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Going Minmatar

October 12, 2009

Yeah, so I love my Rifter.  Apparently I’ve got the the need for speed. It was a fun weekend and a lot happened, so let’s get started.

First off I spent a couple of hours playing with Rifter fits in EveHQ. Finally coming up with something I liked and fit Siberian’s skills. This fit was then used as a basis for 3 variations, ranging from affordable, to more expensive, to I don’t quite have the skills to make it work yet. So here is my Rifter, Ruffian Class mark I.

Ruffian mark I

Ruffian mark I

With the fit complete I went shopping for enough components to loadout about 3 of these, saving as much ISK as I could in process which involved making about 25 jumps to get to 5 waypoints to pick everything up and then head back to base. Speaking of waypoints, that whole game system could use some improvement, I’ll probably write a post on my suggestions at some later date.

Ready to test my new ship I flew out to some asteroid belts to do some ratting.

ruffianmI

She handled exceptionally well, so I took her to a level 2 Deadspace complex, first two rooms were a breeze but I had to bail on the 3rd one. Still I was very happy with my fit. I ratted for awhile longer then I wanted to get in some trouble so I headed to lowsec.

Making the rounds thru the belts I ran into this guy and two other Guristas:

wanted

I took out his sidekicks easily enough but I couldn’t do enough DPS to hurt the boss, on the other hand he couldn’t track me fast enough to hit me very much so it was a stalemate. I announced in local that there was a pirate with a bounty in belt 5 if anyone wanted him. Someone sent me a fleet request and I joined. I wasn’t too concerned about a betrayal at this point. He said he would help me take out the rat but that he needed to get more help. After flying around the pirate for 15 minutes I was getting dizzy and my new fleetmate didn’t seem to be finding anyone so I gave up and headed back to station. Really wanted that bounty.

The next day I went out looking to lose some ships for the 50fights project. I had yet to lose on of my Ruffian Rifters so I was feeling confident. In lowsec I warped to a spot I made about 300k off a gate. There was a Jaguar hanging out at the gate and after a moment he started heading towards me. He sent me a fleet invite but I declined not convinced I wanted to get into this fight, thinking I’d probably lose. So I waited till he was about halfway to my position and I warped to the gate and jumped to the next system. Then I changed my mind, I wanted the fight, so I jumped back. He was still out near my book mark so I warped back. Targeted him, webbed him and opened fire. And he did the same. There is something funny about two really fast frigates webbed about 1000m from each other basically just throwing stones back and forth. He had bigger stones and I was quickly into structure. He wanted 10m from me which I declined and offered a GF to which he replied “Likewise” and I warped off in my pod. Now that was fun!

The day was almost over when I realized I was ending the weekend with more money than I started it, which certainly hasn’t been the case most times. The only problem is that I was itching for another fight so back to lowsec I go again.

It wasn’t very satisfying, while fighting some rats and getting hit pretty hard this guy warped in and hit me once or twice and I went boom. I ran back to home station. After buying replacement parts I was down a good bit thereby ending the weekend with less money than I started with. Oh well.

It was a great weekend in New Eden and I was happy to lose 2 more ships in PvP, so only 46 more to go : )

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I Suck at ISK

October 8, 2009
Not much of a trader, am I?

Not much of a trader, am I?

Here are my total transactions from EVE Commander for the last 90 days which is almost as long as I’ve been playing EVE. Sad.

A couple notes though, I have been funding Sterling Black a bit helping her out and being the generalist I am I don’t spend all my time trading and I have more expenses than someone who is just focusing on trading. Still pretty sad though.

This morning I got an email from EVE Commander which prompted this whole post:

“If you would like to continue to use the full edition, please transfer the amount of 5 million isk to the ingame character ‘woddel trader‘.

This price has been set as your account with eve commander is more than three month old (even with your balance still less than 20 mil). Free use of eve commander full edition is intended for new players and not chars keeping their cash in an alt or corporate account… :)”

But I’m not keeping my isk somewhere else! I just suck at it!


Clearly if I want to start making isk instead of treading water something has to change. Yesterday I listened to Episode#4 of Missions Collide which was all about trading. A great episode and very helpful. Also This morning I saw this post on Stabbed Up that I think will help me.

All in all I think if I’m more patient and more focused with my trades I’ll be ok. But it’s hard to be patient when I really want to get back into my 50 Fights plan. Oh well, at only 6 Million skill points I’m still an EVE infant.

Look! Do You Hear That?

October 6, 2009

I’m all about immersion, and for the most part EVE does a great job at putting you into your ship and making you feel like you really are in New Eden. Only the sound is lacking. Generally I’m not very sensitive to the quality or quantity of sound in games but I do wish there was more in EVE.

I’ve put together a casual list of suggested sound improvements I’ve been thinking about. I know there are improvements planned for Dominion so here’s to hoping some of the changes are on my list.

Combat

  1. Shield/armor/structure warnings “Shield strength is now below 50% and dropping”
  2. Any sort of EW. “The targeting computer is being jammed by enemy frigate.”

General

  1. Proximity alerts. Would be especially useful while scanning. This could be turned on and off and set to a spherical range from your ship. “Unknown/Hostile/friendly cruiser is within 15,000km”
  2. Anytime there is a flashing red in your overview. “Warning! Hostile craft in vicinity!
  3. Activating the directional scanner

Communication

  1. When someone private convos you. “Communication request incoming”
  2. New Mail. “Message received”
  3. Various beeps and blips that can be assigned to different chat channels so you know when there are new messages.
  4. New transaction/wallet journal notification sound.
  5. Someone on your buddy list signs on or off.

Navigation

  1. When you arrive at a system where you have set a waypoint. “Waypoint Aunennen reached.”
  2. When you arrive at a destination. “Destination Nonni reached.”

Ambient

  1. In general I’d like to hear the ships being a little more “alive”, very subtle ambient sounds.

This is all off the top of my head. Would love to see more ideas in the comments.

Space Tourism

October 5, 2009
Pesky rogue drones

Pesky rogue drones

My Wife, the Capsuleer. Part II.

October 5, 2009
Mathilda 95

Mathilda 95

As promised it’s a lovely saturday afternoon and I’m watching my wife shape the Gallentean face of Mathilda 95. I had guessed she would choose Gallente, I didn’t expect her to stop the Caldari intro movie and decide not to be one even before it finished though. While she tried to decide which hair style and accessory was the lesser of two evils, I gave her a brief history lesson on New Eden and exactly what a Capsuleer is. Somewhat satisfied with Mathilda’s looks my wife began her EVE career.

My teaching style and my wife’s learning style don’t coincide so I had promised to keep my mouth shut unless she asked a question. So in order not to totally lose my mind wanting to “help” I went about my own way in New Eden and only glanced over every once in a while.

My impression after an hour of watching Mathilda learn is that the beginner’s tutorial does a good job of telling you how to do things but not why, and certainly doesn’t give you the bigger picture. Specifically the fitting screen. Considering how important ship fitting is and how many different kinds of modules and combinations of items are possible the fitting screen needs way more initial explanation. Everyone who plays EVE knows what an intense learning curve it has, and EVE is definitely not designed for the casual gamer but a “bigger picture” approach to the tutorials and introductions to the game tools would benifit all new players regardless of gaming experience. I also believe that this approach would highlight the difference between EVE and other MMOs more clearly. EVE is not about “go here”, “collect 10 of this”, “kill 3 of them” but the intro tutorial is pretty much like this, perhaps giving a new player the wrong impression of EVE.

Beginning tutorials complete Mathilda moves onto the career agents. At this point my wife wants to “just explore” but after some urging from me she agrees to do the career agent missions. One mission later and it was time for a break. When my wife logged back into New Eden it was clear that a lot of what she had learned hadn’t really sunk in. I explained a lot about the fitting screen, how to find her optimum range, how to target, what the difference between warping and jumping is, and what an acceleration gate is. As she finished for the day she remained hopeful if not enthusiastic. “I think I might like it”, she said.

Filled with hope and glee I sent her links to BattleClinic’s New Player Guide and CCP’s gorgeous Career Guide. BattleClinic’s guide was a great resource for me as a new player and I hoped that the Career Guide would open up the possibilities of EVE in that bigger picture kind of way.

On sunday most of the day passed before my wife launched EVE, I tried to push her to read the guides I sent but honestly we were both tired and hungover from a hard night of tequila and RockBand so I didn’t push too hard. When she did head back to New Eden she announced she was going on a salvaging mission, unfortunately she had put the civilian salvager in her cargo hold instead of fitting it to the ship so she headed back to station. Geared-up and ready to go she flew out to the mission area, she dispatched the rat there without much trouble but needed help knowing how to salvage. That explained she headed back to the station. I can’t be sure but I think she gave a little sigh before saying “Yeah, I think I’m done with EVE”. She said she really wanted to like it because she knew it would make me happy (she’s the best) but it really isn’t her kind of game. I wasn’t surprised that she didn’t like it and thanked her for trying it out.

She asked me why I liked EVE, and I came up with this list:

I like flying around in my spaceship.

I like that most the game is player controlled and influenced.

I like the complexity and that there is always something new to learn or delve deeper into.

I like the sandbox.

I like that I’m not forced into one character type from the start and I can switch direction anytime I want.

I like that the player base skews older than other MMOs

and

I love the enthusiasm and sense of community the players have.

My Wife, the Capsuleer experiment ended as I expected but it was an interesting and enlightening journey.

My Wife, the Capsuleer.

October 2, 2009

My wife offered to try EVE. And yes that’s what I meant to type. I’m as shocked as you.

When I first started playing I half-jokingly asked her to play with me, it wasn’t a totally far-fetched idea, she occasionally will try a game with me on my xbox, she likes Sci-Fi, wants to go into space, constantly plays puzzle games on her iPhone, and I knew she could play EVE almost without firing a shot if she wanted.

I never actually expected her to agree. To be honest, her playing was part of a deal we made but it was her idea. This was shortly after she looked at my flickr stream on my blog and said “Those are pretty, almost makes me want to play”. And she offered. So I’ve had her download the client, I’ve sent her a buddy invite, and on saturday she’s climbing into her pod. I’m sending Sterling to watch over her and answer the million questions about EVE that the tutorials don’t answer but I’m not going to tell her how to do anything unless she asks.

I can’t wait to see how it goes. I don’t really expect her to get into it but it’ll be fascinating to see what she thinks of it. I am holding out hope that she might actually get sucked into trading and playing the markets, maybe even scanning and manufacturing. I think I might die of joy if she actually likes it.

I’ll be reporting on what happens after Saturday.

Split-Personality

October 1, 2009

Sterling is about halfway done with the tutorial agent missions, and Siberian flew around adjusting some market orders last night. Pretty quiet and non-eventful. I gotta say I’m loving the speed the Minmatar ships get. I hit the afterburner on my Rifter and I could hardly believe how fast I was going.

Now that I have two accounts I’m running one on my PC, and another on my Macbook (booted into windows). The Macbook gets about 15fps with all the graphic settings on low, so it’s just passable. Totally fine for making trading runs in highsec but certainly not for anything more dangerous.

Sterling is getting all my attention at the moment but I miss Siberian and I’m finding it difficult to play both at once. I’m not much of a role-player but a lot of my immersion from the game comes from “getting into character” in my head. It’s difficult to be invested in both characters equally, maybe I just need practice.

Really wishing I was at Fanfest right now.