CCP Games is no stranger to controversy within its created universe, and EVE Online players aren't new to voicing their displeasure. Recently players have been concerned about the direction of EVE Online, particularly how recent changes to resources and industry have shaken the game to its core.
In a new article on Kotaku, EVE journalist Lee Yancy dives into the issues surrounding the outcry, which some are dubbing a second "Summer of Rage," hearkening back to a previous period in the history of New Eden. The long and short of it is multiple factors across the past few years, from the massive changes to the Rorqual, an capital class industry ship that was turned into a massively powerful mining vessel, all the way to the current resource reallocation by CCP Games, changes to industry gameplay and even the ongoing war effort that has now lasted for a year between the player alliances.
Yancy describes a situation where players used the changes of the Rorqual ships to their advantage, amassing large quantities of materials in no time thanks to the ability to multibox the capital ship easily. As such, an "arms race of epic proportions" began among the different power blocks in New Eden. This turned one of the most powerful and expensive ships in EVE's history, the Titan, into something that was relatively easy to manufacturer by the large alliances.
As such, and as something we've documented here on MMORPG.com, EVE Online's creators CCP Games have been tweaking the game, attempting to reintroduce scarcity and risk into New Eden. As such, the resources needed to build these...erm...Titanic war machines was made harder to come by. However, as Yancy describes, the "damage was seemingly done."
The "Age of Scarcity" as this period in New Eden is known as has affected all aspects of gameplay. The prices of minerals has risen, the cost of ships, even lower-tier hulls, are more expensive to manufacture and buy on New Eden's marketplaces. Inflation has rocketed in New Eden, something which players still feel to this day (seriously, replacing my Machariel hurt).
It doesn't help, as Yancy states, that EVE Online is seeing a player war that is unparalleled in the cost to the alliances and the brutality players are showcasing on the battlefields. The mental toll, coupled with the cost to keep up the war machines of the vast empires has steadily risen over the last year, sometimes to its breaking point.
"On top of the scarcity patches, roughly one year ago, one of the largest wars in EVE’s history began. The war has raged hot for nearly a year, causing destruction on a scale that is unheard of in EVE’s 18 year history, further diminishing the resource stockpiles of players and driving the cost of the vessels players need to fight in the war through the roof. Outside of the financial toll the war has taken on player wallets, the mental stress of the conflict also seems to be building in players on all sides."
As such, players have been urging others to unsubscribe from the game or perform actions that will make CCP listen to theplayers, such as shooting up the Jita monument as on Redditor suggests. Other aspects of EVE Online are felt to be getting more attention than others by some players, as CCP Games is continually iterating and tweaking its new player experience to stem the tide of accounts which drop off quickly after creation. Couple this with monetization issues, player numbers seemingly dropping off and more and you've got the perfect recipe for a Summer of Rage 2.0, as it were.
It's a fascinating read, and provides more insight into one of the more unique player groups in MMORPG gaming. You can check out the full piece and interview with CCP Games on Kotaku.