Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Fanfest Breakdown and Some Dust Concerns

Well Fanfest is rapidly approaching, and judging by the #tweetfleet, it looks like most people have arrived already. I'm thoroughly jealous at this point, but very happy for all who are able to attend. I was looking through the Fanfest Event Schedule, and here are some of the things that caught my eye:
  • State of the Economy -- We're seeing a ton of inflation right now, and I'm not a big fan. I'm interested to see sources of the inflation (Incursions?) as well as CCP's plans to fix it (if there are any). Still wishing for those QENs to return.
  • Ship Balancing -- This should be a very influential segment with Ytterbium's recent dev blog. I'd love to see what CCP has in mind for this role rebalancing, as well as if they make any reference to Titan rebalancing as well.
  • Nullsec, FW, Starbases, Crime Watch, and Black Ops -- All cool topics, general interest in interesting things

And on the other side of the coin, there's plenty of things I have no interest in: Sound/Music, German/Russian Communities, Eve Uni, Virtual Goods, etc. No big deal, just not as high on my list.

The big thing that has drawn my attention is the huge focus on Dust 514 at Fanfest. I suppose its about time, given that the game is supposed to be rolled out by the end of the year, but I'm extremely leery. Now, I'm normally a pretty darn optimistic person, but I am very, very scared of Dust and its potential implications on Eve. I've been a console gamer. In fact, I've been a console gamer ever since  I picked up my Dad's Atari and Nintendo as a kid. Eve is my first and only MMO actually. I get console gamers to some extent.

What I'm getting at is that in all of my time playing console games, I've never hung onto a single game for more than a couple months. Recently, Call of Duty: Black Ops & MW2 have probably had the longest runs, being a few months, and Skyrim had a very intense 2 month run.  That's it. And that's the problem with console gamers. There is no commitment to a bigger end game like Eve players have. Playing first person shooters (FPS) is about firing up the system, shooting some baddies, and moving on. And Dust has to compete with all of the big names already out there. This seems like a world of trouble to me. We have a long-term commitment issue from players in a game that had a lot of its development resources cut in the year before it launched in a market already over-saturated with FPS games. Awesome.

The biggest question is how CCP intends to link the two games. If they are heavily co-dependent, this will be a crushing blow to Eve if/when the console players jump ship for the next great game. Think about a Nullsec where you can't get anything accomplished because there aren't enough Dust mercenaries to get the job done. Maybe CCP could press the reset button on the system and roll it back if it is extremely unsuccessful, but that seems really unlikely.

At the end of the day, I really hope CCP wows us with Dust and that they release it in continual expansions as they do with Eve to keep console players on board. The health of Eve as a game and CCP as a company both depend on it. I'd be more than happy to see CCP make me want to buy a PS3 to play Dust, but I'm just not sure that's the way its going to go right now. Another game of wait and see. I think its safe to say that everyone is intrigued to see what comes out of Fanfest. Enjoy it, my friends, and keep me posted.

1 comment:

  1. The developers recently blogged about inflation, cash influx into the economy, and how the two are (or in this case, aren't) related.

    Incursions are of course the popular scapegoat, but there just hasn't been any reliable data yet that can single them out as the cause of inflation, or really the cause of any economic harm at all.

    That's not to say new data and analysis won't change that, only that much of the current fear and hype surrounding incursions is unfounded, at least by the numbers released so far.