#532 Eve Online

Posted: 20th April 2013 by Jeroen in Games
Tags: , , ,

233rd played so far

Platform: PC
Year of Release: 2003
Developer: CCP Games
Publisher: CCP Games

Eve Online is an odd game. As I mentioned, I often speak with people who know a thing or two about video games, and today the subject of Eve Online happened to come up. An article about someone who lost over $6000 worth of ingame credits, and while I didn’t know the specifics of the ship class (“it’s a beginner’s ship”), I quickly got what it was about, where the loss came from and how stupid it was. And why it’s something you can expect in Eve Online.

This game has a reputation for being lawless and allowing almost anything. It feels edgy and dangerous. And it clearly proclaims this is not a light game you can just play for a bit. Not something that matches our quickfire way of judging a game, but let’s see how that ends up.

Our Thoughts

Wow. Let’s start with the greatness. We’ve played some lovely-looking games, like Aion, but space has its own set of lovely sight and Eve Online makes full use of them. It makes for lovely travel around the galaxy.

You’ll do that a lot when playing the game. The game makes maximum use of its space setting by setting its missions in different galaxies and solar systems and requiring you to travel through space gates to get there. Although it can, at times, be beautiful, it’s just as obvious that the time it takes can be annoying. That’s why one of the first features the game introduces to you in its tutorial is the auto pilot. Turn it on and go off to do your laundry, and half an hour later you arrive and can continue playing.

This tutorial is a lot more bearable than Runescape‘s, being short before allowing you to play normally and pick your own way, with an interface dotted with help that allows you to learn about the other features as you play.

Still, its mission structure seems almost like a token effort, done because other MMORPGs have it and to set up a structure to the game. I just didn’t get the feeling it mattered as much – the game certainly doesn’t point you to them or encourages their use much. Instead, it focuses on the larger picture.

You start an empire to hang out with and shortly after the tutorial are further encouraged to specialize in one or two roles, doing some specific work – mining, trading, researching or such. From there on you move on to the next step – organizations. These are pushed heavily in the interface, the guilds or clans of other games, and that seems to be the big feature of the game.

As said, the game is very much focused on the social aspect. The economy is open and a lot of what happens in the game is up to players to define – it’s clear this is where the appeal comes from. The fact that this game has a real life economist on speed-dial to make sure it’s running according to real-life models really let’s you know that they mean business. Not being involved in that as much, and not seeking the cooperation, feels dangerous – you wouldn’t want to play this game for the pretty sights and the missions, as it feels like there’s just too much that could threaten you to mess you up.

We’re not the most social players when it comes to these games and I’m sure that removed some of our enjoyment of the game. As cool as the things in the game are, not wanting to invest in knowing people removes a lot of the fun. We didn’t have as much of a chance to, considering the time we spend on each game, so missed out… if we felt more drawn into that at the start, I can see how it might really become addictive.

Final Thoughts

The main thing that prevents us from playing this for very long after the needed time is the price. I know it sounds cheap but freemium games like Aion have more to offer us since we are unable to invest a lot of time over a long period of time into an MMORPG, let alone one with a monthly plan.

Of all the MMORPGs this was definitely the most gorgeous and, arguably, the one with the most in-depth game play. With only one on the 1001 list to go… things are looking good for EVE Online.

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