EVE Online- What is is

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Oct 25, 2009
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A few people in FX have asked me about EVE. Mostly in passing, but with some kind of interest in maybe trying it out. I encourage anybody that is curious and wants to give is a shot to go to http://www.eve-online.com and try the 14 day trial. You don't have to give any kind of personal information to try it, not even a credit card. You can do it fully anonymous and see what it's all about.

Most MMORPG games that you try will have defined stories, missions, constant levelling, and killing of computer generated enemies and the like. As a whole, EVE does have all this. There are NPC enemies, "rats" as the community terms them, there are missions for around 100 differant in-game entities, there are levels to the skills that you have to learn in order to fly better ships and use better equipment, and there is an overall story to the EVE universe and why you as a character are there.

But in my opinion as a person who has played a lot of MMORPGs EVE has an element that separates it from all others. It is also a strategy game, and a very open ended one at that. Aside from a few bare bones rules, EVE is a fully player run universe. On top of that, all players play on the same server. You do not have to select a server that your friends are on. EVE is a single shard universe who's current consecutive player login record stands at 55,834 online at once on the SAME server.

What this comes down to is that everything you do in EVE affects people. No matter if you are a new player or an experianced pilot in deep space. How can all those people live together? Well, EVE has 7000+ individual star systems. That's right, over 7000 zones to play together in. When you look at the numbers and distribution in areas, it is very likley that even with 50,000 people online, you can find a LOT of empty star systems. That's not to say that you will be alone though. Half the systems (around 3000) are in "Unknown" space that you can only get to through wormholes instead of the normal stargate network. Those systems have no local comms channel and you don't know if you are alone or not. Add to that the fact that there are no rules in Unknown systems at all. Anything you can think of can happen there within game mechanics. But with high risk comes high reward. Some of the most lucrative things in the game are there. But that's a bit advanced for an introduction thread. So enough on that for now.

As a new player, here's what you need to know for your first time in the game. You are a "Capsuleer" pilot and you are for all intents, immortal. You are represented in game by a character image, not a physical character model. When players see you, they see your picture, and the ship you are currently flying. Your ship "is" you for all intents and purposes. If you leave your ship, you will be in a "pod". Basically a little black egg floating through space. Your pilot is in there, plugged into the systems.

If your ship is destroyed, you will appear in your pod floating in space. Your pod can fly around like a ship, but it is very fragile. If somebody shoots it once, you will likley die. If your pod is killed, you are killed.

Death is not forever in EVE though. If your pod is killed, you "respawn" in a starbase of your choosing. You must select this station beforehand, and by default it is the station your character first appears in when you create it.

You respawn in what is known as a "medical clone", that is, a body that has been prepared for you that is geneticaly identical to the one you just lost in space. That clone HAS to have enough "space" to store your accumulated skill points. The default clone you always get has more then enough space for your skills as a new player, but as you advance in skills, you will have to upgrade your clone to match every so often.

If you are pod killed and your medical clone does not have enough space in it, you will LOOSE all skills beyond a certain point. This can literally wipe years of work from some players if they are that careless. People have in fact quit because they forgot to upgrade their clone and lost millions of skillpoints. I know I would. It's a mechanic that is in question by the community because you theoretically loose real world money in that you have to have an active, paid account to train skills in the first place, but it has not been changed. I do not like it, but it is a part of the game.

Beyond that though, it's cheap to upgrade a clone and you never really think about it after a few times. It's just a reflex to upgrade to the proper point.

Moving through space is fairly simple. You travel from star system to star system through what are known as "stargates". They are fixed structures in space that you jump through and appear in the next system. They span across EVE in a complicated network. Your route planner is essential, as is a 2nd party website called DOTLAN, run by the EVE community for long trips.

As a new player, you will probably run missions or mine asteroids to make some cash. Missions are accepted in station from "agents" and when completed, give you some standing with the NPC corporation you just worked for. Asteroids are all over and easily located in every star system in the game.

You will always have a rookie ship of the race you start out as. If you dock at (or are killed and respawn in) a station in your pod that you do not have assets at, you automatically get a free one. Rookie ships are fitted with a single low powered weapon and a low powered mining laser. You can change this, but that is the default that will always be there. So you can always go out and make some cash.

The markte in game is 100% player controlled for all intents and purposes. You can and WILL get scammed if you do not watch out. That's all a part of the EVE sandbox mentality. Scamming is a valid part of the game and has made people very rich.

Systems in EVE have differant security ratings ranging from 1.0 down to 0.0. The 1.0 is the most secure rating, only existing in "starter" systems for new players, but any rating from 0.5 - 1.0 is generally considered safe (even though you can still die). If a player attacks you in any of these systems, the automated in-game police called CONCORD will spawn and kill them off. Systems rated 0.1 - 0.4 are considered part of the in-game empires, but CONCORD does not spawn. The only protection you have there are automated turrets on gates and stations. They are not that powerful though, and if you are nowhere near them, you are screwed and will get no assistance from the game.

0.0 is an entirely differant ballgame. 0.0 (better known as null-sec) rated systems can be claimed by player alliances and believe me, they do NOT like unwanted intruders. There are literally NO rules in a 0.0 system at all. Anything that game mechanics allow can be done with only the bare minimalist exceptions that have been ruled to be exploits, but there are only 2 that will be fixed someday (maybe)

There are a few basic rules you need to know about.

1) Do not shoot other players in systems from 1.0 - 0.5 security. CONCORD will kill you.

2) Do not specifically try and "grief" (IE: ruin their day) players in systems with 1.0 security. This was enacted to keep new players from rage quitting. If you are a new player and are harassed in a 1.0 system, you can petition the GM's about it. There are only like 12 in the entire game though, to is't rare. Anywhere else, you're fair game.

3) Don't enter any system rated 0.4 or below as a new player without knowing you will die. If you don't care, please feel free to explore them.

4) You can and WILL be scammed on the market. Tread carefully and think before clicking "BUY" and you will be fine though. Scams are usually easily avoided.

Please do not let anything I have said discourage you. This game is by far worth all the risks and might just interest you. Personally, I tried the trial, said meh, and in 2 months had an inkling to try the game again. So I did and have not stopped since. Once you get training in, you can do some awesome stuff that you couldn't do as a new player. :) /emoticons/smile@2x.png 2x" width="20" height="20">

And just to show you come nifty game stuff, here you go. A few cool videos.

1) Just one of a million stories of null-sec territorial warfare made by a player:


2) CCP Trailer for an old expansion. Shows off the graphics. Everything here is player built and controllable:

http://www.youtube.com/user/CCPGAMES#p/c/F614A7A6461E61E1/11/maMjjUr6zIQ

3) CCP video about what EVE is with an example story:

http://www.youtube.com/user/CCPGAMES#p/c/F614A7A6461E61E1/3/08hmqyejCYU

4) Trailer for one of the latest expansions. Mirrors a fight I was a part of quite eerily, actually:

http://www.youtube.com/user/CCPGAMES#p/c/F614A7A6461E61E1/2/zDVEHE10nHc

Any questions, please say so here. I'd be glad to answer them and to help in any way. I know most of us are about FPS's but I've been asked about this a few times, so I thought I'd throw something together. :D /emoticons/biggrin@2x.png 2x" width="20" height="20">