Ok. let me put things this way.
Two same ships with two same setups. One with all Mk2 modules flied by Papitas other with all Mk4 also flied by Papitas. And if u compare r10 l1 ship mk2 again flied by Papitas with r12 l10 mk4 also flied by Papitas u will come to conclusion that in both cases first Papitas doesn’t have any chance in direct confrontation with second Papitas (simple mathematics). And after several months when first Papitas finaly realize that, he will start to calculate how much time he need to spend, just to have same equipment as second Papitas. And if he has real life, family, children, work and if he plays daily 2,3 hrs he will calculate 1 yr or more. He will smile at himself and leave this game. Who could blame him anyway.
And that is what is happening here, not just lack of advertisement. There are new players. At the beginning they all like the game. They play 5,6,7 hrs per day. We can see their enthusiasm. However after 2 or 3 months nobody stays. And we have corporations that have 150 members but they cant assemble one full wing for dreads (not for winning, just to play). Because majority of new players leave when they reach T3 and start to realize how things are standing.
Imagine player of Counter Strike that has to play game one yr just to have opportunity to buy same weapon and body armor that other players already have. In that case there would be only 700-1000 counter strike players online or even less. Truth hurts. And if somebody keeps telling u the truth it doesnt mean that he doesnt love u.
And I understand that company needs profit. But there are other ways to increase that. Not just - push people to be pissed off to decide to buy, its counterproductive. More customization options, bigger friends list, corporate ingame message board, corporate logo on dread and other fun and side stuff. Even donations.
Your first point was kinda obious: everyone knows that a same skilled player will beat somenoe with worse equipment. Thing is that we can find multiple levels of skill among players with same equipment, even at T5…theres diversity and not because you see someone with all max out it means he is good. Also ping factor affects gameplay. Any way, there are several variables that make the game “universe” rich in terms of diversity.
Now the grinding, leveling, maxing out stuff, etc. Its some big pain in the xxxx if you dont put a single dolar into this game (like i do)…but if you put money into this (boosters, license, prem ships, DLCs) you will greatly increase your “farming” capabilities, easily reducing that year into half or less. On the other hand, one year is little compared to most games that require you to farm stuff, so SC is not the only “devil” here at all.
BTW, ive heard people bitching about getting to T2 is sooo grindy and slow…really? T2? i made twice a fresh account and got a T3 ship (yes, tier rushing) in 8 hours gameplay (you can do it in one day) without spending any money nor getting any kind of help.
Problem isnt gear, grinding, or what ever, problem is match maker balancing; you dont have time to farm your stuff? you dont have money to get stuff a lot faster? then dont expect to be at a competitive player: if you dont spend enough time in this game you wont have either the ships and equipment nor the skills to fly well your ships, so you will be a casual player in all its letters…and thats not bad! you SHOULD still be able to win and have fun being a casual player IF match maker would do its job correctly balancing PVP games between competitive and casual players.
What you last sayed could help SC.