Friday, April 3, 2015

Musing: Inevitable Change

[TL;DR: I'm thinking out loud to clear my mind.]



The worst part about writing what is on my mind is that I sometimes feel weighed down with very complex and passionate topics that are hard to put into coherent word and thought. I've complained a fair bit that tings have been so serious and restless since Fanfest. I believe that it is the tidal wave of change that we can see on the horizon rushing towards us and we are neatly powerless to stop it.

What do you do when you are powerless to stop something? Some just curl up and accept the inevitable. But many of us try to change what we can change. Even as I write this I find myself falling into a possible answer as to what has been bothering me.

I've wanted to write about the desire that we sometimes have to make other people change. I group myself into this. As open minded and accepting as I try to be I still want people to change. I may want them to be open minded and accepting. I may want them to realize that other's are as productive and happy in the game. I may want things that I see as good but they are things that I want other people to do. If I do not accept that I to want to put pressure and change upon things I will drown in my own hypocrisy.

In many ways we want this tidal wave to come in. We want the destruction and change that it will bring. There are many metaphors to catastrophe cleansing things in literature and legend. Eve is a world. Virtual it may be, but it is a world with rules and laws and age. Perhaps I have been reading to many paranormal stories but they often focus on age and how people change over time. Eve has a very similar situation. The game has aged and the players have aged. We spend a lot of time discussing what Eve is because Eve has grown into something that we can no longer neatly fit into parameters.

It leaves all of us, not just CCP, in a situation where we have begun to pick paths that effect change upon the world.  It is no longer a simple matter of introducing something or changing a single thing. The ripple effect is very real in this virtual world of ours. A moment of thoughtlessness can, when it finally hits, rip devastating holes in the world.

We can't stop the tidal wave. Some of it is CCP for they do run the game and must move it forward. We have circled in a stagnant pool for years now and we have grown used to the taste of it. Now we want change. We crave change. We fear change. We may not want change. There is such a dichotomy of love and hate at the same time that it is dizzying to keep track of where people are.

It makes me think that the desire to make people behave in ways they do not want to do comes from some of this. Some of it just is part of the nature of some people. I am the type who rebels when told what to do. I know that other's have no issue with telling people to do what they say and are comfortable in their feeling of being utterly correct that their view of the way things should go is the right one. If change must happen; direct it.

That may be what has been leaving me frustrated. There is a huge amount of push and pull happening. The tidal wave is starting to darken the sky as it rushes towards us. What is normally a slow dance has increased its pace as, unable to turn it we try to change what we can about the events that will happen.

We're not all going to succeed. The wave is going to hit.

It's an appeal of Eve. It is also an intense thing. A bit of transcendence between the game play and the conflict between the players. CCP Seagull speaks about players outplaying each other but I wonder if we realize how deep and wide it has the potential to go.

10 comments:

  1. "We want the destruction and change that it will bring."

    And then we complain about it when it happens. :)

    Really, you already know the answer to managing change. What you're describing is the traditional managerial change process (Denial, Anger, Confusion, Depression, Crisis, Acceptance). We players are a far looser organization than any pool of office workers, but the change process is probably very similar - we just have a wider range of acceptance timelines and magnitudes of feelings. The secret to navigating it is simply communication (both ways!) and a willingness to accelerate/adapt/defer/scrap/rebuild future plans accordingly.

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  2. Yeah, it's the difference between wanting the tidal wave to hit, and wanting the tidal wave to hit everyone else. Or just those "bad" people over there who play "badly."

    I think the new EVE will be much less certain and somewhat more frightening, especially with the NPCs acting more like players and warping around. But then, I don't play EVE to feel any other way. If I want neatly scripted content scaled comfortably to my level, I can always fire up TESO.

    -Dersen

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  3. Not all of us want to outplay other players though. Should we just quietly exit stage left and save ourselves from that future?

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    1. My impression is that CCP is much more worried about people who'd prefer that gameplay getting isolated from it and leaving than they are about ~forcing~ people to play that way. They know that they have loner players--heck, some of the devs are--and I don't think they're interested in driving them off.

      In a sense, as it is now, you're outplaying other players by succeeding at being left to your own devices. As one low-sec industrialist had it, in a game of cat and mouse there's no shame in being a really good mouse.

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    2. It depends on what you consider outplaying another player. At some point, we are in a game that is occupied by others who have the freedom to do as they wish just as we have the freedom to do as we wish. Then the two come into conflict. We often vocalize this as things like major sov battles but its down on the level of playing with the market.

      To outplay another player is not to force anyone into any particular action. But it does mean that CCP seems more focused on developing Eve the world and giving people the tools.

      So your outplaying may simply be avoiding others to do your own thing. That qualifies as much as anything else does.

      The reason I fight people who say that Eve is this way or Eve is that way.. the reason I fight people who feel that someone who comes into an area of the game MUST participate in a particular way... the reason I push through the ridicule of those who do not like some areas of eve game play is because choice must always be there.

      You can choose to leave. Or, you can choose to figure out how to do what you want to do to have the game that you want to play. But at some point, Eve is a MMO made for people to interact with other people and be in the same world as others. For CCP to promote that aspect of the game is not some strange cruelty or petty meanness.

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    3. Well, if we have all these definitions of what 'outplaying' means, that's great. My concern is what does CCP mean when they say it...

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    4. @Sugar Kyle April 3, 2015 at 12:41 PM

      Oh Sugar, what a wonderful reply. If you haven't already, you may want to consider turning your reply into a distinct post. Just cut and paste it, it's that good.

      Elaborating somewhat tangentially . . . CCP continues ever so carefully stepping away from spoon feeding us content. The new Opportunities NPE , for example, doesn't lead you around by the nose, rather you approach it and it and says, "Figure out how to do X. X can be a useful skill." Along the same lines, recent lore additions weren't spoon fed to us either. Rather, in game changes just appeared leaving in game players to figure out what was happening. Then CCP, being but caretakers of the sandbox, dutifully reported what those players were discovering.

      I suppose for some being told, "Choose your own story" can be a little unsettling but I just don't get the distress.

      Sincerely,
      DireNecessity,
      Small time shrimp excitedly wiggling her legs making wonderful little shrimp waves in our big time ocean.

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  4. As another rebel who just ignores people telling him what to do, I'm with you there.

    Change is good, a stale game is soon a dead game. Also after seeing the game grow from 2013 to today, I feel those changes overall were good, even for people who don't like change. (I still get cramps in my hand just thinking of the menial clickfest of the old industry UI, for example. And I really, really hated the old "one probe at a time"-system for probing.)

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  5. It's your capacity for introspection and honesty that makes you a great CSM.

    It's so rare.

    Here at BRAVE some people are excited about Fozziesov which they claim will make BRAVE a major player and somehow allow us to beat super fleets with subcaps. Our unceremonious eviction from Catch - as if we were a stray moggie someone spotted curled up in their wardrobe -has done nothing to limit their confidence.

    No doubt they're in your future somewhere as outraged forum posters incensed that Fozziesov "failed the little guy." I'll do my best to talk some perspective to them before they reach your notice.

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  6. Sugar, I don't think this is just you, or Eve, or our modern society, but humanity as a whole. When we read about history - particularly the points when the world changes - we tend to view it as a single, monolithic decision or set of decisions that changed it. We look desperately for a single person, event, culture, or tendency that fits into that narrative.

    But, in reality, we all exist in a state of perpetual chaos. The future is a perpetual Schroedinger's cat. People don't strive for the same thing; the future is a result of multiple perspectives... reality comes from the relative strength of various perspectives when that decision moment comes.

    Looking at passionate opinions, hatreds of the "other", and a total mess of opinions conflicts with our narrative of "the inevitable march of history". But all those passionate opinions aren't bad. History is made by the power struggles between different opinions. Hatred of the other side is natural; it comes from conviction that you're right. The process of debating either proves that conviction right (through sound evidence and compelling reason) or wrong (through baseless opinion and myopic thinking). Besides, none of us can or should hold all opinions and view things from a universal perspective... doing so often leads us to say and contribute nothing in the way of strong argument.

    But hatred of the other side is also useful to the whole process. If we each play only a part of the symphony, then we need to play the best part we can... arguing most compellingly for our perspectives. Passionately wishing for the other side to lose drives you to improve your arguments.

    The thing we can never forget, though, is civility. Name calling doesn't help. But hatred in itself is just strong opinion that the other side "winning" is not only wrong, but dangerous and an unfavorable result.

    It's not hatred, but a lack of courtesy, that is the problem. Not supporting one position to the exclusion of others, but not providing reason and logical argumentation, that is the problem.

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