Monday, May 4, 2015

Blue. No. Yel... Ahhhhrggggghhhhhh

Yesterday I went for a bit of a solo roam and found a Merlin on scan at a novice plex called "FWMerlin". I entered and found a fellow Caldari Militia member. I warped off to the other open plex in the system which I found empty and thought I'd hang inside and see if anyone came.

Someone did.

A Merlin called "FWMerlin".

So why did that 'purple' follow me here? I pretty much knew why. I deployed drones, pre-overheated my repper and got ready to type in local. You see this is faction war. He's purple, I'm red, and everyone's confused.

As expected he entered the plex and his overview was not set up correctly. Seeing me as -10 he opened up on me. Thankfully my gentle persuasion of explaining in local his error whilst simultaneously nuking his shields worked and he warped off. I generally use a two pronged approach to these situations.....


Can we really blame these new players? Nope. The overview is confusing and a PITA to set up right. I think the UI team need to have a look at it. OK, we can share overviews now but for new players is someone giving them a proper overview? For those Python fans, the comedy collective not the programming language, you probably recognize the title of this blog as a line for the Holy Grail and the Bridge of Death. Just like Sir Galahad, we can get easily confused by all those colours.

The standard overview settings (I think these are them) are one of the main reasons I get shot by my own militia regularly. OK, OK. The fact I'm -10 is THE main reason, but I won't attack my militia other than in self defence.

So there are a lot states that will override the fact I am allied to them. Sec status below 0, sec status below -5, pilot is a suspect, pilot is a criminal, all override that I am on the same side as them. Yes there is the old "ZOMG there is a pirate, shoot it!" but more often than not its because the overview shows me as a red and not a purple.

Generally intentional militia on militia violence isn't that common. You take a standings hit when you violence a fellow militia member and if you are in the NPC militia you'll soon be kicked out. Even in a player corp, if enough of you drag your militia standings down you'll get the corp kicked.

So how can we do this? How can we inform newer players how to get their overview right?

It's not easy. I had a good think and there are a lot of problems. For a start the militia section is yours or allied you cannot separate them. Allied militia don't get a standings hit when fighting so I can gank Amarrians all day long, but each Caldari I attack would give me a standings hit. So you don't want new players to think a -10 in an allied militia is a friend, he might be, or he might not be. So first thing is to decouple the allied militias, Then we need to highlight potential friend above potential foe. This is where it all falls down and probably why CCP decided to make sharing overviews rather than a revamp. I started this blog post thinking I could come up with a better way of simplifying the overview. I'm stuck. This is Eve, and as soon as I come up with something to help new players I also come up with a way vets could exploit it to get easy kills.

Anyone have an idea? I don't.


  1. Pitch it and start over.

    The Overview is the iTunes of the EVE interface: so bloated that it no longer does anything well. The best thing they can do is clean-sheet the design and consider splitting it up. It was obviously never intended support the level of complexity that it has to support.

    LDAP style inherited settings might be nice, with "current fleet" included in the inheritance hierarchy perhaps--though there's a real potential for abuse there, too.

    EVE already has something like it in the form of derived standings. Why not integrate it completely?

  2. I think when you join Fw you should a option to change overview settings