This weekend I made the decision to have INQ-E join a wormhole alliance and move into their C5. It was not an easy decision, but one that I ultimately think will benefit us in many ways.
First some back story, because that itself is fairly interesting.
Within the first week or so of moving into our C3, we had a few experienced enemy pilots find their way inside our WH. They scored some nice kills, and stayed around for a few days. Looking back it was horrible luck, as since that visit we have had very minimal enemy activity inside your WH, and today we would be much better prepared to counter them.
Of course, much like our first high-sec war when the Corp was founded, what was once an enemy becomes an ally in EVE. That group of early invaders are now the alliance we are joining, and the opportunity came about because while we died horribly, we at least tried to fight back rather than ragequit or failcascade, and were open to communicating with our enemies rather than throwing a pity party. Its things like this that always make me laugh when the uninformed talk about the EVE community and how horrible it is. It’s only horrible if you deserve it.
As expected, many in my Corp were surprised by the announcement, and confused how things would work in our new home. In our C3 we divided things up evenly based on a minimal participation requirement, and all WH profits (Sleepers, PI, mining, production) went into one big pool. In the C5 you get paid if you show up for something, which worried those with lower SP or those without extensive combat training.
The other factor I struggled with was one of Corp identity. We put in a lot of time and effort making the C3 our home, and we just recently really hit our stride and got into a groove with the space. We had our PI going, we were producing stuff, and we just recently started converting gas into products. We were (slowly) expanding our possibilities in terms of PvP as well, and overall activity was very high. “If it’s not broken, don’t fix it” certainly crossed my mind, as did the general change of going from being fully in charge of our destiny to being one part of something greater.
And while change is scary, EVE is also very much a game where if you get too comfortable, and things become too routine, you slowly lose interest and can fade away, and it’s my job as CEO to ensure that does not happen. Much like leaving Empire and moving into the C3, it was more a matter of “screw it, here we go” rather than of finally being really ready. In EVE, if you are 100% ready, you are probably doing it too late.
One of the major pros of moving is the ISK generation itself; simply put, the ISK made in a C5 dwarfs a C3. What we made in a month the C5 makes in a few days. I’ll comment more on this at a later time, but I have little doubt that ISK will soon be a non-issue for many of us (or rather, it will allow us to get blown up in shinier ships more often, which is just as good).
The other major factor in moving is for the PvP. PvP in EVE is, IMO, the hardest PvP of any MMO. While the PvP in Darkfall is more twitch, and allows for more heroic individual feats, the amount of information you have to process in a very short amount of time in EVE is staggering. Learning by trial and error is very costly, and can often result in few lessons learned. There is a reason quality FCs are so highly valued in EVE, and it’s a very good one.
By joining this alliance, we will fly in Ops with some great FCs, and learn wormhole PvP at an accelerated rate. Combine this with the ISK factor, and each pilot in the Corp should progress at a rate far beyond anything we could have done in our C3 alone.
The final factor is one of numbers. Everyone in the alliance lives out of one C5, which means there will always be people online doing something, and the alliance is very open in terms of accepting people into fleets. This is another case of “obvious MMO design” that most games get horribly wrong; there is no hard-coded penalty to inviting others in EVE, which allows vets and newer players to fly together and fill out the various roles of a fleet. Much like the whole community thing, the above is why I laugh at the uninformed complaining about ‘never catching up to vets’ in EVE. More than a few of my pilots have less than 5m SP, and yet they will be full contributing members of a C5 WH alliance, doing ‘end-game’ PvE content and PvP’ing alongside pilots with 100m+ SP, blowing up billions of ISK.
Certainly more to come as things roll out.