"There's no real way around EVE's brutality"
November 18, 2016 9:20 AM   Subscribe

There's a fairly well-established pattern of events that surround MMOs transitioning to a free-to-play model. First, the existing players freak out and try desperately to convince the game studio not to do it. Then the articles about the death of that MMO begin appearing in the gaming press. Then the studio insists that "no, no, everything's fine." Then the layoffs and server shutdowns begin. So why is it that when EVE Online developer CCP announced that they were going F2P, it was met by near-universal enthusiasm from the player base? Well, EVE has always been a little different.

It has been three days since EVE Online opened the doors to the unwashed masses of free alpha clones and, by all accounts the game's health is better than it has been for years.

This summer saw a huge upheaval as The Imperium coalition, (née Goonswarm), the perpetual antagonists and self-styled evil villains of EVE's player-driven political universe, suffered their largest defeat ever in the campaign styled World War Bee. Since then, but for the banning (for reasons related to gambling and real money trading) of prominent people from among the instigators and victors of World War Bee, the starmap of New Eden had been relatively quiet and player numbers had been dwindling. In the last three days, that trend has taken an abrupt about face, and it's not even the weekend yet.

(Non-sequitur link to the "This is EVE" video just because it gives me goosebumps every time)
posted by 256 (22 comments total) 18 users marked this as a favorite
F2P in EVE just means newbs to shoot and scam and risk free T1 fit Ritter roams.
posted by nathan_teske at 9:24 AM on November 18, 2016 [1 favorite]

I miss you guys and gals. Also, can confirm that joining mefites in ventures (both the literal mining ship and actual, ya'know, business or exploration adventures spanning multiple months in some cases) and fleets (PVP and PVE and all things in between) has been a highlight of my gaming career and is an essential part of any EVE experience in my humble opinion.

I'll also say that, if there is anyone, who is quick to poo-poo on F2P games, while I completely agree for the most part, I don't think this is going to have a detrimental impact on folks who want to play EVE (free or not) in the short to medium term. It's a gateway drug, but the best kind.

I haven't played in years but I miss y'all.

Fly fun,
RoE (former PINTO CEO, ret.)
posted by RolandOfEld at 9:29 AM on November 18, 2016 [6 favorites]

This could pull me back in -- $15/month for a game that I didn't have time to be more than the most casual of casuals in wasn't a good use of cash.

FtP means I can hop in and out at my leisure and if, say, a year from now, I end up down the rabbit hole to the point that an Alpha Clone won't let me do what I want, the subscription fee will be a good use of money for time spent.
posted by sparklemotion at 9:57 AM on November 18, 2016

F2P in EVE just means newbs to shoot and scam and risk free T1 fit Ritter roams.

Well, if there's one thing I love, it's T1 fit Ritter roams. And risk free too, you say? Dayum!
posted by Naberius at 9:58 AM on November 18, 2016 [1 favorite]

Speaking of T1 Rifter roams, a handful of us Mefites recently went on one and it was a great success.

We have a Metafilter corp in-game called "Plate of Beans, Incorporated" that's currently experiencing a resurgence of activity and any Mefites who want to try out EVE as an alpha clone are welcome to come fly with us. You can join the corp or not, we also have a private in-game chat channel so that all mefites can hang out and play together regardless of what corp they're in.

Come check out our threads at MeFightClub and/or send a message to me (Machagon) in-game.
posted by 256 at 10:09 AM on November 18, 2016 [4 favorites]

I still don't really understand Eve and have no desire to play it, but for some reason I really love reading mefi threads about it and seeing what mefites who do play have to say about it.
posted by rtha at 10:15 AM on November 18, 2016 [19 favorites]

I too love reading Eve threads and stories and have no desire to pick up that crack pipe because crack is whack.
posted by drewbage1847 at 10:28 AM on November 18, 2016 [7 favorites]

I returned to my account after a long time. My main has so many great ships that she cannot use anymore. Then I realized that I have no clue how to play this game anymore. Hundreds of millions of ISK. Stealth ships, interdictors... Not a clue what to do.

It does look gorgeous, though. Really beautiful.
posted by Splunge at 10:29 AM on November 18, 2016 [2 favorites]

We'll teach you what to do! Small-gang PVP is straightforward.
posted by bitterpants at 10:44 AM on November 18, 2016 [1 favorite]

the unwashed masses of free alpha clones

as opposed to the unwashed masses of omega clones
posted by ryanrs at 10:54 AM on November 18, 2016 [1 favorite]

Not a clue what to do

EVE University might be helpful. It's a player-run volunteer institution which offers classes which are open to anyone. (Class schedule, recorded classes) , and perhaps more importantly administers a comprehensive wiki which includes guides on what might be fun to do and how to do it. Anyone can join the university if they want one-on-one mentorship (or if they want to join medium-sized fleets and go hunting). It's about the closest EVE gets to lawful-good.

Mentioned on behalf of...a friend.
posted by justsomebodythatyouusedtoknow at 11:01 AM on November 18, 2016 [4 favorites]

EVE University used to have too many rules. I hear they are better these days, but if you find their rules and processes to be oppressive and unfun, please realize that every other newbie-focused group in EVE is much more laid back.
posted by ryanrs at 11:08 AM on November 18, 2016

EVE, like Dwarf Fortress, is far more fun to read about than to play.
posted by Pope Guilty at 12:11 PM on November 18, 2016 [5 favorites]

Can someone give me a potted update of where the goons have been driven to? Technically I'm an Eve goon myself, but I could never bring myself play long enough to even get to the staging area :(
posted by Sebmojo at 12:19 PM on November 18, 2016

You know, you can subscribe to the game, pay every month, and just never log in. Seriously, lots of people do that. It's sort of the EVE end-game.

I have six accounts running, one of them double-paid (for more skill training), and I probably play 10 hours a month, max. (It's all paid with space money, I'm not actually shelling out $100/mo in real money).
posted by ryanrs at 12:19 PM on November 18, 2016

Damn it 256 how dare you try to suck me back in to Plate Of Beans Inc...
posted by MillMan at 1:02 PM on November 18, 2016 [1 favorite]

(If the idea of something EVE-ish without PvP appeals to anybody, check out Ascent: The Space Game. It's a 100% indie effort, with just one programmer and occasionally an artist, but it's pretty good. Buy-to-play, optional $1-3/mo subscription for access to certain "endgame" features.)
posted by tobascodagama at 1:05 PM on November 18, 2016

Seconding Ascent. Pretty cool game.
posted by Splunge at 4:48 PM on November 18, 2016

Sebmojo, the Goons have settled in the southwest, having traded Fortress Deklein for Fortress Delve. Their coalition was smashed by World War Bee, but GoonSwarm Alliance itself remained mostly intact. Lately they've been pestering the residents of Fountain, and half-heartedly encroaching on Querious (residents of which quickly decamped when Goons showed up on their doorstep). What's more, their old allies RedAlliance have taken up residence in Period Basis, but there's no word of a renewed RedSwarm. For the moment Goons have receded from the political spotlight, while all eyes remain fixed on the north.
posted by The Nutmeg of Consolation at 5:55 PM on November 18, 2016 [2 favorites]

I just hope we get a second volume of Empires of EVE someday.
posted by Molesome at 10:14 AM on November 20, 2016 [2 favorites]

Oh lookee here, and here's me just side-graded (like an upgrade, but with a second hand laptop) to a machine that'll run Eve. Damn.

I'll look up the Mefi crew in newbie-space and see how I go.
posted by Happy Dave at 12:02 AM on November 21, 2016 [2 favorites]

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