I remember my first two weeks in Eve like they were yesterday. I remember my trusty Velator appearing on screen and immediately being overwhelmed by the overview and sidebar. There was so much to take in and it felt like I would never learn what ever module in the market did. Even such, I was still excited. The aspect of the game that really pulled me in was community. From player run corporations to Alliances. It was amazing that you could be rating in empire with a guy sitting thousands of miles away in front of his computer (or her!).
It wasn’t just the in-game things that pulled me in, but the out of game happenings. There were blogs, alliance tournaments, podcasts and even a TV show dedicated to this great game. This brings me to EveTV. They were out of money and CCP was unwilling to help them in any form that would keep it going at the time. I watched previous episodes and it immediately struck me as plain stupid that CCP wouldn’t keep something like this going. Something that really gave this game something that no other MMO offered. It’s cutting things like this that speak volumes about how much the company cares about the community outside of the game. Apparently the alliance tournament used to be hosted every 6 months but is now once a year. With PCU up and the possibility of plenty of new subscriptions in ’09, it makes me wonder if this will bite CCP in the ass. I can’t begin to ponder why they wouldn’t spend the relatively low amount of cash to fund specific events and programs outside of the game that really pull in new players and keep the veteran pilots interested. Per player investment for these types of programs must be relatively low.
Let’s face it, CCP NEEDS to make Eve standout from the pack. None of us are quitting our subscriptions because EveTV is gone or the tournament is only every year now, thats clear. But what will speak to CCP is stiffled growth. They have a massive investment in servers and programming. What pays off for them is when subscriptions go up and more people are paying for the experience they have created. Essentially more bang for their buck off their initial investment. Thats the great multiplier of programming.
Hopefully CCP realizes in the future that the CAN cater to new and old players. They need to keep in mind the entire experience they are creating, and not just the game itself. FanFest is a great start but I think they can do a bit better. Bringing back EveTv in some form for a bi-weekly show would also be a good start. Hopefully they agree.