CSM 14 Update – Week 48

As always, there’s not any specific information to share due to the confidentiality of the discussions.

May 22nd, 2020

New in-game efforts for players

Revisited various balance & gameplay topics to check status

Discussed imminent Second Quadrant releases

Discussed longer term Third Quadrant plan

Dunk’s Corner

Last week I posted a short note on CSM voting dynamics.  This sparked a little discussion and some people asked what could be done to change voting to create a wider diversity of CSM members.

Here’s a review of some of the options that have been discussed. 

ALL OF THESE OPTIONS CAN AND WOULD BE GAMED, just some less than others.

Limiting ‘block’ candidates to one per group – The idea would be to disallow block candidates, typically at the coalition level, from putting multiple candidates on the CSM.  Or even disallow multiple candidates at the alliance level.

This idea is trivially easy to get around. With coalitions undefined in-game and alt alliances trivial to create, this is a non-starter.  Some may call for CCP to decide who is and isn’t in a ‘block’ but this would open a can of worms where CCP is asked make subjective decisions about out of client player affiliation.

Creating spots for specific playstyles – This idea would create slots for specific playstyles such as high sec, low sec, small gang PvP, industry, wormholes, etc. and ask players to campaign for these slots.

The issue here is how do you define if a player is qualified for a slot or not?  As an example, I am a director a large null sec alliance, executor of a high sec alliance, and top 1% industrialist.  Can I run for any of those slots? Most large groups could field candidates that qualify for any spot imaginable.

There is thought of limiting voting on slots to characters that partake in the playstyle. Again, this becomes untenable scale.  Again, as an example, on one account I have my null sec PvP main and a high sec hauling and market alt.  Which slot does this account qualify for in terms of voting for “playstyles”?

We have seen that CCP’s tools are not perfect when attempting to determine a player’s playstyle from data and metrics alone at the character and account levels.

Hybrid CSM – This idea is to have part of the CSM filled by open voting and part of the CSM reserved for “playstyle” candidates in slots created by CCP. 

This option has the same issues as the wider “playstyle” slots idea, it’s too difficult to prevent gaming the system and making characters designed to be eligible for “playstyle” slots and receive block voting help.

Voting based on players not accounts – This idea would have voting based on players not accounts. Each player would have a ballot as opposed to each account having a ballot.

This would reduce the influence of players with multiple accounts (widely seen in null sec groups), skill farmers, and other serious multi-boxers.  Also, this idea would attempt to move to a voting system that cannot be ‘bought’ as we have seen in previous elections.

CCP’s ability to determine actual humans owning multiple accounts is fairly good.  However this too, could be gamed, but only with significant effort that doesn’t scale.

However, this doesn’t guarantee any prevention of multiple CSM members from a single group or ensure any single playstyle is represented more strongly than before.

I would prefer this idea, as it solves some problems, but it doesn’t address everything.

Unfortunately, these is no simple way to lessen the influence of powerful social groups on the CSM election. It’s true that political parties make a difference in real life and New Eden.

Snooters enjoying Spring weather

CSM 15 Voting – A few thoughts

The CSM 15 election campaign is underway.  There are 40 people vying for the 10 slots.

Here’s a realistic look at the possible outcome.  I’m making some assumptions here about block voting, but knowing a lot of null coalition leaders and my CSM experience, I think it’s a reasonable take on the situation.

A key thing to remember is that getting #1 pick votes is crucial to being elected. They keep you in the running during the elimination rounds. In CSM 14, eight candidates had more than a 1,000 #1 votes and all but one were elected. Sort Dragon lost by 11 votes due Steve Rounken being supported on a wider number of slates than Sort did, who had more limited external support.

Unless you are part of a strong voting block and high on their ballot, having less than a thousand #1 votes means you probably won’t make it.  If you can’t count on having at least 500 #1 votes it’s almost impossible to get elected, unless you are the number choice on a big block voting slates.

The Sure Things – these slots are basically guaranteed based on previous voting dynamics.

Gobbins & second Panfam candidate – The PanFam block is strong and easily put two people on the CSM last year.

Merkelchan & Innominate – With Imperium level coordination, these CSM veterans are locks to return for CSM 15.

Vily – As a Legacy Coalition #1 pick, Vily will easily return.

Brisc Rubal – Supported by The Initiative + his constant campaigning, it’s hard to see Brisc not making a return now that he is tanned and rested.

That’s six of the ten slots that are basically locked in. Only 4 slots open to other candidates. I have very high confidence that those six slots will

The Get Out The Vote Candidates – these people having the needed number of people in their playgroup to win, but the question is, will they vote?

Maria Taylor – The Fraternity candidate.  If Fraternity members vote and there is real support on the wider PanFam ballot, this should be an easy seat.

Ikarus Cesaile – The Silent Company. Silent Company is huge with well over 10,000 characters.  If they can be motivated to vote, high sec will have a representative. However, it’s unlikely that Ikarus gets a lot of support outside of Silent Company, being new to the EVE politics and community scene.

Second Legacy Candidate – If the Legacy Coalition can coalesce on a second pick after Vily for the ballot, a second Legacy CSM member is a lock. 

Wormhole Candidate – The votes are there from the wormhole community. ExookiZ showed that on CSM 14.  However this year, Loroseco Kross of Hard Knocks is also running.  With ExookiZ currently out a wormhole and associated with Initiative and Hard Knocks relationship with the rest of the wormhole community listed as “It’s Complicated”, it remains to be seen if the wormholers can concentrate their votes to get candidate over the line.  The votes are there, but it’s unknown if they will be split or not.

If these candidates can “get out the vote”, they can likely get themselves on CSM 15.  That would be the 10 slots all filled.

There are many good candidates out there, several with good non-block support behind them.  Can any of them become an election surprise like Olmeca Gold on CSM 14?  Stitch Kaneland got 937 votes and made it to the top 13 before being eliminated. This could be his year if he gets a little wider support.

It’s really impossible to say.   Ballot slots 3, 4, and 5 start to matter when you get to the last slots and those aren’t usually known until the last minute before voting.

Larger groups and running statistical scenarios based on previous voting numbers and trying to game the negotiation of voting slate slots to ensure outcomes. 

Needless to say, if you aren’t one of the top six slots I mention and you aren’t extremely well known in New Eden, getting onto CSM 15 is an extremely difficult task.

CSM 14 Update – Week 47

As always, there’s not any specific information to share due to the confidentiality of the discussions.

May 15th, 2020

Discussed ideas for new player retention & new player issues

Extended discussion of new concepts with Ecosystem Team

Dunk’s Corner

A bit of a lull in news before two big things kick off.

With the abandoned structure state coming into the game with the next patch, I think we are on track to see some glorious explosions and interesting loot reports. While it’s not a perfect solution to citadel spam, it’s a good start in the direction of making citadels less disposable and making assets more at risk.

As someone who does alliance logistics, the last few weeks have been busy with discussions about what’s worth fueling and preparing for the change. A bit of a headache for those in the game that do this kind of thing, but in the long run it should lead to more fun and a general house cleaning of New Eden that is long overdue.

There will likely be some sad stories of players returning after extended break to find their assets gone in some locations. Active players will have plenty of warning about what’s happening, but those that are truly AFK or haven’t logged into their spy alts, may sing sad songs in the future.

Also imminent is the next phase of the Triglavian invasion. I think people will be surprised about exactly what CCP has up their sleeve. I will be exceedingly vague about this, but I do hope that the developers have not underestimated the energy that players can muster to create chaos & havoc.

I think it will be good fun and hopefully I can get my space work done soon so I can participate more fully in the next phase of the Triglavian saga.

Overall, there’s lots to do in EVE right now. We are seeing fights all over space, people yeeting in and out of regions, and continued new PVE experiences. Doesn’t feel stagnant to me.

Snooters stands guard over her Empire of Dirt

CSM 14 Update – Week 46

As always, there’s not any specific information to share due to the confidentiality of the discussions.

May 8th, 2020

Discussed development cadence

Reviewed the DDOS attacks

Reviewed CSM elections and prep for CSM 15

Discussed the on-going login & celebration campaigns

Dunk’s Corner

The Plex Market on the EVE Portal app is now public and available.

Due to the CSM meetings, I’ve known about this for some time. But in that time, I’ve never been able to figure out who exactly is going to use this feature. 

For those that don’t know, the Plex Market on the app allows trade on the Jita 4-4 market only.  You cannot choose another location for the trading.

In buying & selling Plex there are few major use cases:

Plex traders – People who buy & sell Plex as a commodity, profiting by the arbitrage in buy & sell order and price trends.

People converting Plex to ISK – People who spend real life currency on Plex via the New Eden store and then sell it to get ISK in game

People “Plexing” an account – People who convert ISK to Plex to allow them selves to subscribe to EVE with Plex instead of real world currency.

There are a few other cases, like players buying Plex to pay for SKINs from the New Eden Store, but their are fairly minor in comparison to the other use cases.

In recent years, much of trade in Plex moved to player owned structures with lower tax bases. At the scale of value in Plex trading, even a single percentage of lower taxes has significant benefit. 

With all Plex Market trade occurring in the Jita 4-4 market, a player is looking at being at a serious financial disadvantage by trading on a comparatively high tax market in Jita 4-4 as opposed to a player structure market.

So the question is, “Who will use the Plex Market on the Portal app?

There is no way serious Plex Traders will use it.  Every fraction of a percentage point matters, and they will always choose the most economically profitable method, which remains in-client at player markets.

The person selling Plex to get ISK is going to want to maximize their return, which means using a market with lower taxes, which isn’t Jita.  Maybe they are in some sort of rush to get the ISK for some immediate need?

The Plexing an account person might try it, with the use case of not having a market character in Jita.  Seems like an edge case, but who knows. Maybe you realize while sitting on the toilet that your account is about to go alpha and you want to keep it Omega, but are stranded because you are out of toilet paper?

CCP obviously put a lot of effort into this feature, but I’m just not clear on who is going to use it and if it will affect the Plex market in any measurable way. If you have some thoughts, I’d love to hear.

Snooters thinks the type is kinda small in the app