Eve’s Alternate History (meme)
I often look back on my two years in EVE and wonder what it would be like if I’d been around since the beginning. I’m pretty happy with the way the game plays now. No matter how many billions of complaints there are when CCP makes a major change to game mechanics (deep safes, electronic countermeasures, speed, ghost training), I am usually pretty happy with the end results. So, if the game is improving at a constant rate and I like it just fine now, would I have liked it enough to stick with it in the early days?
Since this will no doubt mean something slightly different to everyone, I’ve formulated my own meaning. To me it means, “What long standing feature should never have been a feature in the first place?”
Let’s be honest, changing any game mechanic that has been in place since the early days is going to cause a lot of angst among the older players (or even newer players who have, in their limited time, come to rely upon it). And, any game mechanic that has been left in place for this long is still there because removing it would leave a gaping hole that’s difficult to cover; happily, I assume that if it had never been included, the hole would have been filled in long ago by a new feature.
The feature that I think suffers most from it’s-there-so-we-need-it is local. This is the feature which we must not mention out loud (writing is okay though); for if we do, the whole of EVE will descend upon us and peck our eyes out for daring to wish for the removal of the tool which is everything to everyone. It is at once the savior of those who fear PvP, the guiding hand of those who love PvP, the power behind the AFK cloaker and the omniscient intelligence tool.
There is no group who does not love the local channel for some reason; simultaneously, there is no group who does not loathe local for the same reason. Whichever camp you are in — hate, love or both — you will probably agree that removing local without providing some form of system intelligence gathering is likely to be a bad thing. That’s why it’s so great to imagine we could go back in time to when CCP made the decision to include it and simply wipe that moment from history (you’ve been erased). By now, they would have been forced to add some mechanic for intelligence gathering with more utility than the directional scanner.
Since we’ve wiped local from existence (phew, that was hard work), there’s no reason to debate the merits of local or it’s removal — at least in this post.