It's been another busy year for sci-fi MMO EVE Online, and an absolute roller coaster ride for both players and developer CCP Games. On the development side, we've had two major expansions with Citadel and Ascension and a significant business model change with the introduction of a free-to-play account option. Fan events EVE Fanfest 2016 and EVE Vegas 2016 brought us some fantastic insights into the future development, including a peek at some amazing work on future PvE gameplay and an all-new EVE FPS codenamed Project Nova.
Proving once again that the players in EVE are the most engaging content, this year brought us the political twists and turns of the now-infamous World War Bee, which became the largest PvP war ever to happen in an online game. We also delved into some absolutely crazy sandbox stories, including one player using $28,000 worth of skill injectors to create a max skill character as a publicity stunt, and the controversial banning of the gambling kingpins behind World War Bee.
In this edition of EVE Evolved, I look back over all the biggest EVE stories of the year, from the political shenanigans of World War Bee to the surprise free-to-play option and how expansions have changed the face of the game this year.
Last month we brought you several war reports from the massive EVE Online conflict that's come to be known as World War Bee. After years of being the game's largest and most dominant military power, EVE coalition The Imperium found itself outnumbered and under attack by a loose band of alliances named the Moneybadger Coalition. The war began to attract media interest at the end of March when it became clear that it was likely the largest PvP conflict in gaming history and that the war was being bankrolled by a super-wealthy player with a grudge.
The first few weeks of the war were a whirlwind of activity, with fleets of thousands of players clashing in the M-OEE8 and UQ9-3C systems and players returning to EVE in their thousands to take part. Things slowly began to die down as The Imperium abandoned its nullsec territories, retreated to the low-security system of Saranen, and began deliberately avoiding fights in an effort to starve the enemy of entertainment. Things didn't exactly go to plan, however, as the now-shattered Imperium lost thousands of pilots and more recently all of its nullsec territory. The war has now transmuted into a game of pure strategic warfare as both sides attempt to deal as much ISK damage to each other as possible with the lowest cost.
Read on for a short update on World War Bee, which alliances are losing or gaining the most members, and how the release of citadels has affected the war.
Recently we've been following the story of the biggest war in gaming history kicking off inside EVE Online and its far-reaching consequences for the EVE universe. The conflict that has come to be known as World War Bee has seen EVE's largest and most dominant military power (known as CFC or The Imperium) face off against a huge coalition of alliances calling itself the Moneybadger Coalition. The story so far reads like something out of a sci-fi novel, except that it's playing out right now inside EVE Online, so if you've missed it, then I recommend going back and reading our coverage of the war from the beginning.
In our last report, the Imperium was up against a wall and unable to match the fleet sizes fielded by MBC. The group walled itself up inside the uncapturable lowsec system of Saranen and switched to guerilla strategies, employing interceptor and stealth bomber fleets. Since then it's lost billions of ISK in strategic assets, it's given up dozens of star systems and stations, and it's been shedding members by the thousands. The Russians have unexpectedly entered the war, director level spies have been discovered, and Goonswarm's home fortress in Deklein is under assault. Now The Imperium itself looks as if it may be shattering, and its only hope may be to consolidate its power into one massive super-alliance.
MOP's Brendan's terrific ongoing coverage of World War Bee -- the great war that wages on inside perennially combative MMORPG sandbox EVE Online -- made note of the fact that EVE's statisticians are tracking spikes in player activity and concurrency, no doubt a result of that very same war. Some people want to watch the bad guys go down, but plenty of others want to watch the world burn, no doubt.
But has the war likewise roped you in? Let's put it to a poll in this week's Leaderboard!
Did you resub to EVE for World War Bee?
I was already subbed. (9%, 199 Votes)
I am a former player who resubbed to EVE for World War Bee. (4%, 98 Votes)
I am a new player who subbed to EVE for World War Bee. (1%, 17 Votes)
I subbed or resubbed to EVE recently, but not for World War Bee. (2%, 50 Votes)
I used to play EVE but have not recently resubbed. (31%, 703 Votes)
For the past week we've been closely following the events of a monumental war that has kicked off in sci-fi MMO EVE Online. The conflict that has come to be known as "World War Bee" has recently exploded into the largest PvP war in gaming history, with thousands of players taking sides and forming massive fleets. The war began with the game's largest military power (known as CFC or The Imperium) invading low-security space to capture moons from the fractured alliances that lived there. In an unexpected move, those alliances put their differences aside and joined forces to repel the Imperium forces, then took the fight to the coalition's home.
The war took a quick and interesting turn following this when Imperium alliance Circle of Two severed all ties with its masters and joined the attacking Moneybadger Coalition, bringing with it military secrets such as the locations of supercapital shipyards. The politics and fleet movements in World War Bee have proceeded at a rapid pace ever since, with both sides attempting to spin the narrative of the war in their favour and adapting their strategies to counter the other. Yet the most impressive news to come out of the war is undoubtedly the spike in player activity and new player signups over the past few days, as each day breaks new PvP records and thousands of players return to kick some serious space ass.
Read on for an update on the EVE Online war, from the shifting strategies of the attacking coalitions to the effect on player activity and the distinct narrative of good versus evil that's playing out in-game.
Throughout the almost nine years I've been covering EVE Online in the gaming media, I've been continually amazed at the sheer scale and impact of events that happen in the sandbox. The fact that everything happens in one massive shardless universe lends events in EVE a kind of tangibility that is rarely felt in an MMO, with the effects of huge battles and record-breaking heists rippling throughout the game world and potentially affecting every player. Right now the whole New Eden cluster is ablaze with talk of the largest war ever to kick off in EVE Online or indeed gaming in general, a war that has come to be known as World War Bee.
We've been covering this ongoing war between EVE's largest military coalition (called CFC or The Imperium) and its collective enemies (known as The Allies or the Moneybadger Coalition), and so far it's had some pretty epic twists and fights. But what actually caused World War Bee, what are the events that led to the Moneybadger Coalition coming together, and how does The Imperium plan to fight this war in the long term? With the wider gaming world peering on as EVE alliances smash huge fleets together in deep space over ideals and past grudges, now is a good opportunity to explore those questions.
In this edition of EVE Evolved, I delve into the events that many in the EVE community believe are responsible for World War Bee and get an update on its progress and The Imperium's plans.
If you've been following the EVE Online news recently, you'll have heard about the colossal war that has kicked off between the game's largest military coalition (known as CFC or The Imperium) and a horde of its enemies collectively known as The Allies or Moneybadger Coalition. It's estimated that over 60,000 pilots are embroiled in the war, and that number is growing by the day as both sides continue to swell their ranks. In the first article on this war, I looked at some of the events that led up to the conflict and details of the opening salvo in what has become the largest PvP war in gaming history.
The first few days of the recent war effort have seen some huge fights and political twists, with Moneybadger Coalition initially destroying the infrastructure hub in M-OEE8 and major military alliance Circle of Two severing ties with The Imperium. Yesterday saw further fighting with major clashes over the Imperium station in the UQ9-3C system and The Imperium announcing a new set of strategies in hopes of countering the superior size of the enemy fleets.
Read on for an update on the second major day of fighting from what has now come to be known as World War Bee.
Sci-fi MMO EVE Online has had no shortage of huge battles in its lifetime, from the world-record-breaking 3,110 player battle in 2010 to the Battle of Asakai in 2013 and the now-famous Bloodbath of B-R5RB in 2014, in which the equivalent of $310,000 USD of ships went up in smoke. There's something about the stories of colossal battles, political dealings, underhanded scams and record-breaking heists in EVE Online that manages to grab the attention of the gaming world. People look on with a mixture of awe and schadenfreude as players in the world's biggest sandbox MMO roll the dice and someone loses big-time.
New Eden has actually been pretty quiet for the past two years, but things began heating up recently when the largest military coalition (known as CFC or The Imperium) decided to invade low-security space. The CFC has largely been considered undefeatable due to the sheer number of ships it can bring to a fight, so when the group decided to capture valuable moons held by lowsec alliances, everyone expected only one outcome. What actually happened was a series of escalating events like something out of a really great sci-fi novel, and it's led to the largest PvP war in gaming history, with over 60,000 players around the world choosing sides.
Read on for a brief overview of how the war started and a video update on how gaming's largest war has gone so far.
Have you noticed that there seem to be fewer announcements of EVE Online's big space battles recently? The explanation is quite simple: There haven't been many of late. With the alliance known as The Imperium in control of a huge sector of space, real territory conflict has stagnated for a couple of years, since no other single alliance was strong enough to challenge the group in charge. But that's changed, with a number of elements making it newly possible for a newer group known as the Moneybadger Coalition to push back against the Imperium, carve up its territory, and break up the ruling body.
So what caused it? Essentially, the Imperium has grown more unstable and lost key members while also cutting itself off from some of the intelligence sources that would have warned of these attacks. CCP Games has also changed how Dominion mechanics work, allowing for guerilla-style fights that can have smaller ships win against capital opponents. The result has been a series of wins for the Moneybadger Coalition and a concentrated fallback by the Imperium, breaking up the state of power in the galaxy. With two years of peace to bolster the armaments of all participants, this could easily be the next big one.