CCP, please tone down the NPC miners

I play in a US timezone, and generally by the time I log in, I literally cannot find belts anywhere around me. I do not mine often, but it’s turning into a dominating amount of time just to find anything, much less find the actual ore that I need. Generally speaking, the times that I do find it, I find myself in direct competition with an NPC fleet that warps in within 10-15 minutes of starting.

Please tone this down. By the time my timezone comes around for prime-time play, there is a startling lack of ability to get even small amounts of resources on our own. As a small corp in a shared timezone, this is pretty crippling. I get that this idea was someone’s baby, but this baby is pooping all over everything right now.

If it wasn’t the NPC miners taking the ore, it would be other players mining in other time zones. I don’t see how you not being able to play until later in the day is CCP’s fault. The NPC miners are easily chased away. You don’t lose any standings if you simply fire at them but don’t kill them. Just fire off a few shots at them, and warp out before the response fleet arrives. Come back to the belt a couple of minutes later and you will find that both the NPC mining fleet and their response fleet are no longer there.

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This is known as a false justification. It doesn’t work that often among reasonable people.

One is an automated process with extraneous mechanics that runs reliably and does not suffer loss, the other is in flow of the dynamic of the game of being mostly player driven and that can escalate into territorial dispute, depending on where you’re located.

If I’m in an area where players are mining it out before I get there, then a move can fix it. If no matter where I am, that presence is there, this is not promotion of scarcity but a removal of opportunity. As noted, the belts are already gone. They’re always gone by the time this timezone occurs with, again, startling regularity.

I’m generally a PvPer, who is trying to form a foundation for a newbie-friendly corp with various outlets of activity that can contribute to a group. I’d have no problems with shooting them if there were actually something to gain by it. The belt is either already gone, or I had to travel far enough for the belt that repeatedly bringing ships to do it is not exactly a great mechanic.

It’s a mechanic in a game. This doesn’t have to be ‘CCP’s fault’. It’s feedback from players on an implemented feature. I can see that it’s been repeated feedback. No need to try to make feedback irrelevant when it’s clearly describing a hardship that doesn’t need to be eliminated, but is currently overtuned.

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Sounds like a case of bad luck to me. It just depends on where you are mining and how many belts are in the system. The more belts, the better your chances there is some ore left. The NPC miners can only be in so many belts. For example, I mine in high sec and I pretty much have an entire system with 12 belts to myself as hardly anyone ever mines here. There’s more ore than I can possibly mine. I’ve been mining in the same belt for 4 hours now and haven’t seen a single NPC miner…

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I had the exact same complaint as you a couple of years back when the NPC miners first came out, then I figured out how to deal with them and still get all the ore I wanted.

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It could certainly be bad luck. I’ve got about 35 belts within 1 jump of one of my jump clone locations, and about 20 within 1 jump of the other.

I find one every couple days and can get two hours or so in. But that was why I waited over a week since starting to feel that something was amiss before posting anything.

I believe that even toning it down (not elimination) by 15-20% could have a real impact on things while still providing the content that was meant to be provided by the feature. And I -do- question the actual value of the content added by it, because it’s a neat idea (as I said, I’m a PvPer, it would be nice if the mechanics made me able to help out the indies reliably through shooting, but the way this works seems to be not worth it by the reading I’ve done) that seems to be in need of adjustment to make it viable as actual content addition.

I don’t see a lot of people going around hunting these things.

Where you at and I’ll come help and give you what I grab.

The T1 barges, Ventures, and Haulers can be killed easy enough and looted. The haulers sometimes contain skins and whatnot. But the T2 barges and T2 haulers aren’t quite as easy to kill. The response fleet is rather nasty as well. A combined force of various diamond-level NPC’s that will scram/point you. And the more ships you bring to kill them with, the more ships they warp in.

Now, if you could actually win against the NPC fleet, it would be worth it, but I don’t think you can. I think they just keep spawning ships in. Kind of like the faction police. You can fight them but can’t really beat them.

It’s not an issue if other players take it before you ; it’s an issue if the mechanisms systematically prevent people from some timezone from having resource, for the sole reason of the timezone.

IMO the issue is more, that the belts respawn at fixed time. They should respawn with time, NOT at DT.

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The issue is being dependent on a static feature. There are multitude of alternatives to mining within an asteroid belt.

  • Ore Anomalies

  • Mining within Security Missions

  • Mining Missions (if you are not requiring direct minerals)

  • Poaching from a 0.5 sec Moon

  • Mining from an Emerging Conduit

Each of these are untouched by the NPC miners. Some are even immune to the Triglavian roaming threats. They have reduced risk from interference by other players. Yeah, some do require group play, but this is a MMO afterall.

Industry to my view is not directly about Risk vs Reward. It is about Effort equals Reward. The options I have listed need a little more effort, but are way more rewarding.

I would predict that eventually CCP will replace Security Mission standard ores, with alternative art or the pseudo ores from Mining Missions. If they are serious about throttling minerals flowing into the game. But is an option now. Take it while it lasts.

No, that’s not the issue. You’re currently either not reading what’s already been stated, or just ignoring it to continue projecting a personal preference.

There is currently a mechanic introduced into the game that creates scarcity only for one portion of the playerbase, not based around in game location or anything having to do with the game. It’s based on timezone. The scarcity is not experienced by the other portion of the playerbase.

When it’s a player-devised scarcity, that falls into the theme of the game; player-run economy, player-acquired resources, player-driven conflict, with automated constructs of code that facilitate content. When it is a scarcity that is driven by an in-game mechanic that cannot be fought against unless you are present at that other timezone anyway, it becomes an issue.

So again, simply throttling it back 15-20% will lower the impact. Or we can go the other way and say it’s healthy for the game, and make it so that npc missions gain a timer that increases in duration between when you can accept them as the day goes on, rats that are on longer timers to respawn as the day goes on, and scannable sites that become fewer as the day goes on. That is the function of the mechanic as this stands, because those would be similar mechanics on other methods of income within the game.

Actually, in rereading, let me rephrase the beginning of what I said. You are not ignoring what’s been said (though I disagree with the statement that the problem is the static feature dependence). You gave some methods of coping with the situation, which I should be appreciative of. Thank you for that.

However, I stand by that this is an issue of a mechanic that needs tweaking because it is timezone-affecting as a component of the game itself, which should be addressed. If we want to implement scarcity, it should affect uniformly or be player-driven scarcity. I would not have issue if it was other players impacting resource acquisition, but in this case it’s a feature that is punishing for groups in a separate timezone.

The idea stated above of making belts not based off of downtime is also an option, but I think it would be an easier project to simply make the impact of NPC’s on the availability of resources lesser so that it could reliably reach all timezones.

You’re welcome.

At the other end of the spectrum there are Shattered Wormholes, which cannot be lived in since they do not permit anchorage. But they have both Ice and Ores. No one mines there. Because neither the risk or the effort translate to reward. Part of this relates an abundance of resources outside of this space. It is certainly not solo friendly. The hull size restrictions create logistics challenges.

But given all these factors; these resources were placed there by CCP for a reason. The Endurance expedition frigate was designed specifically with the area of the game, in mind. Should there be change?

Reduce resources elsewhere?
Introduce limited Anchorage?
Alternative logistics?
Revisit the Endurance?
Unique Resources?

I would be curious to see if the shortage is dialed to eleven, is this enough stick to see players day-tripping. (one way - yeah). I personally suspect it is just another, a long line of abandon features.

Back to your question. (this sounds a lot better in my head, than actually typed out, so my logic might be non sequitur). The possible solution would be the a reduction of static belts, the same volume translated into a spawning anomalies. Which would circumvent the down-time linked refresh system. (because I do not think that anybody would ask for a mico DT half way through the gaming day). This translates to harvest-able resources across time-zones. Because it does suck to log-in at the 20 plus hour of the daily cycle to have almost no content.

But, as I posted, I have long since moved away from dependence on belts for my daily bread.

The actual ratio of minerals refined, should to my mind align roughly to their consumption across manufacture. Isogen needs to be reduced - such as less Omber, reducing refine returns for Omber or increased requirement in BPO/C. I would point a precedent of doubling nocx and megac in manufacture.

I’ll wait, I’ll see and I’ll adapt.

I have bad timing as well when it comes to mining most of the time. Frequently having to try and outpace the blue miners is annoying. I wouldn’t mind if they could adjust so that they start their belt clearing an hour or two later each week. That way it would rotate slowly and eventually everyone could enjoy the fun of having to deal with them.

I’m all for CCP removing static ore belts and making them anomalies. They would pop up at random times during the day and you would have to scan them down.

But until they do that, the solution is simple. If you are trying to mine and NPC miners enter the belt, take a few shots at them, warp back to the station, wait a few minutes, warp back to the belt and they will be gone and you can resume mining.

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Don’t forget the Porpoise, the only battlecruiser in EVE that fits through a frigate hole.

whut ?
I thought it was cruiser sized.

This mechanic is not NPC mining fleets, though. It is a belt respawn on downtime. Even without NPC fleets, you will generally find more ore shortly after downtime than shortly before it.

The fix that is needed there is a continuous refreshment of belt minerals.

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How much ore can you get if you destroy the entire NPC mining op? More than if you just sat there with strip miners?

You will get whatever they’ve mined. You can kill one or two of them before the response fleet warps in, but there’s no way you could kill them all. And if you did bring enough ships to kill of the miners and their hauler, the response fleet would warp in twice as many ships as you have and nuke you.