Gordo’s Gaming Blog

My adventures in the many worlds of gaming.

Posts Tagged ‘Flow theory

EVE Online – My experience so far.

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So, my EVE trial has been running for three days now. And in all honesty, I’m still totally in the dark in this game.  It’s immensely confusing compared to most games I’ve played before. So many skills to level, so much to buy, so much to do. I feel as though whatever I’m doing isn’t an effective use of my time, and I’m finding upgrading my ship very difficult. Maybe you’re not intended to upgrade your ship until you’ve been playing for a long time, but at the moment, I’m in the dark as to what I need to do. Should I do mining? Should I do missions? Should I buy and do engineering? It’s all very confusing.

So far, I’ve been sticking to mining. Filling up my (tiny) cargo hold, returing to the station, processing, then selling. It works, but I’m getting money very, very slowly. I tried to do a mission but it seems the next one in the chain leading on from the tutorial requires more cargo space than I have! So that route’s been put on ice for the time being.

I’d forgotten what it feels like to be a total ‘noob’ to a gamestyle. It was the same when I first played the traditional MMORPG. It took some getting used to, but that was designed as an inherently easier model to understand. This model is designed to occupy players of all levels (I’m using the term in a figurative sense – there are no ‘levels’ in EVE), and as such, it’s extremely confusing and daunting to a newcomer. It’s as though none of my skills from any other game are much use in EVE, and as such, each time I play I’m trying to learn more than is possible. I guess it’s because I, as a player, had gotten to the stage where I thought myself fairly capable, and savvy enough to pick up new games at the drop of a hat. Oh, how wrong I was.

The sad thing is, I’m finding the game so confusing and difficult to advance, that I’m not enjoying the game. I hear reports from people about all these different events going on throughout the galaxy, and how exciting it is, and I just think – I wish I could be excited by that, I really do. But I can’t, unfourtunately. Not yet. I’ve still got over 10 days left of my trial, and I hope something can spark the magic that’ll cause me to enjoy this game, but as it stands, sadly, I won’t be starting a subscription.

It’s weird, as not every game I’ve played has caught me and dragged me in from the outset. Morrowind comes to mind. You may have read my review of it, and seen how much I enjoyed it. As I mentioned, it wasn’t a game that caught me instantly, but after a couple of hours of playing, I was hooked. I expected maybe to experience the same thing in EVE, but I didn’t. I just remain confused and overwhelmed. Everything seems slow. I see people talking about billions of ISK, yet at the same time I’m only pulling in 50,000 or so from a couple of mining trips. And when looking through the market, all items that I could use to upgrade my ship are waaay out of my price range.Flow

It’s interesting. Recently, at Keen & Graev’s blog, I was reading an article about the ‘Flow theory’ and it’s implementation in games. It got me thinking about my experiences in EVE. I consider myself a fairly average gamer, I enjoy most mainstream games, I have a fairly average playstyle. So why can’t I become immersed in EVE? Why can’t I truly enjoy it like so many other plays do? Am I expecting too much, too fast? The way I see it, is on the flow graph, the challenge is too high, and abilities gained too low. Therefore I’m anxious. Not having fun, sadly.

I hear people say it truly takes months to really ‘get into the flow’. But the thing is, I’m paying for this game, and I can’t see the point in paying for several months when I’m not enjoying it. That’s just my logic I guess. By that very same logic, it’s impossible for me to enjoy this game. I won’t pay for it if I’m not having fun, and I won’t have fun if I’m not paying for it. I guess I may just need to accept this isn’t the game for me. That’s not to say I’ve totally abandoned hope – I still have some days left on my trial, so I’ll continue, and see what happens. The problem is, I think ‘I’ll start EVE up and give it a go’ then I think of another game I could play, an instant hit, and I get that game out instead. Maybe in a world of so many instant hits, there isn’t room for the games that require dedication any more.


Written by Gordo

June 26, 2008 at 4:40 pm

Posted in EVE Online, MMO

Tagged with , , ,