One of the strangest strategies I’ve seen crop up in Faction War, is allowing an enemy to take a system in order to benefit from the lucrativeness of eventually taking it back. This rather backwards approach to taking sovereignty stems from the fact that the primary worth of a FW system is in taking it –not in owning it.
For example, take System A. System A is currently owned by the Amarr. To plex it from 0 to 100% contestation, the Minmatar will do an average of 150 base plexes. However, the Amarr will defend it, if only to get pvp, so the Minmatar will need to do more like 300 plexes over time to get it to 100%.
At the current Minmatar LP to ISK ratio (based on current Stabber Fleet prices), factoring in some modest pvp, and applying current warzone control payout bonuses, the Minmatar will net a low estimate of 16.3 billion isk for taking the system. This could easily reach upwards of 20 billion isk, depending on what lengths the Amarr go to to defend it.
Once the system is owned, we can upgrade it for a variety of bonuses—extra station slots that are rarely used, a few ISK taken off various sell order taxes, as well as the opportunity to save a few million on your medical clone, should you happen to lose your pod. We should probably mention that these are not privileged bonuses even, but those shared with any neutral in system.
Once you own a FW system, it essentially becomes worthless in and of itself. Ownership primarily becomes a question of numbers for warzone control purposes. So long as the Minmatar maintain a certain number of systems, it is of more monetary benefit for them to allow the Amarr to take a few systems (since defending them is of no profit) and simply taking them or other systems back for the purpose of farming the LP.
It is also important to note that when the Amarr take a system, using the same scenario in the example above but using their own LP to ISK ratio and lack of warzone control payout bonuses, they will net 4-5 billion ISK in taking a system. Therefore, for every system the Minmatar takes back that the Amarr took from them Post-Inferno, we net more than 3 times as much profit.
Just an interesting thought for a Monday afternoon.