There are things we do as part of life whether we have to or because we want to, such as eat, go to school, work, take care of the kids, play sports, be in a band, make some art, or even play games. Sometimes, these things help define who we are.
There was a time when what I did was Eve.
After playing some other game for quite a while, in March of 2011 I decided to truly give Eve a shot, join a corp, live in Null-sec, see what it was all about.
After perusing the Corporation recruitment forum, I found a Corporation called Jolly Codgers (a self described training corp) that matched what I thought I was looking for (30+ years of age and family friendly). After an interview with a guy named Ima Mapson, I was invited to join them out in Solitude.
Solitude is sort of a Hi-sec island separated from the main part of Hi-sec by several Low-sec systems. Ima mentioned that I could suicide clone out there, but I didn’t know much about suicide cloning at the time, so I decided to try to fly through low-sec.
After selling most everything I owned, I spent some time looking at Dotlan, put myself into a little Atron, and jumped into Low-sec.
I had no idea what Low-sec was going to be like, I fully expected not to make it out of the first system alive. Perhaps my little Atron just wasn’t worth chasing, perhaps it was just a little to fast, but for whatever reason, I was able to make it to Solitude in one piece, heart pounding the whole way. My decision to join Jolly Codgers had already turned my Eve experience upside down.
At that time, Solitude was pretty empty. Once I got myself set up with a new Dominix, I was able to join my corp mates while they ran level 4 missions (much better than running missions solo). We had a lot of fun, like most MMOs, Eve is best when played with other people.
Meanwhile, I was working toward being able to fly a stealth bomber, as that was what our corp was flying in Syndicate. Before I could do much more than just sit in a bomber, we got an offer to move to Null-sec.
Apparently, the brothers Solaric Tracker and Admiral Majike (who had started Jolly Codgers) were once members of one of the corporations that started Get Off My Lawn alliance. Get Off My Lawn had recently taken 6 systems in Pure Blind and was looking for more people. As I remember it, Jolly Codgers was supposed to train new pilots with the intent of feeding any interested pilots to LAWN when they were ready to make the move to Null-sec. However, when Admiral Majike informed LAWN that none of his pilots wanted to leave Codgers, LAWN felt that we were now more than just a training corp and said they would be happy to have us join them in Pure Blind.
So it was that I found myself selling my stuff again and making the trip back through Low-sec and a chunk of Hi-sec to the Torrinos system, where I took my first Cov Ops bridge into CRA-QH in Pure Blind.
This is where my Eve career really changed, and it was amazing. I had this picture of Null-sec in my head – myself mining or ratting, and then when the alarms went off, racing into battle with my allies to defend our space. For the most part, life in Null did not disappoint.
Though there was a war not far away, as The DRF, White Noise, Evoke, Pandemic Legion and others pounded away at the Northern Coalition (an old coalition, not to be confused with the Northern Coalition. alliance), it was relatively peaceful living in Pure Blind for the first few weeks. Some of the members of LAWN were joining fleets to help Northern Coalition, but I was still unsure how to fly, so I spent my time ratting, reading, learning and asking questions.
I would be lying if I said that the transition was painless, We lost a few good people that did not want to fight alongside some of our more caustic allies (Goons and others we flew with weren’t exectly known for family friendly comms at the time). The rest of us were having fun, so we stuck it out.
As Northern Coalition collapsed, Evoke, The Polaris Syndicate, Outbreak. and Pandemic Legion started making their way from Tribute toward the Deklein region, where the Goonswarm Federation made their home. This meant they had to come through Pure Blind, which left us directly in their path. As I see it now, Goons must’ve looked around and realized they would need help to keep their space, and they then reached out to each alliance in the area seekng to form a new coalition. Some, such as Mostly Harmless and Wildly Inapropriate, left Pure Blind at this point, but the rest of us chose to stick it out and see what might happen.
And so it was that the ClusterFuck Coalition was born, featuring Goonswarm Federation, Fatal Ascension, Fidelas Constans, Tactical Narcotics Team, Space Monkeys, Executive Outcomes, Gentlemen’s Agreement, and of course, Get Off My LAWN.
Enemy POS’s started to show up in our systems, and we would stay up nights shooting them down. Enemy ships were everywhere, and ratting was for the most part a thing of the past. Finally, the day came when I was online and the call went out to defend BDV3-T from our enemies, lest they take that system to use as a staging point. My corpmates and I jumped into our ships, I in one of my trusty Rifters, and joined a fleet that had over 180 people in it. This being my first large fleet, I did my best to follow the FC’s orders, but frequently found myself barely able to keep up. We warped around BDV looking for targets, not finding much. Evidently, Pandemic Legion had been shooting structures in the system with a fleet of capital ships that included titans, and suddenly we were staring right at a whole bunch of them. Then, comms turned into total chaos, the only part I remember hearing was to target Myal Terego in the Erebus, bump him, keep him away from the POS. So, I did what I could, I am not sure what effect my little ship had on the Titan, and I certainly didn’t do much damage to it, but it ended up being the first non-structure kill to show up on my killboard.
First real fight, and I had helped to kill a Titan… in a Rifter!
As the war went on, I continued to fly Rifters while my skill queue worked toward the Alpha Maelstrom. I became a decent tackler, helping to slow the escape of a few notable kills. The founders of our Corp had real life issues early in this war and so were not around much, the rest of us did what we could to keep things going. For most of us, this was new and fun and our enthusiasm carried us through. While other members helped out with corp leadership, I slowly took over updating and writing various training documents for our little training corp.
I flew in a lot of strategic fleets during my time in Eve, many of them FC’d by the infamous Mister Vee. I’ve tried a variety of roles in addition to tackling, including mainline dps, support, and logistics. Some of those fleets were just boring POS shoots, but many were truly epic battles that got my heart going so fast I was a bit worried.
When our enemies tried to move past Pure Blind to perform the failed VFK headshot in Deklein, I was there to help repel them. I deploying with LAWN to pick a fight with a similarly sized alliance (Imperial Legion) in Geminate. When the CFC took Tribute, Vale of the Silent, Branch and Tenal from the likes of Raiden and Northern Coalition., I was not only a part of the action but got to serve as my corporation’s Director of War. I was there when the CFC took Delve from AAA, and also there when the CFC took Fountain from TEST. I even got a medal from my corporation for the most kills in a month.
All of these things happened to me, all because I put myself out there and really tried to be a part of things.
I left Eve a few times, once to try SWTOR, a second because I let some guy piss me off, and the last time in Nov 2014 to spend time gaming with my teen age son. I made choices along the way that shaped the way others view me (flying with the CFC). I made other choices that paint me in a different light (No griefing or scamming here). I have no regrets. I ended up flying alongside some of the best people I have ever known, as well as some of the most reviled people in the game. I fought against some of the best players Eve has to offer, and while I freely admit that I am no leet guy, standing with allies I was able to help take them down.
This might read as some sort of Imperium propaganda piece, but it is intended to motivate anyone interested to really give Eve a try. It doesn’t matter what corp/alliance you join, just find some people you like and see what happens. In fact, I am not even sure what its like to be a part of the Imperium, LAWN, or my old corporation these days (its been a long time since I flew with any of them). Perhaps one day I will give Eve a shot again, and see what adventure awaits for my alter ego Rax Arclight in New Eden, but in the meantime, I urge anyone who reads this to make their mark on this game.
Eve – sometimes it’s boring, but when its fun, nothing compares.