7 August 2014

Safer wormholes for all

For the longest time wormholes have been untouched by CCP. It is widely accepted that wormhole space is one of the few parts of EVE which do not require direct iteration on as it Just Works™. That said, it was nice to see CCP sending some love our way with a variety of changes to shake w-space up a little. Unfortunately the largely welcome changes listed in the dev blog were overshadowed by the horrific addition of mass-based spawn distance when jumping through a wormhole

The suggestion is to have ships with larger mass spawn further away from the wormhole they jumped through. The poorly formed reasoning behind this is that slowing down hole rolling will make it more risky for groups to isolate themselves from the rest of New Eden. While this is a laudable design goal there doesn't appear to have been any deep thought applied to whether the implementation actually achieves the goal (hint: it doesn't).

In any given wormhole system there are two sources for connections. The first is the static connection which residents have control over. The second is incoming wormholes which residents have no control over. At any given moment in EVE there are people rolling their static to close it so they can run PvE sites and there are also people rolling their static to catch people running PvE sites. CCP is directly targeting the former group. It is not possible, however, to only target one group with changes to the hole rolling mechanics. Players who seek to isolate themselves will only roll one or two holes in an evening. Active corps rolling for content roll many more holes than that. The latter group is affected more due to this change for the simple reason that they are rolling more.

When we have a fleet running we are looking for people to shoot or sites to run. We're not too fussy but will pick shooting people first any day. If our static connection has nobody there we roll it. With this change CCP are not making it riskier to roll wormholes, instead they are making it slower. As it is slower there will be less K162 holes generated in a given evening. As K162s are the only source of finding isolationist who have closed their static holes the net reality of this change is that isolating yourself becomes easier.

I find it hard to believe CCP don't realise. They have a 27 page (and counting) threadnaught which hopefully opens their eyes to how bad an idea this is. If CCP go ahead with this change it will be clear that, despite their statement that they want to make hole rolling riskier, what CCP truly want is to make life easier for corps who want to isolate themselves.


  1. Don't you think that if isolating your wormhole is easier and thus it is less risky to live there without a large group with PvP fleets rolling into you that the population density in WH space might go up? And if the population density goes up won't that also eventually re-balance the opportunity to find fights with less hole rolling and larger more healthy overall population?

    1. CCPs stated aim was to increase the risk of rolling wormholes. While this change may make a minor increase to the risk of that activity it greatly decreases the risk elsewhere. If a PvP corp who are rage rolling for someone to shoot at can currently collapse a hole in 3 minutes they make 20 K162s an hour. If this change means they take 6 minutes now there will be a 50% decrease in the risk posed by K162s in w-space (easy numbers chosen for simple maths).

      My position is isolating yourself should not be easy. In fact, it is impossibly just now to isolate yourself and should remain such. If someone thinks collapsing their static means they are safe then they deserve all Bob sends their way. The more likely source of hostile action is from incoming K162s. The creation of K162s is directly linked to the ease of collapsing the static wormhole in any given home system.

    2. I think it will not affect the large corporations at all. Instead of Caps, they will roll the holes with Battleships now. It may take more characters to do it but the speed shouldn't change much. Caps can also be webbed by some Frigate and warp off, then warp back to 0km.

      The real issue is not for large corps, its for smaller ones rolling for routes to k-space (or PvP). Not having 6 or more BS pilots available means rolling will be painfully slow...

    3. Nah, if you are just one guy rolling a hole you'll do it differently. Currently most people jump in, jump back then safe up for 5 minutes. For a 2 bn mass hole it takes one person 15 minutes. If this terrible change goes through people will jump in, safe up for a minute to wait out the short jump timer. They'll then warp back and jump home, safe up for a minute... Time taken this way is 14 minutes. Not really any more dangerous or slower than now for one person.

      For a group of 4 Orca pilots it'll go from 90 seconds to close a 2 bn ISK hole to over three minutes. This slows down larger corps rolling holes and reduces the number of holes which will be rolled. This in turn reduces the risk isolationists experience from K162s. This is the total opposite of CCP's stated design goal.