Header art by Quendan Comari
In EVE Online, this massive multiplayer online role playing game, almost all travel happens through stargates which connect different regions of space.
Only alliances and large player corporations with long-term veteran players can travel using Titan bridges or by using capital jump drives; even then, they have to move cynos using stargates. Wormhole mechanics and scanning, even for some hardcore vets, might as well be voodoo. EVE players are used to these difficulties. It’s a hard game.
But today, while I was traveling through the region of Venal, at 12:51 EVE time, CCP crossed the red line by forcing me into virtual lockdown.
Unable to Use Stargates
On my screen I saw this message: 12:51:12 Info Server: ongoing disruption prevents this action. Disruption may persist for some time.
So, while creating some event for capsuleers living in highsec and lowsec, CCP managed to close all gates in nullsec as well. But by doing this, CCP has forgotten EVE is a sandbox game, as they advertise on their own website: “Experience space exploration, immense PvP and PvE battles and a thriving player economy in an ever-expanding sandbox.”
With many of us being forced into lockdown in real life due to Covid-19, EVE is a sort of escape from the grim reality of staying in a locked apartment, unable to move around freely. EVE is an escape, a place where we should be free to go anywhere we want to go.
Therefore, being forced into virtual digital lockdown by CCP, forced to stay in space in an empty system with nothing to do for hours, is really sick. Freedom of travel was the essence of this game; now it is gone, ruined, destroyed by CCP.
Most of us don’t pay our monthly dues for this game just to see the dudes at CCP sitting in their office having a laugh at capsuleers unable to use stargates – unable to use any tactics, strategies or enjoy the sandbox freedom that EVE Online has advertised.
We will not tolerate virtual lockdown.
Enough is enough.
Even if CCP turns stargates on later today or tomorrow, we all will have this thoughts sitting in our minds: What if the next time I warp my 10-20-50-100 billion jump freighter to a highsec gate from lowsec and I can’t get through? Will I have it reimbursed by CCP? What if my fleet or alliance member asks me for help and we can’t use stargates to help him? What if I assemble a fleet and try warping through a route I’ve used a dozen times to get into a fight and suddenly I can’t get through?
What if my titan won’t tether on a citadel?
What if I can’t dock back once I undock?
What’s next CCP?
Back to Controlled Gameplay
Recently the CCP dev team introduced EDENCOM cyno jammers, deployed by EDENCOM forces in lowsec systems. They greatly affected movement of goods to and from nullsec empires to the trading hub of Jita.
Does this move by CCP represent more freedom or less freedom? Does it get nullsec pilots more involved in the lowsec sandbox? It certainly does not. The Discord channels around EVE were filled with anger and frustration among jump freighter pilots responsible for doing logistics once those jammers appeared.
Getting around EVE in capital or supercapital ships became a real pain for many capsuleers.
Another example of controlled-vs-sandbox gameplay is the CCP creation, metaliminal storms.
Now, in order to live in nullsec – just to move around, go krabbing, or fighting – capsuleers have to keep in mind “weather conditions,” what type of storm is happening and where and how it affects gameplay.
EVE is already a hardcore game for newbies, with a lot of information to swallow and remember. All these new changes are just more extra pressure. When I first time jumped into nullsec 15 years ago, my heart was pumping, I was panicking, and I had no idea what to do and what was going on. Now, if someone told me my scan resolution is +20% because there is some shit-storm, I’d just laugh in his face. For hardcore vets, these storms are nothing but another means by CCP to affect their gameplay, forcing them to stockpile extra ships and fits to counter the effects from those storms. The storms do not give any extra positive player experience to either new or experienced players. So, what’s the point?
Now we see the CCP team initiating drastic changes and limiting freedom of travel in EVE. What is the CSM’s stance on these covert and direct actions?
What’s next, CCP?