CSMX Candidates Quizzed: Alyxportur

A few years ago, I ran a questionnaire for CSM candidates regarding lowsec. This year, I’ve decided to do the same, with a twist: there is now a bonus round of questions tailored to each individual candidate that fills out the questionnaire. As quickly as I can, I’ll be posting up their responses: without edit or commentary. Next into the questionnaire octagon is Alyxportur from Delve.

Character Name: Alyxportur

Candidacy Thread: Alyxportur for CSM X

PART 1 – The Questionnaire

What single part of the game do you feel requires the most work in terms of iteration by CCP?

Corporate/role management

Do you feel that lowsec is ‘fixed’? If so, explain why. If not, explain what you want to see done to fix it.

Whether you mean fixed because there was a problem or fixed as in ‘static’, my answer to both is no. EVE is not a static game and things change both by updates and player influence or use of the space. While it may be underutilized, that doesn’t mean it needs fixing or any additions to make it more appealing just for the sake of trying to get more players to live there. I am not a lowsec resident; I live in nullsec, so I would defer on any changes to the region to the representatives who live in the area, such as Sugar Kyle.

Do you have any plans to push CCP, if elected, to iterate on lowsec in general?

The biggest changes to EVE which I support and which would affect lowsec the most would probably be POS plans and PI layouts. I iterate my ideas more in my campaign thread, but tl;dr is being able to save and reuse POS and planet structure layouts for future PI planets or POSes. Just like saving, reusing, and even sharing ship fits, the addition of both these mechanics would benefit the majority of EVE players and eliminate a lot of useless tedium that bears no impact on players other than to frustrate them.

In your opinion, where should lowsec rank in terms of priority for iteration by CCP?

In terms of regionality, I would have to rank lowsec less than nullsec at the moment. Post-Phoebe nullsec is stagnant while awaiting the last two parts of sovereignty changes and I want to see that finished before CCP refocuses attention elsewhere. After sov changes are finished, I would still prioritize lowsec beneath the outstanding issues that all of EVE would benefit from such as corporation/role management changes and POS mechanic changes.

What, in your opinion, are the main factors that make lowsec more attractive to its current residents than other areas of space?

From my limited experience (~6 months spent there several years ago), I’d say players who live there like it because there’s danger, but not so much that it requires participation in and support of multiple alliances to live there. Lowsec has different opportunities than highsec or nullsec, and it has different types of danger. Nullsec sov space is time intensive, but lowsec doesn’t have to be while still providing a lot of similar PVP and PVE fun.

What is your thinking regarding piracy in lowsec – is it good, bad, or ugly?

From a lore perspective, I’m surprised the factions haven’t gotten enough complaints to upgrade gate and station guns. In terms of pure gameplay, it’s lowsec NOT highsec, so PVP content is a part of the life. Players shouldn’t go to lowsec without expecting to be challenged and/or killed. It’s low security with a warning dialogue box for a reason.

What are your thoughts on the notion that increased protection for PVE players in lowsec will result in a better lowsec?

If they want protected PVE they can mission in highsec or rent from Northern Associates[dot] in nullsec. Lowsec is an ongoing challenge to the players who live there, and who seem to love the adversity. I wouldn’t want to see PVE protected more for a region meant to be less secure, but I would support additional, challenging and dangerous PVE content for the area.

What are your thoughts regarding Faction Warfare, particularly the idea that FW is the killer feature of lowsec?

I’ve never been a member of FW, but I’ve done some frigate brawls with a few of my PVP characters which were fun. I think FW satisfies many players’ appetites for small to medium scale warfare similar to nullsec sov warfare, but without as much blobbing. FW space is meaningful in a different way than the rest of lowsec, but not necessarily better when it comes to a player perspective. We all pick different places to live based on the play styles we love and the time we’re able to play the game.

If elected to CSMX and subsequently informed by CCP that lowsec was the ‘hot topic’ for iteration in the coming year, what input and advice would you have for them?

I’d ask them to finish up their changes to nullsec sov first (if they didn’t have that done by then), and then I’d complain about how they could be spending their time on more important and actual problems like corp/role management. Then I’d shut up and help as much as I could to give input on any changes despite my deficiencies in the area. From my perspective as a player, it’s rarely possible to change CCP’s mind once they’ve announced a development plan, so working with them to make the changes good for players is the best way to be of service.

BONUS – What lengths are you willing to go to in order to make pirates flashy red on overview by default again?

I wouldn’t have an issue with supporting it to be enabled by default. Personally, I would support a new player tutorial that explains overview settings and functionality. It’s an important part of the game and might lead new players to ask questions like ‘Where can I find a pirate?’.

PART 2 – The Interview

What’s your personal background, in real life? What kind of work are you in? Does it help your chances of election, in your opinion? Why or why not?

I’m a graduate student finishing up an MA in Geography. At the moment I help professors in my department with their classes. I don’t think knowing my personal background/work will help or hurt my chances in the election, but I do think that if I win, my background will help make me a better CSM representative. I can analyze problems and look at them from a broader perspective, as if EVE is a country that needs to be financially stable with a sustainable and growing population.

If you weren’t running, but you could single-handedly ensure that any other person in EVE would be elected to CSM, who would you pick and why.

Sugar Kyle. While I may not know much about lowsec, she certainly does. I hope she runs and wins every year as long as she plays the game. It’s easy to see how much she cares about the long-term health of EVE, and that is needed one every iteration of the CSM.

Other than EVE, what was your favorite game last year (2014)?

Clash of Clans. An army friend got me into it and it’s great for those long warps in 90% TiDi.

What was your experience with lowsec in the past?

Minimal. I spent a few months in lowsec prior to going to sov nullsec. I mined some and did a little PVP, but was mainly there to just hang out with some friends. They’re the ones I initially joined in moving to nullsec.

What kind of “additional, challenging and dangerous PVE content” would you like to see brought to lowsec?

I’m not very familiar with lowsec so until I spoke with someone like Sugar Kyle and got her feedback on whether lowsec has enough income streams, I wouldn’t have any suggestions. There are probably some income streams that already exist which could be updated with additional difficulty or challenges… I’m a big fan of the hacking games in nullsec.

What did you learn from your run for CSM 9 that you think will help you this year?

Publicity is necessary to get votes.

What marks you apart from the plethora of nullsec candidates running this year, other than your alliance ticker?

My personality and perspective on EVE… but that’s going to be different for every single candidate on the ballot. If you’re asking what I think makes me uniquely appealing, I’d say that I’m a nice guy who likes to listen, enjoys giving thoughtful feedback, and want to see everyone enjoy the game even if it’s not the part of space that I enjoy.

In your opinion, what could be done to encourage a more active pursuit of kill rights (i.e. true bounty hunting) as opposed to the current common theme of stumbling upon people and reaping some side benefits for an action you were already going to commit?

Non-expiring bounties. I’d propose changing the bounty system so that they never expire until the bounty is claimed, but the person who put the bounty on someone should be able to remove it as well. I think the bounty system could also be integrated into the locator agent system so that ‘hunting’ is more of a career than a difficult hobby.

Do you think that attributes should be removed entirely from EVE Online? If so, why. If not, what do attributes contribute in terms of valuable game play that warrant them staying?

No, I don’t. They’re useful, but under-used. I think CCP needs to change the current skill queue some more so that skillbooks can be injected at skill level 0, but not trainable until the prerequisites are trained. A tutorial for new players explaining the skill queue, character attributes impact on skill training, and training implants should be thorough. Under-use shouldn’t be misinterpreted as ‘useless’. Lack of knowledge can be remedied with education.

Your campaign thread seems to be floundering a bit, suffering from a drought in terms of attention. Do you feel you have a better shot this year than you did last? If you fail, will you run again next year?

If I have the time next year, I’ll run again. People with things to say online tend to generally be at one end or the other of the agree/disagree spectrum. The other candidates getting questions and giving good answers deserve attention. They may be better candidates than me in general, and some are certainly better than me for players looking for regional representatives of wormhole or lowsec space. I do think that I have a better chance this year than last.

What is your stance on off-grid boosting? Do you think it is a valid game play mechanic, as (in your words) “off-grid t3 boosts are not completely invulnerable,” or would you like to see changes made to force them to be active participants in fights?

It’s part of the game mechanics at the moment, but I think it gives older players a distinct advantage over newer ones. The only suggestion that I’ve heard for nerfing them that I didn’t disagree with is that they could have a nerf to their bonuses based on range. In other words, the further a player is from the booster, the lower his bonuses would be. This wouldn’t necessarily force boosters on-grid since there are tons of broken grids across EVE. I suppose the players who sell Virtue sets would be unhappy though.

Finally, if voters knew nothing else about you, what would you want that one thing to be?

Above all else, I want to see corporate management, POS mechanics/management, and planetary interaction updated, changed, or fixed completely rather than patched…. and I would want the changes released quicker than the sov changes which still have yet to fully be implemented while nullsec waits impatiently. My forum campaign thread explains my opinions and suggestions on these things in more detail.