This is a guide that is pretty much essential for Eve. Although it is unlikely that you will ever search for it directly, just as you are unlikely to search for a guide on how to breathe. The following is a collection of “opinions” that I wish I had known when I first started. Please note that these are opinions and not advice or a fool proof method of success or survival. If I was to offer advice then you may be inclined to hold me responsible for your Eve story.
Eve can be a harsh game for those unprepared. Quite simply the first rule of Eve should be “trust no one”. Although this seems a bit far-fetched, there are numerous stories about other players befriending you in order to cause you angst at some later date. This does not mean for an instant that you will not meet plenty of great people who you will likely forge enduring friendships with within Eve and even other games. But, if you prepare for the worst then it will be less devastating later on should you be unfortunate enough to become a hapless “victim”.
Given the sandbox nature of Eve, it allows for some incredibly interesting things to be experienced and observed. Oscar Wilde once said
Man is least himself when he talks in his own person. Give him a mask, and he will tell you the truth.
As every player effectively has the opportunity to wear a mask within Eve, it can often prove to be a window into the most honest display of humanity, both good and bad. This will be evident in every part of Eve. From mining in hisec, market trading to major conflicts in nullsec.
Never forget that you come into the game with nothing, or close to it. Quite possibly you have amassed a vast fortune, or at least vast to you. Perhaps you even had help getting set up from an affluent existing player. There are many ways to become rich in Eve but do not forget that it is only bytes and pixels in its simplest form. There is little point in being the richest person in the graveyard. So as pleasant as it can be to acquire space money do not forget to spend it.
Gaming can help you develop skills for real life. This is especially the case with Eve when you are part of a group. If anything Eve can offer a safe environment for you to try all manner of things. So set aside any misgivings you have for creating your own challenges. If you think you want to run a major corporation or alliance and that you are a natural leader, then go for it.
Knowledge is quite possibly the greatest asset you will ever have. With knowledge, you can start all over again with a lot less effort than when you started out. I still remember fondly my first destroyer in the game which was attained by doing tutorial missions and the like. I mean it was worth something like 1 million ISK. WOW! Then some kind folk taught me some additional skills. Although not a particularly glamorous start salvaging, especially in nullsec, is a lot more profitable than hisec mining will ever be.
Always have an exit strategy. If you should dare to seek the adventures that are offered by different types of space then make sure that you can get out without having to start from fresh. For instance, when I first went to null I took only a destroyer with salvaging modules on it. Everything else I simply left in hisec where it still sits today. The thinking behind this was that if my nullsec adventure should go awry then I could simply return to the comparative safety of hisec and remain relatively unscathed.
Your name is everything. If you want to smack talk, grief or harass people then that is your call. But it will be carried with you forever and may greatly affect the game-play options that are available to you. Of course, you can always biomass and start all over again should you choose to.
Dying in Eve should be embraced. The sooner you are able to deal with this aspect the sooner you will find that new opportunities will present themselves. Death in Eve is not permanent. It is prudent to consider the common phrase “do not undock what you cannot afford to lose”.
The “real end boss” within Eve will be the one you craft for yourself. You could easily just join a group of like-minded folk and inherit their end boss instead. So much of Eve is based on the stories that we as players create for ourselves. These stories will often unfold at a pace more in line with our real lives. So do not expect instant gratification in complex stories each time you log in. In fact, many of the best stories in Eve play out elsewhere. In the many forums, social platforms and news sites that all exist as a consequence of Eve.
Real life first. As with any form of gaming, it is important to remember that it is just that, a game. Any investment you make with any game should be balanced with the investment you also make in your real life.