Tuesday, December 7, 2021

Day Four and Counting...

~or “The Liveaboard Lifestyle”

Breakfast, day two

So with the advent of the Star Citizen Alpha 3.15 “Deadly Consequences” patch I began an experiment that I have wanted to do since I first logged into the 'verse... To live full time onboard a spaceship. This has been a dream of mine for over 11 years now.

In EVE Online we lived in our ships... hell, as we were basically a component, a “module”, plugged into our ships we really had no other choice but to live aboard. Except it wasn't “me” and it really wasn't “living”.

You see in EVE our bodies are packed away into capsules... armored buttplug shaped single person escape pods (with warp drives no less!). Inside these “pods” our bodies are pressurized inside and out with life sustaining “pod goo” with electrical umbilicals plugged into ports all over our bodies connecting our nervous systems directly to the ships systems.

This is the basis for the idea that just one person can fly and fight every ship in EVE from the lowliest noob ship to a Titan. Really? Titans are capitol ships up to 18 KILOMETERS long... I mean, seriously, an Eighteen Kilometer Long Single Seat Fighter?

When we are docked instation in EVE we can have the “pod” removed from whatever ship we were in and then actually exit the pod ourselves. You would be “decanted” to the floor in a pool of pod goo... hacking and coughing and needing a towel and some clothes (yes, that is how the Lore graphics made it look). But then we would have been able to be our actual selves in our actual bodies actually in the world.

First Person Experience in EVE...    (yuck)

With this idea of creating new FPS Gameplay for EVE back in 2011, with the attendant whole new FPS playerbase and the new income and the new content and the well, you know the GROWING-the-godsdamned-game-is-good-for-BUSINESS-thing, CCP had been working on WIS (Walking In Stations) which could have let us get OUT of the damned “pods” and play the game on foot, on the ground, in stations and maybe even inside our ships!!

But CCP dropped that ball like a radioactive potato when the playerbase lost its collective mind over WIS, the Incarna character creator and Micro-transactions and a huge number of players thew a Vehemently Anti-WIS “Space ships ONLY!” tantrum, IE the Jita Riots of YC113.

So CCP backed away from WIS and that was that... I'd never ever be able to walk around inside the Caldari Navy Assembly Plant, better known as “Jita 4-4”, the greatest trade hub in New Eden... or walk the concourse in the Emperor’s Family Station in Amarr Prime where I stored my shadow fleet while I lived and died in my beloved home, Anoikis.

And so for 10 years I “lived” in my ships and I was as content as I could be given the limitations in EVE. But no more! With the new features of Physicalized Inventory, Loot Generation & Server Crash Recovery (scroll to Core Tech), Medical Gameplay and Regeneration brought to the PTU & PU through Alpha 3.15(.1) now I can!

The Experiment.

I just bought one of the new Entry Level Medium Cargo Haulers showcased at the recent 2951 IAE, the Argo Astronautics RAFT (Reinforced Advanced Freight Transport).

My Argo RAFT, SV “Kon-Tiki” on Wala loading up 96 SCU of Laranite

I am SO smitten! I LOVE this ship! First off I love the ARGO “HTFU” Industrial aesthetic, very similar to Drake, my other fav ship maker.

Second, this is a dedicated medium cargo transport designed for long range deployments with 2 crew and it has all the necessary “liveaboard” amenities... Bunks, nice galley, wet head and ample Locker storage (1.5 SCU) for provisions such as food, clothing, armor, guns, ammo and medical supplies. She also carries 3 external 32 SCU containers to give her 96 SCU total capacity. She is lightly armed with just 2 S3's in a remote turret and 2 S1's for the pilot, but she comes with a very tough hull, tougher shields and a comprehensive countermeasures suite.

After I bought “Kon-Tiki” I immediately provisioned her with water bottles, cola, beer and a variety of sandwiches, fruit, snack bars, candy, etc. I bought Med-pens, Med-guns and refills, a spare undersuit, a spare set of armor, a selection of firearms and ammo and 2 Multitools with attachments and a selection of clothing for all occasions.

Then I started doing some trading. Mainly quick one-way Agricium or Laranite runs, with Titanium to fill in the corners, from moons to the planet hubs. I haven't been doing any 2 way hauling as Scrap is still not a viable commodity.

Even so I have still been banking roughly ~130k cr per day (login to logoff) without really working too hard for it. So financially it has been quite decent so far but... the real thing is, I have been able to live full time on my ship for the last 4 days and nights.

See those bottles? been there 2 days, full backpack still there from last night

THIS was AMAZING... for the last 3 days I pulled and re-racked as needed
I wear whatever I feel like, sloppy clothes aboard, business casual or a uniform if I'm gonna be in atmo or in public, undersuit and armor if airless... I go armed when needed, unarmed when warranted. The FEEL of it all is absolutely amazing.

I now usually wear pants and a T-shirt or something comfortable while shipside. I change into whatever is appropriate to my destination, land, do my business, take off and change back to comfy clothes for the flight. GODS how GOOD this feels!! It feels REAL.

Feels good to be out of my armor... time to make the run to a market hub

After I finish for the day, I warp out somewhere far far away from the madding crowds (is 50 players a crowd? have you met us?)... then I MANUALLY drop out of warp deep in the black or maybe somewhere out in the Belt. I go on the float, power down my engines, go aft to the hab, change into sweats and a ratty but comfy old sweater and make some dinner (while “I” do the same IRL).

Then I chill out watching ancient vids from old Earth... SxyBisuit, BoredGamer, Citizen Kate or Cobra TV until I decide to turn in then I undress and simply go to bed... (as “I” do the same IRL).

Looks like the pantry is getting low again...

For the last 4 days I have spent my time in Stanton running cargo, banking cred, shopping for supplies and living full time aboard my ship... and in general, I have been as happy as I believe I can be in a virtuality.

When 30Ks happen (they have been few thank Bob) Crash Recovery has been working great. I either log right back into my ship in space where the crash happened or, at worst I find myself planetside and simply pull the ship back out finding that everything, cargo and supplies, are all in perfect order so I just get back to work.

Has it been glitch and bug free? Nope. Last night I lost the ship and everything in her. I had had another profitable day, It was late and I was on the float eating dinner... Bacon Club sandwich, apple, chocolate bar and a water. After I was done, I went to get up from the table to throw away the empty bottle... but, the game decided to exit the booth to my left. To my right was the interior of my ship, to my left was... the rear window.

Yup... to my left is the window I fell out of...   sigh>

I glitched through the window and out into space... found myself gently spinning, gasping, freezing and dying in sweats and a ratty sweater while holding that empty water bottle.

So is it perfect yet? OH Hell no! It is still very much in Alpha and still definitely a Work In Progress but... AMAZING PROGRESS!!!

Even in “Alpha” Star Citizen is still THE MOST deeply detailed, MOST deeply immersive and simply THE MOST FUN MMOG that I have ever experienced in my entire life.

Please be Neat, Wipe the Seat! and don't forget to Flush!

 Fly it like you actually LIVE in it!