Thursday, May 28, 2015

To PvP or Not to PvP... That is Not The Question…

~or “Players Engaging Players…”

Graphic shamelessly borrowed without permission from Rote Kapelle

This one stems from Lowsec Lifestyle the pulpit of the Right Honorable CSM Sugar Kyle… her post, Rambling: What May Be, prompted some interesting, and IMHO some very quotable, commentary on the definition of EVE…

Sugar Kyle
I think building things is just as much a part of the game as destroying them.
…I believe that Eve thrives on production and destruction.

Kaeda Maxwell
EVE is a ‘space ship game’ with the 'PvP always on' option ticked…

The phrase “eve is a PvP” game doesn't catch the real essence of the game. It isn't ‘versus’ every time.
…it’s a PeP or Players engaging Players game. Be it with guns or markets or hard working mineral collection.

Anon noob
Do I feel entitled? Yes, to play the game how I want to play it. To play without having interaction or interference from other’s, No.

As an avid EVE player and blogger I follow the goings on in the blogsphere and the metagame. I read hundreds of articles and posts and forum threads and comments which have kicked off replies, comments and many ideas for posts in my mind but occasionally it all kicks off something else... despair. As I read through the words of EVE pundits, savants and lay EVE players I sometimes reach a point of mental critical failure.

I sit back, sigh and realize once again that it is a trap. We are trapped forever in a diametrically opposed situation. All of EVE is RvB. The Griefer versus the Carebear, the PvPer verus the PvEer, those addicted to the adrenaline rush of destruction versus those addicted to the pursuit of ‘perfect’ min/max of creation…

“EVE is a PvP game!” “EVE is a Sandbox!!” “EVE is whatever I want it to be!!!” “You play EVE Wrong!” “No, YOU do!” The arguments fly back and forth as thick as the laser beams, bullets and missiles did in B-R, but unlike that epic battle… there is not, and never can be, a winning dog in this fight.

This gets frustrating for me at times… I try to get my point across, I try to add to the discourse and I get very excited about the game and I feel strongly about the stuff I feel strongly about ‘n all, but sometimes I just get all “Oh hell, why bother.” about it all.

But… at the same time I recognize that this is also the ‘key’ to EVE. The RvB like permanent war between the PvPbears and the PvEbears, diametrically opposed in their playstyles of both Creation and Destruction… Because human beings derive great satisfaction from both creative and destructive activities… and that duality is at the core of what EVE “IS”.

Take a good look at that pic at the top of this post… that is a very real human thing. The child building the sandcastle gets a feeling of satisfaction and fulfilled from the end product of her efforts… and the child bounding in to destroy all of that will receive a very real rush of adrenaline and excitement from his actions, both very very different feelings, but both are equally as fulfilling and satisfying for each of those kids.

Now there are those who will say the child who wants to destroy only desires to create pain and hurt (IE ‘tears’) in the creative child. While there are those who play from that motivation, I believe that is not the whole truth for all, nor do I believe it is true even for the majority of the playerbase... I know it is not the truth for me. For many like me it is the adrenaline rush of power and the “win”… and destruction is power and winning just quite simply feels good to human beings.

CCP set out 13 years ago to permanently pit these two diametrically opposed playstyles, Creation and Destruction, against each other… and in the doing they have to constantly balance these two forces with and against each other… their job is to keep the strain high yet even between them. That is real the magic of EVE.

This post derived from Chanina’s comments… It crystallized for me my feeling that EVE is actually not a ‘PvP’ game… it is also not a ‘PvE’ game…

EVE is a PEP game. Players Engaging Players in the never ending cycle of Creation and Destruction. With these powerful forces held in constant and careful balance by the amazing people at CCP.

Players Engaging Players

Helping each other in corps and Alliances and even in the metagame in Coalitions… PEP to mine more efficiently, to haul more efficiently, to run missions more efficiently, to explore more efficiently, to create more efficiently and to do all this and more with friends.

Working together in corps, Alliances and Coalitions in fleets to gank more efficiently, to fight more efficiently, to war more efficiently, to roam more efficiently, to destroy more efficiently, to hold space together… and to do all this and more with friends.

PEP of that 'other' kind, the 'in-your-face-kind', with DPS... in the asteroid belts, in the battlefields, at the sun, at the Jita 4-4 dock, in the market, in 10-v-1s and in honorable duels, in Hulkageddon and Burn Jita and in the anoms and sigs throughout New Eden and in deepest wormhole space…

PEP on TS, Mumble, Jabber, on the internet, in blogs by the hundreds, the E-zines and forums, on Reddit, Something Awful, TMC, EN24, Dev Blogs, the EVEO Forum and all the comment threads… and in EVE Meets around the globe… EVEsterdam, EVE New England, EVE Vegas, EVE Glasgow, EVE Down Under... and in Reykjavik, Iceland thousands of EVE Players Engage with Players from all over the world at Fanfest every year.

And yes, the solo players, the casual players, the Hermits of EVE... the over 50% of us... Yes they are as engaged in the game as the rest of us directly or indirectly through their actions... missions, mining , industry, buying, selling, exploration and solo PvP... They are engaged in their reactions to gankers and gate camps and wars and the ebb and flow of the players... They are engaged because we all, every single one of us, fly and live and die in the same space, in the same game, on the same server.

Oh yes, EVE is a PEP game… and it is the only one of its kind in the 'verse.  And I live there.  =]

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


  1. Awesome post and great point. You've sold me...I'm going to use that one.

    1. Thank you bro, I am honored... I mean it. I think highly of you and Rixx and Sugar et al... the Big Hitters in the EVE Blogsphere... so I am very pleased with the response these last few posts have received... very pleased indeed. =]

      This thought, unspoken and undefined has been rambling about in my head for like 2 years... it was when I read Chanina's comment it gelled... right then and there... EVE is a PeP game and CCP walks the tightest rope in MMO history...

      What an amazing game we play huh? =]

  2. Coining a succinct, accurate, practical term is no small thing. Perhaps it deserves naming?

    Chanina’s Vision: Eve is a Player-Engaging-Player (PeP) game

    1. Chanina said it first... she gets dibs. That's the way this shit works, just ask Bill Gates. =]

      The idea grabbed me and I then grabbed it and ran with it, added my own twist and 'take' on it... then Tal grabbed it and twisted it his way... But it is Chanina's idea in truth and in rights. So, no matter what others do or say, I will not lay claim to the idea nor will I say that it is a shared idea... it simply isn't.

      So, from now on it will be discussed here on my little backalley blog as:

      "Chanina’s Law" EVE Online is the worlds first true Players-engaging-Players (PeP) MMO(RP)G,

      'nough said.

  3. It's definitely a PEP game although there's a wild variety of different modes of engagement.

    A solo high sec missioner is part of an economic structure that sees his income from LPs go up and down as other players do certain things (eg cash out FW LP). He's some people's target and he must overcome that challenge. Eve is a political game and a game played on forums and at player meets.

    Two things emerge from Eve's encompassing single shard nature - we know all (non-Chinese server) Eve players as rivals and neighbours and we have much more pull into the community.

    I originally played Eve as my second MMO, something to chill in when I didn't feel like talking to anyone. Now I'm a nullsec FC and a blogger. It sucks you in.

    I don't think you could ever get quite the same sense of player history in a multi shard game.

  4. Excellent article and one that has been haunting since i started early last year. Thank you for taking the time to help codify this in the realm of Eve.

    1. Thanx Saint!!! and Welcome to teh Blogsphere man!!!!


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