Thursday, October 15, 2015

Conflicted

Halycon said it quite well in a comment he left about the skill point trading proposal for skill point changes. He is conflicted in many different ways.

So am I.

Somedays, I don't want to be open minded. I do not want to see other points of view. I want to not like things and not feel good about them and it be okay. That is something that is denied me for now. I've stated my opinion about the first round of proposals to trade skills.

I don't like them.

That isn't good enough. I have to answer why. Others do not like it as well. I cannot escape over to their side and be unhappy with them. I am dragged away and challenged about my distaste.  Some of the people I like most think the change is good. Other's think it has little meaning. They want to know why I don't like it.

When this was proposed at the CSM summit, I swiveled my chair and asked if they realized that they were undoing the basic structure that characters and game progression worked under. They said that they did. I tried to wrap my head around it. Things would change, meanings would be different, and a shift that feels gradual but enormous would happen and it would carry with it changes that we could not foresee.

I guess I am an old, and bitter person. I enter into games expecting to not have much. I then putter around gathering resources or experience, leveling up as I see fit. I've discussed often that I am not a min/maxer. I am not competitive. I don't care about winning. I figure someone will always be better than I am and I do not compare myself to them. I don't expect to enter a game and have instant access to everything in it.

Maybe, I am too old fashioned for this change. I have seen a steady progression of belief from various players that someone should enter into Eve and instantly be competitive. I don't understand why this is but it exists. I do understand some of the fundamental basics attached to this. Eve has long, long points where we lose players because their next marked point of progression is weeks away. There are other points of progression that they can obtain but those are not going to have the tangible results of Aura saying, "Skill training completed," or entering a new ship.

I know that something needs to change because players have changed and we lose them because the intangible nature of Eve is hard to grasp and for some it is not fun.

Maybe my confusion exists down in the layers of myself that have caused me to create the little niches and adventures in the game. I've failed at being a corp mate that brings value to their corporation. I've not become particularly rich nor am I suitably poor. My skills are not special in any way nor have I created a great space empire. It may be that I am flawed and grasp the familiar because it feels good and safe.

But, I don't care for the change. Yet, tasked within my distaste is the fact that my distaste doesn't matter. I'm one person with one opinion and have a responsibility that is greater than my own self interest. As the discussion has continued about these changes I have tried to be constructive and productive. If this is going to come, let me do the best for it that I can.

One of the strongest things about this is that the skill points are not made out of thin air. The time has gained a tangible value. One that can be traded between characters. I could start to enter into the uses for it. The big, structured groups will be able to set up their new players in brilliant fashion. There will always be those newbies who like me will just scrape their way through the game. I don't think that will go away.

But, I do not believe that characters will be the same. And maybe that is me, with my hand pressed against a dusty glass staring at my avatar's closed eyes. Maybe I am the only one that feels so strongly about my individual character and everything that they mean. Because, in this new world, character meaning will change. I'm told I am supposed to accept that because there has always been the bazaar. That feeling of stepping into someone else's body never pulled me in. My failings and my faults have been my own. They are what I am and the full sum of me.

There is still no love from me at the idea of this change. I struggle to see how the value will not be so skewed by the economy that we love and hate. In that, it will be like the bazaar. I do not think this change is for newbies. Not the newbies that I have taken under my wing and tried to help get started. But, perhaps there is a greater number than I know waiting to be allowed to fly as they sip deeply of well of unallocation.  After all, I have read accusations of bitterness and not being flexable, of wishing to deny others things and standing upon a pedestal of experience to sneer down at newer players because they cannot catch up as time. It seems I am this person. Stuck, nonsensical, and bitter in their hatred for change. I did not think so of myself before but I have read that as what I am today. What a bitter cup is scorn.

In this proposal, time is monetized in a larger, more accessible way. Some say it is no change. Other's only wait for the day.

So, I will try to listen and hear what I can hear. I will try to understand points that make little sense to me. I will not fall into a frothing range. After all, my own reaction is so blurred and mixed that I cannot define it. I struggle with an overwhelming sense of wrongness that others I have spoken to do not share.  But no matter what lays in the path of emotion, the true goal is to gather reaction, thought, and consideration.

73 comments:

  1. You could resign your position in disgust.
    Though that'd disbarr you from doing the kind of good you do right now in the future.
    I dislike the idea proposed in the dev blog, entirely. I feel like I've been slapped in the face

    Don't resign, we need people like you

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    1. Wasn't going to resign. I am just selfish today and want to cleanly dislike what I dislike because I dislike it.

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    2. "Eve has long, long points where we lose players because their next marked point of progression is weeks away."

      And, IMHO, those people are not EVE players. They are, for the most part, very much like my 12 and 13 yo kids... they are, to a degree, juvenile (IE not 'mature') and want EVERYTHING handed to them... and they want it NOW.

      These are exactly the players I do NOT want to play with... EVE players tend to be older or at least more mature than the norm. They appreciate the long term game, they understand and value "investment"...

      If CCP continues on this path... "...undoing the basic structure that characters and game progression worked under." then we will have, in the end... WoW in Space. Until this very moment in all my blogging and my 5 years in EVE I have NEVER said that in earnest....

      Now I am. If CCP continues to make EVE "easy" for new players at the expense of the original goals and idea that was EVE and at the expense of all that older players have invested in this game... then EVE Online will, one day, be nothing more than a WoW in Space Themepark.

      But, considering I logged on last night in the middle of US Prime Time and there were barely 17K users online... it could be that CCP has no choice financially but to make EVE into EVE of Warcraft... damn sad...

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    3. If I was in your shoes, this amount of disgust is reason enough to resign.
      I respect your stance:
      "I'm one person with one opinion and have a responsibility that is greater than my own self interest"
      However in the end you are an unpaid consultant, and what will you have to show for 2 years of hard work ?
      The Company disrespecting your capsuleer ideology concerning characters and game progression.
      You are not too old fashioned for this change, Eve Online used to be a game that had consequences from the Journey you made in New Eden.

      Just because Kil2, aka CCP Rise, bought a character that had a scarlet letter attached to his purchase, with skill points in areas he didn't want.
      Doesn't mean we have to change to whole f-ing fundamentals of this game, and add company exploitation of their customers skill training time with the sale of Plex for aurum for trans neural packets.

      You have a right to be disgusted, and a right to walk away from this Bullshit.

      Regards, a Freelancer

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  2. "I do not believe that characters will be the same" That is probably the sticking point for me as well. It is somewhat like cheating in some ways - although I felt like that with PLEX when it was first introduced, and now it no longer phases me.

    I can see some people will use this mechanism to remove SP from skills they don't like (mining / industry for many PVP types) and then repurpose them on the same character. That kind of works in my mind. You might do it on an Alt you are going to biomass, and move those SP to another Alt. That is on the slippery slope, but not entirely offensive. The idea of just having a character lose 500K SP or gain it without personally spending the time... is odd.

    I've really felt the long skill training queues took a little bit of soul out of the game. While I love them / find them useful, you end up not paying attention to the skills you learn. This change might also take a little bit more of the soul of the game away. It is however hard to define.

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  3. Well screw it, why not just have toons level up with a level cap like everything else.

    While we're at it we could give the top percentage of players with the most isk a very shiny hat.

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    1. Eggzactly... We should ALL be Special Snowflakes, cause... you know, then we'd ALL be exactly the same.

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  4. I share your dislike. Eve, to me at least, was about the journey not the destination. While that can still be true, the opportunity to just purchase your way through that part of Eve will trivialise that particular experience.

    And now the questions...If this proposition must happen, why can't we just buy fully trained skill books from the market or store rather than be NPC seeded? Skill points would be an unnecessary redundancy marking the passage of time, but the need for that has now been circumvented. I also doubt there will be a need for chars from the bazaar in future either. It will be quicker and more efficient to make your own. So why preserve it?

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    1. Why can't we reprocess corpses into very small amounts of un-allocated skill points, since we are talking about brain tissue grafts.
      source: http://crossingzebras.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/04/Brain.jpg

      To the victor the spoils right, and there is no clearer victory then Death.

      Regards, a Freelancer

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  5. I've grown all the toons on my accounts myself and don't forsee buying toons or SP any time soon in the future, but I like this change. The key implementation detail is the diminishing returns for older toons (otherwise I would be completely against it). The other reason it works in EVE is because in many situations SP alone is not enough to compensate for lack for actual skills or experience.

    I also like it because it mixes things up in space. So far, roaming around if you see an old toon, it could have a lot of SP or very little, depending on it was subbed. But a young toon is guaranteed to have an upper limit on its SP, and that advertises easy gank kill to everyone, which can be frustrating for newbros I imagine. With SP trading, that will be less the case.

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    1. The only thing I would want is for KMs to show SP. So when some silly newbro loses their deadspace fit whatever with newly purchased 30 mill SP, because they still don't know how to actually play, it will be double entertaining.

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  6. this change is shit

    and i understand your bitter

    might even let my accs lapse over this


    eve is a wonderful game but i believe everybody in the end ends up hating it ( happened to so many friends over the years,and now finally i think i am getting there )

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    1. I'm planning to visit Star Trek Online after the Season 11: New Dawn (October 27, 2015)
      The space ship combat FX and sounds are amazing, pew pew :)

      Regards, a Freelancer

      PS: Vote with your Wallet, it's not what you say but do that matter to CCP

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  7. I guess that some people want to take the RPG out of MMORPG. I know that a lot of veterans don't like new players because they can't fly doctrine ships. Now they can pressure new players not only into following a specific skill plan, but into ripping skills out of player's heads as well. It used to be that what you learned was yours to keep (as long as you remembered to update your clone). Now? Not so much.

    Let's just say this is another reason not to join a null sec alliance.

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    1. wow, that's a pretty big and jaded leap.

      You could have at least followed it up with grrr goons or blame this on Mittens.

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    2. BeBopAreBop RhubarbPieOctober 18, 2015 at 3:38 PM

      Having been in a few null sec alliances and never goons, I share NoizyGamer's opinion.

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  8. Here's what I can tell you about people wanting newbies to be competitive at day one. And it's an issue with overlap on another larger issue. Eve is too damn slow. Everywhere. From skill progression to finding "content" to fleeting up, to getting anywhere. Eve is too slow. It's an absolute relic from another era. No one designs games with a burn rate like Eve anymore. And for good reason, people get bored and leave. I have lost count of the number of times I've been on teamspeak and heard people say they're playing another game while waiting for someone to tell them something is happening on Eve. It has no minute to minute or even hour to hour content, only day to day sized content. And in this day in age if people are playing something else while waiting for anything to happen in your game, you're dead in the water. That's a missed opportunity.

    I'm not saying Eve needs to be a fast paced twitch game, but it needs something, anything, to fill the gap pushing players to other things. For years now I've wanted a lobby based "VR" Tourny style game inside Eve where the SP are at parity for everyone, pay a fee, choose a ship, go fight, maybe loose the isk I put up, maybe gain it. Whatever. And it's been shouted down by the entire playerbase who's off playing another game while waiting for something to happen in Eve.

    And maybe it is a bad idea, I'm open to the idea I'm completely off base with it. But something, somewhere, needs to change or everything else will just keep eating Eve's lunch because it's just too slow to keep even committed long term players interested in it unless something big is happening.

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    1. When visiting Evesterdam, I had the opportunity to try out Eve Valkyrie several times.
      I'm not impressed with the "VR" gimmick, you are essentially wearing a brick in front of you face.
      source: http://i.ytimg.com/vi/qP5EV9sDETs/maxresdefault.jpg

      However, after having tried it a few times, something struck me as an amazing opportunity for Eve Online.
      It was the first time you had proper control of your spaceship with a console controller and could even do old skool formation flights.
      If CCP could do more then wasd manual control and provide console controller support to direct your flight movements, that would be sweet.

      Regards, a Freelancer

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    2. I didn't mean actual VR. I meant a game in a game VR.

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  9. As I type, DireNecessity clocks in at slightly over 113 million skill points. Currently I can bundle her whole and toss her to the bazaar. In the future I may be able to carve her up and sell her off piecemeal. Do I plan to do either? Certainly not. Does the ability to do either change the connection I have with Dire? No not really. Dire and I, we have a six year history together. It’s that history I value, not the number of skill points she’s patiently acquired. I’ve other alts of nearly the same age with vastly fewer skill points and, for the same long history reasons, I won’t toss or carve them up either.

    Will being able to assemble a Dire2 via ISK market purchases make Dire1 any less valuable to me? I don’t believe so. Despite Dire2’s astounding expense (113 million skill points is gonna cost a whole lot of ISK), she’ll lack Dire1’s six year history head start. History like that isn't overcome easily.

    My characters have never felt like commodities to be bought and sold despite the ability to do so from day one. Enhancing commoditization opportunities won’t change that for me.

    So I sorta shrug my shoulders and “Meh.” That said, creating a market that *cannibalizes* Capsuleer knowledge has every bit the disturbing, dark, dystopian feeling I’ve been swimming in these last 6 years so my hat’s off to CCP for thinking up a way to enable skill point purchasing that feels very Eveish. I can already picture players setting up memory farms where their little avatars train away on min/maxed skill acquisition plans only to have the mind surgeon dance through the ward on regular schedule and snip those memories out. ::shiver::

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    1. Being a guy who mostly does industry and market now days, I was creating a mental chart of break even points for such a farm as I read that devblog. I may be ethically conflicted about it, but being an Eve player... I'll make Isk off it if I can. :)

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    2. Dire.... you are just flat out weird. =\

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  10. I both like and dislike what was presented in the blog post.

    I like the idea of moving the character market into the game, let us pay for these fees with Aurum and such in game.
    I have multiple accounts, and I am selling characters off my alt accounts so I can shut them down for good, because I really don't need them any more. I make enough for my subscription payments to mean very little and I'd rather spend time doing something fun than earning PLEX. Still I'd rather not banish my characters to unsubbed accounts or biomass, others can use them and go far.

    That said, I sincerely dislike the thought of the TSP.

    The 'wasted skillpoints' on my character's paint pictures and stories about thier histories. The 4M in mining on my main is due to her starting out as a miner, working her way into flying a barge, then using that income to work her way into missioning. From there corp management, followed by scanning and industry. She dabbled into Ewar, then broke out into some trading and hauling. She's currently finished with all Leadership skills and working on flying most every sub-battlecruiser at VI+ as she can already fly every Frigate and Battlecruiser at V. And right now I'm solo in highsec running L1-2's and exploring.
    If I used a TSP to jetcan the Mining skills, then I wouldn't be able to jump in a barge and mine any more if I suddenly got the urge to do so.

    Plus, how would skill dependencies work? I know before I started training them up, I had Battleship skills and no Destroyer ones, but that's because they changed the skill dependencies. You only need the main skill to use something, not all it's prerequisites. A salvager without scanning, a Command ship without Leadership, Cruisers missing Frigate training. Mission runners could jetcan the smaller ship skills and then regret it later as it locks them into one task.
    Also people would set up accounts for this kind of thing, and then never undock. I'm not a pvp guy, but yeah, I have issues with that kind of thing.

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    1. I'm pretty sure you could just keep the wasted skillpoints. Keep your pictures and your history.

      For me, ships paint the picture, I have ships in station all over the place. Leftover assets from various deployments. Times in different alliances. I've always been able to sell them. But I don't. They are relics from a previous time.

      I understand how you feel about your skillpoints. I don't understand what it has to do with allowing others to trade their unwanted skillpoints.

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    2. I can see we play two different games Gavin. Both in the same universe. I love that about EVE.

      To answer your question shortly:

      I cherish my characters, I know the time and effort it took to get them and myself to where they are. For me there's always, always been a gratifying sense of accomplishment when a skill finishes training up a level. Be it a skill I use rarely or all the time, it doesn't matter, I get the same satisfaction. Unallocated skill points have always been a bit of a mixed blessing for me, I like to get the skills now/sooner, but I don't feel as much of that sense of accomplishment when I use them.

      But one of the things I see here is also a terrible situation I've seen before. Pay to win syndrome.
      A young newbie will sit down, invest money in PLEX to buy and skill their way into a ship without taking the time to experience the sensation of earning it. There's a good chance they will either spend more and more until they become like those idiots who fell for Star Citizen, or they become disenchanted and walk away anyway.

      Still if it comes in, it will. I doubt I could personally stop it, I just hope it won't destroy Eve as It's been my home for a third of my life.

      Anyways, fly safe or die gloriously Gavin.

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  11. I understand why CCP have considered this.

    But it does defeat Risk vs Reward. For there to be Risk, you need to front investment. Skill Training is; researching the reward, Cost of the skill and time to train. Which equals investment to me. That I can open my wallet, and circumvent all of that - gives me total reward.

    Plus, Eve players have clearly demonstrated creativity when it comes to discovering something completed unintended in the features of Eve. I foresee that it is a can of worms waiting to spring open.

    Plus (dons the tinfoil) the Goon forum warriors are supporting this. That should sound a Nuclear Alarm Siren. Requiring from CCP total glasnost about why this benefits Eve. I don't care even it could be a bluff from the Goons. The safety play would be a solid no. (still with Siren)

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  12. I can understand your frustration. I really can. One one side I can see how this will be thought of as cheapening eve. But I don't think it will. I see no difference between buying sp and buying a new character. Just less bulky and I don't have do deal with wearing someone else's Avatar who's history I didn't earn. A lot of newbs don't actually bother with the character bazaar, and potentially how CCP handles it, this will be something helpful but I don't think it will be a staple. Main reason is most newbs won't have the kind of capital to spend it on sp. This kind of change will help people like me more than anyone else. Those who have 15m-30m sp who are right where they want to be or right on the verge of where they want to be and don't want to waste their preciously divided up time on getting into something very specific.

    Your grievances are justified, but eve probably needs this as a business model to compete with elite dangerous and the like. I will have little respect for people who unsubscribe because of a change that they don't have to use that will likely bring more subscriptions to eve(looking at u comment section -_-). I can only see this as a good thing, provided it's regulated well.

    Help CCP regulate it well. I believe in you SugarKyle. We need you on the CSM. Thank you for sharing your opinion. I appreciated it :)

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    1. If EVE "needs this as a business model to compete", then the game is in a much worse state than most of us would imagine.

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  13. I can understand your frustration. I really can. One one side I can see how this will be thought of as cheapening eve. But I don't think it will. I see no difference between buying sp and buying a new character. Just less bulky and I don't have do deal with wearing someone else's Avatar who's history I didn't earn. A lot of newbs don't actually bother with the character bazaar, and potentially how CCP handles it, this will be something helpful but I don't think it will be a staple. Main reason is most newbs won't have the kind of capital to spend it on sp. This kind of change will help people like me more than anyone else. Those who have 15m-30m sp who are right where they want to be or right on the verge of where they want to be and don't want to waste their preciously divided up time on getting into something very specific.

    Your grievances are justified, but eve probably needs this as a business model to compete with elite dangerous and the like. I will have little respect for people who unsubscribe because of a change that they don't have to use that will likely bring more subscriptions to eve(looking at u comment section -_-). I can only see this as a good thing, provided it's regulated well.

    Help CCP regulate it well. I believe in you SugarKyle. We need you on the CSM. Thank you for sharing your opinion. I appreciated it :)

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  14. Here, in your post and in many of the comments, it is a comfort to find words expressing so much of what this proposed change is making me feel. I do not like the proposed change but I am trying not to care so much about any such things. I am trying to play casually in whatever landscapes the game evolves but it is difficult to remain laissez-faire when this feels vaguely like a sea change which could potentially alter something fundamentally definitive about EVE. I guess we will find out. The tone of the devblog suggests CCP is pretty much set on going forward with it.

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    1. Mynxee,

      If I may cajole a little. I understand the uneasy inklings this direction CCP is considering generates. That said, “feels vaguely like a sea change which could potentially alter something fundamentally definitive” is terribly hedged. Unless one can get a little clearer on the origin of uneasiness, it’s difficult to convince CCP to forgo the possibility. Though I know not what disturbs you, I’ll speculate a little in hopes that you’ll return to correct me . . .

      Currently, skills are a pretty good map of the aspirations of your character over time. Though they may not accurately represent what your character has actually been doing, they do reflect what your character was planning to do. Commoditizing skill points can rip that history away. If you don’t like seeing evidence of what you once aspired to – snip – you cut it off and sell it away. Would echoes (for lack of a better word) mollify this uneasiness? Perhaps some sort of handicap should you choose to retrain in that area? You did butcher that part of your mind after all.

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    2. I personally couldn't care less about all the little bits and bobs on my characters I don't use any more. That isn't what bothers me, it's that CCP has found a way to turn something that previously wasn't a commodity for sale into one.

      Lets be clear here, this is not the character bazaar, not even close. The example in that devblog was a 15 million SP interceptor pilot swapping up to a 33 million SP battleship pilot. A 15 mill SP pilot is not, by any definition of the word, a newbie. That's almost a year of gameplay behind them. No normal newbie is trading up like that, I'm sure there are some day 1 players who will, but they're a far off exception because chances are most won't even know the bazaar exists till months into their life in Eve.

      I'm okay with the example on display in the Devblog, Eve's a big game and you can find yourself 3 months into a skill training plan to get somewhere you think you want to be only to find out you hate it. I did it with Stealth Bombers back when they still used Cruise Missiles and Bombs were a few years off... oh god did that fail to meet expectations. So swapping into something else through the bazaar, I'm good with that, I put in the time to get somewhere only to find out I didn't like it... I'm okay with a redo of some sort considering the investment has to be made sight unseen.

      What I am not okay with is targeting this toward new players who could end up spending RL money toward these SP allocations, and they're going to be expensive, only to hit the same hate what they spec'd into problem. Just without the months of experience the 15mil Interceptor pilot had in the example to have an inkling of an idea that maybe Battleships are for him instead. A true newbie buying these things is going to be completely blind buying skills, and the system seems exploitive of that.

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    3. @ Halycon,

      On the other hand, the person who transneuraled into poor skill point purchases can transneural out with skill point sales. A novel avenue of dabbling opens up with an intricate memory farming market to service it. I’m beginning to get a better feel for why Mynxee used the term ‘laissez-faire’.

      While this does add a new way for newbs to screw up . . . “I spent $X for a batch of skills only to discover I don’t enjoy what those skills enable”, it doesn’t seem any worse to me than “I expended X months’ time and subscription fees training towards a batch of skills only to discover that avenue isn’t my gig.” At least the new option lets you divest and/or reallocate (for a presumably reasonable fee) which in many ways seems less exploitive than forcing players to forever endure irrevocable skill queue decisions.

      Now if you’re not the type intrigued by the option of divesting you don’t have to partake which leads to my original question, “What are *you* losing? How is *your* game diminished?” These are important questions since how it feels to long term players (a terribly important revenue stream) is quite consequential. But we have to be clear that an inchoate “I don’t care for it” isn’t sufficient. CCP can’t run a business on vague, inchoate feelings.

      At the same time, “Protecting the newbs” isn’t a very good line either. As Sugar correctly points out, today’s newbs aren’t yesteryear’s newbs and CCP has to find ways to appeal to the market that currently exists, not the market of my newbhood when we had to skill up via harrowing queue path in the snow, with thunder, lightning, rabid wolfs and no way to back out. Kids these days.

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    4. @Dire,

      It's the money targeting newbies, that's the difference. There is no way, at all, this is going to be a direct 1 to 1 conversion of SP for money spent on a plex/subscription, someone somewhere has to take their cut, that's the Eve Market. They will end up paying more money, possibly a lot more.

      And they will not have any idea at the end of it why they didn't like something or not because they won't have the life experience in game to know better. Expending time in training means you at least get to know the game during that time. With this.. they spend more money to get somewhere faster, find out they don't like where they ended up... and then what? They've no connection built with the game, they don't know the game. They just know CCP sucked a large chunk of cash out of them for something they don't like.

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    5. Well, I had a rethink overnight about what was *really* bothering me and recognizing finally what it was, had a change of heart on this matter of skill trading:
      http://outlawinsouciant.blogspot.com/2015/10/musings-on-buying-sp.html

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  15. I have thought multiple times this past year of selling my main character (Borat is my public character, not my main) and I ended up not doing it because I feel a connection I do not want to lose. This said, this attachment is not about the skill points I have accumulated but about my itinerary and experiences I have had with him in the game. I made mistakes in skill points allocations, and I am glad for the upcoming opportunity to fix those mistakes. I am not a min-maxer either. I will still have my history, the corporations I was a part of, and all the stories that made me the player I am today.

    Defining a character by skills is a partial view. In Matrix one can learn a skill in an instant by being plugged, in the sci fi experience that is New Eden why not trading skills like any other commodities? Nothing will be created from thin air, someone has trained those skills, and it benefit the younger players more, which is good.

    I find more important to fight for linking all alts of the same player publicly so that this player's story in New Eden, built from one or many toons, is not hidden anymore. I do see this skill package step as a way to remove the character bazaar altogether in the future, and make sure characters that have bad reps or bad killboards do not end up in the stable of younger players that can't accurately gauge the repercussion of this to their game experience. Neural skill packages will not come with the history their character has, and this is good.

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    1. Turn that around though. New characters, not players, could enter the game by the boatload from untrustworthy players. And if their good enough at being untrustworthy players, it's self funding to continually recycle skill points.

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    2. Turn that around though. New characters, not players, could enter the game by the boatload from untrustworthy players. And if their good enough at being untrustworthy players, it's self funding to continually recycle skill points.

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  16. I have thought multiple times this past year of selling my main character (Borat is my public character, not my main) and I ended up not doing it because I feel a connection I do not want to lose. This said, this attachment is not about the skill points I have accumulated but about my itinerary and experiences I have had with him in the game. I made mistakes in skill points allocations, and I am glad for the upcoming opportunity to fix those mistakes. I am not a min-maxer either. I will still have my history, the corporations I was a part of, and all the stories that made me the player I am today.

    Defining a character by skills is a partial view. In Matrix one can learn a skill in an instant by being plugged, in the sci fi experience that is New Eden why not trading skills like any other commodities? Nothing will be created from thin air, someone has trained those skills, and it benefit the younger players more, which is good.

    I find more important to fight for linking all alts of the same player publicly so that this player's story in New Eden, built from one or many toons, is not hidden anymore. I do see this skill package step as a way to remove the character bazaar altogether in the future, and make sure characters that have bad reps or bad killboards do not end up in the stable of younger players that can't accurately gauge the repercussion of this to their game experience. Neural skill packages will not come with the history their character has, and this is good.

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  17. I feel as you do Sugar. I care for my toons as a creation of mine, not merely a tool. They a true avatar for me. The ONLY thing that would tempt me to sell them would be to get the ISK to be given away right before I unsub.

    There is no way in hell I'll cut pieces of them off to sell, even if those pieces were mistakes, not because I don't want to help a newbro, but because those pieces constitute my character in a very fundamental way. It'd be like performing a lobotomy on myself and trying to hawk the extracted brain tissue. LEFT FRONTAL LOBE HERE!! MAKE YOUR OFFERS! *twitch* Limited time offer!! *spasm* Get your Left Frontal Lobe for the amazing price of 100 million ISK! *twitch*...... *fine print* All sales are final, no returns, no exchanges. Not for human consumption. Experimentation with Fedo's may be dangerous. Keep out of reach of small children.

    -Baljos Arnjak

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  18. There's a difference between listening to points and disagreeing. You can simultaneously be open-minded and passionately and heatedly support a position. The two are not mutually exclusive.

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  19. Wait... You mean one could consolidate "skills" learned on multiple characters onto just one character?

    That'd mean there's finally a way for a newer player's characters to finally catch up on skill points. That'd be a very good thing for the game!

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    1. The diminishing returns bit in the blog. No brand new player is going to catch up with my skillpoint total without spending several thousand dollars. It just isn't going to happen. Heck, I've spent over grand to hit my skillpoint total when you add up all the years subscribed. I don't even want to imagine what it would cost with this system. With a 1/10th rate of progression after the 80mil sp mark they'd have to suck down hundreds of millions of SP from these Transneural Skill Packets to catch me. The cost would be ludicrous.

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    3. dollars? Who's talking about dollars?

      I have 12 accounts, 30 characters, most with around 30 mil SPs and I haven't spent a dime of real money on Eve. Not for subscriptions, nor for anything else.

      For me the dollar cost isn't ludicrous, it's non-existent!

      And I said newer players, not brand new players.

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    4. That was one of my first thoughts about it, but in a different manner. To activate all accounts, melt every character and asset down, and start a brand new character with only the things I actually wanted to have, and sell the rest to fund everything. Get away from all the passive things and past history and be able to see the universe fresh again...

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  20. Yaay, more aurum stuff!

    PLEX prices goes up more, more players quit who sub with PLEX, people who dont live from PLEX will quit because not enough player/content in EVE.
    Yaaay! EVE soon will become <200k subs. Yaaaaaaay!

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  21. This is actually a PayToWin or SocializeToWin system.

    This only benefits alts, thus older players, and new players with RL money invested in plex to buy SP, or new players who joins a corp with SP program.

    So new players, who just want to try out the game, and dont want to invest RL money, and dont want to join a corp right away now have more disadvantages.
    Wasnt it enough advantage to have an older friend/join a corp that you received a lot of ISK help? A friend giving a couple hundred million ISK or a corp with unlimited SRP is an advantage already. Now they also get SP.

    The argument that this will enhance new player experience is insane. It's pay to win or socialize to win.

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    1. I don't see too many people investing in SP Programs. My back of the envelope math says these things aren't going to be cheap. Not the type of cheap you toss out in SRP funds to new players who may not stick around. SRP for anything that's actually expensive is paid out to players who've been around awhile because they're the only people who have the SP to fly the expensive stuff. They're also less likely to lose the expensive stuff from day 1 mistakes, and all new people make day 1 mistakes. For new players SRP is cheap. This is going to be anything but that.

      I'm going to take a flying leap and guess it's going to be something around 5-600million per 500k SP, that's around the intersection of Plex price per training time required to turn a profit, plus whatever Aurum cost is associated in making the item. Though my gut says a billion isn't out of the question because we're kidding ourselves if we don't think someone's going to market speculate the crap out of this to inflate the price, it's what we do. 1 of these will be enough to outfit that same player with frigates and destroyers for months. To get anywhere worth being is going to cost a couple of them, so we're in the 1 billion to 2 billion range right off the bat. And I don't know about you, but I don't know any organization in Eve that can absorb that sort of cost for every new player who comes it's way just to get them up to speed.

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    2. Ok, so SocializeToWin is ruled out.
      Now it's just PayToWin in regards 2 new players who start the game, one will get to 5M SP in about 6 month, the other will be 5M SP for 9 piece of 500k SP, so with around 500M and Plex selling 1,2, you need to buy 4 PLEX, so for 4*20$ you are half a year ahead in SP then the new player who dont pay. Nice.

      Dont get me wrong if I look at this change from my perspective, I have 57M SP, as soon as this hits online I will be 80M SP from the ISK I have assuming 500M cost per piece. Thats good for me.

      But if I look back, when I started, and would see other people progress much faster than me for RL money. It would piss me off and call it PayToWin.

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    3. Oh, and if this actually takes off... to your earlier comment, it'll probably inject a lot of PLEX into the game. New players aren't going to have the liquid ISK just laying around to buy them, they're going to have to buy a PLEX and sell them for isk. Plus the cost of whatever ship their shiny new SP allows them to fly.

      That's going to be a couple PLEX for every new player who enters the game and takes advantage of this. Say 2. That allows one to be used as gametime to help ease the price, and the second to be split for Aurum to feed this unholy mess.

      It really is an elegant solution to a whole lot of problems if it takes off and is used the way CCP could only hope for.

      It's why I'm so conflicted about it. The more I look at it the more I see good and bad points from different perspectives. But I do not see it being a long term answer to CCPs cash woes of monetization. A very very small part... maybe. But not an answer, and I'm not sure taking the game this direction is worth it unless it is THE answer.

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    4. Yepp, still has the Pay to Win feel to it. New players without RL money will feel, they are behind a paywall, which discoureges new players to stay in the game.

      How I felt as a new player about old players with a lot of SP:
      "Wow, this dude has been around for years, he must know a lot of skills." I know I would never catch up with him, because he earned that much SP by investing time in the game.

      What I would feel as a new player:
      "This dude is the same age as me in game, but flies a , I will never catch up with him, unless I pay RL money."

      And the character bazaar argument is not valid, because many new players dont know about it for a long time. And also, you have to give up the choice of character's name/looks too. Thats a great sacrifice for a lot of players. I wanted a carrier char, but I rather PLEXed a 2nd account for 2 years to learn carrier skills, so the char now have my own choice of name."

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    5. There probably should be an option to change your character's name. It should cost a PLEX and there should be strict limits on how often you can do it.

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  22. When I first learned about the character bazaar (many years back) my reaction was “never going to happen”. And it still is. I like my Characters, their names and there personal history. Even the names of my Cyno-Chars are part of my little space pilot group. My main Character Chanina has quiet a lot of skills by now, many of them I don't use on a regular bases but non of them I would call “wasted”. I hardly use ECM for example, but if I have to, I can. So these new tools to shape your characters skills wont touch me much. But it provides the only way I would go to improve my characters.

    I would never purchase a character on the bazaar as the name isn't mine and wouldn't feel connected to it. But purchasing some skill points to upgrade my cyno char to PI may be an option. Sure I could do the same with (multi) character training but that takes time. I see an opportunity in this system for players new in a certain area to improve faster, like the new bro finding exploration but lacking the skills to hack the higher sites, he could dedicate some ISK to increase his level of expertise.

    With the diminishing rate I don't fear a newer character is going to match mine any time soon. Depending on the price I think someone making a jump from 15 to 33m Skill points will be the minority. But in order to keep that true I suggest to CCP that there should be a limit of SP per month, like not more than 5m per month (or even only 2). I'm not afraid of someone being able to challenge me at his first day with maxed out frigate skills or even HAC. What I fear is without limits in SP acquisition new players get addictive to fast skilling spending a lot of money to reach a wishful thinking goal like sitting in a titan, get disappointed and leave as they missed out the enjoyments on the journey to the way up there.

    Taking these journey in a slower speed may have pulled them out of it, finding out that PVP with HAC was so much fun that they don't mind to wait longer and start learning more about the game, and maybe that the Titan is the wrong ship for them. Eve is a huge universe with so much to learn about. You probably learn faster than your current skill time, increasing that with a decent amount of extra SP is OK but it should focus on small steps and intermediate goals to reach. Patience is needed to play eve in many aspects, whether it is the industry job to finish or the stalking the prey you are hunting. A too fast skill acquisition may blur this element and breed a player generation that is not compatible with the current players.

    In short: It's the only way I would ever use to get a better Character, so its a good option. But skill point acquisition should be limited to a certain amount per month.

    Little site note to Dust: You get your passive SP and with activity you can double the earning daily. That's roughly the limit I'm looking at for EVE SP boost.

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  23. I keep hearing about how this helps the "new player." I think the reality of it is that it does not. It helps alts of old players. I remember being a new player. Thrashers were expensive, anything other than t1 anmo was out of the question. The only implants I had were ones mission agents gave me whether they made sense or not. I would have gotten no benefit at all from this change.

    Our community will turn this into a horrid thing. New players will get squeezed rather than helped. This will be just one more thing that is farmed from them. We need to find ways to help new players but this I think is a harm and not a help. Basement dwellers will shout "stop being poor" even louder and feel justified in their expectations of others who want to be a part of their organization.

    Also, in this context one should ask what value does losing skill points from death in a strategic cruiser hold?

    Please no to this change. Hearing about it made me like eve less rather than more.

    - Kynric

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    1. No offense, it sounds like you don't know that many new (PvP) players. I know a lot of newer lowsec FW or pirate players that are held back by SP, not ISK. ISK for cheap ships is easy to come by if you can make friends or are in a good corp (and cashing in PLEX has never been better anyways). These newbros already have good real experience from dozens or hundreds of small fights, they are only waiting on SP.

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    2. And this is why we are seeking knowledge.

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    3. I know my best friend just started the game and he is in faction war. I haven't talked to him about this but I am sure he would likely buy a packet or 2 so he can get his core skills up and maybe fly some of the fw doctrines. (assuming the transmitters are reasonably priced, I am afraid the initial reaction of players will make ccp put too high a price tag on these items)

      Last I talked to him he was being asked to build his battleship skills when he still needs to build some other small ship skills. This would definitely give him some flexibility. For example he could set his attributes at max perception and willpower and then put the extra points in all those intel/mem support skills.

      And if ccp makes some money that is good too.

      Cearain

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  24. Wow.

    CCP will rather behead all of EVE's sacred cows for a fistful of dollars, than adress highsec...

    Frankly. My main could use buying SP to cover all the times it's been unsubbed. But, why bother? I don't need any more SPs, I need stuff to do with the ones I already have... but that is too much?

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    1. In theory, if CCP finds new ways to make money (SP extractors?) that help give a leg up to newer players, they could afford developers and time required to create entirely new PvE content.

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    2. So it looks, right? After all, we know that 80% of those noobs will skill up to their Ravens and thus will burn faster through PvE, leading to shorter tenures and a even less satisfying progression... new better PvE in a a new better highsec would be a good way out of such even faster churn rate.

      But so has become CCP, selling your way up the ladder even if that hurts their subscription model or is a poop on the face of every idiot who spent 6 months skilling up for a Marauder...

      Mind you, they won't sell the skills themselves, but actual free skillpoints, ready for allocation. Don't ask me how does that make any lore sense; I thought that skills where neural paths being slowly carved in the brain structure, but now they're just a magical substance which can be transformed and transported all over the place...

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  25. How is this any different than the Character Bazaar? If anything it is worse than because it has diminishing returns. Right now you can play gain ISK then go buy a character, or go buy PLEX then turn into a character. That is way more Pay2win then this. Bazaar day one pay $100 get X character. New version sorry need 5 million sp before can use.

    If you think sp points are why you lose fights joke is on you. Just like poker is a game of luck.

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  26. I don't like this change because it reduces my attachment to my characters. In the past, I fell in love with them and their story of evolving capabilities. Now, I should think of them as widgets to which I should attach skills, for a nominal price, of course.

    Having a lower emotional investment in my characters inevitably means a lower emotional investment in the game (for me at least).

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    1. This change shouldn't make you think any different about your own character anymore than the fact that nor everyone who plays this game roleplays. Just because the option is there doesn't mean you have to use any side of it.

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  27. "I have seen a steady progression of belief from various players that someone should enter into Eve and instantly be competitive. I don't understand why this is but it exists."

    I don't honestly care if they are competitive. I think its more about player retention and helping to get them feeling up to speed and involved before they throw up their hands and leave. Those of us still here are the survivors. But how many were left behind? Now maybe it is as it should be, and only the strong survive, the ones willing to go through it. I don't honestly know and I'm torn on that. But concepts like this are about player/customer retention. At some point the "hug a new bro" theory might not go far enough to achieve the desired goals. Again, I am torn about how far one goes to make that happen.

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  28. Nope. P2W pure and simple so this game is no longer for me. It was was a great ride while it lasted. Thank you Sugar for your hard work on behalf of the games community. Best wishes.

    Mark.

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    1. Dude. I know it looks like this is decided, but it ain't. They're looking for commentary. If you don't like it, say so with reasons. :)

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    2. Rob,
      Many of my reasons have been covered in the posts above and on other forums so I am sure CCP is aware of them :) I can only vote with my wallet - if I like the product I give CCP money by paying my subscription and if I don't like it I stop paying and playing.

      In the end, and this is purely a personal thing, I do not want to invest time into a game where by paying money to CCP you can bypass a core mechanic of the game. Some argue that you can do this anyway via the character bazaar, but I am ok with that since those characters were trained in adherence to current game mechanics, are limited in supply by the time it takes to train them, and by the skill set desired by the purchaser. Under the new system you will be able to create nearly infinite "perfect" characters for any role instantly provided you have sufficient real life or in-game cash. A consequence free theme park ride Eve where any content is available right now for a price. This does not appeal to me so I will leave if this comes to pass. Best wishes to those who enjoy this sort of thing and I hope CCP makes squillions of dollars with this model. They deserve it if only because they once made the most amazing game I ever played.

      Peace
      Mark

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    3. I can't really see it as pay to win.

      Sure, you can create an alt, pay the thousands of real life dollars to buy the skills and the ISK to sit in a Titan.

      But then you have to fly the thing, and not die. And in that, you have no significant advantage over anybody else.

      I personally don't see a huge issue with this system. The only thing you won't be able to reliably do is judge your chances against another player when they enter Local simply by looking at their character creation date. And I don't really see that as a bad thing, either.

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    4. The Character Bazaar is more P2W then the skill trading. If you you don't see that then your standing in the forest not seeing the trees.

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