I really am hopeless where it comes to remembering where I read something. Last week someone listed a post on Eve Bloggers that discussed a proposition by CCP Ghost to integrate the backstory into the new player experience. The keynote had been discussed on plenty of sites, many of which I didn’t pay any attention too because I am not as immersed in the game as I would like to be. While I am sure I could find out which blog it was and provide a link it isn’t what the blog author wrote that excites me it is the concept.
When I first started playing Eve I didn’t know it had a backstory and it wasn’t until about 2 years into the game that I became aware of it. Back then the new player introduction was sparse, the tutorial focused on game play and even the Character generation was lacking in backstory. The Blood Lines expansion went a way to address that, which is when I arrived, but it didn’t excite me enough to look into it further. I wasn’t a Role Player and Eve didn’t require me to be one. That was part of the draw in the first place.
So I have sailed / flown around the eveverse for more than 10 years without a solid understanding of why it is what it is. I have visited Evegate but only because it was there, I knew that was the gate from earth, the brilliant start video explains that and a little bit of what happened next but a lot is missing. Fast forward to now and everyday there seems to be news articles about Amarrian succession, Caldarian expansion, Minmatar rebellion and muttered whisperings of Jovian influence with the recent drifter appearance. There are reports of invasion, explosions, deceit, betrayal, theft and the list goes on. Behind the actual screen that I stare at there is another world and, up until now, none of it really interested me, it didn’t figure in the game I played and more importantly it had no direct effect on how I played the game. There is a difference of course between the backstory and actual story integration.
The Sansha incursion is something that I interacted with and many people play Eve solely to run escalations. The appearance of Circadian Seekers, Drifters and abandoned Jovian observation posts was another hangover from the news that I looked at. These things are written as they appear, they are not backstory unless they will eventually relate to something in the future. The way CCP seem to trickle out game content, I wouldn’t be so sure and expect the Drifters and abandoned Jovian observation posts to become a bit like COSMOS, just a weird bit of space fluff that doesn’t really make sense. Showing my ignorance here obviously, if I was more immersed in the game I would know why these things exist, but I don’t and don’t really care because they have no direct effect on my game. Saying that I don’t really care isn’t all true. I do when my game is directly effected. If Circadian Seekers warped into a belt and fried my exhumer I would be interested… very interested, but they don’t.
The blog post relating to CCP Ghosts Fanfest keynote peaked my interest and I watched it. ( you will find it here:- CCP Ghost – Keynote) There wasn’t much there apart from CCP recognizing that to retain players for more than two hours you need to make them feel a sense of purpose within the game. This made me wonder about my game experience and why I lasted more than two hours, some of which was mentioned in The Raven I never flew. There was a community then, a vibrant new player community that existed and managed to pull me past the magical time limit. I know that doesn’t exist now because I started up a new account a few years back. Rookie channel was dead. Recent re-rolls of Toons in that account have discovered the same thing. Everyone is in a rush to get out to avoid taxes.
All that aside, I want to explore the reason for the game, delve into the weird things like ‘capsuleers’ and look more deeply into why the eveverse is what it is. I want to explore why my character is Minmatar and what that actually means. Sure I get to chose what race I am, but telling the racial story in the new player experience is something that has been missing. If, as CCP Ghost mentions, the new player experience will include an integration for the player into the race/empire struggle and allow them to influence that then I am all for it. Just how that looks will be interesting and I know I will role a new Toon to check it out.
In the meantime, I figured I might as well find out what the Empires backstory actually was and stumbled across an audio version of the Eve Chronicles at The Eve Reader Podcast. This is a great resource for time poor people like me. I can slap it into the car for the drive home, and hopefully not get so immersed that I fail to see the car stopped in front of me.So wish me luck on getting a better understanding of why is it so, apologies to Julius Sumner Miller, as I immerse myself in what Eve is all about.
Hopefully CCP Ghost will be able to incorporate the backstory in a meaningful way that includes a new player and doesn’t drive him half mad like the rest of us.
Fly Safe as Always,
EDIT: Posted last week as a page because I stuffed up.