Just over a week ago, I posed the following to the EVE blogging community:
Kirith Kodachi recently discussed the idea of what a World of Tanks style quick-match element would bring to EVE Online. Would the opportunity for a quick combat interest you? How could it be implemented? Could it be done without having a negative impact on existing gameplay elements? Or does such a concept have no place in EVE?
Kirith Kodachi got the whole ball rolling by comparing the easy-access game-play of World of Tanks with the much higher maintenance PvP of EVE Online. He posited that EVE might benefit from some kind of quick-match system.
I was ecstatic that so many fellow bloggers took up the Blog Banter challenge and sank their teeth into the subject. It was a topic that interested me and I had naive dreams of a Tron-like mini-game for Incarna. I felt that it was an assailably brilliant idea. However, the collective wisdom of the Blogosphere has managed to shift my views and I am now more ambivalent about the concept.
It surprised me that the field of opinion that sprang from this Banter was so varied. Arydanika quickly weighed in with an alternative concept of keeping the PvP in the 'real' world, but in 'instances' supported by a gladiatorial industry centred around a low-sec revival. Harrigan Vonstudly, whilst initially opposed to the idea in principle, went on to suggest an 'Eveharmony' compatibility interface allowing pilots to find their perfect PvP match. Drackarn was also in opposition but warmed to the idea of building on Arydanika's gladiatorial theme and including features like gambling and a spectator interface. Rhavas further developed this concept by suggesting organised leagues and Alliance Tournament-like competitions. Ripard Teg came out in strong support of the Incarna-based virtual concept, going into detail about how player-built "combat consoles"' could be used in the forthcoming establishments.
The tide then turned as Ender Black led the charge with a strongly-argued case that "meaningless, inconsequential PvP" had no place in EVE. Gul'gotha's account of the impact Battlegrounds introduction had on World of Warcraft's open-world PvP added weight to this argument. Although these were the only two blogs that openly stood in direct opposition the concept of quick PvP, they make a case that cannot be ignored.
Other bloggers enjoyed playing with the idea, with many also expressing concerns and reservations. Noise offered his cautionary approval whilst expressing concerns that it may impact on existing aspects of EVE's PvP. Mike Azariah used his unique fiction style to paint a picture of meta-gaming behind the scenes of organised leagues. KuroMayuri decried the virtual concepts, fearing the mind-bending effects of getting hooked on a game within a game, but he favoured the lowsec-reviving gladiatorial arenas. Rixx Javix, who had already kicked the idea around in previous posts, argued against himself and remained unconvinced. PyroTech03 set out to prove that arenas would destroy EVE's uniqueness, only to almost convince himself otherwise.
Orakkus melded several ideas and proposed low-sec station-bound arenas with interactive internal environments. SuicidalPancake preferred to see existing combat mechanics developed to promote combat, identifying that casual PvP would appeal to some but also felt that it did not fit the universe. Mabrick discussed a standings-driven 'fight-club' guild with a code of honour. Toterra liked the idea but was concerned that implementation could be mishandled.
All-in-all, I would say this Blog Banter was a resounding success. I don't know about you, but it has left me with a hundred conflicting ideas that are all vying for favour in my brain. There is no right answer and that is the beauty of it. The cacophony of clashing opinions is a wonder to behold, so lets do it again.
Same Time Next Month?
I've contacted Crazy Kinux and obtained his old Blog Banter email list. A message has been sent to all those on it to determine if they would still be interested in being notified of future Blog Banters. However, if you haven't received one and would like advanced notice of the topic for discussion, contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org so I can add you to the list. I'll detail the process for those unfamiliar with it in a separate blogpost soon.
Coming Soon: Blog Banters Reborn, Now With Added Troll!