I started a blog just for myself here, just for myself to write stuff and see what kind of crap I could write. Then I realised that I actually enjoyed to some extent spewing everything I’m thinking about on a certain topic onto the screen. So here I am following others to what seems to be a popular free blog hosting site, mainly for a cleaner interface so that when I do start bothering to attract readers, it’s not just the content that makes them want to claw their eyes out. Right now, though, I’m content speaking to my ‘future self’.
Anyway. As I’m sitting in an Amarrian FW system capturing a plex during the dead hours of the AU timezone (all this free LP), it’s time to continue that post on how exactly I was inspired to strive to be one of the great solo PvPers. Essentially these early posts will be my backstory. Something for potential dedicated readers to have a look at, or maybe newbies who in 5 years want to know the humble beginnings of a legend. lol.
So, New Eden. As mentioned previously, I joined this wonderful universe with all of the PvP experiences from being a pirate in PotBS, and was hungry for more. And I got more; my first contact with CCP’s wonderful, dangerous, scary, annoying, confusing universe was through DUST 514. Actually, the first time I ever heard about it was sitting on the toilet some years ago flipping through a magazine, and I just happened to stumble upon an article on EVE Fanfest. Intrigued, I looked up EVE Online. Minutes later back at my desk I was reading through the lore and chronicles. Another few clicks revealed to me I had to subscribe. Back then I just wasn’t persuaded I had to pay money to get visceral PvP experiences.
Fast forward a few years. DUST 514 comes out, I apply for closed beta. November 2012, I get invited, and I play daily, having great fun, hoping the apocalypse didn’t descend upon me. Eventually though, the buzz I got from the DUST trailers faded, the core game wasn’t solid at all, and the world didn’t actually end. DUST in closed beta got boring, but my mind wandered back to EVE. This time I opened up evelopedia, browsed through the EVE forums, read more chronicles. At one point I was so hooked on the lore that I tried single-handedly to decipher the Prophecy of Macaper. I spent fruitless hours trying to decode 514, even re-reading Dan Brown’s The Da Vinci Code to get into a puzzling mood.
However, not yet possessing a PC (I was an avid PS3 gamer back then and never saw the need to get a computer that could handle much more than browsing the web and playing Cookie Clicker), I did not bother with EVE. So instead I returned to DUST in the last days before it went open beta, joined a corporation called The Southern Legion, and it was smooth sailing from then until about the end of 2013, when the magic of Uprising, funnily enough, depleted. This coincided with the end of my secondary schooling period and it was as good a time as any to give building a PC a go. So I did, and here I am.
One of the things about DUST was that it was for me a gateway into New Eden. What I mean by this is that it wasn’t ‘New Eden’ in the sense that EVE Online is, but I feel in retrospect the fitting system, the weak meta-game, and the rare occasions when you actually felt like you were in the universe (the starmap, gazing outside the war barge before a battle, and to a greater extent getting involved in planetary conquest) made DUST the perfect environment to nurture my growing desire to play EVE, without substituting it entirely. Not to mention all the DUST forum-goers blabbering on about cool EVE things. I will never forgive those who gave me the impression tiericide in EVE meant I could kill anything with any other ship. I’ve learnt the hard way this is untrue. 😛
So we have PotBS giving me the inspiration to PvP, and DUST selling me New Eden. It follows that I subscribed to EVE, and spend the first months with the same corporation I had in DUST, with the same guys I chatted to on the ground now alongside me in space, and looking down at the planets I had been fighting on previously, it hit me then the sort of scale CCP was looking at. Prior to Fanfest 2014 and the announcement of Project Legion, I was a total CCP fanboi. I digress. (This was an obvious digression, to be honest most of this post is a huge digression from the original topic. I do it a lo- oh hell there I go again.)
Now starting EVE is all well and good, but we all know the learning cliff that must be scaled in-game is where the real issues with new player retention starts. In the beginning my goals to PvP was lost amongst the flurry of reading and learning I had to undertake; the first month was a blur of questions, answers, more questions, and PvE. I was training the right skills, but also being presented with so many other options for where to take my character skill-wise. The temptation to start up another account was extremely difficult to refuse. And as noted in the first post Inspiration post, there were many who doubted my ability to achieve, and I myself was letting myself hear these doubts. The flame was flickering; I needed another push.