BB 77. Stop the whining

Having Fun


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.



9 responses to “BB 77. Stop the whining

  1. First off, I appreciate the shout-out. This really is a nice, fresh perspective, and there’s a lot of good info in it.

    The Eve I’m playing doesn’t seem to be dying at all. Sure, I’ve gone through my own crises of faith, but in the end, the thing that needed to change was myself and my perceptions, not the game. The enjoyable content is there. Too many people see the game change slightly, or themselves change, and aren’t willing to adjust where they are, who they play with, and what they do to find a new match. There’s a reason a clock’s hands move… so they can adjust to reflect the times.

    • Thanks, glad you are on the positive side. I am just tired of the “EVE is dying” crap. It doesn’t help anyone, yes, yes misery loves company and all that. But we also mustn’t become CCP fanboys and drink the Kool-Aid. CCP has made many incredibly serious mistakes, several nearly wrecked the game. They gambled high and sometimes lost. They recovered and are still standing like some punch-drunk boxer in round 8. They need a proverbial “shot in the arm” and if VR is generating the cash and we generate the stories, so damn well be it. Go, CCP make a metric fuckton of money, blow your investors and reinvest your money into our community. Thats how business works and I am very glad that Hilmar and crew finally see CCP as a business and not as a cool, immature start up whose main IP was Viking recklessness.

  2. Splatus,

    I’d say you’re being a little too harsh with Sugar and not near harsh enough with Sion. As Talvorian rightly points out above, many players (Sugar and Sion included) are having trouble adjusting to changing worlds (in game and out). The difference is that Sugar is being honest about these difficulties while Sion is lashing out with malevolent intent. Sugar is distressed and despondent. Sion positively wants to harm CCP. It’s a big difference.

    I’ll also point out that Sion very intentionally quoted Sugar out of context in his latest takedown piece. She was expressing 10 years of disturbingly limited PvE development and Sion trumpeted that up to 10 years of neglect towards the entirety of Eve Online. Again, it’s a big difference. Sion really doesn’t give a damn who he harms. Even people he used to treat well.

    • Hi Dire, my apologies – let me put my comments into perspective. Criticizing Sion is easy. He is the spokesperson for a very specific group of players who – in my opinion – have shaped EVE the way it was last year but can not adapt to the new EVE as we find it today. That is sad, detrimental to our community (that he said doesn’t exist) and certainly not helpful to find New Bros. Under my comments lies the wish that he comes around and becomes a leader in New Eden, leads the Goons to new conquests and glory. But maybe he is content to sit at Mittens feet, drinking hot chocolate and dreaming about the old days.

      Criticizing Sugar is much harder for me since I have a lot more respect for her. We talked IRL and I supported her CSM tenures. I saw her flame out and was saddened by her slowly withering away. I do believe she suffers balancing EVE with real life and she is not alone. Read my blog, it is full of posts saying “guys, I can’t handle this, I am going to do something else”. You will – however – not find that I blame CCP for not adapting their game to my reality. I do not expect EVE to be a game that I can pick up for 30 min and “frag”. Instead I look not what I can not do but what I can do. I started industry (badly but fun), I even mined the other day (eerily soothing, zenlike) and I run my PI as my main (only!) income source. These are all things I can do. Sugar needs to make a decision whether she wants to find an area she can cope with and be part of our community or take a break. What she should not do is to blame her frustration onto CCP – thats not fair to the rest of us and does not help drive New Bros into our crosshairs New Eden.

  3. Pingback: BB77 Everything Has a Season | The Ancient Gaming Noob

  4. Huh… guess I’m just old cheese or something… not even on your list anymore huh? =]

    But it does seem you and I are on the same page my old friend. I am sick unto death with the negativity… I’ve just godsdamned had it. Be a part of making things better or GTFO is how I see it. I too have seen lows and highs… and EVE is changing and evolving… It aint the game I logged into that first day back in ’11… it aint the game I played when I first jumped the crazy marble… and I for one will be loggin in until the server, or I myself, goes dark.

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