CZ Minutes: Fozziesov

After years of agonising wait, the swansong of the much maligned Dominion sov is finally on the horizon. New Sovereignty is drastically different from the current system and response from the community has ranged from very positive to very salty. What do you think of the guidelines CCP set for the new system and do you think the new system will be delivering on them? The new mechanics involve prime-time settings, a module for contesting, Command Nodes and changed functions for structures among other things, how do you think this will work in practice? Does the new system open the door for the little guy or give more power to the man? Given that structure grinding will be a thing of the past, what would you have CCP do with capitals and supercaps? Georgik: Honestly though, I feel sorry for whoever bought Drone Regions… Bagehi: Are the mechanics really that dramatically different?  To be honest, the mechanics are very, very similar.  Form a fleet.  Go to system.  Sit on a grid until task is completed.  This way just uses less ammo.  That said, the change is in the details.  The system can only be taken using a ship that cannot receive remote reps.  This means the numbers game is far less important than it used to be.  An effective harrying force can prevent an attacker from taking a system.  That’s such a massive change from the current “they have 40 supers and 80 capitals, we can only get 20 supers and 60 capitals online, stand down” sov warfare.  Additionally, this should mean more fights.  Sov warfare could potentially be less drudgery and may end up with more PVP.  Small or large, it doesn’t matter.  I’m sure I’m not alone in saying the game is more fun when there’s fights to be had.  To paraphrase Grath: the proposed sov system will start with a small gang brawl which will setup some good fights two days later.  This is a very good thing. Could this open the door for little guys to take space?  Sure.  I can see some smaller groups taking space.  I can also see them getting stomped shortly afterwards.  I can see some of the more… sprawling… southern-ish… alliance(s) no longer being able to hold all the space they currently hold and either collapsing or allowing other entities to take some of their less valuable space.  Beyond that, it looks like the other alliances have already contracted their space down to what they could conceivably hold once the new sov rolls out.  That said, surprising things happened after the Dominion roll out, so who knows.  Predictions are difficult to make, even if we know exactly what the mechanics will be, and that’s still up in the air. What will CCP do with capitals and supercarriers?  I really can’t see them doing anything in the near future.  Carriers do a great job of killing battleship fleets.  Dreads do a great job of killing carriers.  Supercarriers do a great job of stopping dreads from killing carriers.  Titans do a great job of wholesale murdering capitals, supers, and each other.  All of which are still part of the escalation path.  That said, CCP will eventually need to address the reduced need for fighter bombers once structure bashes become a thing of the past.  However, that really isn’t the “fun” part of having a supercarrier, so there really isn’t going to be much of a clamor to replace something no one really liked to do with a new role.  Especially if it comes at the expense of the far more important role of giant, hard to kill, logistics platforms that is the strength of supercarriers.  As someone who dislikes super capitals and thinks they are extremely prone to being over-powered, I’m somewhat okay with their current role.  As the owner of a supercarrier, part of me would welcome a rebalancing pass that gives them a new and different role, though I really cannot fathom what that would be. Hendrick: I’m not big on the current warfare style to take Nullsec systems, so I can’t help but feel excited for this proposed series of mechanics. Manny said it best, when looking at this blog inside a vacuum it’s terrible but when you pull back that focus and take a look at the big picture you realize these changes are good and fall in line with what CCP said they were setting out to do. There are obviously areas that need to be tweaked but having spoken to CCP Fozzie about this on my YouTube series this past week, CCP are designing the system to have lots of “dials” that they can tweak to find a happy healthy medium. Niden: Ok, so keep in mind that I’m a lowsec “poor”, have never even fought over sov and consider 40 Ishtars and 20 support to be a big fleet. From my layman’s perspective two things jump out to me about New Sov. A new role for small gangs and skirmish FCs, and modularity. The way structures are RFd and given how Command Nodes will work I think opens up the door for fast-moving, guerilla style smaller fleets with FCs that know how to use the terrain rather than just bulldozing in with All The Things. It does not mechanically force apart big blobs, but it does so tactically. If the enemy is greater, that means you are faster. A determined attacker will start two dozen brush fires to hide where his main attack will be. I also see this opening up the door for mercenaries again, a play style that needs some love. Secondly, as both Fozzie, Mannie and others have pointed out, the new system is modular and flexible. For instance, it was very wise to put the tool for capture into a module rather than into a ship class because it is a lot easier to modify a module and have it adapt to reality than a ship. CCP are leveraging a tool, not a set system, and that to me is most important feature of this. Tarek: I find it an interesting change with many potential openings for, new doctrines, strategies and tactics. There are a few things which appear most striking to me in addition to aspects my colleagues here have pointed out already. Taking sov will potentially take much longer. The steps which need to be taken for a system to flip have become more and they have become less straightforward. The process can also be countered at each stage and reverted in ways that are different from now. Regional constellation geography will become much more important, and all of a sudden the ability of capital ships to jump through gates fits into the big picture. What I also see happening is a change in organisation. The vulnerability timer settings will be alliance wide and in combination with the importance of regional geography and the jump-fatigue mechanics that could lead to a much more factionalized nullsec where smaller alliances control and defend territory or where large alliances will have to establish local militia branches. Coalitions will still be a thing, actually I would think they become even more important if a larger entity like N3 or the CFC wants to retain control over similarly vast territories. The result could be quasi feudal empires comprised of little fiefdoms like the Holy Roman Empire or something which may become strikingly similar to the in-NPC Caldari State. Since the change was outlined so far in advance, the maneuvering and planning among significant player organisations will of course already be shifting into high gear. It sure is going to be interesting to watch and to participate in. Dunk Dinkle: I tend to agree with Bagehi that the new system is similar to the old, but pushes the fleet compositions from capitals and super-caps into more widely available sub-capital fleets.  Further changes are need to give super-caps a real role and bring battleships back into null sec as real participant. Dominion Sov tended to reward damage projection, where the new FozzieSov tends to reward coordination, a step in the right direction.  The task of taking a system from a well organized group will remain difficult, as it should, but does allow for poorly defended system to be taken by smaller groups in a reasonable way. In short, it’s a great step in the right direction.  For Brave/HERO, it’s a relief to see that strength in numbers will be competitive against strength in pure damage application.  As a large alliance, sending multiple fleets into the local constellation to strike or defend looks to be a great way to have fun and keep people out or boring grinds. I’m hopeful we see a little more on the occupancy side, than purely the defense bonuses.  Anything a pilot does on the industry interface, manufacturing, research, etc., should count toward the ‘occupancy’ side of the equation.  CCP wants more self-sufficiency in null sec, and should be encouraging mining, ratting, and industry across a constellation, rather than pushing each system to be independent. Personally, I’d love to see attackers have to do a little ‘occupancy’ work to take a system.  Maybe a minimum amount of mining or ratting. Or doing some number of anomalies in system.  It would be great to see a mining op being actively defended and a fight occurring in an asteroid belt.  Contrary to much of the kiting doctrines we see today in null sec, slugfests over a specific resource would bring new tactics and doctrines into the game. Not to mention, it would make heroes of the best miners a group could muster.  Did someone say Battle Rorqual?
Tags: cz minutes, Fozziesov, nullsec, sovereignty

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12 year EVE veteran, Snuffed Out scumbag, writer, graphic artist, producer, Editor-in-Chief of Crossing Zebras and the second most influential player in EVE, according to EVE Onion.