Misquoting the Greats

A Brave Man dies a thousand deaths, a Coward only one.

Yeah you read that right.

I was thinking earlier how in World of Tanks there’s a 1:1 kill/death ratio.  For every person that dies, 1 person killed them.  In EvE that’s not necessarily true.

In EvE you can show up on a dozen killboards, in 200 killmails all from one loss.  Sure only 2 generated (1 kill, and one loss) but every person on it is equally “entitled” to that killmail.  For example:

http://tfhc.eve-kill.net/?a=kill_detail&kll_id=14472021

This guy went in massively outnumbered.  He shows up on at least 4 or 5 different killboards including Battleclinic, Eve-kill, Fancy Hats, Kraken. Templis Dragonaors, and who knows how many others.  The guy he killed?  Well he only shows up on a couple.  On the forums, on the killboards, in the chat channels, on comms, the guy who died against a fleet faces shattered reflections of his loss a thousand times for bravely facing the guns.  The coward hiding in a fleet will rarely face the cost of the two or three losses he faces.

Killboard mentality isn’t the best part of EvE.  It’s one of the down sides in fact.  Players are afraid to lose their standing as much as their ship, no one wants to post ugly lossmails, let alone one that dozens, if not hundreds, of people already know about because they caused it.  In addition fleets are unwilling to undock to face an iffy fight because they don’t want to pollute the killboards with stupid losses.  Innovation is stifled in some alliances as all ships have to be fit to a certain standard and if you can’t, well, you suck.  And you might get booted.

The skewed K/D ratios also affect other things.  In EvE my K/D ratio is 8.28/1 and my isk ratio is 11.42 /1.  Decent for someone who hasn’t done a lot of null, but nothing inhumanly good.  In WoT my K/D rats is a gruesome .73 / 1 (I was actually expecting worse) and my Win/Loss rate is 1.03 (461/447) putting me behind the curve in K/D and slightly ahead in W/L.

EvE already discourages risk-taking.  You lose your ship forever if it’s gone.  Your loss will be known to everyone who showed up to pew it, as they all have a claim on the kill.  WoT with it’s much lower stakes raises the bar.  One person gets the claim on the kill.  I’m not advocating for a change in the game mechanics, but I think it would be neat if EvE-kill and/or battleclinic posted a “Killmails received vs. Killmails handed out” stat.  Assuming EvE Kill gets enough time from their hosting issues to ever do anything other than plug the leaky boat.

Fly Dangerous, forget about killmails.

I’m using it every time I can

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About Corelin

An Eve playing Fool who occasionally writes about the shenanigans he and his minions get up to.

Posted on September 28, 2012, in Meta, PvP. Bookmark the permalink. 8 Comments.

  1. Straight up:

    Never liked killboards, never liked the killboard mentality.

    EVE would be better off without killmails. Nuking them now is impossible, of course. Sadly, the wonks who love them managed to get implants included in kill mails.

    If I had a choice between fixing the technetium problem, supercap proliferation, force-projection issues, Goon ass-hattery, or elimination of killmails, I would take the elimination of killmails in a heartbeat.

    I would even hand back the upcoming POS redesign, if it would mean that killmails would be removed from the game.

    Get rid of the fear of losing ships, the fear of OMG my ratio’s might drop !!, get rid of the fear of the loss stigma, and you will have a far, far, more active universe.

    Its not like EVE is cutthroat and vicious as it is. Do we really need “good boy” achievement awards for each wonk in a blob that trashes a thrasher in a fleet op?

    In my most humble opinion, if killmails are to remain, then simply ensure that they can only be awarded in 1v1 encounters. 1 win, 1 loss.

  2. And killboard stats as an evaluation of your worth, ye gods. Anyone who doesn’t know me would probably reject me based on killboard stats – negative kill/loss ratio, negative ISK ratio.

    I can’t afford to care about it – literally. If I did, the only logical course would be to biomass all characters and reformat my hard drive.

  3. +1 to both Marc and Knug. And you too, Core. I agree that the “killboard mentality” does FAR more to kill the “fun” of EVE than anything else.
    Imagine flying in or with KB-obsessed “l337 PvP” orgs like -A- … lol oh the arguments: “Dude your KB SUCKS, you’re terrible!”
    “Right, because you follow Maka around ‘keep at range’ style, press F1 when he tells you to, and listen to him raeg! at people for not shooting primary still, yes, that takes SO much skill. … And I roam around solo looking for fights I can win, or at least come out ahead in the ISK-war.”

    EVE PvP isn’t even about ‘fun” anymore. It’s about proving your space-penis is bigger than others’, and that’s pretty much 100% thanks to :killboarditis: … and if you’re letting some artificially-blown-up stat ruin your “fun”, I SERIOUSLY have to question how much “fun” you were having in the first place.

  4. Heh, I was on about this a while back. I have been in fleet ops where we have been slaughtered, but have managed to keep my killboard “green” because I have only two losses (ship + pod) but managed to be on at least three kills along with a hundred or so of my closest friends.

    I have seen it go to extremes, with people smart bombing reds and blues alike just to get on as many killmails as possible. And getting people to fly logistics is always a pain because you don’t get any kills, and if you don’t get kills, how can you prove you were doing anything to help your team.

    Then, on top of all that, there is nothing like getting a rage filled mail from your alliance leader about somebody losing an expensive ship doing something besides a strat op because “it makes us look bad.”

    We love metrics though, and killboards, flawed as they are, are something people can grab on to.

  5. You should look at the Rote Kapelle killboards, especially the Curse loss mails. It is a miracle that someone hasn’t eaten a gun, yet.

  6. My nullsec alt have 99% ISK ratio, while I’m terrible outside large fleets. Most of my corpmate have more than 90% ISK ratio, while we’re an industrial corporation. So I can easily agree on your view about how ratios are silly ^^

  7. One thing I’ve noticed is that most of the really good pilots I know or know of in EVE – the sort of guys who can go into fights with the odds seemingly stacked against them and emerge victorious, or turn an even contest into an execution – have unimpressive kill/death ratios (often less than 2-1). Why? Because they’re ballsy, and they’re not afraid of even or disadvantaged fights. Contrast this with k/d ratio obsessed leet-pvpers, who have always struck me as some of the most risk-averse people in EVE.

  8. Personally I try to not succumb to the high score mentality of killboards, but I do use my public killboard entries as feedback method to keep myself honest about my lack of pvp progress.

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