13 February 2017

Zen


The cathartic nature of the aural ping,
as the bubbles resize and draw you in.
Danger lurks somewhere within.
Can ye find it? 
Gas, gas, data, relic, null,
probes in space unearth the soul.
Can I find somewhere to go?
Do ah care? 
Chain is forged and none shall see.
Sitting waiting patiently.
Writing terrible poetry.
Scanners pause.

15 January 2017

Lost In EVE

Back in the mists of time, when I first joined Z3R0 Return Mining Inc., the corp was primarily a PvE
corp. To a certain extent we had teeth we would bare at times, but our primary activities revolved around running sites, sucking gas, or building things. Fast-forwarding through the years we have moved back and forth between becoming more PvE focused or more PvP focused, but never fully dived into either camp.

A couple of years ago when I thought the time was right I tried to position us as a PvP corp who did occasional PvE to pay the bills for ships. The problem with that is people would join the corp, realise we weren't always wanting to form fleets to go out hunting, then log off and/or quit the corp due to doing too much PvE. Conversely, off the back of that, I positioned us as a PvE corp who like to shoot at people and the exact opposite problem rises up. People who don't want to PvP get upset when we want to shoot at other folks.

As it stands, with a new year underway, I'm having a think about how to position the corp in the obligatory EVE-O forum post. I've tried honesty and it didn't have much truck with people. I've detailed my stretching of the truth and that just leads to disappointed people. It seems that EVE players just don't get the concept we play the game with, namely we'll do whatever Bob presents to us. Be it shooting people, running sites or sucking C5 gas, so long as we can do it while consuming plenty of alcohol and having hilarious conversations we're happy. Hell, the perfect night brings in all of those options.

EVE players seem to expect a focus on a single aspect of the game. Large nullsec alliances get the luxury of creating silos of player activities so people take part in their favourite aspect. I have no intention to go to Nullsec. More powerful wormhole alliances occupy multiple holes with each member having a hole to 'Krab' in and not pollute their main pewpew home. I prefer the idea of not gaming the system, but to have each pilot (or family of pilots, as I see alts) truly earn the ISK 'at home' to enjoy New Eden. So I sit here contemplating a recruitment drive but have no idea how to position it. Saying "We do all the things" appears to be worse than lying.

8 January 2017

Must Try Harder

My 2016 blogging campaign began with the goal of posting more frequently. I didn't think I would get back to the heady heights of 2012 but I was looking for at least one post per week on average, ideally six posts per month overall. Things were going pretty well for the first five months but then real life decided to take a dump on me in June when my work went under and I was made redundant. That's where blogging definitely took the back seat for the rest of the year.

Finding a new job for the first time in over a decade was interesting. Acclimatising to the new job was interesting. The hectic uncontrolled nature of the new workplace was interesting. All of this 'interesting' left me with not much spare time or energy. I had the choice between blogging or playing EVE. Sorry, dear reader, I chose to play EVE.

Citadels have been anchored. Roams have been roamed. Traps have been sprung and ships have been both lost and killed. I still fly with the same wonderful group of people every week so I'm happy to say my lack of blogging isn't a reflection on my lack of game time. Although I still don't get enough time to play...

This year I return with the same hope as last. A weekly blog with a couple of bonus posts per month where possible. Hopefully my remaining three readers will multiple into 12 by the end of the year. Stick with me and we'll find out. If there's anything in particular you would like to me write about drop me an email at orea@ofsolitude.net.

16 October 2016

Opening a New Map

Out with the old
Intel is everything in wormhole space. Our daily routine revolves around scanning for routes. Presenting the chains we find as accessible maps is a massive requirement for us. In the beginning we used ASCII maps in the bulletin board. Then almost exactly three years ago we started using EVE W-Space for creating our chain maps. Unfortunately this requires the in-game browser to track each pilot's current position. On Tuesday the in-game browser was retired from the client and EVE W-Space lost a massive part of functionality.

Thankfully I had been preparing for this by trying other pieces of mapping software. I prefer to host the code myself so that ruled out Siggy from the get-go. The first option to try was the other well-known mapping project of Tripwire. It installed easy enough and I got it up and running with no problems at all. When I started using it I just didn't gel with the interface. With three years of EVE W-Space mapping left to right, I didn't like the top-down mapping in Tripwire. Everything also felt small, again likely caused by the emphasis on larger nodes for each system mapped in EVE W-Space. After one evening spent mapping with Tripwire I was done and looking for another option.

In with the new
One night on comms someone suggested a newer project called Pathfinder. I had a quick read of their website and agreed to give it a go. Once again, installation was trivial and I had the software mapping for me in no time. Right from the off I had the same complaint as with Tripwire regarding the size of the node bubbles. Unlike Tripwire though, Pathfinder has free placement of each system. You can click and drag the system type indicator (C1, C2, H, etc.) and move the bubble where ever you want. This means we could continue to work with left-to-right mapping.

Another nice feature is the page loads in system kills within the last 24 hours. This gives you an instant idea if there may be people lurking around to shoot at (or die to). One final feature I quite like is the route planner will use the mapped connections to calculate the fastest route somewhere, using wormholes if required. It is rather nice seeing the distance to Jita is eight jumps while I'm sat in a random nullsec watching nobody do anything.

If you are in the market for a new mapping tool and want to host it yourself I can thoroughly recommend Pathfinder. Or, if you're not as paranoid as me you can always use their hosted version.

26 September 2016

Drifters Abound


To quote my corpmate who took this screenshot in J130037: "Yeah, fuck that hole".

21 September 2016

Not Entertainment

The problem with new player retention was inadvertently pigeonholed on comms tonight:
"It's PVE; you do it for the ISK, not the entertainment"
'Nuf said