You’ve found my Eve Online Review – Day 13! Welcome!
If at any time you want to check out Eve for yourself, visit www.eveonline.com and check out their free 14 day trial for yourself.
For those of you that stopped in quite a few days ago to check out day 13 I apologize. Work became busy and I missed a day or three (whoops! I actually ended up paying for my first month a few days ago, so I’ll continue to blog here about what I get up to from time to time so people can get an idea of what the game is like).
Thankfully I made some notes and a BUNCH of screenshots for today’s post – so here goes.
Eve Star Maps – Useful, Pretty and Complex!
After having to fly through an unsafe warp gate to collect a 4.5 million isk skill book, I’ve become much more interested in the inner workings of Eve’s star maps. They can display a huge amount of useful data to pilots, ranging from the location of “deadspace pockets” to “traffic advisories” which is a queue of pilots at warp gates in trade hubs and other busy systems.
By clicking into the star map screen you’re first greeted with a large overview of the space and star systems surrounding your ship. You’re also given tags which describe the region of space you’re in, and if you hover over stars you’re shown a network of jump lanes which connect to each other.
Basically it gives you a simple view of where you are in relation to the rest of the large (and getting larger) Eve galaxy, but from what I’ve found, the map isn’t for doing your navigating from star to star, its more useful for information and intelligence gathering.
The act of doing your daily navigation and getting around the galaxy is done with smart context sensitive menus elsewhere in the game. For example when you accept a mission that requires you to jump 3 star systems, you set a destination from IN the mission screen, which means you don’t have to hunt around a massive galaxy hunting for a particular star.
The real value in Eve online’s star map comes from the large amounts of data it can display to you.
Here’s my first screen which shows how many pilots have died in space over the last 24 hours:
That big dark red blob is about 70 pilot deaths – and I don’t mean NPC deaths, but player vs player deaths either in militia battles in Empire space, corporation wars, or pirating activity outside of Empire.
If anyone wants to hazard a guess at the number of deaths represented just from this one corner of the Eve galaxy in one day, I’d love to hear it, but I’d probably take a wild stab at say, 500 deaths?
It just goes to show the world of Eve is heavily driven by player vs player combat (and it really stings when you die!), so if the idea of constantly being on your guard in a dangerous universe doesn’t appeal to you, Eve really isn’t your thing.
Having said that you CAN be a total carebear and stay out of corporations that are at war, and just mine in empire space, manufacture weapons and arms, and support the war in your own way. I prefer the being on your guard part!
Here’s a photo of a big freighter for you carebear/trading/mining/manufacturing lot who like all that kinda stuff.
Thats the worst freighter you can buy in the game. I thought I’d show it in the station, docked, so you could get an idea how big it looks. I must admit I do like the idea of doing some mining and manufacturing, but just on the side to make me some extra cash, and maybe so I can manufacture some of my own specialist freighter popping weaponry
Here’s a shot of it in space.
And another one of me approaching a station with a full load of goods from a nearby star system (I’m hauling all my gear, as well as one of my small frigates around in this ship!).
But enough about freighters and carebear stuff, this post was actually supposed to be about star map features… whoops.
Pod Kill Star Map
This is the feature I used yesterday to determine whether it was safe to enter .4 space without being killed. You select an option on the star map, and the brighter and bigger the glow, the more pod kills that have occured there. Whats a pod kill you ask?
A pod is what you’re left with if and more like WHEN your ship is destroyed in Eve. Its like your personal escape craft/survival pod. So when your ship is destroyed, you pop out in this pod, and then depending on who killed you, you either warp away, or you’re targetted and subjected to ransom demands by a greedy pirate who needs to feed his family (or buy bigger guns).
If you’re pod killed two major things happen.
1. Your clone is activated at a nearby space station, and
2. You lose any implants which were plugged in at the time.
Implants can be super-dooper expensive, and a new 10 million skill point clone is also a massive chunk of change, so getting pod killed, especially later in the game can be a real day ruining event.
Here’s the star map which shows you how many pod kills have happened over the last 24 hours:
Excuse the quality on that screen, but it says something like 64 pod kills occurred in that star system over the last 24 hours. This is definately not a system you want to jump through with a freighter full of ore, or a tech 2 frigate loaded with high quality weaponry.
If all this sounds a bit scary, then good! I’m kidding… most of the time, especially when you start out, you tool around in space above .5, which means you’re safe. When you’re ready to venture into .4 space, you’ll likely have been in a corp for sometime, and be afforded a measure of protection because of that. If nothing else you’ll be cluey enough to stay away from a star system with 64 pod kills in it!
This is the waypoint map in Eve. As I said earlier, you generally don’t set waypoints via the map, but the map is essential for double, or TRIPLE checking that you’re not travelling through .4 sector space to get to your destination. In fact, when you get into Eve the default setting will stop you from inadvertantly autopiloting through .4 space, but it won’t stop you making it your destination.
Here’s a quick waypoint screen that shows me 2 jumps into an 8 jump route:
There’s also a security coloring that helps you work out which parts of the map are out of bounds, and which is safe, carebear coddling empire space. In fact if you were to take a screen zoomed allll the way out on the Eve galaxy map, Empire space would appear as a big green blob, and the surrounding space, differing shades of red (below .4 security) space. Oh heck I’ll take a screen shot of it for you — here it is.
Another interesting map is the Alliance map, which shows which Alliance (group of corporations) controls what part of space.
I had to angle the galaxy map a bit to fit it into a good screen shot (and to make it look really fancy of course):
There’s a ton of other really interesting and useful information you can get out of Eve-online’s maps, but you don’t want to scroll through another mile of screen shots.. You want to get in and see for yourself. Its seriously cool… and when was the last time you saw something pretty and impressive, which was also actually useful?
Check Eve Online out for yourself, as always they’re running a 14 day free trial (on which this review is based!).