YULAI, Jan 6, YC 120 – CONCORD and Project Discovery have launched a new research initiative. Its purpose is to “compare the accuracy of the current universal timebase” with newly-developed instruments for measuring time. The research team, headed up by Dr. Holnar Reniret, intends to conducts its research in multiple locations around New Eden. Today’s foray saw them travel to Luminaire, “to collaborate with a team of Gallente scientists.”
The event also marked a new chapter in EVE Online’s Live Event program after last year’s staffing shake-up. Coming in the wake of EVE Vegas, the layoffs left the Community Team bare. As a result, some players have worried about the future of Live Events in EVE. This event is set to help to ease those fears.
This event started off routine, but amusing. After greeting the capsuleers of Yulai, the team set out for Luminaire in a pair of Enforcer-class force recon cruisers. Along the way, they discussed… public relations, of a sort.
[ 2018.01.06 20:50:24 ] EVE System > Channel changed to Local : Ourapheh
Holnar Reniret > We are headed to celebrate the new year with a very important experiment in Luminaire. All are welcome to assist.
EVE System > Channel changed to Local : Botane
Holnar Reniret > ahem, hello capsuleers of Botane
Naava Edios > Another fine day for arresting Criminals Kill: Samantha Nierdu (Megathron)
Lorienne Nesif > Our Project Discovery is en route to Luminaire for some experiments. Anyone interested in science may join us!
Holnar Reniret > oh, yes, and happy YC120 to all, of course
EVE System > Channel changed to Local : Erme
Holnar Reniret > uff… do I have to say it all the way through?
Lorienne Nesif > Yes, doctor, you do.
Lorienne Nesif > We wish to celebrate!
Holnar Reniret > right. Ahem, greetings capsuleers! Happy YC120! We are headed to Luminaire for some experiments and to celebrate the new year!
Holnar Reniret > please, join us!
Holnar Reniret > greetings, miss Nissa Redding
EVE System > Channel changed to Local : Du Annes
Holnar Reniret > ok, they are the same ones from a minute ago, this is silly…
Lorienne Nesif > Hello capsuleers of Du Annes. A Project Discovery research team is heading to Luminaire for science. Any interested are welcome to join us!
Holnar Reniret > uff… Yes capsuleers! Happy YC120! Please join us in Luminaire!
EVE System > Channel changed to Local : Pettinck
Lorienne Nesif > Just this last one, doctor, you’re doing great!
Holnar Reniret > alright…
Holnar Reniret > Capsuleers of New Eden, happy YC120! Please, join us in our celebratory experiments in Luminaire!
Holnar Reniret > was that good?
Lorienne Nesif > That was fine, doctor.
Once in Luminaire, the team moved on to Gallente Prime, where they planned to conduct experiments into… well. I’ll let Officer Nesif and Dr. Reniret explain (because I still have some questions, myself).
[ 2018.01.06 21:03:24 ] Lorienne Nesif > Hello capsuleers. My name is Lorienne Nesif. It is good to meet you all! Thank you for joining us in this event. Today is more than just a science experiment, it is also a celebration of the Yoiul Conference.
Lyken Des > Wooo
Lorienne Nesif > This year marks the 120th since CONCORD’s standard calendar was established at the Yoiul Conference. As some of you might know, the Yoiul Conference itself has its anniversary on June 26.
Lorienne Nesif > Even though that conference established the interstellar calendar we use today, that date doesn’t mark the change of the year. Would anyone like to say why this is?
Lorienne Nesif > Every planet has its own conception of time, and these are still practiced by planet-dwelling citizens to this day. But in this interstellar age, we needed a standardized time that everyone, no matter where you are from, could follow.
Lorienne Nesif > In every corner of New Eden, we were finding records of a spacefaring civilization before ours. They used a calendar that established a year as 365 24-hour days, divided into 12 months.
Lorienne Nesif > It didn’t matter where you were from, or what language the records were in. One calendar, one time. Well, if it worked for them, it would work for us!
Lorienne Nesif > So, you can thank our ancestors for giving us this month of January, and February, and March, and all the rest.
Lorienne Nesif > Anyway. We are joined today by Dr. Holnar Reniret of Project Discovery. Say hello, Dr. Reniret!
Holnar Reniret > Oh, right, yes. Ahem… hello.
Lorienne Nesif > Dr. Reniret, would you please let us know what exactly you will be doing today? What is the nature of these tests, and what impact do you think your research will have on New Eden?
Holnar Reniret > Well, sure.
Holnar Reniret > Ahem, so, as you may know, all timekeeping devices and networks need a measurement of reference that can be easily replicated and is always consistent no matter the place or the time.
Holnar Reniret > The systems that CONCORD and all empires use today work quite finely, but it has been noticed in the last few decades that the sheer dimensions of the space colonized by humanity may cause issues with the measurments of reference.
Holnar Reniret > For example, in the Amarr and Minmatar space the presence of massive nebulas can produce distortions in gravity-based, or even electromagnetic-based measurements.
Holnar Reniret > Also, it appears that infinitesimal differences in the timespace lattice in different regions of space can also produce very small deviations in almost every kind of precise measurements.
Holnar Reniret > While this is almost unnoticeable for all other intense[sic] and purposes, timekeeping references need to be as precise as possible. What we are trying to do today is to test a technology that will allow to have a consistent measurement of reference with
Holnar Reniret > the highest precision ever attempted across not only all New Eden… but hopefully well beyond.
And of course, Dr. Reniret did his best to endear himself to the audience with his charm and wit:
Alen Asques > Does the time swirl the other way on the other side of the planet?
Holnar Reniret > So… yes, that’s what we are going to do.
Lorienne Nesif > We’ve already got one question for you, doctor. What would you say to Mr. Asques?
Holnar Reniret > Alen Asques no
Lorienne Nesif > Don’t be rude, doctor. You can give more than a single word answer.
Holnar Reniret > Ahem, right. It’s an interesting question mr Alen Asques . To which the answer is no.
I won’t lie: I laughed.
No live event is really complete without conflict, though. In fact, it’s something many felt was missing from the Coronation of Empress Catiz (which went off smoothly). This time, though, we got a couple of different layers of activity. And in both cases, they raise questions within the lore.
The first disruption came at the hands of a trio of capsuleers named The Astromancer, Nheil Kharan, and Therik Mot. They warped in, locked up the CONCORD NPCs, and started to attack. Of course, the CONCORD pilots called for help, and the assembled players responded. All three kills can be found on zkill. What can’t be found on zkill (or on evewho) is the first really interesting thing:
According to their in-game history, these three characters have been rattling around for as much as 47 years. It hints at something deeper going on, as do these lines from The Astromancer as the attack run began:
[ 2018.01.06 21:13:16 ] The Astromancer > Well well, CONCORD finally made it with their ancient trinkets. Are you really going through with your useless efforts, doc?
The Astromancer > I guess we’ll just have to show how broken this system you so desperately cling to is.
But that’s not all The Astromancer gave us to think about.
Six minutes after the attack began, and five minutes after it ended, came the second quirk: Lancers.
Lancers (the NPCs formerly known as Circadian Seekers) can appear anywhere, at any time. There’s no real shock when they do. This is especially true when there are corpses on-field, and The Astromancer did end up podded. He was, however, carrying a unit of Corrupted Trinary Relics in his hold. The relics were a drop in an Agency event a few months back. They come…from Drifter wrecks.
And then a Drifter arrived. At that point, the CONCORD NPCs withdrew.
Drifters aren’t known for their friendliness. This Drifter, though, didn’t attack anyone. In fact, it warped off to the Caldari Monument in-system, and most of the assembled capsuleers followed. Over the next half hour, the capsuleers poked and prodded at it in various ways. Other than destroying a Reaper that fired first, the Drifter remained passive. Half an hour later, a second Drifter arrived, and was also passive, despite capsuleers crawling all over them like fleas.
Eventually, a fleet from Arataka Research Consortium arrived to destroy both. Both battleships had their overshields, but neither one fired the Doomsday. This is not normal behavior.
It’s still unclear exactly what all this means. Did the Drifters show up because of the Relics? Or were they just a random result? For that matter, why were they so passive? It’s too early to tell.
The Return of Live Events
One thing is certain, though: This brings CCP back into the storytelling game in a way they haven’t been for most of the past year. A follow-up news post indicates that the plotline will be continuing. So there’s a reasonable expectation of appearances by the same actors in other parts of space. Could CONCORD and Project Discovery even come out to null-sec? Only time will tell.
The run-up to this event was low-key, with only a single posting to the World News channel. As a result, the crowd was also relatively small. In Yulai, the system averaged between 12 and 24 players during the run-up. Still, the signs are good that as CCP eases back into Live Events, they’ll be more visible throughout the community.
All together, it’s a good sign that CCP is committed to keeping their end of EVE’s story in motion. That’s important for more than just the roleplayers. All of the major mechanical and ‘technical’ developments in recent years, from citadels to force auxiliaries, have been tied into the lore. When EVE’s story completely bogs down, CCP’s implementation of new toys slows down with it. This scenario went off pretty well, and it’s given us a lot to think about and look forward to. So welcome back Live Events! We’re looking forward to what’s still to come.