A few days ago, Shalee Lianne from the Amarr Militia wrote a post on her blog about Why Faction War is Going to Suck.
Her opinions about the 'evils' of restricting docking access are not particularly new. They are shared by a lot of people in militia -- people who threaten to leave Faction War and EVE altogether if the changes are actually put through.
What I did find interesting were her references to the current imbalance in Faction War, and a call to resetting the warzone with the implementation of Inferno.
First, she talks about the 'fragmentation' of FW, and implies that she can't rely upon other time zones in her militia. I heartily agree that flipping systems should not be as easy, or take as short a time as it currently does. However, I think it is naive of the Amarr to think that lengthening the timers will mean that they do not have to deal with the issue of a fragmented militia that is incapable of coordinating between timezones. (and even coordinating among their own time zone)
She also mentions a time when Late Night plexed TZVI. While she was mainly discussing how the Amarr couldn't counter, having only seven in their fleet, I think it's more important to note that TZVI is a system much more important to the Minmatar's European base of operations and less important to the USTZ base of operations.
Since this is the case, why was LNA, primarily a USTZ alliance plexing there to begin with? Gasp!! Could Euro/USTZ coordination be somehow involved? It's a conspiracy!
The bottom line is that any militia who can tackle the timezone/fragmentation issues, even to a small degree, is going to have a leg-up come inferno, no matter how long it takes to flip a system. If the Amarr want to be competitive, (and want to maintain a presence in the warzone) they should probably start sorting out and addressing some of these issues, rather then hoping that CCP will bend the mechanics in such a way that prevent them from having to deal with it.
Secondly, she discusses the imbalance in numbers between the Amarr and the Minmatar. In my two years or so in militia, there has always been cycles in militias where one side or the other tends to be heavier. Eventually, things even out, or go the other way.
Shalee mentions a situation where she had 7 in fleet, where the Minmatar had 40. What she doesn't mention is the possible 30+ Amarr several systems away who were not 'with' her. In otherwords, some of the Amarr's numbers issues comes from their inability to work together, not from the sheer lack of numbers.
Over the last few months, the Minmatar have gotten much better at setting aside differences for the purpose of combining fleets to 'get the job done.' This did not happen naturally, nor was it an easy process. There were a few key individuals who really pushed for us to start mixing fleets, and keeping 'the peace' between various alliances.
Drama may have occurred and friendlies may have been shot during this process, but in the end most people saw the benefit of being able to work together when necessary, and I think this is going to benefit the Minmatar more then they know once Inferno comes into play.
The Amarr, on the other hand, seem to feel that this inability to work together merits a call to CCP to reset the warzone so that they have a chance. While I realize that the warzone will probably be reset anyway, just due to the 'behind-the-scenes' nature of the changes CCP is making, I find it hilarious that the Amarr think that this reset will help them.
In the end, unless they sort out their problems and organize themselves, they are still going to be in the same boat they are in now. They are still going to be fragmented, without much hope of countering the Minmatar.
And in the end it won't be the Minmatar's fault for having too much coorperation or too many numbers. It won't be CCP's fault for not making ideal mechanics.
It will be their own fault, for sitting on their thumbs or running away from the warzone, when they could be recruiting, organizing, coorperating among themselves and strategizing with other timezones.
So yeah, Faction War is going to suck for the Amarr. But not because of any mechanic, or due to any decision that CCP makes.
Faction War is going to suck for them because they suck.