Friday, June 27, 2014


So earlier this week as part of the Blog Banter I claimed that EVE and its community does not help enough new players for finding their way in this complex universe. Now let me lay out the broad strokes of what I think needs to occur to improve the situation.

1. CCP needs to stop depending on third party tools to the job the in game tools cannot. DotLAN maps needs to be integrated into the client and replace the virtually unusable in game star map (Solar system map is not as bad). The in game ship fitting tool needs to allow a full range of experimentation and feedback for turning mods on, off, and overheated like Pyfa or EFT. And so on.

2. There needs to be better tutorials on ship fitting in game, explaining the basic concepts of tanking, weapons, and electronic warfare and why dual tanking or fitting mixed weapons is bad.

3. We need to scrap stupid skills that have no purpose other than to make new players weaker than veteran players. EVE's complexity already ensures that in a fight a veteran in a frigate and a newb in the same frigate with the same applicable skills, the winner will 99% of the time will be the experienced pilot. So why do we need to further gimp the new player with skills like Power Grid Management and Weapon Upgrades to ensure they struggle even longer for months after starting? While I don't think a new player should start the game and have the complete skillset for every weapon and ship in the game, I don't think they should struggle to fit standard modules and move extra slow because they haven't trained Navigation V yet either.

4. We need official arenas. We need a place where players can go and hone their skills in a completely risk free manner on a level playing field. Don't give me that shit about "just use SISI" because the point of this exercise is to make it easy for new players to get into the complexity of EVE without having to become an experience veteran first via the school of hard knocks. World of Tanks works because you just get in a tank and go and it costs nothing to get the experience you need quickly. It would take nothing for high sec to have "gaming areas" only accessible by rookie ships fitted with civilian mods, and then expand that further with some sort of match system and points calculator. It would provide no actual in game advantage but would allow new players to learn the adrenaline fueled art of PvP basics without the sheer frustration of getting ganked in low sec by a boosted veteran in a pirate faction ship with deadspace modules.

5. The community needs to realize we are ganking the next generation, from high sec newbs to new alliances in null sec, and take action. Because if we don't we are only ensuring EVE's slow decline into irrelevance.


  1. If, and I stress the if, EvE were to have arenas, why not make them in the style of Mechwarrior? Have them be a test simulator a player gets to simply by clicking the button. No travel required because it's just a simulator on the toon's own pc/whatever. That way, players can practice flying around and seeing just how bad/good their skills are without creating an instant-on pvp arena that will pose a serious danger to the game.

  2. What would you think of extending the change that CCP has been making recently and making level 4 the maximum level that unlocks the next tier of skills? Level 5 would then be the exclusive preserve of people trying to squeeze every last little bonus out of their character.

    You could make high-end exceptions, perhaps, for supercapitals. But because it's literally only a question of time before you can fly one, that just continues to postpone the inevitable.

  3. 1) Why feed the cow when you get the milk for free? CCP rarely deletes anything when they can just add something else.

    2) Maybe the navies could offer arcs that introduce things more quickly, like an entire rack at a time instead of one module at a time. There could perhaps be some shiny images or even gifs which say, "hey, this is a passive shield fit."

    In the long run, we need a PVE system that is reflective of player interaction. Really now, why are there three Serpentis battleships hanging out in a random belt? Wouldn't it make more sense that there would a single, genuinely aggressive tackle npc that will batphone other npcs relative to the level of npc build-up in that system? Shouldn't there be a couple of civilian npcs roaming about in industrial ships, and I don't mean a hauler full of trit that doesn't seem to have anywhere to go, much less a functional warp drive. If NPCs routinely tried to escape, people would probably learn their way around a warp disruptor.

    3)Addressing generalist skills ought to be in the pipeline following meta tiericide. The justification for removal of fitting or other universal skills is no different than that of removing learning skills. The complaints of the 90% who depart outweigh those of that stay.

  4. 1. Agree
    2. Agree, expand ISIS, have general fitting guideline for fits as a new window on ship info. Have a crowd sourced guide incorporated into the client from CCP chosen experts. Can't just be general people due to what you see on Battleclinic.
    3. I don't think these skills should be just given out. But I would be for a better way for new players to catch up. Those with less than a year, to train faster, or earn bonus SP. But not on all skills. Would require some active gameplay. I have no specifics in mind.
    4. I would think that EVE Arenas should be setup as places that pilots in set up matches, with set options 1v1,4v4 etc. can set parameters for a fight and be placed in a virtual (instance). I think there should be ingame betting and viewing of these fights, I think that they should not be free, but having a Arena fight should be taxed based on the items being simulated and require a minimum bet from all participants. Eg, a 1v1 fight between 2 T1 frigates using only t2 modules or less, would be like 1000-10000 isk tax with a minimum ante of 10000-100000isk from each player. Winner would get the 20000-200000, from the prize pull but the tax would be a sunk cost for using the stations hardware. The tax and ante would scale based on size of ships, number of players, Tech level of ships, tech level of allowed modules, etc. Activities in eve all have a cost so should an Arena. But it should be way cheaper than having to learn out in space the hard way.
    5. I agree, but good luck with this.

  5. It's hard enough being a solo frig pilot that lives in lowsec. Come out and cut your teeth in lowsec, everyone has had to do it. I don't agree with your 4.

    The only other comparison I can make is when Starcraft 2 stopped showing number of losses for not elite players and then eventually an unranked matchmaking system. Killed the game for me.

  6. Anonymous12:29 pm

    Why not have NPC corporations do some of the things that player run corps do? There is no reason a brand new player shouldn't get free replacement frigates (and modules too, come ot think of it) from whatever NPC corp they start the game affiliated with.

    As a new player I was never really happy about a new ship until I could buy two of them - because I knew there was a good chance the first one would end up in pieces because of some aspect of the game I hadn't learned to take into account yet. Life would have been a hell of a lot easier if I knew that not *every* mistake I made was going to cost me.