Archive for September, 2011

Ninja Baiting: Your Mileage May Vary

Posted in Uncategorized on September 16, 2011 by paul

Khalia made a post detailing why he thinks that Ninja Salvaging is Dying. I wanted to make a quick post to clarify my position. As the Gold Ammo scandal posts indicated, being Space-BFFs doesn’t mean that Khalia and I always agree 100% on everything.

I agree with Khalia that the dynamic has changed for Ninja Salvaging and Baiting. Salvage and loot are less valuable. Mission runners are more spread out. In general, Mission Runners are less likely to shoot. I suspect that Khalia and I in particular are less likely to be shot at because of the widespread popularity of MLYT.

The Orca hot-swap nerf? Meh. Although swapping my faction-fit Tengu for a shuttle and warping away was very LOL, ultimately it was a bad mechanic and needed to be changed. Though recently most Ninjas have been getting their kills by aggressing with tanked bait-frigates and swapping to pew ships from a speed-fit Orca, I never really stopped doing my ganks the old-fashioned way, warping out, swapping ships, and coming back. Some ninjas will fall back on this, and others will find something else to do.

The biggest reason that I have not personally been out ripping off carebears has been, as Khalia said, my stupidly busy schedule. My leisure times begin on weeknights at about the time that most normal people go to bed, and I’m completely unable to play on weekends. Khalia and I are having a lot of fun during the non-prime hours getting space-rich in wspace. My departure from Suddenly Ninjas was in name only–I’ll always be a Ninja at heart.

I don’t think Ninja Salvaging is dying. It’s changing, as it always has been. As for the community “declining”? I disagree. I remember the days when Khalia, Aiden, and Zav were new to the corp. I referred to them as “the new kids” and was nostalgic for the “old crew”. Now those kids are the old crew and a new batch of Ninjas are carrying the banner. Likewise, the forum community hasn’t changed in maturity, only in meme-of-the-week. I would have no objection to flying with them again if my schedule allowed it. I hope to do so again someday, and make the bears sad!

Ninja Salvage and Bait Is Dying

Posted in Ninja Salvaging on September 11, 2011 by khalia

This is an opinion piece. I expect a lot of disagreement in comments; please do. Both Paul and I like to see the blog as a place where people can freely express opinions, even when we don’t agree with them, or you with us.

Commenters have recently asked why Paul and I are living in wormhole space killing sleepers instead of playing in hisec and ganking mission runners. Part of the reason is Paul’s new business which keeps him extremely busy; and the Advanced Emergency Medical Technician class I had been taking this summer. Another reason was that we wanted to get Space Rich, and sleepers are one good way to do it.

But for me, there is another reason: The Ninja Salvage (plus Bait & Gank) play style is no longer anywhere as enjoyable as it once was. When I first started, it was possible to kill two or three ships a night, sometimes even more. And a strong possibility of tears. Now it takes time and effort to get even a single kill. Here’s some of the reasons why this play style, for me, has gone downhill:

When I first started, way back in Quantum Rise, probing was an entirely different affair. It was more difficult to scan down a player, and players had no expectation of someone showing up in their mission and plundering salvage and loot. As a result, shock factor led to shooting. The new scanning system – which I love, don’t get me wrong – makes it fast and easy to scan mission runners down. Combined with a rapid rise in the ninja play style – thanks to visibility from Suddenly Ninjas – today’s mission runners expect to see people popping in on their missions. They know it’s not that hard, and they learned that we can and will come back and blow them up if they decide to shoot us. Suddenly Ninjas have said often, and clearly, “If you don’t want to get shot, don’t shoot ninjas”. They listened.

Changes to missions have also made the ninja/bait lifestyle harder. The Level 4 mission loot nerf sharply reduced the value of looting these missions. As a result mission runners aren’t as eager to loot their missions; many just speed through them to get more ISK/hour from loyalty point rewards. So why shoot at those stealing it? Even if they do decide to salvage and loot, the Noctis has made it all but impossible for a ninja to out salvage a mission runner. The speedy Vigil can’t keep up with 70km tractor beams and salvagers with cycle time bonuses.

Mission runners also used to be congregated in a few places, all well known – Dodixie, Ruvas, Ichiyora to name a few. Changes to missions since then have included missions now being spread to surrounding systems more often and the changing of agents to all of the same quality. Now mission runners don’t need to stay in one place for those L4Q20 missions, and those missions are spread all over the surrounding area. With more diffuse targets, it’s harder to find targets, and if you travel you have to bring your ship collection with you.

I’m not saying you can’t still get a Raven Navy or Rattlesnake kill – people can and do – but it’s not the same fun per hour that it was when I started. This is why I’m not doing this right now. Like Paul, I’m pleased to see people carrying on in the emails to us.

The general decline in the communities around this playstyle are a final reason that I am not highly interested in going back. Suddenly Ninjas and TEARS was at a high point around 18 months ago, but has steadily declined. I am sorry to say that the group which I thought had a lot of intelligent, classy people, now seems more like 4chan’s /b/ section.

As always, comments welcome.

I Am Paul Clavet’s Wasted Life

Posted in Delicious Tears on September 8, 2011 by paul

Though Khalia and I have been in wspace winning and failing spectacularly, there are those who carry my banner without my even asking. I’ve commented more than once that I feel like the Joe/Jack protagonist in Fight Club, with people off doing things in my name that are entirely outside of my knowledge. I will post two Eve mails I have received recently without any further comment.

From: Kim Jong Illest
Sent: 2011.09.08 18:03
To: Paul Clavet,

o/ Paul,

Reading your blog has inspired me to become a collector of tears. I have created this alt as a suicide ganker of miners, and, as a tribute to you would like to send all my victims a message that “Paul Clavet sends his regards”. Is that ok with you? Thanks for all your hard work on the Blog, as well as to everyone else involved. Fly Safe


And then…

sending regards
From: aflixxion
Sent: 2011.09.08 14:15
To: Paul Clavet,

your buddy Kim Jong Illest just ganked a friend that is a indy pilot and said you send your regards. So i hope you sent your buddy out to gank the right person cause clearly you have my friend mistaken for someone unless that is your alt or what ever you friend kim duck dong or whatever his name is no matter just another gook