Space Pirates, Crooks, Scammers, and Fun Times – This is EVE Online

 

I know a lot of you share the same feeling when gazing at the stars on a silent, cloudless night. A feeling that can only be summarised by a multitude of emotions; awestruck by its vastness, its beauty, intrigued by what it may hold, and bringing forth the desire to know and understand. 

If you could lose yourself in space, what would it be like? Don’t wonder anymore, head over to New Eden and try it out! 

I’ve played numerous other MMOs prior to EVE Online; World of Warcraft, Warhammer Online, Runescape, Knight Online and Mu, just to name a few. EVE managed to capture my attention, draw me away from sword and shield fantasy-styled games, and poke at my wanderlust of all things space, adventure, and freedom.

Transitioning from MMOs with greater amounts of censorship, my mind couldn’t comprehend the mischief one could get up to in EVE.

Take for example any post-apocalyptic narrative, what is one of the most common sources of conflict? People. As one drop of ink is enough to taint a bucket of clear water, adding a handful of people to the serenity of space results in the chaos that is EVE Online.

The community of New Eden is a special kind of crazy. There are, maybe, three good people, a few bad people, some terrible people, and the majority being "The Walking Dead’s Negan" kind of people. The vastness of this virtual space allows users to make choices that they really can’t get away with in the real world. Choices that usually have repercussions can be carried out without so much as a slap on the security status, if even that. 

Pirates, scammers, spies, suicide gankers, can baiters and kidnappers, to name a few baddies are ever present in New Eden.

My first, player-driven, ship loss came within a day of playing. Finding a seemingly abandoned yellow can in a newbie system, filled with 1mil isk of loot, made me thirst for its contents. Checking the surroundings, making sure it was all clear I continued to load the can's contents into my shiny Navitas. The next instant, 10km away from my tiny little frigate, appeared two Lachesis…

That was my welcome to EVE.

There are capsuleers out there with the sole mission of aggravating you. I lost my first Vexor Navy Issue to a loot thief. These predators lie in wait (usually in High Security Space) for other players to run rewarding PvE sites. With their fast fingers they steal the rewards of site, allowing the PvEr to attack them without Space Police intervention. Of course these thieves’ ships are fit adequately to demolish the PvEr and thus result in additional losses for the PvEr.

Jita, one of the highest traffic trade areas in all of New Eden is a cesspool of scammers. Capsuleersoffering isk doubling, tripling, and even gazillioning services spam local chat. Misleading contracts are advertised every minute. Even 10 year old veterans pose as newbies requesting “small” isk donations to help them start off. 

Trawling through r/eve one finds many entertaining tales of scams and acts against other players:

https://www.reddit.com/r/Eve/comments/591m3j/whats_the_most_petty_thing_youve_ever_done_in_eve/

 

I snorted. Some were pretty funny:  “I sent a new bro an invoice for the ammo i used to kill him, and he paid it.” – ThatguysVDD 

Then there are scams and shitposts so elaborate, such as the Olivia suicide case or the $75k USD bounty placed on an in game corporation structure, that they spilled into the real world:

http://www.pcgamer.com/eve-online-scam-olivia/

http://www.pcgamer.com/eve-online-pilot-places-a-75000-bounty-on-rival-alliance/

 

EVE Online is not your stereotypical space exploration simulator. It’s a petri dish free for all. People say that EVE has a steep learning curve. I believe this is due to the amount of freedom you have within the game. Lots of us are so used to having others tell us what to do. EVE takes away a lot of those guides and thrusts you into a sandbox where you can create what you want, do what you want, and be what you want to be. 

And even though this sandbox is full of phallic shaped sand castles (I’m referring to other players), every now and then you’ll find a majestic seaweed girdled castle, made with love, sweat and hard work, that you can either knock down or admire.

Eve has changed me… for the worse? I can freely balance my real world good nature, with a little bit of cheekiness. It’s come to the point in which my day isn’t complete without checking out the shenanigans EVE players get up to.

With the advent of alpha clones, I expect a rise in scam victims. Some consider this as filtering out the weak. How will you react to an influx of fresh meat? Will you give your dark side a go? Or welcome these new players and nestle them under your wing? It’s your call, it’s your universe.

Another plus is I get to look at the stars... albeit from a different perspective.

 

Mavridor Eyrou 2016

– Submission for Pod and Planet Fiction Contest YC118