Friday, July 15, 2011

Eve Online - Game or Hobby

How do you see Eve? Reading through the last CSM minutes something caught my eye. The word "Hobby". That really got me thinking. Is Eve Online a game, or is it a hobby. Can you class a single game as your hobby?

Is there a difference between a game and hobby?

Wikipedia states a hobby is:-
....a regular activity or interest that is undertaken for pleasure, typically done during one's leisure time.

And then highlights "Games" as a type of Hobby.

A game is a structured or semi-structured recreational activity, usually undertaken for enjoyment (although sometimes for physical or vocational training). A goal that the players try to reach and a set of rules concerning what the players can or cannot do create the challenge and structure in a game, and are thus central to its definition. Known to have been played as far back as prehistoric times, games are generally distinct from work, which is usually carried out for remuneration. Because a wide variety of activities are enjoyable, numerous types of games have developed. What creates an enjoyable game varies from one individual to the next. Age, understanding (of the game), intelligence level, and personality are factors that determine what games a person enjoys. Depending on these factors, people vary the number and complexity of objectives, rules, challenges, and participants to increase their enjoyment. Games generally involve mental and/or physical stimulation. Many games help develop practical skills and serve as exercise or perform an educational, simulation or psychological role.
Many children like to play outdoor games that involve physical activity such as cops and robbers and hide and go seek. Adults may play games, such as in the form of card games, board games, and in recent times, video games. Some additional games that adults would play are darts and dice games."

So playing computer games is a hobby (according to Wikipedia), and plenty of people will admit to that. But would you say that your hobby is Eve Online?

I'm happy to say gaming is my hobby. But there is no way I would call 'Call of Duty' my hobby. I do enjoy that game and I'll happily plonk down in front of the XBox and shoot some people for an hour. But CoD is not my hobby, I don't see it that way. It's a game and gaming is one of my hobbies. Minecraft, although I haven't played this for a month or two, when I first got it I played it a lot. Did I ever class Minecraft as my hobby? No. So is Eve Online a hobby for me as CCP suggest it could be or just one of the games I play for my hobby of gaming?

Trying to compare Eve to my other hobbies and I do draw some similarities. Take drinking for instance..... oh, what? That's not a hobby? OK, how about Scuba diving then? I'm a PADI Rescue Diver and a BSAC Dive Leader and Open Water Instructor. I have dived all over from the cold UK to the Carribean, Egypt, Maldives and UAE.

Exhilaration/Thrill Factor -

Hobby: Kuredu Express dive site - Sat on the back of the boat, lean backwards and see blue sky for 1 second before a splash and you are underwater. You are weightless and hovering effortlessly. You sink 30m down and the current is ripping through the channel. You feel like you are flying at speed, you even do the "Superman in-flight pose", 2m long grey reef sharks cruise past effortlessly. You grab a rock to stop, the water is thundering past you and you have difficulty holding on. Your heart is racing and you have a smile a mile wide under that mask.
Eve Online: You are sat there in space in your expensive space ship. You are in low structure and your mods are almost burnt out. Next to you is the wreck of an equally expensive ship with some nice loot inside. That was one close 1v1 and you only just did it, thank god for that shield booster. Your hands are shaking and you have a smile a mile wide.

A Photo I took of a Grey Reef Shark on Kuredu Express. Can you see the blur caused by the speed of the particles in the water!

Money -

Hobby: I spend a lot of money on my hobby. A typical dive costs £50 and the gear has set me back probably a grand with a hundred on annual servicing each year.
Eve Online: In the last year, with a Vent Server and three subscriptions I've spent about £700. Actually I've spent more cash on Eve than diving! Now that is a surprise to me.

Time (days) -

Hobby: Dive trips are arranged and set in the calendar.
Eve Online: Important ops are put in the calendar and excuses made to the wife why we have to be back early/cannot go out that night/need to leave late etc (Never mentioning Eve, needs to be something else)

Time (Input) -

Hobby: The move to the Middle East has reduced the diving I've got in but before the move it was at least 2-4 days per month.
Eve Online: I shudder to think. 4 hours a day, double that at weekends. Christ!!!!

Preparing Time -

Hobby: Cleaning kit, servicing, packing and if I was planning the trip I'd need a couple of hours to consult maps, select dive sites, check tides and currents. Probably 2 hours prep before a normal dive trip. 5-6 hours if I was Dive Leader.
Eve Online: Again, fairly scary. I'm writing this right now for a start. I've been looking at Aura on my Android Phone (the "other" Capsuleer app if you're not an iPhone iFan iBoi) looking at skill plans. Later I need to do some EFT warrioring. I'm posting and replying on the Shadows of the Federation forums. I'm thinking about Eve now at work.

Social Side -

Hobby: You've been on the boat all day with your buddies. You've got back to the B&B and washed the kit off. Had a shower and change and now wandering down to the Chain Locker pub in Falmouth harbour for a few pints, a bar meal and a laugh and chat with the other 11 members of the club until late.
Eve Online: It's some how 4am, you're trollied, and that story one of your corp mates just told you all is making vodka come out of your nose due to laughing. There are 30 of you on voice comms, mostly drunk having a right laugh whilst in fleet.

So, can Eve Online be classed as a hobby give the above? I say, now I've carefully looked through the above points, no, not really.

Eve Online is not a game
Eve Online is not a hobby
Eve Online is a minor obsession!!!!

P.S. OK, OK, I admit it, Eve is my hobby and I'm a sad geek :(

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