I ran 27 PVE battles in World of Warships – half to get used to the game, then one each time I started to use a new hull to get a feel for it before I went up against other players.
I expect that is probably more than the average person does. It relates to the “not embarrassing myself too much” goal I mentioned the other day.
That uncomfortable need to prepare myself has now waned, and I don’t expect I will run a PVE battle again.
The PVE Battles themselves tend to be relatively easy. The main core of NPCs would generally run through the middle while a couple small groups would move down either flank. Most players rushed in concentrating on the core group, resulting in a close quarters blood bath with some friendly fire, but ultimately overwhelm it with superior numbers. The flanking ships would then move in and be more easily dispatched. The games were then over.
Generally the NPC AI was easily beat – I think mainly as it operated with less self preservation than a player would. I will say that I found the NPC Destroyers at my level of experience / tier to be more dangerous than player controlled Destroyers. While scouting the flanks I found they would appear at full speed 6km away, zigging and zagging to minimise the damage you could throw against them. Mere seconds later they would release an accurate close range torpedo spread against you, followed up by a second, also accurate spread. It didn’t seem to matter how you twisted and turned, or what acrobatics you managed to perform, you’d find yourself the first casualty of the game, sinking with little opportunity to fire off your own ordinance.
I know it sounds very arbitrary, but I wonder if a PVE match making system might be an interesting addition to the new player experience in EVE? Start people out in pre-fit loan ships if required – but get them exposed to the idea of flying in a fleet and working together.