Friday, April 29, 2016

The Age of Sovless Wars

World War Bee (or the War of Sovless Aggression) taught us several things I think are worth pondering over.

The Fozzie sov system had its first epic test in the most recent great war and it demonstrated one truth is still true: all things being equal, the side with N pilots is defeated by the side with N+1 pilots. No amount of strategy or doctrines could have saved the Imperium from the wall of enemies arrayed against them, but what for certain doomed them to lose sovereignty was the lack of numbers to defend their space. The Mittani can blame it on Fizzle Sov and how the any attacker can aggressively  entosis while only the sov holder alliance can defensively counter-entosis, but really he's just trying to deflect blame from the Imperium's failures in diplomacy, grand strategy, and leadership.

Another lesson from this war was the sheer concentration of ISK in the hands of gambling site owners. This war would not happen without the infusion of ISK from IWANTISK bankers looking to settle a score with parts of the Imperium. While the ISK was not necessary to the victory over the Imperium, it was necessary to motivate several parties to make the effort to see it happen. Once they found the Imperium unable to withstand the assault, natural predator instincts took over.

I fear the results of these rich individuals learning of their power that the ISK can buy. Its possible we are entering the Age of Sovless wars where holding or taking sov is a secondary consideration, and the real factors have to do with who the ISK holders want destroyed. After all, if you can be paid to fight instead of having to rat for your ISK, wouldn't you take that option too?

The war for Deklien may be over and parts of the Moneybadger coalition breaking up, but I expect hostilities to continue for a long time. It was years before CVA restored their dominance in Providence and the area of the North that was razed was many times larger and is now being balkanized into semi-friendly/semi-hostile kingdoms. And don't think for a moment that the Goons will sit in Saranen forever pouting over everyone in the playground coming to kick their sandcastle over. In the end, this upset of the status quo in the North is good for everyone involved and the new life breathed into the Reasons To Be for both winners and losers will fuel wars for much time to come. 

The real question is how will citadels and capital changes affect the next war?

Interesting times indeed.


  1. I for one welcome our bourgeoise overlords.

  2. You make a good point, Kirith. Are large scale wars going to come down to who has the best out-of-game methods of amassing ISK? The IWI guys probably could not have come up with the 1 trillion isk per week (according to the interview with him that I read) had he not built a gambling website.

    What if the goons had a friendly gambling site on their side and used that money to funds the defense of their allies?

    I find it a bit less satisfying to think that large scale wars get funded using out-of-game methods.

    1. Guess the goon leadership skimmed too much off the top for RMT. If they had kept more cash in in-game currency from their multi-trillion ISK cash flows, maybe this war would have had a different result.

      I have never been so happy to be so wrong. I truly believed that the goon RMT bastions were impregnable.

  3. Well i would say that... it is not new. It is how all the war of the past 5 years got decided.

    And do not believe the narrative. Isk was not the real decider here. Not more than in all the previous attempts.

  4. Isk is the catalyst and motivation. The predatory instinct to hit a dying empire hard was what really caused this to roll downhill.

  5. We need real frontiers in sov wars.

  6. I don't really think we can draw many conclusions from this war. The truth was the Goons were beaten by every metric, numbers, subcap battles, supercap battles, supercap positioning, time-zone strategies, ISK - even, somehow, discipline and propaganda.

    The war wouldn't have happened without the ISK, but would MBC still have won a war without the ISK? Probably. A lot of their fleets don't SRP, they haven't had to replace any major losses. The ISK got them people, but it was people not ISK that won the battles.

    If Pandemic Legion hadn't chosen to fully commit to war for the first time in years then The Imperium would have had supercap superiority so the MBC couldn't field slow capital/sub-cap fleets so the Imperium could have controlled regions from anything but entosis harassment (which isn't that effective if the enemy is determined - see The Imperium's attempts).

    The Imperium lost the war when they got soft and when they let all of EVE Online gang up against them. Hopefully in the future we'll see more equal wars and learn if supercaps can beat numbers and economy can beat propaganda.