Thoughts on the Wardec Changes (from a member of Pirat)

To preface what I hope to not be a wall of text (it probably will be) I’ll note that I’ve been playing Eve Online since 2012 on and off. I have experience in most areas of space doing things such as:

  • Suspect baiting
  • Solo, small group, & large group wardecs
  • Ganking, freighter bumping, & freighter dueling
  • “Solo” & group BLOPS in Lowsec and Nullsec
  • High class wormholes (PVE & PVP)

So I’m the kind of player that loves game play where I use / abuse mechanics to tip the scales in my favor. I love hunting, stalking, and striking at the best possible time. I’m very much a risk averse player not because I’m scared or embarrassed of losses, but because I like to do whatever I can in order to gain an upper hand and get the kill or win the objective. I enjoy theory crafting and finding ways to break CCP’s game, so Dev blog releases are always super fun for my friends and I as we discuss loopholes and ways to accomplish what we want to do. It’s a double-edged sword as I’ve found myself subject to CCP’s BANHAMMER for 15 days after I found and used a method to hyperdunk after CCP thought they patched it out of the game.

I am eager to see changes to the game in Highsec, namely the risk / reward balance and Wardecs. I want it to be a place where new players can learn the game without getting frustrated at every turn, but I also want our established citizens to have something worth fighting for. Isn’t it ideal that conflict, success, defeat, and the relationships we forge in-game be something of substance? Should we treat the game like a farming simulator, or should we actively push for CCP to enable players to interact with each other? Lets talk about what CCP is planning to do with Wardecs.

Neutral Logi

I am fine with what CCP is doing with neutral logi. People will “adapt or die” and I have my own personal conflicts with how this changes some suspect baiting where people rely on reps, but I believe those players can adapt. Overall the change won’t shakeup wardecs much contrary to the moral victory being had by people that rally against it. The biggest benefit to neutral logi is the fact that you can scout with it, so instead we’ll just move them in-house and use another neutral character for scouting. Overuse of logi will still be something that is bellyached about because we’ll still have it.

100M Flat War Cost

I personally like this change because I’m in Pirat and we like to maintain lots of wars, most of the time against the largest groups in the game. I also have seen in the past how raising the cost of wars has a negative reaction that feeds directly into what a lot of people are vocal about - players consolidating into larger groups to save on war costs. It’s an issue in Highsec because it’s effectively the same thing as a “Blue Donut” with less players that can be potential opponents and competitors in the Highsec pvp ecosystem.

War HQ (structure based content)

I get that wars need to be revamped and that a change needed to happen. I can agree that with no win condition and no tangible thing to actually fight over that there lies an issue where corps find themselves at war with an aggressor that is hard to catch and takes advantage of varying degrees of risk management. There’s loopholes, wonky mechanics, and all sorts of niche things that create gameplay centered around guerrilla warfare and it’s exactly the kind of gameplay a lot of us love.

I’ll be blunt in that I believe that these exact changes were presented by CCP because the loudest group groaning about wardecs are those from Nullsec while pushing the “think of the children theme”. I mean it makes sense because if you look at Pirat’s killboard you’ll see that the majority of players we kill are from Nullsec. It is parroted that these changes where the aggressor has “skin in the game” will create content where Highsec residents have a point in which the aggressors are vulnerable and the defenders will maybe band together to take them down or go at it by themselves. If you’ve spent any time in Highsec and are honest, I believe you’ll know this is likely not going to pan out this way. The only thing this does is enable the large Nullsec groups to form their N+1 fleets and show up to some timers. I love the thought that there is the potential for proper fleet fights, and I’m not complaining that we’re inevitably going to lose some structures but that’s all this change really does is further enable large Nullsec entities by bringing their N+1 features to Highsec.

I was recently on the Open Comms show where I discussed these War Dec changes. The general consensus from everyone else was that since Nullsec has to deal with structures, then Highsec should too. I fundamentally disagree with this because what works or is desirable in Nullsec may not work in Highsec. I believe that CCP can do better to provide actual potential content that isn’t going to just result in N+1 behavior.

What would I do differently?

First I’ll say that I acknowledge that many of you fundamentally HATE wars. You hate any mechanic that would force you to be defensive or to do something you don’t want to do despite being war eligible. I think wars and conflict have a place in Eve Online, and find that the narratives that can come out of them to be incredible. Take a look at the old forums and read Cannibal Kane’s stuff and you’ll see a player that’s inspired so many to play this game. Hell, in the past I posted a good number of stories and experiences to my own blog that showcased just how personal and intimate wars CAN be. The landscape of Highsec pvp and Mercenary groups has changed drastically over the years, even since 2012 when I started playing. There are few actual mercenaries that still take ISK to perform services, but there are still players lingering about that are “mercenary hunters” that use the same or similar guerrilla warfare tactics to trap, trick, and kill mercs. I believe that it is primarily this kind of guerrilla warfare that is typically required to kill us Highsec PVP’ers that most other players find unfavorable. It can be time consuming, frustrating, and definitely requires more effort than just trying to roll up in your 30-man fleet expecting us to undock. Luckily I have a solution for this.

Steer clear of Structure Based Content

Timers, N+1, hardly any interest in defense, and the unlimited nature in which how many structures can be put into space are something that most players in Highsec dislike. I don’t believe that there’s a large demographic of the Nullsec player base that just loves timer based structure content… especially one where you may have to alarm clock for AU timers and do it 3 times. I reject any notion that just because that’s the way it is in Nullsec, that it has to be that way in Highsec. I can think of a better and simpler solution:

GUERRILLA WARFARE! Sure it can be demoralizing, but it’s effective on both ends. So many of you complain about the inability to kill some of us that are risk-averse, but you fail to use any amount of effort or imagination. You roll down the pipe with your large fleet basically tooting horns and announcing your presence, and of course when we see a 10-20 man fleet and we only have 3-5 people online a lot may feel like they don’t want to take the fight. Most everyone exhibits this similar behavior in one way or another in all areas of space. There’s nothing wrong with having no interest in “honor brawling”. If you want to fight us, catch us… and that’s where this leads me. There are players and groups in Highsec that are more than capable of fighting on your behalf and participating in this guerrilla warfare if you enable them. What I propose is that we keep the victory conditions, but base them around actual PVP content in conjunction with the war report and not some cumbersome structure that is incorrectly visioned as a catalyst of content.

  • Alliance “A” declares war on corp “B”. The war goes on for (1) week and the aggressor kills more in ISK than the defender. The war is allowed to continue as long as it’s paid for and the war report will be examined weekly to see if the defender has come back and surpassed the aggressor. If that happens, then see below for a similar conclusion…

  • Alliance “A” declares war on corp “B”. The war goes on for (1) week and the defender kills more in ISK than the aggressor. The war ends because the defender was victorious and they are immune from a wardec from that specific aggressor for (2) weeks.

What this does is actively encourages gameplay where you’re pursuing combat. It’s not reliant on timers that can be spread over ridiculous periods of time. Sure it can be “effort” to try to catch and kill someone that is using guerrilla warfare tactics himself, but there’s plenty of my Highsec associates that are very skilled in this. So what of the Highsec PVE corp with no teeth to bite with? Well luckily this is a change that can better bolster guns for hire. They have the option to pay another entity to properly hunt and kill these aggressors. Tired of your brainless idiots feeding on their way to a trade hub? Well you can pay for assistance!

Additional Changes… Locators!

Wars have really been in a state where a lot of us are looking back to the glory days of the past. The consolidation of Highsec PVP’ers as well as most of the content being centered around interdicting trade hubs and scouring the pipes is something that even I don’t find ideal. The removal of the watchlist really dealt a deathblow to the many pilots that loved hunting and stalking away from the trade hubs and pipes. Yes, I know that camping trade hubs has always been a thing, and I can’t deny that hunting near a watering hole isn’t something that is a big staple of this. What I’m proposing is that we return to some kind of limited functioning watchlist. If you’ve ever tried to track down and hunt a specific person of interest, you’ll know how cumbersome and defeating it is to run locate after locate only to find that they are offline… after you’ve burned 30 jumps with your scout. I propose the following:

  • Some kind of Upwell structure that in itself serves as a place to keep and maintain a watchlist.

  • Could be an Upwell service module that has high cost, something that isn’t disposable. We should have to care about it and want to defend it to maintain the luxury it provides.

Additional Changes… Resource Scarcity!

Conflict is good, especially when it’s attached to something that’s worth fighting for. The potential for unique interactions and experiences tied to resources that pilots are competitive over is really neat in my opinion. The more things we have to fight over, the more chances for potential interaction - and that’s a good thing.

Additional Changes… BOOSHING!

Personally I find the real lack of strategic and skillful options to be lacking. I feel that if we were able to boosh in Highsec that it would open the door for incredibly interesting plays where a smaller group could effectively take on a larger one just by utilizing superior strategy and tools at their disposal. Yeah I can already picture everyone screaming, “but that will be broken!” and “it will be the ultimate griefing tool!”. Well that’s why I suggest we try to enable booshing in Highsec with conditional statements. Something simple like this:

If combat = legal; boosh = yes

If combat = illegal; boosh = no

Imagine you’re on a gate and you have (2) war targets and (3) neutrals clumped up (the neutrals might by trying to ninja loot or may just be watching). You activate your boosh and the game checks to see who you can legally shoot with a green safety (war targets, suspects, criminals, and such) and booshes them off while ignoring pilots that don’t fall into those categories. Think of it how HIC bubbles function differently in Highsec / Lowsec compared to Wormholes and Nullsec… “Banned in Empire Space: TRUE”. So we already have situations where conditional statements are used in the game. It would be really nice to see Command Destroyers opened up to become a useful ship class in Highsec all while raising the skill ceiling of the game here.


I know that there’s a ton of hatred surrounding wars where the general consensus is that most everyone would enjoy nothing more than to see us and our gameplay destroyed. I hope that you’re able to see the points I make and find merit in them. I plan on running for CSM, so if you have specific questions about anything, feel free to drop on by my campaign thread and ask away!

@CCP_Lebowski @CCP_Falcon @CCP_Fozzie

@ISD_Dorrim_Barstorlode if this topic needs to be moved, do so… I was uncertain where this should go.*


Nope, looks good, concise and constructive. Have at!


Well…the first step to solving a problem is admitting you have the problem… :wink:


Oof, got me! :slight_smile:

Booshing only working with wars is something I can agree with if CCP can do it.

The Upwell structure for watch list is a good idea, I hope that is listened to.

You said this:

And then your suggestions for war victory which are based on something you think is not going to happen.

I am picking up more hisec groups developing at this point, so it might. Anyway you should note that changes in the way people play the game can occur if it ends up being the best way and this type of change takes time to happen.

Anyway good points as always.

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As for the anti-war hatred, it’s got a couple sources:

  1. Farmers who have no interest in any war or PvP, ever. They’re here to farm, not fight.

  2. Players who haven’t really learned the skills or got the gear/numbers/resources to adequately defend against wars.

  3. People who dislike being taken advantage of, repeatedly. As the OP said, he uses every trick in the book to make sure a fight is never fair. The aggressor always has the advantage here (barring mistakes), because they choose the target, they choose the encounter style, they choose the time of hunting to be when the odds are heavily on their side. The defender can only react (except in rare cases) to an uneven fight in a situation where a clever aggressor has already tilted the odds against them.

Because of the nature of aggressor/defender, the aggressor is always meeting his goals and choosing his own game play style. Even if the war fails, its the war he chose and was fought at the time and in the way he chose. The defender is nearly always being forced to respond to something they didn’t want, while at a disadvantage, without any option to meet their own goals and playstyle choices.

The nature of PvP in games is that it has always attracted those who wish to see themselves as big bad predators, and they nearly always choose prey that they are fairly certain they will succeed against. (You’re not a very big bad predator if you pick a target and it stomps you, are you?) It is wolves going after sheep, then patting each other on the back and laughing about how very dangerous they are, and oh the bleats of those sheep as the blood pours out, so sweet!

I have always felt that risk, danger, the nature of a dog-eat-dog world, adds much to the atmosphere of what EVE is and how it needs to be played. Unfortunately, implementing Wardec changes that achieve nothing but “making highsec war more effective for the aggressors” is not a growth path for EVE.

EVE needs new players, needs more players, needs players in all aspects of the game (not just PVP)… and it will only get those if the game mechanics offer some sort of reward, some sort of incentive, some sort of positive feedback, for the majority of those players. If you only reward the big bad wolves, pretty soon you run out of sheep.


It’s good to read someone elses take on it, especially when that person is from a group that is often looked at negatively by everyone else not on those circles in high sec. your suggestions seem reasonable to me but then you openly admit that you try and push/break/bend the mechanics and because I am not really familiar with those mechanics I am not sure if your suggestions are more to make is easier for your own agenda.

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To be fair though.

Because of many of CCP changes it is forcing smaller group to band together which results the fact that the agressor is always at an advantage. The defender only gains the advantage when somebody bigger or stronger joins as an ally and actually helps.

I would prefer changes where you can run 3-4 man wardec groups again. And you had 3 -4 people square up against 20-100 man corps that would actually fight back and win. But that time has passed and the changes currently in place and coming will only force more people on the agressor side to band together.


I agree with a lot of what you said. My main point is that a lot of people don’t want healthy changes to wardecs that create a flourishing ecosystem. They are just so butthirt that they lobby for changes that they think will kill of the way we play the game.

Yeah I am basing my assumptions off of what I’ve experienced since Upwell structures have been a thing. I may be wrong about my assumptions and I sincerely hope so, but we will just see how it pans out.

Yeah this thread has been tame compared to my cross-post to Reddit. It’s a rollercoaster over there! I don’t mind people hating me or what I do, but I don’t like that someone advocates openly to want to remove part of the game. I understand that there’s a lot of emotions wrapped up into this.

I am honest with how I approach mechanics and such because I see nothing wrong with playing the game in which you are always pushing the limits of your capabilities as well as those mechanics. The things we do have been no secret to anyone especially CCP, so I don’t feel bad always trying to have an upper hand.

Hi Kane! The best example I can give is how VMG was hunted and baited before we merged into Pirat. The group that was hunting is took advantage of our lower numbers in the USTZ and setup traps and baits. We’re talking 3-4 pilots making a huge enough difference that it would stop our activity for the night, because we knew that if we tried to do what we normally do without adapting properly, we would feed.

I think that style of gameplay is still viable. You know as well as I what is involved with this kind of gameplay. It’s just that people don’t want hard or difficult. People don’t want to be challenged.

If everyone on the topic was as honest, we would have made much more progress over the years.

The issue I raise on all recommended changes is “Consider the worst possible exploiter of this with the most carefully adjusted setup to exploit the heck out of this system. Because that is guaranteed to happen.”

The other thing is, you can see (and you state), that you maximize the benefit of the PvP system to your taste, that you carefully ensure the odds are in your favor, that if you can’t swing the odds in your favor, you in effect have the option to not take that action.

That is the advantage of the aggressor, and that is the key issue on the part of all those who don’t want wardecs/pvp/to be targets. They do not get that same option. You are removing their ability to play the game their way, and forcing them to play it your way, to your satisfaction, and only when you have the upper hand. That is the asymmetric nature of aggressor/defender PvP in EVE.

When CCP works out a way to make being a defender at least partially as interesting and rewarding a state as being an aggressor, we’ll have something. Until then, all we have is wolves saying “We deserve to eat sheep, and you need to be a sheep for me. Because I want it that way.”


You raise good points. I’m just not sure CCP can really do anything to jumpstart people that are uninterested in PVP to do so. In all honesty they can remove themselves from the prospect of being involved or exposed to it by being immune to war decs.

The game is built around wolf and sheep interacting with each other, but I’m not saying that the sheep should always stay sheep. I’m saying that maybe enough sheep can come together and try to fight the wolf, which is something that I would find fun even though most people think I’m just interested in an easy kill.

Nice read, but I don’t like the ISK measure, it’s kind of complicated IMO. My proposal would be as an enhancement of CCP’s change:

  • Reduce the timers of the war structure to 2 or even 1, WH timing.
  • Everybody can put a bounty on the war structure, the aggressor has to contribute as well (fee depending on size of structure), it’s 50% paid to the fleet with highest damage on killday, and 50% to the defender.

I wouldn’t change the locators, it’s fine and works well as it is IMO (something I can benefit from my good standing with every faction :wink:


I like. Makes it less cumbersome to shoot at structures.

The only change I actually propose to Locator Agents is that they properly return results for pilots in citadels. Currently if you run a locate on someone that’s in a citadel, it’ll say that they are in space. That needs to change.

The only thing I’d petition for is that the watch list have a return on some level of functionality to spur more hunting and stretching of legs rather than being clumped up in the usual areas.

I believe the problem is two fold. WarDecs are meant to represent CONCORD looking the other way as two corporations go head to head for a purpose. Bribing them to look the other way for pirates isn’t terribly thematic. Political pressure would mount up on why CONCORD isn’t doing their jobs. The new Wardec system properly illustrates this by forcing both players to have something tangible as a target.

That said, CONCORD should not be so binary. Guerrilla warfare has it’s place and yes the empire/concord should intervene. However, sneezing on another player causing a massive police force to show up and CCP rules that you HAVE to go boom if they do… not a huge fan. Instead having security rankings come into play and a concord respond force with new engaging AI, that would respond like players would.

However, I fear that creating a less binary CONCORD system may require resources CCP may not care to invest. Their more likely to just say “go guerrilla warfair in non-high sec”.

Off toptic - I do also believe High Sec should be taxed at a MUCH higher rate. Entice players to get sick of paying empire taxes and look for higher returns.

Something along these lines is what I mean by “make it rewarding for the defender”. Or, the aggressor has to post a war bond, with a stated goal (destroy structure X, kill X of isk or ships or whatever, prevent Y mining activity). If the defender can end the war by some mechanic, while frustrating the aggressors goal, they get the war bond payout. The aggressor gets ‘the spoils of war’ plus whatever satisfaction they derive from being the big bads.

Basically, just give the defenders some reason and reward for participating, so all the cards aren’t in the hands of the aggressor.

That is too similar to why the Bounty system will forever suck. This enables an easy outlet for RMT to occur. In a perfect situation where we didn’t have RMT I would support this.

I think that’s just part of the story some players use to describe, and perhaps justify, the way they play.

There can’t be many players, even new to EVE, who don’t understand it’s a “free-fire zone”. I doubt there are any “natural sheep” that truly fit the wolf/sheep metaphor.

But there are definitely players, some who enjoy PvP, who don’t like playing at a permanent disadvantage.

I’m one: when I first tried EVE I had hundreds of hours of PvP combat behind me (yes really), and hundreds more non-combat hours playing in free-fire PvP zones where ganking was possible and quite common. But I’ve always found one-sided PvP boring, regardless of whether I’m on the stronger or the weaker side.

Of course it’s easy to avoid the boredom of being on the stronger side. I won’t be put on the weaker side too often though.

I stand by the structure based wardecs for now. Back in the day the worst problem with decs was small deccers in assault frigs/inties hunting miners and mission runners in large alliances and refusing all other fights. Defenders that had little pvp experience but were open to trying wanted to use T1 frigs and cruisers that could neither catch nor kill such targets. Some kind of objective in space is pretty important to my ultimate vision of decs.

This does not necessarily need to be a whq though. If we did ever get observatories with locators and watch lists, they would be THE structures for hunting players and by extension conducting wardecs. Disabling them would be an effective way of neutering hunters, making them valuable targets for defenders to knock out.

For that reason observatory arrays should be part of the wardeccing corp/alliance.

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Ad here: AVDOT is looking for all mercenary work in CNTZ.

Very good thoughts about the booshing ships in Empire space.

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