The Cranky Sysadmin A world of technology, fun, and ignorant rants.

September 24, 2008

Eve-Online, a new toy.

Filed under: Games — Cranky Sysadmin @ 8:39 am

Recently, work has been taking most of my attention. So much so that I can’t reliably schedule myself into raids in WoW. So until things slow down, I am setting WoW aside. As you may guess from the title, I found a game that doesn’t yet require much scheduling or concentrated attention in the form of Eve-Online. The website has a ton of information about the game and back story. In short, Eve is set in the far future in an unknown part of the universe. No aliens inhabit this world, just humans in various forms. Genetic and cyborg style enhancements are common. The character is mostly defined by skills, ship, and money (ISK).

I recently purchased a game card and turned my trial account into an active account, so I’m still a noob. Still, I recognize many mistakes I made and I figured I’d pass along some tips on how to avoid them and have more fun/money. The first thing that progression game players will run into is the act that there are no “levels”. The whole game is based on advancement of individual skills. Many paper and pen RPG’s used a similar system. Twilight 2000 comes to mind. The skills are advanced only by the passage of time. You don’t need to be logged in for a skill to advance. The speed at which a skill is learned is effected by 2 of your 5 attributes. The higher the 2 attributes associated with the skill, the faster you can level the skill.

So the first tip is, advance the learning skills which are associated with the attributes you want to focus on. I suggest level 3 to start. That takes a few hours. Advancing the “Learning” skill increases all of your attributes. There are advanced learning skills, but the books used to learn them are expensive for new players. I don’t suggest getting them until you’re sure you want to play the game a while.

Another thing you may notice after browsing the market (similar to an auction house in WoW but more advanced) is that everything is for sale. There are no soulbound items. This means that cash is king. Any skill that increases your ability to get money is suggested. I run a lot of missions, so the negotiation skill is nice as it adds 5% per level to the money offered by agents. Mission runners should also make a bee-line to Salvage. It’s an expensive skill to aquire, but it is worth it in my opinion. I haven’t had a mission where the amount of money from salvage was less then the reward from the mission. In fact, salvage proceeds are usually an order of magnitude higher then the agent reward and loot combined. Sadly, running a salvage operation is slow since you have to approach to 5000 meters from each wreck, activate the salvager, and wait. After a battle, I have mixed feelings when I see all of the salvageable wrecks strewn about.

Keep track of which skills you received in character creation and buy equipment that uses these skills. When I started, I had very high drone skills and I didn’t even realize it. There I was, blasting away with rail guns, and my drone bay was empty. Once I got some drones to take advantage of my skills, battles got a lot easier.

Finding a corporation (similar to a guild in WoW) is not strictly necessary to start. I suggest getting a feel for the game first and looking around for a corp that fits your style. There always seem to be many corps recruiting, so you’ll have a lot of choices.

Eve has a 14 day trial, much like WoW with similar restrictions. Once you finish the trial, you can turn it into a real account by subscribing or buying game cards. I suggest using the trial to see if you like the game.

Have fun.

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