Friday, June 11, 2010

Of Two Alliances and Billy Joel

You’ll recall the closing lines from my post The Amoral World of Diplomacy:
By breaking AAA sovereignty rules on Paxton’s behalf, CVA [Curatores Veritatis Alliance] has broken any tacit agreements between AAA [Against All Authoriries] and Paxton [Paxton Federation]. CVA has made sure Paxton will not profit from CVA’s losses, and that Paxton pilots are fully committed to the CVA cause.

CVA appears to have found an ally who will gladly die for them, and are in the process of making sure Paxton does just that.

More prophetic words than even I realized at the time.

Evicted from Providence, Paxton Federation’s member corporations were unable to agree on a direction forward. After an extended debate on the question, and faced with member discontent at the lack of movement, Paxton Alliance went into failscade at the end of May. As of two days ago only Paxton Industries, last as it was first, remained in the alliance alongside the three-member executor corp.

This caught most Providence watchers by surprise. Paxton had the reputation of a well-run alliance that managed the difficult feat of doing both industry and pvp exceptionally well. Despite their eviction from Providence, they’d had much advance notice of events. They’d fought well against overwhelming odds and, when the time came, retreated in good order with their heads held high and their morale intact.

Alas for the best laid plans of mice and men.

A lot of Paxton pilots appear to blame CVA for bringing the Providence house down, and burying Paxton in the rubble. The degree to which that’s true can be seen in absence of Paxton orphans making the jump to CVA in any numbers.

Where Paxton’s fall was like a lightning bolt, CVA seems content to flicker out slowly, like a guttering candle. CVA’s slow but relentless decline continued with the departure of Davy Jones Locker and its 72 pilots. That leaves CVA with a pilot count hovering just above 900, down from between 1,400 and 1,500 at the beginning of the Great Eviction.

900 (914 as of today, to be precise) still seems like an awful lot of pilots. However, the kill-board numbers, along with the size and composition of the fleets CVA is able to field, suggest the active pilot count is much smaller and of poorer quality than their total player count would suggest. 

Some of that attrition may be due to financial constraints. A communication from a purported CVA member stated:

“…if we feel we can do enough damage to warrant the cost of SBUs, you can bet we're going to drop them.”
As per my reply to him, a 900+ member alliance that frets over the cost of SBUs is an alliance in deep trouble financially. That CVA does so while paying upwards of 1.8 billion isk per month for sov costs on nine systems that return little strategic or financial value brings the quality of their leadership into question.

While CVA continues to hold sovereignty of station system X-R3NM, this appears to be a function of defensive indifference on the part of the New Providence Holders, who seem to perceive CVA pilots as a convenient source of pvp targets rather than a threat.

In other words, CVA’s relevance in Providence has slipped to the level of a null-sec resource to be harvested. Scary stuff that, if you’re a CVA pilot.

So we arrive at the end of an amazing story arc. The much admired Paxton Federation goes out with a bang. Meanwhile, scorned CVA persists; whimpering its way toward irrelevance.

It seems Billy Joel was right: Only the good die young.


  1. I hope CVA rots in low sec, doing stupid RP (as opposed to RP done right) the whole time.

    /me is not bitter.

  2. Have to admire how well paxton fought being out gunned but did not back down. I was there for there last few fights and they deserve a salute for a good fight.

  3. Good job on the interesting and cerebral blog on provi. Came here after reading that tantrum by a couple of CVA'ers in kugu heh.

    Try to get this onto KK's blogpack. I use the iphone app Capsuleer to read blogs and I doubt I'm the only one!

  4. Thanks Hao.

    My blog isn't Providence specific but, in terms of EVE meta-game mechanics, there's been a lot of very interesting activity there.

    I recommend the latest Quarterly Economic Newsletter. The section on population demographics is of particular note.

    There's been a significant shift of players into 0.0 since the new sov mechanics took place last December with the Dominion upgrade. Providence population has grown under the new regime, even with the NRDS to NBSI switch.

    I've put in a request to be added to KK's Blogpack a few weeks back, but he's a bit busy in RL these days (as well as slogging through the 80 entries to his latest eve-banter). He's posted saying he'll catch up with managing his blog listings as soon as he's able.

  5. Two comments from me :)

    1) Davy Jones leaving was a complete surprise to both CVA and Davy Jones members. You will note that since it left it has shed about thirty members (little over 1/3 of its memberbase) most of whom have joined other CVA corporations. The reason for Davy Jones leaving was its executor, Tallen Atear, wishing to regain his old alliance, Enforcers of Serenity which through a very messy and internal dispute and split up with the alliance name itself eventually becoming a squatter in providence (before falling apart again). Granted that information is not well known so there is no way you could have known what was happening.

    My other comment is directed to Hao. The only active CVA member posing on Kugu that I am aware of is ME! Hardin has not been active for months. Darkmatter is NOT and NEVER WILL BE a member of CVA. Most members of CVA would like nothing better than to see his mouth shut.

  6. Thanks for the feedback Rovern. Much appreciated.

    CVA numbers do not show it having picked up a third of Davy Jones members as you state. Davy Jones' departure left CVA with 916 members. As of the posting above, that number had dropped to 914 members.

    CVA presently has 930 members. After Davy Jones (a PVP corp) left, CVA recruited 18 member Aquilia Cohors Praetoria (a industrial corp). This transaction alone should have left CVA with 932 members.

    This suggests that, if you did indeed recruit former Davy Jones members, you lost other players elsewhere leaving you with a net loss of two players after bringing in ACP.

    In other words, CVA is losing players faster than they can replace them. The reasons they give when they walk out the door is irrelevant.

    Further, replacing a 72 member pvp corp with an 18 member indy corp is not a good sign given the recent state of CVA's fleets.