The Noob Experience

This image seemed to get linked daily in IAC, usually whenever a new player asks something about the UI or game mechanics.
In my first post I said:

I am a new player but not a total noob. My first trial was two years ago and last year I actually was subscribed for three months or so

Yeah, that trial two years ago? On my first day then I saw this pic for the first time.

I think it’s a load of BS!

In my opinion EVE is quite easy to get into, but challenging to truly master – which is no problem: skill comes with practice!

Of course this may be easy to say for someone who starts the game with some previous experience. Well, I think my only real advantage is that some part of my brain remembered most of the various acronyms in use.

I won’t deny that EVE is very complex and there is very much to learn about its mechanics.

So, how can a newb take the “cliff”?

Easy! The solution is focus and research.

I don’t live in wormholes, so I don’t need to know about their mechanics.
Do they interest me? Sure! Will I check them out? Definitely! But before I go I’ll get some intel.

As rookies today we have it easy. EVE has been around a long time, so we don’t have to boldly go where no man has gone before! – If anything we are standing on the shoulders of giants.

I like PvP, so I researched it: aggression mechanics, guides specifically aimed at newbies, ship loadouts, videos. You name it and it’s out there, one use of google away.
The same goes for PvE, industry or whatever else strikes your fancy.

There’s no need to find out everything for yourself when some players have compiled all the info you need.

I want to stress ship fittings especially. There is absolutely no reason to fly around with embarrassing “failfits”. You are not the first guy to sit in that ship, so just use the cookie cutter for now.
There’s enough time to come up  with your own awesome fitting variants once you understand what makes a good fitting – from looking at various ship loadouts its obvious to me that they need focus, too.
Only one type of tank, either short- or long-range weaponry. In EVE ships resemble scalpels, not swiss army knives – which makes sense for a MMORPG.

Having said all that: you still need to put all this theory into practice. Especially if you are like me and came here because of the awesome PvP EVE offers.

There seem to be three schools of thought on newbie PvP, lets look at them:

A. The Carebear Trap

You can’t PvP till you have X skills.

B. Cannon Fodder

You need to find a corp that lets you tackle for them.

C. Get A Rifter

You’ll lose a ton of ships but they are cheap anyways.

A. Don’t do this! This is why I quit my previous three month gig. You’ll get bogged down, will never feel ready. You’ll get used to being afraid and everything will start to feel futile.
The other guy will always have more skills, right?
Well, who cares! – you can still blow him up!

Sadly some people seem to actively spread this myth, to the point of discouraging any noob who wants to have a go at Pew Pew.
Just yesterday I was told that I’m to “young”  to PvP.

I must be doing something wrong then… just can’t figure out what that is!

Now, B. and C. are not mutually exclusive but I think B. is still a bit pessimistic. To me it sounds like you might as well not be there. Not really making a difference.

But I have no experience with that, so I might be wrong! I’ll talk about what I’ve been doing – option C.

It is definitely possible and you’ll feel pretty satisfied when you get a kill.

Yesterday my luck was out – four losses, no kills. My worst roam so far.
But I find I learn much more from my losses and will become a better pilot because of them.
Note however that in each of these fights I was the initial aggressor – apart from this maybe, we were both hunting the same guy and ran into each other, I think – so I am far from being a hapless victim.

Also I do stupid mistakes, even if I got much of the theory down. An Incursus got away because I have accidentally been fitting disruptors instead of scramblers, so his microwarpdrive didn’t shut down.
After “fixing” my fit I would’ve been able to tackle a Nemesis had I still had the disruptor!

So, I learned that there’s a time and a place for each module.

As for the cheap part, sure, to begin with your ships cost next to nothing but they get more expensive fast – I’m a fan of the new shiny as much as the next guy.
I’m not talking about ships – got currently no desire to get into a cruiser and for some reason I just don’t like destroyers – I’m talking about gear: rigs, T2 armor rep and damage control do add up and next Sunday I’ll add T2 guns to my arsenal.

Maybe in that part I’m doing it a bit wrong.

So killing a few rats here and there might not cut it much longer. I’ve been looking at the static DED complexes. 1/10s and 2/10s seem easy enough, sadly my first two runs haven’t  yielded good loot but I know (second hand) that if you get lucky some of the faction stuff will fetch a pretty penny.

I’m also considering sidetracking my training a bit to do some Exploration.

I haven’t talked about the new player experience in terms of how the game welcomes you: take the time to do the career advancement missions, you’ll learn a lot.
The only one I am a bit dissatisfied with is the advanced military one – it teaches you about some PvP concepts but can’t compare to the real deal.

But I admit I have no idea how that could be made better!

The Sisters of Eve Arc is okay, too, if a bit too long in my opinion.

Also, don’t underestimate the community, most people by far I met have been pretty chill and very helpful, too.
At worst my convo was rejected. I fancy that I am a chill guy myself, so if you made bad experiences it just might be your own fault.

To try to translate a German proverb: it shouts out of the woods as you shout into them!
– hope that’ll make sense.

There’s only one thing left to say: it’s a sandbox, do what you want and don’t let anyone tell you what to do!

But if you need some inspiration check this out!


7 Responses to “The Noob Experience”

  1. I agree with the whole research thing. I have tried to tell a lot of people to just not be scared of EVE that if they want to do something open up ye olde google and search for it.

    Sadly most people don’t want to spare 30 minutes to research something they just want to pick up a sword and hit something over the head with it.

    • Definitely!

      The skillsystem makes EVE pretty casual friendly but only in the sense that you don’t have to play every day to stay in the game or get ahead.
      It can be pretty overwhelming though, so in my book it is an advantage to start ‘late’, simply because I can avoid all the mistakes everyone else did years ago.

      Maybe todays gamers are too used to go along the ‘rails’ everyone seems to be putting in their games these days.

      In fact the only relative recent sandbox game with any success I can think of would be Spore.

      On further thought:
      That is a bit sad in my opinion, sandbox type games are for me at least the only ones with any replayability. Of course 10 years ago I would’ve played the shit out of CoD multiplayer but as I get older I find I lack the patience to get good enough with twitch games to compete, so I only go through the singleplayer. Now these games have a pretty good story for a shooter, reminded me of a bit ‘better’ action movies.
      Sadly that is also how long it takes to finish the game: the length of a movie.

      If I was cynical I’d say that todays games lack truly engaging sandbox play to sell us the next game ASAP!

      Well, thats it for my should-go-to-bed rant.

  2. I just wish I had more time to play!

    On the positive side: when I can only have a session on the weekends my skill training feels much faster! 😉

  3. Option 3 all the way, man!
    Really glad Eve still gets new players like you.

  4. I totally agree with you. In my first week of trying out soloing, I learnt way more about PVP than in the 8 months I had been playing previously. You are constantly put in situations where you have to make the decisions for yourself. You have to learn what ships types are, and what you can and can’t engage.
    Also, option 3 is just way more fun! Learning to conquer the fear of dying is a huge step. No guts no glory!

    Great blog btw. I love reading about new players’ experiences, keep it up 🙂

  5. Marc Scaurus Says:

    Great post once again. I do think that options B and C in the schools of thought regarding newbie pvp are really aspects of the same concept, which is to grab something affordable and go die a lot. B does have some negative connotations, since (as you put it) you would basically just be cannon fodder for other more experienced players.

    You are definitely going about things the right way though – the only skills you need are the requisites for a point and some guns and you can PVP to your heart’s content. I’ve personally seen pilots with 50mil+ SP that had no idea what they were doing in PVP, costing them lots of ISK in the process. You will be better than them with only 10 mil SP but loads of cheap losses from which to learn.

    • I think I should clarify B.

      What I meant was the viewpoint that the only place in PvP would be flying a “disposable suicide tackler” – some comments I read even went as far as to forgo guns in the setup for such a ship cause the newb “wouldn’t do any damage anyways”.

      That just sounds unfun as shit.

      I think if a newbie participates in a fun and meaningful way in a gang it would actually be the Get A Rifter option – which I now after your comment provided something to think about – stopped to view as “solo all the way”.

      Still, I bet from flying solo I learn way faster than I would by tagging along but maybe that is just how I’m wired.

      BTW my first million SP is almost complete!

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