A Modest Proposal: A Solution to High Sec Ganking

I present a modest proposal related to the current debate over non-consensual pvp in Eve Online.

There exists a blight that is crippling New Eden. Even under the watchful eyes of Concord, there is a darkness creeping into the Empire space that threatens to break the foundation of the cluster. I speak, of course, of the non-consensual player versus player activities, popularly known as ganking. Let us look at the plight of the wide eyed carebear, the victim of such slaughter.

Here we see Sara, a hard working miner. She’s putting laser to asteroid and supplying the masses of New Eden with its lifeblood, namely ores and minerals. The work is long and often tedious but Sara soldiers through all obstacles, knowing that she is providing the means of freedom for every capsuleer. Unfortunately, there lurks a predator in Sara’s midst. His hunger is insatiable. His aptitude for violence and destruction has led him to this backwater star system in search of tears. Not just any tears, though. This predator is after a special variety, the sort that only can be stolen from the fresh corpse of a previously unmolested miner.

And so our faceless fiend strikes. Sara is blindsided by the assault. The villain restrains Sara by means of his warp scrambler, making escape all but impossible for our persecuted carebear. The slaughter then begins. The attacker cycles up his Hurricane’s weapons, thrusting shards of fiery death deep in through Sara’s armor. Alas, Sara’s Retriever is minimally tanked and leaving her naked hull exposed. Our scoundrel now fires off a snide remark in local before plunging through Sara’s last bit of hit points and reduces her to a battered wreck on the New Eden landscape.

Sadly, Sara’s ordeal is not an uncommon story. There are many miners and mission runners that suffer the same non-consensual combat--nay, butchery--at the hands of these tear pillagers. And thus comes into play my modest proposal. Carebears have neither the ISK nor the combat skills to bring the fight to these criminals. Thus, my proposal is of a different sort. The one possession bears have in abundance is other carebears. Whether because of financial incentive or a baser instinct of survival, carebears often band together. Using their numbers to their advantage, I propose that the few be sacrificed to save the many. That is to say, a few carebears would be indentured to a ganker in order to sate his lust for tears, leaving the other bears out of harm’s way. It would be hoped that with a fresh supply of the sweetest tears, the likes of which can only be produced by the most innocent and naïve of carebears, ganker’s appetites would be satisfied, thus allowing other carebears to go about their business as the backbone of the New Eden economy.

Let it not be said that there other solutions, for such a great dilemma requires an equally great solution. The talk of creating more lasting consequences for ganking or establishing legitimate markets for bears to find mercenaries to defend them is nonsense. They simply do not address the source of the problem. Thus I put forward a modest proposal, so that the many may go about New Eden unfettered at the price of the few.


I'm Lioso or Justin IRL. I'm an avid player of Eve Online and other MMOs. I've been a gamer most of my life and have a particular fondness for MMO's. The culture of Eve and of gamers in general fascinates me and much of what I write about reflects that.

Published Feb. 2nd 2013
  • hendrik.valentim
    Carebear here. We lived out of a wormhole for a year. For the kicks. Without danger, my life in New Eden would have been a lot more boring.
  • Shalee Lianne
    Why did you have to make the carebear in your story a girl. Hmph.
  • Lioso Cadelanne
    It was meant as a satirical piece. I drew my inspiration from this essay: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A_Modest_Proposal

    The serious proposed solutions are presented in the last paragraph, albeit in a roundabout fashion.

    With all the buzz going around about high sec pvp and what it should be, I thought it'd be entertaining to do something a bit out of left field.
  • Mat Westhorpe
    Featured Columnist
    I enjoyed your colourful description of a miner gank, but I'm not sure what you're suggesting here:

    "Using their numbers to their advantage, I propose that the few be sacrificed to save the many. That is to say, a few carebears would be indentured to a ganker in order to sate his lust for tears, leaving the other bears out of harm’s way."

    Are you proposing to put together a suicide squad in the style of Life of Brian, who will seek out potential gankers and willingly self-destruct in front of them? Or are you suggesting that these "indentured carebears" would work as slave labour for the gankers or to provide dummy targets?

    Unless I'm completely missing your point, that's what it sounds like. In any case, I don't think you're taking into account the gameplay rewards that the gankers seek. As hilarious as a Monty Python suicide attack might be, the gankers won't be entertained for long and they certainly won't care for fake targets.

    It's a great initiative to try to encourage miners to find ways to protect each other, that's what the EVE Universe is all about - players finding a way. Beyond player-organised initiatives, don't think it's in the spirit of EVE Online to make things too safe, even in high-sec. That ever-present creeping danger and sense of risk is what makes New Eden feel alive.

    [Edit: Lioso has now taken me to one side and explained that this is a satirical piece in the style of Jonathan Swift's A Modest Proposal' which suggests the poor sell their children as food. An 18th century troll EVE-ified, well played Lioso, well played.]

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