YC117 (2015)

So in Australia it’s hit the new year now.

I have a bunch of things I want to achieve in real life, but also in EVE. The distinction between the two grow ever fainter, though. EVE is becoming a part of life. I suppose this is something I can say being truly a beneficiary of the twenty-first century, having been brought up amongst technology and its rapid growth. I can say with confidence, despite the critics and disbelievers, that a game can be as crucial to the life of a human, as crucial as perhaps an early life of athletic training, or someone’s love for books and reading, perhaps even one’s education.

At least a game like EVE can be.

I have two resolutions for EVE Online. The first is to continue writing consistently for this blog.

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Free hugs… in EVE.

Speaking of the community, I’ve had a lot of interesting conversations in the Spoonful of Sugar channel recently, run and occupied by current CSM member Sugar Kyle and friends. You have to understand that by interesting, it doesn’t mean the other discussions aren’t. These ones are interesting to me because they affected me a little more; the standard discussions and conversations that go on in there are also extremely educational and enlightening to watch.

The first one came up a handful of days ago, when Sugar asked me whether I considered myself a ‘newbie’ of hers. My interpretation of that was that she raised me as an EVE Online baby until I was well enough to fend for myself. I answered in a strange way that didn’t really say anything I guess:

[ 2014.12.22 01:49:03 ] Revileushin Eyri > hmm
[ 2014.12.22 01:49:46 ] Revileushin Eyri > well you made this channel and started talking back to me
[ 2014.12.22 01:50:01 ] Revileushin Eyri > new players just need that response
[ 2014.12.22 01:50:22 ] Revileushin Eyri > i can ask questions everywhere but here the ones that bugged me the most i could ask and have a  chance of getting them answered
[ 2014.12.22 01:50:59 ] Revileushin Eyri > if that answers anything 😉

What I said was true, but what Sugar wanted to know was whether I was a ‘pupil’ of hers, and I only brushed on that slightly. Upon further consideration, I could’ve worded it better, but I doubt I ever would have fully admitted to being 100% Sugar Kyle’s student, as cool as that would have been. My beginnings in EVE were influenced by a lot of people, and I don’t think I would ever be able to thank one without thanking them all for guiding me along a path that didn’t end (and hasn’t ended yet) with a lot of fire, pods melting, and me quitting the game.

Continue reading Free hugs… in EVE.

EVE and bubbles

EVE’s community is multifaceted and complex, so complex that it seems shallow because usually, you stick to one ‘bubble’ of the community, which floats amongst thousands of other bubbles, some of which are conjoined and connected, others that enormous, some miniscule, some inside others, which in turn have thousands of smaller bubbles inside them.

If EVE consisted of a giant bubble called “New Eden”, there would be two smaller bubbles inside that, called “Combat” and “Non-Combat”.

Inside Combat, you can get “PvP” and “PvE”. Within PvP, fleet warfare. Within fleet warfare, small gang.

That’s the bubble I’m mostly interested in right now.

Someone might point out the tenuous but very real connection non-combat activities such as manufacturing could have on small gang PvP. I agree, this bubble metaphor isn’t really apt; the human brain is a better description of it; nodes and clusters of connected and interconnected neurons, some paths strongly linked, others not as much, many still being formed and reformed. But for the sake of simplicity, we’ll stick to bubbles. Also, I like bubbles.

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Why do we fight?

So people actually read the blog, it seems, and I can’t get away with saying whatever the hell I want anymore (without anyone noticing). That doesn’t mean I’ll stop writing whatever I’m thinking, though. I’m too far in now. 🙂

Anyway, one reader decided to discuss my last post with me, in particular, the insulted tone I layered on when I described the incoming enemy forces, when initially, we were planning on going after what we believed to be a lone Tengu with four men in the first place. Indeed, after he baited us into fighting, it would still seem we were not playing fair, and by that assumption, I could not say that his comment about us being cowards could be ignored because he was one, because we actually made a cowardly move trying to gank his Tengu.

Not even sure if that makes sense.

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Testing our strength.

Today a wardec went active against our alliance. I was mildly surprised because I had never heard of the corporation before. Initially I felt somewhat… smug? Happy? Slightly amused? Anyway, I had a look at the killboard of the attacking corporation, and nothing seemed to point to them having a reason for wardeccing us, so I simply assumed it was an alt corp of someone we had managed to annoy. From the perspective of a pirate alliance, I suppose it’s an indication we’re doing well to have created enough ripples to cause something like this to happen.

However, research is your best friend when engaging wardec targets. And since it’s so easy to move around corporations, killmails and lossmails can be lost in a web that can only be traced by painstakingly following someone’s employment history; even then, the full picture isn’t always painted. You need to know who their friends are, first and foremost. You need to know the ships they bring to bear, the kinds of fights they get into. My research was inadequate, it seems.

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ISK makes monsters of men.

For all the new players looking at running incursions, there is a downside when considering running them now, as I noticed yesterday.

Now, incursions ARE probably the safest way to make buttloads of ISK in EVE Online, yes. Especially if you have a group of friends to run them with every now and then, how you want to and how you feel like.

If NOT, if you are alone in your quest to make piles of ISK in your fresh shiny battleship or logistics cruiser, you’ll probably go looking for an established incursion community. This is where the problem becomes apparent.

Trust is so vital in EVE Online, all the more so because it is so scarce. Public incursion communities run a tight operation, with strict rules, mainly to ensure they have as little chance of being sabotaged as possible. It’s not so bad; the draw of making ISK generally keeps everyone in line and obedient.

It’s not like people don’t break rules, it just doesn’t seem to happen in a major way. But where there are rules, there are people who want to break them. Or in other words, there is tension between some, and the system. People who want to fit their ships their  way. People who want fleets to be flown that way. They clash with people who abide by the rules, when in the end both sides simply are thinking: “My way is the best way to make more ISK.”

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Best frenemies.

Today was a haze of PvP. So many fights they’re blurring over one another in my head already, it’s dizzying. Suffice it to say that I had a ton of fun today (minus being smartbombed by a Tengu in my training clone), but I’ve had enough, so I’m docking up and settling in to write a post.

The cool thing about today’s roams was that we met a group we had never met before in the same space we roam, and fought them, lost to them, then fought with them. It’s incredible, the kinds of connections that can only be forged in the aftermath of conflict. Perhaps that can explain marriage. But I digress into an area I have little experience in.

Anyway, these folks were a part of the A Band Apart. alliance, one I recognised due to my occasional forages into Rixx Javix’s blog, which I initially found thanks to someone telling me about his corporation’s public frigate FFA competitions.

Such a tenuous connection, but one nonetheless, and one that I noticed when I died to them. So I went ahead and mentioned it in local, something to the tune of “I’ve always wanted to die to ABA.”

One private conversation and a few minutes later, we were having a uproarious time with the guys in New Eden Renegades (forgive me if I got that slightly incorrect, just going off the top of my head), who have already taught me a thing or two about how to have even more fun in FW space than we already were. It’s really simple, how they’ve done it. So simple, it makes me beat myself over the head and wonder why I had not thought of it before. So elegant, so effective, and yet even a new player like me overlooked the possibilities of this path.

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Gifts from CCP!

This new dev blog here should lead you to the link to receive 20 days free multiple character training (or 20 days to add to your main, which I believe was an option) to ensure you and your alts remain active for the festive season! Woohoo! Thanks CCP, Imogen can polish off those taxation and broker fee skills now. \o/

I also particularly enjoyed the trinkets and collectibles they handed out, especially the little nod to the organisers of EDU. Satisfied that I was a part of at least one of the events those items celebrated.

We’re fast approaching Christmas day now, and I’m feeling a reflective post coming for my first year of EVE, and first year of blogging at that.

UPDATE (20:55 18/12/2014 EVE TIME): A corporation member tried redeeming the 20 days free time, and apparently he has to purchase more game time to acquire the 20 days, if he wants to apply it to an active queue. In other words, extended an existing character’s game time requires a purchase, applying it to an empty queue slot doesn’t?

UPDATE 2 (a few minutes later): I failed at interpretation. You can’t extend game time at all. It’s just 20 days free training for another character in an active account. Derp.

EVE Online savings account.

I created a trade character for the purpose of trying to bolster the weak trade hub in the region our alliance had originally set up in: Derelik.

That changed, though. A few disagreements with the leadership (oops) had me stripped of responsibility over that task. Water under the bridge; I realised it wasn’t an easy job anyway, so I’m a little relieved when I was told I could stop. We’ve moved again anyway… a little too quick for my liking, but I digress.

So, I’ve been left with a 1.7 million SP character in Trade with lots of free order slots. So I decided to turn her into my very own savings account.

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Learning from the best

Mentioned before that I got started running incursions with The Ditanian Fleet. Well, I still am, and recently acquired my ‘Training FC’ tags. What this means is I’m at a stage where I’m asking as many questions as I can, trainers and current FCs throw hypothetical scenarios at me, and when I ask or an FC asks me to, I am to head what they call a training fleet. In TDF, an incursion training fleet (for Vanguard sites, which require fleets of around 10-11 people) includes one extra logistics pilot to the usual two for a little more safety, and involves a current FC/trainer to oversee the training FC as the ‘backseat’.

Basically, for the rest of the pilots involved, it’s business as usual (with an extra logibro), and in the event something causes the training FC to mess up, there is a safety net in the form of that extra logistics, and the ability for the backseat to take over.

New Megathron to FC incursions from.
New Megathron to FC incursions from.

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