Double Edged Sword

There have been some post talking about views on grinding in eve and how it compares to other MMO’s.

As a whole Eve works very differently in the leveling aspect of things. It has a truly unique method of real-time training of any and all skills you could ever want. Eve’s PLEX system means you could stand idle for months, getting capital skills, without playing, then: buy some PLEX and hop in the ship using real cash through CCP’s legal “buy plex via eve’s official site, or official fan sites”.
Still: there are lots of other reasons Eve forces us into the grinding game we’ve come to expect from any MMO. A few examples would be:

  1. A new comer working on faction standings in order to reach higher levels of missions and agent availability.
  2. A miner or R&D player reaching their agent requirements or a higher yield. Many R&D agents are sort of opposite of those you’d likely work for on any other style of play. This means you could be running missions for quite some time and still find yourself starting over if choosing to go hard-core into mining or R&D.
  3. Another would be an ex-pirate wanting to return to higher security space. While I have not done this trek myself, I have heard stories about the painful process of converting from -10 to “all highsec” status.
  4. Us nullsec players like myself, along with lowsec and just about everyone else wants a Jump Clone, you may or may not have to grind or re-grind your way to the required status for these.
  5. Next we have the little known Cosmos agents. These work in a unique way as many agents require you to find one head guy and then follow up through their missions to new agents, just like going from a lvl 1 agent to lvl 2, only these agents are found floating in space. It’s a fun adventure and has it’s rewards. Last we have: grinding normal npc rats for no good reason other than to make a quick profit (most notably in nullsec where I’ve made over 20mill isk/hr on belt rats). The last is much like you’d do in any other mmo when stuck between quests or being just bored: run out, find some mobs and start blasting away.

There is still a great relief felt from Eve’s training and leveling method via real-world time based training. There are no “level”‘s, but instead a simple yet very extensive set of skills and rankings you train over the course of real-time, logged in or NOT. Eve also has “certificates”, which I have seen a few personal friends who play other mmo’s go right for these as they give the image of “I’m skilled in navigation!”, or “I’ve got epic tanking skills!” feeling. Some brag with them as a way of ranking themselves against other eve players, and others ignore them all together.
However, Eve’s pride and joy for many players including myself: time based training, is a double bladed sword: I have yet to get ANY real world friends into eve online, I’ve tried recruiting from many other MMO’s as well. Recruiting one mmo player into another mmo was easy, but if the destination “try this mmo, I’ll even pay for your account” was eve: most all complained about one thing: “I can’t grind my way up through an all-night session with a pot of coffee!” mentality many are used to with other MMO’s. It’s one I myself find frustrating. The initial view seems the same: They like it, they sometimes go straight for certs, but later drop out due to “I don’t want to be forced to wait several months to be good”. If it will take you 15 days to fly a cruiser on a fully optimized char, it’ll ALWAYS take you that long no matter how hard core you play. I’ve had a few instantly turn away from eve after hearing “OMG! I’d need 200+ days for that ship???”. *sigh*. It’s just not a good “first impression” for an mmo.Others see it and stick with Eve, but find it too harsh, or go back to more familiar grounds in another MMO.

There is little room with Learning skills and implants, though they help in the long run, they don’t offer the new recruit in his most vulnerable time a quick way to jump into the game. Which kind of circles back to learning skills. There have been a lot of talk about training them or feeling pressured to do so, yet the reality remains: they can be skipped initially for some quick gratification until later. It’s your time: do with it as you wish. I’ve got 4 Eve Accounts, My main and 1 alt have great learning skills near-maxed out. The two others are a tanking alt and a probing alt. I wanted instant results and didn’t mind waiting longer, so I went straight for tanking skills and probing with only basic learning done (Enough to eliminate 5 days or so off training). Now that they’re done with their basic needs, they’re circling back around to finish up learning. So IMHO the whole learning debate is null, as they’re completely optional.

While Eve definitely has a lot of grinding, and can get redundant at times, it more than makes up for it in the MANY career paths you can take, interesting mission types, Cosmos missions, DED complex’s, pirating, ninja-looting, mining, and many, many other methods: Eve just balances out quite well in comparison to others. Not to mention you’re constantly making progress on your training no matter how often you play. A great example is myself: I haven’t logged in since I moved 3 weeks ago, I’m enjoying time with family, and job hunting. Meanwhile in Eve: My char is 8 days away from flying a Carrier. Meaning that all this time away from Eve I’ve kept making progress. Eve is a great MMO, and does an excellent job at maintaining the typical “Grinding” burnout. I think there just needs to be something else added to the learning/implant process to somehow speed things up for those who are actively playing v.s. inactive (logged out) training.

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~ by katsumi1980 on September 10, 2010.

2 Responses to “Double Edged Sword”

  1. It’s fair to disagree with me, obviously, but please don’t misrepresent my attitude. Musings on what I think at the moment and an effort to start a conversation aren’t assertions that I’m always right.

    After all, we’re just talking about issues of Internet spaceships. Not worth anybody getting worked up. 🙂

    • Hey, no I like your blog, and we all have opinions, though I think the grinding thing is a part of every mmo’s life. I love rifts post on keeping things relaxed, as you’ve got no “deadline@, and to take your time. Making grinding less tense, it’s a great way to look at the grinding factor and make it less painful.

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