Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Flabbergastingly Asinine Questions (and answers)

[Last updated on 2009/10/28]

Q: Why do you write stuff about EVE-Online ?

A: Because it's the fastest way for me to do away with ideas floating in the back of my head, and to make room for other stuff.

Q: Why do you write nasty stuff about EVE/CCP ?

A: Because I'm one of those people who lack a rich inner life and instead depend on frustration, curiosity or outright bafflement to trigger creative ideas. There's no shortage of the aforementioned triggers with EVE or CCP.

Q: Why not just keep all your negative thinking to yourself and go slith your wrists like an emo girly girl instead of posting publicly against the best game evar ?

A: Because it's the internets and I have a duty to share my views with the world like everyone else. You on the other hand are self-trolling by forcing yourself to read this crap, and I feel sorry for you.

Q: Why make another blog about EVE and not just post on EVE-O forum like everyone else ? Are you too cool for school ?

A: To question 2: yes, I am.
Generally, the EVE-O boards are a waste of time for that kind of content, for all involved. They're functionally miserable, pointlessly ninja-censored, and the signal to noise ratio in there is such as to make any attempt at constructive discussions vain.
A blog is a convenient format for the author(s) and casual reader(s) alike, and is not exclusive of other supports, such as topical webpages, wikis, standalone docs, but makes for a nice day-to-day link between those.

Q: Are you a CCP employee/affiliate/partner ?

A: No.

Q: If you were, would you disclose it here ?

A: Possibly.

Q: Are
Were you in BoB ?

A: Maybe.
Who ?

Q: If you were, would you disclose it here ?

I just did — maybe.

Q: What do you hope to achieve with these rants if you don't trust CCP with the betterment of EVE Online and their governance thereof ?

A: Wow, I put big words in your mouth, didn't I ? Here's another shovel of those.
Short version is: CCP may be inherently retarded, but I'm bettting on growing pains instead.

As much as I distrust the CCP of now, based on their track record and what shows of their corporate culture as seen from my armchair, I still have hope CCP may yet evolve into a smarter version of itself after enough times falling flat on its face.
Also, for all its pitfalls and limitations, EVE Online is one-of-a-kind among persistent online worlds, being the only (relatively) sandbox, (relatively) hardcore PvP, (massively) single-cluster example on market at this writing.
For someone who's interested in the platform/medium as a whole, and in procedural/sandboxy persistent online gameworlds especially, this is a game worth keeping tabs on, as it has become a reference in the industry (for better or worse) and informs any funding/production decision of future games of comparable style (just as WoW is for theme park-styled worlds).

Q: Then, if you're so clever, why don't you work at CCP instead of being mean to them ? (aha, served !)

A1: It could be because my ideas suck unwashed goats and hiring me would be a waste of CCP's resources, but I'm not the one to tell either way about this.

A2: Because I'm a parent and I want my kid to be able to look up to me and not feel embarrassed about his dad's job. For all I know, CCP is not at this time a company I would be proud to be associated with.

A3: Because CCP doesn't hire people like me, possibly due to a bad case of allergy to criticism. The day they start looking out for people who don't present as fanbois and yes-men, I'll be happy to help. Incidentally, there's one chance out of two this blog would then become pointless, and so this FAQ.

Q: Aren't you concerned you'll be flagged as an enemy of the party and get your accounts banned ?

A1: Last time I checked, which is never, constructive criticism wasn't ground for account banning (and would lack legal basis in most countries to be enforceable as part of a consumer level commercial contract if it was).

A2: I obviously don't rely on CCP's respect of the letter or spirit of their own rules to protect my in-game selves from summary disappearance, however:
  • most of my active characters are known and reputable enough that they could hardly vanish overnight without it being noticed,
  • due to my playstyle preferences, I don't cheat or do anything in-game that would be ground for a ban by any reasonable GM,
  • it would be way beyond CCP lacking PR skills to successfully sell a cover-up story such as cheating/h4xing/RMT'ing to the many players and the (fewer) CCP employees who have known me under various names for the past 4-5 years,
  • banning my accounts would be counterproductive for CCP as it would probably not result in the folding of EVEisBroken, which could subsequently thrive from the time free'd up for me to write about EVE and CCP in a less favorable light than now.
A3: Basically, I suspect even CCP's hammerfisted anti-dissent department is smart enough to have learned a page from previous EVE/CCP-related scandals spilling into the general media.

[If you're ever in my position, just document extensively all your interactions with the company before they start trying to axe you, keep traces and screenshots, get witnesses whenever you can, make sure the storage of your materials isn't at the publisher's mercy, make a trustworthy reputation for yourself both ingame and out, and cultivate good relations with non-affiliated press contacts and reputable personalities in and around the game.]

Q: If you aren't afraid of being banned, who are your characters in EVE ?

I'm a hardcore roleplayer, mixing up my characters in my out-of-game ramblings would hurt their feelings deeply, so I can't tell you that, sorry.

Q: How many accounts do you have, at least ?


Q: Who pays for your accounts, your mom so she doesn't have to see you upstairs ?

I'm all grownup now, and you pay for my accounts, I suspect.
I switched all my subs to GTCs sometimes around 2006, after I decided the game was worth my spare time, but the company's lacking ethics didn't warrant my paying customer endorsement.

Q: Were you at least in beta or are you just some noob looking for celebrity ?

I was briefly in beta, not very into it at the time. I'm generally a '04 noob.

Q: Why is your blog flagged as "Adult Content" when it's about a videogame that itself includes profanity filters ?

Because I suspect EVE players/makers may read it, and we're talking about a game culture that condones human trafficking, racism, mass extermination of civilians and social darwinism, but not colorful language, so I'm covering my metaphorical buttocks by having the reader pretend she's a grownup.

Q: Why do you use 'toon' instead of 'character', it's EVE ffs !

For that.

Q: How can you have a F.A.Q on day 1 of this blog ? Don't you need readers for that, or are you talking to yourself ?

Hey, it's a blog: of course I'm largely talking to myself (see top of the F.A.Q for why I write here in first place).

A2: The lion's share of the content here (at least for the first few weeks of blogging) has been floating around a limited circle of friends and EVE relations for a few months/years, as well as the idea of publishing it on some sort of website. All the questions above have arisen from the latter part of this process.

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