Friday, February 23, 2007

Back In The Saddle

Around ten last night, after I was done doing something that required all of my attention and computer resources, I fired up EveMon just to check how close I was to having to change my skill training. I was still kind of busy so I really didn't give it my full attention, but after I saw I still had an hour to go and just as I was closing the program window, I noticed out of the corner of my eye that my ISK total didn't look right. I knew I had less than a million, but it seemed that EveMon was telling me that I had over ten mil. Since I knew that certain stats in EveMon, such as ISK, update less frequently than others, I assumed it just hadn't updated recently and didn't really think too much about it, once again focusing on other things. A little later on, though, I realized that even if that were true, ten million-something ISK still didn't sound right. Upon firing up Eve, I discovered the truth.

The first thing I did, of course, was check my wallet. A mouseover on the Neocom told me that yes, indeed, I had well over ten million. A check of recent transactions gave me the answer I was looking for: A fellow Eve player and reader of this blog (I don't know how this person feels about being ID'd so until I do, I'll err on the side of caution and keep them anonymous) made a wonderfully sweet and generous gesture and donated ten million ISK to the Myrmidon Fund.

Now, thanks to this totally unexpected, greatly appreciated, and perfectly timed surprise, I'm back to pretty much exactly where I was before I lost my first Thorax. I finished fitting the new ship last night, but got started a little late (Thursdays are always extra-busy for me) and so I didn't get a chance to take on any missions...that starts today.

Sometimes in this game it can be tough to balance risk with boredom. In other words, if I want to absolutely sure I'll be safe, I can take on lower level missions. Sure, they pay less, but what I've got fit on this ship will plow through them easily. On the other hand they also pay far less and therefore would require a much longer time overall to earn the same amount of ISK and probably be pretty boring. The alternative, of course, is to take some risks and go for the bigger rewards. In fact, a lot of this game seems built on fostering exactly that kind of in-game behavior: taking risks and going for the big prize. It makes a lot of sense...after all, how much does a reward really matter if you didn't have to work your tail off to get it? On the other hand, when you take risks sometimes you come out on the losing end. Now flying my twenty-first purchased ship, christened Blackheart XXI, that's one lesson I've learned very well.

I've decided that at some point soon, when there's a class or some other reason to do it, I want to take an excursion to Korsiki, where Eve University HQ is located. I've never been there but it seems that a lot of what goes on with E-Uni happens there. I did make one of these "field trips" out of Gallente space about two weeks ago to go check out Jita. At first, I kept hearing people constantly refer to it but I had no idea what it actually was....a corporation, a planet, and alliance...I had no clue for weeks until I asked and found it's a system in Caldari space where Eve has developed its very own black market. I can't really tell you exactly why, but for some reason I had to go and see what the big deal was, so I set off on a thirteen-jump route through Gallente and Caldari space to Jita.

When I got there, the first thing I noticed was that there were over five hundred pilots in local. I clicked to the channel to find what seemed more like an auction than a discussion. I quickly got the idea of what was going on there, so I docked somewhere and just watched the channel for a while, knowing I had nowhere near enough ISK to even think about participating in one of these deals. The fun part of this little field trip was when I decided it was time to get back to home space.

I undocked and headed for the Kisogo gate (this was before the last patch when it was still there) and experienced something new when I tried to jump: I had to wait my turn. Understandable, I suppose, given the amount of traffic that gate must see, but still unexpected and jarring the first time. Traffic continued to be slow for the next two systems in my route back to Gallente space, but once I'd gotten past that it was smooth sailing all the way home, as I wondered if my trip to Jita had really accomplished anything other than consuming an hour and a half of my time.

I almost made the trip to Korsiki to see the recent "Frigate Smashup" event, but unfortunately, as I'd feared, I couldn't make it to my computer that day for any length of time until it was almost over. I hope they do another one of these things sure sounded like a lot of fun on corp chat.

So, yes, I'm back in the saddle and ready to rock...and in just a little while, I'm gonna log into Eve and zap me some bad guys! :)

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