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Friday, January 29, 2010

Alliance Thoughts

This post is about the structural implications of corporations and alliance organization as it applies to wormhole living.

As various others have posted and commented on in the past, there's an interesting difference between alliances that were formed as alliances with purpose build corporations and the primary focus being the alliance as a whole, and alliances that are made up of strong individual corporations.

In wormhole space the biggest issue that an alliance runs into is that in order to operate effectively in wormhole space you need to operate out of a POS. The problems start coming along in that POSes were designed to be corp entities and the alliance level facilities are few and far between. This effectively forces each corporation in an alliance that want's to operate in w-space for any extended period of time to put up their own POS. This is not so much a problem for the industrialists since we're usually the ones with the POSes. Mainly because we're the ones with the manufacturing arrays and the reactors.

It becomes an issue for the rest of the pilots since the two facilities that are needed simply to live in w-space become problematic. You need a spot to stash your ships and you need a spot to stash your reserves/loot that's accessible. When you're operating out of your own corps POS it's not an issue. Your CEO sets up some hangars and makes sure that your level of access is appropriate. The only thing that is effectively available at the alliance level (for daily life) is the Ship Maintenance Array.

The major reason for the need for multiple ships is that in EVE ships are highly specialized. For example if you're going to go mining it's different ships than if you're going after sleepers, responding to a BC intrusion, a SB intrusion or a BS intrusion. These all call for different ships let alone different setups for those ships. Not to mention re-mounts for the inevitable loss. Most pilots end up with an average of 3-6 ships in w-space at any one time if they operate out of there on a daily basis. Which brings up the problem that anyone who has access to a ship maintenance array can take any ship in there out. Which brings up corp/alliance security issues. Once you get beyond a certain size, you're guaranteed to have some bad apples in the and things go missing etc... This doesn't even get into the issue of POSes going up and down on a monthly basis as activity focus shifts and if you're away for a few days you may suddenly find your ships spread all over high sec (if you're lucky).

Then we get pilot focus issues. It's all very well to have your corp focus on a specific activity at the corp level but if only about half your pilots are into that activity it kind of lets the rest go by the way side, and you end up with a corp without specific focus.

The problem here is that in a lot of cases the primary allegiance of a pilot is to his corporation. The concept of inter-corporation mobility is actually frowned upon. In an ideal world some corporate structure with more security safeguards in it but that allows for more mobility between corporations within an alliance would be desirable. This would allow alliances to form specific purpose corporations and when pilots wish to focus on different activities they can simply switch over to corporations with the focus that they are interested in pursuing. This would allow for a normalization of POS spam while guaranteeing that the pilots in specific corporations are interested in doing what that corporation is set up to do.

One could do this in EVE without too much trouble IF one sets up one's alliance like this from the get go. Changing to such a structure when you've already got an alliance with longstanding established corporations is a much more difficult proposition (you can rest easy guys I'm not planning on doing this with AMC). But if you're setting one up for this from the get go it's not such a bad idea. This way one could have a corporation for those IN wormhole space, a different corporation for those wanting to stay and mission in high sec for extended periods, another for inactive reserves (people who indicate they'll be away for a while and/or will just be puttering around without committing to anything specific).

It should be noted that once a pilot can fly an Orca some of the issues go away since you can use your own Orca as a mobile base for your stuffs. Simply make sure your most important ships are in the Orca and then log out inside the POS. When you log back in you can stuff the Orca into a designated SMA and do your stuff then at the end pull it out to log out in and store any new acquisitions.

At any rate that's my toughs on alliance organization with regards to wormhole space.

Side note: I have been following the various gyrations in the south (Provi-block, Goon semi-implosion, IT gloating, etc...) as it makes for interesting reading. Not being involved however I'm not going to have much in the way of comment. Kirith Kodachi and Manasi however are deeply involved on opposite sides of the Provi-block squabble and provide excellent very balanced reading on that campaign. I highly advise reading about the last week's worth of posts from both these fine gentlemen. For the goon situation, I'm waiting with high interest for the next "sins of a solar spymaster" post from The Mittani. Regardless of the spin-doctoring it will be an interesting read.


Mick Flaherty said...

In addition to the Alliance issues, general security becomes an issue in w-space and POS living.

There is no way (that I know of) to limit access to only certain ones of the same type. For example I can set a corpie to have access to a hanger division, but he gets that for every hanger in every POS he has access to. Same for Ship Maintenace.

It would so much better if instead of simple yes/no for hangers you could at set "security level" and then assign a needed level to each structure.

That way you could have a Ship Maintenace Array with the Orca, Hulks, T2 Transports and other expensive ships that you dont want the rank and file to have access to "off limits", while still giving themn access to a Ship Maintenace Array at the same POS for the BC, Frig, Scanning Frigs etc. Same for Hangers. Could have a higher security hanger for mins and valuables, while maintaining a less secure comman hanger for mods and fittings.

Just a rant on security.

Fly Safe,

Manasi said...

Letrange...thanks mate. You bring up a very prominent issue and that is the command/ control of the alliance/corporation is done with some of the most difficult systems to use in game. Station access is an abomination, alliance setting of standings is a pathetic joke. simply put the way that CCP forces people to use means that those living out of POS really do suffer. Protection of Corp hangers and such is only possible where station vaults are built and they cannot be is so bass ackwards it is not even funny. The real trouble is that the all or nothing at all nature of access is very very hard to deal with...this is compounded even further by the necessity of living in a POS.

Letrange said...

well you know the squeaky wheel gets the grease. There just aren't enough alliance leaders. Even if we all complain together it's still just a blip compared to the avalanche of "fix my Nagalfar"

Perseus Kallistratos said...

I think the most succesful alliances I have seen using wormholes generally use only one corporation in the wormhole itself. Sort of an industrial arm in an alliance. Having a whole alliance in a wh could only be a nightmare.

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