Fleet Command: Not Invented By Me Syndrome


I see a lot of upcoming FCs who want to start off in a new corp or alliance or build the foundations of an FC career by designing their own personal doctrine. I’ve had to explain that this is a bad idea so often that it is easier for me to write a short article I can point to later explaining why.

FC =/= Theorycrafter

Trying to prove you are good at both at the same time is multiplicatively harder

A baker is not a restaurant critic. There is some overlapping required knowledge but skill at one is totally separate from skill at the other. FC and Theorycrafter have the same kind of relationship. They are different hats that a player can wear. Instead of both being related to food they are both related to internet spaceship explosions. Trying to prove you are good at one thing is hard enough. Trying to prove you are good at both at the same time is multiplicatively harder.

People already own established doctrines

If you use a popular doctrine the only barrier to overcome is peoples’ doubt in you. They may or may not join based on their best prediction of how you might do. If you make it so that in order to join they have to buy a ship, they also have to weigh the cost of that ship against you in their possibly unconscious cost benefit analysis. By being a new FC with a new doctrine you are stacking the deck against yourself.

Your doctrine doesn’t beat the established baselines

A straight up inferior alternative just to be unique is an exercise in vanity

The absolute most frustrating thing is when a new FC wants to use a doctrine that is worse in every way than the preexisting doctrine it is competing with. For example in a mid-sized gang Vagabonds eat dirt fighting Ishtars. A worthwhile theorycrafter does not present inferior options. The whole point of the job is to min-max to find superior setups. A cheaper weaker alternative is ok.  An inferior alternative that actually does better in another setting is fine. A setup that fits your playstyle better can actually have merit. A straight up inferior alternative just to be unique is an exercise in vanity.

There is a tunnel under the mountain

Do you really want your own personal doctrine anyway? Well if you have some cash you can buy the entire fleet. Ping that you are handing ships out. Say, “You break it, you buy it.” You tip the scales in your favor then. More people will show up than they would otherwise because they do not have to make the initial investment. This is a good way to prototype new doctrines. It is what I do in order to be a special snowflake. Just make sure you write down or somehow otherwise record the names of who got what from you. Eve players will steal everything not nailed down if you let them. Then they will optimize a nail removal technique.

Good luck out there.

Tags: fc, FCing, Mukk

About the author

Mukk Barovian

Mukk is a long time skirmish FC with a penchant for overpropping his ships.