Dienstag, 10. März 2015

Starting Blues

I forgot if I already mentioned it, but originally I tried out EVE Online in 2012. At the time, the game confused me immensely. After a couple really embarrassing attempts at doing stuff, I just logged out and forgot about the game. My last contact for a while was the message two weeks later about my trial running out.

Fast forward a few months until December. I stumbled upon EVE again, thanks mostly to the forum I'm frequenting, which is home to one of the larger player presences in EVE Online.

So I gave the game another chance and finally subscribed in January 2013. I spend about an hour on making my character, half an hour on selecting a name and then my gaming experience began! More or less.

My main and in 2013 only character was this guy here. After making Mr. True Amarr Grumpy Pants I wanted to name him after a famous hero from Simon R. Greens Deathstalker books: Owen Deathstalker. "Deathstalker" was a bit to grim/pretentious for me, though. And so I tried to make the homage more subtle by using another second name.

In the end, I wanted to bring out my love of exploration by naming him after a landscape. I settled on the Levant as a good naming place. Since he was an Amarr, this seemed oddly appropriate. I threw the letter "h" in to make it sound less harsh. Besides, his name wasn't literally the Levant, the Levant was just an inspiration for the name.

And so Owen Levanth, True Amarr and liberal holder was born. Fierce defender of freedom and science he went through his tutorials and then immediately travelled to Gallente-space.

Since the Gallente are all about freedom, after all. To top it all of, I wrote a bio explaining how Owen had a falling out with his father, a rather powerful liberal holder because of his personal views.

The next few days and weeks I tried out some missioning, waited for skills to finish and did dumb shit like transporting cheap goods around for some miniscule profits. After this little adventure in the Bleak Lands happened, I decided to finally go back and finish the last tutorials I had left. To my surprise I got a decent destroyer handed to me, which came in handy after my last destroyer (a Corax) had another explosive run-in with a gate camp.

This destroyer, an Amarrian Dragoon, became my first serious attempt at playing the game without ignoring the actual gameplay. I outfitted the ship with some pulse and beam lasers to hit ships at long and short ranges both, fitted some shield and armor modules and went off. Since I wanted to explore New Eden, I finally tried my hand at the Sisters of EVE Epic Arc. A long line of story missions for beginners.

Also the Sisters sounded like the kind of organization I would like to work for, so I travelled into the general direction of the starting agent and started the arc.

During the first few missions I learned I had made some mistakes and learned some drone skills, bought some drones and after getting Drones to level 4 (sounded good enough for me) I continued.

One of the systems I passed through made me learn about incursions and the dire threat of the evil Sansha. Of course I tried shooting some Sansha ships I could see in the belts, which ended badly. Owen warped out without drones and barely surviving. Some repairs and replacement drones later I continued with the epic arc. I also poured all my saved up money at that point into a Thorax, since I finally had skilled into the ship and the medium-guns the ship needed. I came back with a Thorax and (thanks to my low skills) very slowly burned the Sansa-NPCs down. After several attempts I destroyed the two belt rats and was satisfied with my revenge.

I changed back to my Dragoon and everything went well after that, at one point I even replaced my wild mixture of light pulse/beam lasers with four beam lasers and learned to use different crystals to determine range.

In the last mission of this first beginner's arc, there is a NPC called Dagan. He flies an impressive looking battlecruiser and is fierce indeed. The evildoer tanked the DPS from my drones and my lasers like nothing and stumped me for a while. But then I remembered something: I had a cruiser with medium rail guns stashed away, thanks to my Sansha-intermission. So I ran back and took my Thorax to finally undo Dagan.

Of course Dagan still easily tanked my damage output, so I made a third and final attempt: By then I knew blasters were the weapons with the highest damage and the shortest range, so I fitted five ion blasters on my Thorax, loaded up on drones for some extra damage and attacked Dagan again.

This time I burned his battlecruiser down and was finally victorious. Feeling better about myself I finished the Sister Epic Arc. Now I already had tried out a lot of things and at this point I had some skills in exploration saved up, so I bought and fitted a simple exploration frigate to go on some adventures. I decided to take the Heron. For me, the Heron looks the most like an explorer for me from the four exploration frigates. And learning new frigate skills goes pretty fast, so I went out and looked at stuff.

At that point I learned a hard lesson about the old exploration-system. In which NPCs are haunting even the most remote collection of ruins you could think of. Like some sort of metallic insect swarm. My little frigate, barely armed, already has some trouble finishing exploration sites in HighSec -everywhere else, I just ran into a wall.

The old and painful scanning system, in which every single probe you want to use to find something hidden in space must be moved separately, turned out to be another obstacle I found rather annoying.

So after actually not much exploring I made one last journey, just as a sightseeing tour, after I found something really surprising and interesting during my travels: A wormhole into a new and unknown region of space.

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