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When CCP was young and eve only had 3k peak at any given time CCP was a different oompany. It was their 'indy' feel and their eagerness to produce an internet spaceship game that really allowed me to connect with what they were doing.
Then came the wave of *** clones to the market. CCP maintained their position of free expansions and continued to deliver a quality game that was distinctly different.
It was when they started on the World of Darkness and Dust projects that I really began to see negative changes in Eve. Wave after wave of changes to the game have done nothing but alienate me from the game in a way I never thought would happen.
Some of the first signs that things were wrong came with the lack of support to their industrial side. CCP's solution to the mining "problem" was Planateary interation. I think a game needs to have the three spheres to fubnction as a virtual world: combat, crafting and diplomacy. If you look at all the time and energy CCP has spent on Eve in the last several years I see very little in evolution of these systems.
I feel that most of the features that were implemented in the game, with the exception of a oouple, missed the mark on their entertainment value, and therefore were wasted on me.
I am now on a break from Eve, and have been since the PDF was leaked around the time of Incarna. I was not appalled by a business' attempt to understand their customers. What I am apalled by is the how much they missed the mark.
According to CCPs internal memo players choose to play Eve because they are seeking an identity. Their entire virtual item store is indicative of that. We are paying for services that some how make us more complete. (lol)
Now even though I've been on my break I still read the patch notes and I've seen nothing new added for the last few months. All I've seen are NERFS and quite a few of them. Whether they are needed to balance the game world or not, their timing is terrible.
The new forums are terrible.
Incarana beyond terrible and the idea that CQ will not an optional item in the future --- terrible.
The fact that miners haven't seen any changes since they added the Ore industrials - terrible.
I don't mean to dwell on specific changes or lack thereof to drive my point home. My main point is this: Most of the changes to Eve in the last 3-4 years have been for CCP, not the customer. I'm not telling you to not play eve. What I am saying is they have been riding on something other than organic growth and innovation which is lead me to the conclusion that CCP's golden age is over.
They are now another EA or SOE and their game isn't all that good anymore.
My predictions for the future is they will continue down the road of this madness embracing every social cliche there is until the spaceship part of the video game is only a small part of their gimmick. Many (the same ones who buy any product out there) will eat it up as innovation. I myself, will be still stewing over the comment that I wanted anything other than internet spaceships and some eye candy.