This entry has been written from an ‘out of character’ perspective to discuss recent events in EVE.
There is something about EVE that has always kind of annoyed me. Yeah, I know. What are the odds? 😉
That thing, or this particular thing, is market hubs. Given all of the systems and regions in EVE, players as a group insist on doing as much of their trading as possible in one of a handful of systems. Manufacturers build in empire to sell in empire. Many null sec players import their ships and mods from empire rather than finding them locally. Even when there is a local market hub, it is typically stocked by imports from empire sold at Jita price +5-10%. Generally speaking, players shy away from local production and trade.
This state of affairs has never seemed right to me (I understand the reasons why it is this way, but dislike the reality..) and so it was with some glee that I heard news of the impending ‘Burn Jita’. I really dislike the place and its long shadow cast over EVE’s economy.
What I do find interesting with the current situation is that Goonswarm’s strategy of economic disruption is made possible by the general communities reliance on our in some ways predictable and centralised economy. If you want to buy or sell something, you’re probably going to do it in one of these four systems;
Top stations by # of mkt trans on 22nd April! Empire first, then nullsec: Jita 4-4 (303k), Amarr 8 (95k), Dodixie 9-20 (65k), Rens 6-8 (60k)
Compare that to:
Top nullsec stations for market trans on Apr 22nd: 6VDT (5,741), VFK (4,055), C3N (1,759), L-C3 (1,711), E-BY (1,691).
The largest null sec market hub is less than a tenth of the fourth place empire hub. We Capsuleers sure do like our high sec markets. Burn Jita was an unprecedented event, but given its apparent success (defined by whatever Goonswarm themselves aimed at achieving) and follow up analysis, it is highly likely that we will see similar events in future. As The Mittani was happy to state himself;
A tremendous amount of uncertainty now hangs over the head of every hisec trade hub and each producer within it, as if Jita can be sacked, perhaps Amarr, Rens, or Dodixie could be next – and that uncertainty drives prices up still more. I can state affirmatively that there will be more ‘burns’ of trade hubs by nullsec alliances, but future attacks will not come with two months of warning – if there is any notice at all.
The big question in my mind is this – how worried are high sec manufacturers/traders/customers by all this? Could we actually see players begin to spread themselves out to become less reliant on Jita 4-4? If ‘Burn market hub of the week without warning’ becomes a reality, will that be enough to shake confidence in high sec hubs?
I actually hope so. It would make things much more interesting and finally open up the possibility of regional markets. Maybe, just maybe, it might be possible to buy something in the Derelik region. Just throwing that out there. Hey, it might happen! 😉
The next year could prove interesting for decentralising EVE’s economy. If players stop seeing the four established hubs as the ‘only place’ to buy or sell stuff, they might spread out. If the upcoming Hulkageddon is as effective as the Goons hope, mining in empire will be getting kinda risky for awhile at least, and Hulks are going to get very expensive. Null sec could become the place to be for all mining, not just the high end minerals. And with Planetary Ring Mining on the cards, moon goo won;t just be coming out of moons in future; threatening the technetium monopoly of the northern regions.
I’m interested to see what EVE’s economic landscape will look like on six months time. If its much like today, I’ll actually be pretty disappointed.