Time to take security off the NPC market

Note: Not all criminals are alike; this is not an all-criminals-are-lame blog, it’s a consequences-and-more-PvP-for-everyone blog.

Criminality in EVE is a strange thing. Criminals (I’ll not pretty them up by calling them pirates) are pilots who have engaged in hostilities against another pilot who is not a criminal. And, they have done so repeatedly until their security status has reached a -5.0. And, they have not bothered to stop in-between and kill a few pirate faction NPCs.

“Wait,” you say, “so, a miscreant can perform any number of criminal acts as long as he or she stops for a while to shoot NPC pirates?” Yep. The one down-side to shooting other pilots in low-security space can be counteracted by an activity that will simultaneously make money for the criminal. Doesn’t that seem backward?

The whole concept of EVE is that it is a sandbox. In the sandbox actions have reactions; choices have consequences. So, what are the consequences faced by criminals in EVE? The sole consequence is a negative security status — easily mitigated by an activity that has other benefits (making money). If you see a pilot with a negative security status he is probably going to try to blow you up and steal what you’ve got — but the pilot with a positive security status is just as likely to try to blow you up and, again, steal what you’ve got because he’s just a criminal who worked off his negative security status. That doesn’t seem very sandboxy.

Exploratory Thought 4: Consequences even for criminals; strange thoughts indeed.

Now, some criminals wear their negative security status as a badge of honor; they parade around with a negative ten security status (the lowest possible value, also the name of an alliance).  You can find them in low-security systems like Amamake, Rancer, Aeschee and Ostingele. Why don’t more criminals do this?

Low security status makes it difficult to travel; that makes it difficult to purchase new ships and modules when luck turns bad. Enter the alt — a second playable character who can travel freely, go shopping, and run missions in high-security space (don’t tell me you don’t run high-security missions with your alts, I read your blogs).

Exploratory Thought 5: There is nothing wrong with alts, but why encourage their use?

I propose that we remove the need for alts. Let pilots of any security status enter any area of space without being immediately attacked by faction navies; move security from the purview of non-player entities and place it squarely on our shoulders. The responsibility for market goods has been gradually moved from NPC market orders to player manufacturers; it’s time for security to go the same way. Let us camp high-security space entry points like they camp low-security space entry points — turn about is fair play.

Note that I’m not suggesting we remove CONCORD; punishment still has a place, just remove the travel restrictions.

This move would allow criminals the same amount of security in our space as we have in theirs (I actually live in low-security space most of the time, I’m using the figurative ‘our’). It eliminates one of the motivations for keeping security status high and for using an alt (not that there aren’t others).

As part of the consequence, though, make it much more difficult to regain security status. Or, make it necessary to make some form of restitution (read pay fines to CONCORD for past violations) in order to begin regaining security status.

So the new world view looks a little like this: criminals can freely enter high-security space; they can be freely engaged by players there (and subsequently return fire), but are still not free to begin an engagement (or CONCORD rears its ugly, indestructible head). Criminals are not chased by faction navy spawns or fired upon by gate guns (until they perform a criminal action, as usual). It’s the exact reverse of low-security space — the criminals are afraid of being engaged and the upstanding citizens are free to engage them at leisure.

Exploratory Thoughts 6: More PvP is always a good thing.

What do we get from this? Several benefits outlined already, but I’ll summarize: more PvP for everyone, fewer losses to faction navy spawns, less need for an alt (for the criminals), and most importantly these changes would give security status a real meaning.

Final note: I’m also for increasing the size of low-security space, making high-security space less secure in general (therefore making the play pool for the criminals much bigger and less concentrated) with roving faction navies to clear out gate camps made up of criminals with an active global criminal countdown, and generally mixing things up.

~ by paritybit on 2010/04/28.

8 Responses to “Time to take security off the NPC market”

  1. I like it.In fact I bloody LOVE it. If there needs to be more of a “Penalty” for the Crimnals then have Bounties added by Concord to them. Let them venture into high Sec if they want to if they can be engaged without Concord intervention then SWEET! More PVP, especially if the Voluntary variety is good for everyone.

    • I was hoping somebody would chime in with some criticisms so I could refine the idea; but positive feedback is just as good I suppose. 😉

  2. I love the idea of being able to take my -10 character into highsec, gain aggro then subsequently chew through their ships without consequence. That said, this will only raise the prices of the vessels you carebears use because people like myself, and many other players will end up destroying more Hulks then every Hulkageddon has claimed put together.
    That’s just the view of a ‘miscreant’ who likes to call herself a pirate on both accounts. Oh, yes, I do have a mission alt, my blog is an IC/OOC account of her exploits and my real life insanity.

    • I think you’ve missed the point.

      I am, first off, not a carebear — nor do I think the term is appropriately used 90% of the time (much like the term pirate).

      I’ve also not suggested a change in the way CONCORD works; attacks on pilots who have not aggressed you would still trigger a global criminal countdown and CONCORD. I just expect there would be more people like me waiting for you when you got to high sec.

  3. I love mostly in zero, but honestly I can’t find much wrong to be critical about in this idea. Anything that makes the Eve universe more open and less “clumpy” is good in my opinion. The action in Eve seems to mostly revolve around certain systems, gates and stations and I’d like to see that change. PI holds the promise of moving trading hubs away from the clumps of Jita and others. This idea might move empire pvp out of the low-sec systems and more into every system.

    I also like the idea of turning the tables and having hi-sec be as dangerous to them as low-sec is to the rest of us. Good stuff.

  4. nice idea, but there are a few things i picked up on, first off, id just like to point out that pirates arent safe in low sec, so the analogy isn’t quite there, but that’s just me nitpicking, it would be nice to go into highsec, and i’m sure i could live with being a target there.

    People will still have alts to do missions, after all, running missions while at war is bad practice even without any WT in local, imagine doing it when absolutely anyone in local could pop in and have a go ^^

    Suicide ganking would also lose pretty much all of its risks, as you can simply rinse and repeat the process as much as you like, since as soon as your gcc is out you can still stay in highsec and gank someone else

    still, nice idea and i’m sure there’s ways to deal with issues like this

  5. […] they are violent pilots with an e-conscience. The only lure necessary for these fish is a clear and visible signal that a pilot is a criminal and the freedom to act on that information. A reward from CONCORD couldn’t hurt either. A […]

  6. […] Make criminality a choice such that engaging in sustained criminal activities marks the pilot. Leave no way to ditch the mark until the pilot has atoned for all wrong-doings (willingly or unwillingly). Fix and add to the bounty system. Take actions to make criminality less of a burden by reducing global criminal countdown times and allowing free travel in high-security space. […]

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