Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Factional Warfare: How?

I made my resignation as CEO of Strife official today at lunch, assigning the role to my successor and removing all roles. I saw no point in waiting until the end of the week and figured others might relish to role more.

As I make steps toward the reality of Factional Warfare, I need to figure out how I'm going to make use of it. After all, there are a lot of features being released this summer and I don't know which is the most attractive to me.

1) Plain Old Empire War - The first upshot to joining a militia is being at war with all pilots in the opposing militias. In this case, having my corp Katana join the Minmatar militia will put us at war with everyone in the Caldari and Amarr militias. So in essence no where will be safe just like a normal war (for example, FINEG) but with a hell of a lot more war targets.

In addition, joining the militia means that the NPC navies of the opposing factions will shoot on site in the high sec systems of those nations. Suddenly half of high sec space will no-go zone unless I'm really ready to fight. This will lead to a somewhat more polarized space I hope, but it remains to be seen what the end effect is.

2) Militia Missions - Joining a militia gives access to special mission agents. These missions will be directed at helping the war effort and will involve fighting NPCs of the opposing faction. Problem is, the mission locations are in low sec (IIRC) and become visible on the overview for everyone in system as soon as you start it. It could be exciting to try and quickly blaze through missions with corp mates watching my back or even alone, but the fact that even neutrals can see the mission and barge in is off-putting. It might be more fun to patrol and look for such missions myself.

Not to mention the possibility of ninja salvaging! No need to probe, just sneak in and try and get whatever wrecks I can. Heh.

3) Encounters - new cosmic anomalies are being added that are specific to factional warfare and found only in the low sec (and maybe some high sec?) warzones. (Side note on warzones: I'm not sure where they are, how many there are, and what differentiates them.) These things promise to have gates of varying levels so that some of them will only allow tech 1 frigates and destroyers for example, and others will allow everything, and levels in between the two. Again, once found and activated they appear on the overview for everyone. (Another side note: do missions have similar restrictive gates? Need to find out.)

These are attractive because I would try and find the lower level ones and bomb around in cheap frigates and cruisers and see what hell can be had.

4) Fighting for System Occupancy - warzone systems can be fought over by the factions (I think) and have special system bunkers that need to be held for a system to become occupied. Working with the militia and trying to take these systems could be very exciting and an alternative to alliance fleet battles. It remains to be seen how often people try this and the resulting rewards for having your faction gain occupancy over a warzone.

5) Just bombing around with the militia. Screw everything, just log in and find out where people are fighting and go join in.

6) High Sec Terror Runs - Get some decently fast and tankable ships and attack enemy high sec space, avoiding faction navies by staying on the move and attacking any targets foolish enough to lower their guard. Risky but could be exciting.

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So as you can see, I'm not sure what my participation in factional warfare will look like yet. It remains to be seen but there appears to be lots of options to start.

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