Monday, 26 August 2013

2 years of EVE, and the paths I treaded on.

By Outof Bound, an inspirational and "history" post.

A couple of days ago, my first ever EVE character would have turned 2 years old. He never existed longer than 3 weeks before being biomassed. (He had done... "unmoral" things). My second character turned 2 yesterday.

What a long, strange, and mostly fun journey it has been. Although I have had lots of offers from RL friends when I started, I had the urge to read up things for myself. After paying the price for a lot of misread information and stupidity, I slowly figured out how different parts of EVE worked, and more importantly, worked together.

I started out with some exploring, some production (Mining Crystals and Ammo), PI, and mission running, while also getting my feet wet with invention. Back then a friend convinced me to directly move to LowSec, where I set up a POS that is still running today, mostly doing research and reactions. I actually flew that POS into that system with an Iteron, and it took me ages to set up and fuel. Even though "older" friends told me they had already made the system better. Then came the Fuel Blocks.

Later, while skilling for more industry I learned that I needed more characters. So a Trade Alt and a Hauling Alt were created. Soon, I moved from PI [Foo's note: for shame] and sorts to doing Hauling work, eventually joining professionals: Red Frog. Only a couple of weeks later I had the skills and joined Black Frog, jumping my Anshar under heavy adrenaline rushes into Low and NPC NullSec. By that time I was making money with hauling and invested that into the BPOs I needed to build capitals. That was a couple of hundred Jumps ago, and that trusty Anshar still does it's job very well.

My first Moros came off the delivery line about year ago, and I continued to build capitals for a while, expanding on my BPO library. A while back prices started to fluctuate, so I stepped down and did some T2 invention, selling the BPCs for profit instead of manufacturing Dread, and built a couple of Jump Freighters.

For a while I dabbled in POSes doing reactions for me, and supporting Ice Miners in the belts and buying their Ice to support Jump Freighter logistics all around New Eden. With Odyssey the pilots stopped mining, and so I shut down that part of my endeavours.

During time I siphoned off some money from my projects and created an Alliance, "Free 2 Play", which is an ongoing project with friends. I never jumped into it 100%, and purposely kept things going casual. I got my feet wet with Sov by hijacking some NullSec systems for the Alliance, learning mechanics, even though we are still far from claiming a NullSec home, even today.

Also, I have always been trading/hauling/producing stuff, because I had goals I set for myself: Being capable of flying and building my own Titan, and then a Station. I never intended to "use" them, but the race for me was being able to do it, having the skills, logistics and capabilities. I haven't built the Titan, but I have all BPOs needed for it. I could build that station, but I don't have the Sov for it. And that's fine. For now.

Two years after stepping a foot into the game I'm capable of earning between a PLEX worth of ISK a day with minimal effort of about an hour of "work". Not because I have some magic method, or some super secret thing I know, but because I explored the game and learned from playing and the different interaction between "professions" in the game and running my own math. I know about PI and Manufacturing, Mining and Sov mechanis not only because I read about them, but tried them out myself. I made a lot of mistakes, and looking back it has been a long and expensive road to travel, but I treasure every day of it. First hand experience is important, but most important is this: In EVE, question everything. Not because it might be a scam (although it often is), but to try it out yourself if you don't risk your own stability with it! There are a lot of niches to find and settle down in.

So, where to go next? Maybe I should try the Leadership/Meta game. Maybe I should ask around for people I know in RL and use that ISK I make to help them step (back) into New Eden and pay for their accounts until they are self sufficient. Maybe I should put more effort into the Alliance. I wasn't "there", I was "there at a lot of places". And furthermore: "I will be at that other place, wherever it may be, soon". Even after 2 years, there are so many more things to discover and try, so many plans that can be pursued.

Finally, why do I write this? To "teach" you an often overlooked lesson: Whatever someone tells you about EVE Online, don't take it for granted of as correct. Try and explore the Sandbox for yourself, on your own terms and find your own ways.

Here's a (paraphrased) story of my other favorite game, Go:

A beginner of Go will only see white and black stones on a wooden board.
A student of Go will see Form, Influence, tactics and strategies.
A pupil of a Go master will see  Handicaps, and his own skill improving.
A Go master will only see white and black stones on a wooden board.

Fly safe.

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