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Original author: 
Jim Rossignol


As Eve trundles towards is tenth anniversary, and I baulk with disbelief that it has really been a decade since I quit PC Gamer and spent the summer playing Eve and Planetside 1, CCP have started rolling out celebratory things, including a fantastic space timeline that illustrates the rich backstory of the game’s universe. I was never particularly invested in Eve’s fiction, but it’s impossible to deny the work that CCP put into it, with an encyclopaedia of short stories and even a few novels.

Ten years! I put in five. You can read about them here. I wish I could go back. I miss you, Statecorp.

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EVE Online! Since the servers first rumbled to life nine years ago the deeply political, single-shard MMO has been a source of endless fascination for RPS, on a par with helicopters. How do they stay in the air?

But what’s happening in EVE? Last we heard, some of its most famous chaps were grumbling or rioting, followed by something that continues to feel like a controlled peace. We needed an update, and so it was that CCP sent over a crate containing Senior Producer Jon Lander, Lead Game Designer Kristoffer Touborg and Community Developer Sveinn Kjarval. Together, we would get to the truth.
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Eve Online Burn Jita

EVE Online's largest economic hub is currently under attack by a massive alliance of the game's most ruthless players, infamously known as "Goonswarm," and they may succeed in damaging it. For those who haven't heard of it, EVE is a gargantuan space-based MMO from developer CCP Games that's been home to several rich tales of high-stakes drama since it launched in 2003. The open-ended game is like a Hobbesian dreamworld in its no-security ("null-sec") areas, that are open to scamming, murder, corporate espionage, economic manipulation, ruthless warmongering, and mind-boggling heists. But many of EVE's law abiding players stay within safe high-security ("hi-sec") areas that have mostly protected them from null-sec raiders, much to the...

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A child has just keeled over from exhaustion on my factory floor. I could have stopped it; when they get to that state you can give them a glass of water and they get straight back to the production line. But I've found it's cheaper to give them training instead of water. If a kid's looking peaky I can spend a little cash to have him trained up. He'll get over his exhaustion and he'll work faster. It's a win/win situation. If I let them work to the cusp of collapse before training them I maximise the amount of time they can work. I don't have to hire new workers and I don't need to waste money on a water fountain.

Littleloud's Sweatshop has me making decisions like this all the time. Do I hire older, specialised workers or just go the brute force route of creating a large (but cheap) child workforce? There's even an elegance to it, finding methods within the rules of the game to win. The factory floor is like a black box in which anything goes.

It's a similar approach that led to the largest financial crash the world has ever seen. The events of 2008 are still something that experts don't fully understand, and for the large majority of people something barely comprehended. As we learn more about the events that led to the crash, then the more parallels arise between the unregulated systems of greed that led to the crisis and the systems in the games that we play. The tools game makers employ to allow and encourage players to shed their ethics and business sense are present throughout the markets involved with the crash.

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[EVE Online's Council of Stellar Management is a body elected by the players of the game to interface with the developers and help drive the direction of the MMO's development in directions that appeal to the player base. What are the opportunities and dangers of having such a body? CSM chairman Alexander "The Mittani" Gianturco explains.] CCP's spectacular fall from grace in the aftermath of the EVE Online Incarna expansion -- which resulted in drastic ...

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Many games feature invisibility in some form. An excellent moment I recall from my days in World Of Warcraft was necking an invisibility potion to run past a load of mobs I couldn’t fight, while my rogue friend stealthed his way through. (If only that game had more such emergent highs.) Anyway, the Invisible Bastard joy I want to talk about is probably only applicable to Eve Online, although I’d love to know about any parallels in other games. It’s a thing that stood out for me over the years and something I loved, because it spoke of persistence, human psychology, the value of patience and the delight in being a big meany. I would leave my laptop logged into Eve, with a character cloaked in various star systems, and do nothing, for weeks.

Why would I do that?
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