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Friday, January 29, 2010

EVE Blog Banter Special Edition: Why We Love EVE Online

The Mind Behind the Trinity Sisters
Sitting at her desk
Cape Canaveral, Florida

Welcome to my special installment of CrazyKinux's Blog Banter, where he asks us, "Why do you love EVE".

An interesting and more complex question than I thought before I sat down and really started thinking about it.

Besides the fact that EVE is unique in the sense that it is an original creation of the sci-fi genre... not latching itself onto any other existing franchise. The events and changes in this game happen because the players are making them happen, not because thats how it happened in the movies. And its not some.. "go raid this dungeon and kill this boss" and then 2 hours later it respawns like nothing ever happened.

In EVE.... the "bosses" are groups of hundreds of players, enemy alliance, bands of pirates, and elusive mega-personalities... living, breathing, players.

Entire regions of space are owned and controlled by massive player alliances, with no NPC interference at all.... epic battles and "land grabs"... espionage... you name it. Approximately 30 systems belonging to the Goonswarm were lost within the last few days. The systems will not reset. The Goons will not get them back outside of fighting to get them back. All of this... player driven content... and guess where the Goons are moving? Syndicate. That will make them my happy new neighbors, and will more than likely cause changes to how we function in our region of space. These ripple effects happen everywhere, constantly.

The most important part of all of this is that everyone in EVE plays on one single server (or, cluster of servers, joined together). If you know someone who plays EVE... "What server do you play on?" is not something that needs to be asked. We all play out here together. And that leads to one incredible community.

People become legendary... take for instance Helicity Boson, famed Pirate.... the scourge of the miner.... for putting effort into organizing an event to shake up those who take mining as their main source of income, some, becoming complacent -a dangerous attitude to have in EVE. I am pretty sure not a single pilot in New Eden doesn't know her name now... and her spawn, "Hulkaggedon".

And on the other hand, there is Chribba. Not an uber combat pwn u pilot... but a respected industrialist..... hundreds came to his aid to help defend one of his POS's that was recently attacked, just because he is known, and respected. And quickly the attacking corp withdrew, underestimating the power of a good reputation and friends.

Anything you want to be.... do... or become in EVE is possible. It is limitless.
So you want to be Boba Fett and be a bounty hunter? Go for it. Players put bounties on others heads, there is money to be made there.

Become a mercenary...... maybe an industrial corp wants to cut off a competing industrial corp in their system from main trading hubs. They will hire a mercenary corp to declare war on them for them (since typically, industrialists are not highly trained in combat skills), and then they profit as their competitors can no longer haul their goods to and from their destinations... because you... the mercenary... have been hired to do so.

There is another aspect of EVE I think many may take for granted... or will even deny - Roleplay..... In EVE more than any other MMO I have ever played (starting in '99 with EQ1).. people truly roleplay their character. Just take a look at the massive amount of EVE blogs.... almost all of them written "in character".

Take Maeve for example. She is an industrialist. She mines, she missions, she daydreams of adventure one day, joining a wing of her alliance in 0.0; but for now is perfectly happy to stay in her quiet system, grease to her elbows, and hair a mess.... building nothing but drones. Not because she can't build things other than drones, but because that is part of her character. She just loves her drones, and every combat ship she flies boasts a full bay of a variety of what she lovingly calls, "her babies".

In EVE you never know what you are up against.... you never know what skills that pilot that just locked you has.... what surprises up that sleeve.... what weaponry... what drones.... are friends waiting for a command to warp right on top of you in ambush?? Definitely not as simple as looking at that human warrior, seeing with your own eyes exactly what armor he has on, and knowing his level and what spells exactly to use most effectively against him.

In EVE you are not just another Human Warrior, or Elf Mage, grinding for the best gear you can get, becoming a cookie cutter of every other class like you. In EVE... you are what you make yourself. And many people form who they become based on a personality they have placed (maybe unknowingly) onto their character.

Pirate, bounty hunter, industrialist, hauler, spy, even eco-warriors.... these are not classes you choose in EVE, this is who you become. All in one New Eden... all connected... together.

UPDATE :: February 8th, 2009 ::

I'm sure pretty much everyone who was involved in this fantastic blog banter knew CK was announcing his winners this morning. Well... technically a few days ago, but more entries than he anticipated rightly pushed him back a few. Personally, at my sloth-pace, it would have taken me weeks to not only read all 56 but to judge which were the best on top!

So I dragged my sleepy little self to my computer this morning to see what was new in interweb-land, as I do. Saw CK's post on Facebook.... so I clicked.... definitely NOT expecting to have been placed anywhere in the top of some dozens of incredible entries. The little greedy monster inside secretly hoped I made it in the top 10.

Of course my eyes fell on #1 first.. I mean come'on, you know you did too!

I wanted to read the winning post first thing! (because I admittedly have only read about a dozen or so, so far). What was that? "Wench with a Wrench".... I blinked.. haven't had coffee yet.... refresh the page.... read the whole post this time... maybe I was being tricked... reading it wrong?

"1st Prize: Wench with a Wrench"

I have to say how incredibly excited and humbled to be placed at the top. Seriously. I don't win things, and I am no writer! (But that doesn't mean I'm not taking my $100 and running off to the EVE store now!)

Thanks CK... and thanks to the rest of the pilots out there who participated. And as CK requested, my email - lea (at) leadidit (dot) com .

Oh... and I just wanted to share my personal favorite of all the entries.... Ecliptic Rifts Boom dee ah dah

Fly safe! \0/

Friday, January 22, 2010

In Times of War... we keep on keepin' on...

Maeve Trinity
Octanneve V – Moon 1
Federation Customs Assembly Plant


A wrench went spinning across the tiled floor of Maeve's quarters, hitting the wall in a clatter. It had slipped from her hands, she was distracted. With a long sigh she carefully lifted the Warrior I Drone she was detailing from her lap and onto the bench beside her. She was never quite happy with how they came off the assembly line, and the artist blood in her wouldn't be happy if she left her Trinity Drones without some mark of character and beauty. She wanted them to be sturdy, obviously finished by hand. This didn't make a hill of beans once on the market, but she did it anyway.
A Trinity Drone, pestering a big angry Serpentis Pirate.

Maeves source of distraction came from a recent transmission of a declaration of war against her entire alliance.

Intel said they were hired, by who? Anyones guess was as good as anothers.

But as a little time passed, it became apparent these guys were just looking for easy pickings... limiting their members to systems around Jita, likely hoping for an easy target passing through the trade route. But as more intel came pouring in, it seemed the vast majority of the Corp who declared war on our alliance spent their time docked in stations. Hopefully whoever it was didn't pay them much to declare this war.

So life continues normally for now in Solitude, taking jobs from customs, spending time looking at the stars while listening to the hum of her Hulks mining lasers... and manufacturing her drones. Though, this didnt stop Maeve from feeling on edge. Constantly monitoring her local population channel, inspecting every red and even neutral to enter the system.

She knew the alliance had scouts monitoring the pipe in and out of Solitude... so far so quiet.....

Maeve popped a reel of captured images into Rigels projector, and sat back and watched some images from some previous Serpentis engagements.

Trinity Drone VICTORIOUS!

"Damn I love my Domi." Maeve thought out loud, Rigel bleeping agreeably. And pondered thoughts of how she might hold up if indeed, the war was brought to Solitude.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Me? Podcast?

The Mind Behind the Trinity Sisters
Sitting at her desk
Cape Canaveral, Florida

So..... I've been thinking about trying my hand in podcasting....

I have no experience in it.... but.... I dunno... just thoughts rolling around in my head about it. I have not mentioned these thoughts to anyone, or even done any kind of research other than listening to everyone elses podcasts (lol)

So I randomly blurted it out to my husband last night... and he smirks and says... "I had a feeling you'd been thinking about that.... with your EVE blog and everything..."

"Really?" I thought...... hmmm....

We end up wandering into the computer room later and he is sitting there, again, smirking... and he says, "So you know how you said you were thinking about podcasting and I had a feeling? Well I bought this a couple of weeks ago...."

And he pulls out this fancy pants shock mounted MXL 990 condenser microphone along with a pop filter and a swiveling boom to attach to my desk.

I think he is psychic.

So now its on.

My little random thoughts in the back of my head have to be pushed out... but where do I start?

Should I go it alone?

What would my topic be? EVE? Gaming in general? .. I do have gamer ADD.....

What do you guys think? I sorta feel like now I can't let my husband down!

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Hulkageddon Over : My thoughts

The Mind Behind the Trinity Sisters
Sitting at her desk
Cape Canaveral, Florida

I am an industrialist. Have been for the 2 years I've been playing, in and out of null sec space. Admittedly I've always had a bit of curiosity of the piracy aspects of EVE, and have many people in New Eden who are Pirates I would call friend, even though I know they would pod me in a second given the opportunity.

So I took my alt (also, 2 years old).. and participated in Hulkageddon.

Not because I am mean spirited.... but I knew it was going to go down whether I was part of it or not. So I set Maeve's Hulk safely in its hangar and I took the opportunity to learn. To learn how to defend myself, and what to watch for, by putting myself in the place of those who would attack me, and to learn the complexity and dangers of earning low security status.

I personally thought Helicity did a bang-up job organizing the event... it brought a lot of people together, and shockingly, the people I flew with weren't the sniveling f-bomb dropping ass-hats I imagined they all might be. They were just like the people I flew with in my industrial corp. Organized, friendly, and even honest (ship salvage payout was always equally distributed amongst the fleet, of perfect strangers... pirate strangers, mind you).

I also will agree though, it hopefully brought to light a glaring flaw in the system. That money can be MADE suicide ganking in high security space, via insurance (I could fit a catalyst, with T1 guns and faction ammo, and the insurance payout was MORE than what I spent on it all together) While at the same time, insurance on a Hulk doesnt even begin to cover a fraction of cost of the Hulk on its own... without any fittings at all.

Piracy and danger should go hand and hand. But Hulkageddon is an example where danger is minimal at best, and this situation can be taken advantage of easily by a few freshly rolled alts, taking down a veteran player -even at his keyboard- in an expensive T2 ship with little to no defense or chance of escape.

My suggestion as a solution?
There should not be insurance payouts for ships lost to CONCORD.

Additional defensive and escape methods for mining barges should be implemented. I watched first hand a Hulk pilot trying to escape, but with 4-5 destroyers warping directly onto you at once, bumping your align, and then unleashing all hell on you, you simply have zero chance no matter how alert you are.

Macro miners don't attempt to escape... and personally, I feel no pity for them. They deserved their losses, and their poddings. I am also hoping CCP realizes just how rampant macro mining is. The amount of pod losses is evidence of this.

Otherwise... now that the simplicity of this is so well known.... I think it will become more and more common, and not exclusive to events like Hulkaggedon, where Helicity was kind enough to give a very fair and far warning that it was going to happen.

Fly safe everyone! 07

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

The Hulkaggedon

Maeve Trinity
Octanneve V – Moon 1
Federation Customs Assembly Plant


Maeve stood in the station hangar overlooking her just delivered Hulk.

Sighing, she looked down at her datapad displaying transmissions and reports of a rumored pirate mass invasion that had been coined by one "Helicity Boson" as "Hulkaggedon". Reports said the onslaughts begin tomorrow. Almost exactly a full day after she'd finally finished her long and arduous training for the beast... the Hulk.... target #1.

Maeve scratched the back of her head, a mass of tangled and piled hair, and began pacing, chewing her nails nervously. Her bank had just been drained dry again acquiring the ship and its various fittings. She needed to get back out there and make use of it to rebuild her wallet.... it also didn't help that her drones were not selling, despite that she priced them at the lowest in the system. Even if they did sell, she didn't have the minerals to build more.

"What if they come?...... what if they come....?" Quickly she glanced back at her Hulk, its new hull shining, bursts of flame spewing from its powerful engines. "I can't risk it..... not right now.... what timing..... rotten luck....."

She scrolled her datapad to her wallet balance, a sad, paltry 176 million isk.

Sighing in resignation, she clicked her coms, "Please deliver the Dominix "Delvian" into my launch bay.." clicking the coms back off, "Looks like my drones will be hunting rats for Federation Customs."