BB 51 – Avoidance

BB 51 – EVE Online can be a game of heart-pounding, palm-sweating, adrenaline-fuelled ecstasy or agony. Sometimes over the years those reactions dim and what was once a panic inducing situation becomes commonplace routine. For some, the shakes never go away. From Druur Monakh (Twitter: @DruurMonakh) we get the topic of this banter: what was your most nail-biting experience in EVE Online so far?

I go out of my way to avoid nail-biting situations in EVE. It would be easiest to label it as being risk-adverse and leave it at that.

The truth is a little more awkward. I get the PVP shakes rather badly. I don’t know how bad it is in comparison to others, but it is enough that my voice stutters, I struggle to type, and my mouse movement is so inaccurate that it can be next to impossible to perform simple tasks in game.

It doesn’t matter how prepared and calm I am, or how rationally I am thinking – my body ignores me.

While the impact is diminished with familiarisation and regular exposure, it is not something I am able to manage or mitigate. It is not even consistent, so I can’t make assumptions about the timing or severity.

I went on a long roam a while back with 50 odd random pilots from a mailing list. While in station waiting for the form up I was shaking like I had a very animated case of Hyperthermia. We undocked, formed a conga line and after a long delay, headed off. A dozen jumps in and the shakes had died off. There were a number of combat situations which I took in my stride. Then – 30 jumps in, with nothing being reported by the scouts, the route set and easily followed, and everything in a routine, the shakes returned with vengeance. I don’t know why – there was no apparent reason for it. It was a struggle to align and warp.

It is too physically uncomfortable, tiring, and frankly embarrassing.  It ruins the experience I get from the game.

At this point, particularly if you have never followed my blog, you might be questioning why I play EVE and assume I never undock.  Yes I live in Empire as you might expect – but I have also spent plenty of time in Null Sec, lived in and around Low Sec, and am a Wormhole Day tripper.  I just try to avoid the nail biting situations.  I have alts watching gates, bookmarks all over the systems I am active in, cloaks on almost every hull, and bolt holes I can align to.  If I have one of those oh shit moments, it will generally mean that I have failed somewhere.

Instead my memorable moments are contrary to this Blog Banter.  For instance back when I lived out of a POS in Low-Sec there was a pirate who regularly patrolled through the system. I watched him time and time again try to catch me outside of the POS shields, using friends or Alts, pre-bookmarking anomalies, camping the system. This went on for a couple of weeks, but he never managed to get close.  After a while I realised that he stopped hunting for me. If he came through the system and I was the only one there, he would just move on. I wasn’t worth the time and effort to chase.

That’s the sort of memory I strive for – minimising danger through planning, preparation and patience. I’ll undoubtedly get caught at times – outsmarted or just through bad luck.  But those moments will tend to be over and done with so quickly that the shakes won’t alter the outcome anyway.

Yep – EVE is a sandpit, and people do really play this game for all sorts of different reasons.


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4 thoughts on “BB 51 – Avoidance

  1. Man… you are The Shining Example, the Poster Child for The True Sandbox. EVE “IS” a PvP game… your PvP just takes place in a higher realm… that of OUTWITTING the knuckledragging, bloodcrazed, War Mongers who feel in a Sandbox they should be ALLOWED to attack anyone anywhere anytime for anyreason… including the time honored, “They were there.” … and hell, I don’t even disagree with em..

    I just love that you win out against them with your, as River Tam so aptly told Serenity’s Public Relations Officer and Thug, Jayne… “I can kill you with my brain…”

    I too have issues with PvP overload, which is whjat I personally feel is the root of the shakes, for me it is not so much a physical reaction (though I have had times when it waw very physical and near debilitating) but for me… I get brainlocked. I get so narrow focused it’s like being able to see ONLY the muzzle of the gun and everything else is lost like I have blinders on.

    I just can’t THINK. The number of things you need to clearly recognize, categorize then formulate a response to and then ACT out that response all while gathering a stream of info ready to change your response in a picosecond based on any changes just swamps me… Shaking hands is bad granted, been there… but when your hands are not shaking and you just have no idea what to DO with the mouse & keys… while you die… that is really embarrassing.

    • I know that narrowing of focus that you are talking about. I can’t tell you the number of times I forgot to release drones, or left them behind. For the most part however I can rationalise and follow a mental checklist, and be effective. (A good FC also helps hugely in that regard.) It really is the physical reaction I can’t control. It has been interesting reading about how differently people react to the EVE Shakes. The “Oh, your just risk adverse” tag is a huge simplification.

  2. evehermit
    I know exactly how you feel. IRL I avoid confrontation at all costs and if you knew my former job that took a lot of effort. My body is the same way…it doesn’t do anything right when confronted with destruction. I get destroyed and have no clue what I did to try to avoid it. I too just started exploration and love it. Thanks for your honesty.

  3. I’m entirely in your camp. The Artificial Intelligence (inhospitable players) in EVE is superb and defeating it by NOT dying is masterly play. I aspire to your level, and I encourage CCP to acknowledge the importance of this style of play.

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