If a barbarian horde comes over your borders and you won’t or
can’t field a force to turn them back, you’ve no one to blame but
yourself when they start drinking your tea, eating cake off the good
china and leaving the toilet seats up.

“Hey, nice bit of real estate,” they’ll say “Good pig country. And
there’s nobody using it. I think we’ll stay.”  Next thing you know, the
locals are calling the lead barbarian “Your Highness”. 

     –  Fiddler’s Edge, Barbarians at the Gates

The blue-ball doctrine is, in essence, the practice of denying fights to the enemy.  It is commonly employed by members of sov holding alliances when raiding parties roams their space and those home-defense forces willing and able to counter the interlopers are not sufficient to guarantee said interlopers are properly curb-stomped. 

By denying a raiding party the kills and good fights they came for, the blue-ball doctrine seeks to discourage marauding bad guys without having to call in the cavalry.  When a band of desperadoes ride into nullsec town, guns blazing, the locals simply safe up and wait then out. And, absent an overwhelming home-defense fleet advantage, this makes perfect sense as there is no penalty for defensive indifference.

Everything of real value to the locals and the sov holding entity is protected by reinforce timers.  As you might imagine, returning to complete one’s pillage and burn on a schedule known to local law enforcement is not in the raiding party idiom.  As such, high value resources are normally safe from roaming desperadoes, as are an alliance’s sovereignty infrastructure. 

CCP has, of course, added deployable structures sans reinforce timers to provide targets for raiding parties without threatening the nullsec status quo.  However, at the end of the day such structures don’t represent significant enough of a strategic or financial loss to get the locals or the sov holders onto the field of battle.  And, absent any motivation to defend one’s space, blue-balling is the smart strategy for passive defense:  Deny the desperado fights. Deny the desperado kills. Deny the desperado fun.   A sufficiently bored desperado will soon be on his way to elsewhere, and slow to return.

Now, nullsec alliances often overextend their sovereign space, claiming more systems than they can actively use. There are a number of reasons for this, some financial, some logistic and some strategic. However, the end result is that much of sovereign nullsec is very sparsely populated.  As many players will attest, once you leave the main traffic pipelines and jump bridge systems, it is possible to travel through one sov-controlled system after another without encountering another player. 

Yet, despite a near complete absence of resistance to their presence in such places, raiders can do little harm to a sovereign’s interests.  And again, there’s no penalty to sovereigns who fail to repulse invading subcapital fleets. 

But what if there were?

There is a difference between holding sovereignty over a territory and controlling it.  Historically when barbarians show up to pillage the village the local sovereign may temporarily lose control of the village, but his/her long-term sovereignty is not in question.  The locals go back to generating revenue from the territory and all is as it was.  The status quo is maintained.

However, sometimes the barbarians don’t leave.  Sometimes they hang around and prevent the local population from harvesting resources or generating revenue from the territory. Or they begin keeping said revenues and harvests for hemselves.  Initially the barbarians are interlopers.  However,  unless sovereign takes umbrage at being so dispossessed and visits a big ol’ can of kingly whup-ass on the barbarians in a timely manner, said barbarians become the de-facto rulers in the sovereign’s place. This sort of thing isn’t uncommon when sovereigns become too weak or distracted to take an interest in local affairs at the far ends of an over-extended empire.

An emergent form of game-play in EVE Online is for a gang of ‘barbarians’, especially those in need of cash, to hang out in a sov-nullsec system for a while, and rat some anomalies.  In addition to being a means of picking a fight with the locals (“Hey, I’m ratting your sanctum! I’m AFK taking a shower! Come stop me if you can!”), it is a much safer and more lucrative way to make
ISK than ratting in lowsec.

With some slight tweaks to the sovereignty mechanics, this pattern of play could be leveraged to allow supercapital poor (or indifferent) alliances some stake in the nullsec game, and increase the amount of small an medium fleet action in nullsec. 

For example: 

Rixx Javix and his merry band of piratical anarchists have begun to target a sov nullsec system. They camp the system on an ongoing basis. They rat its anomalies and pod any of the locals foolish enough to venture in their direction. They sell the mining rights, take over the POCOs and lie in wait using the miners as bait for sov-holder gangs. If a sov holder fleet too big to handle shows up, they fade away, but always return after the fleet is gone and take up where they left off.   They eschew any grinding of sovereignty infrastructure.
At a certain tipping point, such forces in New Eden as manage claims to sovereignty will say to the owners of that system, “Look. I know you claim overlordship of this system, but I can’t help but notice that Stay Frosty is actually running things there.  They are collecting a substantial majority of the system’s revenues and resources.  You’re not using the system and you are either unwilling or unable to prevent Stay Frosty from so doing.  Thus, you have tacitly surrendered control of this system.  I’m pulling your
sovereignty.”

I call it the Adverse Possession (AKA Squatters Rights) mechanic.

In such cases, from a design standpoint, there are several ways
one could go. My favorite option would be for the Stay Frosty squatters to be offered sovereignty of the system as they have demonstrated effective control over time. In such a scenario, Stay Frosty would have the option to: 
Accept Sovereignty: In this case Stay Frosty gains sovereignty over the system with all the attendant rights and responsibilities.  All existing sovereignty infrastructure, including stations, SCUs and iHubs become Stay Frosty‘s.  If Stay Frosty doesn’t have sufficient funds available to pay the requisite sovereignty costs, accepting sovereignty is not a valid response to the offer. 
Refuse Sovereignty: Sovereignty in the system is dropped. All existing sovereignty structures become unanchored. If Stay Frosty does not respond to the sovereignty offer notification within a set period of time, it is treated as a refusal of the sovereignty offer.
Ransom Sovereignty:  Stay Frosty may offer to ransom the system back to the former sovereignty holder for an amount set by Stay Frosty (pirates, after all). The ransom offer can be made only to the sovereignty holder. If the sovereignty holder accepts within a set period of time, they automatically pay the ransom and retain sovereignty over the system.  If the sovereignty holder refuses or cannot afford to pay the ransom, or fails to respond within the allowed time period, Stay Frosty retains the option to accept or refuse sovereignty, but may not make further ransom offers.

Of course, the sov holder can always unlimber his supercapital fleet and retake sovereignty of a lost system. However, beyond the costs and inconvenience of so doing, we’ve seen the awkward strategic, tactical and political blow-back that can result when sov is lost due to inattention.  And an overextended sovereign engaged in wars elsewhere may find that playing a continuous game of wack-a-mole to reclaim peripheral or low value systems isn’t worth the while.

As I said long ago, one of the things I like about the Dominion Sov mechanics is that they require an active defense of one’s space.  However, with the proliferation of supercapitals, only possessors of large fleets of these ships can contest nullsec sovereignty.  With the consolidation of such fleets into fewer and fewer hands, the need to actively defend sovereign space is on the wane. 

Adverse Possession mechanics would provide subcapital fleets and gangs a meaningful role in nullsec.  Its requirement that sov-holders not only claim systems with sovereignty infrastructure, but actively control them, would inject risk into blue-balling as a strategy against small fleets, and should lead to more subcap PvP dust ups in parts of nullsec that have gotten all too peaceful.  

I do not expect the Adverse Possession mechanic to be popular with nullsec’s current hoi oligoi. It will likely discomfort them.  Their empires would be smaller. Small players, formerly beneath their notice, would enter the sovereignty game. They’d see more visits from lowsec as naughty folk like Rixx Javix and Kaeda Maxwell would have a new way to pick fights in local, and to shake coin from the pockets of the mighty.  The lords of nullsec would rest less easily on their starry beds. 

But this is EVE, and no one should sleep too soundly.  

– Mord Fiddle

About the Author: Mord Fiddle’s writings are an invitation to high tea in a world of rave parties. His readers gather at fiddlersedge.blogspot.com for thoughtful analysis, daring prose, deep insights, and Mord’s tendency to use words not writ nor spoken conversationally since Middle English went out of fashion.

1,836 Comments

  1. I thinkI feelI believe this isthat is one of theamong the so muchsuch a lotmost importantsignificantvital informationinfo for me. And i’mi am satisfiedgladhappy readingstudying your article. HoweverBut wannawant toshould observationremarkstatementcommentary on fewsome generalcommonbasicnormal thingsissues, The websitesiteweb site tastestyle is perfectidealgreatwonderful, the articles is in point of factactuallyreallyin realitytruly excellentnicegreat : D. Just rightGoodExcellent taskprocessactivityjob, cheers

    May 30, 2019 at 09:31 Reply
  2. There are hundreds of blogs that requires discuss them. What is the objective of blog site comments?

    May 30, 2019 at 23:55 Reply
  3. I’m aiming to find out as much about the on the internet surfing area as I can. Can any individual recommend their favored blogs, twitter handles, or sites that you discover most comprehensive? Which ones are most popular? Thanks!.

    June 1, 2019 at 05:36 Reply
  4. NiceGoodFastidious repliesrespondanswersanswer backresponse in return of this questionquerydifficultyissuematter with solidfirmrealgenuine arguments and describingexplainingtelling everythingallthe whole thing regardingconcerningabouton the topic of that.

    June 2, 2019 at 16:38 Reply
  5. AwesomeVery goodSuperbWonderfulFantasticExcellentGreat sitewebsiteblog you have here but I was curiouswanting to knowcurious aboutwondering if you knew of any user discussion forumsmessage boardscommunity forumsdiscussion boardsforums that cover the same topics talked aboutdiscussed in this articlehere? I’d really lovereally like to be a part of grouponline communitycommunity where I can get advicefeed-backresponsesopinionscommentssuggestionsfeedback from other knowledgeableexperienced individualspeople that share the same interest. If you have any recommendationssuggestions, please let me know. Bless youThanks a lotKudosCheersMany thanksThank youAppreciate itThanks!

    June 3, 2019 at 16:19 Reply
  6. Simply a smiling visitant here to share the love (:, btw great style and design.

    June 3, 2019 at 18:48 Reply
  7. HiWhat’s upHi thereHello to allevery oneevery , becausesinceasfor the reason that I am reallyactuallyin facttrulygenuinely keeneager of reading this blogweblogwebpagewebsiteweb site’s post to be updated regularlydailyon a regular basis. It containsconsists ofincludescarries nicepleasantgoodfastidious stuffinformationdatamaterial.

    June 4, 2019 at 16:21 Reply
  8. The best approach for the men which you can understand more about today.

    June 5, 2019 at 08:35 Reply
  9. HiHello, i thinki feeli believe that i sawnoticed you visited my blogweblogwebsiteweb sitesite sothus i got herecame to go backreturn the preferchoosefavorwantdesire?.I amI’m trying toattempting to in findingfindto find thingsissues to improveenhance my websitesiteweb site!I guessI assumeI suppose its good enoughokadequate to useto make use of some ofa few of your ideasconceptsideas!!

    June 5, 2019 at 15:02 Reply
  10. o no gratis Take a look at my site videncia gratis

    June 7, 2019 at 23:49 Reply
  11. Thank youThanks , I haveI’ve recentlyjust been searching forlooking for informationinfo approximatelyabout this topicsubject for a whileagesa long time and yours is the bestgreatest I haveI’ve found outcame upondiscovered so fartill now. HoweverBut, what about theconcerning thein regards to the conclusionbottom line? Are you surepositivecertain about theconcerning thein regards to the sourcesupply?

    June 8, 2019 at 03:07 Reply
  12. I wish to begin my very own blog site: exist such point as blog sites that are entirely “open”, and also anyone can see it? I maintain pertaining to the kind where you have to add various other “close friends” to utilize the website. Hyperlinks valued. Thanks!.

    June 8, 2019 at 07:16 Reply
  13. Without asking to remove it, is there a method i can delete my very own blog site discuss another person’s blog? Please help(:.

    June 8, 2019 at 23:15 Reply
  14. Hey there. I want to to inquire something…is this a wordpress weblog as we are thinking about shifting over to WP. Also did you make this theme on your own? Thanks.

    June 9, 2019 at 05:14 Reply
  15. Having read this I thought it wasI believed it was veryreallyextremelyrather informativeenlightening. I appreciate you taking the timefinding the timespending some time and effortand energy to put this articlethis short articlethis informative articlethis informationthis content together. I once again find myselfmyself personally spending way too mucha significant amount ofa lot of time both reading and commentingleaving commentsposting comments. But so what, it was still worth itworthwhile!

    June 9, 2019 at 07:10 Reply
  16. so far the best thing that you can do to market some stuffs is article marketing. it is very effective in reaching potential customers;;

    June 10, 2019 at 09:10 Reply
  17. Thank youThanks for any otheranothersome otherevery other greatwonderfulfantasticmagnificentexcellent articlepost. WhereThe place else may justmaycould anyoneanybody get that kind oftype of informationinfo in such a perfectan ideal waymethodmeansapproachmanner of writing? I haveI’ve a presentation nextsubsequent week, and I amI’m at theon the look forsearch for such informationinfo.

    June 10, 2019 at 09:56 Reply
  18. This is a really good tip especially to those fresh to the blogosphere. Short but very precise info Thanks for sharing this one. A must read post!

    June 10, 2019 at 16:10 Reply
  19. I believethinkthink that what youeverything postedwrotetypedcomposedsaidpublishedI believethinkthink that what youeverything postedwrotetypedcomposedsaidpublishedI believethinkthink that what youeverything postedwrotetypedcomposedsaidpublishedI believethinkthink that what youeverything postedwrotetypedcomposedsaidpublishedWhat youEverything postedwrotetypedcomposedsaidpublished waswas actually very logicalreasonablemade a lot ofa ton ofa bunch ofa great deal of sense. ButHowever, what about this?think aboutconsiderthink on this, what ifsuppose you were to writecreate a killerawesome headlinetitlepost title?added a little contentinformation?wrotetypedcomposed a catchier titlepost title? I ain’tam not sayingsuggesting your contentinformation isn’tis not goodsolid.I ain’tam not sayingsuggesting your contentinformation isn’tis not goodsolidI mean, I don’t wantdon’t wish to tell you how to run your blogwebsite, buthowever what ifsuppose you added a titlepost titlesomethinga headlinetitlepost title that grabbed people’sa person’sfolk’s attention?to maybepossibly getgrab people’sa person’sfolk’s attention?that makes people wantdesire more? I mean BLOG_TITLE is a littlekinda vanillaplainboring. You couldought tomightshould peeklookglance at Yahoo’s homefront page and watchseenote how they createwritecreate postnewsarticle headlinestitles to getgrab viewerspeople interestedto clickto open the links. You might add a videoadd a related videotry adding a video or a related picturerelated picpicpicture or two to getgrab readerspeople interestedexcited about what youeverything’ve writtengot to say. Just my opinionIn my opinion, it mightcouldwould bringmake your postsblogwebsite a little liveliera little bit more interesting.

    June 11, 2019 at 13:17 Reply
  20. Video lesbiennes sexe porno ladies Also visit my blog post sexshop

    June 11, 2019 at 15:21 Reply
  21. You madeYou’ve madeYou have made some decentgoodreally good points there. I lookedchecked on the interneton the webon the net for more infofor more informationto find out moreto learn morefor additional information about the issue and found most individualsmost people will go along with your views on this websitethis sitethis web site.

    June 12, 2019 at 02:08 Reply
  22. Just Browsing While I was surfing today I saw a great post about

    June 12, 2019 at 10:56 Reply
  23. Can you tell us more about thisI’d like to find out moreDo you have any video of that? I’d carelikelovewant to find out more detailssome additional information.

    June 12, 2019 at 13:51 Reply
  24. Thanks-a-mundo for the article post.Much thanks again. Want more.

    June 12, 2019 at 17:34 Reply
  25. If you wantdesirewish forwould like to takegetobtain mucha great deala good deal from this articlepostpiece of writingparagraph then you have to apply suchthese strategiestechniquesmethods to your won blogweblogwebpagewebsiteweb site.

    June 13, 2019 at 01:26 Reply
  26. Since the MSM is totally skewed, what blogs/websites have you discovered that provide you information that the MSM ignores?.

    June 13, 2019 at 04:14 Reply
  27. ThanksAppreciationThankfulness to my father who toldinformedshared withstated to me regardingconcerningabouton the topic of this blogweblogwebpagewebsiteweb site, this blogweblogwebpagewebsiteweb site is reallyactuallyin facttrulygenuinely awesomeremarkableamazing.

    June 13, 2019 at 11:15 Reply
  28. I’veI have been exploring for a little bita littlea bit for any high-qualityhigh quality articles or blogweblog posts in thison this kind ofsort of spaceareahouse . Exploring in Yahoo I at lasteventuallyfinallyultimately stumbled upon this siteweb sitewebsite. ReadingStudying this infoinformation So i’mi am satisfiedgladhappy to expressshowexhibitconvey that I haveI’ve a veryan incredibly just rightgoodexcellent uncanny feeling I found outcame upondiscovered exactlyjust what I needed. I so muchsuch a lotmost without a doubtno doubtundoubtedlysurelycertainlyfor suredefinitelyunquestionablyindisputablyindubitably will make certainsure to don?tdo not put out of your mindforgetfail to rememberoverlookdisregardomit this siteweb sitewebsite and giveand provides it a looka glance on a constanta continuinga relentless basisregularly.

    June 14, 2019 at 02:12 Reply
  29. There is evidently a bundle to know about this. I assume you made certain nice points in features also.

    June 14, 2019 at 04:57 Reply
  30. Just obtained a Blog writer account, it functions good, yet how do I find various individuals blog sites I such as with search. I keep in mind there is a method, but I am not seeing it now. Many thanks for your aid.

    June 14, 2019 at 08:00 Reply
  31. I’m gone to tellinformsay toconvey my little brother, that he should also visitgo to seepay a visitpay a quick visit this blogweblogwebpagewebsiteweb site on regular basis to takegetobtain updated from latestnewestmost recentmost up-to-datehottest newsinformationreportsgossipnews update.

    June 15, 2019 at 04:13 Reply
  32. You have brought up a very fantastic points, appreciate it for the post.

    June 15, 2019 at 11:40 Reply
  33. PrettyVery greatnice post. I simplyjust stumbled upon your blogweblog and wantedwished to mentionto say that I haveI’ve reallytruly enjoyedloved browsingsurfing around your blogweblog posts. In any caseAfter all I’llI will be subscribing for youron yourin yourto your feedrss feed and I am hopingI hopeI’m hoping you write againonce more soonvery soon!

    June 15, 2019 at 13:23 Reply
  34. Its like yousuch as you readlearn my mindthoughts! You seemappear to understandto knowto grasp so mucha lot approximatelyabout this, like yousuch as you wrote the booke-bookguideebooke book in it or something. I thinkI feelI believe that youthat you simplythat you just couldcan do with somea few p.c.percent to forcepressuredrivepower the message househome a bita little bit, howeverbut other thaninstead of that, this isthat is greatwonderfulfantasticmagnificentexcellent blog. A greatAn excellentA fantastic read. I’llI will definitelycertainly be back.

    June 16, 2019 at 02:52 Reply
  35. HiWhat’s upHi thereHello friendsmatescolleagues, how is everythingallthe whole thing, and what you wantdesirewish forwould like to say regardingconcerningabouton the topic of this articlepostpiece of writingparagraph, in my view its reallyactuallyin facttrulygenuinely awesomeremarkableamazing fordesigned forin favor ofin support of me.

    June 16, 2019 at 14:49 Reply
  36. HeyHowdyHi thereHeyaHey thereHiHello! I’m at work browsingsurfing around your blog from my new iphoneiphone 4iphone 3gsapple iphone! Just wanted to say I love readingreading through your blog and look forward to all your posts! Keep upCarry on the excellentgreatfantasticoutstandingsuperb work!

    June 17, 2019 at 03:00 Reply
  37. There is noticeably a bundle to know about this. I assume you made various nice points in features also.

    June 17, 2019 at 08:42 Reply
  38. you are not sure if they really are the Search Engine Optimization Expert they say they are.

    June 17, 2019 at 11:53 Reply
  39. HelloHey thereHeyGood dayHi thereHowdyHello thereHi! Do you know if they make any plugins to helpassist with SEOSearch Engine Optimization? I’m trying to get my blog to rank for some targeted keywords but I’m not seeing very good resultsgainssuccess. If you know of any please share. ThanksKudosAppreciate itCheersThank youMany thanks!

    June 17, 2019 at 12:49 Reply
  40. When I initially commented I clicked the Notify me when new comments are added checkbox and now each time a comment

    June 17, 2019 at 15:43 Reply

Leave a Reply to Berry Click here to cancel reply.