Thursday, January 3, 2013

CCP's fucked up bounties

     Hypothetically speaking, of course, say I'm a space-rich asshole in Eve who gets my rocks off by using the chip on my shoulder (from real life inadequacies) to fuck with other people in-game.  For any old reason, or none at all, I think I'll take 500 million isk and drop it on someone, just for the lolz.

     In listening to a recent podcast, it appears lots of people don't understand how the new bounties work, including CSM members, so I thought I'd try it out and see how it works.

     First of all, the bounty is paid out at a rate of 20% of the UNINSURED value of the ship.  That part is important, which is why it's all big letters n' shite.  The bounty is also supposedly including the value of modules on the ship that were destroyed, but as the value of the ship is based on market price aggregates, I couldn't really speak to the surety of this.  For the purposes of this little experiment, I'll use round numbers for ease of matriculation.

     So, take a T1 ship worth 100 million isk. 
- top level insurance on that ship will cost roughly 20 million isk.  That level of insurance means you will get 80 million isk back if the ship is destroyed by mis-adventure or assholery.
- if you don't insure the ship, and it gets destroyed, you get roughly 20 million back in the form of un-insured insurance.
- if the ship is insured, the "uninsured" value of the ship is 20 million.  If the ship isn't insured, the uninsured value of the ship is 80 million.
- the bounty paid out in both examples is 4 million for an insured ship, and 16 million for an uninsured one.
- the total isk loss for the insured ship is 40 million (because of the extra cost of the insurance) and 80 million for the uninsured ship.

     Got the numbers straight?  There'll be a test later.

     Now, each time a ship is destroyed, 20% of the uninsured value of the ship is subtracted from the total bounty.  So on a 500 million bounty, it drops to 496 million isk for the insured ship, or 486 million for the uninsured ship loss.  Don't need to a be a rocket sturgeon to figure that out.  What isn't as obvious, is what the ACTUAL cost of a bounty is.  How much does it REALLY cost the player?  In this 500 million example, the "actual" cost of the bounty can be quickly calculated.  Best case scenario, at a 1/5th payout rate, it'll cost the bountied player

Insured - if all the ships bought are 100 million isk ships, we know that we lose 40 million isk and the bounty payout is 4 million per loss.  500 million/4 million = 125.  That means that the bountied player would need to buy roughly 12.5 BILLION isk worth of ships to clear the bounty, and that also means that the total isk loss from 125 destroyed ships will amount to 5 billion, 10 times the amount of the bounty.

Uninsured - if all the ships bought are 100 million isk ships, we know that we lose 80 million isk and the bounty payout is 16 million per loss. 500 million/16 million = 31.25.  Rounding it down to 31, that means the player would need to buy 3.1 billion isk worth of ships, never insure them, and then the total isk loss from 31 destroyed ships will amount to about 2.5 billion, or about 5 times the amount of the bounty.

     I'm not rich enough or motivated enough to test if these 5x and 10x ratios extrapolate to most ship types, but I imagine they'd be close for the rest of the T1 ships.  For T2 ships, the losses would definitely be higher because insurance sucks and costs are higher.  That might mean a faster payout, but the total loss for the bountied player is still multiples of the actual bounty.  Also, just like with belt rats, player bounties are shared with all fleet members.  If the bountied player gets podded at the same time, that's more of a loss and I don't know how much more bounty, if any, is paid out for that.

     So, if CCP had a clue, bounties would, and could only, be applied to people with negative sec status.  You don't get a negative sec status unless you did, or tried to, fuck someone.  "But what about gankers/can flippers/thieves?" you might inquire.  Well, if they go flashy, that means they took a sec status hit, they are open to be killed by anyone, and, you could lay a bounty on their ass while they are all flashy, plus, you could/can sell the kill rights.  Assholes can grind sec status too.

     "So what about scammers and thieves that don't go flashy?" you ask.  Well, CCP needs to stop and actually think and come up with some method to deal with those, or not.  It's these . . . "features" of their game that are keeping teh regular online gaming crowd away from Eve . . . in droves.

     Bounties on corps and alliances are fine.  If that helps encourage pvp, so be it.  That's not the same as an individual bounty because a player can shed a corp/alliance bounty by leaving said organization.  A personal bounty however, is permanent until it is gone, or low enough to not be a motivator for someone to kill you.

     If a player is an asshole, I'm fine with the bounty system the way it is.  Unfortunately, it's another poorly thought out mechanism for griefers to fuck with people, and this time, there is no way to defend against it.  it's permanent.  I've read that players have left because of it.  No doubt.  Too bad the ship re balancing guy didn't look at the bounties too instead of whatever moron Hilmarr had do it.  Fail.

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