Welcome to Jester's Trek.
I'm your host, Jester. I've been an EVE Online player for about six years. One of my four mains is Ripard Teg, pictured at left. Sadly, I've succumbed to "bittervet" disease, but I'm wandering the New Eden landscape (and from time to time, the MMO landscape) in search of a cure.
You can follow along, if you want...

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Best of 2013: 10 - 6

I'm combining a "Best of 2013" retrospective with a good old-fashioned pledge drive.

If anything you've read on this blog this year has made you smile, made you laugh, saved your ship, gotten you a ship fitting you like, made you some ISK, or otherwise gotten you through a boring work day, gate camp, structure bash, or fleet op, I'm here asking that you throw a little ISK my way. It doesn't have to be a lot; just whatever you can afford. Alternately, if you have assets or experienced characters scattered around that you have been too lazy to get rid of or don't want any more, those are just as valuable to me. Contract them over or contact me about a character transfer and I'll find new owners for them or I'll put them to work myself.

Either way, send your contributions or your contracts to Ripard Teg in game. And let me know in an EVE mail if you want the fact that you contributed to be public or not. Thank you so much for all the contributions! Public shout-outs to CreamCoffee Patrouette, Ashred Evanalan, Viktor Markov, Caroline Grace, Alexandra Thiesant, Este DeStirr, Handy Jay and Sarisa Scherwil (who was very generous! thank you!). Thank you again for your support! I'm really humbled by it.

I'll be shaking the tin cup over the next two days in the "Best of" posts, concluding with what I thought was my best post of 2013 on Saturday.

#10: Conflict of interest -> COTW: Ganking isn't PvP and never was
Holy crap, did this pair of posts get me yelled at. It started with a basic analysis of what appeared to me to be a philosophical reexamination of the nature of EVE Online itself by the EVE developers. The genesis was a simple question: "What if some players just want to be left alone?" And from there, my piece ranged all over the damn place looking at the various aspects of this question. One particular paragraph still rings loud and clear today:
"EVE is a sandbox," we're told again and again, usually by an EVE player right before they inflict some deliberate horror on someone.  "It's a dark cold universe and I can play EVE however I like, because EVE is a sandbox.  You have no right to tell me how I can play this game.  If I want to hurt this guy, he's in the sandbox and I can do that."
Only the problem is, it's usually the gankers telling the PvEers how they should play the game, not the other way around! Even as they describe the game as a sandbox! When I went to clarify that position by chatting about one of the hundred or so comments this post drew, I only made things worse (he said with glee). I didn't write enough posts like this in 2013. I need to fix that next year.

#9: If you're gonna do something dumb...
In this post, I cheerfully pointed out that He Who Shall Not Be Named lived in a country where very few PLEXes sold... right after he bragged that he'd sold dozens and dozens of PLEXes on eBay, exactly when he'd sold them, and exactly how he'd disbursed those PLEXes. I pointed out this behavior was not-so-smart and a lot of people ended up agreeing with me, including CCP Stillman. And the person in question says the CSM has no influence...

#8: War never changes
Back in March, Shadoo was pointing out how absolutely everyone really hated the idea of a massive sov war between TEST and the CFC. As an alternative, he proposed setting up a -- wait for it -- thunder-dome in Cloud Ring. People would deliberately move to this region of space, pick a side, and the various players would go after each other in PvP fights except there wouldn't be any structure shooting. I spent about 1200 words explaining how ridiculous I thought this idea was. Needless to say, TEST is still firmly entrenched in that part of New Eden because everyone continues to hate huge sov wars-- owait. Also, I'm reminded that I want to do a post about high-sec war-decs sooner or later. It's on the list.

#7: Overwhelming force
I was really pleased with how this one came out. As a history buff, I've been dying to invoke the Battle of Leyte Gulf as an analogy for EVE sov warfare and this post finally gave me an excuse to do it. In the process, I made what I think was a pretty damn strong case for introducing the concept of terrain to EVE Online using both that battle and the old Homeworld series as philosophical examples of how it could be done right and what the advantages would be. People came out of the woodwork to tell me how much they enjoyed this piece, which I was thrilled to hear! We'll see how influential it ends up being, if at all.

#6: Backfire
I get a kick out of when people call me a CCP shill because not a month goes by where I don't rip CCP devs a new one over something I think they could have done a better job with. This is probably the most flagrant example this year. If I think something is almost right, I'll try to be gentle. But if I think something needs a lot of improvement, I am afraid I go into full-on autopsy mode, as I did in this post about the ghost site introduction live event. Boy, did this post get me some virtual dirty looks. There's likely a Community Team member or two still poking pins into a Ripard effigy. I'm pretty sure this was the most commented-upon thing I wrote this year. A lot of people were... ummm... upset.

Tomorrow:  #5 through #2.

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