New Eden doesn’t need to change for Eve – Adam needs to get over himself

Mining Away

Mining in EVE

I was recently emailed a link to (thank you David) this post by CrazyKinux, a special edition of the EVE blog banter. In it he asks people to come up with ideas and solutions to get more females playing EVE Online. He has turned it into a contest and I thought that since I know a little about the subject I’d give it a whirl and see what I could come up with. Being a female gamer, and one playing (and loving) EVE Online doesn’t mean I’m a pro on the subject but I certainly do have an opinion. Before you go read the post yourself I’d implore you NOT to read the comments section. I found it incredibly insulting that some people made suggestions such as “make the game more casual” – what? EVE is by far the most casual game I’ve ever played, and I’ve played more then my fair share. Other suggestions included “make it involve less math” – again, what? How does implying women don’t enjoy the game because it requires thought make any sense at all. We’re not all mindless drones looking for the next clone out there to play. If we were, chances are we’d happily be in some other game.

It’s not EVE the game that needs to change in order to entice the females in society to play (remember, this is all my personal opinion). It’s the PLAYERS who have to change. Trolls, and rude comments are a sure way to get me not playing a game. I simply don’t have the patience nor the tolerance for that sort of behavior.

I understand that EVE is a complicated game with a steep learning curve. This is true for any player, whether you are male or female. Gender has nothing to do with it. Having a buddy system and someone to play with who can patiently explain the game to you goes a VERY long way. I’m not implying we need our hands held like a child, but someone to at least go over the basics. It can be confusing to learn what possible goals are available in EVE, and where to start. Figuring out what about the game will appeal to your significant other or the fairer sex is half the battle. There has to be SOMETHING that will appeal to them from the start. If there’s absolutely nothing that will entice them to play then it doesn’t matter who they are they’re just not going to like it. Which is ok. We don’t all enjoy all games.

I tried EVE about a year ago and never stuck with it. The curve was too high and I was dealing with a lot of other games, so I set it aside. The second time I came back (three months ago now?) I had a friend help me around New Eden, I managed to land myself in a corp of online friends (we’re tiny, but I know everyone at least) and I even started up a second account I loved it that much. Having someone show me what I could do and what possibilities were available was a HUGE deal to me.

The game doesn’t need to be made more simple. There’s no reason to remove the math, or the spreadsheets. I personally am not much of a PvP fighter, but the thrill of ducking into lowsec and out is something I wouldn’t want to see change. I’ve lost ships, I’ve attempted invention, and sure I do a lot of mining but I absolutely love the game and don’t feel that it needs to change to cater to those who may simply not be into that genre. Some of my best gamer friends are females and were it not for their very exciting posts about EVE I probably wouldn’t have wanted to try it out so bad. Were it not for my friends playing, I would have never stuck with it. Now that I’ve given the game a fair chance I’m incredibly glad I did.

Perhaps this post didn’t go into a whole lot of details on what needs to change, but that’s just because I am content with how things are. Would I like to see more gamers in general? Of course! It doesn’t matter what sex they are, I just like to see gamers.

Be sure to check out the other entries to this contest:

About Stargrace

Just another female gamer with too much time on her hands.

Posted on April 20, 2010, in EVE Online and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. 16 Comments.

  1. Nice post! Getting the community to behave better is going to be a tough request to fill. Trash talk is a part of the culture and has strong ties to meta gaming elements in the game.

    I’m inclined to believe that the addition of Incarna (walking in stations) will be a big draw for female gamers. Blowing up internet ships isn’t always the most appealing thing to do, but being able to cultivate the ownership of a bar or a clothing shop will give the game new life. There is a strong social component to doing so. Maybe female gamers will find something additionally appealing when the winter expansion comes out.

  2. I agree with your observations completely (even though my “less math” was used unattributed) 🙂

    I feel like I’m cheating a bit by reading all of these other posts before deciding whether to do on myself. The knee-jerk reaction in early replies was “Incarna will let them make cute outfits” & etc.

    It’s about competent pilots. The pitch over voice comms is secondary.

    Changing out the community may not yield the best results (or even filtering those we don’t like) as the whole is the sum of the parts–Butterfly effect and all that. Some whiney waste of a pilot you abandon to pirates in a minefield might be a member of a large corporation….etc.

    Rather than Incarna, I hoping that EvEGate will open New Eden up to more (like-minded) players. I guess I don’t understand what Incarna has to offer beyond colorful suits on over-endowed avatars (and you know they will be.)


    • Well, if Incarna delivers on its promise than each player will have an actual persona that isn’t limited to the confines of a portrait. Once that feat is achieved we’ll have new ways to earn ISK, bet that ISK on mini-games, and control bots that give out contracts.

      Incarna signals a shift away from the static mechanics of chatting, brokering, and earning. They’re trying to give us a true virtual world instead of a place to simply blow each other up. I think it’s compelling…and I’m not sure why more people aren’t more interested in see it come to fruition.

      Incarna = Immersion.

  3. I dunno, my gut feel is that a hard scifi setting is never going to attract as many women as men. That just isn’t the fanbase for that genre.

    If there was any one thing I’d change about EVE to make it more female friendly, I’d totally revamp the chat interface to make it bigger, more intuitive, and easier to use and understand. (Admittedly this was from my 14 day trial experience, but I found it very awkward to use.)

    And maybe find a better way to point new players towards helpful organisations and channels.

  4. It’s not particularly surprising how many of the posts on this subject from women gamers amount to “stop acting like flaming idiots all the time.”

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