The Eve Community is abuzz with talk of incoming PVE changes. Terms like ‘drone compounds’, ‘Meta-0 Drops’ and other esoteric things have never been thrown about with such frequency or ferocity. If you are like me, you’re possibly thinking ‘Man, those silly carebears and their silly ways’ or, worse, ‘TL;DR – doesn’t concern me’. However, if you think these things have no impact on your PVPing, you’re dead wrong.
Lots of people are writing and commenting on what the upcoming changes consist of, so I will refrain from going in-depth here. Instead, a quick overview:
- NPC Drones will no longer drop mineral-rich compounds, but instead will carry bounties like all the other NPC rats
- Manufacturable (Meta-0) modules will no longer drop from NPC rats, decreasing the amount of minerals reprocessed mission loot will provide
- CCP is going on a sustained rampage against botters and RMTers, resulting in a decrease in botting-related activities (i.e. ISK production)
- Incursion Vanguard Sites will now produce roughly 10% less ISK, and take more time to run due to the fact that you must now clear every NPC in each wave (as opposed to trigger spawns)
Any one of these changes would be a relatively small change in the wider landscape of New Eden, unlikely to make PVPers take notice. However, coming together (or within a short amount of time with each other) as a package means the landscape of the game will be forever changed – for everyone. How, you ask?
Mining is becoming an actual profitable activity again due to the mineral changes. This means more people out in Hulks and Retrievers in every section of space. “But Marc, most of those miners are just botters!” you say. Perhaps before. No longer, thanks to the diligent work of CCP Sreegs and the Security team at CCP. Bots are getting hammered in sustained numbers for the first time (I can recall, anyways) in Eve Online, making it rather foolhardy for the non-human element to persist.
Also thanks to the CCP Security team, we should see a decrease in the amount of blue-balling rat bots out in nullsec. As it stands, whole swaths of nullsec are farmed by programmed ships little better than the things they shoot at. These ships dock up, according to their programming, whenever a potentially hostile individual enters their local (information which is handily available via the Local Chat box).
Those of you able to add two and two are probably getting the point here. But let’s break it down anyways: More humans actually playing – humans which are prone to that little foible of ours called ‘human error’. More mining vessels out and about in empire and nullsec, also piloted by a higher percentage of humans. In short: more soft targets for the enterprising PVPer to go after.
Whether you prefer ganks or gud fites, you should be pretty happy right now. Gankers will obviously be pleased with more targets not capable of blue balling consistently. And patrons of the fine art of ‘Gud Fiting’ will be able to poke sticks at this new, rounder and softer underbelly of Eve to provoke the claws to come out, as defense fleets will no doubt be formed to combat your menacing presence.
There is, however, a downside. As with all things in real life, all things in Eve generally aren’t pure rainbows and unicorns and glitter. With the mineral market in an uproar, ship prices in particular are skyrocketing. Drakes are going for well over 70 mil (depending on the time of day you shop). Armageddons, that bastion of cheapness in the Battleship class, are going for nearly 100 mil (again, depending on the current phase of the moon, the caffeine content of the .01 iskers in Jita, and whether or not you stepped on a bug outside yesterday).
Even small ships like the Rupture are reportedly going for over 10 million ISK, making it somewhat more difficult for the new PVPer to break into an already torturous career path in Eve Online. For the small ship enthusiast, or those who disdain pilots who rely on the shiniest ships possible to win the day, this isn’t really a ‘con’. Rising prices will encourage PVPers (experienced and new alike) to take it easy with the big flashy things.
This is what makes Eve Online great. Just a few tweaks and suddenly the economy has gone mad. Intrepid capitalists are making ISK hand over fist. Small ship partisans may see their preferred form of Space Combat become the ‘in-thing’, even more so than after the recent Assault Frigate buffs. Oh, and miners? Your day has finally come. Enjoy it!