This piece is intended to give new or even veteran players an idea of what life in Goonswarm Federation is like from the perspective of a new member. However before I discourse at great length about life in Goonswarm and the Imperium, I would like to take a moment to explain where I have come from as a self-indulgent attempt at highlighting the path I have taken in EVE in order to bolster confidence in new players who are looking to dive straight into a large alliance.
FROM PUBBIE TO SCRUBBIE
It was a cold winter night in 2011 when I first discovered EVE Online, I had done my research and everything I read made the game sound like a dream come true. The ceaseless warnings of a steep learning curve didn’t deter me at all, every game I had ever played that was labelled as having a steep learning curve was generally more punishing than it was difficult to learn; how hard could EVE be?
So with that mindset, I booted up EVE Online for the first time and began playing. After following what little tutorial there was, I began aimlessly running missions and trying to decipher the overwhelming amount of information being thrown at me. I often found myself wondering, “Okay, what do I do now?” often with no sense of direction or idea on where to go next.
I didn’t make it through my free trial, you see I made the biggest mistake a new player can make – I tried to play alone. Over the next few months after my first attempt at playing, I would often think of EVE. I kept reading about it, I was clueless but I could already tell that if I was able to punch through that first barrier then I would find the game I was promised – an unforgiving sandbox full of opportunity.
Eventually, I gave in and paid for a subscription and decided to commit to understanding this monster of a game. This time, however, I wasn’t going to repeat my previous mistakes, I would find a corporation that would take me under their wing and answer my endless questions. I found my first home in a high-sec corporation that focused on light-hearted PvP – diving into null sec and whelping fleets over a few beers and laughs.
One of the directors of the corporation took it upon themselves to mentor me in everything EVE, he opened the door to everything EVE had to offer a new player. Slowly, I began to tackle the task of understanding EVE Online. After playing for a few months, I realised that once you grasped the concepts of the game – it became easy to learn new skills and mechanics. All it took to get there was the help of a friendly corporation and some dedicated members.
IT’S A CAREBEARS LIFE
As the months passed on my new corporation slowly began to die down, a lot of the members becoming burned out after years of playing. In replacement, I had created my own corporation and started to recruit friends into the game and was now showing them the ropes. We spent the next few years living in high-sec, exploring everything from mining to incursions; we were learning and we were content with our position in the universe.
Eventually, we decided to try our hand at null-sec life, the foreboding wasteland full of space cowboys and lawless psychopaths. We ended up joining a small corporation who were a part of an alliance of little relevance. They were renters you see, and renters rarely have the infrastructure required to offer a fulfilling experience. It wasn’t long before my friends and myself were demoralised and decided to take an extended break from EVE Online.
GRR GONS HAT GONS
It was a long time before our little hapless group of carebears decided to return to EVE. One night on discord while reminiscing on days past, I put forward the idea of returning to EVE Online. Why not? We all loved the game and it had been far too long. This time, we were going to do something different; we still wanted to live in null-sec but this time we would try to join one of the big alliances.
As a lurker of the Something Awful forums back in their prime, I was always well aware of goons and their reputation as honourable citizens. I had always followed their antics in EVE Online and read the slander and false propaganda of their enemies. It was time for us to finally join their ranks.
As observers from the outside, I had no idea what to expect once breaking through all the smoke and mirrors of the public word of mouth. With a friend, we applied to Eternity INC. in Goonswarm Federation, after a brief application process we were accepted. This is where our journey as goons began.
I had no idea what to expect once I pierced the smoke and mirrors cast by the community of gamers who regularly disparaged Goonswarm Federation. Upon joining the alliance I was half expecting to join an endless tidal wave of mouth-breathing neckbeards with the social aptitude of a Call of Duty player. What I found, however, was that I was surrounded by some of the nicest, highly intelligent gamers I had ever had the chance of playing EVE with.
It seemed like everyone I spoke to was a scientist, lawyer, or completing some form of PhD. Everyone I engaged with inside my corporation and within the Imperium coalition as a whole was extremely eager to get me involved in the numerous activities the coalition had to offer – with plenty of members extending a helping hand without hesitation or prompt.
GOONS ARE DEAD
My main motivation for joining Goonswarm Federation was the desire to have access to all forms of content EVE Online has to offer. In my first week, I discovered that the alliance can offer this in spades. No matter what your ambitions, there is a place for every form of gameplay within Goonswarm.
The alliance offers a structured community with a subset organisational tree focused on different areas of EVE Online. For each career path in EVE, there is a group in Goonswarm Federation that focuses purely on that initiative. With a quick application, you can be surrounded by hundreds of players interested in doing the same things you are.
With these groups also comes a wealth of knowledge that is freely shared by veteran players who have already made the mistakes and learned from them. For the new player, there are plenty of resources to become acquainted with your chosen career path and teams of mentors ready to take you under their wing.
No matter your focus, you can always be assured that you will find a place within the alliance where you can grow and become a master of your craft. The whole process is sped up significantly by the regular training classes offered by the alliance and extensive documentation on the alliance wiki and forums.
ONE FOR ALL
Goonswarm Federation has built an alliance focused culture, no one corporation’s agenda is given precedence in alliance initiatives. What’s good for the alliance is good for you, and everything that is pursued is done for the benefit of the alliance as a whole. This culture keeps corporations mingling and working together as an alliance instead of segregating off into their own private parties with selfish ambitions.
I have found that during my time in the alliance I have spent more time socialising and playing with members of other corporations than my own, which is highly due to the nature of the alliance culture. Between your own corporation, the various groups you can join, and the vast amount of social channels available – your time is spent with a varied group of people all working towards alliance based goals.
The benefit of this culture is that even if you join one of the smaller corporations, or like me, you play during a dead timezone – the sheer amount of players within the alliance means you will always have plenty of people to play with. There is content 24/7 and a constant smorgasbord of activities to participate in.
WHAT DO I DO NOW?
I have been a part of Goonswarm Federation for a little over a month now. In that time I have taken part in over 40 fleets, blown up countless enemy structures, evicted a neighbouring alliance from their space, been a part of several epic large scale fights, taken part in Burn Jita, and gained a wealth of knowledge.
EVE Online is 95% mundane chores and 5% heart pounding thrills. Since joining Goonswarm Federation those percentages have flipped and hours of exciting content are just a fleet invitation away at any time of day. Never do I find myself asking what that naive pubbie from years ago did regularly, what do I do now isn’t even a relevant question; there’s always something to do.
If you are a new player trying to decide how best to tackle this monster of a game, or an experienced player looking for a fresh start and a breath of fresh air in your gameplay – you might consider joining Goonswarm Federation.