Saturday, December 31, 2011

Happy New Year!

Well, its that time everyone! 2011 is almost done. I think I'll write a year-in-review post in a bit, but just wanted to explain the recent lack of activity. Its a combination of a lot of family time around the holidays, which is always... interesting, and also the fact that I got Skyrim for Christmas \o/. And wow, I didn't realize what I was in for with the latter. Everyone told me it was good, but its certainly exceeded expectations. I've been absolutely hooked running around as a High Elf in that game.

Anyway, everything should start to normalize in the coming days after the New Year, but probably not until closer to the 3rd or 4th of January realistically. I'm heading up to Manhattan for NYE tonight, but just wanted to wish all of you denizens of New Eden a Happy New Year in addition to a belated Merry Christmas! See you next year!

Friday, December 23, 2011

Redesigning the Eagle -- A New Way of Thinking

Okay, so here's my crack at the Redesigning the Eagle Contest as sponsored by Kirith Kodachi. The basic premise is here below:

"The goal is to produce a description of how you would change the Eagle (and/or all of the Heavy Assault Cruiser class) to make it viable in the new Crucible age AS WELL AS one or more images of a hull redesign for the Moa/Eagle/Gila/Onyx ships very much like how the Scoprion and Maller have been completely redone.."

Here are my thoughts. Right now, clearly the Eagle is horrendous. Currently, it has a double bonus for range, a bonus for damage, and a bonus for shield tanking. It is still in a pretty bad state right now though. Even with the hybrid boost, the Eagle is not on par with other HACs. I used PyFA to get a look at its current state post-buff. Its currently possible to get a rack of 250mm rails and a pretty respectable shield tank. With Antimatter loaded, it hits 40.5 + 15 for 310 DPS and with the long range T2 ammo, Spike, it goes 130 + 15 for 207 DPS.

The numbers are meaningless without some comparison though. Here's the Muninn: 29.2 + 35.9 at 347 DPS with EMP and 105 + 35.9 at 232 DPS with T2 Tremor. And a sniper-fit Zealot: 29.2 + 16.4 at 436 DPS with Multifrequency and 105 + 16.4 at 290 DPS with Aurora.

Missing your undergrad calc class yet? The Eagle wins in range, but not DPS. Its also the slowest by about 300 m/s. Ouch. So it has range, but it can't maintain it? Seems like a pretty big issue.

So let's look at the state of the union then. The Eagle is the worst in its role as a sniper HAC, excelling only in range, which it can't maintain. Now we have Tier 3 BC's, and they can hit from farther range, run faster, and hit harder. Oh, and by the way, they're about a third of the cost and can be fully insured. Are you sold on the Eagle yet?

Rixx Javix wrote a little while ago about how a few HACs are "dead" after the release of Tier 3 BC's and a few other causes. For the most part, I think he's right to some extent. Especially on a cost/benefit scale, there are a lot of other options out there that fulfill the role that HACs used to have. The key is making HACs different and relevant. I don't think the Vaga has been outdone yet due to its speed. The Deimos is great close range brawler that might still be viable, and the Ishtar is certainly still a unique ship in that its a versatile drone boat. This is what the Eagle needs. It needs a role that no other ship in the game has right now.

Here's the proposal. Its not a higher DPS sniper. We've already got the Naga and the rest of the crew to do that, and the current mechanics with on grid probing/warp-to's makes pure snipers a tough place to be anyway. I'm also not suggesting a blaster Eagle. It will always be outpaced by the Deimos, among other ships.

My thought is its gotta be different. My thought is a torpedo Eagle. The only viable torp ships right now are bombers, the Phoon, and the Golem (pretty much PVE only). Add the Eagle to this list by bonusing it similar to bombers right now.

Caldari Cruiser Bonus:
20% bonus to torpedo velocity and flight time per level
5% bonus to shield resistances per level

Heavy Assault Ship Skill Bonus:
15% bonus to torpedo damage per level
5% bonus to target painter effectiveness per level

 The key to this ship, as I see it, is giving it a distinct role that gives this Heavy Assault Cruiser strong capabilities without making more ships obsolete. In this torp Eagle, I think we've achieved that. Let's keep the same slot layout as the current Eagle. Change all the turret hardpoints to missile bays, giving the Torpedo appropriate grid for Siege Missile Launcher II's. This gives the Eagle significantly more damage than Stealth Bombers can do, and yet it still has a solid tank. It must give up one of these slots for a TP if one so chooses, or you could pair up with a Huginn. Note, the bonus is less than the Huginn, giving the Minmatar Recon Ship a decided advantage in the EWAR field. I'm thinking something along the lines of the following:

High Slots
Siege Missile Launcher II (x5)
Small Energy Neutralizer

Medium Slots
Y-T8 Overcharged Hydrocarbon Microwarpdrive
Phased Weapon Navigation Array Generation Extron
Invulnerability Field II
Photon Scattering Field II
Large Shield Extender II

Low Slots
Ballistic Control Unit II (x3)
Power Diagnostic Unit II

Medium Core Defence Field Extender I (x2)

This ship would have decided advantages and disadvantages. On the pro side, it should be able to put out quite a bit of DPS at an impressive range. It would not be up to the level of snipers, but with Javelin torpedoes, it could get out pretty far (Bombers loaded with Javelin already get ~75km without rig additions). This ship could be great for a POS bash (woohoo just what everyone wanted!). On the downside, it could be a bit susceptible to smaller ships that can signature tank the torpedoes. Target Painters will be essential for this ship to do well in fights below its weight class.

Overall its an interesting, unconventional way to look the Eagle. Caldari ships do not (and in my opinion, should not) exceed Gallente ships in Blaster technology. With the Naga, other Tier 3 BC's, and current probing mechanics, dedicated sniper platforms are a tough sell as well. My proposed changes give the Eagle an interesting ability to strike hard at a variety of ranges so long as its target is large or well painted. It provides a ship role that New Eden does not have yet today.

[Note: I'm trying to work out a new design for the Eagle, but my drawing skills are horrendous. I'll try to get something worked out. If not, I'll hit up the CAD lab when I get back to school :)   ]

-- Rollins

Flight of a Thousand Rifters -- Update!

So I logged in and saw that I had a bit more money than expected. I checked my journal and found the following.

Cool beans. Apparently I got 4th place in Marlona Sky's Flight of a Thousand Rifters. I forgot it came down to her points system, not just raw damage on the Dreadnaught. Awesome. Never hurts to have an extra 300M isk, and I'm pretty happy to finish that high too! The official final standings are posted here in Marlona Sky's thread. I'd like to put out an even BIGGER thanks to Marlona, especially now that I'm in the payout!

-- Rollins

Thursday, December 22, 2011

BB 31: The Game Outside Eve Online

The 31st Blog Banter is out and the topic is an Eve Community Review. This also happens to be my first crack at a BB \o/  Its fun to be an active part of the action as opposed to just the regular reader. 

"As any games journalist would probably tell you, a true and complete review of a Massively Multiplayer Online game is impossible. MMOs are vast, forever evolving entities with too much content for a single reviewer to produce a fair and accurate review. However, a collection of dedicated bloggers and EVE players (past and present) with a wide range of experience in various aspects of the game might be able to pull it off.

This special 'End of Year' Blog Banter edition aims to be a crowd-sourced game review. Using your gaming knowledge and experience, join the community in writing a fair and qualified review of EVE Online: Crucible. This can be presented in any manner of your choosing, but will ideally include some kind of scoring system.

With each Blog Banter participant reviewing the areas of EVE Online in which they specialise, the result should be a Metacritic-esque and accurate review by the people who know best."

 Eve Online. Where to start? I know where I started. I began playing Eve at an internship almost three years ago, just after Apocrypha was released. Its been my first and only MMO, and I still remember asking, "So, how do you win at Eve?" I was of course greeted with a bit of a laugh, and in hind sight, I definitely deserved it. "Winning at Eve" is really more of a meme than an actual objective at this point. But as I talked to the guys at work, I could see their eyes light up about how excited they were about this game. They talked about all of the possibilities and all of the roles you could play. They showed me a couple diagrams online to give me the idea. First was all the ships of New Eden:

I didn't realize I'd be flying the barely visible ones..

So at this point I was interested to say the least. We spent the rest of the afternoon talking about it, and I knew I had to at least give it shot. Just before I headed home that day, they showed me this graphic too, which I'm sure we've all seen by now. Okay, a little intimidated, but nothing I couldn't overcome.

Not too far from the truth
I spent hours that first weekend flying around in a freaking Velator. I couldn't wait til I had the funds for that 26,000 isk Atron. I was hooked though. So I kept playing, and after a while, my friends from the internship slowly faded out of Eve. I spent a while (way too long) running missions aimlessly. Its only really been recently that I've been getting into pvp legitimately, and I guess I'm still a bit of a noob in that respect, despite that fact that I'm about to cross 50M SP.

Its been a long ride, and its mostly been a blast. I think there were a few things that CCP and my friends didn't initially tell me about though. First of all, no one ever told me how much time I'd spend doing things other than flying internet spaceships. I've spent countless hours managing POS's, parsing through market windows for trade and jumping from system to system for any other reason. Eve can often be more of a job than a game. 

The second thing that no one told me about Eve was that I'd spend so much time out of game talking, thinking and strategizing about Eve. I've spent an absolutely stupid amount of time in applications like EFT and Evemon. Why do I do it? Because its so damn interesting. Why did I listen to hours of Eve podcasts on the way home to my Dad's house this Christmas? Same reason. Theory-crafting about Eve is a beautiful thing. How can I beat this fleet composition? Where will they move next? How can implants/boosters/etc give me the edge I need? All of this doesn't even scratch the surface of inter-alliance politics and null sec in general. Its everything. I've probably spent even more time out of game thinking and planning about Eve than I've played. 

What all of this comes down to is simple. CCP got it right when they said Eve is real. I wasn't too thrilled with their promotional campaign at the time due to the state of Incarna, but they were right. Eve is a great game, but its so much more. Look at media like the Clarion Call or Clear Skies series. Eve is virtual blood, sweat, and tears. Eve is real.

So my review of Eve? Its a pretty solid game. Its certainly still a work in progress, and Crucible has been a fantastic step in that direction. At the end of the day, its so much more though. Its a full immersive simulation in an alternate universe, and it can be so addictive it should come with a warning label. That's the Eve that I know.

-- Rollins

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Macabre Votum

As of earlier this evening, I am officially a member of Macabre Votum and Against ALL Authorities. This decision has been quite a while in the making, as I've been talking with a few good corps about possibilities. So far, I've gotta say I think I made the right choice.

The big conflict in trying to decide on a corporation was that I wanted small gang PVP but also an active corporation. A few of the corps that I was looking into had great stats and a bunch of legit guys, but just not enough activity for my liking. I wanted to join a corp with the intent on flying as a part of fleets, not just soloing under a different corp banner.

So in the end, I chose MV because they're a group of experienced pilots that always have gangs going out. Of course I can still solo or grab a few guys and take a small gang out, but its nice to have the consistent activity. -A- seems to be a good fit as well. I'm not one who needs sov to be happy, but its certainly not a bad thing. I have plenty of isk, and I don't get off to having more space-territory than anyone else. I do like to have stable resources and logistics though, and that certainly comes with established territory.

After being officially accepted, I decided to make the long trek down to our current base of operations. I grabbed an clone without implants, fitted up a Cheetah in Amarr for mobility and tore through Kerberz into HED-GP, an infamous high-null connection known for its violence. It turns out this first jump into null was the closest I ever came to getting caught, with a pretty established gate camp of Sabres, Vagabonds and Cynabals. Cloak and burn (almost) never fails though, and I got away. Besides a couple of roaming gangs, I didn't see much action again until I hit GE-8JV, which is currently owned by PL. They didn't offer too much trouble though, and I pretty much shot right through creating my bookmarks and warping away.

It was a night of no real action, yet some significant achievement. I'm all ready to go with MV. I just need to get some ships together and fit and I should be good to go. Its certainly going to be an interesting winter.

-- Rollins

Flight of a Thousand Rifters

So through the grapevine, I caught wind of Marlona Sky's Flight of a Thousand Rifters event (Thanks Kirith for promoting that one). Here's the event description from her blog post:

"On 2011.12.17 (December 17th, 2011) at precisely 19:00 GMT (game time) I will undock from:

AttentionAttentionAttention EVENT LOCATION AttentionAttentionAttention
Vlillirier IV - Moon 13 - Wiyrkomi Corporation Warehouse

I will be sieging a station with Intigo, my Moros dreadnought. It has been irrelevant for a good couple years and it is high time it dies of a fiery death explosion.
I want to give players a change to do some damage and win some prizes so I will be running a player event to destroy my dreadnought. There are a few rules to follow for you to be eligible for prizes. The top three players with the most points gained with a frigate or destroyer class ship will each win one of three prizes. The player leaving the final blow on my Moros or the final blow on my capsule will each receive a special prize."

(Full Eve-O post:

I'd never really done any player events besides in-house RvB things, so I decided I may as well give this a go. I figured worst case scenario, I was still on a Moros mail, so let's give it a shot.

I fitted up a couple Catalysts, since the post-Crucible hybrid buff makes for some ridiculous Catalysts. Basically the thought process was total glass-cannon approach. I was just trying to whore on the mail and get enough damage to get in the prizes. So this is what I came up with for a pure DPS Catalyst.

[Catalyst, Marlona Sky Contest]
Magnetic Field Stabilizer II
Magnetic Field Stabilizer II
Tracking Enhancer II

Catalyzed Cold-Gas I Arcjet Thrusters
Warp Scrambler II

Light Ion Blaster II, Caldari Navy Antimatter Charge S
Light Ion Blaster II, Caldari Navy Antimatter Charge S
Light Ion Blaster II, Caldari Navy Antimatter Charge S
Light Ion Blaster II, Caldari Navy Antimatter Charge S
Light Ion Blaster II, Caldari Navy Antimatter Charge S
Light Ion Blaster II, Caldari Navy Antimatter Charge S
Light Ion Blaster II, Caldari Navy Antimatter Charge S
Light Ion Blaster II, Caldari Navy Antimatter Charge S

Small Hybrid Collision Accelerator I
Small Hybrid Ambit Extension I
Small Ancillary Current Router I

So I fit up a few of these, moved them out to Orvolle (3 jumps from Vlillirier), and hit the road. I entered local and the first thing coming across the airwaves was Marlona saying, "2 MINUTES LEFT." Perfect timing. I warped to Planet IV at 100km and aligned to the station. When I saw the dreadnaught on scan, I warped to the Wiyrkomi Station, turned on the MWD and locked up Marlona. All was going to plan.

The Great Beast

Then a Rifter from Red Federation locked me up and started shooting me. This was less than two minutes in, and I wasn't about to have to go reship that early. So I locked him up and started shooting. Small Blasters --> Yes. The eight Light Ion Blasters were ripping through this Rifter, and he hadn't touched my armor yet. I was still orbiting Marlona and he tried to run, so I turned on the MWD and caught up. The Rifter was AB fit, so he didn't stand a chance against my speed and damage. He exploded quickly once I caught up again.

So back to Marlona Sky's Moros. It was a bit of a slow process, and no one was really attacking each other for fear of station guns, which pretty much instapop small ships. Marlona Sky goes into structure at about 15 minutes in, and as she's creeping down, I overload my guns. All of the sudden, a Red Taranis, who has been well-behaved this whole time, engages me. I couldn't find his name quickly enough on the overview, and the glass cannon Catalyst goes boom at about the same time as the Moros.

Local explodes with questions of who got the mail. I'm pretty damn curious myself, as prizes were totalling over 4 billion in isk. I look on the mail when it is finally posted, and I was the 10th highest damage dealer. Top 7 got prizes :(  Looks like I just missed out. I look at the mail and there are bombers on there. Damn, for some reason I thought it was only T1 frigs and dessys. My fault.

I have to wonder if my getting drawn off the Moros to fight that Rifter and my premature death from the Taranis cost me a spot in the top 7. Oh well, to finish in the top 10 out of 153 on the killmail is not too bad at all. In fact I'd say its pretty damn good.

Regardless, this event was awesome. I had a blast with the theory crafting and the event itself. A special thanks obviously goes to Marlona Sky for providing us the fun. It was an awesome turn out, and looking at Dotlan, Vlillirier is the second bloodest lowsec system right now \o/. A great time all around.

-- Rollins

Friday, December 16, 2011

Poppin' Pods

I'm a bad boy.

Easy Targets -- Sidenote: How good does Sinq Laison Look?

I've had the urge for a few weeks now to suicide gank someone's pod. I wasn't going to worry about scanning them down for high value implants or anything (actually, can you scan down a pod's implants? I'll have to check), but I just wanted to pop one. I had an embarrassingly high sec status from my days as a carebear, and I wanted to fix it. So I did.

So what was I to go with? Only one good choice for a Minmatar pilot (sorry to betray my Gallente roots): a Thrasher. I was trying to make the decision between Autocannons and Arties for a little while though. Obviously Arties have significantly higher alpha, but I thought I could get 2-4 shots off with the AC's. I opted for the AC's since pods have such miniscule tank to begin with. So here we go.

[Thrasher, Poppin' Pods (AC's)]
Gyrostabilizer I
Gyrostabilizer I

Catalyzed Cold-Gas I Arcjet Thrusters
Tracking Computer I, Tracking Speed
Tracking Computer I, Tracking Speed

150mm Light AutoCannon I, Republic Fleet EMP S
150mm Light AutoCannon I, Republic Fleet EMP S
150mm Light AutoCannon I, Republic Fleet EMP S
150mm Light AutoCannon I, Republic Fleet EMP S
150mm Light AutoCannon I, Republic Fleet EMP S
150mm Light AutoCannon I, Republic Fleet EMP S
150mm Light AutoCannon I, Republic Fleet EMP S
[empty high slot]

[empty rig slot]
[empty rig slot]
[empty rig slot]

 It had everything I needed. Speed to close if necessary, and then enough damage to strike quickly before the CONCORDOKKEN.

No problems in the execution. It was almost anti-climactic when he popped so quickly. I got two shots off before the sentries took me out hard. Its kind of a rush. I literally almost fit up an Arty Thrasher to go pop noobs. Is that wrong? I may still have to this weekend. Watch out noobs everywhere!

Other than that, my Eve life is returning to normal due to my real life settling down. Finals week is over, which means one month full of way too much Eve is ahead (if there is such a thing as too much Eve of course). TFirish3 should be hopping into the new corporation this weekend, so I'll be sure to update on that as it becomes finalized. Tommy Rollins will start becoming active in RvB as TF leaves, and he'll have Thermodynamics by mid-week, at which point he should be good to go. Looking forward to flying with Rollins. Its always fun to train up a new character and see how it goes.

Not a bad start to Christmas break.

-- Rollins

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Finals Slowdown

Well, Eve time has been a bit slow recently. I'm going through finals week, which isn't too terrible, but it does mean a lot less play time. Anyway, here's a quick update on what's been going on.

One thing I always try to find time for is to update market orders on my trade alt. Let's say Crucible has been a bit profitable in that respect. Let's say it smashed my single week trade records -- twice. Its nice to see the wallet grow by over 1 billion per week with minimal work to update orders. I think its pretty clear a significant number of players resubbed. Hopefully we'll see that hold over the next few months (Ball is in your court CCP).

Not too terrible, huh?
 By the way, for any budding traders, the above app is an iPhone app called EVE Trader (brilliant name, I know), and its fantastic. I can't recommend it highly enough for anyone trading in Eve. Supports multiple characters, shows transactions and calculates reports. I love it.

Anyway, as I said above, in game time has been a little slow. The corp search continues for TFirish3, with some promising offers so far (could be headed to Curse, not to ruin any surprises). Other than that, just waiting it out til this weekend when I can undock again for real. Nothing too flashy for right now, but this winter break should be a blast.


Sunday, December 4, 2011

Weekend Review 12/4

I've decided I'll start doing a Weekend Review given that I'd like to have a regular series of posts and I'm primarily a weekend player. Fairly straight forward, huh?

Anyway, not a bad weekend in Eve, a bit uneventful. Friday was mostly playing station games, logging off 5-2, which is never too bad. I lost a Rifter and a Punisher before deciding to bring out the Drake. Saturday was a similar story, fleeting up and catching a few kills before dying in a fire courtesy of 18 red pilots.

I think that's one of the most frustrating things about RVB: the fleet warfare is evenly matched to the point where its a push, and without ECM or Logi's there's nothing really to tip the scales. That's why I've been pushing to get some 1v1's recently, although I don't arrange them. Arranged 1v1's are for sissies. I've been trying to get a decent fight in the Enyo since Crucible dropped last week, but it can be tough to pick off a lone guy in RVB sometimes. Its not for lack of effort though

My Enyo fit is pretty standard -- lots of DPS, armor tank and a small neut. Pre-Crucible, it has DPS just short of 300 before overheating. With the blaster buff (to include tracking, and therefore effective DPS), it should be an absolute beast. It is a little bit on the slow side, but I think if it gets within scram range, it should be good to go. Looking forward to testing it out when I find a good target.

I also picked up a Vagabond in Jita this weekend. I was looking at the numbers in EFT (Yes, I am an EFT whore. No, I don't think battles are fought in the fitting window.) and a Vaga loaded with Barrage looks like too much fun not to try. Similar situation as the Enyo though -- I don't want to lose it in a fleet battle where I'll get insta-primaried for flying something shiny. 

Speaking of Jita by the way, I have a very strong urge to suicide gank someone's pod just to see what implants they have on the killmail. I've been dying to get this sec status down. Arty Thrasher, coming right up.

Anyway, I'm feeling the null sec bug start to bite me. I'm going to keep Tommy Rollins in RVB, but I think I'm taking TFirish3 out into the wild. RVB is great, but I'm looking for the real deal. I want small gang PVP for the moment. Blobs are boring, and I'm not too interested in hitting up Sov warfare at the moment. Smashing towers just doesn't do it for me. I'm thinking Syndicate though; it just kind of feels like home. I was actually in touch with a corp today about potentially joining up with them. Watch this space over the next couple weeks; I'm thinking I'll make the change pretty soon.


Thursday, December 1, 2011

Burn New Eden

“december summit agenda: destroy ALL the outposts. burn the galaxy to ash. nothing that exists should be immune to destruction #tweetfleet
     -- @TheMittani, CSM Chair

"Because he thought it was good sport. Because some men aren't looking for anything logical, like money. They can't be bought, bullied, reasoned or negotiated with. Some men just want to watch the world burn." 
     -- Alfred Pennyworth, "The Dark Knight"

The Mittani: out of game

Mittani is intriguing. Love him or hate him, its a fact. Now of course CCP is under no obligation to follow through on this one, but let's think about the implications. First of all, Outposts would have to have incredibly high HP, or else they'd become extinct. I'd also presume that you'd have to destroy all the Sov structures around it first before it becomes vulnerable. Regardless, it makes everything a bit more interesting than a POS bash. Are ships going to drop when you destroy it? ALL of the ships in the Outpost? Even if they don't, if CCP finds a way to make killmails and incorporate all the ships destroyed, these things will go down and FAST.

This puts a whole new spin on 0.0 warfare if these changes go through. It essentially creates the same situation with Stations as we have with podding: "Give us 100 Billion isk or we blow up the station." Pandemic Legion will have an absolute field day with this. All of those supercaps that were put on ice (maybe?) from Crucible will be right back in play, destroying your assets one station at a time. I love it. Its all of the best (see: worst) parts of Eve. Don't feel like participating in that CTA? Okay, enjoy waking up in high sec, no clone, tens of ships all gone. Beautiful.

This will change null sec, no doubt. It gives motivation beyond the typical sovereignty reasons. It gives pilots a reason to undock that isn't motivated by money or normal PVP. New Eden will Burn.

-- Rollins

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Crucible: Thoughts

Official Eve Crucible Trailer

Well I've gotta say, Crucible seems to have had an incredibly warm reception, and I can see why. As a player who started in Apocrypha, I didn't realize how incredible that expansion was. T3's and Wormholes -- wow. I remember my thoughts about each expansion, and I've never been as excited as I have been for Crucible (although removing learning skills with Incursion was pretty nice).

To begin -- HYBRIDS. I've been primarily a Gallente pilot for quite a while, and its freaking fantastic to see a boost for them. For a long time, Gallente has had the closest range, highest damage, but most of their ships are relatively slow, and they lack the resist bonused ships that Caldari and Amarr have. I haven't had a chance to test out the new bonuses yet (increased damage and tracking for both blasters and rails), but I'm optimistic.

Tier 3 Battlecruisers are another awesome feature of the expansion. These glass cannons, or pocket-battleships as Kirith Kodachi is calling them, are intriguing to say the least. They seem to be a potentially potent anti-capital weapon with the new fighter bomber balancing. The Tr 3 BC's also give us a huge new ganking toy. I'm looking at you, Mittani (PS: Big fan of the Ice Interdiction. Not a fan as someone who needs it for his Thanatos, but I love the idea). I'll definitely pick some of these up as prices come down (200m+ for a BC? No thanks).

I am a little disappointed by the Dramiel nerf, but I understand it. All in all, it doesn't look too bad (I'm pretty sure I can still fit a dual-prop, 150mm AC/Rocket Dram with some meta 4 gear, but I haven't run the numbers yet). I was trying to go out and lose these before the patch, but I just couldn't lose one ;)

Overall, there are a ton of little features in this expansion, and all of them together should make this a great one. I'm going to pick up an Enyo at Jita tonight and see if I can undock sometime tomorrow to test out this blaster balance. Enjoy the new expansion, and here's to CCP doing more like this one in the future!

-- Rollins

The New Eden Experience: An Introduction

Hello World. Or... well, maybe Universe..

I'm your brand new host, Tommy Rollins. I've been in Eve for over two and half years now (its the whole "long time listener, first time caller" deal), but just starting to really come into my own. Let me give you a quick background about me.

I started in June 2009 (wow, quite a while ago) playing with some friends from work. I was a TOTAL carebear for a few years, and I'm finally starting to come around to the darker side of things. My first character is TFirish3 (didn't realize people used actual "names" in MMOs at the time), and he's well specialized in Gallente/Minmatar subcaps. My other primary character is Tommy Rollins, who's just getting started in RVB as a Rifter pilot.

I first started reading Eve blogs in a Solid Mechanics class in Undergrad, and I've been hooked ever since. The urge to become a member of that community has been nagging at me for a while now, so I figured I'd finally give it a go. Look forward to a post regarding the new Crucible expansion later today.

-- Rollins