Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Instant Access PvP?

One of the complaints I read today, in a comment on Gevlon's blog was that faster and easier access to PvP would be a good thing. On a similar note, there has also been a suggestion that it has time sinks and you cannot just log onto it and frantically press button and receive PvP. Many people feel that should be fixed and that to give instant PvP will fix Eve when it comes to player retention.

I disagree. While some players may come to Eve for PvP I believe that most come for spaceships. What they do with those spaceships then wanders a long arching pathway and many wind up where they did not expect themselves to be.

The first question is: What is faster access to PvP?

PvP has a human factor. It is frustrating to have someone log in and immediately desire PvP and then state their boredom when they do not receive it. The player is playing against other players. Other players may not wish to be the precipitant of PvP and go through lengths to avoid it. Eve is billed as a PvP game. That label is a bit simplistic. Planetside2 is a PvP game. I log in, click on some world map, fall, and run around and shoot other people. There can be sense and planning but most of the game is hectic running around shooting at people and being shot.

Planetside2 gives you sides. In some games it is just a free-for-all. Log in and shoot everything that is not yourself. I’m assuming from their popularity that many people consider this to be fun. That is fantastic. However, that is not Eve. PvP in Eve is sometimes frantic and overwhelming and sometimes it can’t be found for all the water in the ocean. Eve itself is a game of planning and strategy. Instant magic box of thrills may or may not be on the menu tonight. We won't know until we go looking.

The fastest access often suggested is Arenas where people are waiting to PvP right now! I'm going to ignore the many problems of Arenas and focus on the instant PvP part.

Press button and receive PvP feels like a devaluation of many of Eve’s core principles. Time is an intertwined facet of the game. Decision making cascades into consequences. People often say, “Get rid of the time sinks so that we can have fun!” But would removing the time sinks simply for convince improve the game? Or would it give people a faster access to their goal point with even less planning and decision making?

This is not to be confused by an institute such as RvB. RvB has created an instant PvP environment However, it is a player created situation. Creation of player made environments is a hallmark of Eve. While RvB may give players a fast access to PvP they are still bound by everything else that makes Eve. They have created their own game and opened up for the entire player base that wishes to join in.

I also feel that it is taking away from the planning and search and possibility of not receiving PvP. Not receiving PvP makes receiving PvP all the better. Roaming out and finally getting a fight is an amazing experience. It is not boring. It is not, “Let me skip this arena and go to the next.” Skipping a fight is because one is avoiding a WTFBBQ and that fight may come chasing after you. Just as you do not have a button to make a fight you also do not have a button to leave a fight. I think the two are interconnected.

And then there is the question of want. A player may join eve for PvP. They may then want that PvP all the time. However, a hauler may want the trip from Jita to Rens to be ten jumps instead of thirty. A miner may want an asteroid to have an entire hold full of ore before recycling. A ship builder may want the carrier to pop out of the oven in one day instead of two weeks. Want and should get are not the same thing.

I find myself frustrated with those lacking patience. At one time a four day skill was enough to shatter my mind and activate my need for now. Now a thirty day skill is understood. Its end reward is of immense value to me. When I go to PvP sometimes I have to wait. Sometimes I receive nothing. When I do receive the fight its value is sweeter for the effort that went into it.

Eve is and is not a casual game. One can set a skill and log out knowing the charater can advance. One can also pour time and energy into a goal and be rewarded with it. Sometimes a great reward falls into the players lap with little effort. However, often times that reward has a unseen past of effort that went into creating it.

While there are plenty of situations a player can put themselves into to receive instant PvP, I feel that a mechanics where a player logs in presses a button and is teleported into instant PvP would not only do the game a disservice it would not fix the problem. People would look for the next instant rush to amuse themselves. They would never know the sweet taste of success from stalking a target or executing a beautiful trap. PvP would be a two dimensional situation. Go to mission agent request mission. Go to PvP button and request PvP.

And then there is the door that must remain shut. The door that leads to a 100% safe space in Eve. Button PvP would only loosen the lock of that door. With instant button PvP what need would there be for high sec PvP? Challenge them to the arena and settle it. No kill mails or even better arena kill mails. I'm gagging at the thoughts.

8 comments:

  1. Great stuff sugar, simply great :-)

    ReplyDelete
  2. EVE is not a game for "gimme gimme gimme" kids who are so widespread nowadays. You can't get ISK, you can't get ships, you can't get even a damn guy to shoot at you unless you work for it. Hard to understand for many.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Couldn't agree more to you. Not even in Real life people know what is good for them or whether what they wish for is good for them.

    Calling for "not dump the game down" and wanting "instant pvp" ... that really would dump the game down.

    I play this game for 6 years now and it is because you need to work for what you want. You see an enemy fleet coming along you need to rally your in time to fight them before they are gone or standing right at your front door.

    Want less travel time to pvp? bring your staging system closer to the enemy (but risk it to be taken over sooner).

    Eve is a PvP game sure, but it has its chess flavor that is needed to contain the consequences. Everything you want you need to earn it. If you don't like that, this is not the game you are looking for.

    ReplyDelete
  4. And with this post you just proved to be the best blogger out there.

    Instant gratification is the plague for this new generation of eve players. As the bitter vets leave the game and new players come in, ccp will have to cater for their need of a cheap thrill.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Would making an arena mean people wouldn't chase me anymore? NO! That's what makes running around low sec fun. And I'm not sorry for not just sitting around to pew pew my ships.

    ReplyDelete
  6. There are many ways to include easier-to-get pvp that would not devalue current longer gratification pvp. Simply dismissing a plethora of possibilities out of hand because you set up one version in your head that would have negative consequences is shortsighted. Think outside the (sand) box.! :-)

    ReplyDelete
  7. You just need to run with an organized outfit in Planetside2.

    ReplyDelete