Enticement to Play
One of the things that I think makes the game exceptionally bad for new players is: it’s very unrewarding to new players. You just don’t feel like you are getting a lot done. There’s a reason for that. You aren’t. This shouldn’t be a huge surprise, EvE is a game where everyone contributes to the same sandbox, and plays in the mess that results. New players probably shouldn’t have as much impact as older, more committed bittervets. They simply haven’t contributed enough to enjoy the unique fruits of EvE.
That being said there’s no reason to punish them by making them sit and wait for SP to tick up until they can do something worth actually doing. Another important observation: Skillpoints are worth FAR more to new players than they are to someone with 100m + SP. If you gave me a choice between 1m SP for Corelin, or 100k each for the two alts on his account I’d take the 200k and be delighted. Seriously. I have no idea what to do for Corelin next. Meanwhile, as Ripard Teg points out, there’s a ton of stuff a new character has to learn to be useful. Well, there’s a ton of stuff a new PLAYER has to learn too. Eliminating core skills would just allow everyone to alt up that much faster, which definitely invokes Malcanis’ law. Now let me try to avoid it.
Reward all players with SP relevant to the activity they are doing. Firing guns? Bonus SP applied to any gunnery skill. Hit the afterburners? Navigation time! Jumping/warping/flying your ship? Hey spaceship command got some love! This rewards players for logging in and doing things. Buying and selling a lot gets you some Trade skills, slogging away at inventions helps science skills, setting up colonies for PI.
This would be a tremendous boon for new players. It would reward them for doing what we want them to do anyway, getting in the game, flying around and interacting. This also allows them to expand their capabilities faster. Frankly a character that is zooming around, using systems and gaining experience SHOULD learn faster than a character who is never even logged in. How much faster I leave to CCP, but I think looking at systems like Perpetuum or Battlestar Galactica Online, where SP either accumulates and/or is earned, and THEN is allocated as needed, I find the EvE system to be somewhat lacking. What’s even better is allocating the accumulated XP would frankly be rewarding, think about spending a fair amount of time playing according to the way you want, and having 50k or so SP built up to drop on a couple supporting skills you really weren’t looking forward to training, without interrupting your quest for that shiny new ship.
And no, you don’t get backdated experience for all your frantic clicking. Neither do you need it frankly.