the imperium

EVE Online political betrayal results in record-breaking theft

The EVE Online twitterverse exploded late last night with the news of a political twist so enormous that it’s become the largest recorded theft of in-game assets in the game’s history. In the middle of the night and without warning, major EVE military alliance Circle of Two (or CO2 for short) was betrayed by its diplomatic officer, a player with the ominous name of The Judge. In addition to cleaning out the alliance war funds and assets to the tune of over a trillion ISK, The Judge also transferred ownership of CO2’s 300 billion ISK keepstar citadel in its capital star system of 68FT-6 to a holding corporation, effectively stealing the alliance’s home space station.

News of The Judge’s betrayal trickled out of EVE all through the night, and it wasn’t long before the full extent of the incident was known. The 68FT-6 keepstar was sold to enemy alliance Goonswarm Federation, while CO2’s smaller citadels throughout Impass are now in the hands of TEST Alliance. The theft combined with the value of the citadels is estimated at over 1.5 trillion ISK, easily beating the 2011 trillion ISK Phaser Inc scam to become the highest-value theft in EVE‘s history. The actual damage done is even more extensive, injecting a huge dose of chaos into CO2 alliance and throwing fuel on the fire of the southern war.

Read on for a detailed breakdown of last night’s record-breaking theft, the reasons behind the betrayal, and the political situation that led us here.

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EVE Evolved: The strategy and narrative of EVE’s revenge war

At the start of this month, we reported on a massive new war that was kicking off in the north of EVE Online. The words “The Imperium Strikes Back!” rang across the game as one of the game’s largest military coalitions moved thousands of capital ships north in preparation for what it called a “dirty war.” The group planned to dump hordes of capital ships on the enemy aggressively and with little regard of the financial cost, using its vast economic wealth to spread pain and misery. This was going to be The Imperium’s great return to nullsec warfare after a year of farming ISK and building up resources, and that narrative was used to get thousands of players on board.

The reality hasn’t been quite so dramatic, but it’s been very interesting on a strategic level. We’ve seen the narrative of this war change substantially over the past few weeks and watched as every victory or loss is quickly spun into propaganda. The Imperium has lost several key battles and appears totally outmatched by the combined supercapital forces of the north, but has also destroyed a few enemy citadels and is already claiming victory over its primary strategic objective. TEST Alliance has seen its own share of victories and defeats in the region against Northern Coalition and Pandemic Legion too, but is now in the process of packing up to go home.

In this edition of EVE Evolved, I examine the major strategic goals during this war, the apparent change in The Imperium’s narrative, and the effect on the average alliance line member.

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EVE Online revenge war update: The war machine stalls

Last week we brought you the news of a massive new war brewing in the north of EVE Online, and The Imperium’s threat of revenge to the alliances that live there. The Imperium has been farming hard in the southern Delve region for months and has built up a massive war chest since it was kicked out of its northern territory during the colossal World War Bee conflict last year. Meanwhile, military alliance Pandemic Legion has been throwing its weight around all over nullsec, interfering in TEST Alliance’s war with Guardians of the Galaxy in the north and dropping supercapital fleets on The Imperium in the south.

The revenge war kicked off as The Imperium formed a pact with TEST Alliance and then moved over 1,000 capital ships to a staging system in the low-security system of Hakonen in the north of EVE. This war seems to be mostly about creating engaging PvP content, but for The Imperium it’s also an opportunity to get revenge on those who sided against them during World War Bee. For TEST Alliance, it’s a continuation of its conflict with the Guardians of the Galaxy coalition and perhaps a way to give Pandemic Legion the bloody nose it deserves.

This week has seen some interesting developments in the war, with several failed attempts to anchor citadels and possible strategic blunders and supply issues. Read on for a breakdown of the latest in EVE Online‘s latest revenge war.

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EVE Evolved: A massive war for revenge is brewing in EVE Online

Just over a year ago, the largest PvP conflict in gaming history kicked off in EVE Online as war erupted between the game’s most prominent territorial alliances. Over 60,000 pilots were initially drawn into the interstellar war that came to be known as World War Bee or The Casino War, and thousands of ex-players and newbies signed up during the war just to get involved. We followed the landmark battles and political twists of World War Bee intently for several months as it unfolded like a living work of science fiction. Our coverage ended with The Imperium, a large military coalition led by alliance Goonswarm Federation, being kicked out of its territory in the north of EVE and losing thousands of members and allies.

The story could have ended there as alliances often collapse following a major defeat (in what players affectionately refer to as a “failure cascade”), but the core of The Imperium stuck together and vowed to one day get revenge. The group has since managed to conquer and hold the lucrative Delve region in the south of EVE and has been farming resources en masse for months, rebuilding its war chest and waiting for an opportunity for revenge. It looks like that moment has now arrived, as the group has reportedly moved a huge fleet up north to a staging system within striking distance of its former home.

In this edition of EVE Evolved, I look at how the war brewing in the north of EVE got started and what shape it might take over the coming weeks.

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EVE Online war update: The Imperium loses its territory

Last month we brought you several war reports from the massive EVE Online conflict that’s come to be known as World War Bee. After years of being the game’s largest and most dominant military power, EVE coalition The Imperium found itself outnumbered and under attack by a loose band of alliances named the Moneybadger Coalition. The war began to attract media interest at the end of March when it became clear that it was likely the largest PvP conflict in gaming history and that the war was being bankrolled by a super-wealthy player with a grudge.

The first few weeks of the war were a whirlwind of activity, with fleets of thousands of players clashing in the M-OEE8 and UQ9-3C systems and players returning to EVE in their thousands to take part. Things slowly began to die down as The Imperium abandoned its nullsec territories, retreated to the low-security system of Saranen, and began deliberately avoiding fights in an effort to starve the enemy of entertainment. Things didn’t exactly go to plan, however, as the now-shattered Imperium lost thousands of pilots and more recently all of its nullsec territory. The war has now transmuted into a game of pure strategic warfare as both sides attempt to deal as much ISK damage to each other as possible with the lowest cost.

Read on for a short update on World War Bee, which alliances are losing or gaining the most members, and how the release of citadels has affected the war.

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EVE Online war update: Thousands return to join the war

For the past week we’ve been closely following the events of a monumental war that has kicked off in sci-fi MMO EVE Online. The conflict that has come to be known as “World War Bee” has recently exploded into the largest PvP war in gaming history, with thousands of players taking sides and forming massive fleets. The war began with the game’s largest military power (known as CFC or The Imperium) invading low-security space to capture moons from the fractured alliances that lived there. In an unexpected move, those alliances put their differences aside and joined forces to repel the Imperium forces, then took the fight to the coalition’s home.

The war took a quick and interesting turn following this when Imperium alliance Circle of Two severed all ties with its masters and joined the attacking Moneybadger Coalition, bringing with it military secrets such as the locations of supercapital shipyards. The politics and fleet movements in World War Bee have proceeded at a rapid pace ever since, with both sides attempting to spin the narrative of the war in their favour and adapting their strategies to counter the other. Yet the most impressive news to come out of the war is undoubtedly the spike in player activity and new player signups over the past few days, as each day breaks new PvP records and thousands of players return to kick some serious space ass.

Read on for an update on the EVE Online war, from the shifting strategies of the attacking coalitions to the effect on player activity and the distinct narrative of good versus evil that’s playing out in-game.

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EVE Evolved: How did World War Bee start and where is it going?

Throughout the almost nine years I’ve been covering EVE Online in the gaming media, I’ve been continually amazed at the sheer scale and impact of events that happen in the sandbox. The fact that everything happens in one massive shardless universe lends events in EVE a kind of tangibility that is rarely felt in an MMO, with the effects of huge battles and record-breaking heists rippling throughout the game world and potentially affecting every player. Right now the whole New Eden cluster is ablaze with talk of the largest war ever to kick off in EVE Online or indeed gaming in general, a war that has come to be known as World War Bee.

We’ve been covering this ongoing war between EVE‘s largest military coalition (called CFC or The Imperium) and its collective enemies (known as The Allies or the Moneybadger Coalition), and so far it’s had some pretty epic twists and fights. But what actually caused World War Bee, what are the events that led to the Moneybadger Coalition coming together, and how does The Imperium plan to fight this war in the long term? With the wider gaming world peering on as EVE alliances smash huge fleets together in deep space over ideals and past grudges, now is a good opportunity to explore those questions.

In this edition of EVE Evolved, I delve into the events that many in the EVE community believe are responsible for World War Bee and get an update on its progress and The Imperium’s plans.

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EVE Online war update: The Imperium defends UQ9-3C, loses station

If you’ve been following the EVE Online news recently, you’ll have heard about the colossal war that has kicked off between the game’s largest military coalition (known as CFC or The Imperium) and a horde of its enemies collectively known as The Allies or Moneybadger Coalition. It’s estimated that over 60,000 pilots are embroiled in the war, and that number is growing by the day as both sides continue to swell their ranks. In the first article on this war, I looked at some of the events that led up to the conflict and details of the opening salvo in what has become the largest PvP war in gaming history.

The first few days of the recent war effort have seen some huge fights and political twists, with Moneybadger Coalition initially destroying the infrastructure hub in M-OEE8 and major military alliance Circle of Two severing ties with The Imperium. Yesterday saw further fighting with major clashes over the Imperium station in the UQ9-3C system and The Imperium announcing a new set of strategies in hopes of countering the superior size of the enemy fleets.

Read on for an update on the second major day of fighting from what has now come to be known as World War Bee.

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The largest PvP war in gaming history has begun in EVE Online

Sci-fi MMO EVE Online has had no shortage of huge battles in its lifetime, from the world-record-breaking 3,110 player battle in 2010 to the Battle of Asakai in 2013 and the now-famous Bloodbath of B-R5RB in 2014, in which the equivalent of $310,000 USD of ships went up in smoke. There’s something about the stories of colossal battles, political dealings, underhanded scams and record-breaking heists in EVE Online that manages to grab the attention of the gaming world. People look on with a mixture of awe and schadenfreude as players in the world’s biggest sandbox MMO roll the dice and someone loses big-time.

New Eden has actually been pretty quiet for the past two years, but things began heating up recently when the largest military coalition (known as CFC or The Imperium) decided to invade low-security space. The CFC has largely been considered undefeatable due to the sheer number of ships it can bring to a fight, so when the group decided to capture valuable moons held by lowsec alliances, everyone expected only one outcome. What actually happened was a series of escalating events like something out of a really great sci-fi novel, and it’s led to the largest PvP war in gaming history, with over 60,000 players around the world choosing sides.

Read on for a brief overview of how the war started and a video update on how gaming’s largest war has gone so far.

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EVE Evolved: The war for Providence

In the previous edition of EVE Evolved, I looked at how the state of PvP in EVE Online has changed since the Aegis Sovereignty overhaul and asked whether it’s been a success. Players quickly started adapting to the new system and reported getting a lot more fights, with some smaller alliances even managing to capture space from established entities. Small fleets found themselves able to kick down another alliance’s space doors and become a credible threat, being rewarded with either a good fight or an opportunity to capture something. Station capture events also naturally became beacons to third parties that signaled a big fight was about to go down, and huge alliances discovered that they could no longer easily hold space they don’t use. The day-to-day PvP in alliance territories seemed be massively improved, but we had yet to see an actual turf war using the new mechanics

Since then we’ve got our first taste of a real territorial war with the battle for the Providence region. Alliance theorycrafters have been drawing up experimental fleet doctrines and battle plans since Aegis landed, and at the end of August we got to see them tested on a real battlefield. The Imperium announced plans to mobilise its forces to conquer Providence as a way of testing new strategies and gaining experience with the new sovereignty mechanics, and it wasn’t long before other major groups like TEST Alliance and Legion of xXDEATHXx joined the fray. The results of the battle were very illuminating, with people having a lot more fun than expected and the defender’s advantage being thoroughly tested. We also saw how capital ships have lost their roles in today’s territorial warfare, which was expected as CCP has already stated that a full capital ship rework is coming.

In this edition of EVE Evolved, I look at how the recent war in Providence played out and give my views on why capital ships have lost their roles in the new territorial warfare dynamic.

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