How do you know its summer? When a prominent blogger can’t find content, asserts that EVE is dying, publishes a post to that effect that ignites the blogosphere. To be fair, there are several bloggers out there who have a more nuanced view and I enjoy reading the posts from Mike Azariah, Jason Quixos (new to me, great writer) and Talvorian Dex (who focuses mostly on blogs and dissemination of information). May their voices prevail but I fear, not. Inflammatory panic stories always get more attention and hence the greater community is always exposed to stories how CCP is killing their top game by sheer incompetence.
Edit: I forgot to link Tur’s post. Read this. The man speaks the truth. Shame unto me and my progeny 7 generations down for forgetting you Tur. And beers are on me (again?) next meetup.
And when I read these posts, I get annoyed. People who don’t like the game should simply fade away like good old soldiers should do and not ruin the fun for the rest of us who log in (at least occasionally), find our friends, chat, shoot things, get shot by things and try to have a good time.
And yes, today I broke my promise not to write another Blog Banter (I am utterly tired of the concept btw) after reading two articles, one by nullsec spinmaster and Bittervet Sion Kumitomo who laments that CCP has to change to make money (wherein he proudly uses his position on the
high school student council CSM to berate CCP on their assessment of success, financial maven that he is) and later the post from Sugar Kyle who adapted her lifestyle to a point where there is no space for EVE and somehow blames CCP for it.
While I could easily ignore Sion’s manifesto, his angry, bitter and twisted logic speak to the core constituency of EVE – those who were there before Incarna, at the famous Goon-kills-BoB war, those who made large, organized Empires in New Eden “a thing”. The Bitter Vets. Face it, ladies, those days are gone. His diatribe reminds me of a conversation I had in Berlin a few years after the wall came down. Someone told me (beer was involved and yes, I paid for his) just how much better East Germany was. After 1 minute of asking, turns out he had grown up privileged, parents doctors, party members etc. Oh sure, his time was better. He had the school, the house, the car, the TV, the Levis Denim. Similarly, Nullsec SUCKED before the recent changes; a smaller entity didn’t have a chance to even try to make a living. Relentlessly exterminating start-ups and turning them into renters or serfs was the thing that all Nullsec coalitions did, sucking the oxygen out of the room. Oh sure, but for Sion and his buddies, these were the grand old days where he could strut at meetups and be recognized as “someone who matters”. Sorry dude, the wall fell.
Secondly Sugar. I met her a few times at regional meetups and EVE Vegas etc and I had so much respect for her passion and competency that I rejoiced when she was the motor of not just one CSM but two. She burned out from that and I understand, working with self-absorbed narcissistic and socially inept people like most other CSM members can take the wind out of your sails. She burned out hard but now blames the game for her inability to find enjoyable content. This is bitter and a tad unfair. I want my old Sugar back.
The problem is that both Sion and Sugar (and all the other hangers-on) are right. EVE does have to evolve, rejuvenate, invent itself, now more than ever. We need new players, we need younger players, we need players who didn’t grow up with WoW and then migrated but came from console games, puzzles, shooters etc. Many elements that Sion and Sugar talk about are 100% correct, the lack of engaging PvE content (especially the recent grind fest whateveritwascalled) and bringing in reasons to fight for space, tooth and nail, until the last Rifter is a smoldering wreck. CCP has to innovate by moving engagement away from the dying PC to mobile platform and not just stand there like Seagull at Fanfest with a big grin telling us that CCP is making an App that may in future even be nearly as good as the Apps we have been using for years. No, we need PI, industry and scouting games on iPads, damn it. Make it happen.
Lastly, there is CCP’s big problem of talking about their vision without falling into the Incarna trap again. Seagull fixed many issues in the game and allowed a complete overhaul of Sovereignty, Capitals, wormholes and industry to happen in – by CCP standards – record time. Whats next? The next big thing? Sion asks and he asks rightly. CCP tells us the next big thing is… VR (virtual reality). With “Arena” and “Valkyrie”. Great. /slowclap. Whats in store for us? Is there anything in store for us?
If we just had an elected body of players who would be under CCP’s NDA and could bridge our desires with CCP’s strategy.
Whining and lamenting “EVE is dying” gets us bloggers the page views and maybe comments, the universal currency of self obsession. But it does not help bring in new players. It does not bring in “content” and it does not bring in excitement of spending time in our amazing sandbox. If Sion stooped so low to read this blog, I say: Stop whining. Get out there, undock, fight for space, fight for content, found a bank, built a citadel, rebuild Goons into the anarchic fighting force that they were known for. Scheme, scam, steal, awox but above all, bring positive energy to the game. Nobody wants to read your tearful analysis harking after your good old days.
To Sugar, please quit EVE. Do not not feel you owe us, you have a life and many wonderful things to fill your time with. Enjoy time with tomatoes, dogs and friends – but please stay out of our attempt to make this social experiment that we call EVE work for us.