This is the diary & short stories of Shalee Lianne Cerra, in the fictitious universe, New Eden, in the game of Eve Online. Come be a part of her world...

Friday, February 17, 2012

Blog Banter 33: I Heart Newbies Too

Blog Banter 33: The Capsuleer Experience

Like mana from Valhalla (yes I know I'm mixing my religious metaphors), the latest Dev Blog by CCP Legion asks questions which make for perfect Blog Bantering. To quote him "...we want to make the first days, weeks and months in EVE enjoyable and not just something ‘you have to plough through in order to get to the good stuff’" and the newly formed Player Experience team will focus on "...where and why people lose interest in EVE...".

"We invite you to pour your heart (or guts) out and tell us what you think is good or bad with the current new player experience and what you think could be done about the problems."

So let's get self-eviscerating. Banter on. 

Great topic!

Just yesterday I was chatting with a friend about EvE.  He had tried it several years ago but couldn't get into it, and naturally I had to poke and prod him to find out why.

Basically, he is your typical gamer who wants to have fun with the game shortly after purchasing it.

Not 'three months from now'.

That is the biggest problem with keeping new players interested in the game.

Gamers have a short attention span and they want instant gratification, they don't want to buy this 'great spaceship game', download it, spend hours upon hours learning the basics just to go shoot little red x's out in a mission, over and over and over.

Most new players never really understand the depth and potential of EvE and so they give up before they truly delve into everything the game has to offer.

My suggestions:

Give new players better resources.

The other day, I was doing some market on my alt who is in an NPC corp and I was watching corp chat while doing my work.  I notice a new guy who really has no idea what is going on.  Hoping that on the off chance the guy isn't a troll or spy, I convo him and ask if he wants to go out and pvp with my corp.  I get him on comms, give him our system and he flies out.  He is in a frig, we help him fit it best we can.  One of my corpies takes him over to a system that sells skill books and hooks him up.  He goes out on a roam with us and shoots at some flashy pirates.

Thats a best case scenario for new players who want to try pvp.

Unless you have someone there holding your hand when you start EVE, you really dont have a clue whats going on.  There is a lot of information out there but you really dont know where to find it when you first start.  There are some nice people out there who will help you but its hard to find find those people amongst the scammers and trolls.

There needs to be a better way to get the right information to the new players.

I love the idea of EvE University and I would have probably joined it had I known about it when I first started.  Corps like that should be advertised to new players.  In fact, it would be a good idea to have some kind of recruitment board just for new players that is policed by CCP- meaning don't let the scammers/trolls/griefers have access to our new players until they get their feet wet.  (I know we have a recruitment channel but from what I understand of it, it mostly sucks)

Aka, have a page with the top five noob friendly, trusted corps among various things you can do in EVE.  It could be something like top 5 industrial corps, top 5 wormhole corps, top 5 militia corps, etc.

This way the new player would have an idea of where they should first apply.

Give new players better skills and ships to start with.

I think a new player should start with more than one ship.  There should be at least three or four that do different things.  Lets have a mining frigate, a pve ship, a pvp ship, and maybe something e-war.

Give them very basic skills to do very basic things.

It really sucks to try to recruit friends into EVE and once they do get on the game, tell them 'okay we have your training que set up, you can come fly with me in a week!"

Thats fucked.

I think a new person should at least be able to start with a frig that can tackle without having to train up skills.  That should be a given.

Also in their hangar they should start with a few other things like a few skill books and some ammo.

Newbie Locations!

I think there should be a couple of noobie star systems on lockdown that allow only the new noobie pvp ships.  They should be able to go into these star systems and fight other noobs.

I think it would be great fun for a new player starting out to get a taste of pvp without the stress of losing your ship and having to find a way to replace it.

Allow only specific noob ships in the systems so they cannot be griefed.  Allow noob ships to respawn in the stations in the system.  Have several different types of ship (prefitted) for the player to choose from.  Let them go out and blow these ships up with abandon.

You could have people older players volunteer to lead mini fleets and give pvp advice maybe.

It could be like pvp bootcamp.

Players would get a taste of what EVE can be like, and it would excite them to go out there and try fleeting and fighting for real.

You can't just tell new players what EVE can be like for them months down the road, you need to show them as soon as possible.  You need to let them experience it right from the begining.

Find more responses here.


  1. I would tend to agree that new players need better ships and maybe even some skill spec training of some kind. I would support an area where trial accounts can access exclusively and either do pve/pvp against themselves. They should be able to come and go from the "noob" systems to normal space whenever they during their trial period.

  2. Hmmm. Given the kind of cost (in game) that it would take to create a capsuleer in the first instance - I could very well imagine the Caldari Megacorps each owning one system that is patrolled to the nth degree by their own internal police forces.

    Similarly, the relevant powers in each space... tribal for Minnie, family for Amarr, erm, ah... consumable for Gallente (Quafe etc?).

    In any case, it could be a training ground with experienced capsuleers being locked down on entry (all high slots and offensive mids disabled).

  3. Nice reading. A few month ago i started a new character (gallente) to try the NPE a bit. If you stick to the tutorials you end up having 2 or 3 atrons, 2 navitas an incursus and a tristan (might not be accurate but something like that). Further more you are given a iteron mark I as far as i know. This is not a bad setup for start but you might lack some fittings as you only get one AB etc.

    I don't think newbies need more skills at the beginning but a guiding hand to make there first skill queue. Training skills to level 1 only takes a few minutes or some times 30 minutes, it should be possible to get an AB fitted frig with weber (maybe even scrambler) in a few hours.

    I don't see a lack of possibilities for a new player but a lack of opportunities. If they want to do quick pvp where should they go? Low Sec is pretty much dead and 0.0 is far to organized for a newbie. He will be stuck in a bubble and die before he knows what hit him. A FFA Arena system for new players (accounts not older than 2 or 3 weeks) might be a solid training ground. But most of all it is important to get them soon engaged with player corps. There is an advertising system for corps recruiting where the corp can choose "new player friendly".
    In order to increase this feature this could be enhanced with a player rating system where players who joined that corp through this advertisement can rate it. Something like how much the advert reflects the reality and first impression rating. Followed by a second rating 2 or 3 month later. How to prevent exploits will be another topic here but out of scope atm.

  4. Whilst I think CCP endorsing player-run organisations like EVE University is a hotbed for centension and controversy, I can certainly see the benefits for the confused rookie.

    The rookie/veteran integration issue you summed up beautifully with "...we have your training que set up, you can come fly with me in a week" could certainly do with some attention. More base skills is certainly one possibility, but I'm really quite taken with the idea of role-specific or pre-fitted rookie ships. Greater initial ship variety and versatility in a controlled environment could be quite engaging.