EVE CSS: Our procedures and policy

Hi there. You’re probably more familiar with me as the annoying guy that keeps saying no to people than a blogger and for good reason: I don’t blog.

Here’s a brief rundown on how we do our work, and the attempt to maintain a structure to our support policy in the ever changing world of EVE.

Petitions.

Let’s start with petitions. You file one ingame, pick your category and send it off. From there it goes to the volunteers queue, where the Polaris people scan it, decide if they can help or need to send it on. We have more advanced tools*, therefore we take the majority of the petitions, but many more are helped by the heroic people in the help channel, both the expert Polaris volunteers and the average EVE player, that hangs out there and helps out. The community can be proud of that, many of you are not only incredibly devoted to playing the game but you also help make it better for new players.

*The reason we do not allow free access to more extensive tools to more people is simply to restrict access of critical features to a select number of people. We learned this in beta, when I created a station in someones hangar. Hey, I was new, ok?

My stuff!

Now, we have a basic policy regarding lost items, which there seems to be some confusion about. It’s very simple really, and it goes like this:

If you lose something and petition about it, we are always prepared to believe your story. We will check every shred of evidence that we can unearth and try to deduce what happened. In some cases it’s as simple as looking it up. In others it can be impossible to find reasonable proof, after we have checked through every log page of multiple characters owned by several different players and then capping it off by crossreferencing their IP numbers, before going home to cry.

In other words, each case is evaluated and researched to the best of our abilities. And we want to help the players. It’s much easier and much more fun than arguing about the definition of griefing.

THEN Y DONT U HAVE BETTER LOGS!!1!:

We are constantly working with CCP to better our logs and our tools. We have seen an immense change for the better in our abilities to log a multitude of character and user details. Our understanding about the problem of logging every camera move that a player makes, each module activation, chat log, and the like can be problematic, simply because of the load such logs would be on the server. We like the server to run as smoothly as possible, as lag is our worst enemy. It’s difficult to verify and can be influenced by many factors, not all of which have anything to do with the server.

It��s not that the tools were no good before now. But as nice as the ESP, as it’s called, used to be it’s getting increasingly more sleek and powerful, as new features are added and code revised.We have access to a wealth of information about players and their nefarious doings, as it were. But if we don’t have the right tool, what do we do to trace a grain of omber across the galaxy before it was trashed inside a cargo container?

We periodically send feature requests to CCP and they then try to get them done as quickly as possible. Of course, the process of programming this ever advancing tool goes hand in hand with the developement of EVE so our more ambitious (or simply impossible) ideas happen gradually. Because it’s being written as we speak. EVE is a work in progress, and we are rather happy about the state of it. Personally I can’t wait to see how this game will unfold.

The Others:

The “Other” petition category has the lowest priority of category of all petitions. “Stuck” is the top priority, the others after that. The “Other” category invites you to send us a different type of petition, through the “Ask a Question” interface. Send it in (remember to answer the auto-reply) and it goes into our email queue, to be answered as quickly as possible. When we have a bad few days, as happened the other week, the email queue can and did grow to a gargantuan 700+ incidents, bringing answer times to new and unprecedented heights. We have now tamed the beast and hope to snuff it out entirely shortly, bringing the reply times back to normal. The same applies to all incidents as to the petitions: They are researched and answered to the best of our abilities.

Please note that bug reports are not monitored and answered by the EVE CSS team. The go straight to the bughunters and are evaluated by them. The bug reports can be very helpful to the dev team, especially when supported by a Log Server document.

I know there’s a hundred questions that I haven’t answered with this brief explanation, but I hope it gives some of you a better idea and understanding of why we do what we do the way we do it.

All the best,