Friday, April 24, 2009

Supporting EVE Search

Anyone who plays EVE will know Chribba.

Chribba is the god-like person who has created and maintained some of EVE's best and most popular community sites including EVE Files and EVE Search.

In my role as alliance PRO I regularly use EVE Search to monitor forum happenings. Indeed EVE Search is usually the first website I hit immediately after turning my PC on. Using certain keywords I can quickly get an overview of the EVE-O forums and then decide if anything is worth responding to (usually not).

Anyway, Chribba has recently launched an appeal for funds to upgrade EVE Search.

I have already made a cash donation but thought this worthy of wider attention!

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

The Great War and other EVE politics

Following KenZoku's (BoB's) successful defence of the Querious system 49- in conjunction with -A- and various other alliances Goon participation started to drop.

Over the next week KenZoku and allies started winning back key moons in Querious, Delve with Executive Outcomes holding the front line in Period Basis pretty comfortably.

This prompted Goons spymaster Mittani to post the following 'morale' post on Goons forums:

Low-intensity strategic warfare is a bitch. The objectives tend to focus on assets which are critical yet incomprehensible to the average goon.

What do moons outside of stations have to do with the alliance? What does 'r64' even mean? Can I shoot dysprosium? Do we care about Querious? What about Period Basis? What's going on? Ooh, a wormhole!

This confusion is mostly the fault of the senior leadership. Darius, myself, Karttoon et al have been swamped with various real life issues - this is not an excuse, but an explanation. In the past week, Dabigredboat, Jaroslav, Brennah and many others have picked up the slack while your fearless leaders have been picking their noses. So, belatedly, here is an update to let you know precisely what the fuck is going on.

tl;dr: The war in Querious is a slow quagmire which we are presently losing, though every day of delay in Querious brings us closer to Sov4 in Delve. However, unless we turn our shit around in a serious way, all of our efforts will be for naught.


Two weeks ago we had a pair of serious welps. After our stronting fuckup decisively lost us 49-, we suffered another station-level welp in 3BK where offline RKZ towers had been left undestroyed. They were fueled, turned on, and an additional pile of Red.Overlord, -A- and other shitty pet towers blocked out the rest of the moons in that system.

Both of these losses can be blamed on organizational-level burnout, as they took place at a time where virtually every system and station in Delve and all of our R64s swapped to Sov3 at once, which meant that a host of jammer towers and an entire bridge network was being thrown up in a herculean, sleepless effort by our logistics team. Shit got missed.

Since that time, we've managed to mostly secure our R64s. R64s provide our alliance-level income. The first step when attacking an alliance (unless you have total military superiority) is to cut their R64s off. Initially we lost four of them before they swapped to Sov3, largely due to stront timing issues - we had a stupid setting for default stront, and most of our R64s had been thrown up in a rush, as we took 25+ R64s over the space of 4 days. After yet another massive push, GSOL put jammers and bridges at all of our R64s, significantly impacting RKZ's ability to attack them.

Then we killed Kenny's capital fleet.

Without their capital fleet, RKZ's allies have been reluctant to do serious siegework on RKZ's behalf; the conflict has shifted from a station contest in 49- to tussles over R64s, most recently in Q2-. Unfortunately for us, many goons do not understand the significance of R64s or why they should care about something that isn't a station, so our participation has been crap. That, or it's the fact that no one has been providing a high-level overview of the war, so there's a feeling of confusion and a lack of clarity; take your pick. Or blame taxes.

The big problem is that, while the pace of our losses has slowed dramatically since killing the RKZ capital fleet, we're still losing; We lost our R64s in Q2- even though that system was jammed. While we initially lost 49- due to a stronting fuckup (ie, our timer got whacked), we proceeded to lose an additional ~10 towers in timezones where usually we don't worry about tower losses. Because goons are not showing up, we're taking hits where we normally would have uncontested system control; our counterattacks are faltering because we can't summon massive goon turnout in our primetime to do a hellpurge.


Slow progress here. KIA, ZAF and Morsus Mihi have been chewing on EXE and RKZ soverignty. RKZ has a number of R64s in this region, almost all of them owned by DICE, which is presently the most functional corp in RKZ - as they have cash. All of them had been guarded by Sov3 and jammers, but as the map demonstrates, KIA/ZAF have spammed those systems and snapped the Sov3s on a number of them.

EXE at one point had a substantial bridge network in Period Basis that led to Delve but that has recently snapped with the loss of HIX4 (and, earlier, 1-2JP4 and 0-NTIS). That bridge (from the EXE stations) took them to the doorstep of TN25, a Frontal Impact station 1 jump from HIX4 where Morsus Mihi has been engaged in a spam war with FI.

In sum, while Period Basis is a vastly lower priority than R64s in Delve and stations in Querious, it's moving in a positive direction.


On 4/21, we get Sov4 in the W-4 constellation, where the bulk of our stations are. Over the next few weeks, the rest of Delve flips to Sov4, including the NOL constellation where we built two new outposts. Essentially all of Delve is Sov3, jammed, and connected by jump bridges. We have a working empire bridge network from NOL -> A2-V27 -> Empire.

This is paradise. However, it's going to be on fire if we don't turn things around in Querious.

Already we have lost an R64 in Delve itself, in A-E which is NPC sov and unjammable. RKZ has spammed 1-SMEB and EXE has spammed M0O as possible bridge/cynobeacon routes.


Our primary enemy in this fight is not RKZ, which has begun to have serious systemic issues, but -A-, ROL, and their associated pets. Their numbers and timezone coverage have allowed RKZ to stumble forward, zombielike, and staunch their losses:

As you can see, RKZ has stabilized at around 2660 members, where before they had been steadily losing. This is a natural consequence of them having retaken 2 stations from us.

-A- has been pingponged somewhat between the 49- front and 9-98, 46DP, and eastern Tenerifis where XIX has been making inroads. That front is being distracted by ED/IRC's invasion of RA, who had been helping XIX vs -A-. In general, however, -A- turnout has decreased markedly over the past few weeks. If we can get goon participation back to normal levels, we should be able to overpower them. However, until -A- is pried away from supporting RKZ, we're not going to see a RKZ failure cascade, which is our end goal.


* RETAKE OUR LOST R64S: A-E, Q2-, ZAU, 5V-, 49-, C-7

1. Show up on ops.
2. Show up on ops.
3. Show up on ops.
4. Show up on ops.
5. Show up on ops.
6. Join the GIA.
7. Why the fuck are you still in NPC Delve? No one should be in 319. 0-H is for formups.
8. Help GSOL with push butan duty.


Somewhat predictably this was leaked to KenZoku/BoB who then used Mittani's comments about the war in Querious being a 'quagmire' in their own internal propoganda to boost the morale of their own members and associated allies.

Unfortunately for them Mittani's call to arms seems to have provoked a response and Goons have gone back on the offensive. Rather than wait for BoB spies to do it Mittani has subsequently been posting updates on the war in Delve/Querious/Period Basis on CAOD (Corporation and Alliance Discussions) and I have to say they make a very interesting read. Obviously Mittani is making a political point - the war is after all going well for Goons at the moment - however they do give an insight into the conflict which is I have to admit more eloquent than my own!

You can view the relevant updates here:

While obviously biased to present the Goons and allies in the best light (and as such they tend to gloss over Goon & allied losses (the Pandemic Legion Titan loss being the most significant), they do provide an interesting overview of how the war is going.



Most EVE wars end not because an alliance has been defeated in space but because of internal drama, usually resulting from differing egos, goals and objectives within alliance. Defeat on the battlefield and enemy infiltrators can help bring such differences to the surface but to be exploited the flaws need to exist.

A good example of an alliance 'failcascading' is Puppetmasters who recently launched an invasion of Fountain - threatening Pandemic Legion and Sons of Tangra assets and 'pet' alliances.

When resistance toughened and Puppetmaster stopped making progress internal divisions leapt to the forefront in the alliance resulting in this insightful post by Arimathea Anthelas.

Drone Regions/Insmother:

Intrepid Crossing (IRC) and Ethereal Dawn (ED) have continued their war against Red Alliance despite being set upon by various Northern Coalition sub-alliances (Wildly Inappropriate/Majesta etc)

With Goonswarm and the main Northern Coalition alliances focused on finally finshing off the war vs BoB/KenZoku in Delve/Period Basis/Querious and with the other local powers (xXDeathXx & United Legion) focused on hitting Against All Authorities (-A-) and Atlas in Tenerifis in order to divide their forces and prevent them helping BoB/KenZoku, it seems that IRC and ED have avoided being steamrollered and continue to take offensive actions against Red Alliance and their other enemies.

However pressure must be mounting on IRC ED and this is surely indicated by desperate sounding posts like this one. I bet IRC/ED diplomats and propogandists winced when they read that one!

Despite this IRC/ED are continuing to put up a fight as this thread indicates.


As mentioned above the former Goon region of Tenerifis is now being fought over by Atlas and -A- on one side and United Legion, the xXDeathXx alliances and other assorted groups. Tenerifis was one of several regions which Goons abandoned when they moved wholescale to Delve in the aftermath of the BoB disbandment and was one of the regions siezed by -A- and other BoB/Kenzoku allies.

With -A- now being the main obstacle in the path of final victory over BoB/KenZoku it is clear that the Goon coalition is trying to distract their attention away from Querious by attacking assets at the opposite end of their empire.

As with the Drone Region/Insmother war, the war in Tenerifis seems to be generating significant cap battles. In this one an Atlas Mothership (supercap) is killed whilst an xXDeathXx Titan escapes by the skin of his teeth.


Danish capital killing specialists x13 (formerly BoB/KenZoku allies) have just joined the Krautbreak alliance that is based in Curse. Krautbreak is a conglomeration of renowned German cap-heavy corp Evoke and Outbreak (who were once regarded by many as the best PvP alliance in EVE). While x13 is not a huge corporation it is extremely capable and cap heavy. Its addition to Krautbreak substantially strengthens that alliances' capabilities. Are they going to focus on securing Curse and continue doing their own thing - or is the addition of x13 a sign that they are about to reengage in the 'Great War' and possibly take a hand in the fight in neighbouring Wicked Creek?

Wicked Creek

It seems that things are also starting to heat up in Wicked Creek where Aggression Alliance (who seem to be aligned with the KenZoku/-A- bloc) has launched an attack on Goon allies Scorched Earth and Tau Ceti Federation, with the backing of Atlas and -A-.

It seems fairly early days in this conflict but those who are interested can follow happenings in this Scrapheap thread.

That's about it from me for now!

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Ode to the joys of NRDS and space diplomacy

One of the big stories on Corporations and Alliance Discussions (CAOD) over the past week has been the disbandment of Foundati0n (FDN) alliance.

Regular readers of this blog will know that Foundati0n are an NRDS (Not Red Don't Shoot) alliance based in the Great Wildlands region and were involved in the recent Ethereal Dawn (ED) and Intrepid Crossing (IRC) assault on Red Alliance which subsequently came off the rails.

This was interesting for me as FDN were the only other entity outside Providence who operated NRDS. The multiple reasons given for FDN's disbandment can be summed up simply as 'internal drama'.

It seems not all FDN's corporations had the patience or discipline to maintain their NRDS policies. The systems required to police NRDS and handle the resulting 'diplomacy' can be complicated and time consuming. It requires real commitment, dedication and buy in from the whole alliance to maintain the necessary structures and it seems that some FDN corps simply didn't have this! Hence the internal drama!

Anyway, shortly after this 'drama' my alliance noticed a lot of Foundati0n pilots in relocating to Assah - a system in Derelik - on CVA's Providence border...

As Foundati0n had blue standings to CVA at that stage I decided (as any good NRDS diplomat would) to touch base with FDN diplomat and find out what the state of play was.

Here is an excerpt from the conversation:

XXX > Well for the moment we're definately NRDS, we aren't shooting you providence guys. We'll have to look for the new alliance though. Alot of people are bored of what we where doing in GW =)
Hardin > Okay I can understand that
Hardin > But as we have you blue we would hope that at least for decency sake that you inform us if you do decide to change your view on CVA and Provi
XXX > Yes. We definately would =)
XXX > We're always trying to be the Gentlemanly type ==


All fairly amicable and straightforward! However when I wake up I find that one of the FDN corps has started attacking people in Providence. Another CVA diplomat has the following conversation with another FDN representative:

XXX > o/
Amandi Casimi > What the HECK is going on again?
XXX > we are nbsi and shooting neutrals
Amandi Casimi > That official?
XXX > yes
XXX > have you read the FDN announcement in CAOD?
Amandi Casimi > Alright... consider yourselves KOS then.


I immediately sent a mail to the FDN diplomat whom I had originally contacted and got this mail in response:

2009.04.12 08:39
I need to shout at some people clearly. There's not been any official standings change to my knowledge.

Will get back to you with something definate on that and apologies if i was the one to mis-interpret the situation =)


I sent the following response:

Well I am afraid we will have to keep you at KOS until we get some kind of 'official' explanation!




A few more incidents followed leading to another CVA diplo talking to several FDN pilots. This led to this 'alliance' mail being sent to FDN members:

2009.04.12 12:36
I had a discussion with Equinox Daedalus of CVA today regarding standings.

Due to several recent incidents, we are giving conflicting signals to CVA. They have asked us to avoid their space until we sort our new alliance and our new standings. I think this request is reasonable as we will are still in the old alliance and have not changed our standings to anyone outside GW.

We'll be NRDS in Providence until our glorious leader says otherwise (hopefully today lol).
Actually - its best to just not go to Providence until we are properly sorted, and in a new alliance.
Once that happens, safety off... fire at will



Shortly after the pilot who sent the mail returned to CVA space and was ganked by a CVA gang. Leading to the following convo:

[13:30:44] XXX > why hello there
[13:30:55] Keown > Hey. Equi is afk, but just noticed your comment in local.
[13:31:09] XXX > yes we had come to an arrangement with equi
[13:31:18] Keown > I was just curious why you came to providence 1 hour after your alliance mail about staying out of Providence?
[13:31:47] XXX> the mail said: DON'T GO TO CVA SPACE AND SHOOT PEOPLE
[13:31:51] XXX > we were not shooting anyone
[13:31:54] XXX > just passing through
[13:32:14] XXX > here is another quote from the mail
[13:32:23] XXX > We'll be NRDS in Providence until our glorious leader says otherwise
[13:32:29] XXX > oh andplease stop shooting hans
[13:33:13] Keown > Let me read your convo with equi one more time, but from what I remember you were told you where set KOS until your leader decided what to do. And for that reason where adviced to stay out of providence.
[13:33:25] XXX > I will send you the alliance mail
[13:33:29] Keown > i got it
[13:33:41] Keown > im a diplo and got access to the info.
[13:33:48] XXX > the arrangement was a temporary nrds in providence
[13:34:00] XXX > there was nothing said about 'don't go through providence'
[13:34:28] XXX > well I did say its best 'not to go' but didn't forbid it.
[13:34:52] Keown > Ok. let me re-read the post.
[13:35:02] XXX > CVA is currently blue to us and we shot no blues in our earlier engagements
[13:36:03] Keown > Equinox Daedalus > well can i ask that you avoid prov until you decide.
[13:36:11] Keown > thats from your convo
[13:36:34] XXX > ok we'll leave it at that then


He then agreed to stay out of CVA space until FDN leadership decided what they were going to do. Unfortunately this did not last and now the ex-FDN corps (they left to form a new alliance) are KOS in CVA space.

The main reason I have recreated this entire 'drama' is that it is actually a good example of the kind of diplomacy that is required if you are going to operate NRDS successfully.

Now some would say why do it? It is after all a rod for our own backs and right old pain in the arse to manage...

From my perspective there are two main reasons:

1) CVA is a roleplay alliance. We see Providence and lo-sec Domain and Derelik as extensions of the Amarr Empire and 'piracy' is outlawed in the Amarrian Empire. We view agressions against CVA, its Holders and law-abiding neutrals in our area of influence as 'piracy' and such we will 'police' the area in the same way that Concord polices Empire space (albeit with a slightly slower response time)

2) From a pragamtaic standpoint NRDS has proved extremely rewarding. Providence is the most populated and highly developed 0.0 region in EVE. While the natural resources of the region are poor our markets are strong - providing lots of opportunity for ISK generation. In addition, those neutrals who do move to the area and start exploiting its resources and markets develop their own stake in the region and its wellbeing - providing useful intel and assistance in the event of significant raids and invasions.

NRDS (and our non-expansionist stance) does create the same tensions in CVA which eventually pulled FDN apart. However leadership in the CVA actively works against such pressures by only recruiting corporations that are 'down with the programme', that understand our roleplay history and are already aligned with our 'vision and values'.

Unlike many we do not recruit corps simply because they can bring X number of Capitals to the alliance or because they have impressive killboard efficiencies. Even more importantly we only recruit Corporations that have already lived in and helped defend the region for a significant period (over a year in some cases).

This waiting period mean that applicant corps have an understanding of what NRDS is about and will have demonstrated their activity, ability and, more importantly, the patience and maturity of their leaders and members.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

OMG - They resurrected Kenny

Just a quick update on the 'Great War' following on from my previous post here.

I am keeping it brief as nothing particularly exciting has happened. KenZoku (aided and abetted by Against all Authorities and various other alliances) have continued to make progress in 49-U in Querious, with Goonswarm and allies apparently suffering a huge post celebratory hangover which seems to have dented activity/participation. Some are also blaming the introduction of wormholes which have disproportionately appealed to Goon members who apparently like 'shiney' things! Not quite sure I believe that one to be honest!

The 49-U system is expected to switch to -A-/KenZoku control imminently (it is often hard to predict when sovereignty changes as EVE's POS warfare mechanic is so complicated) and there have been reports that POSes in other Querious systems owned by Razor (a member of the Goon friendly Northern Coalition) have also been hit by -A-/KenZoku forces.

In comparision to the rapids changes of recent months this all seems like pretty small fish but it will nevertheless be encouraging news for enemies of 'The Swarm' and its allies!

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

EVE Online Political Update - Drone Regions

Well I kind of feel bad as I haven't posted in almost a week and events move quickly in the EVE Universe... I blame real life!

Anyway here is a cheap and cheerful update on recent events in the Drone Regions.

As mentioned here Intrepid Crossing (IRC), Ethereal Dawn (ED) and Foundati0n had decided to take a pot shot at the Goons long term ally - Red Alliance (RA).

Unfortunately, things started to go wrong for them pretty quickly as Goon sleeper spy proceeded to rob IRC blind!

This was then followed by several of neighbours in the drone region apparently weighing in on the Red Alliance side. Goons then opened negotiations with IRC (some say IRC opened negotiations with Goons) and apparently came to some kind of peace deal which ED was left out of.

According to Farham on the Scrapheap forums:

It seems IRC was in such a hurry to agree to whatever terms the GOONs set forth they didn't think some of them through. They agreed not to attack RA or its pets unless they were in IRC space. RA knowing this are hitting ED. ED is apparently not amused with their long time allies.

Interesting stuff!

This leaked 'internal memo' confirms that IRC were in talks with Goons and at least temporarily stopped 'offensive' fighting for fear of being overwhelmed by enemies.

However, the war has continued with Red Alliance making POS assaults in Ethereal Dawn space (so far unsuccessfully) which have in turn been reciprocated by IRC/ED POS assaults on Insmother (Red Alliance territory).

TBH I am not quite sure on Foundati0n's committment/involvement with all of this as they have (probably wisely) kept a low public profile and don't seem too involved on the killboards!

Will keep you all updated!