I’ve been doing fac-war a bit over a month now, and as a new observer to the system, I’ve noticed a few things. First, Faction Warfare can be a lot of fun! The potential for fights is exciting, and you don’t need to be sitting on billions (or trillions) of ISK to have a great time. In fact, some of the funnest fits are cheap (less than 10 or even 5 million ISK). Small gang warfare predominates, and solo action is relatively easy to find. Faction Warfare generates that excitement that can be addictive. Addiction notwithstanding, there is a serious issue.
The glaring problem with fac-war is how in-game rewards are set up. I won’t go into the specifics of how you reap those rewards (fac-war pilots know this already), but lets say it boils down to time spent sitting in plexes, doing missions, or killing ships. From my personal experience, I have listed these in order of decreasing in-game reward and increasing complexity. Not only is the complexity and risk not met with increased reward, the low-risk/high-reward nature of plexing is a haven for bots.
Now, people do things for different reasons. I’m not here to say that people who farm LP, or mult-box missions in jackdaws are a problem. In the end, they’re just solving problems as they seem them and (I guess) having a good time. They are seeking to be rewarded by a system CCP set up, where minimal effort equals maximum reward. And, sadly, their behavior is often indistinguishable from bot behavior. I am guessing that this is not what CCP had in mind.
In the spirit of improving gameplay might I offer the following ideas:
- Implement a frigate which is invulnerable to d-scan, as d-scan appears to be a prime tool for bots. It could be fragile, aimed at taking down bots, and players who behave just like them.
- When in a plex, prevent warping for all ships within the 30km radius of the outpost, plus a timer for initiating warp after moving beyond the radius.
- Alternatively, similar to attacking a station, have a timer which inhibits warp each time a player shoots at the NPC within the plex. (This has the obvious downside of conferring advantage to the defense, but since they get less payout, perhaps this is reasonable.)
- Modify mission NPC algorithms such that they will not fire on members of the same faction, unless they are aggressed by said individual. (Shoot your own faction, all bets are off)
- Improve payouts for PVP actions. Your faction should pay you well enough to bleed for them that you don’t need a side hustle to replace lost ships. This could perhaps be as simple as creating a separate ship insurance system for fac-war members, with payouts being increase.
I’m curious what thoughts others have which might improve the experience of fac-war. Anyone from CCP interested in testing out these ideas?