NidenShareTweetIn this special edition of Lowlife, Julianus Soter, executor, leader and FC of Villore Accords [GMVA], lends his overarching perspective on a slightly overlooked feature of Kronos and the implications it heralds.
The quantum surge of lowsec wormhole spawn rates (20% flat chance per system for lowsec-to-lowsec routes, and 9% for lowsec-to-nullsec routes) will change the state of play for low-security space and potentially, for nullsec as well. To explain, a history lesson is in order.
When the Huns crossed the River Volga and began their centuries-long march across the European Plains, they seized towns, farms, and everything else before them. Rolling over tribes, nations, and Imperial Provinces, this seemingly unstoppable wave snaked its way through the wealthiest and richest areas of both the West and East Roman Empires, ravaging the frontier.
You might ask, what does a bunch of bearded mass-murders have to do with Eve Online, wormholes, and the Kronos release coming in two weeks? History teaches us that the primary source of Hunnic victory was their unique use of massed composite-bow equipped cavalry – read more about this on Wikipedia if you wish, it’s fascinating stuff! – and with this kind of mobility they could inflict casualties at will. Dodging heavy defenses and fortresses, the Huns and their allies pillaged what they wished and left before a concerted defense could be mounted. And finally, with the war all but won, they’d siege the cities and finish the job.
Wormholes in Eve Online have a similar impact on warfare to the Hun’s cavalry tactics, when they are available. Wormhole space denizens currently use the lowsec and nullsec exits of their W-Space territory to raid, score kills and generate content in the slow points of the day. Roughly 2,500 wormhole systems exist in the universe, and they are populated by thousands of players in all timezones; you’ll likely notice unusual signatures pop up on scanner, and system local chats fluctuate, from their activities. Their impact has been noticeable, but not overwhelming. The killmails generated can also be quite spectacular.
The new Kronos release coming in two weeks changes the way wormholes will be used. Increasing the availability of lowsec-lowsec wormholes to an astonishing rate of 20% percent chance per system will revolutionize lowsec small gang warfare. My organization, Villore Accords, will be capable of traversing a dozen regions of space searching for kills in the same amount of time it takes to patrol a single region currently. There are 817 low-security systems in the game. That means there will be roughly 163 wormholes spawning every day, connecting these systems together. Scan probe scouts will be enlisted in roaming fleets to trace out these routes, and clever fleet commanders will use them to maneuver their fleets in unpredictable ways, or lay wicked traps against a slower, more bumbling enemy.
For Kronos, CCP is also increasing the quantity of lowsec-nullsec wormholes (wormholes forming in lowsec, and connecting to nullsec) to 9% per system. Any given day, there will be around 74 wormholes of this type forming, waiting to be used. There are 41 nullsec regions total, including the NPC variants. This means there will be roughly two wormholes per region in the game, per day, on a daily-refreshing basis. This is vastly higher than what is currently available.
These wormholes do not have unlimited mass capacity, of course. A 0.0 entity will not be able to launch a 400 battleship fleet through a wormhole in a dastardly surprise attack. But what can happen is something far more sinister and significant. Lowsec entities will profit more from non-moongoo 0.0 content better than the 0.0 entities themselves, per capita.
A bold claim. Many will have difficulty believing it: the author has already rewritten this article once based on Xander Phoena’s opposition to the argument, couched in different terms. But think back to the Huns, where we began this discussion. They did not win because they had the largest army, or even money. They didn’t even levy taxes. They survived and expanded by outmaneuvering their conventional enemies. Wormholes, spawning and connecting to nullsec regions randomly will be a godsend to our lowsec organizations; NPC ratting, exploration opportunities, vast tracts of currently unpopulated and underutilized space, all rich for the plundering. These wormhole routes will provide a means to rebuild capital between fleet fights, gain security status, and generally have fun when not annihilating enemy hordes in lowsec battles. Not to mention providing us the delicious opportunity to strike at the rich carebear underbelly of nullsec, with a secure means of escape. Perhaps we shall see avaricious raiders planting dozens of control tower siphons on profitable reactor and R64 systems… the opportunities are truly endless.
Some more sclerotic nullsec empires might eventually find themselves like the enemies of the Huns of old, whittled down and encircled, collapsing from poor morale and bad leadership. In the end, however, a healthy development would not be that the wormholes would make lowsec more like nullsec; but that it would make nullsec more like lowsec, where every player plays and fights with and against each other, instead of zombie-like NPC’s in Sanctums and exploration sites. CCP once again is focusing on player interaction instead of player button-mashing, and it might be a rude awakening for some.
Imagine for a moment, this scenario playing out in one of the renter regions. How can a nullsec alliance extort rental fees from their renter alliances when lowsec groups raid these same regions for greater profit and more fun? Any alliance that is currently spending billions of isk to squat in an outpost and hold sovereignty will no doubt seriously begin to doubt the cost effectiveness of this plan when players from NPC-held lowsec kill them and steal their exploration loot.
The true test will be in two weeks of course. But for the most part, those I’ve spoken to in the lowsec community are extremely excited and engaged in the prospect. It’s time to escalate the war and our nullsec buddies are invited to participate, whether they want to or not.
Executor GMVA, CEO Moira. Corporation
Tags: gmva, kronos, lowlife, lowsec, niden, WH, wormhole