Thursday, August 8

Why Lowsec?

The 'why' and 'how' of lowsec is once again a topic of debate it seems. Miura Bull philosophises about the nature of piracy. Rixx Javix writes another one of his saving lowsec posts (I personally think lowsec is mostly fine). Mord Fiddle promises us a post to look forward to and CSM member mynnna decides to amuse himself by poking us lowsec critters a little with a stick.

Why lowsec? Where to begin? I guess I should first point out there's really two kinds of lowsec, normal lowsec and faction warfare lowsec. Technically there's also DUST lowsec but since DUST seems doomed to die quietly and anonymously, I'll consider my home region of Molden Heath normal lowsec for the sake of argument.
Faction warfare lowsec, is relatively newbie friendly and has some of the best individual ISK making opportunities in EVE and these are accessible to both nublets and veterans.
Normal lowsec however is a bit like central Africa, there's plenty of valuable natural resources but unless you're a local warlord or a foreign super (nullsec) power you likely ain't getting any pieces of the pie. It's my one major grievance with this part of lowsec; there's no reliable sustainable income for new players, but I've already blogged about this in the past.

Since I can't talk for other people, this is going to have to be a post about why I live in lowsec and why I made that choice and am quite content with it.

Let me start off by saying I don't normally think about New Eden in terms of security levels, New Eden is New Eden to me and I'm equally comfortable flying in hisec, lowsec, nullsec and wormhole space and I suspect the same is true for all the people mentioned in my opening paragraph. Once you reach a certain level of understanding about EVE's gameplay mechanics and certain level of skillpoints, all the myths about the dangers of lowsec, wormholes and nullsec and the safety of hisec turnout to be just that, myths. A prepared and experienced capsuleer can flourish or cause wide-scale destruction in any environment in EVE both solo or as a member of a group. If you happen to have multiple accounts it becomes easier still.

Once you get to that level, what you decide to call 'home' in EVE -if anywhere- becomes mostly a matter of preference for one set of mechanics over another. I eventually settled on lowsec because I like freedom more then anything else in EVE, and in my experience lowsec allows me the largest amount of freedom. Sure there's gate guns, but I can freely shoot whatever I desire and good luck locking me into a station or denying me access to my assets, you're not very likely to succeed at either. And if I feel like plundering the PvE resources of sovereign 0.0 a couple of dual boxed strategic cruisers and a little research on timezone activity go a really long way (I have to date never lost a ship while doing this). I personally never feel like solo raiding wormhole space, but my wormhole wandering buddy Bjurn Akely does so every day he logs into EVE so that too is totally viable. Hisec never held much attraction to me, but I lived and operated in it at a full -10.0 for a month during Hulkageddon V so that is equally possible, though admittedly it requires the help of either neutral alts and/or red frog.

Lowsec to me represents the ultimate freedom to do what I want, whenever I want, how I want, in whatever ship takes my fancy. There's nobody telling me what I can and can't do. Incidentally it is also why I'm not in faction warfare, I have no desire for what effectively amounts to 2000 or so blues that are not of my own choosing. I am however, also keenly aware that lowsec is only like that for me because I have multiple accounts, two of which are half a decade old and am sufficiently space affluent to afford this lifestyle of freedom. I don't associate lowsec with a particular lifestyle, I pirate, I PvP, I PvE, hell I even mine moons and build stuff there, I live there because its mechanics suit my idea of what EVE should be best, nothing more nothing less.


  1. Very well said. Couldn't agree more.

  2. Provide some examples of local warlords? Hard to tell them from the rest of the pirates at times. I assume the lads from nullsec reach primarily for the resource pie's moon goo filling? Or do they tend to covet other lowsec resources as well?

    1. In my home region it would be Rise of Legion, Broken Chains Alliance+Friends (anti-pies), Calamitous-Intent+Friends (us) and some people that live in the neighbouring Great Wildlands. In greater lowsec, Shadow Cartel, Electus Matari (anti-pies), Suddenly Spaceships, SCUM. various larger FW entities (like Late Night Alliance, Iron Oxide., Quantum Cats) come to mind but there are many more also there's a number of groups in the Khanid/Aridia/Genesis/Kor-Azor/Kador area but I'm pretty out of the loop on those these days.

      There's quite a decent number of groups sized 50-400 who have the capital power to hold R32 and sometimes R64 moons in lowsec, though the latter is almost always at the sufferance of a nullsec power. And if a sovblock decides they really want your R32 there's not much you can do to stop then unless you have a reliable batphone. R32's are prolly about 50/50 in lowsec between locals and sovblocks.
      Lower end moons are normally owned by locals sometimes even privately, I personally have towers on one R16 and couple of R8's.

      Other resources are normally left alone, but then miners are exceedingly rare in lowsec (they do exist though).

    2. There is also the odd hi-sec/lo-sec alliance like Redrum Fleet which is intent on controlling the lo-sec system(s) neighboring to its hi-sec area, in order to give its members safe access to sites, belts, moons for POSes, PI, and so on.

  3. Regarding the Dust lowsec thing. At the moment, Dust players have to choose between an automated strike that lands instantly with good damage and an orbital that has a delay with a lot more risk. Simply put, it's pointless to use an EVE pilot right now.

    When it's only EVE side strikes in low sec and no automated ones, you'll start seeing more Dusters actually care about supporting them again.

    From an EVE only perspective, I just wish low sec belts had something worth mining. The risk vs reward ratio there is way off.

  4. Agreed. Freedom is a great reason to live in low-security space no matter what your lifestyle is there. And while I can think of plenty of improvements I also consider a lot of proposed improvements to be a detriment to the freedom.

    1. Yeah, I always cringe a little when people propose some huge overhaul of lowsec. Maybe it's just my conservative nature, but I mostly like lowsec the way it is.