Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Eve Online Agents: now with 25% less annoyance!

..and why this is actually a bad thing, in my opinion.

For the most part of my Eve 'career' (2008-2010 actually) I have been a highsec mission runner. I didn't like mining or courier stuff, nullsec was impenetrable (or so I thought) so I remained in highsec, gradually working my way up the agent standings ladder, shooting Serpentis and such. Every now and then, I'd run out of suitable missions, as my favorite Gallente agents provided me with missions against Caldari or Amarr which I rejected in order to keep a positive enough standing with them, or mining missions which I rejected on principle.

In some ways, this was a good thing. Not having a 'Damsel in distress' to run, forced me out of my comfort zone into trying new stuff such as exploration, trading, or joining corp mates for more difficult missions or complexes. New Eden is a harsh and often unpredictable, volatile universe; suck it up and try something else!

Now that agent divisions will be removed, however, pilots such as myself around 2009 can remain safely and snugly within their comfort zone, running the same missions over and over again without surprises. And reading from the earlier devblog on the subject, I gather that the payouts may even become slightly higher as well, so permanently cuddling up to that special agent of yours is looking more and more attractive. So - more predictability and less surprises, less incentive to change and evolve, and higher rewards.

In the short term, this may look like a positive development for the PVE pilots, but with one incentive to change your habits every now and then removed from the game, boredom might become a real issue, real fast.

Where I live in nullsec, there's no Sanctums, after the last nerf. We're still doing ok, but there's a real loss of income for some. And highsec just became a much more predictable, with stable sources of income guaranteed.. To be honest, I'm not sure what CCP is trying to accomplish here.

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