There are as many ways to play Eve as there are... well, anything that has a lot of stuff. It isn't infinite, so you can't use "Stars in the sky" or "Grains of sand on the beach", suffice it to say there are a lot of ways to play this crazy ass game. With me so far?
For the vast majority of Rixx's career in New Eden he has served as a soldier. A weapon that others have used to further their own goals. This role suited him just fine, he was after all a young capsuleer learning his way around the universe. From a player perspective, I simply found myself in certain situations and made the most of them. My early career path wasn't as much choice as it was blind luck and simply following a path.
It worked. Both Rixx and I learned an incredible amount about this game, from the mechanics to the politics and much, much more. From being involved in Providence and the rise and fall of Corporations, Alliances and entire regions, we both found ourselves more often than not right smack dab in the middle of huge conflicts. It was in so many ways, a trial by fire. Even our side trips and deviations, our early failed attempts at starting a Merc Corporation, or joining Corporations that we shouldn't have in hindsight, showed us different flavors and taught us valuable lessons we carry with us even today.
Our history is well documented here on this blog and I won't bore you with more of the same. We learned a lot Rixx and I about this game by constantly being in the middle of the action. But that action was always someone else's action. And that is, after all, the role of the soldier.
But something has changed. I suspect it is the conflux of many things that happen to coincide at the same moment. For one thing, being the CEO of a new Corporation tends to change your outlook rather quickly. Even being a Director in a Corporation and leadership in a fledgling Alliance doesn't prepare you for that change. Add to that the environmental changes that have been taking place, removing yourself from the constant struggles of Sov Holding also changes your mental outlook. Being in Syndicate for the past two months has also contributed to this change, as has the approaching 40m skill point barrier. Not to mention the usual mix of real life and whatnots.
The simple fact is that Rixx isn't a soldier anymore. In fact he hasn't been one for awhile now. He is more the warrior now, fighting for his own Corporation and his own Corp m8s. For his own ideals, and not necessarily those of anyone else. It isn't as much a dedication to what is being handed down from above as to what is coming from within.
Rixx and I share much in common. And yet his experience is obviously quite removed from my own. As much as I would like to, it is impossible for me to jump into a spacecraft and fly thru space. Sad, I know. The point is that the evolution of character continues, life is about growth, change and expanding horizons. As a pilot Rixx is experiencing that growth just as much as a "real" person does. It has been a very interesting journey and one that I am looking forward to continuing as the days, months and years in Eve continue.
Where this all takes me and my avatar pilot remains to be seen. But it is a journey that I continue to be excited about every day.