Freitag, 9. April 2010

Zargyl's Tyrannis

Soon Tyrannis will be upon us and I have to admit that I am quite looking forward to it as the possibilities it might start giving us are endless. In my mind I already see huge cloud cities harvesting gas from those gargantuan gas planets, dark steel bunkers huddled on precarious precipices near ocean-like magma fields on those lava planets, floating cities slowly caressing the endless waves of ocean planets and so on. All full with people looking upwards to the sky either fearful or thankful of their capsuleer masters who visit orbital command centers that overlook their planetary empires.

The last part could probably be done in conjunction with Incarna and much of that “vision” stems from the epic command-center-view from the Dust 514 preview. So I do hope it will be possible for capsuleers to visit those command centers and direct their planetary empires from there as well as interact with Dust mercenaries (or at least be able to view their planetary facilities from orbit).

The Tyrannis teaser trailer hints that we will be able to choose to be tyrants or benevolent leaders. Tyrants are mostly despots ruling over people and benevolent leaders are mostly benevolent to people (and not necessarily recources). It is not so long till Tyrannis now and I still miss any information about people. All we have yet are some sketches regarding resource gathering. So I would like to present a possibility for people to become a “rescource”:


What about those? Our ships do have them, from just a few for Frigates to probably thousands for capital ships. We do have some types of people already in the game, but not yet the kind of people that could come from planetary academies. Most tyrants will probably only try to exploit people to get the highest output in materials extracted from planets. In the teaser trailer we do indeed see the Tyrants flying towards planets in mostly industrial and cargo ships.  The same trailer those shows the benevolent leaders moving towards their planets in combat ships! So perhaps they hope to fill their “crew quarters” (which could be similar to the drone bay in-game) with people happy about their rule and hungering to see the stars abroad ships piloted by capsuleers?
The nicer the capsuleer is with the planet the higher the morale of those crew members will likely be. Whereas those capsuleers more into their darker selves will probably try to use slave crews (which would need enforcers as well).
Similar to leadership a more motivated crew might also impart some bonuses to ship handling as well (whereas a rebelling crew might lower the same stats).

Aside from this idea I also do hope my dreams of seeing huge cloud cities, picturesque high-tech facilities on pristine worlds and floating wonders on ocean worlds might get realized! Some specialized ships might also be cool though. They could be something from landing craft (to see the surface facilities scrolling by) to huge capital-ship monsters for rescource gathering (like the World Devastators - capital-scale exhumers for planets integrated with industrial facilities - from StarWars).

In closing I don’t think that this vision of mine depicted in the beginning will be fully realized at first, but as it is similar (at least I hope so) to view expressed in Torfi’s interview I hope that we will sometime be able to see that. The info to date doesn’t show much in that regard, but I guess it can’t harm if one does hope (and of course the hidden agenda of this is indeed to perhaps poke readers in this direction).

For more posts on Tyrannis don't forget to look at all the other cool Tyrannis posts that are part of CrazyKinux's Tyrannis contest.

Donnerstag, 8. April 2010

Semi-interactive world events using Pashanai as an example

When we got the breaking new about events happening in Pashanai (Genesis Region) I was quite excited as something seemed to be happening. And I am sure I wasn’t the only one (e.g. Casiella also tweeted about the events). I couldn’t resist traveling there to see the damaged station for myself (even though again EVE Travel seems to have gotten there first and already published a nice report about the sight). I can’t help myself (even though I am Minmatar), the Amarr certainly know how to build impressive structures.

It saddened me to see the destruction wrought (allegedly by Minmatar terrorists no less). Guys killing civilians living there, as well as innocent slaves held captive there, can’t be the way to free those of us still enslaved to the Amarr! Whatever their color extremists are always bad for any culture or religion (and sadly Matar extremists are no different it seems).

Anyway back to the topic: I really like the freedom to visit a place in the news and see for myself the change wrought (in this case sadly for the worse).

OOC: EVE has quite a rich back-story which makes for quite a colorful stage setting for players to interact with each other. There is a gulf though between the action and player interaction taking place in the front and the stage being displayed behind them. But in more and more cases this gulf is getting bridged. Planets are one great example for that: They make for quite an incredible stage (especially since Dominion), but interaction is limited. With Tyrannis at least a part of this is going to change and we are going to do more than just being able to warp to planets.
With other “stage elements” the gulf is even bigger, as you can’t even “warp” to storyline events. The same holds true for the most pivotal characters of the back-story. An idea to bridge the gap to them might be in making them interact-able via epic-mission arks (as proposed in an older blog post of mine).
For world events like the Pashanai disaster the gap is already closing a bit insofar as we do see the events having an impact in the game world (at least in regards to the station model). This does still feel like a bit of a stage setting you can’t really interact with. Truly interactive (like GM-driven) events are too work-intensive, but making such world events “semi-interactive” would be cool!

Ways to do that (with Pashanai as an example could be):
  • Enabling us capsuleers to help in the evacuation of residents (by setting up NPC courier contracts with “residents” in them for example).
  • Enabling capsuleers to help injured people there (as above but also with e.g. Sister of EVE contracts or buy orders to bring in medical supplies).
  • Setting up event-based agents in space. This could be new reporters asking players to dock at the station and report back. This could be someone from the Theology Council asking the players to help investigate the event.
Especially the last one could even be a small epic-ark kind of story. The Theology council could ask for an eye-witness - who was seen exiting the station shortly before the explosion - to be found in a nearby system at a mission-site. This could be an unscrupulous merc paid by shady underworld crime lord. This then could lead to the site of the terror organization and to the player perhaps foiling another such attempt by intercepting a courier run with new explosives. We might even get some new hint when doing it (like hearing a servant tell how the Empress got a strange look and mumbling something in an obscure tongue before calling off the scheduled meeting at Panshanai).

Thus the damaged station wouldn’t be “just” a stage element but would provide a point of interaction between players and the story (thus heightening the “immersion” of the players in this dark game-universe).
What do you think? What would your ideas be for possible “interaction points”?

Sonntag, 4. April 2010

Rally time

I have organized my first corp event (that is not "just" a mining event like my Lonely Roids ops before)! I set it up as a peaceful rally to celebrate my first year of membership in the Black Thorne Corporation.
I sponsored, organized and commented on this birthday rally, that was actually more than "just" one race, it consisted of a few smaller races. The ideas for two of those races were actually not mine but the idea of Julius Rigel, who organizes similar ones EVE-wide.

The first competition was the Boomerang. The boomerang was to practice manual sub-warp flying and involved burning towards a turning “line”, turning sharply after it and racing back towards the start/finish line. It was really fun commenting the flight!

The second competition involved warp-speed flying in a triangle. A triangle of three systems had to be traversed three times, with the start/finish being one of the stargates. It was fun to comment on the flights of the pilots, even though I sadly didn’t see all the course. We had one participant doing a side-trip, but even with that it was a close one.

Stan's Atron
Inqy's Crusader


The third part of the competition involved a bit knowledge of the political landscape surrounding us as well as the current corp activities. 7 Questions had to be answered. Among the questions (shortened versions of the) were:

Old President of the Gallente Federation: Souro Foiritan
The main of the founder of the BTC: Calsak
Amarr Empress: Jamyl Sarum I
The new president of the Gallente Federation: Jacus Roden
Name of the system of the last mining op

A second part of these questions was to find out a system name using certain letters from the answers of the above questions.

Stan already solved that one after I presented the i of Niballe.

Now that the system of the last part of the race had been found, the participants moved there and tried there luck with navigating the dangerous Slingshot (an S-shaped curve). For this part Anming was able to join us as well.

The whole race was a fun time on voice and all played along quite nicely and even got drawn into the action. So thank you Julius Rigel for the nice idea and Quintrala as well (without reading about your races I would never have thought about organizing my own).