Thursday, March 6, 2014

Off the Books

"Why do you like low sec?" Anthony asked me.
"Because it's dangerous," was my immediate response
One of the things that drew me to Eve was the open PvP environment. My first multiplayer online game was a MUD with an open world environment. I never played Ultima Online but I suspect I would have enjoyed it. The idea that people could kill me and take my stuff in Eve was exciting. Although things did not quite play out as I envisioned it I still find myself excited by the fact that I can lose things.

With loss comes the methods in which we compensate for loss. New players are often councilled to, "consider it destroyed as soon as it is undocked." This is repeated early and often with the intent to help people through their first loss or two. Few people consider every ship lost. There is a fine line between considering a ship lost and being able to accept that you may lose it. This is reflected more so in high security space. The expectation of loss is decreased but it is still there. It is the reason why I restrict how many goodies I stuff into my freighter. It is the reason why some groups camp the most populated stations and frequently traveled routes.

From rage to acceptance, everyone comes to grips with their loss. Kaeda and I have been discussing it some in chat of late. We share a concept that our combat ships are already disposed assets. For me, once the ship is fit I no longer count it as an asset. If someone asks me how much ISK I have, I state my liquid wealth. I don't list my total gross worth because a lot of it is wrapped up in spaceships and the modules for those spaceships. These are all spaceships that I have purchased and fit with the understanding that they may not redock once they leave the station. This means my entire hangar is dead to me, so to speak.

I do not confuse writing my ships off with 'not wanting that ship anyway'. I'd love for them all to come back home every night. I did pay money for them after all. But I stockpile because I need to prepare for them not to come home. Some of my planning habits may come from my early days in low sec where moving things meant many, many blockade runner runs and the occasional market spree when a jump freighter was coming in. But loss is also an expected, and planned for outcome.

And, for whatever reason, I like that. I don't particularly like when it happens but I adore that it can happen. I love the fact that I am at risk even when I don't particularly want to be at risk. But it isn't my choice and I find that an incredible part of the game.

It may sound fatalistic. But I've had plenty of moments when I've lost my ship and been absolutely pleased with how I handled that situation. I've come to understand that like kill board ranks and ISK efficiency, some people create their personal win metrics by wins and losses. Mine are by how I handled a situation. Personal metrics and all of that.

5 comments:

  1. "It may sound fatalistic. ". Oh, no. Not fatalistic. Sage advice. I have been in WH space for 3 years now and I probably have lost every ship I brought in at some point (correction, not my Ghetto Noctis, a salvaging Catalyst. That thing won't die, no matter how many times I bait with it).

    Wormholes bring the added complication that you can lose absolutely everything in the SMA / CHA. Some invader can take or destroy everything you have in the hole. You live like this, you either go complacent and accumulate way too many ships (I just blogged about someone who did that) or live like us, perpetually out of a tent with a minimum of ships.

    Our new guys are often eager to bring in their prized Tengu or Legion or Marauder. We ask them kindly to consider how they would feel if they lost it on their way into our hole. And then they wisely chose a Drake until their wallet balances.

    Like you, I only consider my cash balance and loyalty points as assets. All else is already lost. And I keep my cash balance so that I can always purchase 2-3 T3s to get myself back on my feet if all is lost.

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  2. I'm never upset about losing ships, however, I do get very upset when I lose one because of my own stupidity - like when I forget to stop overheating modules and burn them out. Now that really upsets me! I can always buy more ships, but I can't always repeat a badly fought fight. Btw, I heard your interview on the Legacy Of A Capsuleer Podcast. I think you handled yourself well - not to mention I think you have a nice voice:-) Good luck with your run at CSM9.

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    1. Aye. There are few things as bad as disappointing myself with a poof performance.

      Thanks for the well wishes :)

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  3. The only time I really hate losing ships is when someone else made a really stupid mistake and caused the loss. If it's my own mistake, I can accept that, but when we've got a fleet going with logi, and the logi ship loads combat drones instead of logi drones so that they can get in on the kills, and then accidentally starts shooting friendly fleet members as well, I can't stand it.

    My biggest annoyance is when someone is playing the role of scout, and falls asleep on the job, is playing another game at the same time, or just forgets to watch, and a huge fleet comes through the system they are scouting in without them knowing.

    All that being said, I do agree that once I've fitted a ship, that ISK is gone. It's an asset in my hangar that I hope I can fly as long as possible, but I accept that on a long enough time line, that ship is gone.

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    1. A good team is amazing. A bad one can really leave a bad taste behind.

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