Friday, December 14, 2012

BB42 : 2012 Community Review of EVE Online

"A gaming universe as vast and unique as EVE Online is constantly evolving and the experience is different for every participant. Conventional games review techniques cannot possibly hope to provide an accurate measure of every aspect of EVE's gameplay. However, with a community initiative like the Blog Banters, we have the resources to deliver the most thorough and up-to-date review ever.

By combining the experiences of contributors from across the EVE metasphere, we get a wealth of opinions from veterans and rookies alike. We'll be able to combine input from faction warfare specialists, wormhole residents, null-sec warriors, missioners, pirates, industrialists, roleplayers, politicians and more to paint a complete picture of the health and progress of EVE Online in its current Retribution incarnation.

Who better to review EVE Online than those who know it best?"

Was it really 362 days ago we did the 2011 review? Doesn't time fly when you're violencing important internet spaceships! I'm tempted to re-read that post. I won't. I'll try and do one from scratch. I wonder how my views have changed in that last year!

So here I go......

Eve Online : Retribution - Faction War in 2012

My review is going to concentrate on faction war with a little bit of space piracy thrown in for good yaaaarrrrr measure.

Gameplay - Faction War PvP

Player verses player in Eve Online is simply awesome. Like many games you can fit your ship (avatar) with a variety of expensive and shiny bits of gear to make killing people easier. But wait! In Eve Online, if you die, you'll probably lose it...... ALL! Yes, Eve Online is rather unforgiving and all those billions you spent kitting out your ship can be lost in an instant and those modules and weapons that survived the destruction of your ship will probably be looted from your ship by your enemy. So make your choice, cheap gear giving less performance or expensive gear which will bring a tear to your eye if you get killed! 

Not many other games make your hands shake during PvP.

Whilst PvP is part of everyday life in Eve, Faction War is seen as the easy to get into part of it. The four playable Empires are at war with the Caldari and Amarr against the Gallente and Minmatar.

Whilst I was writing this, I thought I'd undock and see if I could get a fight for some screenshots. Took me two minutes...

Faction war is about PvP, pure and simple. Yes there are complexes to capture and NPC's to shoot and missions to run. But all of these are there to provide PvP.

Now the sandbox does has its problems. Think of it like real war. Its not supposed to be fair. You might be winning in an awesome 1v1, but there is always the possibility of his mates turning up to make your 1v1 a 1v12. There are no battlefields here, no arena's, no rules. You don't have a computer sorting you into equal teams, no sorting of players to make a good battle.

Notwithstanding this, with hand-shaking 1v1's and massive fleet engagements between hundreds of ships, PvP in Eve Online is certainly...



In days-gone-by Eve Online was known as a game that didn't need an expensive rig to play. The gameplay was king and whilst the graphics were nice, it wasn't all about the eye candy. However, those days are not really with us. Now I have friends who cannot really play Eve as their PC fails. But for the rest of us, Eve Online is beautiful!



I played WoW (sorry), I played EverQuest, I played Star Wars Galaxies, Age of Conan and Warhammer Online. I've been playing games on PC's since Wolfenstein 3D. Not one single game has lasted anywhere near near Eve Online. Why?

Single Shard - In March I was part of a fleet that ganked a PL titan. Two weeks later I was passing groups of players talking about it at Fanfest.
Not a single game - Bit bored? Do something different. There are dozens of "careers" in Eve.
No character classes - Other MMO - "Oh what a fantastic sword. Pity I'm monk class and therefore I cannot even hold it!". Eve Online - "If I train it, I can use it!".
Community - Well, what can you say about the Eve-O community other than 'Awesome'.
CCP - OK, some times they get it wrong. But then again which game developer makes videos like...


Ease of Getting Into.

Oh dear. Now we're on a sticky wicket! Whilst the learning cliff curve has flattened out a lot, Eve is still not an easy game to get into, especially with PvP. Don't believe me? Take a week old toon in the best ship they can fly and go looking for a fight in low-sec. You need to learn the mechanics, you need to learn how to fly, you need to learn the game. But most of all, you have to wait until your character has enough skill points to compete. Yes, in every fleet a T1 frigate to act as tackle is useful. But they also assplode pretty quickly. I tried PvP several times and hated it. Finally it clicked, but my toon was almost a year old by that time and if it hadn't been for the community I'd have given up and be playing a Kung-Fu Panda somewhere! I get a lot of hits from Google with people using the phrase "Is Eve Online fun?". Yes, yes it is, but you need to give it a chance. You get back what you put into the game.

The way Eve is, it'll never be very easy to get into PvP. But perhaps that is a good thing?



Eve haz sound! Apparently in the early years the sound in Eve taxed your PC so much most had to turn it off. These days it is different. Great music, stunning effects and alarms going off right, left and centre as your important internet spaceship gets hammered from all sides. All we're missing is the screams of the dying crew!

Retribution has done a lot to improve the sound effects and music in 2012. All is good!



There really is nothing like Eve Online out there. An amazing sandbox set in a stunning sci-fi universe where your actions can resonate through the universe. The PvP is meaningful and to me that is perhaps the main difference between all the other MMOG's out there. Sweating brow, shaking hands and the euphoria when the last ship in that gang of five tried to gank you explodes to your guns! With an amazing community, amazing devs and a truely amazing game, Eve Online is hear to stay..... providing we can attract the new blood from the bottom of that learning cliff!

38/50 doesn't sound right for an awesome game, but the inaccessibly of good PvP for new players does drag it down I feel.

P.S. - Comparison to last years review. Exact same score. Spooky!

No comments:

Post a Comment