Fanfest Light

The EVE Online annual Fanfest came to a close yesterday and I presume the neckbeards are on their way home brimming with stories and headaches. Us unfortunate peasants who saw difficulties selling our significant others a trip to a windy rock in the North Atlantic as a romantic getaway vacation had to watch the gathering via Twitch.  And it was a good show.

First of all, CCP deserves credit for being very clear about the scope of the event.  A party was to be had, CSM was to be announced, information about the new refineries was to be shared and the new citizen science project was to be introduced.  Add to this the staple of graphics updates, some balancing announcement, the introduction of a few new capital ships and a new “incursion-like” PvE mechanic and we were done.  Lastly, CCP did announce the launch of a new VR game later this year, kind of like 3D tennis.  Looks neat.  I am sure if I had a VR headset I would look into it. I don’t and hence I won’t.

Famous curmudgeon Jester posted his concern that no new large-scale release was planned, the community shrugged and moved on.  For the nullsec teams that populate Reddit, just about enough content is released to keep them happy for a year.  However, the rest of us got exactly nothing.

Lets try a list of what I remember (please let me know if I missed anything):

  • New Player Experience: Continuous improvement.  All regions, obviously.
  • New PvE mechanic: Incursion-style raid mechanic with intelligent foes.  Likely only accessible for well organized, large teams. While the mechanic could be rolled out anywhere, the first iteration will be launched exclusively in Goon Space.
  • New faction captial ships.  Nullsec / Lowsec.
  • Citizen Science: Exoplanet hunting.  Why this is in the client and not on an App is not easy to understand.  But yes its for all regions, I guess.
  • Refineries and new moon-mining mechanic:  Nullsec / Lowsec only with no firm plans to do roll out anything to WH or High Sec
  • New shaders, new graphics.  Yes, a shiny Vexor, amazing graphics for the suns.  All regions.  EVE is really, really pretty.

Anything I forgot?  Oh yes, CSM 12.  A virtual sweep for the few Nullsec power blocs with a sprinkle of part-time wormholer Noobman and industrial generalist Steve Ronuken.  I wrote before about the CSM and am not too concerned about the lack of diversity.  The new delegates seem to be fairly experienced and hence will contribute to make the overall game better. However, the EVE community chooses their delegates based on their region and it is telling that true highsec / lowsec / WH representation could be achieved.

As usual, two items closed to my heart were entirely missing, a decent online fanstore that is realistic in its pricing and an integrated mobile App with its own development pipeline. Heck, I’d pay for that App.

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So, that was Fanfest 2017.  I am getting ready to play the exact same game until at least Summer of 2018 when maybe new things are released that affect my EVE.

Actually that reminds me, I’ll do a little Fallout 4 survival mode this morning.

Fanfest 2017 – Stream and Expectations

Fanfest 2017 is about to start and while I can not attend it in person, I am certainly watching the streams.  Nosygamer has a good list of sessions to watch on his blog.

Personally, I don’t expect big announcements.  Citadels in all their form have to be in the game for a while until the economy and the warfare settles.  While I am a little annoyed that the new refining complexes add nothing to Wormhole or High Sec space, I understand that they are trying to release content in a manageable way. Continue reading

CSM 12 – vote for a person, not a character

As inevitable as the tax man, the annual cycle of Council of Interstellar Management is back.   10 EVE Online players will be voted in over the next few weeks, their role is to be “representative” of the rest of us.  As with all elections, there is nepotism, favoritism and every permutation of internet journalism spewing nonsense because “the public has a right to know”.  But beyond the drama, the CSM does have a real and important role, they are our chance to influence the hobby that we all love.

Before both of you loyal, handsome and intelligent readers panic, I won’t “endorse” any candidates in this post and not rant and rave against specific powerblocs and playstyles.  This has been played out in the Main Stream Media.   No, I want to go back to basics and look at the role of the CSM from a player and from a company perspective and see what type of candidate would be most suitable. Continue reading

Attention span deficit

EVE Vegas is in full swing and watching #evevegas  and CCP’s stream makes me reminiscent of last year when I was actually in the audience, sitting next to the mercenaries and squealing with delight about announced capital changes.  Good times were had and I am sure my space friends are right now engaged in epic benders, smoked-filled rooms diplomacy and generally giving EVE nerds a good name.  Its even more of them this year than last and I am getting the feeling that EVE Vegas 2017 will be a thing for me especially since it looks like that an IOS (Illusion of Solitude, our Alliance) meetup could be a thing.

ios-vegas-2017

So, watching EVE Vegas makes me both nostalgic and highly excited about the game and the community.  So, why haven’t I logged in in nearly 2 weeks? Continue reading

Three Huzzahs for the Underdog

If I stuck with my cunning plan, I should write about No Man’s Sky today – alternating with EVE online.  If I did this, I would have to rely on other player’s accounts since I have not opened the game once for the last 2 weeks.  Well, that’s not entirely correct, I tried the other day but my PC blue-screen-of-deathed, likely fault of dodgy RAM or something but I choose to blame the game.  Also the interwebs may have infected me but I could not really bring up a good reason for logging in,  I had lost the storyline without being able to get back, you can not re-start the game at all (!) and basically, my experience would be flying from planet to planet, cursing the puny inventory and find an upgrade that marginally better than the last upgrade.

Looks like I am also not alone in this:

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EVE Online – What are beta clones?

So, the EVE Universe exploded this week with the announcement that EVE will become “free to play” with the introduction of “Alpha Clones” that offer new players the option to enjoy a single racial tree of ships up to a certain skill level.  Even the real world press picked up on it.

I won’t comment too much on this, better people than I have already done in depth analyses.  And universally, this change has been greeted with quite some enthusiasm: Continue reading

Mythbusting

EVE more than any other online hobby has a fantastically strong community borne from the game’s inherent complexity and the constant need to evaluate risk v. reward.  Inevitably with communities, group-think develops and members love to associate with each other by repeating each other, thus creating a) cohesion internally and b) separation externally. Case in point was this month’s random EVE-is-dying meme which – thankfully died as quickly as it flared up.  Consensus is, EVE is not dying.  It can be improved – it needs to improve, it needs to attract new players but it ain’t dead by a long shot.

While we are there, lets bust a few other myths.

 

Continue reading