Friday, 22 April 2016

Keynotes, addiction and gone(again)

Well I didn't think it was going to be easy. But I didn't think it would be this hard. Just one more tweet, one more Twitch stream and err... one more blog post. Bloody hell leaving Eve is hard. But we must persist because this is just the detritus of addiction. Tell you what, why don't I just lie on the virtual couch and you can be my virtual therapist pretending to take notes. Be gentle with me.

So Fanfest. Actually no, before that Iceland. Iceland is a very curious place. If you peel away all the good manners, sense of humour, disastrous fish recipes, the weather and the appealing Nordic vibe, you left with a banana republic. A country that so heavily gamed the neoliberal doctrine that the Dutch and British were forced to use anti terrorist legislation to stop their banks running off with the money when the inevitable crash came. The banks had become too big to fail for an island with a population smaller than your average chinese town and the cost has been heavy. Well heavy for some. As the Panama Papers are showing, a disproportionate  number of Icelandic citizens managed to squirrel away their money into offshore accounts since the crash. CCP didn't escape the tsunami either as the Icelandic currency (ISK) crashed, which combined with the Incarna madness led to layoffs and closed offices.

I mention this because CCP Hilmar raised this in the opening ceremony at Fanfest because the Panama Papers have resulted in protests that have involved up to 10% of Iceland's population and are still going on. Since April 2015, the Icelandic Pirate Party have consistently polled above 30%, This is more than the other two largest parties combined. Neoliberalism may be broken but the revolution isn't finished yet. If there is a lesson here it is to never go full neoliberal. I found it an interesting counterpoint to what was to follow in the Keynote speech.

CCP Seagull gave what was probably her most polished performance to date. The triumphs of the last year are genuine and deserve to be celebrated. But it all predictably became rather unconvincing once we hit the CSM. CSM10 was wonderful but it wasn't apparently. But nevermind because it will fine next time. Except oh..

About a 40% reduction in the vote overall. This is people who had voted in previous years but are now choosing not to. So a fantastic result from my perspective. The Icelandic Pirate Party would be pleased with that too I would suspect. Ignore at your peril CCP. CCP Seagull put on a brave face. While voter turnout was rather low it is "still strong enough to give us a council". Enter the council...

LOL. So basically with a couple of exceptions including some ex Imperium refugees we've got a bunch of Lowsec ship spinners and blobbers who like to opine about Null a lot but don't like using supercaps or living there. Good luck with that CCP. 

Seagull moves swiftly on and announces a capsuleer day on May 6th. Free podskins fireworks and launchers to help anesthetise our minds from what we have just heard. It sort of works but of it seems a missed opportunity too. Shouldn't this be more player driven? No big deal though because free stuff I guess. "It will only get more exciting from here!" she says. And it does. If libraries get your juices running there is a new book. OK maybe not but it does look a good book. But books don't melt trit beams and the momentum is going in the same direction as the CSM vote. And this is a shame because next we get told about a mobile Eve app. Cool. This is good. RIP Eve Droid though. 

Then we get to the roadmap. This was odd. It reminded me of the old Microsoft help joke. The one where you are flying around in the fog in a plane trying to find out where you are. You see a Microsoft building and shout for help. They respond by telling you that you are in a plane. It was that odd. She told us where we are and no more. So there is no roadmap. What she did do is launch into the neoliberal vision that has underpinned the game design for a few years now. Player owned this and that. Less CCP state intervention. Outsourcing (aka putting in the hands of players) and so on and so forth. Now as we know and as Iceland is demonstrating replacing design with doctrine is not sustainable. Bubbles form and they burst and you can already see the symptoms in Eve with the markets and where the wealth now sits. The Imperium or what is left of them are acutely aware of that right now. But it won't be the (in game) monied that will suffer. Eventually they will become too big to fail and CCP will have to intervene when things go titsup. It won't be pretty. 

Anyway, moving on...Seagull decides to go on the offensive and launches her Titans Larrikin and Fozzie to explain the roadmap that isn't a roadmap. We get a beautiful citadel video to throw us off the scent. But it is still awkward. So much has been done for so few people because with the exception of the market handicapped medium citadels and subtypes this is eye candy is only for the monied players. And they will probably blow the medium citadels off the map anyway. Larrikin concludes by saying he has no idea what the players are going to do. Clearly he's not been to central Reykjavik lately. But he declares CCP will be ready in manner similar to that of Lehmans Brothers when said they only had a minor problem with subprime mortgages. So that's ok then...

Having dealt with Citadels, CCP's leading economists turned their attention to the Rorqual. Most people can't remember what the Rorqual was for. They could have just deleted it. But apparently we need it now. Except most people don't, but it was a good excuse to make a cool ORE video so we will take that. Struggling the economists play their final card. MOAR TITANS. Again cool but again another thing that most players will never fly. 

So the roadmap Seagull outsourced to the economists turns out to be merely bling and win buttons for rich kids for the foreseeable future. Yes there was a good section on NPE. Yes the expansion trailer was almost good. Terrible music though. Just cringing. Awful. I really could have done better myself.

And that was it. Nothing mentioned about SP so clearly there is going to be much more of that coming into the game because it wasn't mentioned at last fanfest or Eve Vegas either.

So absolutely no reason for me to continue and actually not a lot for most people as it turns out. It doesn't make Eve a bad game overnight and for a select few it will be a great game for a while. And now I really am leaving. Twitter, Discord, Slack accounts deactivated. Email soon to follow. I'll keep the blog up until the traffic dies off so strip the articles that you need - that includes those dudes in Iceland who seem to follow my Serenity posts with interest. Guys it's Tiancity. Your partners. Just bloody talk to them. Same goes for Soundcloud. Download what you need. It's free to use and I am not precious about it. 

Take care and Fly safe (again)

Luobote Kong



  1. Fly safe, you've been a delight to read.

  2. Great post Luobote, bitter but true.
    I also find it increasingly difficult to justify my subscription, really don't like the direction Eve/CCP is taking.

  3. Hello. My name is Crash. I'm an EVE addict. I've been sober for six weeks, but I can't stop thinking about EVE. I find myself reading blogs and waking up very early to watch the livestream. I know that EVE isn't the solution. I know that CCP will never deliver the sort of high that it used to. And yet, here I am, posting a comment on the EVE blog of a fellow addict.

    Fly Safe, Luobote.

  4. They're lowing the taxes.

    But not by much.

    1. And said they would raise them later. At least they were open about that. The principle still stands. Bend the knee and go to the company store or be penalised. Or play something else instead.

      I am actually quite shocked at how Fanfest has focussed on such a narrow player base now. CCP must obviously believe that is all the game is about. It's the only real way to explain what basically will have been 2 and a half years of predominantly null development. There have been some exceptions but they have been eclipsed by this doctrine and SP nonsense. And yet few people live in Null still despite the glamour of the war. My parting bet. The first XL Citadel will be built in Highsec not Null. I predicted that back in November for the record.

    2. I wish I could disagree.

      *rests head in hands*.

      There's just...nothing for me.

      Well, that's not true: there's bad stuff: End of Moonmining, End of Titan/PoS Stuff.

      There's just no "won't this be cool".

      I just feel tired of Eve right now. No good changes, so many bad things coming. Is there any point extracting things from the mess that they're developing into?

      I'd take the bet if the answer was in doubt.

      It isn't.

      Ahh well.

      I should ask, are you keeping your account, or is it going to be sacrificed to the Plex4Good whatever?

      (Can I have your stuff :P)

      o7 Rob.

    3. Well obviously I empathise. The moon mining thing was a bit leftfield too. My stuff? Genuinely hadn't thought about it. I liquidated almost everything prior to the tax and SP announcement to prepare for the HiSec markets being outsourced to the oligarchs. So only got ISK, a couple of HiSec systems worth of POCO's and some flotsam and jetsam scattered about. I could donate it and I have a strong idea where it would go but it would mean logging in. And I have no plans to fall off the waggon and do that :). Will miss your comments but I no doubt see your posts elsewhere. o7