Cloakies

Mike glanced at the local channel as the ‘cane was being reloaded.

“Hmmf, still there eh?”

++what?++

“Sorry, didn’t know I had open comms still.  Was looking at our cloaky guest.”

++Wish there was a way to ruin his day.  If he is off the main lines and cloaked there is no way we can probe him out and space is just too big to have a chance to accidentally bump into him.++

“I wonder if he is even conscious.”

++I send him questions, now and again but he may just be under fleet orders not to answer.++

“Yeah, but the space safety regs forbid automation to the extreme.  What they call ‘bots’ are shut down all the time.”  Mike frowned.  “Of course that is when they are making isk mining or ratting.  But sitting in our systems ought to be considered an advantage as well and we should expect that if they are going to place a ‘morale officer’ here then he should be active in some way.”

++There would be a lot fewer morale officers if that happened.++

“Thing is the separation of an inattentive pilot from a bot.”  Mike rubbed his chin.  “One that couldn’t be gamed like the old ‘open a convo with the fc’ to delay or distract.”

++Maybe look to see if he has done anything in the past three hours?++

Mike shook his head.  “A drinking bird could beat that check, as could a simple bot.  Something more like a simple captcha.  Maybe a math problem . . . something any thinking pilot could do but would trigger an alarm for Concord.  Could force them to dock or be decloaked if they did not answer within a reasonable time along with a syetem wide announcement that it had happened.”

++I would like that.++  Mike could hear the evil glee in the voice.

“I think a lot of people would.”

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Lessons

I understand the need to go afk sometimes.  Or having a movie on one screen and the game on another.  I also understand having eyes in enemy territory.

10 hours afk cloaking is none of the above.

Not all botting is about isk or minerals.  If CCP is going to crack down on afk gaming then this should be on their hit list as well.

few more days to enter for the draw.  looks like the drawn ship will be a cynabal thanks to the generosity of several members of the Gallente Hero community.

fly it like you won it

m

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16 Responses to Cloakies

  1. Jerod Trd says:

    Something needs to be done about solo-stealth bombers sitting for days on end in a system… I am all for disruption and the sandbox, but being able to disrupt operations for days on end by having a single stealth bomber pilot AFK cloaked in system is insane.

    Maybe a slow buildup of particles if the ship doesn’t warp enabling it to be detected by scanner probes and warped on top of?

  2. Many ideas have been put forward for a way to end afk cloakiness and ‘morale officers’. I think the easiest and most painless one to implement would be a ship designed specificaly to hunt for cloaked vessels.

    Maybe a new t2 destroyer with special probes that can detect cloaked ships and a AOE cloak disruption weapon which does no damage?

    • mikeazariah says:

      I like this idea with the caveat that the % chance changes the longer the ship is cloaked in system. Kind of an addition to Jerrods Particle idea. For the first hour or so, the % chance would be approaching impossible, after that it starts to crawl slowly higher and higher . . .

      m

      • Sounds good to me Mike. I have never lived in Nullsec but the ability to stay cloaked up whilst afk for several hours is just stupid in my opinion. If you are at your keyboard attempting to catch ratters that is fine, but afk cloaking definitely needs addressing in some way and I think my ship idea would be a fair way of doing it – it would allow the cloakers who are NOT afk to move around and avoid getting caught.

        The only issue I see is that the afk cloakers could just setup a macro to bounce them between safespots – but this behaviour would probably be seen as botting by CCP and if they could catch them at it they can kick them out of the game?

  3. Norbert says:

    We just always return the favor…if the enemy has cloakies in our ratting systems, we also put up cloakies in their systems. Normally after a while, a retreat can be arranged…

  4. Ravenzfire says:

    CCP could always put implement a time out feature where if you are just afk and not active your account gets logged off. That would ensure that if anyone was cloaking in a system, you would know they are probably active.

  5. satyrwood says:

    I have to say I was surprised at first when I discovered that EVE doesn’t time out your connection after a certain time. Obviously with EVE you’d need a longer timeout that most MMOs, but it still seems like a good way to deal with situations like this.

  6. Hardin says:

    While I agree afk cloaking has it’s issues, comparing it to botting seems very unfair and brings undeserved implications. So far as I know there is no automation element to afk cloaking. Being in a system for 10 hours just means leaving eve and your character idling in the background while you do something else, which is very different to having a program play eve for you in the background – no?

    I think we should also remember that afk cloaking is pretty much the only way to catch attentative ratters, and while it is somewhat cheap there isn’t much of an alternative. If AFK cloaking is removed, there must be compensation against the safety rise in the form of a change to another game mechanic.

    • mikeazariah says:

      I understand what you are saying and perhaps the comparison to botting was a bit harsh but the critique that afk play is not what ‘the makers planned’ is fair and a connection between the two exist. This also applies to those who do not bot but rat afk with sentry drones being remote repped.

      The only way to catch attentive ratters, fine, give ME a way to catch innatentive cloakers.

      m

      • Bleys says:

        As long as local exists in itsthe current form, then people will use it for intelligence. The other side of this is people shaking in their boots over a red or nuetral in local.

        I have no sympathy for people who want to do away with the “safety” of cloaking. Unless you can prove some is online 24/7, are they really AFK? They could just as easily be multiboxing a whole constellation for intelligence purposes. They could be actively warping around in system to effectively use D-Scan. They could even be mining ice while watching “the pipe” that heads to their mining system. Any number of levels of activity or inactivity are possible, many of which are very legitimate game play.

  7. Pirate John says:

    im all for banning afk stuff
    BUT only if local is removed

    with local as it is, this is the only way to lull people into a false sense of security
    we really dont need more safety in EvE, specialy in null

  8. Jerod Trd says:

    Here we go again.. If you are so desperate to ‘lose local’ then add concord beacons that can be targeted and disabled to ‘disrupt’ the local beacon system… Either by shooting them, or by hacking them… Multiple beacons can be anchored, have them scannable, but not broadcast on the overview (see customs offices and TCUs for examples of broadcast) taking out one of these might knock out local in that system for, say, 3 hours? Taking out 2, drops it for 6 hours, 3 for 12? Make them something that can either be Crippled by a fast-moving cruiser or frigate gang, or hacked by a (formerly) AFK stealth pilot as an enemy force was preparing to cyno in… This would give more small targets to be taken out by small, fast gangs, and add another layer of tactics in the form of information warfare. Counter is onviously that once someone warps to it and engages it (either with weapons or a codebreaker) it announces it’s presence, becomes warpable, and chaos ensues. 🙂

    I’m sure a mix of this and the suggested probability based on time between warps would satisfy most people’s risk/reward demands?

    • Pirate John says:

      derail is a go 😉
      at first look this kinda sounds like fun

      then i realize that these things would be dropped close to a pos making it very hard to do anything about it for a small gang, no to mention solo

      then i realize that its just another thing to grind, be it by guns or hackingtools

      also whenever anything attacked one of these things, everyone and everything would just run for the hills, much like a lot of people do now whenever they see something unfamiliar enter local

      and then i realize i still think that nullsec is way of the mark
      in null where security should be zero, the reality is that most of nullsec is safer than much of highsec, and thats just wrong no matter how you like to spin it

      i dont really care about local or no local, i do care about safety (or rather, lack therof)

      also all the wh people seems able to do just fine without local, i really dont see why the hardened warriors of null would have such a desperate need for that crutch

      • Bleys says:

        ” also all the wh people seems able to do just fine without local, i really dont see why the hardened warriors of null would have such a desperate need for that crutch”

        Exactly.

      • Norbert says:

        Ok accepted.
        But then please remove Stargates and replace them with static wormholes.

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