The Metamarket and the EVE Writer Project #TweetFleet

The EVE Writer takes off!

Without meaning to, I found out that a term I made up happened to be a word that some people actually use for the exact purpose I made it out to be.

The term I coined in my head was “metamarket,” and it refers to the creation of a market related to an existing product that adds value to the already existing product by virtue of that additional market being established.

I’ve told a handful of people that I wanted to establish some kind of metamarket to make ISK in EVE Online. As far as I understand it, even when you’re not playing the game, the mechanics of the game allow for blogs and websites to get some kind of ISK funding if they have advertisements, such as Eve News 24 or the EVE Battleclinic.

For me, that means that EVE has a sense of forward progression whether you’re in-game or out of it. As your skills train, you progress forward and gain new skills to help you become a better pilot. At the same time, with an existing metamarket, you also get the benefit of in-game monetary gain if you play your cards right in the physical world.

That made me want to think outside the box and see what else could be tapped as a business venture for my personal enjoyment, allowing me to further appreciate this intriguing out-of-game mechanic that ties in well to the universe of New Eden and increase my in-game assets as well.

To that end, I looked at my strengths and realized that since I enjoy writing, I might as well tie it into the EVE infrastructure somehow. After some consideration and a few hours of free blog building on WordPress, I came up with The EVE Writer, a place where players who want to haveĀ  announcements and advertisements tailor-made for their needs can invest some ISK into getting quality write-ups.

Whether they want advertisements for their corp on the forums, an announcement of a new feature for their EVE-related tool, or an editor for their EVE RP piece, I aim to provide that service. Folks who prefer to focus on doing what they do best, whether it be industry, PVE, PVP, or app creation, can let me handle how to tell everyone about what they’re doing in a positive, well-written manner that makes everyone happy.

That said, I hope advertising this here and through various means can reel in some curious folk who’d like to try out the service. In the meantime, I shall focus on real-life stuff and not get overly excited about this metamarket idea, as it can always blow up in my face.


An Incursion Back Into EVE Online #Tweetfleet

Late last week, I went back into EVE Online after a long hiatus. I was really afraid to go back and play the game because I’d forgotten how to fly the ship and do everything, but it seems I’m slowly getting the hang of it again.

I’m currently running the Blood Stained Stars Mission Chain for money, while I try to figure out how to skill my capsuleer and earn money. My long term goal has always been to make my own ships, but earning the money, material, and skillbooks necessary to make them well and fly them properly is going to give me some issues.

I do hope I can get a better understanding of the big picture soon enough, as I’d like to make some headway into my own ventures eventually.

Till then, some links.

My Post on the EVE forums asking for the skills I ought to look for and level up.

My EVEBoards character profile, listing my skills at present.

It’s a New Dawn, It’s a New Day, It’s a New Year, There are New Games…

… and I’m feeling good.

—- The Rest of the Post —-

2012 is a new year, and if the naysayers in this world would have it, the last year for humans to exist on the planet.

I don’t want to believe that. I mean, there’s so much to be thankful for.

Like Free Speech, and its counterpart, Using Words Responsibly.

Like Being Happy, and its counterpart, Choosing to be Angry.

And GAMES! Oh so many games!

This year, I choose to speak my mind more about the things that interest me, even if it makes me uncomfortable to open up in that way.

I will play the games I want and I will enjoy (or not enjoy) them at my leisure.

I will respect the minds of others, even if I disagree with their ideas.

I will not limit myself to one avenue of thought, and I will open up to other ideas and not act in a passive-aggressive manner to people of perceived authority.

I will not let the negativity of others invalidate what I feel towards a game.

I will balance my gaming with healthier pursuits.

I will finish that first book that’s been in my head and evolved since I was a kid.

I will define who I am by what I do and think, and not by what people think of me.

I will play more Final Fantasy XIV and maybe even get Final Fantasy XIII-2 on the PS3.

I will experience games I never thought to try out. That may include superhero MMORPGs.

I will keep writing about games!

I will stay smiling and awesome, the way I envision myself as being for the rest of my life.

In Skyrim: Going Down a Dark Path (spoilers)

Right now, I’m relatively powerful, but I still have trouble killing dragons. I have shiny Dwarven armor, and steel armor everywhere else, and I have a home and hearth for my use.

One of the issues I’ve not grown accustomed to while being in Skyrim is the nature of unintended consequences and everlasting regret. In life, you sometimes make a decision to alter the course of someone else’s fate, for good or ill. The thing is, it’s hard to make recompense for doing so, and harder still when you realize that, by trying to do something good, you’ve gone down a darker path than you would have realized.

In my travels, I had heard about a young man named Aventus Aretino, whom people were saying was disturbed. I hesitate to call him a boy, as he is too far gone in vengeance to be called innocent, and too far hardened to be the type of child who plays in the streets of a simple town.

I sought him out and found him trying to perform a ritual that would summon a dark power to aid him in a simple matter. I stepped in to try to stop him, and was instead mistaken for the dark power he sought.

With hope in his eyes, Aventus begged me to slay the headmistress of the orphanage he was heading to at the end of a week. He said that the headmistress was a cruel woman, and hinted faintly at the abuse of orphaned children.

Dark as his methods were, and strange as his request was, I remained silent, which he took as acceptance of the task. I needed to clear my mind of the darkness, and investigate if his allegations were true.

Heading to the orphanage, I found myself plagued by the thought of a child so warped by sadness and longing that he would drive himself to such dark methods to find peace. I needed to know the truth and let the authorities know of the travesty being committed if it were true.

The orphanage was quaint, but serviceable and, unlike the headmistress, was warm enough for the task of caring for abandoned and orphaned children. When I entered the main room, I heard the headmistress berating the kids and telling them they were unloved and that no one would ever adopt them because she would stop any attempt to do so. It broke my heart to know that Aventus’ claims rang true.

I was about to step back outside when the assistant of the headmistress attempted to talk to me in an attempt to explain the aberrant behavior. I knew she didn’t believe what she was saying, and so I remained silent.

I looked for a constable in that dark night, but none would talk to me about the events I had seen. It was as if the world had abandoned these children for an unknown purpose, and I could not do anything other than choose the happiness of the children and of Aventus with the assistant headmistress or the life of Grelod the “Kind.”

I went back into the orphanage that same evening, sneaking past the sleeping children, and ultimately, sitting behind the headmistress for what seemed like an eternity. Perhaps the unknown purpose the world had left for these children was to take me down a path of sadness as well, but I didn’t know it then. All I knew then was righteous anger mixed with the need to weigh my actions.

In any realm, there is free will that, in hindsight, feels like an illusion. We are bound by our minds to follow the path laid before us by our conscience, and whether we flounder or not in attempting to follow it, that is our path as set by our selves, immutable except through the loss of memory.

I gave up the path of law for the path of righteousness, or so I would have myself believe. I froze Grelod the kind that same night as she slept. I left the house, with no one the wiser. My transgression, I knew, would not be realized by anyone. Only that she had drowned in her sleep, frozen and blackened all over from debilitating frostbite.

The end of Grelod the kind was swift and merciful, I forced myself to think, and no one would know, I reminded myself.

I went back to Whiterun, to my own home, in the light of the morning. A courier had left a message for me as I entered the house.

Someone knew. Someone had come to tell me that they knew, and no amount of sleep or meditation would allow me to forget that like Aventus, I too had begun my way down a dark path.

In Skyrim: Lycanthropy and Madness, My Faithful Companions

The life of an adventurer is filled with trials. With death stalking me at every turn, I find that a stalwart companion can be good to have.

My only issue is that for myself, the companions who tag along with me are the insatiable lust for killing and the ramblings of a mad god.

In my travels, I have acquired lycanthropic powers that augment my physical strength greatly, but force me to feed on those I have killed in order to maintain my strength and lust for blood. I will not reveal how I acquired such a thing, but it was not the happiest day of my life to have fur where my scales used to be.

Furthermore, investigating an issue for a troubled old man lead me to enter an alternate realm of being, where I had to test my wits in order to escape the inner reaches of the mind of a dead king who was being tormented by Sheogorath, the Daedric Prince of Madness.

Despite leaving the place unscathed physically, I find myself always coming back to that day, feeling a bit unnerved. Would the Prince of Madness come for me one day to lead me on his path?

In Skyrim: Mundane Doings for the Average Argonian

For some reason, I could not think of a way to properly introduce Skyrim on to the blog, as its scope is as large as can be, with varying quests and capabilities being part of the equation of fun. I suppose I should start simply, then.

Meet Stillwater, my Argonian Jack-of-all-trades.After getting a stay of execution thanks to a dragon, he’s been doing all sorts of things to help the populace and terrorize the evildoers of the lands.

For starters, he’s… chopped wood, and frozen bunny rabbits and foxes for their carcasses. He’s also manipulated a set of relationships in Riverwood to allow a bard his comeuppance, because the bards I’ve met in this game tend to be a rather haughty lot. He’s mined, he’s dined, and he’s put swords to the grindstone for sharpening.

If that sounds rather boring, it probably is. It’s a testament, however, to the vastness of scope in the game, that one can do all those things, and still find time to kill dragons as the Dragonborn.

So far, nothing I’ve done has had far-reaching consequences for my game experience, though if there were far reaching consequences, I’d have this overwhelming tendency to research it in advance. For Skyrim though, I’ve found that some guides on enchanting that are most helpful, and I’ve only had to get help when I’m absolutely maddened by the nature of a quest.

Let’s end on a lighthearted note. Here’s an image of a dead foe who had his face caved in with an Ice Spike. Cheers.

Appreciating New Eden #EVEOnline #tweetfleet

Stream of consciousness post stemming from a few days of play. I wanted to write more, but I’ve been unable to do so due to my ISP keeping me from accessing Games and Geekery, and only Games and Geekery.

My plans for being in New Eden did not involve being shot down by NPCs because of sustained radioactive damage from a bloody rock that I couldn’t maneuver away from quickly enough. But it happened, and so I must accept it.

My plans for being in New Eden involved Planetary Interaction, PVE Mission Running, and an attempt at getting the necessary skills up to pilot a Dominix in the future with drone capabilities. Sadly, Trial players can’t actually train all the skills necessary for PI, and so I must accept it.

I want this game to succeed for the very reason that makes it niche: it is a world where the interactions make the game richer and more varied, where the systems are complex, and where the questions you ask yourself are as important as the choices you make.

What I’ve realized is that this is a game where the metagame is as important, if not doubly so, as the actual game. It’s also one of the most complicated, intricate webs of learning I’ve ever become entangled in.

Folks who want to do well must invest money into subscriptions over a long-term period, or at least enough to make enough in-game money to purchase PLEX to continue a subscription. To make the most out of your experience, the social aspect of the game involves not only finding a good corp, but finding a good corp that shares your timezone and general core values as a player or human being.

Skills get trained over the course of minutes, hours, and potentially, days. Knowing what you want to do is paramount, but when you start out, everything seems viable, and the way you train yourself in the beginning can only be good for the long-term survivability of your pilot as it takes minutes to begin.

Beyond a certain point, you have to start making big decisions. Do I take the cheap ship out and make less money from an activity, or risk losing a more expensive ship for a greater gain? Do I train the shorter timed skill first, or the more important skill?

Perhaps the one thing that made me appreciate the game, even in this short term I’ve been playing, is that there are fundamental hidden questions in everything you do in EVE Online.

“Do you give in to baser instincts in the name of new experiences and ‘fun’?”

“Do you treat EVE as a game, as a test, or as a business?”

“Do you sacrifice your core values for virtual goods and does it affect you on a personal level?”

I like asking myself these questions, and I like that it makes me think philosophically. I do believe I would like to devote more time to exploring this game on a subscription basis. My only concern is finding a AUS/NZ corporation to join that fits my schedule, and figuring out if I get to keep my free 21 days if I subscribe immediately,

In any event, I guess I’ll be looking at virtual stars in addition to LOTRO and Skyrim for the time being.

It’s Space Time! #EVEOnline #TweetFleet

Thanks to Stargrace of MMO Quests, Petter of Don’t Fear the Mutant, and a host of other Twitter and Google+ folk, I decided to try out EVE Online.

Originally, my interests shifted towards never trying out EVE, but I’ve been on a Space themed kick with my general television viewing that I thought to try it out. Because SWTOR won’t be releasing in the Philippines the same time as other parts of the world, I figured, it was either I try something new or go play Star Trek Online or Star Wars Galaxies, which I have tried before. The compulsion to try something new won out.

I’ve spent around two hours in the game so far, and it’s a little confusing at first, but not so bad. I have a spiffy Asian looking character who looks perpetually tipsy, and the starting Gallente ship has a nice asymmetrical look that I enjoy looking at.

I think that EVE has a tendency to bring out the serious strategist in a person, which is nice and all, but I do have some laid back goals during my stay in the game. The long-term goal of my stay is to build myself a ship of my own. The short and medium term goals are to create a character that can pilot that ship I made for PVE missions, and to make enough money to buy the materials to build the ship.

I don’t know if my interest will hold out, but it’s a nice diversion for a little while at least. Best of all, I’m learning little by little that there are people with different ways of seeing things in the EVE world, even if ‘m just talking to them on Twitter.

A Fresh Perspective

Yes, I'm milking a cow. It's a fresh perspective.

Just so everyone knows and can keep track, Civrot Stillwater, my Warden on the Landroval server, is actually my third Warden. I have two wardens on the Elendilmir server that I have left alone and have completely burned out on due to my experiences with the Esteldin/North Downs area.

Civrot, however, is taking a different course of action by moving through Evendim and skipping most of North Downs other than to complete book quests once hitting the right levels. I can get there immediately through some fast travel skills, and am generally inclined to believe that this may be the time when I can really get into the game and enjoy the character.

Strangely enough, I have not purchased a house, even though I love housing. I’m saving the money to purchase tradeskill goods for alternate characters that can help the main in various ways, such as through making food or jewelry or shields.

This fresh perspective gives me hope that I can actually stick with LOTRO for a while, even though I want to play EQ2’s expansion and Skyrim eventually. Since I can go without subbing for a while, I don’t see many issues there. All I need is to unlock everything I need to do, and I should be set, and that feels liberating to the extent that I want to go and play more.

Have any of you ever felt this way about a new perspective? Let me know, alright?

Bothered by a Decision: Failing The Month of Gradual MMO/Money Disuse

I was supposed to finish a post about quests in games, but I’ve been putting it off because I’m bothered by something I chose to do and want to stick to.

It’s simple really: for one month, I would play one free-to-play MMO for a maximum of 10 hours weekly and spend absolutely nothing on video games by completing single-player PC games I’ve yet to finish. There are primarily two reasons for doing this: the first is to gradually get used to not playing MMOs so that MMORPGs feel new and vibrant again, while the second is to save money as I’m dreadfully close to running on empty.

This started sometime last week when I began playing LOTRO again on the Landroval server and made my final purchase for a month: Brink for the PC.

Here’s what happened since then:

Instead of buying games, I bought other stuff. I purchased a Kindle version of Patrick Rothfuss’ The Name of the Wind, then grew so obsessed with reading it on my bed that I convinced myself that I HAD TO HAVE a tablet to read the Kindle book on. $360 later, I became a Samsung Galaxy Tab (which my parents shelled out for after I explained my case) owner.

I got a new job.

I forgot I had started a no-purchase order and tried to buy The Witcher 2, but checked with my bank and found out that I would go over my limit if I bought it online, and in dejected response I spent $55 on junk food and assorted goods (Tablet accessories, dinner at a restaurant by myself, and a massage at a spa) within the span of three hours after finding out I couldn’t buy the Witcher 2 with my e-credit card.

Any halfway sane person can see that there is something inherently askew right now with my self-control mechanisms. I realize it, but I am having difficulty maintaining the restraint necessary to keep myself from doing stupid things like the above, which not only cause me to spend on myself unnecessarily, but also cause my parents to accede to some half-baked whim on my end.

I think my MMO burnout is a sign of something worse: that I have gotten so burnt out with doing things normally that I’m obsessing over the rush I get from spending money and watching a download meter rise on Steam. It’s not the game that I want; rather, it’s the purchase behind a game or other object that gives me pleasure, and that’s a scary thought.

Times like these, I either need a counselor or a support group, and I’m not sure I can afford either at this rate.