Monday, December 29, 2014

EVE is… Fun. =]

~or “Viam EVE…”

What is EVE? I don’t know how many times I’ve been asked that simple three word question… and it always left me standing there, waiting for the flies to just land in my open mouth… I never had a good short, to the point answer. Because EVE is not simple, short or to the point... whateverthehell it is.

It’s a game, right? Oh it’s a game alright… and it’s an MMO and an MMORPG too for some… it’s a persistent virtual world and a personal virtual life… it’s a gankers paradise and the haunt of risk adverse OCD miners and Industry spreadsheet geeks and Market mavens… It’s an experience that simply MUST be shared with friends and thousands more and a Hermit’s dream, it’s a single shard universe, and a lonely desolate wormhole system… it’s a Harsh Mistress and a Gentle Beauty… an exotic sheer bikini clad Lover, and a triple 1600mm Tritanium plated Bitch.

It is all this and so much more… but it is NOT easy nor is it simple… to play, to live in, to fly in and to die in, to define or to explain.

But, over the last few weeks, I have found my personal short-simple-to-the-point answer…
EVE is Fun… and as far as I am concerned, if it’s not fun for you… yer doing it wrong.

You see defining and or explaining EVE for many stems from a desire for our friends and family to understand this our collective hobby. We who enjoy it get so much out of it… partly because EVE IS horrendously complex and hard to learn. It is hard to explain a ‘game’ that can be so very extremely harsh and unforgiving. Those of us who love it do so BECAUSE it is ALL of the above… and one other thing… we have FUN doing all of it, even the boring, painful, shitty stuff.

This thought has been gelling in me since I read Wilhelm Arcturus’s post, This is EVE and EVE is Different over on The Ancient Gaming Noob. I don’t really follow TAGN ‘closely’ because he is a nullsec player and I could not care less about nullsuc, and his blog also covers a lot of WoW and such and so I have to pick and choose what to read over there… Please understand I’m not dissin’ his blog or playstyle, I’m just picky and I don’t play WoW so a lot of it means Na-da to me is all. But he is also an EVE player and very often has insights and a depth to our game that I would sorely hate to miss… so I do keep up with him.

Anyhoo… in this post which was his BB#61 - Origin State, post… he says a few things that really hit home with me… 

“EVE Online will not meet your expectations.

That isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but you’re going to come charging in with some ideas in mind and EVE just isn’t going to line up with them."


“If you look at blogs from people playing EVE Online… …things can be quite different.  Sure, some days we are all talking about the same thing, like the latest expansion.  But there are times when we clearly aren’t just playing in different areas of the game, but it seems like we might be playing totally different games.

In no other MMO I know of or have heard of is this more true. … it seems like we might be playing totally different games…  because… we are and yet, we are all still playing EVE. This is the Dichotomy and the Duality, the Yin and Yang, the Male and Female, the Creation and Destruction that is EVE and that is a huge part of the human experience.

When all is said and done, I enjoy my time in EVE more than any other hobby I have ever had. I fly in EVE with my sons… we have a corp that is our own. We are currently flying with friends we have had for almost 4 years… and some we just met last week. I have my bad days… and sometimes I am the bad day others’ have… but everyday, bad to best, I look forward to it more, and have more sheer fun doing it, on par with anything else I have ever had as a hobby. Seeing the guys on TS, and in the POS… Endy, and ‘nipples’… Sov and his “About your fit…”, Tsra and his “Damn, I’m outta arsenic…”, AI and his ”….” (he’s kinda quiet…), Strigon and his “I just push F1…”… and all the other guys…

Over the last few weeks I have had wonderful wins! And amazing losses… we have run sites like Real Pros and we have run sites like we were drunken retards… we have had GFs and terribad fights, but always post ‘GF’ in local as we warp off… I have made a mountain of ISK… and spent damn near all of it… and I have had an absolute blast during all of it… Yea, EVE is a lot of things… but first and foremost it HAS to be…

All For the Fun…

When all is said and done,
the war over,
the battle lost or won,
when your ship has gone nova,
you understand then…

When you turn ponderously for home,
your Hulks laden with ore,
like a citizen of old Rome,
sweat and blood for the corp,
you understand then…

When the smoke clears,
and you’re back in the hole,
you see your greatest fears,
are not loss of control,
you understand then…

When you were scared and shaking,
webbed and pointed as you tried to run,
when you realized YOU weren’t breaking,
you understand now…

...that it is all for the fun.

Fly Reckless and see you in the Sky  =/|)=

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

A Really REALLY Great Bad Idea…

~or “And a Spanking Ensued…”

Last night was about as good as EVE gets for me.  =]

OK, first off the last 2 weeks or so have been dull… deadly, gods damned dull. I have logged on most ervy day as usual, I have done PI, or not… and when in the mood scanned all-the-things, or not… and usually no one on but me. Oh occasionally we’d have a guy or two on TS… mebbe playing Warframe or some such… and a few times had some of our newer members on, but in Empire boofing around. I did get into a few nice TS sessions where I got to put on the Sensei robes and teach, or at least knowledgeably answer questions. I prefer to try to not just share info but to also encourage and share some of the wonder and love I have for our game.

Something personally fun, day afore yesterday I found my first Shattered Planet hole connecting to ours, N-Space or S-Space or whatevertehfuk it’s called… one of the New 101 (Anoikis like) systems… At first I was all WTF? While scanning and scouting I was also in Sensei mode teach PI… so after jumping in, BMing the return hole and spamming Dscan, I tried to do a quick scan of a planet to answer a current PI question and I was all ‘why in the hells can’t I look at a planet??’ Then I saw ‘no moons’… Hrm, lots of Sleeper Sites… no FF (Force Fields) which means no POSes… OH Hey!! I’m inna Shattered Planet Hole!!! Schweet!

Warped to see my first real shattered planet and…   it wasn’t. It was a nice clean round planet… with a huge amount of (untargetable) asteroids(?) in close orbit (IE at ‘0’ on the planet)… Well, disappointing to say the least. Also these new systems are not available to our mapping tool… huh.

But the point is I was on pretty much solo when I was for the last 2ish weeks… I did PI, scanned… and usually logged after a bit… EVE has become, for me, more a social game as I get older. Oh I still am ‘ok’ with being on solo, just vastly prefer company is all. Anyhoo, so last night there was a stirring on TS and corpmates were loggin on… some were playing Warframe but we all decided to actually try and run sites together.

Earlier in the day I had soloed 3 sites in my Vargur… scary as I had no backup if jumped, but it is Anoikis… and some days the scary for others is me so I just kept spammin Dscan and nom nommed the sites for 180m ISK… nice. Then people started loggin on and… we suddenly had hostiles in the hole. We made a stab at killing a ‘Stero that was running a data site… and missed. In the end there was enough neut/hostile activity to make us feel sites were not on safely the agenda for the evening… <sigh>…

Then Sov, out scanning and scouting as usual says… “Hey guys…” “I have an idea… a really, really BAD idea.” “I’m sure it is just a terrible idea…” and you can just hear him grinning… OH HELLS YES!!! Both Endy and I were all like “Cool, say no more, say no more…” and “What ship should I be in?” and “What? Where? How? Can we keel it? them?” Seems in the C2/Hi right next door we have a POS… defended by 6 Cruise Missile Batteries and… nothing else. Nothing? Nothing, no other defenses at all, huh, really? And an Orca, Itty, ‘Stero, Probe are just floating inside… and while the Orca is manned, it seems to be AFK.

Hmm. We discuss the potential DPS and such of 6 BS sized Cruise Missiles inna hole and decide to try it. First off Sov has me get a Med T2 bubble for the Hisec hole in the C2… At the hole, I align to the target POS and anchor it as close to the hole as bubble mechanics will allow… and the hole is nicely covered. So we have a cloaky scout, x2 DPS Ishtars and me inna Scimmy for logi. We jump in warp to and land, I start reps and the guys start in on the CM Batteries… and the CM Batteries start in on us… and… huh, nothing. I mean the barest, faintest scratch of red appears in shield, then gone to reps… after a minute Sov says, “Tur, drop reps.” So I do… that bare, faint scratch of red becomes a slightly more bold, faint scratch of red… and that’s it.

I reship to a Prophesy and we go to work on taking down the missile batteries and even though I get focus fire a few times, I never go deeper than 50% shields, and I’m armor fit… needless to say, the CM Batteries are incapped in relatively short order. With the meager LOLable defenses down, we go to work on the POS itself because Sov is of a mind that this thing (1) may have been just setup and (2) may have been setup by guys who just possibly may not have stronted it… we decide to shewtz it enough to see if it goes into reinforced and in the meantime see if we can get some kills or a fight outta these guys.

We continue ops… and the Probe suddenly warps out directly to the hisec hole, which is not in dscan range of the POS BTW… and he get caught in the bubble and Sov deals with it, killed and podded out. We continue ops. A few more guys join us over the course. After a while a Tengu logs in, lands in the POS… boofs around a bit and eventually warps off directly to the Hisec and like the Probe, gets trapped in the bubble, killed and podded out.

Now Sov calls for a bubble on the POS, I go get another Med T2 and drop in in line with the hisec hole and just behind our guys, the edge of the bubble was like 20km off the POS. Ok so the guy in the Orca wakes up and jumps into a Gnosis and eventually tries to escape with what could potentially be a neat trick. He warps off in the direction of the hisec hole and we follow… he lands 100km high from the bubble, drops a Mobile Warp Unit and starts anchoring…

Hmmm… we wonder if this will work, can the MWU warp him into the bubble deep enough to jump before we kill him? Or will he get stopped at the edge as any ship in warp does? Sov sends Endy to burn hard and sic his droans on it and kill the MWU before it can be activated… done and the Gnosis warps off… and gets trapped in the bubble back at the POS… we get tackle, those of us on the hole warp back and… he is killed and podded out.

The op continues and we finally hit reinforced. OK, so they did have stront and enough to give it a one day plus 17 hour timer… Now we are deciding whether or not to make it an actual op, not just a ToO (Target of Opportunity) and stay for the timer to see if (1) we get a fight and (b) if we take down the POS, what might drop… So we're going back n forth on this when...

Sov finally gets into a convo with these guys… seems they are Lithuanian… and no one present speaks Engrish. So Sov is doing a Google Translate convo in Lithuanian to poor English to incomprehensible Lithuanian… (gentle reader just imagine the hilarity…). To make a longish and LOL filled story short… we end up offering a 1.5b ISK ransom… and they accept… and they pay. OMG!!  And it is at this point that Endy says… “Now I feel dirty.” LOL!

So once we have the ISK, I start taking down the bubbles and we group up on our home hole and when Sov says we're good, we jump back, warp to the POS and start winding down. A little bit later we are all sitting around laughing and discussing the op when Endy calls out, “Astero on scan.” Sov replies that it’s one of the guys from the corp we just spanked… He gets the guy in TS and is talking him through what went wrong and why and how to avoid it in the future, and he invited them to come see our POS setup, all deathstarry n all (inna cloaky) and is sharing with them the Tao of Holes… this is how we roll.

So, why did we attack them? Well, one answer would be the EVE standard… “They was home.” The other would be, and is, because they needed it, and better us than some other group who would not have respected the ransom and who would not have stayed and helped them learn how to make their way, find their fortune and live and die in Anoikis.

My beloved Anoikis is a place of very high risk and equally high reward, a place of imminent danger where sometimes I have a really bad day… and sometimes… I am the really bad day that others have… =]

Fly Safe and see you in the Sky  =/|)=