I have a suggestion for changing the duelling mechanics so that it generates more content, and also so that it more closely resembles real life.
You all probably know how duelling worked in real life, back when it was a thing. Rich and deluded sons of wealthy families would get all worked up about what folks thought of them, and the chance to impress some female would generally be enough for folks to bet their lives on a matter of honour.
Duelling was hugely popular, and it had to be banned because all the jumped up little princes were blowing themselves away to impress jumped up little princesses. The elderly folks were horrified by the carnage, so they banned it.
We have the opposite problem, with our duelling. We don’t have enough of it. We have the jumped up little princes (goons et al), and also the jumped up little princesses to impress. (Jita local, killboardz). So why doesn’t duelling attract more carnage? What are we doing wrong?
I’ve been giving the vexing issue some thought. Do you all remember what happened in the playground, when two guys were going to fight after school?
Maybe this is only for the older guys. The new wave snowflakes probably don’t fight after school, they just go on twitter and snark at each others hair style and have a group cry with their metro friends. Or, you know, maybe that’s harsh. Whatever.
The point is, when boys would fight after school, EVERYONE knew about it, and EVERYONE contributed to the fight. To make sure it would happen.
For a start, if you were one of the guys having an argument, other kids would come up to you and encourage you to fight by telling you that the other guy said your mum blows goats. They would tell you that the other guy said you dad blows your uncle for money to by cheap wine/ Kids would tell the other guy the same thing. Everyone would make sure a small disagreement became a matter of great honour. Everybody did their bit to make sure the fight happened.
And then the time and place was always set in advance. After school, maybe at lunch time, at the fighting place. Far from teachers, and all the kids would form a ring around the combatants, to get a good look at the fight and to offer helpful advice, like “Kick him in the nuts”, and “Show him who is the uncle rapist. Twist his nipples.” and so forth.
My point is, once you started towards a fight with another kid, everyone would assist you to get the duel happening. It was always the most exciting thing to happen that day.
I wonder if CCP could change the mechanic so we had a similar thing?
If duals could be “thrown down” against other players, where they lose massive standing across all factions if they chicken out, that would be a thing. Think about that. If another player offers you a dual, and you don’t fight, your NPC standing goes right down. Because you are a massive pussy, and everyone knows it.
But if you turn up and cop a beating, well you might not get a reputation as a great fighter, but you would get respect for courage.
Everyone likes watching the fat kid get a beating, and it is doubly awesome when he manages to land a couple of punches on the way down. It fairly makes a person think there is hope in life, even for the fat kid.
So the mechanics should seriously punish folks who run from duels.
At the same time, duels should be 1v1. Always. I mean, this is real life. All the kids who formed the circle, they would NEVER tolerate other folks getting involved.
And to be fair, this blob mentality is a cancer in eve. I think a lot of folks don’t bother getting fitted for combat because they suspect a blob will arrive mid fight and kill both combatants. I know that the duels mechanic does allow high sec combat with no interference, but I think the mechanics should amplify this feature and make it basically impossible for asshats to profit from interfering. So if someone breaks duelling etiquette, they should go straight to -8 standing across the board, and they can suck on that and HTFU.
The other thing we should be able to do is bet on duels, and also put money in the kitty for the winner. If everyone puts in a few million, and the winner gets the loot, suddenly duelling becomes a profession. So maybe you can only “throw down” on someone if you put 50 million ask in the kitty to start the prize pool going. Folks should only be able to watch the duel (form the ring of spectators) if they contribute a set amount (perhaps few million isk).
I would totally spend a few million isk tom watch a 1v1 duel between guys who genuinely hate each other and want to win. Not to watch corp friends test fits, but real, ass fracturing PVP, with egos on the line, and the princesses of killboardz watching and battering their pretty eyes lashes at the display of foolishness violence.
Duels should also be recorded by CCP and published, so that the shame or glory can be relieved. If the duelling space (by the sun, perhaps) is properly set up, it ought to be possible to record at least some third party perspectives for the record.
This is an important feature. If you are going up against someone hard core, and you think you will be beaten like a gypsies drum, and then you WIN somehow, the you want to rewatch that. You want all your corp to watch that. You want his corp to watch that. You will sub for a whole year if you win a fight like that (I did).
In the good old days, there was always a field somewhere, or some special spot, where the quality went to duel. There were always seconds, and there was always a protocol to start the combat. Ten paces, turn and fire. In our scenario, i guess it could be move away from each other until 10km apart, then engage.
Weapons were always chosen by the party who was challenged, which is something we should retain. If you are going to throw down against some schmuck, you have to fight him in his best fit.
Anyway, that is the basic idea. If we can make duelling more realistic, by making the social consequences a big deal and getting everyone involved, we would have a lot of potential for evenly matched PVP content.
The fat feeble in this game are always crowing that the blob ganking combat is “realistic”, and there is some truth to that claim. Ambush is a viable combat method in war.
But duelling is also highly realistic, and the current game mechanics don’t allow the human psychology to manifest the pointless glory of the schoolyard at the current time.
That, comrades, is an enduring disgrace on this fine game, and this worthy community of brats.
Let’s blame CCP Falcon until he fixes the situation.