Hulk Smash!

I responded to Massively’s post on the upcoming Hulkageddon event in Eve Online. Where player corps give our prizes for ganking miners around the game. My reply as follows.

I don’t really feel passionate about this one way or another, which is ironic since I’m a miner. Eve is a sandbox game and players do what they want, fair enough. I do think this highlights some very poor game design elements on CCPs part however and conceptually it’s never good when players shut down an aspect of the game by bullying other players.

The biggest problem is really that this just highlights what a joke mining is in Eve as a profession. I make way more ISK doing other things than mining, I get most of my rare ore from reprocessing salvage and things like can flipping seems to be at an all time high. Mining ships are among the least interesting, least versatile and least useful in the whole game.

Wouldn’t it be more interesting and there be more combat options in the game that were designed for combat ships to be hanging out in space for length of time instead of shut up in stations? That’s not the design in Eve though as combat and all other high value ships are shut away and resources horded inside of stations while the least defensible ships are designed to be the only ones sitting out there in space.

Given the reality of the game then why not Hulkageddon? It’s not new news that CCP doesn’t give a fig about miners, why should the players?

Star Trek Online Beta Impressions

Some feedback I posted on the Star Trek Online Open Beta. Reposting here in case there is interest.

These are my initial impressions after 2 hours of play. It's only 2 hours but I think this is important as it's what forms my initial impression of the game.

* Space is way too crowded. Having ship after ship stacked up on each other gives the whole game way too much of an amusement park feel.

* Waypoints to missions and goals are very confusing to me if they even exist. Which they don't seem to. Not knowing where to go leaves players dead in the water.

* The overall pacing in the game feels slow and boring in ground combat.

* Distances in Space combat feels and looks too cramped and confusing. I'm often so close to things, particularly the borg cube, that I can't even see what's going on. The general distances make me feel like I should be able to throw rocks at the other ships. Definitely lacks that Trek Feel.

* Power management is good and gives that Trek Feel.

* Weapon arcs, shields and so forth all feel good and have that Trek Feel.

* Ship customization is great. Beef up the descriptions more please though.

* Skill descriptions are nice but some of the numbers leave me a bit flat. One ability gives me a 0.01 increase to something, which makes it seem pointless. Perhaps a more meaningful scale for players.

* I like the skills system but it's difficult to get a feel for how things should play out. Perhaps a suggested builds system similar to what you have in CO would help.

* I don't see why I don't have a list of targets in the system, right now the only way I can see to select things is via Tab, which doesn't work well, or manually select which seems just plain silly. This is Star Trek, we have sensors and all that. I should have a list of targets at least.

* I should have WAY more information about things on screen. I have to be right on top of something before I get the target name or can select it. Similar to the weapon ranges above, this just seems like a genre breaker for me out of the game and makes the whole thing feel like a silly DS game or something rather than an immersion driven MMO set in a virtual world.

Overall there seems to be a depth to the space combat that could be enjoyable but the presentation makes it feel like a shallow console game rather than a meaty MMO. If that's what you're going for cool, but I'm not left with a great impression of the game out of the gate.

  Originally published at Flagon With The Dragon.