My Past III: Eve Online
I had a good time there on Defias Brotherhood, with my unique playingstyle. I did play quite a lot, easily a few hours a day on average, but not all that much of instancing and actually “playing the game” the way it probably was intended by Blizzard. It was a mix of everything, with most time spend on walking around, talking to characters, killing alliance in the (non-instanced) world and sometimes a bit of “playing the game”. All of this as much as possible In Character, simply because it made things much more enjoyable for me. Also doing raiding In Character made it a lot less stressful, the frustration after a wipe quickly fades away if you continue to be In Character. You play a game for fun, keep it fun and immerse yourself into the game, it worked for me. It might sound a bit awkward and it probably feels like that in the beginning, but there’s no need to feel silly for doing it, those that do not are the ones being silly. Seriously.
Enough ranting about playing games In Character for now and I should stop calling other people silly. I’ll continue with my little story instead. I was aware that WoW wasn’t the game for me for a long time, I wasn’t really “playing the game” and if I did I got quickly bored of it. I’m not going to deny it’s a very good game, it’s an incredibly polished and well-made game, probably the best MMO created so far, but it doesn’t mix well with my rather idealistic view on MMOs. The whole item-hunting (be it in raiding / PvP’ing /questing), it doesn’t me interest me (anymore). Leveling up. Following mechanical goals that supposedly give you some sense of achievement. I don’t fall for it. I’m not a rat. Or well, perhaps I guess I’m just pretending to not fall for it and still partly do. But WoW isn’t for me. In my time on Defias Brotherhood, I enjoyed roleplaying and just playing In Character together with others the most. And WoW, while being a beautiful world, isn’t the ideal environment for that. It’s all a bit meaningless and unrealistic. For roleplaying in a MMO, actions need to have consequences or it will simply not be too realistic, especially not when there are asshats involved. WoW is way too mechanically restrictive, it’s a small static world and having most of the players being stuck in instances all day, grinding away doesn’t help much.
I realised all this while I was still playing WoW, it’s probably where my rather unique playstyle came from. But I still enjoyed playing the game a lot. I created my own fun, as if it was a little sandbox instead of a Diablo-style item-hunting MMO. And I did have a lot of fun. Next to that, like many other MMO players, I enjoyed the whole community a lot. Just logging in to chat for a few minutes before going to sleep and finding yourself still behind your computer screen 3 hours later chatting with the same people (completely unaware of the time), wasn’t uncommon. And you know, I think I could still play WoW and enjoy it if I really wanted to. But I knew it wasn’t my game and I was sure I’d move on sooner or later.
A year ago in February I simply just tried out the Eve Online trial, I heard some good stories about it a few months earlier, but I was thinking about leaving WoW at all and was still enjoying the game. But reading things like this and this got me excited enough to try it out with a trial. While playing the trial and reading some about Eve-O I started the ponder if it was a good idea to play both WoW and Eve-Online. I didn’t directly enjoy the trial all that much, missioning and mining didn’t seem ‘that’ much fun, but I enjoyed the complexity and possibilities. I also loved the amount of articles around the backstory of Eve, although I did dislike the main ideas behind the 4 Empires, which seemed so simple and cliché to me. A religious (almost Christian) Empire, a capitalistic state and a bureaucratic democracy. In 10k years we’d end up with factions like these? Yeah right, the only remotely original faction were the Minmattar and their rebellious roots. Ah well, I might write a blog-entry about this later.
I also directly tried to get into the RP side of things and tried to find out how that exactly worked out in this game. I made my character a True Amarrian, cause I thought I’d enjoy a not-so-nice religous zealot. A bit like my troll character in WoW. I also directly looked for a good RP’ish corporation, because I knew this was a MMO where you really need some people to play with to fully enjoy it. I also intended to join a mostly single-race corp, something that would fit my character. Aegis Militia, Vigiliant Vigeria (I always write it wrong), PIE, CVA.. It was quite hard to choose between them for a newbie like me back then. CVA sounded awesome, but was probably impossible to join for a newbie. So I went for PIE Inc, which I guess made the best impression on me as an outsider.
It still took some time until I really fell in love with Eve-O (even now I’m sometimes looking for reasons and motivation). I remember having some very good moments in my first 2-3 weeks. I remember joining some random other people in a mining operation, where I, with my simple frigate, got paid by the others to ‘protect’ them, while it actually was me that needed the protection. I also remember doing some ratting in both low-sec and high-sec together with someone else of the Imperial Academy (newbie corporation that everyone automaticly joins after creating a character). But mostly, I think it was slightly boring and I had hope it’d change after joining a good corporation (but those recruiters of PIE were busy for a long-long time), while there were some alright people out there in the chat-channel of the Imperial Academy, spam and whining mostly annoyed the hell out of me.
I also remember exploring the Providence in my 2nd or 3rd week, ending up at the Inflattable House, where suddenly more than hundred pilots gathered outside the station. Mostly CVA, even a few PIE. And gees, so many ships certainly was impressive for a WoW-player like me. They all aligned to a stargate and slowly moved in that direction for a few minutes before warping towards it. My computer lagged a little bit, but I followed the fleet for a while, until I was told to stop following or being shot down in Local. I felt slightly insulted that I, as fellow Amarrian, wasn’t allowed to help them, but I quickly obeyed. A day later I heard it was the beginning of a mayor campaign versus Ushra’Khan, where CVA took over a station (Karishals Defiance, which was renamed to Karishals Folly) of them.
To be continued…