Thursday, May 23, 2013

Veteran Classification

In the beginning, we enter Eve as wide eyed neophytes with nary a clue or inkling of the vast universe of possibilities and evil machinations. After a while you become more aware of what's going on and enter the

After a certain point, about 6-8 months in, a player in Eve moves to the convert stage (or they leave in frustration). The convert believes in the game and understands the major workings he is familiar with, but there is still a lot of mystery and wonder.

After the second year or so the convert has seen a lot more of Eve and moves into the professional phase, a player that has mastered his main area of interest and has passing knowledge of other areas or knows people who do.

But then, after that third year birthday passes, they become a veteran. They've been around for at least five expansions, two major CCP screwups, at least one controversy, and a handful of metagame drama... all that changes a mind, not always for the better. Veterans come in many shapes in sizes and this post will list the various archetypes the veteran form can take.

Bitter Vet

The most well known type of veteran is of course the Bitter Vet. The glorious beauty of space vistas and gleaming spaceships in a universe of complexity and options has been marred by the frustrations and occasional broken cogs. They can't quite quit, but they don't really play either. They stay subscribed, update skill queues, log in for some big events or CTAs, but really spend most of their time kvetching on forums about how much the game sucks and everything CCP does wrong.


The addict has become so enamoured with Eve and all its possibilities and combinations that they log in every chance they get. They often have multiple accounts, like many veterans, but they have more than normal. They multibox at all times and are often the drivers behind major components of alliances and corporations.

There are two sub-types of the Addict veteran, let's look at them separately.

==> Functional Addict

This type has allowed Eve to dominate their hobbies, but they still manage to go to work, raise a family, keep a partner happy, and generally are considered well adjusted. But every free moment of time they are logged into Eve. Every free thinking minute is spent pondering what to do in Eve next. This puts strain on the other aspects of their life but they manage to make it work. Mostly.

==> Dysfunctional Addict

But when the interest turns to obsession, things start to fall apart. Their coworkers notice a drop in productivity, all other hobbies and sports are left behind, and family members interrupt the player at risk of verbal and emotional abuse. This situation cannot last and as real life destructs around them, the addict either runs out of money or finally breaks free. Or both.


The metagamer veteran is kind of like a benign bitter vet: they don't log in and play so much but they enjoy the players they chat to in channels in game, twitter, blogs, forums, and in extreme cases podcasts. The social aspect has come to dominate their Eve experience and due to the relationships they have developed they cannot quit. They tend to become very bad pilots as time goes on, reference Siesmic Stan of the Freebooted blog.


The veterans who consider themselves casual are just as long term players as the rest but tend to operate at a slower pace. They log in infrequently in comparison and/or play shorter sessions. Due to the casual nature, they tend to be in solo or small corps with little in the way of in game responsibility, no usually no null sec for them.

There are two subtypes:

==> Casual Casual

The casual casual player logs in for fun, does some mining or missions, maybe a bit of PvP, but does not follow the metagame much and is not usually an expert in any areas.

==> Hardcore Casual

In contrast, the hardcore casual has enthusiasm for the game similar to the Addict veteran but simply plays less due to real life obligations or amazing self control.

* * * * *
Did I miss any? More importantly, where do you fit in?


  1. Anonymous7:19 pm

    Casual Casual I guess. I have no beef with the game, and I never regret the sub money I spend. But I never seem to be able to find enough bite-size fun to get me to reup at the end. EVE tends to be an all or nothing creature I think.

  2. newbie, but i have seen the fall of null sec coalitions(DRC), the sheer pettiness of addict metagamers.I know industry and it's in and outs, and for that i thank dav, willie white and inverse(looking them up in game won't get you much of anywhere). i would say that i did get addicted and am now more of a casual/metagamer casual. i would say that just having people to talk to and having flown in every kind of space does that.(58+ jumps to high though low and null(with 500+ km of bubbles) in an itty 5(only to get ganked in high sec)). i can say this, EVE is real, it will give you the chance to meet the best people, and show you the power of being the worst. EVE is one game where the results of your choices are shown by the respect you get, or the lack of it. In EVE you passion is your power. stay true to what you believe, be it ganking newbies or miners, or building a jump bridge network used by hundreds.

  3. I think I am something of a null sec casual at the moment. For the last few months I have generally only logged on for strat ops and CTAs. I leave Jabber up and when somebody calls, I log right in and join the fleet.

    But since my alliance is pushing participation in such things, the fact that I click the participation link and fly the alliance colors puts me in good standing for now. Or so I am told.

  4. I think I'm somewhere between Hardcore Casual, and Functional Addict, and decidedly moving towards the former.

  5. How do YOU classify yourself?

    I consider myself somewhere between casual and metagameror.
    Gevlon maintains that anyone that can pay for his account with plex is not casual, I disagree.

    1. I'm a Hardcore Casual who would be an addict if life would let me ;)

    2. Gevlon is a moron.

  6. Hardcore Casual for me. I love the game, I love reading about it but I don't have the time to be great at it or spend as much time as I'd like playing it

  7. Functional Addict. As you put it, I do what I need to do in RL, but eve dominates my hobby time. But hey I'm a broke college student, where else can you get this much entertainment for FREE!

    I would argue a bit with your timescale though at the beginning. Maybe that is how most people go through eve, but I'd say in my case after about a year and a half I was to the done most things phase, and by 2 years I was more/less a vet. I wouldn't say I've progressed experience wise a tremendous amount in the past year, more so on a personal, what am I doing with my eve life standpoint, than in game knowledge/experience.

    Though it's weird, to me at least, I'm going through a mid life crisis in eve it seems. Hopefully that doesn't mean I only have 3 more years to play.

  8. I'm Hardcore Casual / Helpful vet (should add something like that do the list imo)

    Helpful veteran: Someone that knows about most playstyles and a how they work in the game and is happy to help anyone that express a desire to learn more/something new but doesn't necessarily go out of their way to help people. Might hang around different help channels and answering questions.

  9. Hardcore Casual for me.

    You need another (sub)category : Hardcore lapsed.

    I know a large number of hardcore players that are on an eve-holiday. Strong players, good pilots, but RL challenges have them letting accounts lapse as they don't seem to have the time to PLEX up.

    Often they were hardcore casual - working in small corps/solo efforts, usually mission runners, pirates, WH-light dwellers.

    Is it a sign that small corp/solo players just fade away because large alliance play is the only long term draw?

    Is this a sign that CCP should be looking to change small corp/solo gameplay to entice these numerous EVE fans to resub (or replex) ?

    While getting new players is very important, not loosing these EVE players should also be important. These players already are hooked, they have extensive holdings in the game, and they can provide anchors and stability for new recruits in these small corps.

    1. And I should add, its not necessarily a monetary thing. For the vets I've talked to, its more that the people they like to play with have also cut back their time, and that they haven't found a new spark to fire up their desire to make things explode.

  10. I wobble dangerously between all of them, sometimes on a daily basis.

  11. Between Hardcore Casual and Functional Addict, slipping on the scale every few months.

  12. I'm a bitter hardcore casual functional addict :)

  13. Anonymous9:20 am

    Just realized that I regularly cycle through bitter vet, functional addict, and metagamer. Ugh.