New Player Experience: Battle Royale

2016-04-27

In my previous article in this series I discussed my opinions on the current state of the new player learning experience, and talked about the benefits and drawbacks of the current systems. Today, I will be presenting my opinions on helping improve new players understanding of the game and its mechanics.

I will be discussing an idea suggested by a commenter in the previous article – a newbie battle arena. Now I know this may sound a bit crazy and counter-intuitive, but just give me around 508 words and I’ll explain the idea to you. To elaborate, I am taking the base idea suggested and making some adjustments to the content. I am going to run through this from the initial race selection to the very end of the battle royale, so bear with me.

To begin, you start EVE Online and create a new character. Next, you pick your race (We’re going to go with Amarr for this one, just so I can make a Battle Royal pun), create your character (We’re going with a lovely lady called Lucy) and create the all-important portrait. Then click “next” and awake in your pod, the same as is currently done, but with a slight twist. You find yourself in a system accessible to new players only. It can be worked into the lore as a “CONCORD Training Centre” or something similar. The security status of this system would be 1.0, but safeties would be permanently set to green, so no ganking could happen. You’d start in the pod, and Aura will tell you to approach a “Caribou”, a new CONCORD training ship unique to these newbie systems. The tutorial would then run along as usual, but with more emphasis on combat systems. The tutorial would teach you how to web, scram, point etc, all the skills needed to perform basic PVP. The rats killed in the tutorials will drop valuable items which can be turned in at the station for ISK rewards, teaching new players the mechanics of looting wrecks, and the valuables that can sometimes be found within. Ship fitting will be taught as usual, or through flight academy videos that play automatically when you first open the fitting screen.

So, once a new player has run through the tutorial they will be asked if they wish to keep practicing or if they are ready to “Join the fight for New Eden”. If they say they are ready to join the fight, they will be directed to jump through the one-way stargate leading to the neighboring system, which will have the security status of -1.0 – nullsec. This is where newbies will participate in risk-free PVP,  being able to pick up free Caribous from the Citadel in-system. This would be a great way to introduce newbros to PVP, giving them a zero-loss environment in which to enjoy and learn this large aspect of the game. Now, the battle royale would be at the only other gate in the system, which leads to Yulai, the CONCORD Capital. Before they can jump through the gate they will be introduced to Drag Bubbles, as the ships will be pulled towards a bubble and forced to fight to the death. When only one ship is left alive in a bubble, it is rewarded with 20 Million ISK and ejected from its ship, and is told to jump through the gate. Pod killing will be impossible in this system, but when you die you’d automatically jump in your pod through to Yulai to start the game, and be directed to Yulai station to begin your career with the agents as usual.

Now of course this isn’t perfect, but I believe it could be a good way to introduce newbros to one of the most important aspects of the game’s drama in a risk-free way.

After completing all of the career agents, or after a day of playing, whichever comes first, a pop-up will appear advertising some of the prevalent new player organizations in the game – for example, Dreddit, Pandemic Horde and EVE University. All of these organizations provide support for new players, with Dreddit and PH being more focused on combat and EVE University being focused on all aspects of the game. Of course, this would rely on EUNI updating their wiki, but that was covered in the last article.

So, that’s it for this article about Rookie Resources. Let me know in the comments below what you think of my suggestion and if you have any ideas for improvements or new ways to help the new player experience in EVE become easier to understand, and I may just feature your idea in the next article! Until next time, fly safe.

(Editor’s Note: This piece was written prior to FanFest, and so does not include reactions to, or impressions of, ideas and directions presented during the event, including those from CCP Ghost.)

This article originally appeared on TheMittani.com, written by Vanessa Guang.

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