Friday, May 30, 2014

See The Way...

If you could only see the way she loves me 
Then maybe you would understand 
Why I feel this way about our love 
And what I must do 
If you could only see how blue her eyes can be when she says 
When she says she loves me 

In some ways Eve ruins many of us for other games. And while ruin is a strong word it is one I am in the mood to use. It creates a strong enough break that during these discussions over new players and how we can bring them to Eve we have created a hurdle that we need to jump.  We like to say that we are smarter than other players. We like to preen under the gasps and shocks from other gamers when they discover that we are successful in Eve. We rabidly protect the game in its current state and cast others out when we feel the need. And even as we do all of these things we tell them, "If only you could see the way I see this game that I play."

I've discussed before that my husband is not an Eve player. My husband does not want to become an Eve player. There is nothing that could happen to make my husband play Eve because he hates loss in a game. It destroys the game for him. He plays games to escape and relax and loss and complex challenge are things he has to deal with every day. He doesn't like them in his games.

And that leaves us with having to not only figure out how to retain people but how to find people who want to be retained. Every game loses players. Eve will always lose more than most because you lose your stuff in Eve. I don't mean PvP. I mean you lose stuff in Eve.

Every time I look at Eve Gate and its messages, I see a message from someone that I met briefly for a week or two. That message system we don't really use can maintain odd echos of the past. But, this person I met when I was four or five months old at the time. I met this player as I have met many players, in Eve Uni chat.  He was in high sec and I was in low sec. I wasn't settled into being in low sec yet. I was irrelevant in the scheme of things and overwhelmed by the scope of it.  But this player and I talked. We talked and he got himself a Ferox.

At the same time I was skilling into a Hurricane. I had embraced the concept of not flying things that you are not skilled to fly and I thought his Ferox was a bad idea. But he was a high sec miner and he was moving to become a mission runner. I was a low sec something or another. And so, I sat there that day he got and fit out his Ferox. It took hours. He had guides open. He had his modules picked out. He flew from here to there getting the best deals. He had waited and worked for and saved for this day. With his ship together he warped it to his very first level 4 mission and he died. He died pretty damn fast.

I consoled him. I tried to talk it out with him. He was calm. I told him he could fit a new Ferox and try a different mission. I think he died trying to loot his wreck as well. And in the end he said he had worked weeks for that Ferox and it was all gone before he could even blink. He logged off. I've never seen him again. His last message on Eve Gate was seven hundred and seventy four days ago. I just looked. He did not die to a gank. He did not lie in low or null. He died to the game and he left because of his loss.

Some will chuckle. Some will be amused by the classic tale of someone losing their shiny. Someone will probably think I'm saying that Eve shouldn't have loss. What I am saying is that the loss in Eve is what works for many of us. We know it. We talk about the rush from PvP. We discuss how meaningful our events are. Squeaking out of something after almost losing a ship is amazing.

But not for everyone.

It may be for more people than we realize. If we can get them to give it a chance.

I played Age of Wushu a few times. They had a button that you had to click yes for that said this was a PvP environment. Maybe it is that simple instead of being ever so complex. A simple wake up. A conscious agreement.

Could something as simple as a popup reminder work?

Edited for clairity in the last sentence. See comments if curious.

38 comments:

  1. I feel there is room for a series of PSA's on dealing with loss in Eve to sort of pre empt dealing with someone going through the process of a rage quit.

    Quite frankly I'm inclined to believe it would be futile for the vast majority that don't bother to pay attention nor have the intestinal fortitude to tough something out. I mean, in your example, I wonder if the player even had the thought "I've put weeks worth of resources into this and about to try something I've never done before, is this really a good idea? Can I take losing it?".

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    1. The PSA thing is the question. I don't thinkits toughing it out so much as the shock of truly losing something which just doesn't happen Ion most games.

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    2. Then that expectation that loss can (and often will) happen needs to be set, so at the very least someone looking to get into Eve is going to be aware of some of the things that can happen along with prevention and dealing with the aftermath.

      So an introduction video would start with something like: "Welcome to Eve Online, a cold and dark universe filled with the best and worst humanity has to offer. Loss is real here, a ship destroyed is gone forever, as with any dynamic, a world without loss is a world without joy. The extreme highs that can only be made possible by the risk of extreme lows." Or some other flowery poetic bullshit that can be written by someone more eloquent than me that gets the point across.

      If for nothing else than to let newbies know that beyond the loss there are ways of dealing with it, if not preventing it in the first place, that they may not be aware of.

      Delete
  2. It took me a year to get over my risk aversion but also having learned to earn enough isk to replace what I flew helped a lot.
    The progress in Eve is too slow for most people and thus we have what happened to the player in your post.

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    1. Embracing loss is hard. I believe it's one reason the reckless approach is popular. The loss never mattered to have value.

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  3. Some people have this idea that they are so awesome that they just can't lose. When a game is evil enough to tell them otherwise, they quit offended. There is nothing you can do to keep them.

    There is another group on the other hand that you can keep: the carebears. They accept losses as a consequence of fail, they just don't accept losses coming from "mean" players. Give them crayons to let them play by themselves while the others are playing this war game: http://greedygoblin.blogspot.com/2014/05/crayons.html

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    1. I know there isn't anything I can do. But that doesn't mean I don't TRG for those who are more to one side than the other

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  4. Depends what you mean by work. Would it encourage some new subs? Obviously. But take a moment to think about the people you know who you'd lose. Some would go straight away, some drift after a while.when they've been told for the hundredth time 'No, sorry, this person doesn't want to play with you.' But whatever the reason those people, few or many, that are already here and help give the game its current life and colour would be gone.

    The game would lose its soul. Whether its worth it comes down to the math guys I guess but the fact this comes up just after you're nicely settled into your new jobbscares the shit out of my little tinfoiled part of my heart.

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    1. Would it work = A pop up that reminds people Eve is a PvP game. I'll go edit it and dive into my puzzlement about tinfoil.

      Don't tinfoil. I've only settled imto my new job and being curious and writing is hard because of this exact situation. Everything I say means that someone assumes there is some dark secret I'm holding. Frankly it sucks. My own thoughs are trapped because everything I say is magnified.

      There isn't. The last few posts I've written have just been me struggling with thoughts and questions that come forward.

      How do you reach someone to lose? How do we show them the Eve that we love? All of these things are questions that I ask myself. All of these things are answers that I seek.

      The thing is that I don't have the answer to everything or all the questions. I said at the start that others better expect to participate. I was elected but no one that elected me is off the hook. My position is one I was given by the players of Eve and that is why I am here.

      If you see that as tinfoil changing the world I don't know if any amount of argument from me will change that. Or you can accept that I'm the same person that I am with the exact same goals that I always had.

      Delete
    2. In case I sound too rawr! How dare you!

      Always call me out if you think I'm wandering off on the wrong path. Please. I'll explain myself and we can go from there. Sometimes I get caught up in the writing and things don't come across clearly.

      Delete
  5. @Xaeroflex: Agreed both that some player would benefit from training on dealing with loss and that most probably wouldn't be helped. SK is making the good point that we come to this game with a variety of needs and expectations. The funny part is that I am also here to "escape and relax," and that loss isn't really in my definition of fun, either.

    It takes all kinds to build a universe, perhaps, and keeping all of us engaged is certainly more than CCP--or anyone--can handle. If devs ever decide to maximize subs instead of freedom/PvP/ganking/scamming, the game will start to feel different in some fundamental ways.

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  6. I don't think a solution has to be at one extreme or the other -- a big bucket of blood with newbies ritually sacrificed on the Jita undock, or perfumed flower-covered spaceships only allowed to hug each other.

    Likewise, I don't think carebears can so easily be pigeonholed as to what they like, why they play, what improvements they'd want to see, etc. Sure, some may fit the "let me play with my crayons and GTFO of my way" mold, but there are plenty who don't.

    I can totally sympathize with your friend, Sugar, who spent weeks of his leisure time building something he was looking forward to flying, and then losing all of it -- his time, his ISK, and his anticipation of fun -- just like that. It sucks. I haven't lost a ship to missioning in almost 3 years, and that's with running L4s by myself in T1 BCs.

    But I still remember how it felt to lose a ship I'd worked hard for and to have to sell *everything* in every hangar to buy a new cruiser and the cheapest possible modules. Back then, I wasn't working, so I couldn't justify buying PLEX to recover from a total loss. To new players, a cruiser -- certainly a battlecruiser -- is a big deal, and they may be running a shoestring operation as it is. (I couldn't stand the idea of asking my friends for money, either.)

    I don't think we know enough about your friend from reading your story about him to characterize his departure as a ragequit or to drop any other labels on him about his personal maturity or toughness or whatever. He may have decided quite clinically that the risk-reward balance on *his leisure time* when it came to EVE was antithetical to fun. I know more than a few people who've quit out of sheer boredom. Not enough fun per hour.

    I'm glad the community is having this conversation, by the way, and that at least a few CSM members are interested in it. I expect some barbs traded back and forth over playstyles, but hopefully something that will benefit a fairly broad cross-section of players can be gleaned from it.

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  7. Sugar,

    I understand your friends ferox loss, I think alot of us have done that ourselves, work really hard to "level up" to the next ship of our desire and then promptly lose it. Patience is what I have learned from those experiences. In your friends case good advice would have been for him to start 1 level down from what he built his ship for and get comfortable and experienced flying it before moving up and try it in the next level. But never the less he didnt hang around and try again. I dont think that the current discussion on the blogs is really geared towards how do we keep someone like this person playing EVE. I think that as the above comments all point out some people just cant deal with the loss and there is nothing we could do to convince them to stay.

    On the other hand I think that there are alot of unsubs that we could keep and I really dont understand why any discussion on making a "safer", meaning free of asshats taking advantage of them, area gets the violent shout down from the asshats and wannabe's that specifically pray on the newbies. I can tell you from a strictly business perspective I would have this implemented so fast that the EVE communities heads would spin. The content of the "newbie" area would be very basic and not much fun after you get 3-4 weeks into the game, but it would also allow CCP to demonstrate to the new players just how much potential personnal satisfaction can be achieved by a capsuleer. Follow that up with a CCP/Dev/"hand picked capsuleers" run corporation that gives the newbies access to "not safe" highsec but still would some what insulate them while teaching them the ins and outs of corporations, mining fleets, PVE fleets and basic introductions to PVP. They can quit this corp at any time by choice, but once out they can not come back in, and this corp would have a time limit of 2-3 months. Now you have a "newbie" who has invested 3-4 months into the game, may have made some long lasting relationships "important", and has some basic understandings of how TOUGH "EVE" can be or IS. Now turn them out into the rest of the EVE world and with the adage "go forth and conquer everyone".

    Yet this type of proposal gets nothing but the GIANT shoutdown as the current EVE population doesnt see past the next warp gate or CTA much less realize how doubling the current subscribition numbers within EVE will double their opportunities for content. Seems really short sighted to me.

    Sly

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    1. :-) Well, count me in as shouting "Hell, yeah!" to these ideas.

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    2. I'm not trying to save him so much as pointing out that we lose players this way to. Often when we hear player loss stories people laugh at them.

      Not I say work to keep them directly but to look at what causes people to go. I think we need to know what is happening to understand it even if it is okay that it is happening.

      As for the newbie areanits becausenod instancing in my opinion and neutering an area down that hard to keep older players from exploiting it I guess.

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    3. I've endorsed the idea of newb "boot camps" before, and I'll second it here. My feeling is this is something that CCP can and should farm out to the players. That is, have a volunteer part of ISD which is basically small corporations run by one or two players who have agreed to act as mentors/trainers, taking say 20 newbs at a time as a block then advising them and playing with them for a few weeks while they get their legs underneath them.

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    4. Short-term membership boot camp corps run by ISD would be awesome. Not only would it help prepare newbies for the harsh EVE world, it'd be *content*. Sometimes new players aren't too sure what to do first, or next. This'd give them a direction and a place to show up and meet people.

      I'd sign up as a volunteer for that, absolutely.

      Delete
  8. I think your popup idea might be a stroke of genious. From the discussions in other places, I've understood that many people that quit are disappointed not because they lost, but rather because the game doesn't match their expectations. So why not be up front about what kind of game this is from the first login? It doesn't even cost anything.

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    1. I don't think it is a fix as someone else comments on, more a notification that is a bit above and beyond the 'dark harsh world' comments littering the place.

      Delete
  9. EVE was created by guys who played a lot of Ultima Online, guys who want the freedom that game gave the players... right up to the point where the UO devs caved to the cries for 'safe gameplay' and created Trammel... the PvP free server. I have read a lot about how UOs real decline started with the creation of Trammel... (look it up).

    In the past 3 years I have talked to only one person who has said otherwise, only one... he is a good friend, and TBH, quite the carebear (he's not completely risk adverse, he does play EVE, he's just very much a carebear)...

    This is, IMHO the main reason we will never see a 100% 'safe' area or system in the game. The creators of EVE have good reason to be very wary of the consequences of creating real ‘safety’ for the type of game ‘they want to have’... a game with the same freedom they had in UO, real freedom in all forms of gameplay, and most importantly minimally constrained and almost unrestricted player interaction, both positive (fleets, corps & Alliances) and negative (nonconsensual PvP).

    Now I have not read this directly anywhere but what I have read leads me to believe they left or became disillusioned with UO when Trammel was created, as many PvP centric players did... and they will not ever allow that to happen in EVE. They have stated, multiple times, that EVE is a niche game, not a mass market game, they accept that and TBH. I for one am glad they have made it this way and are sticking to their original ideal.

    Now, with all of that said, I do believe we need to keep talking and working, working hard, to find ways to grow the playerbase. I personally believe the best way is through engaging, well crafted and rewarding tutorials that teach about PvP and Loss in EVE... through training, teaching, whatever you want to call it, we need to TEACH our nubbins that EVE is not Your Granddads MMO... That the fact that Loss IS real can make it so much better, have so much deeper meaning and value because loss, and in the corollary, creation and achievement, have greater meaning and value when they are not permanent.

    But we also have to accept that due to this, there are one helluvalotta Themepark players out there who simply are never gonna accept that they can actually lose they 'shineys'... What we need to work hard at is reaching those who can accept ‘loss is real’ and find, as we have, the value in that type of gameplay.

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    1. What would you think of CONCORD also podding in 0.9-1.0? Maybe along with a 24-hour cool-down? It still wouldn't be a *safe* system, but the lather-rinse-repeat suicide ganking marathons wouldn't be as simple.

      I think that stuff breaks immersion. If you're in a really high security place where heads of state and industry are gathered -- the EVE equivalent of the Davos meeting, for example -- you might get one shot off, but the best security ninjas in the world would be all over you after that. You couldn't keep being a gnat all night.

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    2. @Suzariel
      Agreed, I too want to see more real world cause n effect in our verse... The idea that you can kill someone, and wait a few minutes and go right back out is, TBH, a bit ridiculous. The idea that as the day wears on and your kills rack up, that the local constabulary, mush less CONCORD, just ignore your repeat offenses is also, quite ridiculous... I really do feel CCP should be looking at this from a more 'real world' stance... IE what would happen IRL under these circumstances?

      But my GODS would the tears of rage, the breast beating and crying from the griefers be just STUNNING doncha think? =]

      If Loss is Real... Risk vs Reward says the 'Cost' should also be Real. (oh my.... that's my new tag line!)

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    3. @Tur
      I do not want to make a permanet safe place for the WOW humptydumpty's to come and hang out in EVE :) I do think that we agree that a newbie needs a bit more care and feeding than 'throwing him into the deep end" for the 90% who dont come back after their first 2 weeks of constant podding. Also as Suzariel makes plain above there needs to be some very real very violent responses from CCP if you mess around in 1.0 or 0.9 space including podding. I for one think that would be grand as well as a 24hr 1.0-0.9 ban, but i would limit that to the newly minted EVE members say 90days young or such, that leaves the game play as is for the rest of EVE and doesnt create the "safe" space like UO that killed that game.

      Sly

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    4. Enter the idea I've been rolling around in my head lately of insurance payments made as a result of an event subject to a CONCORD response coming out of the wallet of the toon(s) that were the target of CONCORD, including (and this is critical) pushing their wallets into the negative. Wanna gank repeatedly? There's nothing stopping you mashing that F1 key... but be prepared to pay for a portion of the damage, be sure it's going to be profitable, or go through the hassle of biomassing and re-creating alts a LOT more often.

      Because right now, being a bad guy doesn't have any real, lasting consequences.

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    5. Interesting thought. IRL, those convicted of crimes often have to pay reparations.

      The way ganks work now is too cartoonish, IMO. Breaks immersion.

      Delete
  10. Sugar Kyle,

    Two things:

    1) You’re an excellent writer but you need to slow down a little. Numerous distracting typos are creeping into your posts and they make things difficult to follow.

    For example: “I had embraced the concept of not flying things that you are skilled to fly and I thought his Ferox was a bad idea.” I’m sure you meant “*not* properly skilled”.

    Another example: “I think he died trying to look his wreck as well.” I’m sure you meant “*loot* his wreck”.

    My apologies for publically calling you out on mere typos but you need to understand that this is a really good post, it could well be read by a lot of people and, accordingly, needs to be in tip top shape.

    2) Eve is bittersweet. Loss, as you point out so well, is central to the game. Your Ferox pilot lost his battlecruiser and you, you lost your Ferox pilot. I’m familiar with the feeling . . .

    The eyes behind the Dire grow misty.

    Ahhh, my first PvP engagement. T’was long ago and not on this toon. I’d taken my arty fit Thrasher out to low sec for a little rat stomping. It paid surprisingly well and I went unnoticed for several days. When my pirate found me he brought his Amarr Crusader in fast and tight and proceeded to dispatch me without breaking a sweat. Post engagement, once I got my head screwed back on straight, I chatted him up via private convo. Cheery fellow and absolutely delighted to discover he’d grasped the honor to pop my pvp cherry. I kept track of him for quite a while but alas he went inactive. I miss him. Knowing we wandered the same universe filled me with delight.

    I’m not convinced that there’s any way to truly prepare a player for the types of loss they will experience in Eve. The conundrum at the heart of the matter is that, in Eve, you will lose things that matter to you. The very fact that they matter is what makes the loss genuine. At the same time, one rarely knows just how much something matters until it’s gone. I didn’t know I’d miss my pirate until he was gone. You didn’t know you’d miss your Ferox pilot until he was gone. He didn’t know he’d miss his battlecruiser until it was gone. Eve’s losses have to be experienced to be understood. No popup changes that.

    DireNecessity

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    1. It's fine. If things are wrong they are wrong. What doesn't distract me distracts others. At the same time if it doesn't distract me I won't know it distracts others unless told.

      The excuse part is that I'm off on vacation. I'll be home next week so I expect that things will neaten up when I'm at my setup vs typing from a couch onto a coffee table.

      And the comment part is a simple agreement. There may not be an answer to some questions. But that may also be an answer.

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    2. Uh Dire...
      First, as someone who oft writes a wee bit colloquially as 'twere, I personally hate grammer nazis... just saying.

      Second, I strongly agree, and yet disagree...
      Yes, Loss is Real and this is central to the experience that is EVE... however I do not believe that there is no good way to teach this. That you can't get it until it happens to you out of the black at the smoking end of a player's guns and to the tune of his hideous laughter in local.

      I can think of several ways, mishes, tutorials or both, that a new player can be eased into the idea that Loss is Real.

      Try this on for size...
      I propose an advanced mission, the player is 'given' a pre-fitted frigate (something he has already skilled past and could afford anyway) because during the mish, he WILL lose it... mebbe more than once.

      The mish params are setup so he initially can't win, (IE sort of a low grade concordokken) but, and this is important, not to the mission rats... to "other" rats, "griefer rats" that fly ships n fits like players and fight like players. IE rats that are mission griefers, ninja salvagers, can flippers. etc. The mission briefing warns the new player about this in no uncertain terms.

      After the initial loss he has to buy n fit a similar frig from his own pocket (the agent would also ask if he had enough ISK to cover the loss, if not it would 'lend' (give) him the ISK)... he is again warned "They know you are working for us, be careful out there." For the second run the mission params are lowered to 80% difficulty, and he stands a very high chance of losing the second ship too.

      If he losses the secind ship (almost a given), the agent again kindly assists and he goes back out... but this time, the new player
      (1) having now run it a few times is better prepared plus
      (2) the agent now gives him a key piece of intel (IE kill "x" ship or structure first or some such) and doing that resets the mish difficulty back to its std level.

      In other words CCP needs to create a methodology for having a new player experience Loss is Real under controlled conditions FIRST before he is unceremoniously dumped into the black with nothing more than a rudimentary knowledge of how his ship and mods work and no frakkin idea at all how WE do.

      Will this fix everything? Will this cause droves of the 40% to stay and some of the 50% to reconsider? Doubt it... but I do believe it would have mebbe changed that guys feelings about the loss of his Ferox... if so, that would be nothing but a good thing for us all.

      @Sugar
      You just keep on keepin' on sister... yer doin jus fine in my book!

      Delete
    3. @ TurAmarth ElRandir

      To be fair, I wasn’t hassling Sugar Kyle about grammar I was hassling her about typos. The criticism was intended to be constructive and I believe it was understood as such. I thought the criticism worth mentioning precisely because her post is a stunningly thoughtful meditation on loss. That she could draw such meditation out of a space pixel game is evidence of great writing skill. One shouldn’t squander such skills by neglecting to proof read.

      Now unlike you, I’m not “just saying” this. No, I’m disputing your characterization for a purpose. You’re missing the point TurAmarth ElRandir. You truly are.

      While there’s nothing wrong with your suggested training mission I can confidently tell you as a once upon a time just barely post noob dedicated mish runner that nothing in your training mission would have felt like *genuine loss* to me. Rather, it would feel like *excessive expense*. It very possibly could have prepared me for “Eve can be hard” but it would not have prepared me for “Eve can be heart breaking.”

      You’re treating genuine loss as an engineering problem TurAmarth ElRandir. Meanwhile, our gracious host Sugar Kyle is treating genuine loss as a poet.

      DireNecessity

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    4. Dire,
      Grammer, spelling, punctuation... nothing personal man, I like your comments and take on things, OK? but I just dislike anyone pointing out the (1) obvious and (2) who cares? Question, dija unnerstan what she meant? Yea, you did so the rest is, IMHO, nitpicky. But, we all have our nits to pick, yours is laying your ideals of grammar and spelling on others... ol' Mrs. Grundy does the same erryday. To me, Sugar hasn't "squandered" anything bro... so which of us is moar right? Neither… anyhoo, that’s the last Ima say on that ok?

      On the Loss is Real as re Retention Issue, you know what, you refuted yourself in your last line, ...treating genuine loss as an engineering problem TurAmarth ElRandir. Meanwhile, our gracious host Sugar Kyle is treating genuine loss as a poet.

      ...uh huh... really? You see as an IT professional of 17 years, it has been my understanding that professional game developers don't write code in iambic pentameter... and strangely enough, they are also, professionally, called Software "Engineers". I'm not missing anything Dire, I do wonder at your take on this though... Granted poetic license is all well and good and I love a snappy turn of phrase as much as the next guy... but the issue we face IS an engineering/human interface & learning issue in simple point of fact. Yea, I'm treating Loss as an engineering problem, ‘cause it’s a computer game.

      And as also a once upon a time noob (come on man, do you know anyone who wasn't?) however I can tell you that if I had not had 4 things going for me when I was but a nubbins my noobhood may have gone quite differently...

      (1) Two of my older sons were already a year ingame so I had built in support. Keep in mind they threw me 10m ISK and told me, "Go do the tutorials... ALL of them THEN call us" better advise I could not have received at the time.

      (2) as an adult of 50, I was well prepared to take nothing and no one at face value. I questioned and googled ALL THE THINGS before jumping the next gate and...

      (3) I was very very lucky. The first few guys who killed me were of that fantastic breed of PvPer... the ones who don't grief and who don’t believe in trolling a noob.
      They reached out and took me aside, answered questions and offered assistance... one even replaced my Rifter, gave back my drops and replaced my destroyed mods, another killed 3 of us when we first created our corp, and became one of the strongest friendships we have had in the game.

      (4) I was an FPS player back in the heyday of Doom and Quake... but never once had I found an MMO I could stand for more than a week... ALL of them, and I tried a LOT... every single one bored me to tears in a few days.

      So as you can see when I joined EVE I had support and no preconceptions, no Themepark expectations... I was an MMO tabula rasa... therefore I was not disappointed, I never felt 'betrayed' by the game, or the players, when I lost ships. Loss is Real in Real Life, it made perfect sense to me that this would hold true in a virtuality.

      So my personal noobhood was a bit of a silver spoon kinda thing… Come to think of it, mebbe I should be the one waxing a wee poetic huh? Problem is, I want to try and offer workable options that might actually make things a little better for the cute little pod gooey things in those first formative weeks and months.

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    5. My, my TurAmarth ElRandir, aren’t you just drenched in sarcasm. Did I touch a nerve? Writing quality may not matter much to you but I’m confident it matters to our award winning host Sugar Kyle:
      https://forums.eveonline.com/default.aspx?g=posts&t=189749
      &
      http://podandplanetyc115.blogspot.com/

      But we digress . . .

      Like our host, I too have been pondering just what it means to adore a game where navigating loss, pain and grief is so central. Unlike you, I’m unconvinced that successfully bringing new players into this curious universe of ours is mostly a matter of better tutorial mission design and/or suitable public service announcements. Simulations, no matter how intricate, remain simulations. Sometimes you really have to go there to know there.

      I find it revealing that in your response you mention a support network (2 sons), personal maturity (50 years of age) and luck (helpful opponents) preparing your way to Eve success. All wonderful things. None a wiz-bang training simulation.

      I can be no clearer than this and will belabor the point no longer.

      The last word victory I leave to you.

      DireNecessity

      Delete
    6. I don't think your mission would work out TurAmath.
      Loss in eve is not the ship you loose, not the ISK you loose, not the modules. The loss is the time spent gathering those items, and the anticipation before you bought the stuff you wanted with your hard earned ISK. And i think the thought that a player has to start over from scratch because of 1 mistake is that kills the game for so many so early.

      I don't think a mission can teach players to accept/handle that kind of loss in the game. A player is prepared to that or not. He has buddies in game to get through it or not. I think it is that simple.

      IMHO the only thing we can do to help the new players to stick with EVE is to help them in every way to find a suitable social environment for each of them in the game.

      Delete
  11. Just a random story:

    Recently, I've started a new account after the Humble Bundle deal. I've spent much time away from the game, and so I've needed to ask stuff at the new players chat.

    As a result of my questions, I've been convoed three times, and two of those private chats triggered all my veteran spider senses.

    Now think of it: in just 5 days, my "false noob" has been targetted by griefers twice, by as much as opening his mouth at the new players help channel, and right under the noses of ISDs.

    Welcome home, boy...

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    Replies
    1. What did they offer or was it your spidy sense?

      Delete
    2. I think you've kinda nailed a key issue here, this is as close to literally eating our young as you can get in an MMO. It needs to be stamped out really, really hard. Anyone that thinks scamming someone so new to the game is somehow fun or rewarding is (Not gonna sugar coat it) a pathetic piece of shit. There is no way to justify that kind of action, yet it continues to happen.

      Delete
    3. "What did they offer or was it your spidy sense?"

      Well, I failed to apply the Prototype Cerebral Accelerator on my new toon (last time I was a noob, we still had Learning skills), and asked whether I could use it later or it was only usable the first 14 days. A few suggested that, having wasted 3 days of it, I could just contract it out for nice monies. Then someone convoed me and offered me to set up a nice contract for me, conveniently close to my system. I pictured myself flying 150 million worth of stuff in a noob ship to a known place suggested by a stranger and answered that I would keep the item for another char...

      The second one convoed me to suggest me where to find Kernite in Minmatarr space. As I've been mostly an Amarr, I recalled that Kernite is available only in Amarran hisec and so the guy was essentially telling me to go lowsec in search for the mexallon I needed for a tutorial agent... griefer or fool? Dunno, but I just looked for Plagioclase instead.

      BTW: mineral info should tell what ores produce them, specially as the NPE is going to send every noob in a quest for thousands of units of mexallon...

      Delete
  12. I like your popup message idea. It could come with a check box saying "Do not show again," so people have the option whether or not they are reminded they can lose their stuff.

    What about having a channel MOTD for the NPC rookie corp chats set to Rule #1?

    ReplyDelete
  13. As the saying goes a picture is worth a 1000 words, so how about a video, showing off a fresh pod pilot on his first few weeks in the game. But we have 2 paths shown.
    The first part of the video is about a loner, who plays alone, still in an NPC corp, only feeding himeslf the wisdom of the internet about EVE.
    The second part is about the social type, reflecting on the power of the group play and player run corporations. Where his corp mates help him throughout his/her time in EVE.

    The loner part:
    First doing the tutorial(some memorable moments of it), then he goes to misson, tries mining, and so on, his wallet is ticking up, he then buys a shiny ship, and goes into a misson and looses it. His wallet is near 0, he hasn't got too much stuff left, sold most of is things to get the shiney. He did this all alone, maybe had some conversations on the road, read all the info on wiki-s and forums, blogs also shown in the video. All this is geared towards showing the weight of the loss of this kind and the loneliness of the player.

    The group player:
    It starts the same as the Loner part: First doing the tutorial(some memorable moments of it), then he goes to misson, tries mining, and so on, his wallet is ticking up. But as soon as he is done with the tutorials he starts searching for a corp, or finds some good guys on the NPC corp chat, and they form a corp, etc. He then buys a shiny ship, and goes into a misson and looses it. His wallet is near 0, he hasn't got too much stuff left, sold most of is things to get the shiney. But he got good advice, from corp mates, or just help in the form of getting his loot out of the site, and some ISK to start again, in a friendly environment. All this is geared towards to show that loss is still real, but if you have a corp to help you, the loss is not that heavy.

    Or use any of the usual suspects that drive away the new players, like a pvp loss in low, a gank at a stargate or station or belt, or a scam, etc. whatever works best. And make it short!:) Like a promotional video or commercial.

    ReplyDelete