Welcome to the reincarnation of my blog. This will be a public forum (why else would I publish it to a blog?) but mostly I plan to use this space to organize my thoughts about EVE Online and maybe a few random thoughts that are only peripherally related to EVE. I'm familiar with the characters on EVE forums, so comments will be moderated. Trolls, griefers, and those with nothing constructive to add will be ignored. I may also delete anonymous postings; I'm putting myself out here and showing you my face - the least you can do is show yours.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Barrier to Entry

I wrote recently about the grind and its importance.  Over the last few days, I've been thinking about The Grind and I've been reading a bit about risk aversion. Here are some random thoughts on the subject.  Sometime soon, I'll organize them into something more cohesive.

It takes a better part of a week to grind through level 4 missions to earn enough isk to buy a ship worthy of combat.  It takes 30 seconds to lose that ship.

I do not pay real $ for isk.  Never have, never will.  That isn't a part of my game.  Frankly, I think this is a mechanic that should be removed, though I doubt very much that it will.
  • $ >>> isk allows people with more $ than time to fund players with more time than $.  This is a win-win-win.  The warmonger sells a plex and buys a Vagabond and a couple of Drakes for his weekend jollies.  The carebear who has just spent the last month running L4 missions buys his plex so that he can continue to run L4 missions.  CCP gets $20 and an account it might not otherwise have.  Change this relationship to much and the whole thing will collapse.
  • I pay my $20/mo to play EVE and I'm not interested in paying any more than that to enjoy the game.  CCP may choose to increase the price of a subscription and I will gladly pay it (assuming the increase is reasonable).  But I expect that my $20 pays for a certain amount of entertainment.  I'm not interested in spending $20 to log on and $20 for equipment.
  • There are cheaper MMOs with more readily available combat.  Combat is only one aspect of EVE.  It is a VERY important aspect, but it is just one. Industry and Mining do not generate the legends that EVE is famous for, but without those two aspects, the game would be as flat as the other instant on combat games.  The depth of the game is what keeps me spending my $20/mo, not the PVP.
I've been to null sec.  I wasn't impressed.

  • The logistics of moving ships to null sec are daunting and JF pilots who fund their PVP with plex have little motivation to move anyone elses ships but their own! 
  • General apathy and suspicion toward new recruits.
  • No mentors, no assistance with TS/VENT, No advice about intel channels, outdated forums, and yet, I was held accountable for knowing all of that information or risk being fined.
  • CTAs - You were expected to be in the target system wether or not there was a a scheduled operation.  Oh, no ratting (we're guests) and you must fly a ship/fit from the pre-approved list (on the outdated forums that you don't have passwords to, nevermind that you can't fly shield tanks)
  • No Ratting out of fear of increasing (decreasing?) true sec status.
  • No High Sec missioning - we won't have our alliance image sullied
  • Lag is a valid battle tactic.  PVP is 50+ vs 50+.  Winner is the one with the most cap ships.
  • You don't like it?  HTFU or GTFO!  This is FUN!

 Skills:  minimum SP requirements - 25m sp or about 1 year of game play (!!!)  Oh, yeah and good luck if you're the poor soul who trained armor tanks and Gallente ships (because there was some mistaken expectation that you were supposed to do that if you rolled a Gallente Character)

PST Time Zone - Even your East Coast friends are logging off just as you come on.  Recruit your West Coast friends to EVE?  What's EVE?  Oh you mean that spreadsheet game?  The one with the inverted learning curve?  The one that I have to grind for a year before I can do anything interesting?  The one where a fight means pressing a couple of keys, waiting and waiting 30s to find out who wins? The one with the broken PVE mechanics?  (My friends' arguments, not mine).

Yes, I know what your comment will be already:  "Why do you even bother playing EVE?"  When the shit hit the fan in June, I considered all of this.  By August, I biomassed.  I gave my stuff to a pilot that I flew with early in my EVE career, a fellow who lives 2000 miles away who I never met in RL.  He expressed true sorrow over my decission and my face was wet when I pressed the skull and crossbones button.  Honestly, I didn't even know what his RL name was when I left, but you can be sure I know it now.

I'm back in EVE now.  A GM was kind enough to resurrect my 40m sp character (or else I probably wouldn't have bothered).  I run L4 missions with a bunch of new pilots.  I help them with their fits.  I teach them the game mechanics.  We grind missions while patiently waiting for the skills to level up so we can fly those shiny T2 cruisers.  And every once in a while, we take frigates out and get blown up.  With any luck, they'll be pretty decent pilots next year.

1 comment:

  1. I dunno what draconian null-sec entity you tried to join, but I've never had to deal with half as bad that.

    SP limits do usually apply still, I mean, you want your members to be able to fly something half decent. Average limits I see these days are 5-10mil. That limit is typically ignored if the player has shown a clear desire to PvP. I'd feel fine about accepting a 2-3 mil sp character if they went about killing stuff (or at least trying) before applying.

    The only thing I can even half agree on is the PST timezone part, and that's just because you do actually need some trained skills to win fights.