Archive for the ‘Psia’ Category

The battle against ennui

Posted: July 13, 2010 in Eve Uni, Psia, PvP, Updates

It’s been a while hasn’t it?

My lack of activity here is somewhat analogous with my lack of activity in game.  There’s a bunch of reasons for my absence. My real life work has been very busy over the past few months, culminating in the announcement that I’m to be made redundant (along with all my colleagues) near the end of the year.  My family life plays an increasingly large part, my daughter sleeps less, and requires more looking after than she did before. And coming to the end of her first year of life, we’re getting out and about more and my social life is showing signs of recovery.

Eve-wise, I found that what little time I spent in game was becoming filed with firefighting to try and keep up to date with my Uni jobs. Eve mails to be replied to, Events to be organised and diplomatic convos to be had; the MMObligation was becoming too much for me. So, I resigned my posts in the Uni, and have taken some time to use Eve as a break from the pressures of everyday life. The trouble is, I’m goal driven, and without a firm goal my Eve time has become a little aimless (and not much fun). I’ve been logging on, spending some hours chatting to friends outside the Uni, perhaps running a few missions on my alt, and then logging off again. Nice enough, but not exactly exciting.

So, it was time for a change.

I have applied to join a PvP corp based in 0.0 and been accepted as a trial member. This is a step into the unknown for me. I’ve been to 0.0 a couple of times as a tourist; but the idea of living there is entirely alien to me. It’s not entirely outside my comfort zone; I’ve PvPed a fair amount, and the corp in question has a number of old uni friends within their ranks. But from the safe confines of empire and the uni, it’s very much into the unknown.

So, now there are the logistics to sort. I’ve posted my goodbyes to the Uni forums, dropped roles, and sometime this afternoon or evening, I’ll drop corp and apply in game for my new corp. Then there’s the great move – getting all my ships over to my new home; making a ton of bookmarks; and getting to know my new corpmates.

I feel a new optimism and enthusiasm for the game, and am looking forward to the new challenges that it will offer. After all, a change is most definitely as good as a rest.

Welcome to the fourteenth installment of the EVE Blog Banter, the monthly EVE Online blogging extravaganza created by CrazyKinux. The EVE Blog Banter involves an enthusiastic group of gaming bloggers, a common topic within the realm of EVE Online, and a week to post articles pertaining to the said topic. The resulting articles can either be short or quite extensive, either funny or dead serious, but are always a great fun to read! Any questions about the EVE Blog Banter should be directed to crazykinux@gmail.com. Check out other EVE Blog Banter articles at the bottom of this post!

The first banter of 2010 comes to us from the EVE Blog Father, CrazyKinux himself, who asks the following:
As we begin another year in New Eden, ask yourselves “What Now?” What will I attempt next? What haven’t I done so far in EVE? Was it out fear, funds, or knowledge? Have I always wanted to start my own corporation, but have never dared doing so? Is there a fledging mercenary waiting to come out of its shell? Or maybe an Industrialist? What steps and objectives will I set myself to accomplish in order to reach my ultimate goal for this year? EVE is what you make of it. So, what is it going to be for you?

So… what now? What next?

Well, the big things are not in doubt, nor in need of a change. I continue to have lots of fun with Eve University, I’ve found the right blend of responsibility and relaxation to fit with my play time and commitment levels. My duties with the Ivy League Navy, and as a Diplomat, continue to give me the organisational role that I seem to need to truly enjoy social games; but are light enough time commitments to enable a decent game/life balance. I’m making new friends all the time, and solidifying older friendships into something worthwhile. Honestly, to move on from the uni this year would mean that my attitude or circumstance has changed considerably from where I am now.

There is an area where I have a goal, however. An area where I have been a slacker, not taken my opportunities and have resolved to do something about it.

Money.

Yup, iskies. moolah. dosh.

Thus far i have taken a relaxed approach to the matter of making money. I’ve breezed through my Eve career, bought a couple of plex to fund myself and not worried too much about making vast quantities of isk. But, I’m paying for 2 accounts, and I’m not sure that this is sustainable, or desirable. So, my goal for this year is to fund at least one account through the use of isk to buy plex. My alt can now fly a decently fitted Raven, and has access to L4 missions. I have a second alt who is training trade skills, hauler skills and transport skills, who will sell on the loot. The intent is to get Psia into something to support my raven alt in missions, and make them go a lot faster. Whether that should be more DD, or RR in a logistics boat, I’m not sure.

By the middle of this year, say the beginning of July, I’d like to be making more than I’m spending, consistently week on week. By the third quarter, say the beginning of October, I want to be funding my alt account with plex.

So that’s it. My aim for the year. Make money. Easy, huh? Well, we’ll see… but certainly it’s a new aspect of Eve for me to experiment with, and I’m quite looking forward to it.

If you enjoyed this post, or even if you didn’t, be sure to check out the other participants in Blog Banter XIV!

It’s an update!

Posted: January 11, 2010 in Eve Uni, Psia, Updates

Ooh, an update! See!

It’s been a while, my lovely blogfriends. I’ve been away, visiting family on a grand tour, celebrating Christmas and the New Year. And during that time, I’m sorry to say, I’ve neglected you all again. Yes I have. No chunterings nor wurblings have I shared. I’m sorry. Truly. Let me try to make it up to you with a little update.

So… where are we? Well, Psia seems to have settled, ship wise, comfortably into cruisers. The trade off between toughness and agility suits her, and so she’s gradually been filling out the required skills to fly them well. She’s got herself into Recons and loves both her curse and her pilgrim. T2 medium guns are trained, and she’s days off a HAC; and she’s trained to fly logistics cruiser, and plans to run a Guardian with a couple of other uni pilots. Of course, the support skills have been trained too, and she can use T2 reppers and transfers, and the like. Post-HAC, it’s HIC time, and then… strategic cruiser. The legion is going to cost her a complete fortune, but will be worth it. Endless hours of EFT fun trying to work out the ideal fits for plexes, fleet support in WH and the like. It’ll be almost like a whole new minigame.

Her university roles continue to develop. She’s Ops officer for an Ivy League Navy Battlegroup (the wing of the uni dedicated to the defence of the alliance); which means she’s in charge of organising events for the BG and the wider uni. From races through scouting competitions, I’m enjoying this quite a lot. It’s hard work at times, but then I’ve never been scared of that when I’m enthusiastic. Her role as Diplomat for the uni varies wildly from the not hugely interesting, to the utterly absorbing. I’m getting to meet lots of new people, and gain a really broad understanding of the diverse alliances out there. Very enjoyable indeed. Feel free to contact her if there is any diplomacy needing doing, and remember that the Uni offers open non-aggression pacts (mutual blues) to any corp or alliance that would like it.

My alt continues to gain skills too, of course, and is now flying a Raven with a basic mission fit. This seems to work ok for the level 4 missions that he can do. He’s a taken a little break tho, for the past few days, as I develop a specific trade/hauling alt.

All in all, I’m thoroughly enjoying Eve still. The uni is a fantastic home, and the people are mostly great. Think I’ll be here for a while yet.

Fly safe, or fly victorious.

So, it’s been quiet around here, hasn’t it? Well, that’s because real life continues to be busy, our little daughter takes up not only a lot of time, but also a lot of my headspace – leaving less time for reflecting on all things Eve. Still, she’s well worth it, and my life is so much better than it was before her arrival.

The very lovely Curse (From Evelopedia)

The very lovely Curse (From Evelopedia)

Time constraints meant that I missed the opportunity to participate in the most recent blog banter; a shame as I had a few thoughts on the possibilities opened by the idea of extending the T3 range to more than just cruisers. In brief, I wanted to avoid the concept of “strategic BS” or “strategic frigs” and instead was looking at a set of ships to offer strategic options to those who would rather mine than fight, or industrialise over fight. Ships with R&D options, kinda solo mobile mini POS… but anyway – I missed the window of opportunity.

Enough with things that I have not done… how about what I have done? Well, Psia has spent her past few concentrating on becoming a leader.  I know, I know… leaders aren’t made, they are born. But, Eve offers the opportunity to train for leadership, and soon P will be able to x up with L5 3/3/3/3. This has the added bonus of allowing her to proudly display the “SC” title on her character sheet. And speaking of titles, she’s graduated! As a graduate of Eve University she gets a neato medal to show everyone what a clever girl she is, and can make her way in New Eden with the acknowledgement that she’s no longer a n00b.

She’s not going anywhere for the time being though. The university provides the ideal place to further develop her skills and my understanding. Frequent wars are giving her fleet, small gang and pvp experience; and the university’s support network is set up to offer all the expert opinion and knowledge base that she could wish for. There’s also an amount of recompense owed to the Uni for their help and generosity in offering her a home, and so she’ll stick around and try to give something back. At 6.5 mil SP, she’s starting to get to be a competant pilot – but some more experience is always welcome, and to be able to continue to learn whilst offering something back to the corp is win/win.

After she’s done with leadership skills, it’ll be time to move on to those elusive T2 medium guns, and from there cruiser V (ye gods that feels like a long haul) and thereafter Recons. Curse and Pilgrim, here she comes!

My alt taught me a valuable lesson the other evening. After a long night of trying to get my daughter to sleep, I figured that I’d log onto my alt and do a couple of quick missions. His L2 agent offered Recon to him, and I duly set out in my Moa. Being tired, and not having read the mission text, or paid any attention to the Eve-survival text, I proceeded to attack one of the three pirates – who spawned a ton of bad guys, who blew me to pieces. Boom went my Moa. Then boom went the speedy frig that I tried the mission with. And the shuttle. And the n00b frig. In the end, I quit. Abandoned the mission, and was several million isk out of pocket. Which is completely sucky, having wiped out a ton of profit. On the upside, this might be the impetus needed to buy and fit a Drake for missioning. He’s a few hours off the T2 shield skills, and so can probably offer decent dps and a good tank. It should enable him to blitz the L2s and get onto L3s as fast as possible.

Outside Eve, I have been toying with some other games. I played a bit of the Champions Online open beta, and whilst I enjoyed it, it didn’t get me excited enough to actually spend actual real money. I have downloaded and installed the Gatheryn beta test client, but have thus far been unable to make it further than a very buggy character creation screen, so I’m waiting for another patch or two before going back to it (having submitted my bug report). As evidenced by the previous post, I am pretty excited by the potential of The Secret World, an MMO by my favourite developers, Funcom (Anarchy online was my first MMO love, for all its faults). It looks, from the little I’ve seen of it, like a cross between Call of Cthulhu, Anton Wilson-ism, and White Wolf’s Hunter. Incidentally, Hunter is a game for which I have a deep and abiding love, driven by my days playtesting it for my good friend Leafshine, who was one of it’s key authors. That WW are now owned by CCP is a neat synchronicity. I know that Funcom do not have the best reputation for quality product at release, but I shall be following this like a frothing fanboi. Do not expect unbiased coverage.

I see that CCP have announced their next expansion, Dominion, whioch will focus on the sovereignty mechanics.  doubt that I’ll be hanging in 0.0 by then, but I look forward to seeing the changes nonetheless. I’m not so sure about their own social networking platform. Being Facebooked, Livejournaled, Tweeted and LinkedIn – I’m not sure that I can stomach yet another niche social network – but we’ll see.

That’s all for now – I hope to have something a bit more substantive to talk about soon.

Update: To infinity and beyond!

Posted: August 14, 2009 in Psia, Updates

My lovely daughter continues to get in the way of my Eve career, but at least i’ve not been entirely out of the game of late, and I’ve managed to get the odd bit of play time now and then on Psia. Skill training has continued apace, of course, and a few milestones have been passed these last few weeks.

Psia discovers her first Wormhole

Psia discovers her first Wormhole

New ships! Psia is now a proficient, if not expert, Cov Ops pilot. Her Anathema, equipped with its CovOps cloak, and expanded probe launcher, is often trolling around the universe, scanning down anomalies and exploring. Add to that, she can now hack, and she’s a one woman exploration diva (Archaeology is in train to complete the set). I fear, however, that she’ll have to go to CovOps V to actually be able to use the codebreaker without offlining her MWD. She’s scanned down several radar sites, as well as a number of Wormholes, which fellow Uni students have then benefitted from. She’s learned a number of good lessons whilst experimenting, most notably to always bookmark the WH exit.

Hull Upgrades V finally got trained too, and with her fresh T2 tank she has outfitted a Harbinger battlecruiser. Her first BC, she fitted it out with pulse lasers, and a pvp fit, and took it into a WH with some fellow unistas. A number of lessons were learned here as well, notably that T1 pulse lasers will cause you to constantly be chasing the sleepers around due to their short range; and that npcs using neuts, when combined with sleeper BSes that hit like steam trains, are fatal. Boom went the first Harby, along with the 3 trimarks and other fittings. Still, that which does not kill me makes me a bit more careful; and she has a beam fit BC for WH ops now. And a pulse fit for the inevitable pvp that will come in the next Uni hi-sec war. T2 pulses are on the list for soon.

My winning streak continued with victory in the Uni Amarr EW competition – meaning that she gained a couple of EW fit Arbies and a Sentinel. She can sit in the Sentinel, but I’m a bit stumped on any low SP fits that won’t die within seconds, so flying it in anger will have to wait for some more skill training I think. I’m thinking that Electronic attack ships at IV or V might be a necessity for the long range neut fun.

Thoughts have coalesced a little on the future training plans. Cloaking, drones, EW and T2 medium guns all point towards Curse/Pilgrim, I think. There’s a long training queue to get to recon V, but I think that it’ll be worth it. The pilgrim looks like a whole heap of fun. Possibly thereafter a Zealot might appeal. In the meantime I have my Arbies for pvp fleets and small gang work, my Harby for pve work, Anathema for solo cash and exploration fun, and a range of frigs for pootling around in disposable fun.

All in all, decent progress despite my lack of play time; and I’m hopeful that I can get a bit more time out there and doing soon.

Well, what an eventful couple of weeks this has been! I finally got into my new Arbitrator, with T2 drones and a cadre of tracking disruptors. I flew it a few times in small hunting fleets looking for war targets, but without any success catching them. Still it looks good, and flies well, and I am still in love with drones and EW. I do need to spend some time getting my drone interfacing to V, so that the little fellas are operating at maximum efficiency, but the loooong training time is putting me off at the moment.

The uni muster before the op

The uni muster before the op

I did get to fly my first big fleet op this last weekend. Our war targets have been persisting with the war for a little while, renewing it each time it comes up, despite the efforts of our diplomatic corps. We would much rather not be fighting as it interferes with our core teaching mission; but this current lot seem determined to persist.

In an attempt to finally end the fight, by inflicting losses on them sufficient to make them think twice, we assembled a large force two nights in a row. I was priviledged to be able to join the fleet on the second of the two nights. We assembled our fleet and headed out to where the enemy POS sat. We were tailed by their intelligence types, and it was pretty obvious to anyone that we were on the move and where we were headed. We expected to meet heavy resistance, and weren’t disappointed.

When we arrived at the POS, there was the largest collection of enemies that I’d ever seen. Battleships, carriers and motherships, as well as a few smaller support vessels. Getting stuck in, I targetted a Blaster boat and set my TDs to work, whilst siccing my Hobs onto the fighters that were being launched from the enemy carriers. Unfortunately within a few seconds I was under fire – and so was forced to warp out. I was very grateful for the fact that I’d been aligned to an escape route early on. A few minutes of shield fixing and I was back into the fray. More drones onto fighters. More TD action, this time onto a BC target which went down like the victim that he was. And targetted again, and warped out again. And so on, and so forth.

Finally I got to stay longer than 30 seconds, and managed to help out on a carrier kill, putting my remaining few drones to good work smacking a nidhoggur until it went boom. Another carrier went boom, and then it was onto the POS itself. By this point, I was out of offensive options. My drones couldn’t get into the POS shield to help, my guns were too short range (designed as they are for smooshing enemy drones. So I contented myself with trundling around remote repping the armour of those as needed it, and taking some screenshots.

After a few minutes of concerted bombardment from our heavy battleships and the like, the POS went boom. Contented, we looted and headed home.

I had an absolute blast, and learned lots of stuff about massive fleet engagements, POS attacks and capital ships. I consider myself lucky to have had the opportunity to participate in this sort of op so early in my Eve career.

The Uni attacks!

The Uni attacks!

Since then, things have been quiet. WTs have been thin on the ground, and I have been busily training. Taking a break from my drones and stuff, I’m currently running Electronics to V and Cloaking to IV, before equipping and jumping into a shiney new Anathema. being as I have loved the look of it since starting playing, this something I’m looking forwards to immensely.

I’ve also thrown a bunch of skills that lead to some of the ships that I’d like to fly into EveMon, and then asked it to come up with a decent attribute map that will see me through the first six months. Equipped with that info, I’ve remapped, and saved myself a couple of weeks training time over the next 6 months. I still have another remap hanging around ready for when I find that I’ve screwed it up and what to head in an entirely different direction.

For now it seems, Eve life is good.

Under my skin

Posted: June 26, 2009 in MMO Concepts, Psia

When I first started playing Eve (this time), I thought long and hard about my hopes for the game. I like to go into things having an idea of the type of play I’d like to get from my gaming.

Coming off the back of serious involvement in WoW, I felt that I’d like to take this game a bit easy. A nice gentle game, playing internet spaceships, blowing stuff up and not worrying about anything. I made a concious decision not to attempt to get any of my WoW guildies to come and join me – they are all RL friends, as well as online gaming friends – I felt that doing it “on my own” would be a far more interesting proposition. When I’d started playing other games, WAR being one of them, I’d always got together with the same people, we’d always formed a guild together, and played together. And then left the game together. Furthermore, obligations go hand in hand with playing alongside RL friends. It’s much harder to refuse a request when it comes from a RL mate, than from a guildy with whom you have less of a bond. And lastly, with the number of friends, our guilds had always been small, and small guilds breed more pressure to over-commit. And for obvious reasons, I wanted to avoid over-commitment.

A couple of weeks in, I broke this slightly, by firing off a buddy key to a couple of friends who I thought would love the game. They have both joined, and seem to be having great fun – but we have fleeted up once, and beyond that simply chat in game.

I spent the first month flying around in my frigates, doing the epic arc and finding my feet. Lots of fun, and I tried to pitch in with what I had learned to the rookie chat channel, helping out where I could. After a month in game, that channel went away, and I was left with my NPC corp chat. occasionally there were nuggets of brilliance, but really there are only so many ascii penises that you can ignore, before you resort to turning off the channel. So I was left, flying around space, doing missions and mumbling to myself, like some sort of lonely space hobo. I was still having fun, but it wasn’t grabbing me the way that it had before. I looked around for something to help, and found Eve University.

Since applying to the university, I have learned a ton of new things. Game mechanics that once baffled me, now are clear. My hangar of a few ships, now is looking pretty healthy, with tacklers and heavy tacklers, EW and small gang ships; as well as a few missioners. I understand the mechanics of hisec war very well! But most of all, I am starting to feel a sneaky bond develop to the Uni and its people. The generosity of spirit of some of these people is astounding. Several years into their Eve careers and they still have time and ability to answer the dumbest of questions in good humour. Their willingness to go several extra miles to help new lost players is remarkable in a game that is renowned for its brutality (As one of the members says in their sig: “This game is about groups of bastards competing to be the biggest bastard in a battle for money and power. And here we are running a charity.”) And you know, it’s developed an affection for the Uni and its principles that will last a very long time.

The uni aims to equip people for their life after the uni. It wants to create good, competant New Eden citizens; wherever their path might take them. And that doesn’t just mean carebears. But the more I get to know the uni, the more I think that I’m likely to stick around for a while. Rather  than get my education and move straight on, I have a bond that means I want to stick around, to help the uni do its work, and to protect its ideals.

This corp has got under my skin, and really, I wouldn’t have it any other way.