Monday, April 17, 2017

I missed my epiphany

I was looking at my Facebook feed. Facebook amuses me. I post pictures of my plants, my dogs, and randomly harass serious people who are silly enough to let me make comments. I find that my appreciation for the ridiculous has increased greatly in the past few years.

One of my former co-workers gave up Facebook for lent. Never having practiced lent, I sit on the side lines and blink as people discuss what they are giving up. Lent has passed and she posted. However, she posted to say that being away from Facebook made her realize how much time she spent on it. She had a great time spending time with the things that really mattered.

It made me think about Eve. I see reference to Eve. I didn't remove CCP from my social media. I rarely delete browser history so I still get random Eve popups. I even got the e-mails about Fanfest and Eve Vegas (Linq, really?).  On my reddit feed, /r/eve pops up at times and I find myself wondering what game they are talking about for a second before I notice the subreddit.

All of this is to say that I have not yet felt the need to stand on a podium and have an epiphany where I cast Eve down and go on about how much value my life now has without it. How I can focus on REAL things.

That drives me nuts. Your interests are real. When you had them they obviously had value because you where interested. They may not be the thing that defines your life. New hobbies and interests may pop up. Obsessions can be rather consuming. None of this makes the thing that you did enjoy and spend so much time on a valueless, waste of time.

I don't hate Eve. I don't find myself, a year after I walked away the finder of true wisdom for what people should do with their free time.

Maybe, I'm broken.

I hope everyone is enjoying themselves. I took the time to delete the spam google missed. Sion has reminded me that I need to take the next step in sharing the memories I wrote after my two CSM terms. I did do that last year.

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Have you done your Eve Vegas Survey?

I did attend Eve Vegas to the shock of many. I'd already paid for it and allotted the time. It seemed that I should go.


I went to the Grand Canyon and Hoover as well. This is not the space to discuss those amazing places or my new Camera.

Eve Vegas was a bit harder for me to go to then I expected. I've detached from Eve for the most part these past months. It is very easy to be angry, frustrated, and bitter about the past that I lived on. The game, its development, and the players move on while I find myself emotionally stuck. That emotional stickiness does not need to be given to everyone else. Part of experiencing it was shielding people from it. But, as I accepted my items and stared down the poor gentleman that tried to put a wristband around my wrist, I realized that I wasn't in as good of a place as I had hoped to be.

That is where the Survey comes in. There are a few things that I could say and did say. A few of the questions made me want to say a bit more.

One was about the location. Planet Hollywood has hosted Eve Vegas for the last three years. It is not my favorite hotel by any means but it is an excellent venue. I spend a lot of time walking through the various hotels. It is fun to see what they stick in the corners.


What Planet Hollywood offers a venue like Eve Vegas is dining options. There is a mall that wraps around Planet Hollywood's casino called the Miracle Mile shops. There are a ton of dining options in there as well as several casual dining options around the front of Planet Hollywood. 

This is more than many casinos. Most balance on a theme and have a limited amount of space due to the size. A larger casino, such as Caesars is more focused on high rollers and has higher dollar value. While the Rio, off the strip, has a very limited number of places to eat.

Planet Hollywood wins because of the food. It allows all budgets to easily get things between events and that is a crucial thing that the Eve Vegas would lose if it moved to the Linq. 

Food in Vegas is no longer cheap. You can find a decent priced meal but you won't just trip over it. I watched my buffet price double between Friday and Saturday. As in 24 dollars one day to 40 the next. The same buffet but different days. Vegas nickles and dimes you and we must be conscious of giving people a flexible solution to their budgetary needs.

Planet Hollywood is roughly in the center of the strip. The year that Eve Vegas was at the Rio, getting to the strip was a pain. This made entertainment and other dining options harder. Eve Vegas is a vacation for many people. They want to cram in as much as possible. Allowing easy access allows more people to have greater value from their time. That increased value rolls to higher chances of players coming to another Eve Vegas.

I managed to have a twenty minute conversation with the ladies from the company running the store. I also made some promises that I need to follow up to getting them information gathered from the players in the past about what they want to see in the Eve Store.

There was a key chain for example. I was both pleased and not. A key chain! Finally! It was an archon. I did not want it. But I did buy it. I purchased it to put my money where my mouth as been. I've wanted a key chain and I've wanted a mug. But what I wanted as a simple, rectangular key chain that said EVE on it. I purchased this second prize because I wanted to support the store. It became quite a passion of mine and I do believe in supporting what I want to see happen.

I also understand why they did the wrist bands. The previous years have had  large number of people that attend without paying. But the request to wear a shoddy paper wrist band for two days and the nasty, nasty staff from the hotel that checked them needs to be refined.

I attended exactly one talk and that was Keskora Yaari's Wormhole from Scratch. She was amazing. I attended no roundtable. While I felt strange without my notebook and pen I was too detached from events and caught in an emotional storm to do much more. For me, healing will take some time. For everyone else, fill out your survey and tell them what you want. I don't care for the Halloween weekend and tie ins. Others may have loved it and found ti a huge added value. No one knows if you don't say and when someone gives you a place to notify them, use it.

Monday, July 18, 2016

Blog Banter 77 - It is a sad thing, but one day the universe too will end

In this month's blog banter the question is basically, "Do all of these signs point to Eve dying?"

The simple answer is, "Yes."

But simple answers rarely do anything but make for quick reading.

Over the last four or so years, I've been very invested in Eve. I've pondered it personally and socially. I've flipped through the public's responses to it. There have been ups and downs but I was always positive that Eve would continue on forever.

That was the fan girl speaking. The rational is that it will not last forever. I don't think it will be some dramatic ending as someone bashed the server racks with a bat and CCP places the company logo on a boat and shoots and flaming arrow at it while it floats into the sunset. I think that it will be a gradual thing and as long as it continues to bring in money it will stay alive. CCP may stop developing it but there are many games that continue on with productive lives years after their development stops.

Eve's population is aging. We are proud of it but with aging comes problems. As I pondered this topic today, I realized that I know a lot of people in Eve that are like me. They don't have children. They don't have huge family connections. And I wonder, how many of us are there? Sure, we're a reasonable population but at the end of the day people have lives.

I once had a long discussion, in which I was looked at as if I am crazy, where I said that I believe one of the greatest reasons Eve does not have a large female population is because women are still most often the family caretakers. I was looked at funny for that does not go along with the narrative that Eve is full of woman hating evil and every female is chased away and there is no other reason but this.

Yet, time is so valuable. In January I got Intuition. He is eight months old this week.


I have so little time. I work 12 hour shifts. I've worked them for a decade now. In October, I got a lateral transfer with better hours. I work 1000-2200. I get home, tend the puppy, make dinner, play with the puppy, change and shower, walk the puppy, play with him some more, stop him from chasing the cats, harassing the other dogs, stealing tomatoes from the counter, and find I have no more time. 

Eve's greatest weakens is also one of its coolest features. Eve takes up a lot of time. I cannot sit down and dedicate four hours to the game. I have to get up. Make dinner. Prep dinner. Tend the puppy. Water the plants. Put clothing in the wash. Do dishes. Make more meals (I'm baffled by how much time keeping food on the table takes when you make all of it), tend the dogs, tend the cats, try to sleep 6 hours a night.

The list goes on and time in finite. I just don't have it to give except now and then. Only, Eve isn't a now and then game. It isn't a game you drop in and hop out of. It is a game that leads you down the rabbit hole and unearths you six hours later. I think that is wonderful and I also think that many people cannot commit to it.

There is not enough individual stuff to do in the game. PvE has been pushed aside for so long that I wonder if it can recover. The developers that have been handed the task are talented people. But, a decade of neglect must be overcome and as I watch plans shatter, and shatter, and shatter again I wonder if it can be done. People may kick and scream that Eve is a social game and it must be played with others but the simple reality is that people need to be able to dangle their feet in the water and enjoy a cool drink and the warm sun instead of committing to a triathlon every gaming session.

That is what makes it unappealing. That is when you decide if you want ti log in for the thirty minutes you have to spare just to get moved to a position to hopefully start an activity the next session. At some point, adulthood comes knocking and it demands its pound of flesh in sleep. Contrary to popular belief, many internet gamers have relationships and those people, tolerant they may be, want some time too.

And then there is the fact that the players are fanatics. Dedicated, obsessed, in love, Eve players defend their game. They obsess over CCP. There is a commitment that is loud and clear inside of the games community. It is a very loud sound, but new people are not being retained and older players drop off. Time, exhaustion, other commitments... they all take their toll. And toll fees do not spawn from thin air.


Sunday, May 22, 2016

Silence

It is quite unfortunate that I came out of the CSM a bit of a mess. That was never the goal. I had planned, way back, to brush my shoulders off and step back into my game life. The entire missing game life thing didn't really factor in. I still find that I'm at a loss with things having changes so much.

It is all rather dull. Life goes on. The world continues to spin about. Wars and ISK and words fly about in all directions. I'm stuck on the invisible edge of a collidable structure. Bouncing around, trying to free myself and go about with my day.

There are habits to unlearn. I have to stop answering questions on twitter. I get dragged into arguments and fights I don't want to fight anymore. It always starts with such innocence. "Oh, I know that answer. Let me be helpful." Then twenty tweets later I'm sighing as arguments rage around me.

It is quite tiring. I do not thrive off of argument. I realize I don't care about being right and having the loudest opinion. It is all exhausting stuff.

Still! Fallout 4 is quite good. I've been chewing away at it here and there. The puppy is exhausting. The last few weeks have been a trial. We're transitioning from baby puppy to young asshole dog. It is not always a smooth transition. I do miss sleeping in. Sadly, he has decided that he needs to eat things that will kill him and promptly attempted to get blocked with a large portion of his bed. This delightful new habit has delayed the chances of him doing things like sleeping on my bed. My bed is full of lovely fabrics that can be eaten in large, intestine blocking chunks. I do admit, this phase will be nice when its past.

And my husband has almost finished the build on my new machine.

As for figuring out Eve?

I am going to Eve Vegas. I got my ticket when they went on sale.

I expect the blog to not have much to say for a while.  I decided to do what works best and write it out. All the things I never said. The things that happened. The good and the bad. It helps quite a bit. Sometimes, to often in truth, it is very hard. I hope, with it, I can purge it from my mind and start to heal. The side effect will be a detailed recollection of the term.

Maybe people will want to read it. Maybe not. It is nice to get it out. Holding it in, being mature, not saying things for the fact that the release was not worth the damage became a surprising burden. There were many surprising things along the way. People, even when they are doing their best to harm you for having the gall to try to help them, are fascinating.

I hope to have something interesting to say again. I'm giving myself a break from trying for now. If I write I write. If I do not, that is okay as well. I'm still here but I think I am going to continue to indulge in still quiet for a time.

One thing the CSM did do is make me very interested in studies about introversion. Can trying to force yourself into things just make it worse? I never became comfortable with the public eye. I did not grow to enjoy it. I feel now like I feel when I've had to many social obligations in to short a time.

Tired.

We shall see! With time this empty, withered husk that once contained my energy and passion should heal.

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Five second rule

When did my skill queue turn yellow and get filled with yellow stuff? I'm pretty sure I looked at my alts skill queue a week ago. I'd have noticed this yellowness... wouldn't I?


The yellowness is confusing. Maybe it is my unallocated skill points? 

Update: It is. I am so fancy. 

I only noticed because my skill queue ran out.


I went almost thirty seconds with an empty queue! Oh well! And there I am finishing off T3 skills. I hate T3s and they are on my list of things I won't ever fly again.

89,921,079 skill points so far. Almost at ninety. A bit closer to 100,000. Why? I dunno. But it seems to be a thing.






Monday, May 2, 2016

Red and Yellow

"Sugar! Sugar! What are you going to do?"

"I don't know!"

That is my standard answer to things these days. I don't know. I don't have any goals. I'm floating along for now and seeing what happens.

I am enjoying not keeping up with things. It is lovely.

I am still fighting the good fight for all my haulers out there to get contracts increased to the max load for a Charon. No more wasted space!

And I undocked an alt and wandered off to get money. I just don't feel like doing anything with Sugar. She should be doing something productive and the thought of accessing and moving my stuff is just such a weight right now. The more mature approach is to just blow it all off and do something else.

And that is how I wound up doing the tutorial missions for money. The sucky thing is that skills have changed. My alt is old. She wasn't getting the starter skill books anymore which is why I wandered off to do the tutorial. It sucks because her skills are super dumb and useless.

But, do not fear. She now has two million ISK. That's right. Suck it! Enough to buy her some starter skill books and learn how to shoot a autocannon or two.

I'm hot shit. Hull upgrades here I come.

And I got a Venture! The world is amazingly simple when you have some veldspare in your hangar.

I may not know what I am or who I am anymore, but I do remember some of the basics. From here, we will see where things go. No rush. No worries. No responsibilities.

But maybe again... the adventure.

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

To Cherish the Past

With my future in game swirling around in circles, I've let most of my accounts lapse until I know what I want to do again. I have plenty of skill points and skills. I can do the things that interest me as well as the stuff that does not but I have been told to learn.

I've been pretty comfortable that way. My stuff is safe in its stations. I'm saving cash every month. Things are good.

And then, six hours before down time and the Citadel launch I clicked on a link for carrier pilots.

It may have been because I was logged in. Whatever it was, I realized that Chella is a carrier pilot. I have a carrier. I have two carriers. Or maybe three? But at least two.

And one has a triage module.

I have given zero thought to the fact that my carrier would become a force auxiliary.

In six hours.

Did I want that? I didn't know.

Did I care? Why yes, yes I did.

With caring came my answer. Snowflake was purchased when I was six months old. I was ambitious. I would learn to do level 5 missions and be a useful member of the corporation. I never learned to do level five missions. I never became a useful carrier pilot for any group I joined. Perfect skills do not mean a thing when you don't have experience and when I might have reached that point, Thanatos were not the carrier of choice. He isn't even fit for anything but a move long ago. I could have remotely repackaged him but those sweet, sweet, large rigs to remind me of the past...

Snowflake, my flat ship with its weird little knobby head had been with me for years. Sure, he was stuck in low sec and would probably never move again. That didn't matter. He was mine. I'd miss his flat weirdness. I never found him to be an attractive ship but that never mattered. He was mine. A symbol of many things that never happened but I wish had.

I activated some game time, logged in Chella and set my course for Snowflake's place of rest.

Then I remembered gatecamps. Smart bombing ones. The things that make little shuttles go poof? Where they still a thing? Had culture shifted to some great extent of late? Could it be that... nope, gatecamps. I scanned zkillboard and saw that my most obvious path was barred.

I rerouted and made a deal. If I died, force auxiliary would I be. If I lived, Snowflake would remain in his birth state. The toss of a gate would decide.

One person... on to the next system.

Three people here... but I'm just passing through.

Twenty-five in system but no camp on the gate I used or the station.


Hello, Sujarento. It's been a while. I doubt I will ever see you again. Thank you for taking care of my carrier.
Love,
-Sug