April 6, 2015

Future of Big Battles in Null

When FozzieSov was first announced, there were complaints that there would be no more B-R fights.  The immediate counter was "so how fun is to be at max TiDi for hours and hours on end?"  I thought surely the real response of "yes, there will be big battles" would come around but apparently not.  I was particularly frustrated when one of my favorite podcasts went on and on recently, but apparently none of them had actually read the devblog (or at least could articulate it).  We even had one guest reinforce the stereotype that "I don't need to read, my superiors in the alliance will tell me I need to know" before he went on to spout stuff that was just plain wrong.  So I'll put our my statement, as a non-null resident no less, that we will have huge battles to rival B-R - just not the TiDi fests of Dominion Sov.


If you still haven't read about the new sov, please do so before you go commenting on blogs and podcasts and such.  It's not that hard, let me help:
* Politics by Other Means: Sovereignty Part Two (Fozzie Sov's introduction)
* Entosis Links and Ship Balance: original thread on F&I - read the first post and then skip to
* Entosis Links and Ship Balance Part Two

And now, on with the show

The Battle of D-Day

Let's start with a comparison to military history: the Battle of D-Day.  Here's a quote from the History.com article:
During World War II (1939-1945), the Battle of Normandy, which lasted from June 1944 to August 1944, resulted in the Allied liberation of Western Europe from Nazi Germany’s control. Codenamed Operation Overlord, the battle began on June 6, 1944, also known as D-Day, when some 156,000 American, British and Canadian forces landed on five beaches along a 50-mile stretch of the heavily fortified coast of France’s Normandy region.
Hmm, notice how this isn't referred to the Battle of Juno Beach, the Battle of Sword Beach, the Battle for Cherbourg, etc etc.  We don't talk about how many men died on each of those beaches as separate events and compare them against the battles that have gone before on that.  We don't treat how many men came in on gliders and by parachutes into the enemy backfield as separate skirmishes.  That's because those were just smaller locations in support of a larger mission objection: flipping Sov of the Normandy Constellation from the Germans [NAZI] to the Western Alliance [ALLY].

Oops, did I just say Sov? Well, let's take this back to New Eden then. If D-Day was under FozzieSov, what might we see?

The Battle of the Normandy Constellation

Operation Overload starts with five large fleets surging into the Normandy Constellation.  Thanks to intel leaks, the defenders set up heavy gate camps but were unable to stop interceptors and CovOps ships from getting past and using cynos to allow larger forces to land.  The defenders break off of gate camps to chase down intruders using Entosis Links to reinforce sovereignty structures, POSes and other structures.  As the initial defenses are breached and some of the attacks succeed, command nodes start to spawn across the constellation.  The battle rages back and forth for days, with each day running into the hundreds of billions of ISK destroyed.

War-reporters stream from their covops as battles run around command nodes, eagerly watched to learn what tactics and fits both sides are using.  Third-party groups swing into the constellations hoping to kite off the edges of the command nodes, or catch juicy Entosis-laden ships.  An NPSI streamer laughs as someone in his fleet takes a shot at a Drifter Battleship that apparently is observing one such battle, leading to a whelp of the entire NPSI fleet.  Mercenaries are pulled in on both sides with instructions to reinforce POSes and hunt down Entosis-ships.

Eventually the defending forces are pushed back and control of structures begins to swing to the attackers.  The Command Nodes for the headquarters station are triggered and the attacker starts to take them.  At risk of losing the final nodes, the defenders commit their capital and super-capital assets.  Cynos in the final command nodes on both sides bring in dreads and carriers to secure the grids, both sides not wanting to be the first to commit supers and titans on one command node lest their opponent overwhelm the other four.

On the final day the last five command nodes see waves of attack, reinforce, commit reserves until capital and super-capital assets are deployed in multiple systems and multiple nodes.  TiDi ramps up as the doomsdays start to rain down, hitting 10% dilation for a full two hours in three of the systems before the final command node is secured.  The defender manages to extract their forces from four of the five command nodes as they realized they are overmatched, but enemy bubbles and hictors keep it from going cleanly.

In the aftermath the analysis and reporting goes into overdrive.  Billed as the "largest player battle in video game history" the link gets passed around about how thousands of Eve players battled back and forth for over a week, with trillions of ISK lost and the inevitable conversions to USD and Euros.  A popular eve-news side features a ten-part series of interviews with skirmish commanders from the most nail-biting of the command node fights, the final article of which is picked up by a mainstream gaming media site.

Player videos and commentary swamp /r/Eve, along with recriminations over spies and betrayals.  Hero-Entosis pilots regale friends on how they managed to keep their link up for a few moments more even as enemy battleships took the grid, just enough time for a corpie to land and light off a cyno that brought the pivotal caps on field. As the defenders lick their wounds, they harass the new sov-holders with Entosis HAC gangs, but only half-heartedly as they let people know that they didn't really want that constellation anyway.

Future Fights

Saying that they won't match the old fights is like saying that D-Day wasn't that big because each individual beach and para-drop and airstrike involved was small.  You just have to shift your definition of what a "battle" in Eve means to something that more approaches reality.  It's a new kind of battle that, as an outsider to null, actually sounds interesting compared to the 24-hour long 10% TiDi battle that frankly sounds boring.  The idea of having these raging battles across a constellation, now that's something I could get into.

But we'll still have TiDi, you know, if you were missing that.


  1. That is one of the most beautifully hopeful views of virtuawar I have ever read... =]

    I do so hope it goes something like that... but it's EVE, and it's EVE players... so we'll see... =\

    1. Hopeful, maybe even naive, and I'm not even in Brave!

      Thanks, Turamarth!

  2. Well I think you are right in the assumption that battles will be redefined. So we will still have a huge battle, it will just be fought out among a number of smaller capture skirmishes.

    Or people use capitals to defend their system, the attackers drops caps, and both sides escalate and move in every super, dread and titan they can batphone.

    -didn't want that constellation anyway :)