First of all, I would like to clarify that this blog is intended for those who have acquired at least some knowledge of the game. Technical terms will be used throughout this blog, though I will to highlight and define each at the first time used. Okay, now the technical stuff is out of the way. Let's get on with it, shall we?
Two years, god, I don't even know where to start. As the saying go, let's start at the very beginning. We will recount the steps I have taken to become the pilot I am today from the moment I first logged in.
Day One - Some years ago.
Without any knowledge at all, I started EVE without spending a minute researching it at all. I saw the ad on a web site with two pretty Naglfars on it, which was the symbol of Red Moon Rising Expansion at the moment, all I wanted to do was to jump right into a ship and engage the first target I see.
The game took half an hour to download to my hard drive. Another half an hour went by while I rushed through the technical issues, the EULA, naming my account, and creating my character like a surfer riding the waves.
And so I woke up in a system in the Caldari State as a graduated pilot from the State War Academy. It has been too long for me to even remember precisely which system it was. My idea of the game changed from a fast-paced space combat game into a more mellow, yet tedious game with one of the steepest learning curve during the first several minutes I spent on the tutorial. Due to my own stupidity, I spent the next hour and a half flying through 52 jumps of lowsec, abbveriation of low security space, to pick up one charge of Iron Charge S I bought from the market as instructed by the tutorial. The round of ammunition I bought turned up less than 2 jumps from where I woke up. Lesson one learnt: double check everything.
I spent the next fifteen minutes multitasking between finishing up the tutorial and familiarizing myself with the UI and most importantly, the market, looking through ship after ship. Every player starts out with five thousands ISK. Everything available on the market, ranging from commodities to the most advanced equipment money can buy, is far from my reach. "Don't be so discouraged. You have just started the damn game." I told myself. And I pressed on. At this precise moment, I found what I had called the ship for me, the Merlin. It was merely a Frigate. "Start small, but dream big" the saying goes, and that was what I did. Keeping the goal small and reachable is the key for starting players like myself, I set out on a conquest. A Merlin might have been seem small enough a goal for me to be able to compete within hours. Oh boy, was I wrong. Along with the ship came the technical stuff that I had to spend time researching and carefully calculate. "Do I have to skill to fly the Merlin?" "What is an Afterburner?" "What is the difference between hybrid turret and laser turret?" "What are a good 'setup' for a Merlin?" The questioning continued as I rushed through the belt of a 0.6 system in my Ibis fitted with a Civilian Afterburner, a Civilian shield booster, and two Civilian Gatling Railguns, killing Guritas pirates for the bounty on their ships.
Some hours later, I rushed to Kisogo. A Merlin is on sale there for three hundreds thousands ISK. I couldn't wait to get into that Merlin. It was my first trophy in EVE. You know that moment where you stand in front of your peers and parents holding up the diploma? It resembled that feeling in a smaller, more subtle way. And so, after hours of getting that last rat, short term for NPC pirate, in the belt just to get to the next while carefully planning out skill training, comparing one setup to the next, I was in my Merlin fitted with two 125mm Railgun Is, two 'Malkuth' Standard Launcher Is, a Civilian Shield booster, a small and two micro shield extenders, one 100mm and one 50mm reinforced steel plates, I set out for my first adventure in the New Eden.
In the meanwhile, I talked with the people in the State War Academy and the Newbies Help Channel to gather as much information as humanly possible without overloading my brain. EVE, as per my understanding at the time, is a world of struggle where Darwinism thrives. Knowledge will forever remain the key to success. I was not far from being right, and even further from being wrong. The Eden is filled with opportunists, scammers, and ruthless players that I had to, and still do, stack my odds against. The general consensus was to join a player-controlled Corporation as soon as possible. I came into contact with my very first mentor, to whom I owe much respect and much greater debt for walking me through the first rough stage of the game. Because EVE is world for survival, new players are always preys for the more experienced. The number one rule is never trust anybody. This rule, of course, should be both absolute and relative. You have to trust somebody to earn theirs. On the other hand, trusting the wrong person only means your end is in sight.
After a lengthy talk with my mentor, I logged off for the night holding pride in my Merlin. It was able to crush the biggest rat on the block in a 0.5 system with ease. I intended to venture into lowsec for more challenge the day after.
And so my first entry recounting my first day of EVE is over. It was a February night, the year of 2006. Stay tuned.