I realize that, for 99.9% of capsuleers in New Eden, the appropriate response to such a declaration is something along the lines of “Who even are you?” For me though, it’s a big deal.
I joined the game in early 2018, jumped quickly into null-sec life in the Imperium, and signed on with INN to finance my “getting blown up in space” habit. I served as a line member and roving correspondent during the big war in mid-late 2018 (did we ever figure out what to call it? I always favored “The War in the North,” but at the time I left, nothing had caught on).
After that, things quieted down in New Eden, just as they were heating up for me in Real Life. It was too much to handle, so I had to go “win Eve” for awhile. But I always figured that someday I’d be back.
I puttered around with other diversions-of-choice for awhile. When I left EVE, my primary side-hustle was building and running Boros-based decks in MTG: Arena. When you have multiple small humans climbing on you, a quick game of Magic is less of a time commitment than joining a Fleet in New Eden. But I soon discovered that keeping one’s card collection current, in a meta that can shift almost daily, was not actually saving me any time or effort overall.
I dabbled in a few other “social” games – Path of Exile, PUBG, Conqueror’s Blade – but none of them scratched the same itch.
The closest I got was dipping a toe into the full-loot PVP MMO, Albion Online. I subbed for a month and set out to become the best leatherworker I could be . . . only to realize after refining, crafting, and marketing dozens of Assassin’s Jackets (one of the game’s OP, high-demand items) that I could have become much richer just by selling the raw hides. I was also amused when, after watching over my shoulder on a couple of forays into the black zones (Albion’s equivalent to null-sec), my kids apparently decided the game was a hunting-and-tailoring simulator and created their own version. They called it “Albion in Basement,” which involved preying on an assortment of unsuspecting stuffed animals and then wearing them around the house.
Like the kids, I eventually tired of the grind. Unlike EVE, I could never quite get into the rest of the experiences that makes that grind worthwhile.
I noticed that, while I was playing all these “social” games, I was largely running solo, treating them as sort of an extended single-player experience. There has only ever been one game that drew me in to the point where I eagerly took part, not just in the game itself, but in the culture of the game. There was only one gaming universe that I ever came to think of as “home.”
In the meantime, Real Life has calmed down – at least as much as can be expected when one has a brand new wingman (or in this case, wing-woman) crawling around the living room trying to grab my mouse and eat it.
My very favorite part of this game – even more than running in a CAISH fleet or roaming around hostile space looking for someone to blow up my ship – has always been sharing the stories of New Eden here at INN. Since Rhivre left me with a standing offer to come back any time, I didn’t hesitate to take her up on it.
So, I’m back . . . back home in New Eden, and back home at INN.
For now, my main is locked up in a station in Delve as I wait for the wheels of bureaucracy to grind through the process of reapplying to Karmafleet so I can undock without getting shot. In the meantime you may see me jumping around hi-sec on my alt, day-tripping into the odd wormhole or several (more on that in the near future) as I try out new facets of this vast and crazy Internet spaceship game and attempt to get better at not dying all the time.
Hopefully I’ll see you out there – ideally on D-Scan, and preferably before you see me.