You Got Story in MY EvE
Posted by Corelin
NPC story in EvE is rather limited. The Role-Play community rather decries it and swarms all over live events every time they happen. I am not a huge fan of role plying but I do pay some attention to the RP community.
Today my attention was called to a thread on the EvE online Forums. The most common refrain was “Join nullsec wars and make your own storyline. That’s what makes Eve great for me. Players make history. Not devs and writers.” and comments like it. Here’s my problem with that; not everyone wants to drive their own story, not everyone can handle or enjoys the skulduggery, chest beating, and occasional infantile outbursts that happen in null.
I’ve been part of a major, successful alliance all of twice. With Cult of War I took part in the great wars of nullsec, and found I enjoyed greatly the sense of community, the battles and even some of the reverses. Sadly it ended badly, with COW being chased out of null in ignominy. The loss of resources, opportunities, and friends was painful, but not very.
FWA was something else entirely. The alliance literally flew apart in a mess of backstabbing and accusations. All the opportunities, all the friendships, all the effort and all the hopes wrecked by other players. As a CEO I had very little say in what happened, the rank and file had practically no say at all in what happened.
I don’t blame anyone for not wanting to go into that end of the pool. Even highsec in EvE is a deeper, more dangerous pool than other MMOs. We put sharks in the shallow end. The deep end has monsters. At the same time historically CCP has done a lot of storytelling from live events in highsec, to chronicles, to news events. This gives interesting content to people who want to play the game, but don’t want to subject themselves to the whims of the “monsters” of EvE.
may be am harsh towards the more bearish elements of EvE but frankly they play the game to, and bringing them in is one of the surest ways of having more PvP players and targets. Eventually they will sharpen their teeth and claws and move on to bigger things, or at least find a way to make my ships cheaper. However with the EvE story languishing, or being provided in what amounts to a single channel dominated by the Mittanis, Helicitis and their ilk. This means that people who can’t see the point in EvE, or who might want to try but aren’t into the “hardcore pvp scene” don’t have an alternative that they can see. We might know better as players, but what do people coming in see? What opportunities are available to people who want to SEE the story, but might not was to really CONTRIBUTE to it?
CCP can look at it, and weight the positives and negatives. They probably have. In my experience the communities in MMORPGS scream bloody murder on the forums in the hierarchy of PvPers > “hardcore” PVErs > Regular PVErs > Market Goons > RPers. This has almost nothing to do with how important that portion of the community is, how big it is, or the state of its issue of the moment. PvP could be completely brilliant and PvP folks will whine and scream about something. Market could be buried under a horde of bots and there will be whispers. RP could languish without an update for years and the RP folks get ignored as they post in character on their own forums decrying the uncaring NPCs lack of interaction.
Empire needs to change in some fashion. The actions taken by both the capsuleer players and the NPC leaders need to be seen. The universe needs more awesome. Most of EvE doesn’t care about the 412th battle of NOL. They want to see what happened in Jita. More players have been to Jita than NOL. It shouldn’t take a lot of resources, heck the team working on it seems to have always had a handful of people. CCP doesn’t need to reinvent the wheel, they do need to push it once in a while though.