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.