| Mail |
You might also like: WoW Insider, Joystiq, and more

Reader Comments (30)

Posted: Apr 3rd 2011 6:42PM Greyjoy said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
I think you will find that even though the majority of people in the MMO world see Eve as an absolutely amazing MMO and one that many wish the big AAA companies would use as inspiration, most people feel the time you have to invest in Eve just to be able to get to a part that is fun is quite difficult to justify in this busy metropolitan world we now live in.

The idea of jumping 20 jumps to join a corporation in 0.0 space, is a perfect example. And the time it can take to complete a simple PvE mission and salvage all the ships.

It is these things which put many MANY people off playing Eve.

For example I just resubscribed and tried out the new Planetary interaction abilities. I spent the better part of my entire evening just placing everything on the planet and setting everything up, just to find it actually didn't really make much for me anyhow. It is that long term fun issue that puts many people off.

But if you ever changed that in Eve, I think you would break what makes the game so unique and amazing, but unfortunately is another reason so many can't find a niche to enjoy in it

Posted: Apr 4th 2011 11:51AM MaddZ said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@Greyjoy

For me the greatest annoyance will always be salvage, and its a good deal of why I quit. I loved playing EVE, but it got to the point where there wasn't a single thing I could do in a reasonable amount of time. I have a T2/faction fitted Abaddon that gets the job done, but having to come back and salvage the mission (while profitable) is distinctly un-fun, and results in me spending ridiculous amounts of time just looting my kills.
Reply

Posted: Apr 4th 2011 2:16PM Jack Kevorkian said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@MaddZ so find a way where you dont need to do it. Fleet up with a salvage guy or simply abandon the product.
Reply

Posted: Apr 4th 2011 7:33PM MaddZ said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@Jack Kevorkian

I eventually went with abandoning the wrecks, and hated every potential missed big item.

I tried getting a salvager, but I have such strange hours, it just didn't work. It was really frustrating to find that there wasn't one thing I could truly do solo if I just wanted to log on for a half hour or so. Oh well, I guess I'm not really the target audience in that case. Such a shame, I miss my Abaddon :-(
Reply

Posted: Apr 3rd 2011 6:43PM Greyjoy said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
I think the best way to phrase how Eve is, is that the idea of what you can do and achieve in Eve never reflects what it takes to achieve ingame

Much like real life, and many play games to escape real life

Posted: Apr 3rd 2011 11:11PM kgptzac said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
Well said. Other than Eve's gameplay being non-conventional compare to most other MMOs out there, new players have to cope with a harsh or even hostile environment before they can get into a group of similar pilots. Unfortunately even with the late boon of the MMO industry, MMO player base doesn't grow indefinitely, and those who tried and got turned off by Eve may already decided to ignore the game for the rest of its longevity. I wish Incarna is a polished olive branch that may one day become the "bridge" of newcomers and the core gameplay of Eve Online.

Posted: Apr 3rd 2011 11:16PM Paradigm68 said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
Aside from everything else "with so many players in one game universe, people form very real ties with each other." is how I feel every MMO should be. And its sad that so few are.

Posted: Apr 3rd 2011 11:19PM EdmundDante said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
I believe one pitfall game developers can fall into is the castle court pitfall. What I mean by this is all the game designers and devs all go to the same court everyday - their office-building, and the ideas of development can be a narrow focus - often influenced strongly by a few persuasive individuals in key positions. But the ideas are localized and may not be as applicable as development teams would like to believe. The King of the court - also spending most of his time in the court proceedings - also is swayed more heavily by everyone in the court and no one outside of it.

Thus I think the role CSM has played can be key - in trying to get the devs and the King to step outside the court and listen to other views and design possibilities not their own - not localized to what they've been hearing in their court building day in day out.

The last CSM - did this I think successfully - as we now are seeing some small changes but pretty important to players get implemented via reiteration and a dev team being assigned to - perhaps play outside the court for awhile. These iterations - and small changes have been pretty welcome by the player base.

Another pitfall that game development can fall into is sheer size that creates drag on development, and inability to effectively focus on what actually will be "fun" for the game. The Development court gets bogged down into development issues - refactoring code, compatibility, prizes and marketing schemes. Where all this is certainly important - what seems to go by the wayside is actually making the game "fun". You can have the best cod ein the world, the most compatible platform ever - but if you don't think about the "fun" factor - your game is going to run out of steam.

(Fun also includes of course how much your game supports the social structure within the game.)

Posted: Apr 3rd 2011 11:31PM smg77 said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
The last few expansions have been basically PvE content which doesn't play to Eve's strength as a PvP game. I think that's why subscriptions have peaked when the expansions are released and then people quickly unsub when they see that there's nothing new in terms of combat.

Incarna is going to be a yawn and Dust is going to fail if it actually gets released so they really need to find something that enhances the core Eve gameplay

Hopefully with a cohesive, like-minded group of people on the CSM (except for Trebor lol) The CSM will have a real chance at influence. CSM 4 got the terms extended to a full year and got stakeholder status and then CSM 5 blew it with a bunch of nonsense and drama.

Posted: Apr 4th 2011 5:24PM Dblade said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@smg77 there's really not much they can do to change or advance PvP. Most of the PvP crowd want bug or balance fixes on the one hand, or impossible changes on the other. No one can make lowsec or FW work without making it exploitable, for one.

PvE was the only way they staved off it dropping even more.
Reply

Posted: Apr 3rd 2011 11:59PM (Unverified) said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
Most companies would figure out what they do well and what is successful, take those ideas, and run with them. CCP does this very well on the technology side, but seems to miss the point on the game development. It takes dedicated passionate players to thrive in EVE by design. They should support these players with their expansions. If they keep trying for the casual player, they will lose what is successful and keeps players paying every month. They are also behind the curve on a lot of things, take EveGate for example. The time of the "walled garden" approach for community development is over, new models are Apples "ap store" or other open development concepts. I think it comes from insular leadership, they need to open their eyes and take a look at what they are creating, not just the next deadline.

Posted: Apr 4th 2011 1:51AM Yukon Sam said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
If EVE wants to be a niche product, it should strive to be the best it can be by capitalizing on the strengths it has within its niche.

If EVE wants to be mass-market, it needs to appeal to a much wider segment of the gaming populace.

Frankly, I hope they keep it niche, because it's a solid product that seems to falter and stall whenever it aspires to be anything greater than what it is. It might be better to die a slow death of attrition than to compromise the soul of a game to appease the fickle masses.

Unless you own stock.

Posted: Apr 4th 2011 2:51AM (Unverified) said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
eve is alright. been playing on and off since beta. i was really stoked about resubbing this time around, but ive already cancelled my sub 1 month in.

- i was really disappointed with fanfest news
- FW and 0.0 are still trash; in fact, pvp has gotten worse somehow

there's simply nothing interesting on the horizon, except new nebulas and pretty turret effects. most people dont care to play dress-up in the captain's quarters; they released that "future" trailer in which Dust and Eve are integrated, but we all know that this wont happen for another few years

Posted: Apr 4th 2011 10:39AM DarkWalker said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
EVE is a niche game due to it's design choices.

While I admire what the developers have done, I would never subscribe to EVE in it's current shape: I can't stand the idea of not having any really safe zones from PvP, or the amount of loss a defeat can bring to a player. And, while I like MMOs, I like to strike out by myself in the virtual world, something EVE does not really support; players outside corporations are at a huge disadvantage.

Those are characteristics where I believe I'm aligned with the majority of MMO players out there. Extensive PvP and drastic consequences for losing are not really popular (just look at which games draw most players, and how MMOs developed across the years regarding those aspects)

The grouping aspect is even more complicated. I would bet most MMO players are not really cut to be either leaders or traditional followers. I, myself, while I can lead in a pinch, I really dislike the responsibility that comes with it; but at the same time, in a game, I won't ever go to a guild/corporation/etc and fill a membership application, and even if I'm scouted I'm likely to refuse any group that presumes to make demands of me (not that I won't help a group, I give plenty of help, but only willingly; the moment the group starts to demand my help is the moment I leave).

Even if you consider me to be an exception, there's still the problem that leaders are rare, and their organizational capabilities are not unlimited. There are only so many other players each leader can organize and direct. If there are more followers in the game than the competent leaders are able to guide, the game itself needs to provide for those leaderless followers, else they will grow disappointed with the game and leave. And EVE definitely does not provide good enough options for leaderless followers.

Crazy idea here - get a few good trainers to teach leadership skills to willing players, perhaps by setting up some kind of on-line EVE-themed leadership training. If part of EVE's growth problem is lack of sufficient players with leadership skills, this might be a fairly cheap way to improve the situation.

Posted: Apr 4th 2011 2:24PM Calfis said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@DarkWalker

As an EVE player, making absolutely 'safe zones' from PVP would be akin to making EVE 'Hello Kitty Online' so no thanks. I like that the harsh environment of EVE keeps away most of the 'carebear' players who would rather play MMOs with little consequences. Honestly any player who can't HTFU should not be playing EVE.

Even as a niche product subs have been growing over the years to the point were 2000 and 3000 man PVP battles between huge player-run coalitions are becoming an increasing problem for devs. Maybe if they can't fix that then subs will decline but that might be a good thing considering that coalitions love to recruit new cannon fodder to add to the lagfests.
Reply

Posted: Apr 4th 2011 2:44PM DarkWalker said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@Calfis
I was not clear enough.

I wasn't suggesting that EVE should reduce it's focus in PvP; I was just pointing that, although I think it's a great game, players like me will never play a game with such harsh PvP environment as EVE.

Being a niche game is not necessarily a bad thing. EVE is the main example of that. For players that want harsh death penalties, combined with either very good economy, a space scenario, or quite advanced "guilds" (corporations), I don't think there is a better game.

Besides, someone has to cater to those niche players :)

But being a niche game means it's potential user base is limited, compared with the genre at large. I obviously don't have the numbers here, but I wouldn't be surprised if someone told me the potential player base for a game with harsh death penalties, such as EVE, was less than 10% of the potential MMO potential player base. EVE could be the best game in the world by a wide margin, it's design choices would still prevent it from ever attaining a large share of the MMO genre.
Reply

Posted: Apr 4th 2011 2:46PM DarkWalker said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@DarkWalker

BTW, this is directly relevant to the article. A game designed as a niche game can't really hope to retain many non-niche players. I believe this explains most of EVE's player retention problem.
Reply

Posted: Apr 4th 2011 5:27PM Dblade said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@Calfis Uh, most low and null are filled with carebears. It's actually safer to mine in null than in hisec, because people can't get to you as easily, or wardec you. Even the random ship deaths dont matter, because you make more ISK than they can blow up.

EVE is hello kitty online with a denial problem. Mixed with a FPS.
Reply

Posted: Apr 5th 2011 10:26AM DarkWalker said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@Dblade

In my own case, the main problem is the loss from dying.

I like playing reckless, throwing myself head first into challenges to see if I can emerge the victor. Harsh death penalties, like EVE has, don't cater to that play style at all; I like the challenge, not the menace of losing too much character progression due to a single death.

One SW:TOR dev nailed it when he said gear loss at death means lots of players will never use their really good gear, except to try it in the bank, always using common and easily replaceable gear for doing anything with even a speck of risk. I'm this kind of player.

I agree EVE can be fairly safe. But playing safe in EVE (or any other game) is too boring for me.
Reply

Posted: Apr 5th 2011 1:40PM Calfis said

  • 2 hearts
  • Report
@Dblade

I guess my problem is that I never really mined so losing say a Vagabond does hurt for me. Nor does my current situation (banished to WH 0.0 because ex-sov holding alliance was beaten out of 0.0) allow me any steady income. I only attempt to make money (thru ratting) when it is necessary.

You are right, null is full of carebears and this is good since they make for ample target opportunities (I have a static hole to 0.0). At least they are the type of carebear that has the balls to put themselves out there. (Most still feel its too dangerous even with the rewards) Knowing a few of those said carebears from former alliances I've been in, even if they can make back say that Orca they just lost, it still hurts. It means that X amount of time you are mining for the new Orca isn't profit but time you are working for the guy that just ganked you.

For people who are really mining (not bots) or trying to earn an honest isk in null, it really isn't watching TV while mining like it is in high sec, they do have to pay attention and fly protection fleets (that are usually woefully inadequate and PVE fit). Sure they are still carebears but at least they try. Its too bad CCP will be nerfing the space rent, but on the other hand that should make the losses even more tear inducing than they already are for most.
Reply

Featured Stories

Engadget

Engadget

Joystiq

Joystiq

WoW Insider

WoW

TUAW

TUAW