Yes, despite all expectations I am still playing EVE and in fact just bought a month of subscription (or PLEX or whatever). I’m still working on the many career tutorials in high-sec space, and picking up lots of good world tips from my corp.
At this stage much of the game is like an endless UI puzzle. The features are surprisingly deep and customizable, but cryptic at first. Perhaps I’m doing it wrong, but navigation and awareness seem to come more from overlays than from actually looking out of your ship. The Overview Scanner is your true window to the world, and I’m currently in the process of bashing it into something I can understand — red is bad, obviously, but the list of names and symbols still takes me some time to decode.
For one brief moment last night I felt I had perhaps actually grasped the basics of space combat. I was doing a Military mission and blasting away some NPC pirates. Everything seemed to be coming together — I was picking off pirates that got too far away from their pack, starting on the outside and working my way in. I would orbit in close for a few shots off my close-range, more powerful gun, and then move back out to continue plinking with my less powerful ranged weapon. I got in the groove of activating my shield repair for a couple of cycles and then turning it off again, keeping my ship healthy while not depleting my capacitor. The pirates were no match for me. I was Liore, SPACE WARRIOR.
Then five more stronger pirates popped out from behind a structure and blew up my ship real good. Oops.
I flew my pod back to the local training station and assessed the situation. First, rereading my mission showed that I should have spotted the second wave of pirates and then warped the heck out of there. Look, people, I am Liore, Space Warrior not Liore, Space .. Mission Reader! Okay fine.. there might be a lesson there.
Second, I had no ship now and my “good” (the finest fittings newbie tutorials have to offer!) shield and weapons were gone. Welcome to the sandbox. It was a little disconcerting, and it took me a minute to realize that I should hit the Market. Fortunately Ibis Frigates were cheap and my station had a lot of sellers. It took about 30,000 ISK to get back to a flyable state, which in the scheme of things is not much. (Being blown up also activated the Insurance tutorial, which was amusing timing.)
Azuriel wrote in his recent post on Dust 514 that he is the kind of player who doesn’t like using consumables, “still hesitating to use the stockpile of Elixirs while fighting the final boss”. EVE makes me feel the same way. Technically I have a very slightly better ship in my hold (a Mantis) that I got from a mission, but I’m afraid to use and then lose it. I think just like how raiding in WoW got me used to the idea of dying all the time, I am going to have to get used to the idea of losing my baby ships in EVE.
Plans for the future: More tutorials and my first trip to Jita, the big market hub.