Blog Banter #30: “Sudden Useless Module Syndrome & the EMP Defensive Charge Whoozy-Whatsit Thingy

Forgive me Javix, for I have sinned. Its been, well, months since my last Blog Banter.

It isn’t that I’m anti-establishment (although I do still own a vintage 1994 Op-Ivy t-shirt. Fight the system man.), and its not that I don’t find them interesting at all; quite the opposite really. I’m always fairly bowled over by the creative nuances, the bold ideas, and the sheer out-pouring of words about Eve from, as Seismic refers to them, “anyone with a penchant for scribbling about internet spaceships”. Why I’ve been lax on participating in them, I have no idea, but I suppose  that makes me a somewhat terrible Blog Pack-er. Recognition of the problem is the first step though, so looks like we’re on the up.

Here’s Seismic Stan’s Blog Banter #30 intro:

“With the Winter expansion possibly being named ‘Crucible’, it certainly is a melting pot of refinements and tweaks aimed at making the EVE experience smoother and more wholesome. If the developers suddenly found themselves some spare resources and approached you for an additional feature to include before release, what single concept would you pitch them and how would you implement it?

For bonus points, the one thing lacking from this “patchwork” of iterations is a cohesive storyline to package “The Crucible” together. How could this expansion be marketed to potential new customers?”

 

I guess one of the reasons this particular Banter grabbed my attention was that I’ve had an on-going mental list of “If I Ruled Eve” for a while now. Admittedly, the title could use some tweaking, and if we’re being totally honest here, some of the things on said list are slightly one-sided and self-gratifying. For instance, I’m pretty sure that, spare resources or not, Dev teams will not be sinking any real time into things like “#27: make stupid shiny furr-bears shoot at Aiden more often” or “#11: make it so anyone flying a Noctis or a Marauder, anywhere, ever, is instantly red to and shoot-able by everyone who sees them”. I suppose “Eve Online: Now You’re All Fucked!” isn’t the catchiest of expansion names.

That aside, I do however have some a few gems that I’ve had bouncing around for a while, including this one:

 

“The E.M.P. Defensive Charge”

We fit our ships for a purpose. Even as noobs when we fit our Catalysts or Ospreys for “you know, mostly pvp/some exploration/hauler/hacking, and stuff”, its still built for a purpose, even if that purpose is to most certainly die horribly and be openly mocked on someone else’s killboard. But even when we become experts, and we know every fitting requirement of every mod how they will come together in a perfect jigsaw puzzle needed for our ships to fly like they ought to, there are times when one purpose turns into a different one, and you suddenly find yourself wearing a tuxedo to a pool party.

That’s the extreme, but what I’m also referring to is something that I call “sudden useless module syndrome“. Allow me to explain:

A fast tackler such as a Dramiel (well, until the expansion nerfs them out of their FOTM stranglehold. Cry moar) often times has two prop-mods fitted; the MWD for getting range fast, and then the AB to hold orbit without blowing up sig radius. Once they’ve got tackle and the gang warps in, that MWD is officially obsolete, and worse, its now a wasted mid-slot for what needs doing now.

I’m not sure I’m making a good point here, so here’s my idea. Say a brave and intrepid ninja is honorably and righteously defending both his honor and his ship from a brutalizing assault by an angry mission bear in a Navy Battleship. He’s docked up his battered Vigil, and returned with whatever it is he’s chosen to do battle with the bear with, in this case, a Rupture (this is a ninja with balls of solid titanium mind you). He’s fit his ship with an armor tank in the lows, some basic tackle and prop-mod in the limited mids, and filled his highs with the biggest guns he can cram on, and two missile launchers to fit out those annoying two non-turret highslots.

Now, his biggest concern at the outset of his engagement with his foe is his enemy’s drones. On a ship his size, they’re the spear to his heel, so webbing and shooting them down are his first priority. However, time spent shooting at buzzing drones is time not spent shooting at the growling, clawing mission bear, who is taking this time to either shoot back, call in help, or most likely, both. If only our hero had a way of vaporizing those little nuisances and getting to the killing! The quicker of you may shout out “smart bomb, dummy”, but besides being near impossible to fit on his ship without gimping both tank and gank, using a smartbomb in highsec is typically a bad idea waiting to happen.

Furthermore, even if our hero does manage to smartbomb every drone on the field to hell and somehow avoid hitting any sort of beacon or structure, if he’s kiting his foe, he’s now left with a dud of a high-slot; a worthless module that now isn’t contributing to the cause.

What I propose is something between an E.M.P. (as in “Electromagnetic Pulse” in the real world, not the damage type in-game) and a bomb that usable in any security system, much like a smartbomb. Fitting this “EMP Bomb” would require a specific rig that would reconfigure the ship it was attached to with an additional low slot, yet that rig would also BE that extra slot.

The purpose of this rig/slot? A limited, one-time use pulse weapon, to be used a defensive means without compromising offensive capabilities. Think of it as a shield/armor hardener that emits a blast. While in combat, the pilot of a ship fitted with this rig/module would be able to fire off this weapon ONCE, and only if he had the “charge” in his cargohold. The blast radius would be large, and highly damaging.

So what about drawbacks? For one, there’s the “charge” required to fire it off. Size not being the issue, the sheer instability of this “bottled power” means that only one charge would be allowed in a cargohold at once, and the same instability would make it far too dangerous to be ejected into a jet-can. Also, the power required by the ship to fire this defensive weapon would severely gimp its capabilities for 30 seconds following the blast. Remember Morpheus in The Matix firing off that EMP in that ship/submarine/hovercraftthingy when the spider-drone/terminators with tentacles things were trying to get them? It’d be sort of like that. Maybe guns won’t cycle for 20 seconds, or any active hardeners turn off. Also, defensive or not, this would be an AOE weapon, and hitting anything that wasn’t aggressed to you would incur the consequences.

=====

In reading everything above down to this point, I’m realizing that this more and more resembled, well, a smartbomb, something I tried to avoid while writing this hair-brained idea. The goal though here would be to make pvp engagements more unpredictable, something I think CCP has completely in mind with “Crucible” and its new tier 3 gank ships of doom.

The bonus points, Stan, I’ll have to pass on for now.

 

o7,

-Aiden

 

Freebooted – Blog Banter 30: The Melting Pot
Inner Sanctum of the Ninveah – Blog Banter: Crucible
Eveoganda – Blog Banter 30: Stalemate Unleashed
Sand, Cider, and Spaceships – Blog Banter 30: The Melting Pot
Shall We Not Revenge? – Dreams of Control
Beyond Space – CCP’s Big Massive Test

 

-More BB30 links forthcoming-

 

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~ by Aiden Mourn on November 15, 2011.

10 Responses to “Blog Banter #30: “Sudden Useless Module Syndrome & the EMP Defensive Charge Whoozy-Whatsit Thingy”

  1. I think you’re onto something in there: I love the idea of using a rig slot to create an extra fitting slot, even if it has limitations. It’s brilliant. Almost like a T3 rig that say grants you an additional low slot that can only be used for armour modules, or an additional mid-slot that can only be used for propulsion.

    It’d create more fitting possibilities but still remain within the PG/CPU resource restrictions of the ship.

    Hmm, thinkums.

  2. I approve of this product and/or service.

    Really good idea that, I like it!

  3. Very cool idea. I’ve always thought about an EMP bomb, but it would take a lot of thought to make it tough to exploit. I think the sister idea of a special rig that allows you to add either an extra rig, or high/med/low slot would also be cool. That would require even more thought though because Eve players are clever monkeys, and in short order someone would come up with a clever combination of an extra slot that would make an already strong ship, insane.

  4. Massive AOE is op. lol. That said, it’d sure make things interesting. Biggest downside I see to this particular idea is when applied to fleets. the effect would resemble an organized bombing fleet bombing, well, another fleet, laying waste to everything.

    Upside of this module: that’s alot of t2 wrecks I can salvage for intact armor plates. Cha-ching.

  5. ….

    Why do i have sudden images of 10 cheap ass ships equiped with this and nothing like this warping onto a mining gang and blowing them all simultaneously- miningbear tears to follow?

    A massively buffed smartbomb? you might have just said
    “Hey i love those guys in disco battleships and blow as many frigates/shuttles/pods/noobships/industrials in hisec as possible- so let’s give them a massively OP single shot smartbomb to make it easier!”

    I agree with this motion 😀

    • Hey, I thought it was MY job to figure out how to exploit and bastardize other-wise intended game mechanics! Agreed though, while this has the potential for serious abuse, it would at least be hilarious abuse. Plus, I still think thats exactly what CCP is going for with Crucible. There’s been talk of pre-release nerfs to the tier 3 BCs, but unless they knock down some serious fitting ability with the Tornado and the Talos, we’re going to see roaming suicide death squads of those things everywhere.

      • maybe the Talos…. suicide ganking a Tornado seems like a criminal waste to me…. i love it too much to see it become an alpha boat… bring on the 800mm ACs

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