I am an explorer, a story hound, and a roaming lowsec PVPer. What CCP did (or didn’t do) to those things, plus major RL time and cash restrictions, made me pull the plug. So why am I still here blogging?
The long story short is this: In a perfect world (or even one in which EVE was free and I had more hours in the day), I wouldn’t have left despite those issues.
I watched as much as I could of Alliance Tournament X, and loved it. Even though none of my teams (read: old alliance mates and lowsec/NPC-null PVP alliances) won out. I watched with pride as my alliance-mates in Sleeper Social Club took a couple good swings. I actually laughed out loud as many of my old corpmates now in Agony Empire put on an amazing show and clinics on both ECM and cap chains. I cheered for roboblogger Ripard Teg and Rote Kapelle, hoping for a great Agony/Rote clash late in the bracket.
I continue to be amazed at the vibrancy of the Eve community. I can’t get song parodies by David Magnus out of my head (my daughter just thinks I’m weird when she sings Carly Rae Jepsen and I join in the chorus singing “fight us, maybe” – I’m convinced she doesn’t know the right words). I continue to enjoy batting things around with the Tweetfleet. The blog banters are continually good reading, and finally got worked up enough to come out of retirement to answer the last one.
I read much of the magnum opus that is the CSM minutes. Let’s face it, folks – for any of you in business, especially the gaming business, you have to admit that CCP is an amazingly open company. The fact that they even have a CSM, much less pay for summits, is a huge testament to their commitment to listening to the player base. Dev presence has absolutely exploded on Twitter. You can bitch about various things (and of course I will on occasion), but credit where due. Especially folks like CCP Manifest, who I’m sure did not love my last two blog entries, still supported the push for a response on the Vagabond frill – and may have been a key part of getting a great response from the leadership of the art team, with a story-based reason, no less, and a commitment for a story-based fix.
As I’ve watched from the wings most of this year, I’ve seen a lot of good along with the concerning and irritating. I see things posted like “Lowsec isn’t so empty any more” – particularly from Faction Warfare folks (which, despite flaws is clearly vastly improved since I left). I see my alma mater Eve University braving nullsec camps and potentially reconstituting the Ivy League Navy as an actual force. I see my former alliance-mate wormholers quietly maintaining a solid hold on things and getting some fun combat in. I see the artwork and effects continue to add new layers of awesome (can’t wait to see the new missile effects in person – they looked so good in ATX!).
Finally, I have to give credit to CCP Unifex, despite the bashing I’ve been throwing at him here and on Twitter for :4devs: and having gone too far toward the hands-off approach, especially where story is concerned.
But … he’s right. In EVE, the players are the content.
For me, it’s that content – the players – that will bring me back. I miss the fleet ops. I miss the tension as you warp into a fight, or make a mad adrenaline-fueled dash for the edge of a bubble as you jump into a system. I miss the camaraderie, catcalls, applause, help and advice of my old fleetmates. I miss knowing that I’m simultaneously zipping around a huge “galaxy” in a fleet composed of a player each from Minnesota, California, Canada, Australia, England and a tired guy in Finland. I miss tangling with pirates and flopping back in my chair after a well-earned “gf gf”.
And of course, with today’s announcement that the EVE-Dust link is going live on SiSi, we may get a lot more content than we bargained for very soon.