(Note: I first drafted this letter 2 months ago, in June, when the writing was on the wall about the state of the Caldari Militia. With the joint announcement that both TemplisCALSF and The Bloc have withdrawn from Faction Warfare, I am posting it today. My recommendation here for them to liquidate and combine forces in one alliance may be far too late, and I will be writing more on this topic later this week)
Some of you know me, hate me, like me, or shoot at me on a regular basis. Some of you (probably most of reddit, and many other eve players) have never heard of me before. But I believe that the time has come to make a loud, public statement about the state of play in Faction Warfare, and in particular, the Caldari Militia, from the viewpoint of a competitor in the Gallente Militia.
As the title of this article indicates, this article is written by me, as a player, a human being, that doesn’t harbor any real animous or hostility to the dudes/gals over in the Caldari Militia. I have had some drinks with a few, and many of the older crew in the Caldari Militia embraced me at Fanfest this past year. It is in the interest of the survival of Faction Warfare, and the possibility of a greater sense of competition and content, that I write to you all today.
While nearly all agree that Faction Warfare has long withered on the vine since its introduction in the Empyrean Age expansion of Eve Online in 2008, there has been some modest improvements that have had a significant impact the past few months. With the banning of warp core stabilizers, and deletion of gate-sliding (where a ship of low agility can instantaneously activate an acceleration gate upon landing, and enter a faction warfare site, even while being warp disrupted by an instalocker), the metagame of the warzone has changed. Content and combat is now the true focus of the game, with afk warp core stabbed farming and insta-warping interceptors being reduced to a minimum.
Even before these changes however, the Villore Accords and our Gallente Militia allies instituted something we developed at Fanfest, the “PizzaBox Plan”, named for the Icelandic pizzabox I drunkenly outlined the FW warzone, system by system, and we agreed on offensive priorities. Dismantling the Caldari infrastructure throughout the region was the objective, drawing out larger and bigger fights that would allow our higher skillpoint players to use their ships in a real way. One of the biggest lessons for me as an alliance leader over the past half decade has been that if you do not provide content at a level your players desire it, they will leave to go somewhere else. We needed to act to preserve our manpower and community, and this seemed the best way.
The results of this plan are now evident for all to see. Long term attrition of enemy Citadels, Refineries, and Engineering Complexes, combined with some large scale battles surrounding the most important ones, dealt a severe blow to the Caldari Militia. We were excited and hopeful that they might retaliate, with a system offensive, or perhaps a counterattack on our own structures.
No such attack came.
Instead, the leadership of the Caldari Militia surrendered the initiative, continuously. We had some, minor, sporadic attacks, but they were poorly coordinated and undermanned. We destroyed two Astrahus’s in Vlillirier, along with them several billion isk in Calmil ships, and then began a systemic dismantling of nearby refineries and other structures. No serious offensive came.
When Galmil launched the long-awaited reconquista of our systems throughout Facwar, we encountered mild or minimal resistance. Small gang warfare was the most common, and we welcomed this, as Villore Accords thrives on the fast response times and high skill level of micro/nanogang actions. Pirates also flocked in to the area, attracted to the kills per hour on the map. But before long, we reacquired most of the systems in Placid Region, six or more systems within a handful of days.
Before the reconquest, June 4th.
State of Play, June 29th.
The Caldari Militia’s response was again largely passive. And I will levy the vast majority of the blame at the Templis CALSF and The Bloc leadership team.
Whether they were misguided, unmotivated, or ill informed, the choice to passively lay down while we conducted the offensive has caused catastrophic harm to their organizations. Each week, fewer of their active PVP’ers participate. Major defense fleet operations they form have withered, to the point where they are overwhelmingly outnumbered by Galmil, and are often forced to stand down while structures are killed.
The facts are quite clear at this stage that the inaction of Calmil leadership has led to a steep decline in activity by their players, at all timezones. And a counterattack has still not come.
When the offensives at Eha began, I was utterly astonished to see how little resistance was offered by the Caldari Militia. Over four days, the system went from 0% to full conquest for the Gallente. There were fights every hour of the day for the last few days, however, the Caldari were consistently overmatched and simply didn’t have manpower to support any serious defense.
This comes down to a failure to properly recruit and motivate younger and moderately skilled characters to participate in these kinds of fleets. And even if they had a higher skill player base, they could have conducted guerilla warfare with higher skilled ships such as Omen Navy Issues, or other fast faction ships, to whittle down the Gallente blob. But the same tired tactics of the past were rehashed over and over. Navy Hookbills. Catalysts. Cormorants. Punishers. Over and over again. The result is now clear for all to see.
My recommendation for Calmil at this stage would be to liquidate their existing structure and alliances, and consolidate resources into a strong, central alliance power, to pull together and regroup, and increase their combined strength, while executing a large scale recruitment drive. However, doing so, they must consider the mistakes of the past, and consider new, vital, and motivated leadership willing to lead them back from the brink. The ones they have right now, simply aren’t fit for the job.
Villore Accords Executor