Why So Negative?

“Negativity is a tendency to be downbeat, disagreeable, and skeptical. It's a pessimistic attitude that always expects the worst. Negative outcomes are bad outcomes like losing a game, getting a disease, suffering an injury, or getting something stolen.”

One of the first things I heard about Eve when I started playing almost eleven years ago was, "Eve is dying", why bother playing? The game won't last much longer. CCP is determined to kill it. They don't know what they are doing. Look at the server numbers. You'd have to be an idiot to believe otherwise. That was eleven years ago.  And I suspect it has been there since the beginning.

This is a lot like the supposed intelligence of Mittens, if you say something long enough, people will start to believe it. In fact, it is even worse than that, the human brain is predisposed to believe negative information over positive information. It is part of our biological past, inherited from our prehistoric ancestors. Negative information requires an immediate response, an action, or some emotional trigger. Positivity on the other hand means things are ok, chill, steady, no action is required. And so they tend to filter toward the back of our lizard brains.

It has been proven that successful relationships need at least a 5 to 1 balance between positive and negative inputs in order to thrive. 5 times the positivity in order to thrive. Get that out of whack and you break up or get a divorce. This is one of the main reasons I recommend players stay away from Reddit (All humans should) and other bastions of negativity. Your input ratio can get out of whack quickly and you'll start to feel the stress, the worry, the negativity overtake you. It might manifest itself in different ways, but for the sake of our topic today - you might just quit playing Eve.

And because Eve refuses to actually "die" as predicted, the rest of us get to experience you and your negativity hanging around afterwards. This is one of the weirdest behaviors that puzzle many players, why do quitters continue to hang around? Why do they not move on? Why continue to harangue the rest of us? 

All of which is not only bad for Eve, but also truly bad for you. Emotions are contagious, just like diseases. Take a moment and read this Wired article on that very subject.  In fact, spend any amount of time googling and reading articles on the subject and you'll quickly start to understand what I'm getting at. Articles like this one in Psychology Today about Negative Bias are excellent places to get started.

Look, eventually Eve will die. So will I. So will you. That is gosh darn sad. I don't like the idea anymore than you do. However, I do choose to live those days being realistic and balanced in my approach to my life, my hobbies, and my personal relationships. I'm not an overly optimistic person, in fact I'm rather prone to horrible bouts of depression, anxiety, imposter syndrome, and dozens of other weirdo mind-fuck things I can't control. Much like you I bet. I'm not perfect by any stretch of the imagination. But I do strive towards balance and I do try to learn from my mistakes.

Eventually the negative people will be right. Their self-fulfilling prophecy will come true. On that sad day they won't be happy about it. Oh sure, they will be impossible to live with for a few days, but then they will move on to the next thing. What they will leave in their wake will be thousands of once happy Eve players who suddenly have to live without Eve.

Is it any wonder people aren't playing Eve?

Think about the environment we're asking them to join. Is it 5 to 1 on the positive side?

Sadly the answer to that is certainly negative.