Ro(bot) Wars: EVE Style

2020-11-20

Header art by Cryo Huren

A few days back, Venal residents were astounded and amused to see citadels instantly disappear, their EVE-mail notifications flashing with messages that their clones had been destroyed, and their assets had been moved to lowsec.

CCP Steps Up Against Botting

CCP Peligro himself, like Zeus descending to Earth, had arrived in Venal, to provide long-awaited justice for relentless botting and ISK-selling groups currently swarming the region. To the amusement of local capsuleers, Peligro spoke directly to them in local (a very rare occurrence in EVE Online), promising more actions on botters and ISK sellers.

But, according to James Hordon, when the Olympian dust settled, only APEC Corporation and very few players, including Pavel XL and himself were actually banned. Hordon denies any RMT or botting. Rather, he says he was paid by corps not to harass their mission runners while also destroying the main competition for missions, Pandemic Horde (PH)  and Fraternity (FRT) pilots. Not a single other group of ISK farmers was touched, raising eyebrows and questions.

Bot Wars (A Game of Three Thrones)

There are three major ISK-farming factions in Venal, with hundreds of characters doing Level 4 missions 24 hours a day, seven days a week. It’s almost impossible to document this behavior. Even CCP has trouble confirming botting, but people claim to have witnessed such behavior over a long period of time.

1 . Pandemic Horde

Pandemic Horde (PH) is the biggest ISK farming group, with at least 40+ characters running Level 4 missions day and night. PH has a dedicated corporation called Burner Beans for such missions. They pay a 45% tax.  No human player would stand for such a tax when they could run missions elsewhere and pay far less.

Not long ago, PH had a number of citadels in each system, where the characters running missions keep their ships.  According to Hordon, these structures were all destroyed by Pavel XL and himself. As a result, PH characters use Fraternity’s citadels, since being in the “blue donut” gives them access. Having a safe citadel is absolutely essential for ISK farming.

Recently, Venal residents received an ultimatum from PH leader Gobbins to stop targeting ISK-farming infrastructure in Venal, or face purge and eviction.

This action shows the importance of the ISK flow from PH ISK farmers running agent Level 4 missions.

2. Fraternity

Fraternity is a second biggest ISK farming group, with at least 30+ characters running Level 4 missions day and night. When Venal residents tried to destroy FRT citadels in the region, FRT leadership responded, with Noraus (the leader of FRT), bringing a full CTA fleet to defend an unarmed FRT Astrahus, far away from the motherland, and he threatened to purge all local residents from Venal. He then posted those threats himself in local chat, clearly indicating how importantly he views the ISK supply he receives from those ISK farmers.

To prevent any further aggressive action in Venal, FRT deployed a Fortizar-class citadel in every Venal system, to protect those ISK farmers and provide them with safe haven.

There is a big drama between FRT and PH, since FRT ISK farmers are not happy with PH ISK farmers using FRT citadels. Too much farming lowers the Guristas’ LP rate, subsequent to the ESS kicking in. According to Hordon, FRT leadership even EVE-mailed Venal residents, asking them to destroy PH citadels. This one purports to be from FRT leadership:

Drone Space Update – ImportantSo as expected when we started the war down south there were always going to be entities that wanted to come to our home for easy whaling.

Many of you have seen a motely crew of small entities looking for “good fights” hiding up in Venal.

While, at first the content was a great distraction from the TiDi fests and structure grinds that were Delve. Their continued interference of operations at home cannot go unchecked anymore.

As such, we will start moving to a position where we will remove them from the fringes of the drone regions. If they then persist in hounding our space, we will then look at further options, and while I do not want to if needs be taking a small excursion to their homes, and see how they feel about it.

To be clear the war with the Imperium is and will continue to be our main focus, and I still want to see everyone fully committed to the Southern theatre.

For all you spais reading this (and I know there are some) fun time is just beginning!

More information will be disseminated shortly.

It’s not clear to some how FRT can move back to Venal while also being “fully committed to the Southern theatre.” As of November 19, FRT troops, some 110 players strong, including Noraus – the FRT leader – are attacking Trigger Happy structures in HD-JVQ, a system in Venal. They are supported by at least 15 titans (see below) that are no longer on the front lines in Delve.

3. APEC corporation

They were the third biggest ISK farming force in Venal, paying Pavel XL and Hordon for protection, while those two actively hit PH and FRT citadels to remove the competition. APEC corporation was using old Out of Sight (OOS) citadels, left over from the days of power and glory for OOS. APEC had no citadels of their own.

Now, APEC Corporation is banned. They no longer appear in Venal local chat anymore. Paxel XL and Hordon are also banned. CCP is in the process of investigating their conduct.

Justice for All?

There are numbers of questions left unanswered. Are the FRT and PH characters that are running Level 4 mission 24/7, bots? Or are they just slaves forced to run those missions daily, without rest, taking time to eat, or having days off? The former possibility, botting, is punishable by a ban. The latter reason, slavery, should awaken in many a desire to unshackle.

If Pavel XL and Hordon were banned for protecting ISK farmers – and for receiving in-game ISK and items from them – will we see other offenders banned as well? Why punish only one of the three offending alliances?

What does the CSM think about this issue? EVE Echoes alliances have taken matters into their own hands. They aren’t waiting for NetEase to act and combat botting. Does CCP expect the same to happen in New Eden? Maybe we’ll just enjoy the silence before the storm and see if Zeus descends from Olympus a few more times.

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Comments

  • Eve_Osir1s

    Gold farming sweatshops are a thing. It wouldn’t surprise me if Eve had them too like wow did.

    November 20, 2020 at 12:03 PM
    • Garreth Vlox Eve_Osir1s

      There was an EVE-O forum post some years back claiming to be a russian guy who was formerly a member of the alleged gold farming sweatshops in eve. Don’t remember if it was ever confirmed though.

      November 21, 2020 at 2:40 PM
  • Havish Montak

    Wouldn’t surprise me if FRT and PH were the sourve of the BOT reports.

    November 20, 2020 at 12:54 PM
    • Garreth Vlox Havish Montak

      I’d be shocked if they weren’t.

      November 21, 2020 at 2:38 PM
  • Yaroslav Pletnev

    Isk must flow…

    November 20, 2020 at 12:59 PM
  • Guilford Australis

    FRT and Horde slapping each other over rights to the ol’ ancestral botting pastures? My, my. How is it the Reddit cretins put it? “Cracks are forming” or something like that? Now all we need is a shoddy WWII analogy and a Sun Tzu quote to make this a proper EVE narrative.

    November 20, 2020 at 1:35 PM
    • WWI analogies are more fashionable these days but yeah…

      November 20, 2020 at 4:02 PM
  • Kyle Khamez

    Oh yes, I used to run 32 accounts pulling burner missions in Venal. I know very well what those people were up to. Glad CCP finally took notice. Now time for me to sell my stack of 500 Gilas.

    November 20, 2020 at 1:46 PM
    • Gray Doc Kyle Khamez

      What makes you think CCP has taken notice?

      November 20, 2020 at 4:06 PM
      • Kyle Khamez Gray Doc

        They responded to several months of reports

        November 20, 2020 at 7:55 PM
  • Rammel Kas

    Sounds like a bucket of krabs having one of crack a fart hoping to chase the others from the fish food at the bottom.

    November 20, 2020 at 1:51 PM
    • Susurrus Synaesthesia Rammel Kas

      English. Do you speak it? 😉

      November 24, 2020 at 2:26 AM
  • min

    keep up with false reports imperium dudes:P
    Burner beans are real people who runs about 40 missions a day and takes break after that. still you get good amount of isk

    November 21, 2020 at 5:40 AM
    • Garreth Vlox min

      “still you get good amount of isk”

      Sounds like you get half of a good amount of isk.

      November 21, 2020 at 2:38 PM
      • LMAO you don’t really don’t know where the money comes from

        November 21, 2020 at 3:12 PM
        • Garreth Vlox min

          how much can you really make selling over farmed items? We watched this happen to the faction warfare farmers who farmed VNI’s to death. Sooner rather than later those items tank in value and at that point all you have are burner payouts taxed at 45%

          November 21, 2020 at 3:38 PM
  • kwnyupstate .

    How do you think North Korea can pay for its Nuclear program?

    November 21, 2020 at 6:08 AM
    • Selling shoddily photoshopped noodz of Dear Leader?

      November 23, 2020 at 9:48 AM