[Editor’s Note: This was sent to us by DubStep GravyCat]
To you, what is an FC? Just another player? Someone who thinks they can be the next Jay Amazingness? Are they the faceless person on comms who you listen to in order to get those easy killmails? Do you ever think about the thought process’ they go through when informed of a hostile fleet just 2 jumps away? I’ve often wondered what my fleet members think of me and have often hoped to be an FC they enjoyed following around with internet spaceships, enjoying ourselves as we enact vicious acts of spaceship destruction or even whelping gloriously to a titan or two.
I don’t claim to be a very good FC. I don’t think I ever will say I am, either, whether that’s true or not. I do know a great deal about the mechanics that must be considered when engaging several dozen battlecruisers with a hundred destroyers. However, I can’t say I’m particularly good at utilizing that information in the heat of the moment. It’s easy to look back and wonder why your FC didn’t do something the way you would have, but have you ever thought of the pressure you can feel yourself under at that moment in time?
As an FC, your desire to come out on top of that fight is even greater than most of the fleet members. After all, if the fleet goes up in smoke, it’s never said that the tackle ceptor pilot was the one who whelped the fleet, it’s the FC. However if the FC pulls it off and leads their fleet to victory, they share the glory with every single line member equally (except the logi pilots; they get a little bit more). The outcome of a fleet fight is attached to an FC for better or worse. The pressure can mount up for many FCs, especially those who have social anxiety problems and can feel the judgmental eyes of their fleet members upon them. It’s hard to describe what it’s like to make a wrong call to your fleet. When that fleet is far more than just a small gang roam in some cheap T1 destroyers it can leave you feeling pretty bad. So why do many people put themselves in a position where many will scrutinize your failures? Well, that’s easier to explain.
If you’ve ever played a game of, say, Counter Strike competitive and won a hard fought game then you’ll know that feeling. Take the feeling of winning a competitive style game and multiply that by a hundred. There’s more to EVE than aiming well, listening to enemy footsteps and buying the right weapons at the start of the round (yes, I know there’s a little more to Counter Strike than that). There’s how well you communicate to your fleet, calculating risks that can be hard to even guess, having certain people in the right places and, just sometimes, pure luck. Was the fleet composition adequate for the task you set out for? Does everyone have the right fits? What ammo are you using to shoot at the enemies? How are they tanked? Is your fleet anchored correctly?
The glorious feeling of enjoying that shiny Rorqual killmail with your fleet is truly a rush. The satisfaction of evading the enemy’s response fleet leaves a smile on your face for the rest of the day. The laughs you all have together as you get baited on a free Machariel keep you going, encouraging even the most disheartened of FCs to get back up and try again.