19 Mar 2014

Fight Like A Brave

I've never quite managed to understand the mindset of pilots who habitually use link-alts in a 1v1 frigate fight environment, it's most definitely an alien concept to me. Maybe I'm just odd, or too hardcore and masochistic to feel I need those extra numbers on my side, I dunno. Now I can just about admit that okay those boosts are fine if you're one heroic mad bastard solo duder taking on a pack of let's say 5 or 6 mutant F1 pressing attack zombies. Or even a gang of 3 or 4 'elite' warriors banding together with boosts as they slay a gang of multiple hostile things turning red in orchestrated regimented barrel rolling high-octane combat situations.

It's just that pro who has his links switched on as soon as you land on his plex gate. That must win attitude and the guy who never returns your 'gf', that guy who sits in one system all day long with his Astarte chained to the undock. Hmm, those kind of people are cut from a different cloth. Once you suss out these bad eggs they might as well not exist in the game world. They get fight-blocked. That Breacher in the plex might as well be a rubber dinghy once that Tengu appears on scan.

Word of mouth is a valuable tool in the frig-jock circles and no doubt, you're most certainly not getting a fight from those who prefer their vanilla t1 frig fights once they know you use links in a frig-v-frig shoot out.

But enough of me moaning about links. I don't want links to be removed from the game or placed on a grid. That wouldn't help matters at all. Links as they are are cool(ish), they're just abused by people who aren't very good at this game. Okay I am still moaning, enough finger-pointing. Stop it now, they'll get mad.

What if there was a different way of shaking up the way links are used. What if there was a module or modules that enabled the boosts projected to be deflected and/or scrambled? Now, before I go on I hope that you are sitting comfortably and I request that you open up your mind for a few moments.

Okay, let's proceed.

The first module would be a mid-slot active module that works the same way as a tracking disruptor would. You suspect someone is using a link alt in your honorable combat duel then you switch on the EGO BOOST PLUS 500 WARLORD SCRAMBLER, change your script to the BOOSTING 'SMOKE' DISRUPTION SCRIPT or PROJECTED EFFECTS ERECTILE DYSFUNCTIONALIZER and you in effect scramble the signal sent from the link ship and the links are reduced significantly on the boosted combat ship. Nothing too drastic, shall we go with say a reducer of 90%? Yes, we will. The 10% should balance the fight up for them and give them that slight edge they crave and will need to make a good go of the fight. We wouldn't want it to be an even fight, oh no.

Now for the king of the anti-boost modules. I present to you the low-slot passive WARFARE BOOST DEFLECTOR SHIELD BATTERY. Once fitted to a ship, any boosts that a targeted ship receives during combat will be automatically transferred to YOUR ship (or shared out among many targets if not in a 1v1 situation), rendering the links useless for the guy with the link-alt but a welcome addition to the stats of the guy(s) who has never used boosts before. A total flip reverse situation like a finger slipping through the toilet paper at the wrong moment.

I know that these will need some tweeking but can you imagine the potential? The shake up that this would bring to combat. This would really put the cat among the pigeons. I am excited just to think of the potential mischief and levelling of the playing field this would potentially bring.

Would you think twice about using your links if such modules existed?



  1. 'A total flip reverse situation like a finger slipping through the toilet paper at the wrong moment'

    Man I just spat coffee!

    I like the idea of reducing link effectiveness on a single ship that would really piss of some of the 'leet pvper's' How about swapping ECM over from breaking locks to breaking links boosts?!

  2. As somebody who recently went to the 'dark side' let me chime in :)

    Links are a two headed beast, I don't use them vs. noble space warriors when I know for a fact that's what I'm dealing with.
    But since I live in Agoze and all the other locals have links, well easiest way to deal with that is have your own. Sure I could go live in some periphery system and not have to do that but then I'm hurting the number of fights I can have.

    As you say news spreads fast, and while I may promise not to use them I've noticed most solo pilots have stopped engaging me all together (including most of SKRMR :P), which is fine -better safe then sorry, I understand-, it's the price I pay for being able to engage outnumbered, fight the locals and deal with the almost inevitable 'mini local spike' some corps seem to cause (looking at you ST-FR). Or if you happen to fly td condors or crows, I'll use links too, cause fuck you.

    That said I lost 79 ship last month, 50 so far this month, if anything links make me *less* risk averse as they greatly enhance the number of things I can engage. So from this side of the argument I'm giving up the occasional solo brawl with a Bushido space warrior in order to gain main times that number of fights vs. greater numbers or other link users (which vastly outnumber the samurai in FW lowsec these days). If the price of having near non-stop fights is my 'honourable reputation' well then my reputation be damned cause it's worth it I'm afraid :P



  3. As someone who used skirmish links in Gusandall all the damn time during the golden age of the 2/10 cause it was the only way to catch the noble plex farmer, the links were used only to give me the ability to catch folks who were intent on running away or kiting, and to be honest, I got a lot of flack from it by so called honourable cowards. (Sure I'm justifying my use of links, I was a brawler who specialized in catching kiters)

    I've even been accused of links when it's just me and them in system, some folk just can't handle losing.

    Gone are the days of honourable 1v1s at safespots, too many jackasses ruined that for us, but that was one thing I always stood by.

    I don't mind if folk use links against me, has happened many times, but I never ran to the forums about it or cried on killboards like so many of them have done, I just gf and get on with my day

    My secondary argument for using my links is this, I'm a pirate first and foremost, I'm out to make ISK from the misfortune of others, I can't do that if they're faster than me or there are more of them. I still get hatemail comments from someone I must have killed on my blog about links, after all this time they're still so bitter.

    Roaming Minmatar faction warfare recently it's very rare to see just one person, most are in a small or even large gang with heir own links and the loners are more likely to cloak than fight. I don't drag my links with me, I'm not that good that I can dual box like that, but if someone wants a honourable 1v1 all hey need to do is form fleet and create a safespot and we do it the old fashioned way.

    Moving links on grid, sure, go for it, create mods that change up the game, by all means... In the end we must all adapt to changes, much like the days when everyone rolled with Faclon alts , you learn who to fight and who to avoid.
    I learnt this lesson early on with Rens Fight Club and anyone who ran links like Failed Dimplomacy would just get rejected.

    1. Yeah I notice quite a few of the pro frig jockeys who use links never return the gf when they kill my plain old t1 ship. Perhaps it really wasn't a gf for them hehe, can't argue with that.

      I'd just like to point out this post was very much tongue-in-cheek and I wouldn't class the likes of Kaeda Maxwell and the mighty Kane Rizzel or Sard Caid for example in my jokey poke. (jokey poke - teehee) ... That's some crazy bitterness you talk about there, damn. Oddly I have received comments and mails before calling me out for my phantom links.

      Ahh the old days of Gusandall.

      /me wipes a tear on his sleeve and thinks about the old days.

      I can remember roaming with Wensley, we were in Rifters and heading fro mAmamake to this magical place called Molden Heath and he said to me, let's poke our heads into Gus and see if Kane is online and sure enough Kane was online and busy doing stuff to some farmers in the 2/10 and Wens said we best move on, that was Kane by the way and we carried on and it was like my first visit with my Uncle Wens and we'd been to see a grand wizard in his home and that was a nice memory and I was happy that I dropped into Gus that day to say hello and you waved to us and I started reading your blog religiously and we went to Molden Heath and Wens said hey you should meet my friend Sard, he is a bit like Kane and the rest ....

    2. Don't worry, didn't take offence at all and I respect you and your corps past and present for their abilities, fight I had the other night with Lhorenzho was sans links and so much fun, but that was roaming for a fight and not piracy.
      End of the day it all depends on your play style I think and what you want out of EVE, everybody chooses different things, some like to run in massive blobs with overwhelming logi/ecm/numbers yet others choose a more fun path, after all it is but a game and if people get so wound up about losing because someone did something or brought something better then I'm afraid I shall have to tell them to GTFO and go back to WoW :P

      (I have never played WoW but I'm told there's a lot of walking and something about purples)

  4. Conversely, how do you feel about the use of booster drugs?

    1. They should be available by intravenous drip in the capsule. omnomnom.

  5. Ganglinks tend to be a messy, shitty situation for players without them. All soloers see is some guys or guys propping themselves up with alts, alts which don't even have to be on grid or receiving weapons timers to have a profound effect on a fight.

    Changes like activating warfare modules incuring a weapons timer, or some sort of graphical effect on the players receiving benefits from links would go a long way to improving the situation without destroying the mechanic.

    1. That would be pretty cool, an animation where the ship glows pink or something. :) Perhaps difficult to implement in game but it would be great to see links show up on killmails too.

    2. Perhaps just use the same wibbly-wobbly animation that shows around the link ship.

  6. I can think of one simple solution; links should appear on killmails. It wouldn't change anything about the way links are used but it might discourage some of the guys using them for 1v1s when everyone can see what they're up to.

  7. I have a link alt that I usually roam with. I really only turn links on if I'm engaging a ship above my class, multiple targets, or if I'm ganking a mission runner or something and need the extra point range. I don't see the point in using them all the time in every fight. Good, close fights are hard enough to find as it is. Also, if you get a reputation as someone who abuses links, then everyone will start using links against you all the time.

    For example, if you ever see a gang in an FW plex, then skirmish links let you warp in MWD out of scram & web range before you get tackled, giving you a chance to at least separate them and get a kill or two when otherwise you'd probably just move along and try to find a fight elsewhere.

    I always found it kind of weird that some people feel so strongly about links but don't really care about drugs.

  8. I'd say it's down to the play-style that links tend to encourage, i.e. that of sitting in the same system with OGB's up and using them as an advantage in any fight regardless of the scenario.

    Also, with drugs you run the risk of having some negative effects attributed to you which aren't present with links.

  9. I don't think there's anything wrong in using links, drugs or any other combat enhancer. And wherever you draw the line of what you consider to be "fair" to use in different combat scenarios, that line will always be arbitrary. The reason why I don't use links is because I know I would lose out on a lot of fights against pilots I enjoy fighting. And then there is that feeling when you manage to beat someone who is using links when you're not. Hard to beat :)

  10. I stopped using links years ago because it was making me bad. I got to a point where i suddenly realized lots of my fits where built around the stats given by the linkship, and i hesitated to go into fights without having links running. Luckily i managed to get rid of the addiction and learned to somewhat function without. Now i think less of people running with links just as i lost my selfrespect when i was doing the same thing. I got that dirty "because of links" feeling every time i killed someone.

    I never bought the "i just use links to fight outnumbered/outshipped" argument. Fight outnumbered/outshipped clean it it might be worth a song. Maybe linkships got a role in more serious business fleet setups tho. I wouldn't know because i got no clue about that part of EVE. Still, its strange that you can get that advantage without mentionable risk and maybe most of all how it wont show on the killmail.

  11. If CCP were able to code it, a deployable structure that blocks links within its area of effect would be interesting and add a new dimension to on-grid positioning for fleets.
    Alternatively, it could block off-grid links but allow them on-grid.

  12. Put links on killmails.

    Now instead of a guy stroking his killboard e-peen with lots of solo kills, it ends up being lots of kills with loki against frigate.