Wednesday, June 12, 2013

WhatEVEr Happened to...?

Eve Online? Well it is still out there and still cranking out updates and changes.  The latest release is Odyssey.  There are many full and better reviews out there so I won’t attempt an exhaustive list of features, but I can comment on what my experiences have been.

When last we left our intrepid pilot, Masada, he was deep in Providence with the CVA alliance.  While I always try to keep tabs on general events in Eve, I can’t always keep up with the actual personalities involved.  Eve is still a full monthly subscription game and that makes it prohibitive to play compared to free titles like Star Trek Online or Neverwinter, but something is still compelling about the silent expanse of Eve.  

When I returned, Masada was right where I left him and even in the same alliance and still in a friendly station.  This is something that can actually go wrong in nullsec regions like Providence.

I reconnected my Planetary Interactions (basically planet side manufacturing), tweeked my ship configurations a little bit and bolted out in to our home pocket to do a little ratting.  Everything worked about as I remember and then a drone got popped and another was almost dead.  WTF? Mobs almost never locked drones before.  I thought maybe this particular combat site must be special, but nooooo.  As I ran more Cosmic Anomalies (randomly spawning combat sites), it became clear that drones were definitely first on the mob menus.  My ratting Dominix battleship was vastly diminished.  I could tank forever, but I couldn’t keep my drones alive long enough to clear a site.  Replacing drones is expensive and time consuming.  A Heavy Assault drone in Providence can cost 2 million ISK a pop and are often many warp jumps away.  Dejected I clone jumped back to Empire to try some missions.

Rather than waste more drones, I went ahead and fit a modest Raven battleship.  The Caldari ships focus on missiles which have gotten a lot of love from the Eve developers in the last year or so.  Missiles now have fully animated launch sequences and leave these awesome vapor trails as they smash on to targets with new explosions.  It was very satisfying.  Many ships (like the Raven) have seen some changes to help balance them out.  This makes the "lower" end ships like the Raven better while shaving a little off the top of the "higher" end ships like the Rokh.   I made some isk and had fun chatting up my new corpmates in the same alliance.  Without putting in long hours I was making isk and enjoying the pretty stars (and explosions).

About this time my son decided he wanted to trial Eve so I helped him get started and then sent him a few million.  After figuring out the new mob mechanics I decided to jump Masada back to Providence to continue ratting and to poke at exploration.  I didn’t want to leave the boy all alone in Empire so I activated my 2nd account.  I figured I’d leave my alt with the boy to help him figure out mining and running missions and when he wasn’t online, I could run Masada in Providence.

So far it has all been working out nicely.  I give the new release a big thumbs up.  It is a good expansion on top of a decade of developed mechanics.  Eve continues to be a beautiful game with a lotta buttons to play with.  For me it is still a slow game—easy to keep up with—but it sure doesn’t have to be.  PvP remains fast, furious, and pulse pounding.

Will I be in space every day? Oh, I dunno.  I tend to think no, but it is fun for now.

No comments: