How would you feel if you saw $5,000 worth of in-game assets blown to smithereens? That was what happened to one EVE Online pilot, marking one of the most expensive kills in the sandbox title’s recent history. That would, effectively, be the end of the story, but there are a number of interesting details surrounding this event that have been shared. In an illuminating interview with ganking victim Lactose Intolerant and one of the players who took part in the kill, we hear about the circumstances leading up to the event and the effects after the fact.
Lactose is an industrial player with 16 years of experience, with 120 different research jobs running across three factories at the height of his output. This resulted in a treasure trove of maxed-out blueprints — the items needed for anyone to build anything in EVE — for widely used ships like capital-class carriers and dreadnoughts. 800 of these blueprints were part of the haul that got spaced, along with two blueprints that were so rare that they aren’t even in-game anymore. The estimated loss clocks in at around 500 billion ISK, or around $5,000 in real money terms.
What makes this story strange is that Lactose was apparently flying extremely unsafe; he was reportedly flying an Orca industrial ship through a particularly dangerous region of space with fittings that were supposedly ill-suited to the task, though that part of the story is disputed. What’s more, Lactose is apparently notorious for such behavior according to the anonymous member of the group that ganked him; he had been caught by this particular guild two other times performing the same risky stunts.
According to Lactose, the loss of the blueprints isn’t a particularly major concern considering he was off to Jita to sell them anyway and distribute the wealth to his corp. However, the widespread ridicule that he’s receiving as a result of his perceived bad habits have stung him more, as he plays primarily for the social aspects. “I now find myself viewed as an undesirable recruitment prospect by short sighted recruiters who only look at my recent losses and not any of my past achievements,” said Lactose in the interview. “I want to continue playing and not give my attacker the satisfaction of running me off. It’s just that the backlash I’ve been getting is hard to take and I hope it subsides soon.”