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.
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Monday, October 29, 2012

QOTW: My corp sent him to his death

OK.  I usually don't like to make fun of people who are clearly struggling to learn this game, but sometimes the urge becomes too strong.

Yesterday, an alliance-mate of mine ran into this:

And yeah, you'd be forgiven for wondering why I'm highlighting such a poor ship fit.  Well, the player behind it is new, having only joined the game 26 days ago.  EVE's learning cliff being what it is, the guy joined a corp.  The player probably reasonably expected some help.  That corp gave him this ship and this fitting.  The pilot involved flew it into null-sec, and the events that happened next followed each other like "B" follows "C".  Then the guy starts a conversation with the pilot that killed him.  All conversations edited slightly...
starmaser darkborn > i was just traveling what did i do to you
Dradius Calvantia > Why do you think you had to do something?
starmaser darkborn > just tell me why u did that
Dradius Calvantia > Because I wanted to...
starmaser darkborn > that was all i had and i don't have and i couldn't afford insurance
starmaser darkborn > and i'm broke
starmaser darkborn > can u at least give me some isk to get a new ship
starmaser darkborn > please man
Dradius Calvantia > Why should I do that?
starmaser darkborn > because u want to be nice after u left me BROKE
So, you know, lesson learned I'm sure.  Welcome to EVE.

The guy goes back to his corp, gets a new ship... and you can probably guess the rest:

Another death, another conversation...
starmaser darkborn > i was trying to ask u not to destroy me
Funkert > oh
starmaser darkborn > why did u
Funkert > i would have totally stopped shooting if you asked
Funkert > i don't like to kill people
Funkert > but its stronger than me

So then the guy that provided the second ship starts in on the conversation...
Funkert > i kill ppl because i'm a bad person
Darsec Tracer > I figured
Funkert > but your friend shouldn't go into 0.0, and not in bad ships either, my corp mate got him earlier today in another 0.0 region
Darsec Tracer > Yep with a Brutix which i also fitted and bought for him
Darsec Tracer > My Corp sent him to his death

The player in question?  He's been playing the game for 93 days.  The corp is four months old.  Needless to say, the guy who lost two ships in one day to the same null-sec corp is now back in an NPC corp himself.  Has he quit EVE?  Probably.  Wouldn't you?

Overall, I'm not sure if I should be welcoming this sort of new blood, or using it as an example of why EVE Online is definitely never going to break into the mainstream.  Should the game even be allowing new players to be starting corps so soon?  The game wouldn't be a sandbox if it didn't.  "Hey guys, let's all play [X]!  I'll start a guild!" is the sort of enthusiastic call to arms that works in virtually any MMO... except for this one.  In this MMO, such a call is just sending level 1s to be killed by the closest level 80, and causing people to quit shortly thereafter.

Anyway, just something that caught my eye this morning.  It'll be a busy couple of days on the blog today and tomorrow: lots of supers killed last week, I want to write about Guild Wars a bit, publish part three of the implants guide, do an update to my "best in class" post from last October, and talk some more about "tug of war" sovereignty.

EDIT (2/Nov/2012): Darsec Tracer is not the CEO of the corp in question as I wrote, but just a friend of the player that lost these two ships.  I regret the error.


  1. Having been a member in a corp that failed and had a high amount of foolishness (such as one member dual-boxing retrievers for low sec mining with +3 and +4 implants plugged in), I think that these hard lessons are a good thing. Yes, perhaps some people will quit. But others will be inspired to figure out why all the bad things are happening. After I observed a corp mate get podded repeatedly since he couldn't pay attention to local while mining, I looked up guides on how to arrange my own overview. This in turn led me to Eve Altruist and other Tusker blogs. I'm glad I witnessed the death spiral of that corp, since it inspired me to take responsibility for myself and learn about the game (even though I'm still a complete newbie).

    There is something pathetic about it all, though. I could do nothing but sigh as my corp mate reported with sad confusion in chat that he had been podded - yet again. Why would someone kill him when he just wanted to do some mining? Why indeed.

  2. These dudes almost always leave no matter how much effort you put into them.

    The thing to bear in mind is that EVE is very competitive and risky and if you're the kind of person who finds this very stressful then EVE is going to be a stressful game and not worth your idle time.

    It's not like you can drop what you're doing in the middle of anything and come back to your computer without effectively losing time.

  3. I was killed in null sec, in M-OEE8, six days after I created my first EVE character back in 2006. I took a courier mission to null sec and let my ship run out there on auto-pilot. And, surprise, my wee Bantam was blown up.

    I did not quit... though the thought certainly crossed my mind as I was still on the 14 day trial... because... well... internet spaceships!

    I wanted to play a big spaceship game more than I wanted to be good at a game.

    I think if you just want to play a EVE as a game, you can probably find better alternatives, and you likely will sooner or later.

    If you want to play EVE as the giant, merciless, multi-player space sim/social experiment that it is, there is no other game to match it.

    That will keep EVE niche, but people who want to be there in the end REALLY want to be there.

  4. Or, who knows, send the guy some info on real new player friendly corporations in the hopes that he gets some help and actually learns from his situation.

    Yes, there needs to be some work done on player retention and I am not sure how it can be done in the sandbox without seperating the sandbox into two with a hard wall between the two. Kind of like how kiddie pools are several feet from regular pools and you have to cross the patio/deck/whatever to get to the big people's pool.

  5. I actually can't think of a single "mainstream" mmo other than WoW. I fail to see how EvE of all games could in anyway become the only other exception.

    1. I can think of four: Guild Wars 2, RIFT, Star Wars Online, and Star Trek Online. Whether Lord of the Rings Online counts is up to some debate. But the first four have either a million or more players or are very close to that. In gaming, that's about as mainstream as you can get.

      In terms of non-traditional MMOs, I can think of two more: League of Legends and World of Tanks. Both of those passed a million players long ago.

    2. SW:TOR, Rift, and STO most certainly do not have 1m+ paying players. SW:TOR converted to F2P because it could not retain even 500k less than 6 months after release. STO and Rift never even came close. Rift has fewer subs than EVE. Storm Legion will likely help short-term with that, but their general sub trend will continue after (high churn).

      GW2 has no sub, and it's activity has been plummeting since release. There is a reason it has no sub, once you hit 80 you will find out why.

      LoL and WoT are not MMOs. Madden and CoD also have more than a million sales. So does Mario. Not relevant when talking about MMOs and calling EVE niche among them (unless the point is to say EVE is niche among gaming overall, at which point every MMO but WoW are niche compared to LoL)

  6. You probably should be welcoming this sort of new blood, and it probably is an example of why Eve will never break into the mainstream.

    Did anyone try to explain to him or his CEO what he'd done wrong?

    1. You have his name, right in this blog post. Feel free.

    2. Contacting him a day later wouldn't do much, he's probably quit already. If I was the shooter I'd invest 5 minutes of my game time trying to explain that lowsec and nullsec are pvp zones where people hunts each other, and if you learn how to survive there you'll get richer. They're just meant to be that way. I'd think doing like that could make some good to Eve (I just don't agree with who says these people will leave no matter what), but I'm way used to be one who thinks differently from most of you guys.

  7. This is nothing new.

    Griefing new players is supposed to be against the EULA, yet CCP has actively encouraged it for years, via such mechanisms as high-sec wardecs and suicide ganking, for example.

    And, they wonder why the new sub retention rate is so low? Duh....

    1. You're stretching the definition of griefing pretty far there, chum. If CCP didn't want new players getting blown up for their first X days, they wouldn't let people target them (or let them in null, or low, or Wormholes, or...) at all.

      If someone is still in a newbie hub, generally speaking, CCP will come down hard on people causing issues for newbies - canbaiting, etc - and they make it very clear they want those areas *safe*. Outside of those? CCP makes no claims that EVE is safe. They tell you CONCORD is there, but that you can (and will!) still get exploded for any or no reason at all.

    2. Actually, CCP will come down hard on any older player who specifically targets only newbies, even outside of the newbie systems, if it is reported to a GM and a pattern of behavior can be confirmed.

      I know of a half-dozen or so players who were perma-banned for baiting, scamming, ganking, etc. of trial account players, outside of the starter systems. Kill a few by happenstance, ok. Make it a habit, no.

    3. Wut? Getting killed in null-sec is griefing? Did you read the article?

  8. Bless.

    I don't see harm in any of this. Some games are hard. Some multiplayers are hard specifically because of other players.

    There's plenty of scope for people not suited to Eve to find a game that does suit them.

    As for Eve it suits very aggressive people or very studious people. If he had read the warning when he entered nullsec he would have been informed of the risks. I remember when I first saw a Low Sec warning thinking "oh crap oh crap" and being VERY careful not to click the jump button by mistake.

    I don't even consider it particularly niche to play a game where you can lose or to participate in an activity where you have to notice warnings. Skiing for example features both elements as does competitive driving. Football contains the former, as do most sports, while swimming in the sea is an activity where you must pay attention to warnings. It's just a pity most other video games encourage players to be half brain dead while participating.

  9. "Lesson learned [...] welcome to Eve"? If you want newbies to learn their lesson and keep playing Eve after being blown up, maybe older players should point them to Azual's blog (or any good site about PvP and Eve - I don't get iskies from Azual =]). Just getting a rise out of them like those two guys did surely won't help Eve grow.
    And before anyone goes HTFU, I'm not saying newbies shouldn't be blown up. Just think about this: if you want more good fight, you need more people to play the game, and learn the ropes of the game. Pointing them to Azual ( who is also running PvP classes ;] ) will make this more likely. Getting a rise out of a newbie who's just been blown up, not so much.

    About "should [I] be welcoming this sort of new blood, or using it as an example of why EVE Online is definitely never going to break into the mainstream.", I wouldn't built a pyramid on one pinhead.

    http://www.evealtruist.com/p/pvp-training.html :D

  10. Makes you wonder who's really killing syndicate: the people carebearing and not bothering anybody, or the people slaughtering, mocking, and refusing to give advice to new people trying to step their toes into the nullsec waters.

    1. The former of course. Why do you even have to ask that question?
      There are enough carebear corps in empire already that fail to teach their members anything. Don't need any of those in Nullsec.

  11. Yup. That's EVE's biggest problem. Itself. A terrible game with a terrible population simply comes out as a terrible experience. EVE just pronounces terrible as "elite".

    1. Wrong game for you then maybe?
      For me it is a great game with great people in it and an awesome gaming experience that never fails to pump adrenaline through my body.

    2. Played for about 4 1/2 years. The community really started tanking hard since the Summer of Rage. Since te only content to EVE is the community, and if that community is terrible, then there isn't much left to work with.

      Given the current state of the EVE community I would say that players should get used to guys like this. This is what gets posted as "hard core EVE". You're atracting this type of player exclusively.

  12. I do give them credit for having the brass to try their luck in null, however ill-starred the venture. New players either get dissed for hugging highsec or heading to low/null too soon and unprepared. Damned if you do, damned if you don't.

    They'll figure it out. The low/nullsec threshing floor separates the wheat from the chaff in pretty short order.

  13. So...these are the good fights in Syndicate?

    Just kidding.

    Seriously, why not invite the poor soul into Rote and teach him the ways of EVE. Sure that would require your alliance and corp leadership to come off their pedestals of superiority, but it's worth a shot. Or even better have one of your diplos reach out to his former corp. It would go much further along than making fun of guys who clearly had no business anywhere outside of 0.8 to 1.0 space.

    Even more-so the fact that these new players ventured out into 0.0 at such an early age should be commended. Instead, we laugh at the poor ship fittings (and it was bad), and cause them to quit EVE. That seems like the smartest thing to do for the game that we all love.

    1. Rote Kapelle's idea of "teaching" involves a lot of canings, public humiliation, and other harsh treatment. I don't think the pilot in question would be a good fit.

    2. So RK is like an English public school? I'm surprised I didn't realise this earlier. On the other hand it does explain why they're clueless about teaching.

  14. This, this and THAT... Yup, EVE is a niche game, and as long as it is a sandbox that does nothing to prep noobs for PvP and the 'harsh hard' virtualuty of EVE and it's oft correctly maligned playerbase... then this kinda stuff with keep happening. And we will stay a smaller fish in the MMO pond...

    However... IF we did something like this:

    (excerpt from: http://turamarths-evelife.blogspot.com/2012/02/blog-banter-33-capsuleer-experience.html)

    Add a layer of missions, as and end to or just after the tutorials which include, what I call a “PvPAI” [Player vs. Player AI] type of mission to teach the basics of what to expect from Player Interaction.

    PvPAI Training:
    These missions would be standard missions but with a twist, and a SUBSTATIAL reward... say a fitted ship/full set of basic implants/50M ISK or some such:

    (1) At the beginning of the missions the New Player is given a “Dire Warning”, that “There are pirates that have been preying on our pilots, beware.” Before they can accept the mission they must read through a discussion of pirates, gankers, ninjas and can/wreck flipping and their tactics and motives.

    (2) The missions should be standard missions except that they will also have a “Pirate” NPC (with the Sleeper L6 AI) in ships types AND fits normally used by gankers, mission ninja’s, can & wreck flippers and griefers. These NPCs should copy the actions and fighting style as much as possible of real players the new player will run into, “out in the black”.

    (3) The New Player should LOSE a ship (or even two) in these missions first (possibly an agent provided ship then their own), before experiencing it for real if possible leaving out podkilling. However that should be clearly discussed IE Aura says, "Pilot, you were lucky to escape with your POD intact, the Pirates of New Eden often PODkill... bla bla bla).

    (4) These missions will be in closed rooms
    that ONLY the New Player can access, he will not be able bring fleet members or ANYONE else in with him and (IE one time use single entrant accelgate key) these rooms will NOT be scannable by anyone else. IE The New Player will have ultimate protection but ONLY for the missions that make up this PvPAI training.

    (5) These missions will ONLY be available only ONCE and ONLY to a 'New Account' who finishes ALL the tutorials, as an inducement to actually DO them all. The missions and their rewards will be mentioned at startup (with a 'disable' switch) and referenced often by Aura and in the tutorials as the new player works his way through them.

    Just one Pilot's thoughts...

  15. . . . And this is why Eve subscriptions are basically flatlined, and quite likely many, if not most, of the subscription increase is a result of current players getting extra accounts. Good for monthly cash, bad for the amount of inbreeding it represents. Thankfully, we have MENSA level marketing experts that recommend people go play something else.

  16. The 3 month old 'CEO' needs a talking to! TBH he either sounds like a grifer's ALT or a14 year old that gets his rocks off by sending his underlings to thier deaths & rage quitting.
    A true 3 month old CEO is going to get his noob ship scammed sooner or later & any1whomtrusts a CEO under a year needs toknow thier 'boss' is not going toknowwhat heis talking about in somany areas o Eve its silly

  17. Everyone tells newbies to join a PC corp as soon as possible and then laugh and blow up someone who does. And then everyone wonders why when I log on there are 500+ people in the npc corp... Eve won't die because its a bad game. It will die because the only new subscribers it ever gets are goons from SA and testes from Reddit and then they'll have no one to fight.

    1. Everyone tells new player to join corps like RvB or Eve University... Not any odd corp.

  18. Jester, you are so good in writing lengthy and complete guides.

    Have you considered writing a "how to start playing EVE and not losing shitfit battleships" guide? Then your alliance members and other nullsec people could just link it to the recently killed people as material to read.

    However I tend to agree that that these guys are beyond saving. The conversations clearly show that this guy wasn't just worst at fitting a ship than I was at day 3 but also failed to understand the very basic rule of EVE "People will shoot at you for no other reason than your loot or killmail. Shoot back or don't get to their way."

    I also bought a battleship to my girlfriend when she started playing to avoid frustration in the first days (the tank of a Rokh is unbreakable by random highsec rats and destroyer lolgankers). But she knew without being told that going LOW-SECURITY space is a no-no, doing lvl 4 missions when she is struggling with lvl 2 is sure death and she even figured out that against frigate-destroyer-cruiser sized rats it's better to fit her Rokh with cruiser guns. She learned T2 drones before large hybrids all by herself. Some people have brain, others have not.

  19. Of course the game should allow to start ones own corporation so soon. I started my own corp even sooner, without problems.
    All the information you need is out in the internet. Just be informed and you will be fine. The uninformed will make huge mistakes even after many years, so time is not the factor here.

  20. It's so easy to say this game isn't for him, or they should have known better. The problem here is not that it was bad to shoot a newb, but that he DID ask questions and only received a-hole answers. I left EVE once in 2006 because it felt near impossible to find out anything from reading (not knowing about blogs and forums at the time), and asking for any type of help revealed this game to be rife with angry kids and a-holes. Only my desire for a spaceship game had me return after a few months and fortunately run into Eve University and then Agony.

    Unfortunately for this game, your "I'm not sure if I should be welcoming this sort of new blood" sentiment is the norm. This guy MAY or MAY NOT be good new blood, but with that dismissive attitude before people are able to learn anything we will never know. DUST will bring lots of newbs, and even more of this will happen and many more will leave before ever experiencing enough for them or us to know if they are a good fit.

  21. Hello Darsec here, I am not the "CEO" Nor did i send Starmaser to his death in Null, after i found out he lost his first ship i contacted him telling him to wait till he can get a jump clone and go to nul-sec
    but a corp member convinced him to go out yet again... offering Millions of isk to get there, After he lost his second ship i learned he didn't have insurance and no extra isk, If you contact him he will tell you that i bought him a Hookbill,then told him to stay to Hi-sec space.

    He still plays.
    Since i cannot link my name atm I will remain anon
    Darsec Tracer.

  22. Hi, actual CEO here. He was sent to his death in nullsec as a spy. I will be the first to admit we made a mistake here. Starmaser left our corp to join another that had been formed by someone who left us on bad terms and started poaching. He then rejoined; our mistake I supposed for giving a second chance.

    He had the bad sense to ask nosy questions after doing so, but that was his only sin. Suspicions built and he was punished unncessarily. Amends were made when we found out we'd made a mistake. I and others continue to help him and give advice. Tough lessons are best learned early.

    -Michael Ignis Archangel


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