Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Define "Pirate"

A self-confessed stabbed farmer had this to say about me and my good mate Rixx on Monday.

I think you "pirates" grow some huge man balls and start living up to a "pirates" reputation.

Oooooooooo! This all stems from a trap we set for a player who were themselves setting traps using recons. We were baiting the bait. Anyway Rixx blogged about it in detail so go read that if you're wondering how this all started.

However it raises an interesting point. What is a pirate and what's a pirate's reputation within Eve Online? Oi! Google! What is a pirate?

  1. 1.
    a person who attacks and robs ships at sea.
    "a pirate ship"
  1. 1.
    use or reproduce (another's work) for profit without permission, usually in contravention of patent or copyright.
    "pirated tapes of Hollywood blockbusters"
    synonyms:reproduce illegally, infringe the copyright of, copy illegally, plagiarize,poachstealappropriatebootlegMore
  2. 2.
    rob or plunder (a ship).
    "one of the ferry launches had been pirated while still in the harbour"

OK, so ignoring the electronic type it someone who attacks and robs/plunders at sea. Obviously there is no sea where we go in Eve Online*, but that can easily be swapped for our game-world of space. So we get to "a person who attacks and robs ships in space". We're getting there.

So do I attack? Abso-bloody-lutely. As I drafted this I looked how many kills involved me. This included kills and times my ship went KERBOOM! It was exactly 6000!

So I attack. However do I rob or plunder? Again, I do. If I kill you I'll do a quick scan to make sure what's left of my ship after our fight isn't going to get dropped on by someone who will finish me off. If we're clear then I'll burn over to your smoldering wreck and steal your 'stuffz' and any of your drones floating about. If I've been lucky I will also scoop your frozen corpse.

So a pirate attacks and plunders. I certainly do both of these. So what else?

Nothing. By definition I am a pirate. Google says so! I attack ships and steal from them. That's what pirates do. Pirates in-game can do more but we don't have to. Some gate camp attacking industrials. Some ransom pods. Some lurk in belts or DED sites waiting to gank PvE fit carebears. Some suicide Catalysts into freighters in hi-sec I tend to look for those looking for fights.

The vast majority of the Eve-base will categorize me as a pirate. A scout for a fleet will probably refer to me as "...a pie...". I'm -10, live in low-sec and I fly combat ships and fight. However I don't really see myself as a pirate, I'm a PvP'r. A gamer. Whilst I'd never compare Ee to a "Spunk, Gargle, Wee-Wee" game as I player it's the same. And like in PvP in any game, I'll use the game mechanics to my advantage. Just look at my killboard. Vast majority of my fights these days are 1v1. I'll try taking a faction frigate in a T1 to test myself. However I have no problem taking a T1 frigate with my faction frigate these days. It's all fighting in the end of the day.

This is not Pirates of the Caribbean. There is no "The Code" no honour amongst thieves. "He who falls behind is left behind"? Well depends what the other side dropped! If it's an overwhelming force then sorry dude. If it's something we can fight then overheat that repper, hold on and I'll be right back in a new ship to try and rescue you. It is strictly forbidden to attack and sink another pirate? -10 vs -10 make some of the best fights!

There is no "reputation". There is no "pirate's code" in Eve. We are called pirates simply as it's easier to say than what we really are!

"...OK in local there are two neutrals, one war target... and a PvP'r...."

Oh and the first of you to say "Parlay" during a fight gets podded!

*Oh do shut up you PI bear :P


  1. Well said. As a side note any "honor" among Pirates was generally reserved for those mates serving on the same ship. Which, to me, translates easily to Corporation in Eve. "Ye again us, ye ain't fer us"

  2. Does it really matter what others call you? If they deem you a pirate, they're going to be hesitant, which gives you an advantage. If they don't deem you a pirate, they'll underestimate you, which will get them killed. Ultimately, what matters is how you view yourself.

  3. I'm the anonymous player that you wrongly state that I'm "A self-confessed stabbed farmer..." Please go back and reread my post. No where in it do I state that. I guess somehow by misquoting me you thought it would give this post some legitimacy. Regarding this article, I guess I'm a pirate too because I kill ships and loot. That's a pretty broad definition of a pirate in Eve. I think most people would agree that the act of piracy is a cowardly act, they usually run from a fight or set traps. So by that description I'd have to say that you and Rixx are pirates - congrats!

    1. Anonymous has a point regarding how pirates usually behave - running from real fights, setting traps etc. My main question is can you really consider yourself a pirate while living in faction warfare lowsec space shooting legitimate militia or pvper's. I don't consider neutrals - not neutral because of sec status but non-militia - to be pirates. I consider them threats as non-declared war targets. I think to consider yourself a pirate your primary game play would be to feed off of the innocent or non-expecting pilots for profit - not legitimate pvper's involved in FW.

    2. the running away part many -10s know really well :)

      I do gate camps, i gank stuff, i chase haulers, i extort people. Still people dont call me a pirate, they call me IRL murderer and whatever horrible things pop up in their heads. At the same time pvpers call me a coward and an idiot while running away from me.

      It is a strange game we are playing :)

      - DA

  4. Huh. I don't define myself as a pirate, and I'm sure others wouldn't either. Yes, I attack player ships and loot them, but that's usually only during a war or when our troop does small gang losec roams.

    for me, the definition of an EvE pirate, is one that shoots players and doesn't do anything else.

    I do industry, most of the time (especially lately, due to low corp numbers for pvp roams) I'm PVE in hisec.

    I don't consider null-sec folks pirates, as they aren't taking on unsuspecting folks for loot and glory, they are more mercenaries or folks defending their territory.

    Folks that live a breathe in losec, that spend their time separating other folks from their ships/loot. Them be pirates.

    Especially, if they also ransom pods.

    time for a bit of off-topic rant :

    This is where I have trouble with some players - I despise pod-ransomers. I have never paid a ransom for my skull, and never will. Pod me if you catch me, but if you start into this "we won't let you go until you pay" crap, I'll just log. Its emergent gameplay sure, but its gameplay that I happen not to like. I've never known a player that was the victim of a pod-ransom that ever spoke about how wonderful that kind of gameplay is. I've seen a few that really get off on holding other pods, but those folks are weird at the best of times.

    end rant.

    1. We have created another kind of pod ransoms, you eject from your ship and keep your pod, if you go down with the ship, pod gets smartbombed

    2. There is no way that I'd come out of that. There's no way I'd eject from a ship, aside from the fact that I'd never take anyone's word under those conditions

    3. Why not? your ship is already dead to you, so is your pod, it's better to take the chance of getting away.

  5. It is interesting how people define themselves, Pirates, PVPrs, Carebears, etc. But as Talvorian says does it matter what people call you. I personally wouldn’t call anyone a pirate I generally stick with corpies or corpmates, allies, neuts and hostiles (reds and probably oranges). But pirates does have a more grandiose, romantic notion to it, it does conjure up a pirates of the Caribbean vision to it (even if you don’t wear silly hats and have a code you adhere to).

    But in this example if I were to define “pirate” in an eve sense it would be an experienced pvper, someone that would generally not blob you so if there was a 1v1 in similar class ships they wouldn’t cry for backup they would prefer to fight on their own, win or lose.

    In saying that, and even though it isn’t a definition in the dictionary, I would like to see pirates ransom more, also, whilst definitely not a trait of a pirate definition I would like them keep to their word, I think they would be good USPs for a Pirate over someone that just PVPs as without a USP you are just the same.