How are the logi holding?

With CCP Seagull once again at the forefront, CCP have announced the next steps in the evolution of Eve Online. There has been a lot of chatter about the changes, despite the lack of details. In the debate, logistics ships and their part in the PvP meta have been a hot subject. I am here to deliver the logistics pilot’s perspective. Being a logi pilot is complicated, at least in comparison to the typical F1 DPS pilot. Logi are expected to act semi-independently, taking in multiple feeds of information, disregarding much of the FCs audible commands, and make decisions based on all of this. This is a role that requires a higher level of concentration and involvement. Logi pilots tend to be a slightly different breed, often hanging in logi comms to better coordinate and to avoid the inevitable chaos of main fleet comms where the height of conversation is often a fart or bong rip.

Are logi cancer?

There has been discussion amongst Eve notables that a logi pilots main function, remote reps during large fleet battles, is a primary cause of fights not happening. While logi is definitely a factor, it is only one of many. Many in the small gang PvP community also have a lot of hate for logi. Not as much as they hate ECM or warp core stabs, but plenty of small gang enthusiasts are on the nerf logi bandwagon. The decision to fight is not simply: + [my fleet’s damage projection] – [enemy fleet’s logi damage mitigation] = [decide to fight or not] This is what many in the “nerf logi” crowd would have you think. The actual decision is much more complicated than that:   + [my fleet’s damage projection]   – [enemy fleet’s logi damage mitigation]   +/- [fleet doctrine match-up]   +/- [amounts of EWAR]   +/- [chance of escalation]   +/- [high/low/null sec conditions]   +/- [amount of tactical bookmarks]   +/- [possibility of reinforcements]   +/- [chance of honorable third parties]   +/- [current fleet morale] I could go on, but you get my drift. Logi are a factor in fight decisions, but not the sole reason fights don’t happen. This doesn’t even get into the challenges logi pilots already face from ECM, damps, neuts, and other loving attention they receive routinely while simply trying to spread the love. Most logi pilots are okay with changes to their playstyle, as long they are not viewed as the cancer killing Eve (that is kitey missile ships, obv). 9aad6ac8d84348ae0c978ca0c9bdb1af

“FC, you’ve got one Moa out of range”

Of specific note to logi pilots is the incoming of falloff to remote repairs under the assumption that it will reduce range, something which is unclear at this point. At first glance, there is nothing game breaking about this. It seems to make sense and puts a bit more onus on the logi anchor to pilot more carefully. Like most of the proposed changes, the devil will be in the details. There is some concern that the current meta is empowering kitey ranged doctrines, while forcing logi to close range (again, assuming the range is effectively shortened) with the rest of the fleet and thereby closer to the enemy DPS. Brawling fleets are not the current meta, yet logi might be forced to yield one of their key defenses: staying out of range. With high alpha sniping in vogue, logi pilots might feel that the ‘nerf’ in their abilities does not come with a commensurate benefit.   Of course, falloff may not work out in play testing and we might see a switch to charge based modules, like ancillary reppers, that bring a higher level of micromanagement to the role. The idea of scripts being used to change the role of reppers has also been discussed. There are many ways to change the impact of logi in fleets, but the key to success is keeping the game fun for logi pilots while not nerfing them into uselessness. Watching your fleet get picked apart by Orthruses or Tengus is frustrating. Perhaps a tradeoff might be adding slight bonuses to EWAR like damps or tracking disruptors to give logi a chance to help counter the enemy directly, even if it slightly gimps their fitting. This would also give those logi pilots that long for killmails a way to see their name on a killboard.
“Many possibilities exist to give logi pilots more options on situational fits for their ships rather the simple “AB or MWD fit?” choice that exists today.”
Seeing exactly how the dev team decides to implement the falloff will be interesting. With module tiercide likely, perhaps we will see reppers that trade off longer range for lesser rep amounts. Or higher capacitor usage for longer rep range. Or lower capacitor use for lower rep amounts for skill point challenged pilots. Many possibilities exist to give logi pilots more options on situational fits for their ships rather the simple “AB or MWD fit?” choice that exists today. Getting outside of today’s thinking completely, a serious logi rework could entail making remote repairs ship specific. Imagine rep modules that only work on a certain ship class. For example a repper that only will work on battleships and BCs, but not on cruisers or below. Or capital sized reppers that will only work on sub-caps, but not capitals. There are lots of possibilities to reduce the wide utility of logi while at the same time giving logi pilots options and choices of specialization similar to what DPS and tackle pilots have. Extremely specific roles for logi. A Hugin pilot has one role in a fight: use their extraordinary webbing bonus to slow ships for the rest of their fleet to hit easily. Consider a targeted logi module that can increase resistance on a ship based on a selected script/crystal/charge, but is unfittable with any remote repair module on a ship. Or a module that increases the repair bonus of an internal repper on a targeted ship. These types of modules might work well on the T1 logi cruisers, which are usually flown only when pilots can’t fly T2 versions yet. Trading off the lower resist and tank profiles of the T1 ships for some unique abilities would definitely change up tactics, fleet composition, and overall doctrines. If CCP sticks with going with falloff as the only change, the logi pilots most affected by falloff will be the logi anchors, who will have to be even more on the ball with maintaining ranges and maximizing the ability to mitigate damage. Like mainline FCs, a complicated, busy role gets even more complicated. Assuming there is simply an optimal range for remote repair modules, with falloff similar to weapons systems, I don’t think it will do a lot to change the strength and impact of logi in fleet combat. Reducing the range of logi will change some tactics and doctrines, but won’t change the situation when enough non-counter-measured logi can make a fleet uncrackable. The dev team are sharp and realistic, so I doubt that is the only change to remote repair they are considering. However, if it turns out to be falloff only, the ‘nerf logi’ crowd will remain unhappy. 2015.

Evolution is inevitable

The natural evolution from fleet logi pilot to carrier pilot is common and the coming changes to this playstyle are of concern as well. With Phoebe, carrier pilots were put at a disadvantage not just with the range limits and fatigue, but that a key role, carrying ships, becoming almost completely overmatched by the jump freighters and their range and basic lack of fatigue. Add in the basic buff to supercapitals that operate in the local area, and the average carrier pilot has reason to feel glum. Several people that have seen the plans for capitals and supercapitals under NDA have told me that the plan looks ‘good’ and ‘exciting’. I am hopeful that my glorious Nidhoggur will once again roam the void looking for adventure. One aspect of the future plans that has been met with mixed opinions is the auto-regen of the Citadels. Many carrier pilots know the staggering boredom of repping structures occasionally turning into the excitement of repping under fire of the enemy to beat a timer or other deadline. The feeling of dropping into triage with the hopes of the fleet on your back to save them and/or the structure while you enter ‘likely suicide mode’ is special. Citadels will require large investments by alliances and will be the site of many battles. Not being able to be of direct use in saving the Citadels just plain feels wrong as a carrier pilot. I understand the idea behind the design, but that doesn’t stop the idea from tasting bittersweet to a logi pilot who often tells stories of last minute saves and burnt-out modules. Much will be revealed at Eve Vegas, so for now, most carrier pilots remain optimistic that their ships will once again be called upon by FCs to undock and do battle.

What do logi want?

To be honest, most logi pilots are content with the gameplay itself as is, you don’t hear them complaining much. Last year I did a survey of over 400 logi pilots. I gathered many ideas and then asked people to force rank the ideas, both good and bad. The outlier idea was logi on killmails, which some pilots want and others hate. The majority of wants surrounded the information that logi were presented. Seeing the ship type in broadcast and seeing capacitor level on the watchlist are examples of the kind of information that is desired. Again, logi pilots are a different breed. The highlight of a fight is not a killmail, but pull a ship deep into structure out from destruction and restoring it to a fight. Hearing “thanks logi, I thought I was a goner” in comms is what bring logi pilots back into fleet, night after night. They want to do their job better, and changes that let them do their job with better information are the kind of thing they want. Lastly, when the inevitable tiericide comes, all logi pilots hope the dev team will find a place for the revered names, S95a, Solace, and Regard.  
Tags: Dunk, logistics

About the author

Dunk Dinkle

Dunk Dinkle has played Eve since 2008. A life-long gamer, he's played MMORPGs since the first days of Ultima Online. In Eve, he's taken a path from high sec mission running to factional warfare to null sec. After the battle of Asakai, Dunk landed in Brave Newbies where he annoys FCs with an extensive soundboard.

  • chessur

    This entire article hits so far off the mark. The vast majority of examples proposed here are just flat out incorrect. I wouldn’t even know where to begin if I were to try and point out all of the fallacy’s . The lens this author uses to see eve with is pretty bitter / uninformed.

    • Messiah Complex


    • Niden

      I’d unironically be thrilled if you could find the time to just briefly share with us at least some points of what you mean.

    • Kinis Deren

      I think the community deserves more from you than simply resorting to the Fallacist’s Fallacy as a substitute for critical thinking.

    • If you want to write a rebuttal article I’m sure TMC would be very happy to pub it 😉

      • Niden

        Where is the delete button now? 😉

      • Smokey

        Really? Wow…

        • Where there’s winkies, there’s tongue-in-cheekies.

        • No. Not really.

  • JZ909

    I disagree with the author a bit. The decision to fight often DOES hinge on logi and DPS because there aren’t a lot of good counters to logi. Damps, nuets and ECM should be the correct counters, but they rarely work.

    Logi can do their work at 60 km beyond engagement range, which is often in the ballpark of 80km. At 140km, EWAR can’t even lock, much less shut down a logistics section. If EWAR does get in range, as they sometimes do in small gangs, it often requires every EWAR module on a recon to turn off a single logistics ship, and you have to do that with a ship that (generously) has half the resists and EHP of the logi while right on top of an enemy fleet. The exception is nuets, which have such a comicaly short range that logi simply shouldn’t get caught by nuet ships.

    Falloff will force logi to weigh the risk of getting in close to give good reps, and staying far enough to stay immune to disruption. I don’t think it will completely fix logi, and a balancing pass will have to be made with EWAR, particularly with ECM (which is just terrible right now), before logi has some semblance of balance, but it’s a step in the right direction.

    • J.H.

      Damps and ECM from a t1 cruiser go well past 80km. My blackbird can lock at 150k, has optimal at 90k and falloff at 160k with racial jams. The EAFs are not far either and with a 10mn AB, good luck killing a Kitsune or Keres.

      Celestis can do the same thing and you only need two of them to reduce 4 logis to 25k lock range or less.

      And we are talking here about t1 cruisers against t2 which requires a lot more training and it’s much harder to get into.

      • JZ909

        I stand corrected. With a sebo, you can get the required range with a Blackbird, but your jam strength is garbage and in falloff against logi with ECCM. In addition, you won’t really have a tank at all. That may be okish for a T1 ship, but Rooks and Falcons aren’t much better due to the lack of a range bonus.

        Celestis are pretty good as they the can afford to fit a tollerable armor tank (as T1 tanks go) and their EWAR consistently works, but T2 Gallente recons suffer the same range problems as the Caldari.

        I’m not saying EWAR should get massive boosts, but I think they should be looked at. I’m ok with EWAR being fairly strong against logi, because none of them have exceptional tanks and can be eliminated fairly quickly by DPS.

        Finally, I think ECCM should be rolled into sebos as a long loading time sensor strength script. I think it’s lame that logi EWAR defense is locked upon undock, so I don’t completely hate logi. 🙂

  • lowrads

    A couple of things stand out. First, there isn’t a whole lot of specialization in logi. It would be nice if there were scripts or charges to make them better at supporting either frigs or heavier hulls, but not both.

    Only half the logi lineup has related rigs. Reliance on cap rigs is lame. Frig logi can’t sig tank like their cruiser peers can, and don’t have the drone bays you’d expect.

    Logi tends to limit field positioning options. Consider the evolution of the Roman Legions from the tribal forces, to adoption of the Hoplite phalanx, to the manipular legion, and later the Marian reforms. All had an impact on the effectiveness of the legion on and off the field. You either blob your forces and be subject to potential AOE counters, or you spread them out and lose potency over time through attrition. The denizens of New Eden love paper rock scissors theorycrafting, and that doesn’t stop at the fitting screen, or at the level of gang composition, but should reasonably carry over to how forces are arrayed on the field.

    I don’t know the exact solution, but delete local and overview just in case. Realistically, it might be more interesting if link ships and logi were merged somehow. Capacitor transfer arrays are interesting in that they are limited to only boosting a ship-under-fire self-rep abilities when not used exclusively in cap chains. If spreading out forces a lot made focused fire obsolete, then that would be pretty interesting. Perhaps they could have fleet hangars and allow refitting, or perhaps they could have a completely new role in rapid squad mobility around a constellation, something important for fozzie sov.

    • Dirk MacGirk

      “I don’t know the exact solution, but delete local and overview just in case.”

      when in doubt…

  • Afk

    The nerf logi thing comes straight from goon hq who worked out their 40,000 line members are getting bored and now wish to reverse-farm some suckers with the bait of a few goon killmails once massed logi can no longer save them.

    Any cursory research into battle reports show that in every other region the galaxy fights are happening and with plenty of losses regardless of logi they bring. The fights only stop when someone brings their pointless superfluous blob.

  • Viince_Snetterton

    Yes, and I am sure that the dev’s controlled by the cartels will consider what nerfing the range of RR’s will do to the PvE players in the game. How many meta’s like RR’ing groups of Domi’s in wh’s are trashed? How about when Nestors are now garbage in Incursions?

    We all know that the PvE player is going to be totally screwed, again, by these nerfs

    • JZ909

      That’s a concern that I have too, but I wouldn’t be too worried. There is still a lot of time before this change happens, and I’m sure CCP will talk to the playerbase before they make the change. In fact, I’m pretty sure there are CCP devs reading this, and already starting to dream up solutions. I would say that giving logi falloff bonuses and keeping the current ranges as optimal would be the easiest way to do it.

  • I regard the prefix S95 with great solace #logi5life

    The wider realm of possibilities is due with the dogma rewrite, have to wait and see how crazy CCP go when the field opens up.

  • Ambo

    “The actual decision is much more complicated than that”

    Yes, if what you are interested in is winning.

    However, if you’re more interested in the fight itself (i.e. a lot of those small gang types you mention) then the logi becomes an overriding concern. A group that might have said ‘screw it, lets just have a go and see what we can kill’ won’t bother because logi means that they will not kill anything. Thus the fight does not happen.

    This is the central argument of those arguing that logi is cancer and it’s just brushed aside in your article.

    I don’t like the addition of falloff for logi as, depending on the details, I think it will either change nothing or reduce T2 logi to T3 logi-but-worse.
    My preferred solution would actually be to remove logi from the game as I can’t see how it can be made to work well in all situations. That’s obviously not going to happen though so I would at least like to have a limit on the amount of RR a ship can receive.

    (For the record, I have flown logi frequently in small/medium gangs and really enjoy the unique challenge it offers)

  • Saint Michael’s Soul

    Interesting stuff. I welcome CCP exploring ways of mixing up the modules, but would also be wary of any nerf as it will help the big groups more than the small ones. Small alliances can use the stalemate as a genuine defence method against larger blobs of more effective doctrines, I’m sure the small gang elitists hate this but we use the tools we have to defend our sov. Without effective logi and using stalemate as an accepatable tactic to deter would be attackers we’ll just see the big groups roll through anything they want (with even more ease).

  • Sayod

    “adding slight bonuses to EWAR like damps or tracking disruptors to give logi a chance to help counter the enemy directly” are you kidding me?

    You have trouble to lock all your frieds up and free up space whenever you can and you suppose that logi should do more micro-management, and add to that the potential of friendly fire, which would occur like 90% of all times because of plain information overload?
    This won’t help logi at all. I mean I don’t mind it beeing more stressful than damage dealing – that is what makes it interesting – but making it stressful is the task of the enemy, doing it to yourself is just unnecessary.
    And when you fight kiting gangs you are already busy trying to stay within range of your tacklers burning out to the enemy.

    If you want to cause an information overload, you can Damp us, ECM us, Neut us, Switch Targets in rapid sucession, you can Split Dps. You can lure our friends away from us, or ourselves closer to you, that you can web us and gun us down with larger guns than a cruiser sized vessel can tank. Try to break our cap chains, cause confusion and spread panic in the logi wing.
    Whatever you like.
    There are plenty of options to make the life of a logistics pilot hell.
    And I want you to do that.
    It makes the game fun and exciting. But don’t claim, that logi is overpowered. That is just stupid.

    Outsourcing the repairs means, that you can increase the repair by increasing your numbers, while you can’t increase your slots on a ship for a increased local repair. But it also means that you have to keep that vulnerable lock to be of any use. Yeah sure a blob of logi makes it nearly impossible to do anything against it, but a blob of damage dealers that just alphas you, is not really any better.

    I just don’t get why people get mad at things that actually introduce tactics, like ewar and logi and just demand simple, plain and boring dps wars. THAT is boring. And just benefits the group with the largest amount of people in it. Not logistics.

    Cruiser logistics are in a good place right now – they have tight fitting, basically every guardian fits fitting rigs only, and microwarpdrives require big trades for their utility.
    Differentiation in modules – would work I guess, longer range versus stronger repair trade-offs would be fine. Falloff – meh another thing to worry about but well it is still kind of ok. Capacitor on the watchlist – convenient, although I kind of like it how it is, it adds a layer of skill to it and need of communication.

    But remote resistance increase – do you know how overpowered THAT is… it takes away all the problems of overrepping and alpha, you just throw the reisists on and don’t have to worry much as the buffer on that ship increases aswell as the amount repaired.
    It is boring and op.

    And you have already repairs, that only work on spcific ship classes like remote shield transfers only work on caldari and minmatar and armor the other way.

    I don’t know too much about carriers, still too way too young to fly one – but the trade off, of triage (vulnerable, as assistance is disallowed but also powerful) seems to be in a good place.
    And frigate logi – dunno never really tried – they seem underwhelming.

    I just don’t get it, why all this “logi is so terrible for the game” posts come up.