Many times over the last year, and I note with greater frequency, people have suggested NPCs fill in particular tasks in Eve. I, at first thought that this was a random and rare wish. Yet, I've seen it more and more from various places and for different reasons. It is not something I think that I would ever propose. It is not something that I think I want. Seeing it cropping up has left me to at least wish to talk about it.
Perhaps it was the early exposure to missions that left me with the idea that the NPC empires 'hire' the players to do things and not the other way around. It just feels right. I swagger into their office like a bad ass and they thank me for coming and offer to pay me to help with their problem. This seemed to be the natural cycle to me.
But the latest suggestion of Wex and Dire to have NPC escorts for freighters has left me pondering the topic. Not because I am in live with it. I'm not. It is more to find out if this is something people find comfortable. And then, perhaps, what it would do for the game.
NPC convoys? NPC escorts? NPC guards? NPC hauling? NPC mining?
What would it all mean? I find myself at a bit of a loss creatively. This is not a topic near to my own soul.
There are some that will shun the idea. "Get more friends," is a common response to people. I find myself thinking of a merchant hiring a guard instead of maintaining a stable of professional soldiers. There is a chance that I may have been reading a bit too much military based stories of late. Really, I wind up tying myself in a knot. If one shouldn't have to get friends would NPC allies count? I think they'd would but maybe that, again, is just me.
In a way, Teams were a step towards this. It may be a good starting ground to see how people felt about the NPC influence in their day to day activities.
I have so many questions. CCP has worked to remove many things from the NPC hands and give it to the players. it just feels wrong to me to give some of those back to the NPC. Yet, even I cannot fangirl myself out of the fact that Eve has a lot of tedious busy work that is not complex. I've said before that I will not ask others to light my cynos simply because the job is tedious and boring.
Yes? No? Maybe so?