NPC Interdictors

Hello all,

This thread is to discuss and compile ideas for potential NPC interdictors.

In: https://youtu.be/9iyVnarc2YE?t=4513 there is brief mention by CCP Rise of a potential NPC interdictors.

NPC spawn triggers
Gate fire (for spawn at gate)
Gate fire in system
Player appears on gate grid
Player ship types on gate grid

NPC location spawn
Gate center points
Gate drag points
Gate catch points

NPC Behaviour
Delay bubbling
Catch bubbling
Drag bubbling
Pre-uncloak bubbling
De-cloaking behaviour

Loot table
Warp disrupt probes
Interdictor relevant special commodities
Faction Interdiction Warp Disrupt Probes
Faction Interdiction Sphere Launcher
Blueprint copies for new interdictor related items
Nanite repair paste
NPC ship type specific modules
Single large gun modules (as if the NPC had previous looted another ship)

Additional considerations:
The spawn rate of such npcs would need to be adjusted to take account of the fact that with any sufficiently large fleet the probability of an interdictor npc spawn while they are travelling would be very high if the spawn trigger is a simple function of gate activation. Potentially capping the number of interdictor spawns in a constellation/region/superregion/ over a time period might mitigate this balance issue.

As ever, any ideas or considerations of the idea would be welcome. Thank you.

@ISD @ISD_Dorrim_Barstorlode @ISD_Lord_Arranoth this guy has literally made four posts in the span of 24 hours about the same topic, “Overhaul of Player and NPC Interdiction”, and it’s getting ridiculous (three in Player Features & Ideas, one in Assembly Hall). Each topic is a minor variation of the same thing but follows the same general theme. Please have the topics consolidated or do whatever intervention is required to stop this spamming of the forums :roll_eyes:

I have made several posts regarding the topic of “Player and NPC Interdiction”. They are different posts however, but all emerge from the same immediate context of potential planned changes that might impact interdictors.

Definitely appreciate your view however, and you may be right that a consolidated post is a better idea. I will defer to the moderation team, and hopefully have the opportunity to re-post if they decide my posts violate rules or are against the spirit of the rules here.

This is a solution in need of a problem. Under no circumstances do we need NPCs making such dramatic and unbalancing effects on the space that is supposed to be about player agency in a PvP competition. NPCs should be passive entities that you can choose to engage for profit, not a threat of instant and often unavoidable death.

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Thank you for the comment!

I think perhaps “Under no circumstances” is a bit strong.

The statement that NPCs should be passive is a bold one, and while you may be correct , the direction of NPC design has been one in which they are increasingly active. NPC interdictors have been mentioned as a potential new addition and it might be useful to imagine how they could be implemented in a way that doesn’t result in the consequences you described.

I do agree however, that an NPC interdictor should not be able to kill any awake pilot.

This is a massive mistake by CCP, and it’s only going to get worse if it starts happening in nullsec. EVE succeeds because of its PvP sanbox elements, not because of the NPCs. If CCP allows NPC actions to replace player agency it’s a death sentence for the game.

it might be useful to imagine how they could be implemented in a way that doesn’t result in the consequences you described

Ok, let’s have the discussion. Useful ways in which this could be implemented without the consequences I described:

Ok, we’re done.

The simple fact is that interdictors are, in many cases, instant death for anyone they catch. Getting bubbled in a ship without bubble immunity leaves you helpless against whoever is trying to catch you, and is often immediately followed by conventional tackle and overwhelming firepower. Even if you make the combat NPCs weak enough that an active player can just tank them and fly out of the bubble there will still be NPC bubbles involved in PvP fights, providing a massive unearned advantage to one side.

This is a massive mistake by CCP, and it’s only going to get worse if it starts happening in nullsec. EVE succeeds because of its PvP sanbox elements, not because of the NPCs. If CCP allows NPC actions to replace player agency it’s a death sentence for the game.

I’m not sure NPC actions would replace player agency in this case, but rather it would simply be another environmental consideration.

There would be NPC bubbles involved in PVP fight, but if balanced properly, it would be same advantage as the unlikely scenario of being supported by an NPC pirate fleet that you have standings towards in NPC null-sec on a station.

There didn’t seem to much discussion in the “…”

The only way NPC Interdiction would be viable is if these NPC interdictors were confined to high end combat sites (ie. under no circumstances will NPCs be warping to you like Trigs at belts or stations), and these sites would have to be approached in fleets the same way you would Incursions or Invasions, or they would have to be soloable by caps (maybe by “hacky” fits like how some people solo certian L5s in Bhargests). If that were to happen, then the question becomes - do we need a third mandatory-fleet PVE activity or yet another solo cap PVE site?

It sounds cool, but in practice it is at best redundant and at worst they don’t contribute anything to the game experience or the game experience would be very unbalanced (ie. very few players would be able to handle these sites and the rewards would be comparable to existing non-interdiction sites).

There’s no balance to be found here. Just because it can be balanced with players doesn’t mean it can be balanced with rats.

Don’t be a smartass :roll_eyes:. You know the point she was trying to make. There’s nothing to discuss because it’s a bad idea due to not solving a problem, not enhancing the game, and being very impractical. Even if it could be balanced in relation to the sites in which they would be present on a standalone basis, it would be imbalanced in relation to the risk/rewards of other sites in which they would not be present. We’re not going to suddenly toss in interdiction bubbles into existing sites - the outrage would be real.

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Oh, you noticed that? It was deliberate.

I’m not sure NPC actions would replace player agency in this case, but rather it would simply be another environmental consideration.

Of course it replaces player agency. Now if you want bubbles you have to deploy them yourself. Under your proposal you can just hang out around NPC interdictors and wait for them to bubble your target for you.

There would be NPC bubbles involved in PVP fight, but if balanced properly, it would be same advantage as the unlikely scenario of being supported by an NPC pirate fleet that you have standings towards in NPC null-sec on a station.

Just how exactly do you intend to balance something as overwhelmingly powerful as bubbles being given for free to one side in a fight, especially when the NPCs are not able to understand what is happening in a PvP fight (a prerequisite for being able to balance their impact)?

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You know… this kind of alludes to how gray/blue non-mining diamond rats were one of the worst things introduced to the game… NPC mercs should not be a thing… having them do the dirty work for you… “let’s wait for our enemies to show up and have the NPCs interdict them for us” is ■■■■■■■■.

Thank you for the interesting idea of site-specific interdictors. The initial post does not actually include those locations as spawn-points but rather stargates.

What do you mean by:

Just because it can be balanced with players doesn’t mean it can be balanced with rats.

I do take your point about “being a smartass”, but I’m genuinely interested in actually discussing it and simply saying there is no discussion to be had is not sufficient.

This seems somewhat hyperbolic. Many people have limited to no interactions with diamonds rats. In the case of diamond rats, except in niche cases (with an ESS) there is no consistent way I’m aware of that they can be consistently used to the advantage of a player at a stargate or citadel grid. This would be the same for NPC interdictors, I allude to the issue in my original post.

My null associates relay to me no shortage of ways they leverage diamond rats outside of ESS traps, including station camps among others. As the Co-Head of the United Standings Improvement Agency [USIA] I can tell you that we are regularly approached by potential clients wanting to increase their standings precisely to take advantage of using them against their enemies via these techniques. Whether or not NPC Interdictors would be affected by standings is irrelevant if the initial force positions themselves in such a way to cause the NPC interdictors to reposition themselves in response so that when the opposing players arrive they are bubbled by the NPC interdictors. NPCs should not do the work of players.

NPC Interdictors at gates is probably the biggest NO NO NO NO NO of them all. Of all the the places in which NPC Interdictors could possibly appear in the game, that is literally the least appropriate place for them to spawn. Gates should only be camped by players, and players should not be able to leverage NPCs to help them toward that end. If a controlling force wants to prevent passage in their area of control, they can control gates themselves and not rely on rats to do that for them. Instead of players dying to overpowered NPCs they did not consent to fighting (because they didn’t warp to the high end combat site), they should die to other players. That PVP-level trigs drop on stations and belts is a highly controversial decision by CCP that even many bitter vets that give carebears a hard time feel it was going too far. (Same thing with the hisec-turning-into-lowsec mechanic.) That should not be a precedent on which additional PVE content - zero consent PVE - should be built on. At least with the belt rats they weren’t much of a threat even to a day one Corvette so that hardly makes for an exception to the rule of “no consent PVE is bad”.

I don’t know how to clarify this, really. I thought it was fairly straight forward. I guess what I’m trying to get at is that player vs player interactions are very different from player vs NPC interactions, so you cannot expect interdiction balancing for one to apply necessarily to the other, especially when you consider a player vs NPC vs player situation where you have at least two opposing player forces and NPCs simultaneously engaged.

Pointless, potentially annoying “make work”.

I suggest to OP he play the game more.

-1

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@ Vuassa We do have information in our forum moderation policy regarding ‘spamming’. Creating multiple posts on what is esentially different parts of the same topic is, in my opinion, borderline. I see you’ve already reflected on that and, since they do seem to be generating discussion threads that might get muddled if the threads were merged we can leave them up.

In future I would advise you to consolidate your ideas into one thread. It is much easier to digest also for those reading your proposals.

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Thank you. In the future, I will ensure that I consolidate ideas as much as possible. I’d viewed the ideas although emerging from the same context but as independent of each other in terms of possible implementation. I can certainly see that this might mean useful discussion is missed by the way I’ve gone about it as to the interaction of ideas (in particular warp disruption effect range changes and new larger, more transient warp disrupt probes).

This doesn’t seem a particular constructive comment, and might be construed as insulting. I do play the game quite a bit, both on this character and others.

In terms of the interdiction sphere launcher probe variants in the original post, do you have any comments?

Thank you very much for this.

I think you are quite correct that there are particular issues with NPC vs Player interactions, one being that NPC do not appear in local and consequently, being caught by a catch or drag bubble or jumping into a cloaked NPC dictor is not something that shares the same information context as player vs player.

Your concerns about the use or leveraging on NPC Interdictors to the advantage of players is well-grounded if the implementation was similar to diamond rats. While I understand you think that diamond rats were a mistake, I can’t see how lone NPC interdictor spawns on gates at an appropriately low rate (in terms of gate activations and capped daily/12 hourly spawn rate) would generate anything other than more complex dynamic environments in which players could play.

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