Friday, May 07, 2010
The biggest EVE review ever!
Also the one with the most authors. My EVE posts have provoked such a huge number of responses of EVE players, that it would be a shame to leave all that information rotting in the comment section. Therefore I have compiled it into a "review" of EVE, consisting of excerpts from the hundreds of comments EVE players left on my blog. Unsorted, but in chronological order. I'm not giving out a review score, recommendation, or any other judgement, I let you judge EVE for yourself from what the players say about it.
Don't spend any significant amount of time mining as a new player. It's not fun, and it's not profitable until you have the skills and the capital to buy and fly a good mining ship.
I seriously discourage you from mining, especially at the start. It is incredibly boring, and not even very profitable especially given your interest in the economic game. Many people like it because it is relatively safe, requires absolutely zero thought, and is a very slow but steady income stream. But it is by far the worst means of making ISK due to the sheer boredom factor.
Combat may seem boring initially, but that's because you're in a rookie ship without many modules.
But be warned, PvP in EvE often consists of hours of slow or idle activity followed by a short burts of furious combat.
EVE's learning skills are the poorest design decision in the game - and, of course, one which is vehemently defended against any criticism by people who think it adds "depth" to the game. Basically, the "correct" course of action for a new player is to skill up learning skills before any actual skills that let you DO anything. The result being, either you're completely ineffectual and unable to do anything or enjoy yourself for the first month of your subscription; or, you're consciously gimping your progression by skipping the learning skills and actually learning how to fly ships and use weapons.
I think now is an appropriate time to link to the infamous EVE learning curve cartoon: http://www.eve-pirate.com/uploads/LearningCurve.jpg
First commandment of EVE - never fly what you cannot afford to lose.
Don't trust or believe anyone (especially in the Jita system).
Don't fleet with anyone you don't know.
Don't take anything labelled 'free'.
I agree that PLEX are a problem though. I think in theory players are intended to spend time earning money while their skills level up. Particularly for those interested in the economic aspect of the game, it's far more efficient for a newbie to sell PLEX than to play the game as intended.
The system in eve for advancement plus Plex and the near requirement for players to also have a second (or third account) is clearly designed by CCP to increase profits.
EVE had to come up with a skill system that leaves players freedom to do what they want. They achieved this. But they also achieved that players sometimes stay subscribed just to train their skills. You can also never catch up the time you did not stay subscribed just to train skills, not even if you are playing a lot. That is the drawback of the system.
EVE will totally let you flounder if you don't set yourself some goals.
Lots of people also advise against training learning skills. I don't understand why you would start a game based upon skills and not take skills seriously. If you have no patience, do a FPS. Otherwise, buy a plex and train skills for 2-5 weeks and then "start" EVE.
Mining is unfortunately a necessary evil of EvE, in much the same way that having a job is a necessary evil in real life (unless you enjoy your job of course). Mining as part of an occasional group is far better (and more efficient) than doing it solo because you had your last ship popped by npc's.
Unlike other MMO's, the Eve Online universe is huge. Chances are you won't see other players as a noob except for the few seconds docking or undocking.
Remember your "forced grouping" post? I am definitely old enough to not like forced grouping. One of the good and worst things of EVE is that it is a dark, cruel place with fraud allowed. A very real downside is that joining a corp is not without risk. Someone can join a corp just so they are now allowed to destroy your 700m ISK (US$50) freighter without repercussions. People stealing from corps is quite common. A 2,000 person alliance can be impressive. But forced grouping in EVE has far more downsides than other MMOs.
The overview is just amazing. In both good and bad ways. Its hugely powerful and customizable. Its close to impenetrable too.
Eve isn't very newbie friendly at all. Though, it's gotten somewhat better since the first time I tried it.
Well, first of all EVE isn't a game that is "friendly to everyone" :), and it pretty much is never going to be given CCP's track record.
In fact, you should pretty much accept the idea that the tutorials are not going to give you anything other than an extremely basic idea of how to do things, if even that.
eve isnt a solo game it just isnt. and the advanced eve where everyone that loves the game ends up and newbies dont see right away, isnt handed to you on a silver platter it comes from experience and listening to others.
I think in practice Eve isn't a sandbox for a new player. Most people are told join a corp, run missions and that's what they do. People talk about other newbie professions but most of them really aren't. If you go pirate with a new character you are a free kill to older players. Ninja salvaging involves one of the most difficult skillsets to get the hang of. Hauling NPC goods is no longer an economically viable profession. Zero, zero space is out of bounds for newbies. There's trading which is just spreadsheeting and mining which isn't really a game since the only reason to do it is to progress in Eve while concentrating on something else. (I sometimes mine in Eve on one PC while playing AoC on the other). So where is this sandbox of infinite possibilities? Join corp, run missions.
However...i agree with you that mining is boring as hell...
Nobody really cares how much ISK you have atm. The important question is: How fast can you replace the ISK you just lost. And again nobody cares if you replace them by scamming, missioning, begging or selling PLEX, thats totally up to you.
To some players the high end politics and PvP of EVE is the 'hight of freedom and power' but to me it always seemed very hollow. It felt too 'sandboxy' in the 'little kids playing stupid games in a sandbox' kind of way. I saw nothing creative in that aspect of the game and it seemed the design of the game wanted to force me toward that path by making any part of the game that was enjoyable to me either hit a brick wall or become incredibly boring.
The days it takes to become proficient enough in one area to accomplish things alone or with your corp is, relatively, about 2 seconds in MMO time.
Anyways, one thing I wanted to mention. Ive heard a few people groaning about how even though its supposed to be sandbox, whenever someone asks what they should do its "run missions, join a corp". This is for very simple and logical reasons. If someone is at the point still (as a new player) where they don't have any idea what they want to do, or even what they can do; then the best thing they can do is run missions. This has the twofold effect of teaching them while segwaying nicely from other MMOs, and giving them a taste of different aspects of gameplay. Likewise, joining a corp is the biggest step you take in EvE as it is the key to accomplishing greater things. Ever heard the phrase greater than the sum of its parts? Thats an EvE corp. Simply put, a corp allows you to experience gameplay you never could alone. In a dangerous world like EvE, you need strength in numbers. You will find that the most boring activities (mining for example) can become much more profitable and fun with a corp. Running a 10 person mining session not only multiplies your haul (pooling resources like ships, skills, and cargo space is essential) but is usually pretty entertaining. I remember times we'd lay claim to an asteroid belt and start our op. Then punk kids started infecting the system. We had our big ships either leave the system or go stealth, and left the small miners alone, so when the griefer showed up he had his shiny new ship blasted away. Its times like this, where a completely unexpected and unscripted moment makes you feel like you are really in this world, that I love EvE.
As reviewers have said over and over, Eve isn't for everyone, and I personally am glad it's not for everyone. Twitchy, button mashing, strobe-lit, attention deprived children need not apply. When you stand to lose a couple weeks of in-game mission farming to replace a lost ship, you tend not to go off half-cocked.
Have you been to Jita yet (busiest trade system in EVE). If you haven't I recommend creating a Caldari Alt and just flying there for a quick view of the seedier side of EVE. Every second offer in in local chat is an outright scam.
Oh, and taking hours to form up a gang, move into enemy territory just to find them holed up in a NPC station, waiting for action, and then going home. Not fun.
As silly as that sounds outside of EVE, it is quite common in EVE for people to take a security hit and lose a ship just to cause pain and suffering to another player. Someone with the EVE mindset but unfamiliar with you might ask themselves the question. Anonymous, unaccountable internet actions do not bring out the best in people, as you saw with your comment experiments. The downside of EVE's dark and complicated sandbox is that it brings out the worst of the worst. It is certainly one of the reasons EVE will be a niche not mainstream game.
What???? You got bored after mining for only four hours??? Go back to WoW you whining noob;) To be honest you lasted longer that I did. I gave up on mining after five minutes. However it has to be admitted that there are a lot of boring things you can do in EVE. Even pvp involves a lot of waiting around between bursts of action.
I got as far as the mining barge the last time I tried EVE but it was the realization of how much I could earn from selling the timecards weighed against the tedium of mining which killed that activity off for me. Trading went the same way for the same reason.
Remember; however boring ore mining may be, it's still more engaging than ice harvesting... (Tragically, I do a lot of both).
Mining does indeed become quite profitable using the more specialist ships and mining lasers. Really, mining as an activity in-game is really the domain of the multi-boxer... myself I had two pilots in hulks and a third in a hauler or an Orca (giving mining bonuses).
Eve's "Ponys" where called Zephyrs. They where a gift for chirstmas. I guess you know what happend, after some people undocked with them :(
I don't particularly like the skill system although I am a fan of EVE. To me the skill system is an artificial constraint on what you can and can't do in the game. Such a constraint goes against the idea of a sandbox game.
As a long time Eve player it doesn't feel weird...anymore. I am sitting on top of 4 accounts now, 2 of them are logged on daily, 1 about once a week and the last one just to change skills, since the alt on this one is just training strictly towards flying a supercarrier. It just opens up more options, since you have to specialise your alts to get really good in their fields of activity. My biggest problem when i got my second account was, that i didn't want to pay for two subscriptions, but i also changed my mind on that. Paying for four accounts is still cheaper than my other past time activities, so i got over it. Sometimes i pay with ISK, but most of the times i keep my ISK invested and pay with real money.
Why it would be weird if a online game would be played mostly offline and with no actual playing? I don't see any weirdness in that.
I also realise that people keeping up subs in order to skill up on accounts that are not actively being played is probably an essential revenue stream for CCP.
CCP has happened across a method of allowing strongly embedded players to invest further in their game of choice without causing widespread festering resentment amongst the player-base. That's awesome. Disclaimer: I control four EVE accounts. They're all as active as one mouse, three very large screens, and human frailty permits them to be.
The second account is being played like an apprentice. Doing all the dirty work, hauling industrial materials about, while studying up to do what the character REALLY wants to do: pilot a mining ship of their very own. And not just ANY mining ship. A HULK!
I think the big difference in how strange this seems is less the passive vs. active leveling system and more that in Eve you can only advance one character per account, which encourages second and third accounts. If you were playing your main and your alt was happily training away silently on the same account, nobody would think it odd at all. It's the paying for the second account to do so that makes it seem odd.
Honestly, one of the things that turned me off of Eve was the passive nature of it. No matter what I did I couldn't progress my character faster than the skill queue. I could, in fact, go out and make more money and better my situation but I couldn't progress "myself." It quickly became obvious to me that I was better off not playing than playing. When I got enough skills to "do what I want to do" I could then log in and enjoy that for a bit. Getting my first battleship was awesome and I really enjoyed running missions with it for a while but I quickly hit a stopping point again where it became time to just "wait it out." I think the paragraph makes perfect sense if you're willing to put up with the passive nature of the game.
There are capacity constraints in EVE. You may see a login queue. There can also be gate delays as you jump from one shard to another. And one hour of scheduled daily downtime, which is why you see the phrase "working 23/7" in posts.
The UI could really use a complete overhaul. Nested dropdown menus punish user errors quite severely (a lesson that Microsoft learnt painfully with pre-Vista Start Menus), and the lack of multithreading makes the UI feel very sluggish at times.
In Eve, you can spend an entire play session coordinating with your alliance to camp a particular gate, finally getting there, and over the next couple of hours shooting a couple of ships that have the bad luck to pick that route. Maybe if you're lucky a real battle will develop. And if you're even more lucky, you'll survive more than 10 minutes of that battle. The P:W (playing:waiting) ratio in Eve is far, far too low for a mainstream game.
anyone can probe you out and find you while you do your missions, this is how ninja salvagers make their living and how pirates shoot down people in low sec while doing missions.
If you plan on getting seriously in to missions then sadly you need to do a bit of forward planning. I wasted quite a while building up faction with a group who had no decent level 4 agents. Ideally you want a faction that has a level 4 combat focussed agent in an easy to get to 0.5 region of space. http://www.eve-agents.com/ is a good reference. Yet another spreadsheet to play with!
The only reason missions are boring is because you have to grind the same missions over and over again to build up faction in order to advance to the next level of missions (in order to grind them over and .....) . This is a big pity really because I have always thought that the missions are interesting and challenging PVE content the FIRST time you do them. Trying to do missions in a slightly underpowered ship (level 2 in destroyer for example) is a great way to learn about ship fitting.
Actually, here's how you trivialize all low-level EVE missions, including ones that spawn a bunch of ships on top of you.
* Fit long range weapons e.g. missiles
* As soon as you warp in and have ships on top of you, fly at max speed (afterburners on) in a random direction
* Once all enemies are an appropriate distance behind you (e.g. 15km), adjust your speed to keep pace with them, and start firing missiles.
* Try to ignore the boredom until they're all dead
Every time you leave dock there is some risk you will loose a ship. Maybe you weren't paying enough attention and got warp scrammed, maybe your drones wound up getting systematically taken out leaving you vulnerable to interceptor frigates, maybe it's just your 20th mission of the day and by gum you left all your scout drones at base for whatever reason. whatever the cause, no matter how much preparedness you invested in, your ship will at some point go boom. That's even without taking into account the manifold ways a griefer can help the process along.
Then there is how I have played eve to do missions. Have 3 accounts, Buy 6 Plex, Fit 2 BSs and a Cruiser, Multibox, Grind the mission.
In Eve, the fun really comes from the PvP side of the game, be it in industry or combat, because you are facing other human beings, with their own tendancies and tactics. For many of us, the PvE content is just a means to an end, that end being the "pvp game" in all it's forms.
EVE is not designed for the solo player.
Yes, unless you are part of a good size corp that you can do stuff with them and generally socialize to avoid getting bored, "leveling up" in EVE is rather a long process. When a year back I tried to move to the next ship, EVEMon told me I need 192 days. That's when I stopped logging.
When i see a plan that tells me it's gonna take say... 90+ days i'm like "WOOOOOT !! I am SOOO gonna rock when that's done ! Can't wait, getting on it RIGHT NOW !"
I think you've hit on something that's quite fundamental to Eve. It's a game that plays best if you're ok to leave it alone sometimes and play Eve Offline. I took quite a lot of breaks in my Eve playing and am now really loving it and playing it a lot. It's a pretty great feeling to leave it for a month come back and blast missions into dust that used to be too tough.
I was just reading a post on the EVE Forums where the responder told OP that two months was not a long training time.
Ah, the "NBSI" ("not blue? shoot it") principle.
There is an old adage that if you end up in a fair fight in Eve, someone made a mistake. If you look at the lore, New Eden is described as a nasty, violent, cutthroat galaxy. The game mechanics reflect that and by extension, so do the players. Philip Zimmbardo calls this the Lucifer Effect.
Unfortunately there is quite a sound strategic reason for what happened to you. The key to holding a piece of 0.0 space is to have full claim on its resources. If anyone can just waltz into that territory and use its resources the whole strategic advantage of claiming it would be made moot. You trespassed on their territory and got a shotgun blast in the face so you would not do it again. Plus you might have been a spy, scouting things out for an attack. Your mere presence in the area was a threat that had to be neutralized. You are upset for the wrong reasons. The PvP in EVE is based on very base RL principles and lacks the tools for players to civilize things properly. It is tribal based and you did not belong to the right tribe.
There might be some corps that don't shoot strangers on sight; most probably will, thinking you are either enemy spy or just a profiteer on their property.
CCP isn't stupid and the community of EVE is largely the result of game mechanics that encourage a cutthroat, shoot first ask questions later attitude. People are natural risk/reward optimizers. If you create a context in which people can exert their power over others with no potential recourse, guess what happens? Even Darkfall has had to progressively implement systems to safeguard new players, in essence adding in recourse, to discourage players from using the most optimal (and sadistic) strategy: gank newbs.
EVE is meant to be cutthroat and not friendly at all. The lore of New Eden support that. Very much like Cyberpunk in space. EVE is mainly about the PvP, and PvP is all about "if you're not on my team, you die". You weren't part of those 0.0 dwellers allies, hence you died. It's not about simple ganking. It's all about protecting their interests. Since there's no other way for them to keep intruders out of their space (you can't turn gates off), they have to shoot intruders. Just stopping you and telling you to go back through the gate might not work, as you could be a spy, or might try to flee somewhere else in the system once they stop scrambling you. It's not the players fault, it's the game. There's simply no other way to protect their space. Is it ganking? Not really. The gankers/griefers in EVE tend to can bait, scam people in highsec, or pirate in lowsec. You might not like that form of play, but it doesn't mean that EVE is broken.
What you experienced is how some people play this game. They log in, sit on a gate, and hope someone comes through. Sounds real exciting, huh?
Conquering nullsec is about creating your own end game. It is all about status, prestige, money and warfare. Every alliances wet dream is to get their name on this map: http://go-dl1.eve-files.com/media/corp/Verite/influence.png . That map is a territorial map and basically says that your alliance has accomplished something in game. Other reasons for owning null sec space is ofcoz all the riches you get out of it by installing infrastructure hubs and the use of bridges (gates between far distant systems) so you can move gods to your null sec bases quickly. Nullsec also has conquerable stations and you can build your own stations if your alliance has enough money to do so, this is also one way of putting your "landmark" in the eve end game since these cant be destroyed. Industrialists also loves nullsec because the high end moon minerals they can get and high grade minerals from mining so they can buy nice shining ships and ofcoz, the possibility to put up POS:es so they can research and even build those null sec only capital ships. Ofcoz, just getting fat on nullsec will be boring in the end so some PvP oriented alliances ofcoz search out other people to destroy, eg defending their own territory or hunting in enemy alliances territory and looking for fights. Warfare might not be so fun (POS shooting etc) but it is essential for nullsec holding alliances. I personally think it is fun trying to out man your enemy and take territory, even if it ends up in a blob fest with lag.
The only thing less fun that being blown up the instant you go through a gate into a nullsec system? Sitting next to that gate waiting for someone to come through so you can blow them up.
Basically Eve is a basic model that WORKS but it's clunky as all hell. In a lot of ways it's a lot like EQ I, it encourages really handcore mentality and really caters to the hardcore long-term players.
For me, the issue is not player controlled 0.0. There is a perfectly good reason for them to kill everyone; they have claimed space and want to profit from it and don't want spies, pirates or vanguards in their space. Arguably in that environment, politics, planning and employee motivation are far more important than combat skills. At its best it could be epic. The fact that you would be just as dead in lo sec, for no real reason other than sadism is what I find annoying and pointless. Especially people who shoot new pilots in their rookie ships.
The constant sense of danger was one of the best facets of EVE for me. Every time I left the security of high sec space my heart started pumping faster. It turned what would otherwise have been very boring courier trips into a roller coaster ride of emotion. Whether there was a legitimate strategic reason why people were trying to kill me or whether they were just griefers looking to ruin someone else's day didn't matter a damn. The fact was a whole lot of people were out there trying to blow up my ship and pod me. I did lose ships and I did get podded many times and yes it always sucked but the times when I got away by the skin of my teeth as my screen flashed red and my body surged with adrenaline remain among my greatest video gaming moments ever. So this masochism is probably not everyone's cup of tea but I think that EVE without the danger would be a very boring game that would be even more niche than it is now.
Only to find that for all the hype people give EVE, theirs no "catching up", you can't even play hard-core to catch up due to the "EVE Offline" factor, and a new player is shut out of the political system and podded for transgressions they may not understand. All your posts about the greater meaning of this closed system are simply an impassioned warning - we have enough people in EVE, new players not welcome.
To get us hooked, we need some nice new-player-experience. Something EVE not only doesn't offer, but due to the skill system cannot offer.
In most cases, consider nullsec to hostile unless you belong to the residing alliance as almost all nullsec operates on the NBSI principal. The point is to keep people out of their space, and to try and keep a handle on intel being leaked out. I would wager that bullying has very little to do with it, think of it as SOP. It also has nothing to do with a strategic challenge, think of it as entering private property with 'Will shoot on sight' warnings posted.
In real life there is no such a thing as fair pvp. Eve simulates real life.
It's a GAME. That's the bottom line really, but I will expand upon that. It's also a game that you pay to play. When the peasants, which aren't a part of the ruling few get ganked over and over again WHATEVER THE REASON they will just stop playing.
They don't want you ratting, mining or possibly even traveling through that region without permission.
You might think you're just a frig, why not let me go ? Well you could be a spy, or you could cyno in capitals. So if you're not on the blue list you get destroyed, it's as simple as that.
I completely agree with whoever said the UI is awful though, that is probably the greatest of EVE's current failings.
But we're not on Earth in EVE. We're in new eden. A very cold harsh, dog eat dog universe ! That's where the roleplay comes in ;). That's the most basic thing you have to remember about Eve. Even if you don't pvp as in ship vs. ship.
Tobold's blog asks if camping gates in 0.0 is really the end game, if being the bigger bully is what people strive for in eve. Of course it isn't, but as your skills grow in-game, as you get better, fly more ships and learn to survive you begin to gather friends and form some kind of direction, be it mining, PvP or otherwise. Doing these things in a social structure makes life more interesting and also makes Eve or any MMO game interesting. Those pilots could have been camping that gate to deter numerous small gangs from infringing on their space, protecting their miners, or just hoping for another similar sized gang to engage in a ~goodfight~ with.
EVE's design includes features that touch on many of your points. It does indeed have substantial restrictions on PvP options - or at least it has large core areas of space where the consequences of random PvP is sufficiently severe that only lolsociopaths engage in it or for the less pathologically comedic the financial benefits have to be substantial (aka suicide ganking). Most of EVE's population lives there. It's called "hi-sec", it's "safer space". Ganking still happens, but it's an exception that provides thrills-and-chills rather than the daily rule. It's probably fair to describe the majority of EVE's player population as risk-averse, that's why hi-sec exists, or rather because CCP built it that way, people were prepared to come and stay.
EVE, at it's core, is an economic simulation powered in part by demand caused by from ship losses in null-sec.
I have been playing EVE for a couple of weeks now and I can say that while EVE is interesting, it is not exciting yet. The "yet" part is important I think and I am prepared to be patient and continue the learning process.
Null sec is dangerous, it is very much a feudal society, with coalitions coming and going, with standings being used to identify who you'd should trust, distrust, and hate. If you don't want that, then live in high sec. It's a perfectly valid choice, with many people making their entire career based on doing this, focussing on being the best and richest. Personally, I love the thrill of all out war, the fact that it is not fair, that it is evil, nasty, and vindictive; is for me a cathartic release.
Once again, New Eden is a cold harsh universe.
For a lot of people, a world where everyone is a hero is even less fun, and less realistic, than the mechanics / environment in a game like EVE.
"Come play our game because you are shlub and want to be lead around by the hand by people who have actually done the work/research for you." Yeah, that would move boxes. Not only is the average player not likely to become Alexander, but they aren't even interested when they realize the responsibility.
But when EvE and Darkfall actively promote awesome space battles and castle sieges, yet the reality of the game is months of PvE and grinding, the problem is with the devs, not the player who is lead to believe that awesome PvP will happen as a daily part of gameplay.
The world is full of a@@hats. At least EVE empowers you -- as a gamer -- to avoid and/or get back at them.
EVE PvP should be compared to UO, not WoW. When you die the cost of death is everything you brought to the scene.
The 'heart' of EVE is the PvP and the politics of 0.0 space. I find the base PvP of EVE too uninteresting and the 'meaningful goals' mostly self-delusion. At the same time I find the politics to be petty and merely a way for bored players to spice things up. I like to see myself too much as a 'rugged individual' type to participate in the 'cog in a machine' system that creates.
Watch any 3 children playing together for long enough and you will see a 2 vs 1 conflict developing. It is in our nature and EVE and Darkfall allow us to revel in it, indeed even say that is the way of the game.
Strategy is about shaping a conflict in such a way that all battles you need to win are unfair.
Most do camp either to protect their territory from cyno ships, spies, ninja miners, to take your ship components, etc. They have very legitimate reasons for it. They don't have a way to ask for your noobie badge so they can let you go on your merry way even if you aren't a spy or picking up a ship deeper in from another station. So yes they're going to blast you, and you know what, even popping a newbie ship will at least keep them on edge and provide some fun until the bigger targets do come through.
the more strategy there is the to gameplay the more likely that tactical combat will be wildly unfair (since the whole POINT of having a strategy is to make things tactically unfair).
All of this has absolutely nothing to do with fair - fair is a fallacy.
I personally like the adrenaline i feel when I fly an expensive ship through dangerous space. without that risk of sudden and violent death looming on the horizon, it would be much more boring.
The point is that in a very competitive PvP game, whoever starts first has more chances of winning. And for a new player, starting today, he has a very long road to take if he wants to be a competitive part of the action.
You need more then a few weeks to be competitive, but you don't need years, just a few months if you specialize.
Eve isn't for the instant gratification / ADHD crowd, it requires perspective, patience and endurance. Finally, on fair fights, I would concede that Eve is a haven for griefers.
Like I said a couple of time before, New Eden is a dark, harsh, rough universe. Expect to be ganked at every gate, expect all your mining cans to be flipped and expect every contract on the market to be a scam. That is the harsh reality of Eve. Some people like it, most people don't.
This isn't WoW. Everything isn't handed to you on a silver platter.
Well, to be able to play a PvP game you have to be able to not take it personally when a bunch of more-experienced players gank you on a regular basis. Its something not everyone can do. I know I can't. It does seem kinda anti-social to me, but hey, its not real-life, its a game. The attraction of these games for some players is the steep learning curve and level of difficulty. This high level of difficulty makes the game more rewarding when you finally are able to achieve some level of success in PvP.
It is very difficult to pay back someone for a wrong that they've done to you.
I just think you aren't understanding the reasons for gatecamping. It isn't because they enjoy beating up people weaker than them (which is what I associate with "bully"), but rather that they are protecting their home space. What they enjoy is being part of an alliance that owns some space in the game, and camping key gates that are entrances to that space is what you have to do to keep that space.
Of course podkilling occurs in 0.0. Podkilling is an annoyance and if you want people out of your system, annoying them is one very effective way to do so.
Yeah, there are no fair fights in EVE. Given that the actual combat mechanics (i.e, clicking on stuff) is stupidly easy, setting up these fights is about the only meaningful interaction the players have in PVP.
I've been playing EvE long enough to realize that "fair fight" doesn't exist in their vocabulary. the more UNeven fight (in their favor obviously) the better the fight.
As somebody who has spent hours camping (0.0 entry) gates, I'm going to have to disagree with that strongly. Gate camping is part of routine maintenance of your space, exerting influence so hostiles can't just wander through your space and kill miners and such. It's something you do when there's nothing interesting going on, it's incredibly boring and people who can afford stuff worth stealing very rarely jump through without a scout (unless, as in one memorable case, they are drunk).
It sounds like the game of travelling in nulsec is a geopolitical game of diplomacy, subterfuge, and overt war as opposed to a sportive PvP combat game. So if you like playing that kind of game, then Eve sounds fine. If you are looking for Battlegrounds or some other sportive PvP combat, it sounds like Eve for the most part won't provide that (unless you decide to set up your own league).
I think Eve is ultimately all about the nullsec wars. Sure most people are in high sec but they're in high sec planning to take over the galaxy one day.
I believe EVE is a "niche" game in that it appeals to a smaller spectrum of gamers. I also judge EVE to be a fairly successful niche game. EVE is niche because of the sandbox-like nature and "war-like" PvP combat.
If you wanted to play cooperatively with other players, then EVE seems among the last games I would want to try that in. The scams, threats, spys, and players who join just to be able to kill you without consequences mean that people are quite slow to trust you and you should be even slower (never?) to trust them.
People are still missing the point and lashing out with condescending responses. You can call it “defending territory”, but it’s still a form of ganking or bullying when they spend long periods at a time camping out in one spot for the purpose of killing any random person there. It’s not the fact that they killed him, it’s that the game encourages them to wait there for anyone. If you can get past your anger at Tobold for badmouthing your game with words that seem to personally offend you, then you’d see that his participation has nothing to do with his point. Yes, he had lots of warning, yes he knew it would happen, and yes it’s not common, but it’s still a form of PvP that he wouldn’t find fun on either side, and neither would I. And that’s the whole point.
It sounds to me like "fun and interesting for new players" activities that have been suggested all involve avoiding combat. Mining, hauling freight, maybe a bit of exploring but "bring a cloak" so you can hide. Survivable battles do not appear to be an option, until you have invested considerable time. I can see that some would enjoy this, but it has zero appeal to me, and probably little appeal to most new players.
If you enjoy scanning, then do that. For more of a challenge, try to scan down other players (you can either do this for the purposes of invading their mission and stealing salvage/loot from them, or 'ganking' them, or simply for shits and giggles) For even more of a challenge try scanning other players down in low security space, where they should be on the lookout for your probes and will be moving around alot more.
EVE is not fair, it was never supposed to be fair and not a single EVE player in his right mind would claim that EVE and especially EVE PvP is fair. If you get into a fair fight in EVE then your either at Alliance Tournament or you messed up. To make this clear i'm going to quote CCP Wrangler, who is Senior Community Manager at CCP: "EVE is a dark and harsh world, you're supposed to feel a bit worried and slightly angry when you log in, you're not supposed to feel like you're logging in to a happy, happy, fluffy, fluffy lala land filled with fun and adventures, that's what hello kitty online is for."
The game isn't for everyone, it's niche. That means people who love the game love the game, and get upset when they're told it's bad. Because it's not bad for them, and they don't want other people who haven't played the game yet to hear it's bad.
Eve is more than a game. It is the most complete example of a virtual world that I know. A dark dangerous unfair place with few limits where you live or die by your wits. Eve is the closest simulacrum of the Hollywood wild west we have.
I think PvP inside an MMO really teaches one thing; what society would be like without police. And I'm already quite sure that they both really suck.
I could also point out that you aren't ganking a small group. The EVE naught dot naught community includes the guys from SA. If I were too enumerate what they would do if you were even remotely close to ganking them it would probably come across as a threat which is not my intention here.