It is customary to recap the year past before the ball drops allowing a little bit of reflection what was good and what can be improved in the next year. I won’t disappoint my last remaining reader but before I start, a fair word of warning: 2017 was not my “EVE year”. In fact, it was the year I came closest to walking away from this game since 2009.
Lets start at the beginning. 2017 saw me starting up my own little industrial corp somewhere in highsec with the goal to afk-mine or run PI while my meatbag hangs limp in some conference call. My wormhole life consisted of solo roams due to my corp being heavily UK / EU focused and I encountered them only in our slack channel. On my main, I celebrated my 7-year birthday (yay me!) while I was getting slowly exasperated with my wormhole existence. I pretty much ignored the Nullsec-Fest (formerly known as “Fanfest”) and slowly stopped reading the EVE blogs or standard media. My fare, like 99% of EVE players became reddit with its short and bitter memes. CSM time rolled in and I think I managed to break my record, not a single one of my candidates made it. Yes, I went for non-bloc players that I would have trusted to represent independents but CCP wanted to build out their nullsec game and the CSM represents this perfectly. This came during a time where I went moderately active in my wormhole again and even killed things. I managed to lose my Proteus due to a series of really dumb decisions and I had fun with that as well. ’twas a good fight.
The summer kicked in and /r/eve caused a rather intense spat with CCP who dared to dial-back risk-free, unlimited ISK making. The brigades didn’t like that and the old “player v company” dynamics returned. To be honest, I agreed with the players, CCP made some terrifyingly stupid design decisions and was now paying the price for it. At the same time, I was getting tired of hanging out solo in our C4 hole where PvP is highly situational (with 2 characters and not being good at it) and PvE is nearly impossible. I ended up settling our long-lost C2 again with one of my corp mates – good times where had in organizing and hauling gear into the hole and creating a new base for my corp. The promise was that C2s can offer a more routes and contents and stimulate recruitment and corp activity. To some extent, this was certainly true and we recruited a couple of newer players. Overall however, my time in EVE was dropping week by week, this wasn’t helped by RL reasons that radically shifted my worklife. EVE was simply not on my mind anymore.
A CSM member with the nominal WH portfolio organized a townhall which went down the predicted path. That call took the last hope I had for our space from me. CCP and players want Sov-Nullsec Online “be” EVE Online and Faction War, High Sec, Lowsec and Nullsec are fighting a hopeless battle for attention. I am too old, too cynical and too bitter vet to write up precise mechanics how I think it could be improved; I know it wouldn’t be read or taken seriously by anyone. My time in spaceships reduced even further and with it came my realization that I actually don’t enjoy this game anymore. I logged, unsubbed 2 of my 3 accounts and walked away for a while.
Which brings us to 2018. I still think EVE has tremendous potential, I love hanging out with my corp mates on Slack and am not negative about the game itself and what it promises. In 2018, I will try to re-kindle my love and energy but this will likely mean a drastic shift of attitude. Maybe solo roaming nullsec or wormhole space in search for things I can take down. Maybe re-joining the Mercenaries (if they will have me!), I remember my time there very fondly. Maybe joining some SOV nullsec corp, as long as they don’t force me into a Rorqual or Titan, I’d have fun with some large fleet fights. Maybe joining one of a last remaining “fun” wormhole corps with more than one dude in the chain. Overall, 2018 will be a good year and I will make EVE online part of it in some way. And yes, I will write about it!
As my remaining two readers may have noticed, the frequency and energy of my posts have declined over the last few months. I tried to keep a “2 posts / month” schedule and while I have largely been able to do this, I am not happy with the content – its sloppy, thin, not funny, badly edited and overall I am not satisfied. In part this is due to time constraints, I had changes in my real (work) life that were in some ways awesome (I get to run my own startup) in other words scary as hell (I get to run my own startup). Gaming in general isn’t in my head at the moment.
Add to this my disappointment with EVE, my only game of choice. I am not going to lament that EVE is dying, considering that the entire market for PC-based games is declining by 4% / year (too lazy to look up the reference), EVE is holding up pretty well. New players join up as alphas and within days sit fat and happy in Rorquals in Delve – EVE as CCP wants it to be. No, EVE isn’t dying, “my” EVE is dying. The game I enjoyed with friends, where owning a Wormhole was a team sport and not the case of one guy (me) with an alt corp (mine) just dump some Citadels down without worrying too much about fuel or evictions. That EVE is gone and gone for good. CCP decided a few years ago that nullsec is the only driver for revenue and have basically stopped all development anywhere else.
Blaming CCP for me not wanting to log in is a cheap and unfair way of describing whats going on. CCP makes a product and arguably has a marketing department that carefully analyzes the retention of new, paying customers. Maybe I am simply not in the core customer base right now, this happened to me before, in 2009 World of Warcraft changed from a multiplayer game to a single player game where all human interactions were superfluous. I had enough of the gear-score-driven LFG system and one day logged off and walked off. I feel like I am close to this situation in EVE right now.
Instead of throwing the towel and biomassing, I am taking a semi-official break until December (ish). I am not having any expectations that EVE Vegas will bring any features that would excite me to log back in but I will certainly watch where I can. I truly, honestly, hope that something will be announced where I can get my mojo back.
Until then, enjoy, blow stuff up and have fun without me!
Well, its been one of those weeks where you wake up on Sunday and can’t remember a thing that happened since the last time you sat down and wrote and not for good (alcohol, drugs) reasons but because the week was filled with a thousand little things, each absorbing, none really noteworthy.
I did have a brush with fame though, a very light touch to be fair. I was contacted by famed
The Mittani.com Space Pravda Imperium News author Vulxanis Viceroy. Vulxanis wanted to schedule an interview with me due to my last blog post in which I had made some critical comments about the state of wormholes and the usefulness of Alphas. So, Vulx and I agreed to a few times and I was sweatily anticipating my 15minutes of fame. I double checked my post in expectations of the hundreds of thousands of hits that this would surely evoke. Did I insult Noobman? Will HK evict me? Continue reading
Lets face it, all SciFi boils down to the eternal question of “what if”. What if we could ascend to the stars, what if we had unlimited energy, what if our ability to shape our environment was only limited by our imagination? What if we were immortal?
We all recognize these themes from countless SciFi novels and movies, they make us dream of the possibilities that would open up if when the starting conditions change. The starting conditions being our current existence, of course. That’s what makes gives it the “Fi”. However, as a formally trained scientist, I always ask the “Sci” when I watch a movie or read a novel. “How” can we beat this pesky “FTL” issue. How can we harness unlimited energy to benefit us all?
Over time, I came to a rather sobering realization, namely that there is one constant in these thoughts: immortality. Yes, eternal life, a literal fountain of youth. This is the ultimate goal of all human endeavor but it isn’t limited to humans, we are just the only ones who are self aware of it (as far as we know). The quest for immortality is the literal essence of life, sustaining its own self while striving for propagation which is nothing but copying of self with improvements where possible. Continue reading
I recently opinioned on the Wormhole Townhall meeting set up by notable CSM member and Hard Knocks leader Noobman. My concern was that the meeting itself had gone a very predictable path where individuals from Wormhole PvP alliances desperately tried to out-chest-beat each other while leaving many topics that really affect us all entirely unsaid. So far, so predictable but my comments and post spawned a ping from a HK line member effectively telling me to speak up or shut up. Either I make my concerns heard to Noobman / CSM or CCP or I am just another one of those /r/eve whiners.
That man had a point. While I ran this blog since 2009, I rarely go into the specifics what CCP should do to make the game a better place. I have no professional game development experience and also can only see a sliver of the game itself. EVE’s strength and weakness are the same, its massive, differentiated and highly integrated structure where one small tweak here causes a massive effect elsewhere. However its true that some areas in the game are in a pitiful state and maybe CCP doesn’t see it. Continue reading
Copy / Paste from announcement:
EVE Meetup 26th August 2017 at 6pm
26 August 2017 18:00 (Save to cal)
Alexandria, Virginia, United States
[DC|VA|MD] EVE Meetup 26th August 2017 at 6pm
* Mailing List (in-game): DCVAMD-Meetup
* Chat Channel (in-game): DCVAMD-Meetup
* Discord: https://discord.gg/zM2p7Y8
* Twitter: https://twitter.com/EVE_Loney
* Eve Forums: https://forums.eveonline.com/t/dc-va-md-area-monthly-eve-meetup-thread
**<<<<<<<<<<<<<<< EVENT DETAILS >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>**
* What: Meet, Greet, Eat, & Drink
* When: **Saturday, 26th August 2017 at 6pm-11pm**
* Where: https://www.tedsmontanagrill.com/tmg028.html (2451 Eisenhower Ave. Alexandria, VA 22331)
* How Many: Estimated 8-12 Pilots (had 49 different individuals show up combine total so far)
* Prizes: 1 Billion ISK & EVE pens (nothing too fancy)
**<<<<<<<<<<<<<<< EVENT DETAILS >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>**
* Pen http://i.imgur.com/5VnkK74.png
* Pen http://i.imgur.com/nEbpX0U.png
* Pen http://i.imgur.com/H5YPq6j.jpg
* Pen http://i.imgur.com/GcKTiOi.jpg
Thanks for your time and hope to meet up with you all soon.
* P.S. Close to I-495 and has plenty of (Free) parking and (Pay) parking.
* P.P.S. A 5 min walk (0.25 mile) from the Eisenhower Ave metro station.
CSM delegate Noobman and member of the most powerful wormhole alliance in the game kindly organized a townhall to update the wormhole community and ask a few questions. For my remaining two readers I provide a heavily biased summary below.
The full recording is here, at 2h, its manageable, there is so much repetition and group hugs (circle*** for some) that one can easily fast forward. Actual content maybe 10 minutes.
tl/dr Townhall meeting (real life or game) give the floor to those who take it and in general those are the ones with the most aggressive agenda. Extremism will always win in a debate as categorical statements are easier to digest and remember. There is no fighting it and hence I rarely, if ever participate in these events. Basically, the townhall confirmed what we all expected, Noobman and his friends in C5/C6 space have nothing to do with the wormhole space that I experience. Large-fleet, capital supported evictions, dozens of farming holes to make money, PvE as the necessary evil are literally a different game from mine. My purpose in their world is to be “content”, i.e. I serve the role as dumb prey. To that end, they want me to live in Wormhole space and throw me a few bones so that it becomes worth it. And when I get too visible, it should be easy to evict me. Actually, this is fine by me. I like gnawing on bones.
Here are some cliffnotes. Sorry if I missed anything, I tuned out a few times when the echo chamber reverberated too much. My comments in italics.
- Apparently, CCP has not forgotten about wormholes and fact many (shitloads) of CCP devs reside in low class wormhole space. Guess even CCP devs need PI.
- Noobman asked how the T3C changes had affected wormholers and the audience collectively went into EFT/Pyfa mode, started extolling the virtues of one ship over the other. Consensus emerged after a few minutes:
- Proteus, Tengu and Legion are useless. Loki is the only T3C worth flying.
- The halving of their tank and an increase in signature and DPS means that their role has changed from heavy tackle with staying power to tackle that needs a serious fleet to bail them out.
- The whole point that T3Cs are more flexible is irrelevant. Anyone basing out of a citadel has the ability to re-fit or take a specialized ship.
- I had always flown a Proteus in “bulldog” mode, holding on to the target and tried to kill it with my other character. I think these days are over. I have an active-tank fit with good DPS but it is very sensitive to neuting (and has no cap injector). I expect to move to Stratios soon. At least I won’t lose SP when it dies.
- Scanning changes
- We like it. A few glitches but overall its an improvement. Took CCP 3 (?) fixes but its workable now.
- Big discussion on spawn times of anomalies and signatures.
- I was surprised about how much HK and the rest of audience cared about PvE sites but its obvious, each chest-beating PvP player has a private farming hole where they run sites to make money.
- The spawn rates of anomalies apparently is “class wide”, i.e. a site only spawns if another dies in a same class Wormhole. With many, many holes being abandoned and accumulating sites (see my discussion about our C2 when we moved in), active holes are empty. The audience wanted a timer on each site that a newly spawned site despawns after a few days with a chance to conveniently respawn within the safety of their farming hole. Basically, they want Nullsec mechanics
- Suggestion that sleeper should scram more so that Player battleships can’t use their microjump drive to escape from PvP.
- The consensus was its too hard to find idiots like myself to kill. We are called “content” and we are tolerated in WH space for this purpose only. It should not be so hard to find, tackle and kill us.
- CCP is considering that change to add more scrams into sleeper sites.
- Drone aggro
- Apparently there is a bug that sleepers attack Drones more than they should.
- I have not seen it but if I had seen it I would have assumed that it was a new mechanic. For C2, I stopped using Gallente drone ships and went back to Caldari since drone micromanagement was just too tedious. If this had been intentional, I would have not cared. Sleepers are smarter NPC, so why wouldn’t they shoot at drones?
- I assume this mechanic eats into the AFK money making of their farming holes so it has to get fixed.
- Drifters. They are the Battleship-sized sleepers that infest C5 and C6 space when you kill a structure. They are hard to kill, persist and attack citadels. (and can be killed with a citadel).
- Consensus seemed to be that they should spawn if you have a Capital ship on grid or shooting the structure. This of course removes them as a game mechanic to teams like ours coming with Battleships from a C4 and kill them because (gasp!) its a fun game mechanic but this is obviously of no importance. ISK/hour is the only thing that counts
- The idea behind it is of course that the hardcore PvP-ers want more capital ships flown by incompetent fools in sites where they can be tackled.
- Industry and moons mining.
- CCP is thinking about it. Come back in 2018 maybe.
- Smaller temporary structures to help evictions.
- Without POS, eviction teams don’t have a safe space to log off. This makes evictions too hard and the suggestion was to develop a new structure that has a docking ring or something
- I personally wanted a smaller structure for temporary wormhole camping trips and if it is making evictions easier, so be it. If anyone wants to evict me, they can do it anyway so what do I care what they need to bring?
- Some conversation on using capital ships, cap chargers, dreads etc. I lost track what the discussion was about.