Monday, November 15, 2010

Legio Pandemic Delenda Est

One can do anything with bayonets except sit on them - Thomas Hardy
If there wasn't a war going on, Pandemic Legion (PL) would have to invent one.

As the largest, and arguably the most effective mercenary entity in New Eden, Pandemic Legion makes its living by taking sides on the various wars going on in nullsec. They are costly to the point that only the major alliances or coalitions can afford to hire them for any length of time. Which means that nullsec warfare, with its new-found dependency on large fleets of titans and super-carriers, has taken another step toward becoming a rich man's game.

Pandemic Legion made the decision to give up any sovereign nullsec space it owned earlier this year and dedicate itself entirely to mercenary Sov conflict. It was a key player in the fall of Atlas and the roll-back of Against All Authorities (-A-). It is presently occupied in an enfilading attack against the Northern Coalition (NC) in an effort to relieve pressure on the Drone Russians (RUS) who have effectively lost The Kalevala Expanse in their current war with the NC.While they are ostensibly open to being hired by anyone, Pandemic Legion shows a marked preference for hiring out to certain preferred clients.

Having no nullsec space of their own, Pandemic Legion is like a malevolent lily of the field; neither toiling nor spinning, but happily living in the space of one or two frequent patrons. This makes them particularly hard to counter. Dominion Sov rules favor being on offense, and having no territory of their own, Pandemic has no need to defend unless it's in their contract; and you'll note Pandemic has yet to sign up for a defensive fight.

With no sovereign space of their own, Pandemic Legion has only one thing to fear, and that's an end to the current destabilization in nullsec. Without lucrative wars to fight it would quickly tear itself apart. The Pandemic Legion culture thrives on conflict and its pilots would quickly become discontent and prone to internal mischief if not provided a steady diet of external mayhem.

This makes Pandemic a threat even to those with pockets deep enough to hire it.

Eventually, one of three things must happen: 1) Pandemic Legion will be betrayed and destroyed by one of its preferred patrons. 2) Pandemic Legion will betray one or more of its preferred patrons in order to "reset" an overly stable nullsec map. 3) Pandemic Legion will reach a point where it can no longer maintain cohesion and split into a number of separate entities.

Before that happens, I expect PL will do a great deal of damage to the nullsec game, acting as a prop to rich alliances and coalitions that normally would contract or fall due to internal weakness or external threats. Even those who currently benefit from hiring Pandemic Legion are, in the long run, threatened by it. New Eden cannot wait for matters to run their natural course.

Pandemic Legion must be destroyed.


  1. Very interesting post. I have to agree.

  2. You probably provided several months of PL fuel with this post. They love this sort of thing!

  3. As long as they buy my merchandise, I've no problem with that ;)

  4. While I have no insight to support it, I'm curious as to why you do not suppose a fourth option, whether you've ruled it out: that PLS's "yin" will give rise to a "yang" and where PL is the quintessential Dominion Sov offense, a quintessential Dominion Sov defense will coalesce? After all, if this very dichotomous phenomenon happens with tactics, as you pointed out with the supercaps/armorHACs v. drakes saga, could it not also play out for the overall strategy of a group like PL?

    Hope that question comes off clearly enough. Loving your blog and working my way through back stuff.

  5. Xel - I don't say that PL is a quintessential offensive sov force. Dominion favors offense, and PL has structured themselves to avoid the need to play defense. That structure is unsustainable and, ironically, the more successful PL is, the sooner it will collapse.

  6. I don't think PL's patrons think long term enough for them to realize that PL's future threat is greater than it's current value.

    I agree that they would intervene to "reset" a stable political map, but probably without the betrayal part. In between contracts, perhaps?

    PL, I believe, is internally stable. A culture of trolling yields a culture of internal tolerance. There are quite a few former Goonies in there, after all.

    In short, I see PL as a stable entity here to stay. Until the moment they pick up sov.

    Side note: I predicted ( that this quarter's Economic Report would not publish EVE population details, because of a sharp fall in population. I was wrong - they did publish it. I was right - there was a 20k drop in pods in EVE. I was wrong in that this would be the first drop in EVE history, as there have been similar ~10k drops in the past. I predict that the downward trend will continue due to a combination of high PLEX prices and current player frustration with CCP.