November 4, 2014

BB60: What's Op Success for CCP?

BB60: With Phoebe about to land, CSM Minutes now out, and more of CCP Seagull's vision from Eve Vegas it appears CCP has a bold roadmap, is making big changes, and is willing to take a hit in the short term to see it through. What do you see as the measurable signs that will tell us that they've succeeded? What outcome will we see as players? Is it concurrent player count or something else?

Since I suggested the Blog Banter question, you would have thought I would have a post ready to go on Monday.  Well, not really, more like some ideas.  But to make me sound more clever than I really am: Bait Blog Banter, Best Blog Banter.

I've seen some responses agreeing that concurrent player count as the banter suggested. I would argue that the concurrent player count getting back to the level of say 2011 may not be the right goal and number of subscriptions isn't something we can observe.

Why not Concurrent Players?

If overnight we banned all bots then concurrent player count would drop.  Would that mean that the changes to Eve were a failure?  If supers were no longer a coffin for the mains of long-time players, would that make Eve weaker?  I think that the concurrent player count is a decent measure, and thanks to Eve-Offline it is a readily available metric.  But when you log in is that what you're looking for?  It's a proxy for activity.

Looking for activity.

What we should look for is wide spread activity.  Instead of seeing wide swaths of null with practically no pilots and no ship deaths (random example), then one bright spot once a month where a big fleet fight happened, we see content happening pretty much every night.  Now I picked that example of Wicked Creek largely because I hadn't ever heard of it, but I see there are more kills in any one of two dozen of the systems in my FW area than in that entire region.

Now that's just a measure of PVP activity. Similarly we should look for PVE activity. We can effectively see missioning and ratting by NPC kills on dotlan. We can see manufacturing through the new industrial indices. Unfortunately we can't see measures of mining or invention directly, but since those lead into manufacturing I think we can consider that a good proxy.  Exploration I admit we can't see at all.

Now this is not to say that I think the goal is that all systems or even all regions should have a uniform spread of PVP and PVE. Just to make it more active and more widespread. Perhaps we can make an Eve activity version of the Gini coefficient with the goal that we want to see a lower coefficient between constellations.

I was to see systems changing sovereignty in null, systems changing FW control in FW.  As I've posted before, I want to see the map changing itself.

I think this kind of activity is the best long term health sign for Eve.  Huge fights may get a nice PR bump, but I wouldn't want to measure Eve by their occurance.  New players aren't going to be suddenly able to join in a capital / supercapital F1-fest in TiDi - thank goodness.  What they'll experience if they're going to be hooked on Eve is the deep richness of all the kinds of activity that the game has to offer.

p.s. Last night Ashterothi pointed our in the middle of an op that on the star map there were cynos up and down every part of null (and some in low).  A night of exploding pseudo-stars?  Let's hope they're followed by more exploding ships!

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