Eveotorial: The Elephant in the Room

A wave of insanity splashed onto the shores of the Eve Community last week, sparked by my fellow blogger and CSM member RipardTeg in his Bonus Room post.

I've been quiet on this up until now, although it did spark my humorous Jita post from a few days ago, because I've been busy starting an Alliance - but mostly because this thing smelled like a rat from day one. It was easy to see what was going to happen, what did happen, and how it would all play out. There wasn't a need to address the shenanigans more than they were already being addressed.

People have been banned. A victim's name has been bandied about and his (and his wife's) humiliation has been made public. This is, I believe, the greatest crime of all. And I strongly feel it is the elephant in the room. No one is talking about it.

I have much respect for Ripard, I am a daily reader and have been since his blog started. We sometimes speak outside of blogging, I believe I've helped him many times and I know he has helped me many times. But on this issue I feel urged to call a spade a spade.

Mr. Teg is an elected member of the CSM and as such has access to CCP beyond that of us mere mortals. If he felt strongly that someone's actions in (or out) of game warranted a ban, then he could have easily have brought such actions to the attention of CCP and demanded special action be taken. I'm not a member of the CSM and yet, over the years, I have personally brought such actions to the attention of CCP - thru Petitions, Twitter, and email.

The victim was humiliated twice, once by the scammer, and once again by a blogger who should know better. I think he already knows this, the cancellation of his series and recent back-pedaling on his site would seem to indicate some wisdom in hindsight. I hope so. But the damage has been done. There was a way to get the results that needed to be gotten, without making the entire incident public. A human being is on the other end of that conversation, a human being who was verbally assaulted and then exposed to the wider Eve community.

I wouldn't have known about this had it not been for Repard's post. I could only bring myself to listen to small pieces of the Bonus Room audio. Perhaps I have to much empathy for the people on the other end of that conversation, for both sides. I feel for them all, because they are all victims in one manner or another. I have zero tolerance for such activity. Had I known about it beforehand I would have written CCP immediately and demanded action be taken. But I wouldn't have written a blog post about it. Just as I have never written one before about other incidents.

You have given the aggressor a platform and humiliated his victim.

For someone building to a point about bad behavior in Eve, I believe you exhibited some very poor judgement. At the very least.

A Week of Atron PvP

Stay Frosty pilot Deltron Zi spent a week flying around in a Atron like a crazy person and filmed his adventures.

Enjoy. And come fly wit us! Do eet.

-ABA- Pilot Profiles: Skine DMZ

-ABA- Pilot Profiles is a new regular series in which I profile one of our Alliance players. There is much more to A Band Apart than myself and it is time to meet some of our pilots.

Skine Dmz has been with StaY Frosty since September 2013. He contacted me a few months ago with an idea about a possible WormHole Corporation. Which just happened to perfectly coincide with our plans for a new Alliance.

His Twitter handle is: @SKINE_DMZ

• Tell us a little about your background in Eve

I joined EVE a few years back, it was my first space MMO/game and after a few unsuccessful tries I was able to get into it. At first I thought it was slow and a little boring, but the more I realized how deep this game was the more I started to love it. I've always been a bit of a space geek IRL and as soon as I realized you could actually live inside a wormhole, this became my permanent goal.

• How did you first hear about SF, LH, MATH

After the first wormhole corp I joined unfortunately went their own ways after the hole was cleared out, I got a little stuck in the usual highsec game. Running missions and generally not really enjoying the game. I decided to take my (awesome) Drake, fly it to a random emptyish lowsec system with a station and try to survive there. I tried to get to know all the locals and just enjoy the dangerous life.

While hauling my stuff, doing random anomalies and living the solo lowsec life, I started to enjoy it a lot more, you actually get to know people, as opposed to a highsec system that is continuously full of people coming in and out.

In the middle of this journey, looking for relic and data sites to hack in lowsec I noticed a system that was full of Stay Frosties and decided to ask one of them what all this was about. He(I wish I remembered who) told me they were pirates. I remember not understanding why they weren't involved in Faction Warfare, and this is something I was looking into doing, so I asked him why? He told me quite simply "So we can shoot all sides yarr".

That's it I was interested, I did some research and found a recruitment thread and got in contact. Before I knew it I was in Stay Frosty, flying unrigged 1-3m frigates into explosions getting rid of my PVP nerves. ;-)

• What is it that you enjoy the most about your corp?

The relaxed atmosphere, countless times have I been told PVP is not possible without comms, and apart from NEOII I don't think I have had any other kills while being on comms, all of them have been coordinated via simple eve chat, you guys showed me it is certainly possible and there are others who feel the same, it's a great chilled out atmosphere.

I did not want to leave Stay Frosty at all although it was time for me to move on to my wormhole goals, but I found like minded pilots and Rixx made it all possible to do this without actually leaving, MATH. was born.

• What have you learned since joining?

A crazy amount, before this I was mostly in my (awesome) Drake, I didn't fly any frigates as soon as I got into a destroyer. I learned how to fit, fly and PVP. I am not simply clicking red boxes and playing the waiting game, you guys taught me how to really play and keep myself safe.

• Do you have any advice for players looking to start PvPing?

Get straight into it, use cheap frigates to learn basic mechanics, don't wait and just make the move to lowsec!

• What are your goals for yourself, or your corp?

To find more like minded pilots for MATH. I am aware the atmosphere I am trying to recreate in wormholes are not easily found, and probably for the right reason. But I don't mind being at a disadvantage, as long as we are having fun.

• Do you have a funny Eve story you could share?

I lost my (awesome) Drake! I didn't know what to do, I attempted to start up an EVE PA service and actually got in contact with Erotica 1, I requested he gave me 100m for the services (which I immediately bought a new Drake with) which he did. I never did any PA work for him, but he did gave me a lot of advice on how to actually make it work which was cool, ultimately I think he knew nothing was going to happen, 100m was nothing to him but he seemed fairly impressed with the efforts I would go through for this 100m which is most likely why he gave it to me. He offered me a spot in his corporation which I declined because I had other plans and did not want to stay in highsec.

• My favourite thing about Rixx?

Approachable while having the voice of a true mafia boss.
(EDITORS NOTE: A truly ruggedly handsome Mafia boss!)

A Band Apart - Final Logo


This thing has been driving me crazy all week. I've had very little time to dedicate to work on it and I've been pushing other things aside that I really shouldn't be pushing aside. But once something gets in your head, or my head, I have to see it all the way thru to the bitter end. Until something happens to break it thru to the other side.

I am really happy with the final result. Now this is an Alliance Logo I can be proud of.

It even works tiny! Click to see.

ABA evolution
Progress this week!

We have almost six months before we can use anything in-game, but until then, at least we have a mark that I can use on materials, wallpapers, etc.

Now back to work.

-ABA- Pilot Profiles: Este DeStirr

-ABA- Pilot Profiles is a new regular series in which I profile one of our Alliance players. There is much more to A Band Apart than myself and it is time to meet some of our pilots.

Este DeStirr joined Stay Frosty right before Christmas of last year and has been with us ever since. He is an extremely active pilot both in-game and out, especially over on Tweetfleet. A relatively new player, Este started playing Eve just last August. He is still learning his way as a PvPer but has been making tremendous progress.

His Twitter handle is: @este_destirr

• Tell us a little about your background in Eve

I started playing in August 2013 after seeing that a co-worker played, and Googling it to see what this EVE thing was. I knew it occupied a dark corner of my mind after seeing the learning-curve comic. Then I saw "internet" and "spaceships" and every nerd crack neuron fired.

• How did you first hear about SF, LH, MATH

I played as a miner for 2 mos before our indy/missioning corp was infiltrated by the Umbrella Group and ransomed to death. They killed 2 Orcas and perma-decced us until a ransom was paid. I was frustrated and fed up and decided if I was going to be a target I would earn it. I have a Twitter account for Este and had started following a lot of different kinds of players - Rixx was one, and his posts were entertaining and full of joie de vivre. After getting HTFU'd by wardecs I was ready for some of that. And I knew I'd learn how to fly more aggressively.

• What is it that you enjoy the most about your corp?

Joy and Comradeship. There's a simple joy in undocking and expecting to get exploded, but knowing that your corpies are there to help out, cheer you on, or give you crap for that fit. Oh, god, that fit. :-)

• What have you learned since joining?

There are as many fits as there are pilots. A fancy ship will not help you if you don't have the Skills or the skills. Ran my first and only Enyo into a trap and got exploded (and podded) by a cockbag Thrasher that was cloaked next to a Novice plex gate. The easy-kill Atron in the plex was bait! D'oh! Always GF. When you die, link your own killmail in corp chat - there's no shame (at least in SF), it's a chance for more experienced pilots to tell you why you were shit fit or picked the wrong target.

• Do you have any advice for players looking to start PvPing?

Undock. As a recovering Carebear that was the biggest hurdle. "What do you mean undock when someone might kill me? I might lose my 3M ISK ship! There are REDs in local!" Yeah that. Undock, die, undock again. Have a good attitude. Don't be a sore loser and never be a sore winner. I'm still learning these lessons but in SF it's easier to do 'cause everyone else has the same attitude.

• What are your goals for yourself, or for your corp?

For me, to start getting into more fights I will probably lose. I still shy away from bigger, faster ships or lower-sec-status pilots. I want to fight as many of the pilots on Rixx' Famous Pirates Trading Cards list as I can. As for the corp, I want to eventually not be a liability on roams!

• Do you have a funny Eve story you could share?

Not so funny, but I convo'd every war-deccer who killed me as a carebear (except ZayIinn/UG because *attitude* man) and asked them how? Learned about covops scouts and warpable bookmarks and all sorts of stuff. Bammax was really helpful after he warped his Enyo from 150 off station into the lap of my incursus and simply melted me. I thought it was magic. He explained covops alts.

• What is your favorite thing about Rixx? (lol)

Unlike many of the neckbeards you find in EVE, Rixx is a visual artist with many talents. As a designer by training but nerd by practice I can appreciate that. Also, he's so humble.
(EDITOR: Rixx is very humble! Well said.)

Look for more -ABA- Pilot Profiles in the coming weeks! And thanks to Este for being first.

Not At All Serious Business

It is entirely possible that this whole thing is going to fail. It might not work. It may, as many Eve players like to say, "failscade". No one is more aware of that potential than I am. Trust me. I've failed at more things out here in real life than most people have even tried. From television shows, to movie scripts, to my own decade-long run at owning my own business - I am no stranger to failure.

The thing about failure is this however - you will never experience it without first trying. You can't fail sitting at home in a chair, letting others take risks, or by dreaming about something. You only fail when you try. Failure is not a dirty word. It represents attempt. Failure means you tried, that you achieved. That you strived for something more. Failure is a great teacher. The best teacher. Failure is not something to fear. It is something to embrace.

On average I fail once every seven times I undock in Eve. And yet, I still undock.

They said Stay Frosty would fail. It has been almost a year since the prophecies of doom spilled out at us and yet we thrive. Our membership is higher than ever and more pilots are joining every day. We are one of the most active, insane, crazy, bunch of PvPers in all of New Eden. We are not playing by the rules. We have no end game. We accept anyone that wants to join. It can't work. And yet, here we are a year later.

Our hi-sec corp is humming. The WH corp is starting from a strong foundation, and both corps are under tremendously awesome leadership. Each has embraced the ideas of Stay Frosty and are translating them to their own corners of the Eve universe. What does that even mean? I have no clue. We'll just have to wait and see.

I am excited. My real-life situation has changed tremendously in the last two years and affords me a unique opportunity to be the driver behind this attempt. And I am going to take full advantage of it while it lasts. Will A Band Apart last forever? Of course not. We are after all, playing a video game here. Nothing lasts forever. But will it grow? Will it succeed? Of course it will.

In the end, we may very well fail. That is always a possibility. In the meantime we will continue to do what we do best, have fun and ride the crazy train all the way into the station!

I have many, many more things I would like to achieve in Eve. And I am personally excited to see just how many of them we can, together.

The whole thing is crazy. And that is just the way I like it.

NEWS FLASH: Turns out Jita is a LIE!

First Rule of Eve
Don't Trust Anyone

Second Rule of Eve
Never Give a Person your API or Password

Third Rule of Eve
Pay No Attention to Jita Local

I've never been scammed. And I've never scammed anyone. When I started playing my Corp mates told me to never trust anyone, hold onto my API like it was my first born baby, and generally never click on a link you didn't ask for, or talk in local. I haven't always made the right decisions, and I've trusted people I probably shouldn't have from time to time, but I've never been scammed.

I cringe when I rarely make the trip to Jita. I do not like that place and I've said so many, many times here on this blog. Ugh. It is not at all the kind of Eve that I play on a daily basis and I think it is a blight. But it is the reality and from time to time I have to go there for ebil supplies. I never talk in local or click anything, in general I avoid even looking at local.

Until a few days ago I had never heard the name Erotica1. I wish I still hadn't. I don't pay attention to assholes. I fully support everyone's right to play Eve the way they want to play Eve, and trust in CCP to ban those that cross the line. Over the years I've done my part to help that process along by reporting those that I believe have crossed the line. And I'm proud of the fact that some of those reports have resulted in bans. It is the least I can do as a human being. I personally find many people annoying, rotten, and otherwise juvenile in Eve. I avoid those people. I once quit an Alliance after two days because every single time anyone came onto Comms they would yell an anti-gay insult at the top of their lungs. I'm not gay. But I am a human being.

While I have never been scammed, I have been the victim of other types of aggression in Eve. There are people I have encountered along the way that have made things personal and gone out of their way to try and ruin my game. I won't replay the litany, but even now there are those that specifically target me in-game. Again, no big deal, as long as it doesn't cross the line. I can often give as well as receive.

Jita is a Lie people. No one is quitting the game and leaving you any isk. No one can take your investment and double it, or triple it, or anything else. If it sounds too good to be true? Guess what? It is. There are no short cuts. Guard your API and only give it to those who have more to lose than you do, like an established Corp or Alliance API Verification program. And then only give them the minimum they need to verify you are a real player. Trust no one unless you know them, they have more to lose than you do, and you have independent verification of their bona fides.

Like me. I can't afford to be a scammer. I have way to much to lose. I've spent years of investment in this game and I wouldn't do anything to put that at risk. You can trust people in Eve, you just have to know who to trust.

I'm not getting in the middle of this argument because I think there is no middle. Players that hurt other players within Eve should be dealt with. CCP has always seemed to have a pretty decent handle on this issue. Players should be smarter, better educated consumers. Goodness knows there are so many more assets available now than when I started playing. But CCP cannot police the world outside of Eve anymore than I can.

Be smart. Let's drive scammers out of business by our intelligence, our cunning, and by sharing what we've learned with other players. My corp mates took the time when I was a Noob to explain things to me. We can all do the same.

PS: The API example comes from my own experience and reflects the situation in Eve from over five years ago. CCP has done an amazing job of fixing the API situation since then, making it customizable and flexible. Just an FYI.

The Making of an Alliance Brand

Over the years I've created dozens of Alliance Brands for players in Eve Online. And I've created or helped create my fair share of actual Alliances. A Band Apart is the first time I've actually combined those two elements with fore-thought and planning. My previous Alliance, Burn Away, happened rather quickly without much planning. Which was pretty obvious when it fell apart just as quickly.

This time the idea of an Alliance has been in the works pretty much since Stay Frosty was born almost a year ago. Obviously I had no idea at that time how successful Stay Frosty would become, so the idea of an Alliance would have seemed a tad weird in the early days. But from the beginning the plan was building, forming and evolving along a route that would eventually lead to this. There have been plenty of players along the way that doubted I even had a plan, and yet, here we are.

I thought I'd take you through the process of developing the Alliance brand, give you a behind-the-scenes peek at how it all developed, and some insight into how this all came together.

Inglorious Basterds

It all starts with my very first Eve Corporation called Inglorious Basterds. We won't re-hash the history and the stupidity of that first try, suffice to say I was two years ahead of the release of Quentin Tarantino's film of the same name. I am a huge fan of Quentin's films, of film in general. The entire Stay Frosty brand comes directly from the movie Aliens, for example.

Eventually Inglorious Basterds morphed into my first pirate Corporation, Lucifer's Hammer. Which burned brightly for about six months and then tragically disintegrated due to real life issues I was facing at the time. Lessons learned. And this time, I was determined to not abandon the Corporation. I kept my alt as CEO of Lucifer's Hammer while Rixx went off and played with the Tuskers.

So while Stay Frosty grew like wildfire, Lucifer's Hammer served as a place to put our alts while we focused on pirating. The plan was always ready in the background, to turn LH into more than just an alt dumping ground. But I needed a few things to happen first. For one, I needed good leadership to help run the High-Sec side of things, and two, I needed a WH Corporation.

Over time the leadership emerged that could run LH properly. It has taken time, but I was determined from the beginning to give it the time it needed. We were in no rush. (And sincere thanks to Gwen, Draiv and everyone else who stepped up to the plate!) And then a couple of guys in Stay Frosty contacted me about starting a WH Corp! How about that? Suddenly we had the missing piece we needed. (Thanks to Skine and MiLLY!!)

The plan all along was to make this Alliance something special and unique. A combination of Corporations, all connected by players and a desire to build a strong group. Typically in Eve, players create a "pirate" Alliance by adding pirate corporations. A "WH" Alliance by adding WH Corporations, and on and on. In our case, we are not going to do that. Stay Frosty is the pirate corporation, LH is the high-sec, and MATH will be the WH corp. We don't need more blues, we need more opportunities for our members. Our members are the focus of this Alliance. How cool is that?

Ok, now you have the background. Now to brand building. I was pretty sure from the beginning that I didn't want the Alliance to be named after Stay Frosty. That wouldn't be fair to the members or LH or MATH. We needed a new flag to fly under together, something that would unite us. As usual I dragged my growing list of cool names out and started thinking about it. I even started a thread on the forums and away we went.

Remember Inglorious Basterds? Remember me being a big Quentin Tarantino fan? What is the name of Quentin's production company? The logo at the beginning of each of his films? That's right race fans - A Band Apart.

Given what I've told you about our intentions, it starts to make sense now doesn't it? We truly are a band apart. We've been doing things are own way for almost a year, the Alliance isn't going to be any different. Why not own it?

Immediately of course, I started thinking about a logo. Already people were asking me on the forums about one. So my mind started humming along in the uniquely weird way it has of doing. Connecting pieces. At first I considered copying the actual A Band Apart logo that Quentin uses. But that really wouldn't work well shrunk down on a killmail. So I started thinking about other iconic band images. And lo and behold.

Didn't I have a giant poster of this image on my dorm room wall in College? I sure did. This classic image perfectly encapsulates the independent spirit and rebel nature of our merry little band. Just as it did an entire generation of punk rockers.

I'm totally going to rip this off.

But wait, there is more. A quick google search revealed a lot more to this image than just the album cover.

It seems one of my favorite artists, Bansky, has also had a run at this iconic image. The pieces are really starting to fall into place now!

So I take the original photo and the Banksy translation, mix them into my brain and start to work. I want the final piece to be instantly recognized for what it is, but I also want it to be uniquely our own as well. Not a copy, as much as a faithful rendition. London Calling is a sacrosanct image in the history of Rock and Roll, I have to pay my respects.

I also have to be aware of the uses I'm going to need the icon for. In-game is one small piece of where this image will be used over the coming years. I'm sure there will be dozens of Wallpapers, Posters, Events, and other places where we will need it to work.

A Band Apart
Click to embiggen
This is where we are today. The process continues. According to CCP's rules, we have to wait six months before submitting an in-game logo into the system. So we have plenty of time to refine, change, alter, and perhaps even go in a different direction. Who knows?

But that doesn't change the fact that we need an identity now. I don't want to wait. I want more players to join our three main Corporations. And I have an unusual desire to promote the Hell out of it. As you all know.

So there it is. More than you wanted to know about the process behind the creation of our new Alliance.

Where will it all lead? Are there other plans beyond this? Oh boy, so many sekrits. You'll just have to wait and see now won't you? Muhahahaha.

Announcing A Band Apart Alliance

A Band Apart Wallpaper
Click to embiggen!
As Stay Frosty approaches its one-year anniversary we are pleased to announce the formation of our brand-new Alliance - A Band Apart.

The specific goal of this Alliance is to provide our members the opportunity to experience even MORE of EVE than ever before, and to give new members the options they need in order to survive the brutalities of New Eden. To this end our "family" of corporations are uniquely built and constructed to provide a home for anyone looking for a place to play in Eve.

Stay Frosty - Over 200 members strong, Stay Frosty is one of the largest and most active pirate/PvP corporations in all of New Eden.

Lucifer's Hammer - Our hi-sec corporation is growing and evolving under great management and is the perfect place to make iskies, run missions, build things, and all that other carebear stuff that I don't really understand. But that other people do!

Supreme Mathematics - Our newest "family" member is being built exclusively as a Worm-Hole based corporation.

Low-Sec, High-Sec and WH Space. Now we have you covered. Each corporation will be working together to support and build the Alliance. Members will be free to actively seek opportunities within the Alliance that best serve their needs and the goal is to make the sum greater than the parts.

We are not looking to add additional corporations that fall outside the "family" of companies. There may be a few additional corps that join in the next few weeks that are within that umbrella, but our goal is not to expand the alliance by accepting additional companies. Our goal is to build a strong Alliance from within. To provide all of our members access to the resources and play-styles that they need. And to be eligible to participate in the Alliance Tournament. That's it.

I believe this Alliance is unique and very exciting. We are A Band Apart.

If you'd like to talk about joining one of our member corporations, please join our in-game channel EVEOGANDA to talk with us. Our our Alliance Public Channel The Frosty Hammer.

*The very first Alliance I was a part of when I moved to Null Sec as a two week old noobie, was an Alliance called Libertas Fidelitas (LFA), which was part of the CVA Providence Block back in the olden days. The Executor of LFA is the same player that is now Executor of A Band Apart. (Not the same in-game character, although he is in Stay Frosty!) How cool is that?

On Tour with the Police Pursuit Comet

I have one Police Pursuit Comet. That is probably the only one I will ever have, since I see no point in actually spending my limited isk on something that just looks purty. Don't get me wrong, I love the idea of these new skins. And I would fly them, fight in them, and get exploded in them, if they weren't so expensive. I don't know about other Pirates, but this one is extremely space poor. Luckily, fellow Stay Frostian Skir Skor made a bunch of these when they became available and gave me one for free the very first day! So I have one Police Pursuit Comet.

And I've been flying it every single day since. Not exclusively, I don't fly any one ship 100% of the time. But I have been using it as my mainstay PvP Frigate since I got it fitted up. And believe it or not, the sucker is still alive and kicking. It has been blobbed, ganked, bushwacked, burnt-out, and otherwise gone thru about a hundred drones, but it hasn't yet been defeated.

Within the game I pretend that I stole the Comet. It makes for a much better story. I imagine Rixx saw one and forced the pilot to eject, taking it for his own. But I thought I'd take you thru the kills I've managed to get in this thing so far, some great fights and some not-so-great fights, but they all form a picture of life in low sec and in Stay Frosty.

Police Vs. Incursus
First kill goes to the unlucky FW plexer who actually stood and fought. Well done and while you forgot rigs, you also didn't fit any WCS to your ship. Thank you.

Police Vs Venture
Just another unlucky soul who got in the way of a Stay Frosty roam.

Police Vs Kessie
Another solo kill, even though Skir arrived at the last second. People keep forgetting rigs!

Police Vs Slicer
I love fighting Slicers in Comets, it is always challenging. I win 9 out of 10 when I'm in the Comet and I win 9 out of 10 when I'm in the Slicer... weird.

Police Vs Incursus
Yeah, that Slicer wasn't alone. His buddy also died. Although my mates did more to make that happen than I did. Stay Frosty FTW!

Police Vs Slicer
Another solo kill against a Slicer. Was a good fight though and I'm sure my stuff was burnt out, it usually is.

Police Vs Dragoon
Kudos to Gwen for getting the initial tackle on this Dragoon. He went down faster than I thought he would. Good fight though.

Police Vs Stabber
Luckily we had a regular old Comet along for this one, but this was an excellent ratter catch in an actual belt! Woot.

Police Vs Incursus
This fight was a mess from beginning to end, check out the battle report for an idea of what was going on here.

Police Vs Punisher
Caught Kaeda Maxwell in her Puni, this was yet another bigger fight that broke down into smaller fights in multiple rounds. Good stuff.

Police Vs Incursus
This one was also part of the fight above.

Police Vs Slicer
This is one of the best fights I've had in a very long time. Seliah Aldard was dedicated to killing me and staying to the bitter end. This fight felt like it lasted for a good ten minutes, while Seliah did what a Slicer pilot should do and tried to kite me. That isn't easy when I'm using Railguns and my drones to pick away at him. I manually flew the entire fight and eventually he came in a little to close and I nabbed him with both scram and web. Awesome fight.

Police Vs 2x Thorax and a Moa?
When Stay Frosty sees 2 Rax and a Moa in a Large Plex we do the only thing we can do, we attack. Yeah, we didn't have the right ships for this fight. Whatever.

Police Vs Thrasher
Sometimes I arrive too late to help my mates. But at least I revenged them!

Police Vs Punisher
The Lobsters got a bit too close to that nasty Stay Frosty gang! Poor guy.

Police Vs Mackinaw
Apollo found this guy mining in Onne and called us in. I went 5 jumps to get on this gank. This was not at all a good fight.

Police Vs Condor
Td'd, kitted, and so much slower than him! I imagine all of these odds were going thru the Condor pilots mind during this fight. The one advantage he had, being able to warp off, he never used. So kudos to him. With Spike loaded I can hit people out to my max lock range, plus my warriors will follow you even after I lose lock! Remember that and don't stop boating when you get to 110k. They will catch you.

Police Vs Daredevil
Ciba went in first to get aggro and point on this guy in Heyd. Perfect one/two punch. Well done, shame about the Loot Fairy though.

Police Vs Tristan
Nothing special, just another example of arriving to help a corp mate in trouble.

Police Vs Kessie
Sometimes you arrive at the perfect moment.

Police Vs Punisher
Yet another example of arriving just in time.

Police Vs Slicer
Another great fight. ViRtU0Zone sees me in local and usually asks me for a 1v1, he likes to fight me and vice versa. This was no different and we met at the Sun to have it out. Always a good fight, but he made a few mistakes that cost him the fight.

Police Vs Merlin
Even two WCS can't save you from Police Justice!

Police Vs Venture
Ok, another Venture on scan in a belt. Gotta do eet.

I probably missed a few here and there, but this is a good representation of the variety of fights I typically get. At least in this one ship. During this time I also registered kills in other ships, Retribution, Drake, Exeq, Slicer, Sentinel, and a few others.

I can't just fly one ship or I get bored. But these days the Comet (Police and otherwise) and the Slicer are the backbone of my daily undocking.

Great ships, extremely flexible and able to take on a wide variety of targets. Most importantly though, they match my play-style very well. So they might not work as well for you and your play-style. Results may vary.

Now join Stay Frosty and get out there and have some fun!

1v1 EVE COMIC #66

Click to embiggen

Ok, now there is a Reddit thread about this.

As with most works of art, your personal interpretation says as much about you as it does the artist. If you are feeling uncomfortable about the phallic ship communicating his feelings towards an obviously female-centric Stargate, then that says something about you. As it does me. This panel was created specifically to generate that uncomfortable feeling. As an artist, everything I do has a purpose, meaning and intention. While I could never support or promote an attitude of violence against women, or any other race, gender or cultural perspective - that doesn't mean that I am not allowed to use the tools that modern culture has created in order to highlight specific issues related to them. I will continue to do so.

The mere existence of a thread debating the merits and intentions of this 1v1 panel comic is proof of the success of this approach. Like it, hate it, or laugh at it, that is your right and is based entirely upon your own personal perspective. A perspective that I strongly believe is your right to have. And that I support. The sexual politics at play in this simple panel is intentional. As the creator I purposely infused the panel with those common tropes to create tension and express what I found to be humorous about them.

It is, after all, intended purely as entertainment. But do not make the mistake of attaching the creator with your own personal feelings about the panel. The creator is someone you do not know and have no personal knowledge of. This single panel is not a window into his soul, his life's work, or his relationships with people. It has no deeper meaning to the Artist's personal life. It is simply a work. A work fully intended as a humorous exploration of common themes already present within the context of Eve Online.

As such, I hope you enjoy it, hate it, loath it, or otherwise feel about it as you have every right to do. That is the point.

1v1 EVE COMIC #65

Click to embiggen!!

Amazing what a little skin change can bring, isn't it? The Police Pursuit Comet is proof, in my humble opinion, that Eve is more than ready to embrace simple diversity and custom skin jobs on our ships. I see a lot of them in space.

More CCP, we need more!

UPDATE: Pirate Trading Cards

Over the past two weeks my little side project has turned into a rather remarkable and ever-expanding walk thru Eve's rather dark and nefarious side. Now with 43 cards in the collection, it is starting to feel potentially never ending.

And it could be. I could quite literally make cards until the cows come home - which would be a long ass time, since I do not have any cows. Not to mention weird.

And I sincerely appreciate all of the offers for ISK, or the guys that want to print them for real, and all the other contacts. Why haven't you made a card with me on it yet, is a common refrain. (I can assure my readers that NO ONE has paid ISK to be on a card, nor will I accept payment for this project.)

So I thought maybe it was time to expand on the selection process and try to explain why I will not be making 500,000 cards featuring every player in New Eden. We have a memorial for that in Iceland.

I am genuinely trying my best to keep the set balanced. For example, currently there are only 3 cards featuring my own Stay Frosty pilots. I could easily have picked more of them. (And more are coming eventually) There are members of Tuskers, Black Rebels, Shadow, Bastards, and countless other corporations that are also deserving of a card. In many cases, entire Corporations that deserve a card. Providing that kind of coverage would greatly expand and dilute the entire point of the set.

Add to the above challenge the additional goal of also providing a glimpse into the history of Eve, players that left their mark on the history of piracy in New Eden. This is for me, and I expect others as well, a learning experience. While I have heard many of the names before, I may not have really appreciated the accomplishments of some players as fully as I do now. This is also a factor that I'm trying to balance into the set as I go along.

This is a Pirate-centric card set. There will not be a High-Sec or a Wormhole or a Null set, sorry. Some of those people will make it into the set possibly, just as Chribba or Sindel have already. But I'm interested in Pirates, I am a Pirate and already some of these cards take a significant amount of research and digging on my part. I can only imagine if I was focusing on a play-style I know very little about. That would be insane.

I am also trying to be extremely fair. There are characters already on these cards that I do not personally like very much. But they are there anyway. This is a personal project, so some of my own personal feelings do tend to leak into the cards. This is also on purpose and I believe adds to the fun of the sets.

I do plan on a series of Pirate Corporation Cards. I do plan on several other "special" editions, like the Ally Cards or the Pirate Alert Cards. These help to round out the set in my opinion. And eventually each Pirate Faction ship will most likely get their own card.

Ultimately however, the final determination of who gets their own card has to lie with me. Everyone won't have one. That is nothing personal. I still like you, respect you and enjoy flying with and against you. But I seriously cannot make a card for everyone. This is not a life's work. It is a few minutes in the morning.

I do hope you are enjoying the set. Series One closes at card #52 and then Series Two begins. I believe we will have three series, but I'm not 100% settled on that yet.

We have a long way to go yet.

BB#54: My Eve is Full of Heroes

Welcome to the continuing monthly EVE Blog Banters and our 54th edition! For more details about what the blog banters are visit the Blog Banter page.

* * * * *

Today's topic comes Diaries of a Space Noob blog and other sources:
Quick post. I was listening to a song and a question occurred to me. Where are the EVE heroes? Against a dark background surely all we have are anti-heroes? A lot of mockery is aimed at any who attempt to be white knights. EVE is a dark place and yet pretty much all other MMO's try to place the player in the role of some form of hero, boosting the ego and taking the player out of the humdrum 1 in 7 billion that is RL. Why have I fitted into EVE? Did I never want to be that? So I guess my question is:
Do classic heroes exist in EVE? Is such heroism even possible in EVE? How would you go about being one without opening yourself wide open to scams? Is the nature of the game so dark that heroes can't exist? How do you deal with that irony? What effect does this have on us and the psyche of new players coming in from other MMOs? Is it something special that we don't have classic heroes, or should we? Are our non classic heroes more genuine?

And I would add to this, who have we elevated to the level of larger than life heroes ourselves in the game, and do they actually deserve it?

My Eve is Full of Heroes

Eve is played by people. Eve is not a 'path-oriented' quest, or search, or otherwise pre-programmed step-by-step conquest full of boring NPCs and programmer level writing. Eve isn't about the end, it is always about the journey. Eve is also NOT built on previously established fantasy genres that come with their own sets of pre-determined virtues and structure, within which we all do the same old crap every time we log in to play.

So asking Eve to fit within your pre-determined litany of expectations is rather silly.

Eve is all about this line from an Avett Brothers song, "Decide what to be, and go be it." In fact, the entire thing is a rather great Eve song.

Get deep with it people. Expand your thinking. Don't accept the establishment. Reject compromise. Dream big dreams. Grow up and realize the greatest potential YOU have in Eve - to be who you want to be.

My Eve is full of Heroes. I am surrounded by them. It might seem trite to you for me to say this, but every pilot in Stay Frosty is my personal hero. They would be yours if you knew them like I do. They are the odd ones, the ones that haven't taken the easy road and joined the hordes. They are the misfits that challenge the status quo every time they undock. That fight horrible odds. That go into every single region of Eve and say, "I will make my mark!"

When anyone is in a Stay Frosty gang and they simply type "www" into fleet chat, you know what happens? EVERYONE comes to help. No questions asked. Yes, we die a lot because of it. But we also win gloriously because of it. Or we save our friend's ship. Or we conquer the overwhelming odds stacked against us. Stay Frosty doesn't have friends. All we have are enemies. Our enemies are everywhere. They war dec us, they camp us, they smart-bomb our pods, they send their spais, they mock, tease, and taunt us in local. They have 4-5 link alts running. They swarm us. And yet, my heroes continue to undock.

My heroes put themselves in harms way. They jumped supplies right thru the Wars. They put their ship in danger for the new guy. They help, they assist, they swarm when needed and they never give up.

I use Stay Frosty as an example because it is mine. These are my friends. But I hope you have a similar reaction when you read these words. That you are thinking about your own mates, your own corp, your own Alliance. That you are thinking about yourself. (If not, then you need a change my friend.)

Because my Eve is full of heroes. I fly with them everyday. The rest? I don't care about them. I don't play Eve to be a hero to the masses, to change the universe, to wrong a right, or to right a wrong on the grand scale. Anyone that does is a masochist of the highest order. I play Eve to be a hero to my friends. To give them ISK when they need it, to provide a free frigate when they need it, to put massive events together because they are fun, to build a world around them that lets them play this crazy ass game of ours. To enjoy themselves.

Are their BIG Heroes in Eve? Nope.

Other banters have brought the usual, usual to the fore -The Mittani, or Chribba, or others. These are not Heroes. Those are names. The Mittani never pulled my ship out of danger, or came to my rescue. In my Eve I've never even met him in a ship. My personal feelings aside, the Mittani impacts my Eve in no way at all. He is simply a player of note. Chribba is, on the other hand, someone with whom I have had dealings. As far back as Providence. Chribba is an amazing person and I have total respect for him. But he isn't a Hero.

Eve doesn't need big "H" Heroes. It doesn't need them because it is chock full of day-to-day Heroes. Players that represent the very best that Eve has to offer, no matter what their play-style happens to be. Wromholers, Mission Runners, Pirates, Soldiers, Diplomats, Miners, Builders and all the other aspects of this game have their own Heroes. I salute them.

Eve doesn't need Heroes because it has you.

You decide. Hero or Villain. Light or Dark. No matter what play-style you choose, the choice is yours.

For more Banters, visit this here page.

3,500 Kills

Yesterday I popped a Battle Venture who was with a Kestrel, Slicer and Incursus in a plex. It was a good fight, kudos to them for staying and fighting us. But that fight accounted for my 3,500th to 3,503th kill in Eve.

And before you get your panties in a bunch, I know perfectly well that number isn't the most kills in the universe. I know that number means very little in the grand scheme of things. I know there are many pilots who passed 3,500 kills a long time ago. But I also know there are even more pilots who haven't gotten there, or may never get there, themselves. This is all about personal accomplishment.

And since this magazine is about me, let me take a moment to recognize yet another milestone along the path of my own Eve career. What harm does it do?

There are those readers who may not fully appreciate what it means to be me in New Eden. So let me take a few moments to give you some examples of what it means to be Rixx Javix in space. Yesterday when I entered a system, "Everyone hide! Rixx is in local!" This happens all the time. There are times when I can enter a system with 12 or 15 people in it, and they all vanish in moments. Docked up, gone to a safe spot, or moved on to another system. This happens on a very regular basis.

A lot of people read this blog. And some of them even pay attention. Yesterday I took a trial fit cloaking ship out for a test run, to try and grab some plexers. The person inside the plex was a reader. He knew what I was up to.

And then, the other side of the coin. My presence often has the opposite effect on people. While local will often empty, it is just as likely to form-up to kill me. I get camped a lot. I get followed a lot. I get combat probed a lot. I get taunted in local. I get challenged. I get ganked, blobbed, and pretty much everything else you can think of. There are entire corporations (cough) dedicated to killing me. In fact, based on their actions, I sometimes think I'm the only reason they log on.

I don't mention these things in any way to engender pity from anyone. I only mention them because this is my Eve experience. An Eve experience that I am personally proud of and that I take great pride in. One that I created. That I asked for. And one that I wouldn't have any other way!

Not all of those 3,500 kills have been hard-fought, but the majority of them have been. I don't fly with links. I don't multi-box a scout or an alt or a T3 booster. I am a hunter. My kills typically come because I found someone and exploded their ship the old-fashioned way. Not by camping, unless called for. Not by trickery, unless needed. But by simply finding them and removing them from their ship.

So yes, I do take some measure of pride in it. It may be hard for some people to understand how that is possible and yet I can also say that I don't care about my killboard, or the numbers represented on it. But both those statements are true. I honestly couldn't care less about rankings, efficiencies, ratios, or any of the other nonsense represented by them. I didn't create killboards. Someone else did.

I play for personal enjoyment. I play to fly with my mates in Stay Frosty. I play to have fun. Those are the only reasons I play Eve.

Next milestone? Maybe 5,000 kills. Or maybe, something else?

Draiv's Most Excellent PI Guide

Head on over to Faction Fit Pod for an excellent PI Guide full of actual information, charts, and how-to stuff for all your PI doings.

Go on. I've also added a link to the Maps & Guide page here on Eveoganda.

How to Catch Plexers

The Plexer. Where do they come from? What do they want? No one knows. They are mysterious pilots whose ships haunt our Acceleration Gates throughout Low Security Space. These mysterious strangers are generally against honorable combat, employ weird fits, and run from the first sign of danger. They can be hard to catch and punish.

But fear not fellow Low Sec Warriors, I have some good news. No matter where they come from, what they are up to, or what they want - the plexer can be caught. And I am prepared to impart some wisdom when it comes to catching them and evicting them from your space.

There are two important things to know about these weirdoes. First, whatever they are doing in there is important to them. Second, it is so important that they are willing to desecrate all that is Holy and Right, by fitting the most horrible things on any ship you can imagine! Don't be surprised when that Daredevil in the Plex not only cloaks, but also has three stabs fitted!! (I know, my fingers bled typing that!)

Be ready for anything. Steel yourself for the cloaking Crow, the stabbed Atron, the aligned cloaking Venture and the 4x Stabbed Vexor.

But know that you are in control and that no matter what you face, you can win. It is gonna be frustrating, annoying, and generally weird - but if you follow the advice I'm going to give you - you will destroy them.

1. If they run away, they will come back.

Even if they see you cloak in their plex, just be patient, and 9 times out of 10 - they will come back. If you don't have a cloak of your own, just warp to a safe spot and align back. Watch your d-scan and then pounce, catch them at the Gate or warp in on top of them.

2. Alpha beats Stabs 100% of the time.

4x Stabs won't help them if you alpha their ship. Applied damage wins every single fight against a plexer. I have ships fitted without points and I get tons of kills with them. Some will slip thru your fingers, but then refer back to rule #1.

3. Multiple Points.

You can easily fit two or more scrams if need be, to counter the multiple stabs of the enemy. Just be careful, cause that ship in the plex is not always a plexer! Or, if flying in a gang, jump into the gate together and get scrams on the enemy right away.

4. The Pre-Probe Trick

It is possible to quickly probe a known cloaker inside the plex and then use that bm to burn towards when he cloaks up the next time you enter. This method takes some practice but it works extremely well if you have a talented prober with your gang.

5. Learn how to de-cloak a ship!

I grew up in Null-Sec where I learned the art of de-cloaking ships on gates my first week. Find the enemy and burn straight at him, don't use the overview to do this (if you do and he cloaks on you, your ship will give up!), instead get used to double-clicking either in space or on the overview. This will keep your ship dedicated to moving in space. Once de-cloaked, be prepared to get point quickly. Use your key commands!

6. Don't Give Up!

Remember, giving up is exactly what the plexer wants you to do. If nothing above works, move on to the next system, you can always swing back when his confidence has grown. Returning again and again is an excellent way to annoy them right back! GIve them a taste of their own medicine.

We may not understand why the plexer is there in the first place, but we do know a thing or two about removing them from our space. It can be challenging work, but in the end it is extremely rewarding. Most of the loot will be WCS, but those sell pretty well on the open market.

Last word of advice. Be careful. Lots of people are hunting plexers and that ship on scan may or may not be one. So always be prepared.

And have fun.

Smokey & The Bandit

East bound and down, loaded up and truckin',
we're gonna do what they say can't be done.
We've got a long way to go and a short time to get there.
I'm east bound, just watch ol' "Bandit" run.

- Eastbound and Down, Jerry Reed

We have actually crossed a rubicon now. And there is no turning back. This rubicon crossing was subtle, and you may have missed it up in your wagon, but my feet got wet.

It might be a little "r" rubicon, but no less significant in my opinion. Rubicon 1.3 has given us the perfect Tristan and the perfect vanity ship - the Police Pursuit Comet. These two ships are significant for what they potentially herald as a new era for ships in Eve. An understanding from CCP regarding their greatest asset, a respect for the history of Eve, and a respect for what the players really want. All wrapped up in a patch release.

Let's take a closer look shall we?

The Perfect Tristan

The often maligned and much loved Macross Tristan has been updated into a perfect example of how to treat an existing ship in Eve. Kudos to the Art Department and all those involved in the re-design, you guys (and gals!) got it perfect this time. The ship retains all the elements that made it a Tristan in the first place, while becoming sleeker, thicker, weightier, and more modern all at the same time. The warp activation "wings" are an inspired touch. And while they serve no practical purpose, they might herald a new era in CCP's openness to things that serve no practical purpose.

I warped my Tristan about 40 times just to watch the damn things fold down over and over again.

The Tristan isn't the first ship to get updated over the years. But it happens to be the best example of a smaller ship make-over so far. A ship class in desperate need of love all the way around - Frigates are the backbone of daily life in New Eden and it is encouraging to see them being given the love they desperately need.

Grade: A- (Only because the lower legs only seem to wobble, even with all the new workings under there.)

The Police Comet

I counted thirty-seven different Police Comets out in space yesterday, so I'm calling the concept officially a success already. The Police Comet is important because it represents a new trial in ship skins that may someday result in a level of player customization. We all know this. Just like we all know, deep down, that such a program will be a HUGE success when it finally comes around to be reality.

But the Police Comet is more important to me because of what it means beyond that. We've been asking for a return of the original Comet for years and somewhere deep within the Asgardian Fortress of CCP, someone listened. And now, the Police Comet is not only back - but it is better than ever. It has essentially become a brand new ship!

I honestly didn't expect it to be called the Police Comet and was pleasantly surprised to discover that it was. This is a big deal. And I hope it proves the general concept of addition without much effort. We can take more of this CCP. We really can. We love spaceships, that's why we play a spaceship game. So more please.

Grade: A+

If Stay Frosty had to pay a monthly fee to someone in order for all our corporate ships to feature an awesome skull and crossbones logo - we would. Or the Stay Frosty logo. Or all our Frigates to be ice blue. Maybe.

The sky is the limit when it comes to ship customization. And while the process to get there needs to be regulated and take its time - we still need to get there. It creates no changes to the actual game-play (at least mechanically) and that needs to be true forever. But it does create a huge level of excitement, interest, player involvement and interesting meta exploration.

Something Eve can certainly use more of.

The State of Eve Blogging

Back in January of 2010, when I first started writing this magazine, the Eve Blogging Community was a lot different than it is today. Just a short five years later and, not only has the Eve Blogging Community changed, but so has Eve itself. In fact, a tremendous amount has changed since then.

While I don't know if the number of blogs dedicated to Eve has changed all that much over the years, it does feel like there are less active members these days. It isn't hard to understand why. Blogging is hard for one thing. Being an "active" blogger is even harder. That goes with the territory and is an expected ebb and flow across any community. But the reasons go far deeper than just a certain level of difficulty.

In just the last five years we've seen an explosion in alternative forms of community communication. Twitter, G+, Facebook, Twitch, and all other social media tools are now humming along on a minute by minute basis. These sources have expanded and grown in that time to be extremely vital and important links to a greater community. Now, you don't have to be tied to a page in order to participate in the discussion. Which is excellent. This has opened the doors to more people and more opinions. I'm a huge participant in most of these outlets, especially Twitter.

Eve itself has also changed. Eve works better now than it did five years ago. It is ten times as beautiful, stable, and engaging than it was then. Despite continuing areas that need addressed, the level of frustration is significantly lower than it was when I first started. It is getting harder and harder to grind an axe these days. Axe grinding is the life-blood of blogging.

And finally, CCP itself has changed. In the two years I played Eve before starting this blog, and even afterwards, CCP was a mysterious, far-away land of darkness and strange intent. Little was known. It has been amazing watching as the doors to CCP have opened wider and wider over the years. As the cast of characters have become actual characters and real people. Real people. Who often seem as if they are having as much fun as we are. And are active participants in the same spheres as we are. On a daily basis.

When I started writing it was far easier to wave a flag and demand attention. This needed fixed, that needed to be dealt with, and wouldn't it be great "IF" this happened. It is both easier and harder to do that today. Not when I can just reach out and ask them myself, and expect to get an answer. Today I don't just know the names of most everyone that works at CCP, but I have a dialogue with them, almost daily. Heck, I've watched Punkturis' baby grow up before my eyes on Instagram.

Eve Blogging isn't dead. I still believe it serves a cornerstone function in the greater Eve community. I know for a fact that this magazine does. I hear it from people every single day. This is what inspires me to continue. And I'm sure my fellow bloggers have their own reasons for continuing to do what they do.

But Eve Blogging has changed. As it should. And it will continue to evolve and adapt, Blogs will come and go. New ones will appear and then disappear. This is the way of things.

It has been an exciting and amazing run so far and I remain enthusiastic about where we are headed. As a blogger, as a player, a CEO, and as a fan. Eve has never been better.

And neither have we.

Yesterday's Pew Pew

Another random day in the life of your friendly neighborhood scum-sucking pirate overlord - Rixx Javix. (Hey! That's me!)

Tuesday, March 11th

I don't know what it is about the NEO finally being over for us, but it has certainly helped the quality of pew pew lately. I've gone 22-4 since my Astarte exploded on Saturday. Which, given my cold and real life craziness, ain't shabby.

Yesterday I decided to jump into a new Slicer and tool around a bit on my own, see if I could find some juicy kills early in the day. After DT is always a slow time, but you can often find some early birds to bait with your worm... and yes, I regret having just written that sentence.

I undock and head over to Jov and no sooner do I hit jump, than another Slicer lands behind me. I know this pilot and figure he may be up for some one-on-one action, so I warp off to the Sun. Sure enough we start talking in local and he warps in about 100k away from my freshly fitted Imperial Navy Dart 'O Death. And we begin dancing. No matter how you fit a Slicer you can be sure of two things, 1) the fight will be fast, and 2) the fight will be close. (Not the same kind of close as Comet fights, which always end with something burned out. A Slicer close fight means either you die or the other guy does - fast.)

The fight only took a few minutes and I knew I had him.

We talked afterwards and he seemed stumped as to how I had beaten him. So I did a silly thing and linked my fit. (No secret really, just look at my killboard.) I'm always open to discussing fights, tactics and fits, so we did that for awhile.

I returned to Hev to repair the Slicer and drop off the loot. He wasn't satisfied and wanted another round. He had given me a good fight and I figured he deserved it, even though this is never a good idea. Why? Second fights are always a bad idea. Now the other guy knows exactly how you fit your ship, what the last fight was like, and now has every opportunity to fit his ship to counter yours.

Sure enough, I ended up dying this time. (This was actually the second Slicer I'd lost already, the first was against a linked and boosted Breacher when his buddy in the Dramiel came to assist.) Nothing against ViRtU0Zone, but I totally derped the fight and simply ran out of cap too soon because I foolishly left my useless disruptor running. But so go the fates. Most fights come down to something foolish.

By this time the Stay Frosty gang is finally waking up and getting assembled. It isn't long before Ciba detects a Thorax ratting in Hevrice. I jumped into my fun-time Exeq and off we go. Ciba Hero tackles the Rax and the ratting Tusker goes down pretty fast for a Cruiser.

Having lost two Slicers I decide to take my new Ishkur fit out for a test drive. Sure enough I spot a Slicer in a plex in Jov and warp in on him. I figure he'll turn tail and run off, but magically I land almost on top of him and manage to get a scram on him - oh look, it's ViRtU0Zone again! His Slicer doesn't stand a chance against my Ishkur and he goes down with a good fight.

Slicer day isn't over yet. We spot an Algos and a Slicer in another plex and go in for tackle. Maybe because it is still early, but the fight was sloppy from the beginning and we all pretty much died. My Ishkur exploded, but we managed to get the Slicer and the Algos in the process. So I think we narrowly won that engagement.

>Bunch of flying around with nothing happening for a bit<

Eventually I end up in my Comet. And catch this Ibis sleeping at the iHub. I do let his pod go for good measure. It's not elite PvP, but keel all the things!

By this time our gang has grown to even greater numbers as we start chasing this missioning Drake around for a bit. He finally just docks up and it looks like our chances to nab him are gone, when another Drake appears in the system next door. We rush to the gate and wait. Sure enough, he jumps right into us. Even though he is positive status, we'd already assembled some cruisers for the other Drake. So the poor guy experiences the full weight of being in the wrong place at the wrong time.

While my comrades are scouring local for another missioner, I decide to take a peek down the pipe and see if there isn't something tasty down the road. Sure enough, I hit Loes and there are two potential targets in system - both in different plexes. One is an Incursus and the other a Punisher. I quickly decide to go for the Incursus first, he is in the closer plex and will have less time to react to me being in local. Sure enough, I catch and kill him. Was a good fight though and we even talk about it a bit in local.

I figure the Puni has turned tail and run off by now. But lo and behold he is still in his plex, god bless him. He also gives me a good fight, but explodes anyway. Suddenly it is just me remaining in local and I find it funny that I emptied local by killing everyone in it.

It is starting to get late, and my Comet is running low on charges and ammo. Time to get back to Hev and drop off all this loot. As I pass back thru systems, Beirut tells me Nuke Cave (former Frosty pilot and now with the Screamers) is in local with his own Comet. Naturally I pull up to the Gate and wait to see if he'll jump into me.

Sure enough he does and we both lock each other up and have at it. It is a really good fight and it all comes down to the final moments as his ship is the one that explodes in glorious flames. Good fight all around.

So there it is, the good, the bad and the ugly from yesterday. A pretty typical type of day in Stay Frosty. I didn't even mention our Cruiser gang that got pwned by 400 idiots in Heyd while I was afk. Or the dozen or so other near misses, booster alt linked Deimos, gate camps, and other assorted events that happened. Or almost happened, over the course of the day.

It is pretty awesome.

My Morning Cup of Coffee

If that goddamn beeping doesn't stop I'm going to hurl a smartbomb thru that screen. I need a cup of coffee that's all I need. How early is it? What? That was some dream, something about Amarrian hordes... I dunno, fading already. What is beeping?! The other Astarte was out of range y'know. Gotta get up.

Get that cup of coffee.

Ugh. I was podded last night wasn't I? That explains the dream and the ugh-head I'm wearing. I'm getting too goddamn old for this shit. I need a cat I can kick. Grumble. Beep. Beep. Ok, ok, I can get up I swear I can. I shouldn't have done that.

It's gotta be Joffy beeping. He beeps. Early in the morning. Something about a War Dec or something, again. My wife went to Dodixie yesterday and didn't get in trouble. Be smart. Uhh, my head. Gimme the remote! There, silence.

I swear this Zorr isn't fitted properly. I can feel navigational computations on my retina, and that ain't right. Gotta talk to Doc. Where did I put my pants? Next time I get podded I'm going to just not wake up again. Maybe. I did like that Amarrian chick in my dream. Ok, ok, let's get this day started. Coffee. Convo. Crap.

Ahhhh. God, I look terrible. I swear these clones ain't right. I can't put my finger on it, not without coffee. But it's the little things. My left eye was higher on my face yesterday... maybe. What the Hell do I know?  The water in this station smells like feet. Blue ice feet.

Coffee machine. Click. Minnie Blend. Probably full of rust flakes. Grrrr. Ok, pants. Shirt. Shower. Not in that order. Wait, new body, no shower. Works for me. Where is Mr.Cuddles? Oh yeah, no clone for you old buddy. I need a new cat. To kick. Alright, alright I hear your silent muted beeping! Thank god for this couch.

I think I fell asleep during one of those conversations. I may have agreed to something I'll regret in a few days. Again. What happened last night? Yeah, yeah, nice kills. Good work. Stabbed plexers. Looks like a good tussle, sorry I missed that one. Damn, that hurts. Gotta check the hangar stock. List that. Sell that one. Did I talk to that new recruit? Meh, I'll just let him in anyway.

Yawn. Oh man, that Zorr rings when my ears pop like that. Huh, never considered that navigational trick before. Thanks implant. What's beeping now? What did I lose last night anyway? Tristan. Four packs of smokes. That number for the light show producer. And some coins. Oh, and that lucky plant Zelda gave me. And Mr. Cuddles of course.

Coffee yes. God, it is full of rust flakes! Scotty better have a ship ready, I'm inna mood this morning. There are mornings when I just don't wanna get in the pod again. I must be getting old. That's funny. Nah, the coffee is starting to work. I'll just have to go in the pod, still no bathroom in this place. Stank. Dark thoughts. I'll feel better once someone else doesn't.

I forgot shoes. The gangway is freaking cold. What is that? Oh look, the number for that light show dude. Musta' fallen out. Sigh. Here we go, no hanging around in station for this scum-sucker. Time to breath water.

Did I change the filter on the pod? No. Goddammit. And the heater must be busted, this shit is cold. I'm going somewhere else. I don't have another orifice to shove a wire into!!
Yeah, yeah. Oh...

Oh yeah. That's the ticket. Hello ship. You and I are going to have some fun today, whadda say?

I knew you would.

10 months, 3 days

"Thank you, thank you, thank you!
Your mantra of playing EVE your way
Your terrific artwork that you share with the whole EVE community
Your NEO chase
- awesome stuff, all of it!

Thanks for your many contributions to this silly game!"

– Nyjil

I get a lot of email, convo requests and generally receive tons of feedback (a polite way of referring to local chat.) about Eve. There are times when I log on and spend a considerable amount of my time simply talking to people. It comes with the territory. And I've never minded. The only time I turn down a convo request is when I'm in combat. That pop-up window can be a tad annoying at the wrong time.

I just wanted to say a quick thank you to everyone for your support, comments and feedback lately. To everyone, like Nyjil up there, who wrote in support of Stay Frosty - thank you.

I find it hard to believe that today Stay Frosty has been around for 10 months and 3 days. I find that hard to believe in both a, "Really? That's all!!??" kind of way, and an equally, "Wow, we are still alive?!?" kind of way. It isn't a milestone, it is just what it happens to be today. But it is rather amazing what we've been able to accomplish in such a short time.

We continue to hover around the 200 pilot mark and are arguably the most active and involved bunch of scum-sucking PvP/Pirates in all of New Eden, we've held a major event, survived several wars, angry neighbors, horrible predictions of impending doom, nasty betrayals, and participated in the NEO Tournament. All while racking up 18,800 kills. And having a lot of fun to boot.

I am beginning to think this thing might just work.

Of course it will. And we are not even close to being done yet. We have many more surprises ahead, many more events to run, many more tournaments to compete in, many more pilots to chase and explode, and many more new things to accomplish. Heck, it has only been 10 months and 3 days! For goodness sake, where will we be in another 10 months?

"Excellent. Most excellent."

Yeah, I feel a tiny bit like Doctor Evil this morning. I want laser beams on freakin' sharks!!!

Ok, back to my evil lair to hatch plans for next time.

NEO: What I Learned

We went into the New Eden Open for two reasons. Primarily to have fun and enjoy ourselves. And secondly to learn. The first reason is, of course, the heart of being Stay Frosty. We strive to enjoy Eve at every turn. So that one is easy, it just seems to happen no matter what we are doing. The second one is the trick.

I strongly believe that we all learned a lot. About how the tournament system works, about counter-programming the established Meta, and about ourselves and each other. Our experience will serve us well as we move forward toward our ultimate goal, which is to win future tournaments. No secret there. As one of the most active PvP/Pirate corporations in all of New Eden we want to build towards active participation in all tournaments. And to challenge for the title in each one. Why not?

I want to take a moment and give a shout-out to all of the pilots that participated in the NEO.

Oma Lorche - For being one of the most fearless and daring pilots I've ever known, for flying a Cynabal like nobodies business, and for always being so willing to help.

Eoghan Gorthaur - For being the first fully certified Stay Frosty Logistics pilot! (Thanks to Oma for that one.) You are awesome in our book mate.

Angelina Molou - For being so enthusiastic and willing to pitch in, be on comms, and support your teammates.

Watson Crick - An amazing pilot who is always eager to learn and challenge himself in everything he does.

Prda Prda - For always bringing a smile to our faces with your insane enthusiasm. You are the best back-up pilot ever.

Draiv Solregard - For always being honest and challenging our comps for all the right reasons, your advice and wisdom are invaluable.

Bogdan Yassavi - For your help in building our comps, challenging our assumptions and being an all-around awesome guy.

Joffy Aulx-Gao - Joffy is the most awesome because he is so enthusiastic and supportive, and insanely pro Stay Frosty. He keeps us all going to be honest.

John Wildcat - Another rock and a great pilot you was willing to fly just about anything, I'll always remember him as the pilot who would have flown the Immolator to glory!

SKINE DMZ - And last, but never least, Skine. One of our best pilots, always willing to do whatever it takes.

That was our Stay Frosty NEO Team ladies and gents. A scum-sucking group of misfit pirates if ever there was such a thing. Kudos and appreciation to each of you for putting aside your time to help build a crazy team. Thank you.

So what did I learn?

The pressure of performing is extremely high and not something you want to underestimate. Nerves, stress, pressure, all of these are abundant and ever present. But as I kept telling our team, it all boils down to PvP. Something we do every single day, we undock and we fight.

More importantly however, I learned that the Meta is something to ignore. The pressure to conform is extremely strong and powerful. But it is critical to play to your strengths, to ignore the general tide of the meta, and go with what you believe in. It is easy to say this in hindsight, but I feel that I personally and ultimately failed our team in this critical regard. In our three matches we ignored the meta once, and that one was the match we won. When we tried to build a meta comp, and compete on equal terms, we lost both of those matches.

We are not conformist. And trying to be what you are not is a recipe for disaster. When we went for it, when we flew what and how we know to fly, we did very well. I had never flown an Eos or an Astarte in combat before. And many of our team pilots were also flying ships for the first time. Heck, Rixx was never intended to be a boosting alt and I've been furiously training Leadership skills since NOVEMBER just so I could fit links!

This speaks volumes about our core issue in general. The overall age of our corporation and our team is young. Many of the potential comps we could have considered had to be scrapped because we couldn't field the ships or the mods needed. Again, I don't make excuses, this is simply our reality. And nothing but more time is going to fix that. Which it will.

This experience has also reinforced my disdain for blaster based comps in these situations. Don't get me wrong, I love blaster boats. But I have no faith in them for tournament play. Both our losing matches were blaster based. In both matches a more projected, control based comp would have prevailed. The reason we ended up winning the match we did came down to projected damage, taking down ships from range, before major engagements.

These are all valuable lessons that we help us in the future.

Most of all however, reason number one - to have fun! And we succeeded in that goal far above our expectations. I had a blast. And I enjoyed every minute. And I'm already looking forward to next time.

Thanks to everyone who rooted for and supported our team. We are not done and we will be back again. We learned a lot, about how the tournament works and about ourselves and who we are. Those are lessons that will travel with us as we go forward.

Stay Frosty.

The Eveoganda Art of Rixx Javix: Coffee Table Book

While I can't afford, nor do I have the right, to print a real "coffee table" style art book - no one can stop me from creating one and sharing it with my readers for FREE.

I have been working on this project for many months, adding and subtracting, and updating as new material became available. This was, for a long time, just a passion project. Something I wasn't sure would ever see the light of day. But as it sat there on my hard drive, it continued to call out to me to finish it. I can't ignore the cries of my work forever. And so, I started to put the final touches on it. Beat it into a format I liked and see how few words I could get away with.

Thanks to Seismic Stan for taking the time to provide an excellent foreward, the project finally had the legs to leave me. Many, many thanks Mat. That was the final piece needed to make it seem "real" and not just another imaginary work.

The PDF of the book is available via download at THIS LINK.

I hope it becomes a valuable addition to your Eve collection. And should you be bereft of inspiration one day, that something you find inside its pages would fill you with the urge to undock and explore the universe of New Eden.