Why I Love EVE
By Allvan Harl
Why do I love EVE? Holy cow. This question is up there with “what's the meaning of life” and the wife asking “what do you want for dinner?” All three are very hard to answer correctly, if possible. I've been turning my answer over in my head for a few days now. Picking out a can of chili in the grocery story took longer than usual as I stood there, mulling over EVE's complexity, EVE's openness, and what EVE meant to me at a deeper level. Where to start. Where to start.
I started playing EVE two years ago during my New Years break from work in 2008. I'd grown bored with real time strategy games and I was suffering from swords and knights and trolls burnout. I needed science fiction bad. After checking with the wife several times to make sure she'd be ok with my taking on a monthly subscription game, I downloaded the client, made an account, and went through the 3 hour tutorial.
Right away I was hooked. The sheer complexity of EVE was the first reason I came to love EVE. I read non-stop for a month and felt like I was barely scratching the surface. The number of skills and the need to plan and prioritize. The expanse of the universe and the hundreds of NPC agents and stations. The ship stats, the equipment stats, the layouts.
I got a friend at work hooked into this game. He dived right in. The 30 minute lunch break simply wasn't enough to discuss everything we'd learned the day before or everything we needed to plan to get into that next ship, find a great corp, try manufacturing or get up the guts to venture into low sec. Other games I had sat idle. My friend had a boxed game that sat next to his computer, unopened.
As the months went by, I managed to form a birds eye view of EVE. The professions everyone talked about started to make sense as I gave them a try and some began to provide real streams of income. I joined a corp and got in on larger operations but was still free to do my own small freelance flying. I found my place in the game and enjoyed doing what I'd chosen to do. At times I would venture into something new, and it was comforting to know that if I decided it wasn't for me, I could drop it and try something else, or continue what I already knew. There are no dead ends in EVE. Every skill, piece of equipment, ship, corp and play style is available to me.
This is the second reason I came to love EVE. This game fit my interests, both long term and short term. I can grind a mission for isk, or go relax in an asteroid belt, or join a low sec roam and sit on the edge of my chair for hours. I can sit in station and just produce and research. There's a task or profession that fits my particular interest at the time. I can pursue those interests for 6 months, or for a year, or longer or shorter.
EVE also fits me should my mood be different on any particular day. Some days I'm just anti-social and want to do my own thing on my own. Other days I want to be part of a larger group. Other days I want to be helpful and help a new player with a mission or answer a question. Some days I just want to put someone in a vice and squeeze them until they pop. EVE lets me do all this at the drop of a hat. I have total freedom to do as I wish.
But that's not all for EVE and why I love it. You don't think I really stood in the chili isle at the grocery store and pondered over the just the complexity and openness of EVE, do you? No, what I realized there, trying to decide between no beans or with beans, is that EVE is more that just a game for me. EVE is about Space.
I was raised on a healthy dose of science fiction as a kid. Battlestar Galactica, Buck Rodgers, Space 1999, Star Wars, Star Trek, the space shuttle launches, Alien, and Bladerunner. I read science fictions and still do. I looked forward to the day the space station was finished and we built other ones, then opened a colony on the Moon and Mars.
Unfortunately, the future hasn't worked out as I hoped. The US spent around 100 billion dollars over some 15 years on the space station. We just spent almost 200 billion dollars on AIG in 6 months. When I was a kid, space was the new frontier to tackle, where the best nations would go, the future. Now my president is trying to revitalize the economy by getting everyone to install compact fluorescent light bulbs. Somewhere along the line the human race seems to have given up the dream of getting off this rock and became more concerned with the number of rooms in our houses, the size of our cars, how many cable channels we have, and how much free consumable media can be ripped off from the Internet. Hollywood can't do a space movie if their life depends on it and the TV networks are even worse.
And then along came EVE. EVE suddenly reminded me there are people out there still interested in space. Maybe they're not as romantically enthralled with space as I am, but they are still interested. EVE also showed me there are entertainment companies (CCP) that can do science fiction very well. EVE gives me an escape from real life and sends me to a destination I thought we would have been closer to than we are now. EVE gives me hope that the dream of space isn't dead and there are others who enjoy the subject as much as I do.
So there you have it. I love EVE because I enjoy complexity. I love EVE because I enjoy openness and non-conformity. I love EVE because I love space. I love EVE because EVE is me.