horde side quest hubs in the Barrens and Tarren Mill, more or less forcing a Horde response. On my original server of Kargath these would end up as 120 vs 40 fights, Horde loosing and not even being allowed to res and get full HP. You would res by your body and get killed with in seconds. In know DAOC exhibited the same behavior on Albion. And I saw the same thing on Silver Hand.

To characterize EVE players a bullies because of behavior you can find any PVP game is unfair.

The other problem I have is with the method of his testing. He wondered into a strategically important system for a much more powerful group than himself and then evaluates PVP from that. Now I don't have a huge amount of PVP experience, but that is not at all how PVP worked for me on a nightly basis while I few for the Minmatar militia or Ushra'Khan in 0.0.

Most PVP I ended up in was of a roaming nature--where neither fleet would engage if they didn't think they had a chance of winning. Death, and even ship loss, is consequential in EVE. Briefly, it hurts. So most PVP isn't spent in lopsided fights, but going out looking for something where you can win while getting the enemy to engage. To measure EVE by a single suicide run at a gate camp is a useless action.


Tobold said...

Of course a single run isn't statistically significant. But if a hundred new players in a hundred frigates entered a hundred different nulsec systems at a hundred different times, would the result be much different? Or would the large majority of them be shot down within minutes?

My point is not that ganking happens, because it sure does in every game, but that gatecamping is systematic in EVE. Because every frigate can be a spy or attack a miner, alliances controlling nulsec space are FORCED to shoot everyone who enters their space down, no questions asked.

Guthammer said...

Thanks for the visit. Need to pay more attention here.

And I think its less systematic than you think.

If you head into 0.0 at the alliances prime time you are far more likely to find a gate camp than off their prime time and just after server restart.

And you are correct, there are enough of gate camps that none of the veterans were surprised you ran into one. But that is mighty thin evidence to characterize EVE's PVP on. As I said in my last comment on your blog--feel free to not like EVE PVP--you can easily look at the PVP mechanics and go "bleh"--we both knew before the test you wouldn't like it. And it is a strong way to draw a conclusion.

Its the really poor choice of test to justify much broader conclusions that is more difficult.

Guthammer said...

I also should have said feel free to dislike EVE, you have given it quite the ride. While I wouldn't be happy that EVE lost a player, I couldn't criticize you for not trying. The better option is that you become a successful industrialist for a while and enjoy the game for a couple of months to a couple of years.

(It does beg the question on MMO reviews--how long a relationship do you assume when writing your review.)