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Today’s Connection Issues to Eve

 

Today we saw a large outage to CCP’s servers in London as the number of BGP routes advertised on the Internet passed a critical milestone. If you are unfamiliar with BGP, the easiest definition is that it is the protocol used to allow major ISPs to talk to each-other and share information on where to send traffic in order for it to reach its destination. Without ISPs peering using BGP, routers would not know to send traffic and nothing would reach the target host.

Certain models of Cisco routers that have not been modified from their default configuration became unstable after accepting more than 512,000 routes. Users all across the Internet saw strange behavior as routers began to drop traffic, slowly pass traffic through software routing, or crashing entirely. I saw my connection to CCP’s server in London from San Francisco become unreachable for several hours.

2014-08-12_eve_tq

This issue has been written about months ago, but it seems that a lot of people were caught by surprise. There is even a Cisco approved interim fix to buy more time by allocating additional memory space to store additional IPv4 routes (1).

Further reading on this topic can be found on this r/networking post.

(1) CAT 6500 and 7600 Series Routers and Switches TCAM Allocation Adjustment Procedures [link]

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Hello up there?

So, Incursion came out yesterday or so and I’ve been spending all the time since then just playing with the new character editor, which was a pure shining interface of beauty surpassing The Sims in anything it ever aspired to be.

Oh wait.

So, Incursion is not out on the day CCP chiseled in stone on the wall of the Vatican that it would come out.

Wait, no, I’m thinking of some other mandate.

So Incursion is not out on the day that CCP said that it would come out. In hindsight we probably should have expected this from the lack of an Eve trailer. I tried to make my own by staring at the show info screen of a nightmare and spinning it around a few times, but instead of the elation that usually comes with a new trailer all that I got was soft weeping.

So CCP has accidentally projected a deadline and not met it. I think this is a good thing.

Admitted, I want a sansha mothership NAO, but… every six months?

Really? Is that enough time? To maintain a grand scale MMO, shitloads of electronics and programs and mechanics, not knowing if any tiny change you make to a single line will fuck everything up or not, while all the while people your living depends on complains about almost literally everything you do and don’t do.

Good expansions take time and thought. I’m not saying that the expanions that a few some a couple most people didn’t like didn’t take time. They just didn’t work for some reason.

Fecked if I know why, I’m in the wrong major for that.

But anywho, CCP is spending more time on an expansion instead of releasing it on time early. And since they’re not actually CHARGING for this thing, there’s no marketing pressure to release before christmas.

So, CCP, I’m going to tag this post with as many Eve Tags as possible to try and get your attention probably just tweet fallout to say this:

“Take as much time as you have to, please don’t break anything.”

“P.S. more trailers”


I wish I was consistent too. CSM!

So, Mynxee and A-something have both posted their retrospective on the CSM meeting.

After having read both of them, it’s gratifying to see that the CSM we have elected perfectly portrays thousads of whiny forum goers in the important facets. More on that later.

Both of the CSM people seemed to say the same thing: CCP is working on Dust and Incarna right now and doesn’t have the time to fix your lowsec/poses/FW/nullsec/ectera.

I feel this makes sense. CCP’s been hyping dust/incarna for a good while now, and I think that by this point everyone inside and out of CCP just wants to get the fugger out the door and be done with it. While still making it excellent or passable, tho.

Looking at PI insofar, I’m worried Dust’s gonna flop. Insofar, the trailers have depicted huge battles controlled by space generals over planets for the glory of all yeah yeah blah blah blah. That works, by itself, assuming the space generals don’t have so many idiots hiring people so that the FPS players in general don’t completley ignore their generals in favor of murder, along with the two economies being a bitch to manage. On top of all that, here’s Dust’s main problem: Planets are big.

If someone were to magically come into my C1 WH and drop down a command center, there is no mechanic in place to stop him from doing so. I would completely be at his mercy in terms of wherever he wanted to do insofar of him…. making my planets look ugly, I guess. Again, I’m sure CCP will make planets more important eventually or just dedicate Dust to dealing with the the silly little highsec carebears fighting tiny little silly wars over dinky little planets with fewer base metals than an alkaline convention.

I’ve gone off track a little. In any case, on the CSM thing:
Mynxee seems to be a tad upset that CSM isn’t coming into CCP and saying “jump” and CCP isn’t jumping, citing they don’t get enough attention as stakeholders which apparently CCP has made them.

If a product has been working for, what, six years, do you think the average shareholder is going to tell the company how to run things? Being a shareholder doesn’t grant you magical CCP changing abilities, but it probably should allow you some more insight into CCP’s “what we’re working on now” shizzle. Which is what the CSM seems to have gotten in the form of new devblogs.

Working as intended \o/

For those who say being a stakeholder means having a say in the company, here’s a link to the wikipedia article.

My theory is really that CCP is a bit scared of change. If you were to walk up to, say, Coca Cola, and say that about a half pound of sugar in two liters of Mountain Dew is a bit much, they’d shove you out the door with nary a goodbye, assuming you could get in in the first place. I don’t think I need to remind you of new coke.

Oh, and on tyrannis 1.0.3 patch notes:

The Planetary Commodities cargo hold on the Primae couldn’t be loaded with Water or Oxygen. It can now.

How’d they figure that out, someone actually used that thing for PI?


The not-so-great deep safe analysis.

Before I start, if anyone reading this sees TeaDaze, tell him I said “I told you so”.

Early on, when we were still drafting plans for mining in the static C5, one of the major problems was that hauling the ore through the connecting WH would slowly whittle down the mass to the point that we might not be able to fit the Hulks, Orca, ectera back through, condeming them to a lifetime of trying to build a scan probe launcher out of spare parts, and when that failed, crashing each ship into a separate planet and re-creating civilization, prospering on individual planets until inter-planet contact is established, at which point a war is sparked. This commits each population to the destruction of the other, draining each planet of resources to construct vessels of war, which are launched into space only to be loaded onto my Orca, and shipped to Jita while holoreels of old spaceship battles are shipped back to the population, with all news networks carefully manipulated to keep the war going indefinitely…..

Wait, sorry, that’s my Tyrannis plan. Anyway, an alternate solution of making a deep, deep safespot and having the rorqual compress ore on site in safety was one of our “really good ideas”, which, unfortunately, will soon be impossible since to the disabling of said exploit, which is at the top of CCP’s “fix now” list, instead of some other things that I remember being upset about but apparently I’m not passionate enough about to remember. The one legitimate reason for nerfing deep safes I’ve heard so far are some people in null are putting their Dominion shoot-me-to-take-system thingys way out there making warping to them difficult. Oh, and it’s an exploit.

The more enjoyable explanation, in my opinion, is that CCP is trying to discourage blob warfare by making it unfeasible from a lag standpoint, encouraging hit-and-run groups attacking several strategic areas instead of 300 man cap fleets eliminating everything so fast they redefine the word “superior firepower”. But hey, that’s just the ramblings of someone who thinks a bit too much into these things.

The 20 AU limit seems fair, as the only non-exploiting way to get that far now is flying an interceptor in the preferred direction for several years, the major point being that there is no longer anywhere convenient to stuff a large cap fleet while their grid loads. See aforementioned conspiracy theory.

Anyway, cataclysmic variable did a much more serious analysis, but I disagree on his conclusion that “We have the power to change this game”.

The end result, deep safes unusable, is still going to happen. We’ve managed to achieve “we’ll move the ships” instead of “we’ll blow up the ships”, but there is still no-where to park a supercapital and there still will be no way to exit out mid-warp when you realize you’re warping into a gatecamp/death. You can say “we changed things”, but really, what’s different? The five people who quit Eve while in a safespot and didn’t leave any contact information with friends lose a ship that they apparently don’t care about.

It will still be impossible to fight on a grandiose scale without lag occurring, and now grid loading issues will be crippling because when a cyno is lit in a system with a defending fleet, the defending fleet will warp to that cyno, the attacking fleet will have grid load issues, ectera.

So, the three options are either have the attacking fleet in system BEFORE the defending fleet, or attack several points at once, or don’t use blobs. See CCP Conspiracy theory. Also, it’s probably worth noting that on all the forum’s I’ve read, the devs only respond to questions not including the phrase “Fix the lag before you fix deep safes”. COINCIDENCE?

Also, CCP has THREE letters, but only TWO Cs. COINCIDENCE? I think NOT!

The Icelandic volcano has shut down European air travel the same day deep safe nerfs were announced. COINCIDENCE?

I’m hungry, so I shall go make a sandwich. COINCIDENCE?


The problem with immersion

It’s been a while since any talk of walking in stations, so I thought that I’d stir up the riverbed.

The problem and fix, in CCPs esteemed opinion, is that players think of their ship as their avatar, and to fix that they’re going to give us all 3D avatars of whatever characters we made at the beginning of our respective careers, presumably wearing the same face that you see in profile, which should lead to some interesting in-station conversations with someone constantly looking to your right.

Anyway, I’d like to say that walking in stations is a horrible idea in any way it could be implemented, but I’m confident that CCP has thought of something I haven’t and everything will work out. Based on the information I have currently, however, I’m fairly certain Incarna is going to be horrible.

The first, and most glaring issue I have is the trade system. Currently, you dock and whatever items you wish to buy or sell are magically sold and/or bought, the moment you dock.

Magically.

In a walking in stations world, you would have to leave your ship and walk to the market, and perhaps stop by the gift shop on your way out. This will only serve to add another step to the buy low, fly somewhere, sell high process, alternatively the buy at high prices, go off and get killed, buy another damn ship process. I think that the twitchy ADD sufferer in all of us will agree that adding more steps to any process that must be accessed several times a day will become irritating.

Alternatively, CCP could visualize the mountain of complaints from the twitchy people and make it so that you wouldn’t have to leave your ship for trading, ensuring that 95% of the people would never leave their ships, since the only reason they docked in this station out in the boondocks was for the cheapest vexor in the region. Considering this would be the equivalent of hiding all the work they’ve been doing on this project for who knows how many years under a black tarp,  I’d guess that most of the designers would stick their hands in icelandic/russian/shanghai beehives (second and third varieties exceptionally painful, bees that can make hives out of metal and ice sound scary as hell)  before not making us notice the work they’ve been doing.

After watching the minute twenty second section of CCP talking about walking in stations last fanfest(@ 53:00), I was filled with more doubt. On the first point of running your own establishment:

Why?

If you want to sell something, you make it as visual and as available as possible. In Eve, this generally means logging in every few hours, cancelling your sell orders and relisting them as .01 ISK less than the jerk who undercut you by .01 ISK. You do not bury your stuff inside a station and make someone walk there by themselves when they are already trying to buy that nanite paste and get out as fast as they can. Now, if they used the establishment as, say, a trophy room, that could work.

Hunting NPC outlaws:

With what? Will my gunnery skill translate into a pistol? Will I have five hobgoblin IIs following me wherever I go?(If so, walking in stations is going to be BADASS). Or will I use some sort of diplomacy to convince someone with a bounty on their head to turn themselves in? Again, either it’s not as profitable as ninja salvaging or something else that a new char could do, and no-one does it, or it is more profitable and people do it and complain about how silly it is.

Gambling:

That Eve poker thingy. Already have it. Alternativley, this might actually work, assuming there’ a craps table that has billions of ISK in liquid form for when that rich dude finally wins.

I admit, the option to walk around gleaming steel and see others walking around, maybe talk to them, and possibly have to walk to the clone bay will be pretty immersive, but again, all it’s doing is adding unnecessary steps to the standard processes we use today. I’m open to walking in stations being a good plan but it seems less and less likley the closer it comes.