Knowing The Neighborhood

I view familiarity as something that comes with an expiration date. If you don’t visit an area for a long period of time, or if you take a break from Eve as I have, much of what you know about a given area may be obsolete.

In one sense, I can learn everything about (the features of) a system itself simply by studying a map. I can count the belts, see the “true sec” rating, check for outposts, monitor frequent jumps and even see the average number of pilots in local.

In my opinion, this information – while important when deciding where to look for targets – is far less valuable when dealing with the threat of local defense gangs.

If you can focus your attention on a particular region and its regular inhabitants for long periods of time, you will gradually begin to successfully predict certain behaviors from the locals with increasing regularity.

There is a certain system in Catch where a particular Russian  sits in his typhoon, day after day, waiting at the edge of a drag bubble with his smarties ready to melt the first scout to foolishly warp to the gate he so frequently lurks behind. Most first-time visitors to that system while he is around take the clone-bay express home.

It is my opinion that having an accurate sense of what to expect on your chosen route through a particular area (beyond the mere celestial features)  is one of the single most valuable advantages an experienced scout or fleet commander. It is also often overlooked.

For example, when roaming through Providence during the days of CVA dominance, I knew that certain timezones would bring high levels of risk to my roaming gangs.

Furthermore, I knew the favorite systems for local residents to setup camps and at exactly what point they would be told to back off their pursuit by the local FCs.

As a quick example, during Euro Prime, I would typically avoid traveling the “short way” from R3-K to S9X, as it is a path with limited branches and the local residents would nearly always rush to jump-bridge ahead of us.

Finally, a word of warning. It is important to remember that human players are… human. Even the act of observing, merely being in local, can change how the locals behave. Just because you haven’t had difficulty in a system before, doesn’t mean it will always be  safe in the future.

Attempting to rely exclusively on past experience in an area will certainly lead to poor decision-making, but when put into proper context, this “familiarity” can also be an invaluable method of predicting and planning for possible obstacles.

[05:49:08] Hodaddy > Blackops Gang ~12 in  <b><url=showinfo:5//30004731>JP4-AA Solar System</url></b>
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2 Responses to “Knowing The Neighborhood”

  1. Ahhh. The good old days of CVA roaming. All is gone Easley. Time to move on and find new stomping grounds. Honor the memories by making new ones.

  2. Prov was a good example, but the principle is the applicable anywhere. The more you know an area, the better your results will be roaming and taking on local fleets.

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