EVE Online

Tech Discussion: Are we blaming EVE Servers for Human Errors/Lack of Efforts?

Let me start with a more practical sense that everything has a limit and we create a solution around the limit. A good solution designer or planner or in this case a strategist or "theory crafter" should know the requirement while understanding the limits and then proceed to plan and execute what has to be done. Now that we understand the reality and what is expected, let's go on to the actual discussion.

Trillion ISK question:

Are we blaming the servers for human errors or shortcomings?

Scenario 1:

Let's take an Online First-person shooter game where a player is using a high end 400 DPI mouse while another player decides to use a 1600 DPI mouse ends up losing the game. Is this a game server fault or is this a player fault?

I know you might start saying this has nothing to do with what EVE as a game have a problem where it cannot accommodate 11k players. Wait till I finish you impatient fellow capsuleer.

The above-mentioned scenario is an End User or Player Hardware Limitation which is a limitation that should be considered before he/she decides to compete.

Scenario 2:

Let's take an Online game of the past where you are not allowed to join a server and are made to wait in a queue. One player joins the queue 30 mins prior to the server becoming online and gets into the queue while another player joins the queue 2 mins prior to the server online. The player who joined the queue late never got into the server. Is this a game server fault or is this a player fault?

This scenario depicts the lack of End User or player effort in trying to join the queue earlier to get a chance in playing the game while he/she is completely aware that there is a queue.

Scenario 3:

Let's take EVE Online in this case, the player one says his group to jump through the gate in batches reducing the load on the server and another player tells his group to jump all at once through the gate causing significant TiDi. Is this a game server fault or is this a player fault?

This scenario depicts the lack of End User or player understanding of the server load or limitation which could have been avoided if he/she followed the same steps player one followed. Player one doing it means there are experiences due to past incidents that have made him/her make such decision.

Coming to the discussion, there is always some form of Limitation that might be with the server but not limited only to them. Some of the limitations I see are following

  • Server Limitation – Hardware
  • Client Limitation – Hardware
  • Client Limitation – Device Limitations
  • Player Limitation – Understanding of the Game Mechanics or Limitations
  • Player Limitation – Lack of efforts
  • Network Limitation – Instability or Bandwidth
  • Time limitations – TZ or Time Availability

These are some I can point out but there might be more but we have been seeing everyone only blaming the server limitations and I am not sure why!

When we enter an Abyssal Site we know that we should not enter it close to downtime so we don't take the risk. This is an example of how a known limitation of Server lets us decide what we are doing. The next thing we consider is that jumping through the gate outside of the Abyssal Site should be done with few seconds in spare so the server tick doesn't get us blown up. This is an example of how an unknown or uncertainty of how the server will react impacts our decision but either way we make the decisions based on previous experience or experience that we absorb from other players who have experienced it.

Are we as players blaming too much on the servers instead of actually understanding the capabilities of the game and its limitations? Is player lack of efforts playing a major role that is being projected as a Server issue?

I have started thinking about this since the attack on T5Z happened, Imperium formed around 400+ players and attacked the structures while there were 1100+ players in the system, at one point the system became TiDi free while Imperium was still in the system shooting structures and PAPI was in tether on the keepstar with their fighters out on the jammer. This is not generally something we see where the players are filling the system but there is no TiDi if the actions per second are significantly less.

I would like to know whether there was a player level effort involved to assault a system by planning around the TiDi mechanism and making adjustments to handle them and others are not taking this effort and complaining about servers? Did CCP improve server performance in the last 2 months? Did the players did not log in with huge numbers to defend the system which resulted in no or less TiDi?

If the server problem is actually a concern why null blocs are not working together to form a massive force to test the maximum limit for a node? Should we not work with CCP instead of keep complaining I cannot do this and that because of the server? The core problem I am putting forward here is that there are too many players in a node causing issues but then the same entity which complaints about it is the one that brings extensive numbers which sounds absurd. Is CCP and their servers being used as an excuse for the general failure of players?

Coming to the next myth in such discussion is the recommendation of using Multi-threaded programming, even though threads improve the performance I don't see it solving this problem. The game by itself relies on certain synchronous actions and multiple threads will have a performance improvement but will not essentially remove TiDi or make it such that 20k players can be on the same grid or node.

How can the servers scale based on such expectations? If it can accommodate 10k players won't there be 15k players logging in to cause similar issues? I feel the player understanding of scaling/Auto Scaling is a bit wrong. Any system in modern days can scale gradually and not drastically, even a pre-warmed setup can only take so much and auto-scaling policies work on resource utilization over a period and there is a cooldown period as well. You cannot just ask 1000s of players to do something all at once creating 1000+ actions per second on a node while there are n+ actions already being performed in that node then go about complaining servers are the problem because you are too immature to accept that you have done mistakes.

I personally feel that the players are complaining too much about servers instead of understanding the technical limitations that are associated with the server limitations and creating a play method around it. There are always limitations. It is either this or the server issue that is just being blown up to such a level to hide the lack of capabilities to factor in the game mechanics. Not even a year passed since EVE Online has seen massive battles that created records in gaming history, this is an improvement and cannot be a decline in server performance. Why server performance suddenly became an issue?

"Did the pants shrink or did the person get too fat or is the person too lazy to wear pants but complaints that the pants shrunk?"

I was bored so I thought I will make a big wall of TEXT to contribute to wasting other's time. Updoot if you have wasted precious time in your life by reading this.


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