The POS revamp has been discussed for a long time and is a feature I personally am disappointed to have seen dropped by CCP. Whilst there is some bias in my standpoint due to managing several POS for T1, T2 and capital manufacturing I feel that a distinct opportunity was missed with the revamp to make POSs matter to people other than industrialists!
As a considerable amount of time has been invested into this already by CCP through prototyping and possibly art team time as part of this I think we should reverse CCPs new development method. Instead of thinking ‘What features have the widest scope across EVE?’ flip it on its head and consider ‘How can we make this feature matter to more players?’ thats a much better way to develop EVE than having a pile of near dead features.
Who cares about POS’s
Currently there are two main groups who care about POSs:
1) Individuals and groups making use of POS for profit, manufacturing, reactions, invention etc.
2) Groups making use of POS for logistics, WH dwellers and Nullsec stages, cyno jammers and jump bridges. This is a mix of harvesters and facilitator users.
Who should care about POS’s
There are some groups right now who should be interested in POS’s but currently aren’t due to the game mechanics and restrictions it is putting in place:
1) Small alliances looking to roam New Eden, the nomad type here one day gone tomorrow and squatting in someone elses space.
2) The large alliances looking to farm previously mentioned small roaming groups for some small scale PvP.
3) Mercenaries, right now I can count on one hand the number of Merc corps that will accept highsec POS bash contracts. I can count on two hands the number that will accept lowsec contracts.
4) Opportunists these people come in two types those wishing to make a quick profit from POS’s and those who want to make a profit from the misfortune of others.
5) Developing corporations and alliances, currently its very difficult to start small and work up as new players drag your standings down and leave you stuck with only the initial POS you anchored in highsec.
I will address each of these groups play styles in turn and address some of the top level functionality that is important in making the whole POS system more relevant.
Harvesters – Passive income
Unless we want to reinvent the wheel when it comes to moon mining then it needs to be considered as part of the POS revamp. With it potentially being nerfed with the introduction of ring mining it should be made easier to manage, for the small base of logistics guys which an alliance has as this simply makes sense on a cost/benefit analysis level.
As a nullsec POS manager I want to be able to monitor all of my POS’s current status easily without having to fly to each one, so that POS workers can be assigned tasks.
As a nullsec POS manager I want to be able to build a POS in the same way you would a ship in station ready to be deployed, so that I can separate the building and deploying POS workflows.
As a nullsec POS manager I want to be able to build POS’s using saved fittings in the same way as ships so that I can save time and conform easily to alliance POS standards.
As a POS worker I want to be able to set up a new moon mining POS with minimal amount of baby sitting time so that I save time.
As a POS worker I want to be able to adjust a POS fitting in space so that on the fly changes can be made to POSs with ease.
As a POS worker I want to be able to haul the required modules to change multiple POSs to a new fitting and simply apply the new fitting all in one without having to manually anchor each item of the POS.
Note: The above user stories also apply to other POS users, it should be noted as well that there should still be anchoring timers and onlining timers for separate guns etc but a user shouldn’t be manually required all the time. There is no fun in taking 2 hours to fit all the bits of a large POS but there is logic behind the timers to ensure that a defender cannot simply throw new POS modules on whilst under attack.
Harvesters – Active Income
Currently there is no mechanism for POS’s to enhance active income outside of construction at the POS, I think this could change to bring benefits for small groups in lowsec and non-sov nullsec. Some potential user stories with this in mind are below.
As a miner I want to receive greater rewards in high risk space, so that I am rewarded for taking a risk.
As a PvE’r I want to receive greater rewards in high risk space, so that I am rewarded for taking a risk.
As a miner/PVE’r I want to be rewarded for operating out of a system I call my home so that a POS is useful in more ways than a safe log off spot.
Note: A potential way of doing this is to provide benefits like those from sovereignty but nerfed down in line with the expense of running a POS compared to owning a system. I have also toyed with ideas such as having gang boosting like modules, effective ore refiners and compactors as well as PvE site scanning modules for POS’s. There is a lot that could be done I am more interested in the higher level what we want to achieve than the how it should be done CCP has better data to determine that.
Builders – T1 / T2 / T3
The main issue here is the risk reward scale, a large POS in highsec is untouchable to anyone other than the largest groups who happen to not be interested in said highec POS’s.
As a manufacturer I want to be rewarded with a higher profit for taking greater risks so that I have control over my profits in line with EVEs risk/reward structure.
As a manufacturer I want to be able to easily install multiple jobs at a POS without wishing death upon myself so that I can get on with other things.
As a manufacturer installing jobs across multiple arrays at a POS I want to be able to have a single input so that I don’t have to sit in space and move materials between manufacturing arrays.
As a T2 manufacturer I want to be able to install T2 jobs in a POS without it costing me more materials to do so than in station so that it is more in line with EVEs risk and reward principles.
As a manufacturer and/or manufacturing manager I want to be able to install jobs without having the materials in place ready to build so that I can feed a job as it progresses. (Use case: Indy corp sets target build 100 drakes this week, feeds POS with materials they mine as they mine and can see live progress of what still required. Alternative use case: I’m just short of materials and didn’t realise it. However I want to be able to install the job and have it sat at pending whilst I fetch required materials so I don’t have to do same thing twice.)
Note: The obvious way for the risk/reward to scale is for the material requirements to vary depending upon the location of the materials. Highsec station +10% materials, Highsec POS +5% materials, Lowsec station +5% materials, Lowsec POS +0% materials, Nullsec Station +0% materials, Nullsec POS -2.5% materials (offsets shipping costs back to trade hub).
Builders – Components
This works relatively low but I would like to see further manufacturing time reductions for building in lowsec or nullsec, not even opposed to material reductions but time is easier to balance.
As a manufacturer of components I want to be able to easily install all of my components in one go by bulk selecting BPOs/BPCs and entering how many of each I want to build in order to save me time.
Note: I would also like tax to be restructured in EVE to consider the market as more of a social aspect of EVE. This would help component and bulk builders, for example B2B sales tax being different to B2C and the posting on market of bulk sales. E.g. reduced profits for selling 200,000 units of a t2 component as is done on Bulk Trade mailing list right now.
Builders – Reactions
Reactions are relatively hard to understand and are not something that players are trained to do, we need to introduce this at a low profit level to high sec in order to get more players involved. It may also be in EVEs interest to separate harvesting from reacting more distinctly. So materials are harvested, then go to a building POS where they react.
As a POS reaction worker I don’t want to have to offline my silos between POS ticks to empty/refill them to prevent losing product so that the system is easier to understand and requires low effort for the low return.
As a POS reaction manager I want to be able to view the silo status of all of my POSs so that I can send a worker to empty or refill them as appropriate.
As a POS reaction manager I want to be rewarded for having my POS in logistically challenging areas of space, such as deep 0.0, so that there is a reason to do them in areas other than lowsec entry systems and C1 WHs with HS connections.
As a POS reaction manager I want risk and reward to scale so that I can do reactions even in high sec space but at a reduced reward.
As a solo player I would like to be able to react all of the materials to build all of my components for my current production run from a single POS so that I can increase my profit by doing more work and having a larger POS.
Note: Example of reward for being in logistically challenging area is having larger silo space. We could also consider process flow as part of reactions can we make it easier to go from moon goo and minerals to T2 ship without removing process stages but instead merging them all in a single POS with a higher maintenance cost.
Builders – Science (invention, reverse engineering, ME, PE and Copying)
If there is an area that needs some risk/reward love this is it.You can hold your nice shiney BPO in station with zero risk and copy away making a reasonable passive income. I am not against this but believe we should scale risk and reward.
As a science POS user I want to be able to risk my expensive stuff in space such as BPOs with the reward of faster processing time, so 5 day copy time becomes 4 day etc and I see increased reward with risk.
As a science POS user I want to be able to take even greater risks by holding expensive BPOs in my POS in low sec for further faster processing times, so that I see yet further increased reward with risk.
As a science POS user I want to be able to install identical jobs all at the same time so that I can save time.
As a science job manager I want to be able to request jobs from my corporation and set a reward for doing them. i.e I want 100 badger max run copies of at least ME10 PE5 so that I can manage workflows on a greater scale.
As a science POS user I want to be able to queue jobs so for example I can start my invention of my copies when they are ready straight away, up to a 24 hour period, so that small tasks are easier to manage. *High priority*
Note: The 24 hour science job queue is something that would really benefit EVE across the board. Right now copying and invention for T2 modules is a bit too time consuming especially on a large scale, the 24 hour limit on the queue would keep this true but would allow you to not have to log on every 3 hours to set the next T2 module invention jobs going but keep it so that being involved in the task every 24 hours keeps your profit at its best.
Nomad corporations and small alliances
Currently EVE is quite stagnant, you set up in space and you build your fortress – this is only one of several playstyles that 0.0 (and lowsec) should accommodate being nomadic should also be possible.
As a nomadic leader I want to be able to have higher POS expenses for a limited duration of POS invulnerability with a trade off of no industrial ability, so that my group can live in an area of space for a week and then move onto the next.
As a nomadic leader I want asteroids and rats to deplete in a similar way to wormholes to encourage a nomadic roaming nature so that I am given a benefit of higher rewards for my always moving life style.
As a nomadic leader I want it to be easy to set up and take down camp and move on to the next location, to make it a viable long term solution.
Note: Nomadic roaming groups could breathe life into areas of space for small periods of time. They would provide PvP threats and opportunities in areas of space that normally would be stable, they would also provide content for industrialists as they would have to live off the locally available resources without the ability to build their own or have more resources than they can carry.
*Important* to make this viable we should introduce a lot more nullsec to nullsec wormholes, then nomads can easily move from one end of the universe to the other. This also makes roaming PvP more viable as you can travel to the other end of EVE in 1 minute for some quick relief PvP with a risk of if the WH collapses being trapped where you roam.
Nullsec groups – Logistics
Space empires require space infrastructure to make life bearable, these also form roaming targets.
As a small PvP group I want to be able to attack the logistical framework of large alliances to destabilise them so even with small groups big wins can be accomplished.
As a nullsec logistical manager I want to be able to set up template cyno jammer and jump bridge POSs with ease so that I can save time.
Note: We should strongly consider making jump bridge POS’s having no defensive abilities and more like beacons that can be attacked. Think of them like POCOs in that small groups can attack them, but its more interesting as ships appear and give opportunity for PvP instead of PvStructure.
Mercenaries – POS Destruction
On the whole Merc groups are relatively small and specialist groups, who field fleets up to 20 people on average. There are some bigger groups but most are small, these groups should be able to take down POS’s and large highsec objectives in the same way they could in lowsec using dreads and taking risks.
As highsec mercenaries we want to be able to destroy and POS in highsec by taking large risks with a group of 10+ specialised people, so that we can bring consequences to all in EVE without having to shoot a structure for 12 hours+.
Note: This single user story is very important. There should be risk to highsec POSs this could be done by reducing HP or more interesting would be the introduction of T2 dreads that can enter highsec. The reason I find this interesting is there is opportunity to build, sell, buy, destroy so it has a wider effect than simply changing the POS HP and empowers small groups of players. *Important*
Opportunists are money motivated and do things for quick cash, they are also potential interaction and conflict drivers in the game.
As an opportunist if I see a POS offline I want to be able to wardec the corporation and hack their asset to unanchor it, so that there is greater risk in leaving stuff floating in space.
As an opportunist if I see a poorly defended POS I want to be able to attack it, destroy it and loot some of the contents and materials from ongoing construction so that I can make ISK whilst giving a risk to POS ownership.
As an opportunist I want to be able to set up a POS fast so that I can jump on a recent market trend so that I can make a quick profit and not have to make a long term commitment.
Note: These changes would be very interesting in driving involvement with the POS system from those who don’t own POS’s. This is probably where we should start and build up from so that we can first make people want to own a POS before spending too much time on it.
Developing corporations and alliances
EVE is hard, I like that, but it does need some stepping stones to make development easier. The most successful groups in EVE have been established groups coming in, this is a pity EVE should develop groups not be host to them.
As a small corporation owner I want to be able to easily grow my POS assets as my corporations needs expand so that we can grow and scale.
As a developing groups leader I don’t want to be influenced by recruiting low standing players so that I can no longer anchor POS’s in high sec so that I am encouraged to engage with other players.
The major issues that run as common themes across all of these user stories are:
1) Risk and reward – players who take risks or dedicate time should receive bigger rewards.
2) POS work is too slow – being able to bulk anchor and online would solve a lot of issues.
3) Encourage engagement with the feature – opportunists should be able to make ISK attacking POS’s and industrialists should be able to make profit without long term commitment to the feature.
These core points if attacked together could create a very engaging expansion for EVE with a core industry theme that provides opportunity to pillage from said industry players for the PvPers.
The perfect expansion for me this Winter would feature T2 capital ships (including no jump drive highsec lower DPS dread), T2 capital modules and new capital T1 modules (plates, cap boosters, ASBs etc), POS revamp and industry usability improvements. Combine this with increased nullsec to nullsec wormholes and balanced risk and reward for POSs and you would change the face of EVE for a lot of players.
- Danny Centauri