A 12-Step Program for RecoveryBy Furious Fukuda, Stay Frosty
Before I begin, a distinction needs to be made between fatalistic carebearism and participating in carebear activities. One can run missions, explore, be involved in industry and even mine all weekend without suffering from fatalistic carebearism. The difference is not dissimilar to that of a social drinker and an alcoholic. A social drinker knows when enough is enough, whereas an alcoholic does not.
Fatalistic carebearism is a disease. It does not focus its attack on the body or mind like many other ailments. Instead, it attacks the will and wreaks havoc on the soul. Left unchecked, fatalistic carebearism will chip away at a person’s sense of self-preservation until they become nothing more than a habitual victim. Those afflicted will come to accept that they are merely prey, food for the predators of New Eden.
Fatalistic carebearism doesn’t have to be a death sentence. By following the steps outlined below, and with perseverance, you can break the shackles of this horrible illness and reclaim your rightful place amongst the other immortals of Eve. It won’t be easy, but I know you can do it.
Accept that death is a part of New Eden – No matter how well you plan, or where you hide, death will find you, or at least your clone. The only way to truly avoid death is to never undock, or never log in and where’s the fun in that? Accept death as your companion and minimize its impact by flying things you can afford to lose.
Understand that YOU are a higher power – You are a capsuleer, an immortal, a god amongst men. Remember, if someone turns your pod into confetti in the depths of space you will be reborn moments later. You are an unstoppable force limited only by your will to succeed. Just remember to keep your clone up to date and your losses will only be material.
Know that PLEX is not the answer – Contrary to what many may believe, there is no “I Win” button in Eve. No amount of officer or deadspace mods will save you from a determined foe. All they will do is paint a bigger target on your back, and make it less likely that you will dictate the time and place you engage. As an example of what not to do I give you this: Quan HonorTheCall.
Take a personal inventory of who you are and what you can do – Do you prefer to kite, brawl, or maybe you prefer something stealthy. Know what you are comfortable with and then check your skills to see if they’re in alignment with what you enjoy. If not, develop a training plan to get you there. Knowing your skills will also help you determine what fights you have a chance of winning. Once you’re in your comfort zone start trying out other combat styles. You may find you have more talent than you realized.
Learn from those who have come before you – Ship fitting can be tough when you’re not experienced in PvP. Luckily, there are many resources available to help you fit a ship that won’t get you laughed at. Failheap, Battleclinic, the Eve University Wiki and even Eve-Kill are all great places to find fits. When you find one that interests you bring it into EFT or Pyfa and take a closer look. Do you have the skills to fly it? At what ranges are all the modules effective? What sort of DPS do you get with different ammo types? Read the module descriptions if you don’t know what they do; understand the ship and its purpose. Then, consider taking it out for a spin.
Prepare for the road ahead – Never walk blindly into the abyss. Learn as much about the area you’ll be flying in as you can. The ingame map statistics, Dotlan, and Eve-Kill can all provide valuable information about where you’re headed. Knowing what has been killed, and what has been doing the killing, will help you in deciding if you’ll be able to have an enjoyable hunt.
Never forget where you’ve come from – Bookmarks, bookmarks, bookmarks. I cannot stress enough the importance of bookmarks. Make safespot bookmarks, bookmarks of perches over gates and bookmarks of spots to scan from in relative safety. Hell, make bookmarks of bookmarks. Bookmarks will keep you alive and help you find good fights. Not sure how to make good bookmarks? Check out this guide from Rixx Javix: Idiot's Guide to Bookmarks.
Know your surroundings – The Overview is probably one of the single most important tools in Eve. A properly set up overview can save your ass, and one that’s not set up correctly will get you killed faster than singing the Amarrian national anthem in a Matari biker bar. Azual Skoll of The Altruist blog has written a fantastic guide on the subject. You can find it at: Overview Setup for PVP.
Look before you leap – Probably the second most important tool in Eve is the directional scanner. Dscan while you warp, Dscan when you’re in a safe spot, even Dscan while you fight. Dscanning will help you find great fights and also let you know when it’s time to haul ass. Azual Skoll, again, has written a great guide to Eve’s directional scanner here: The Directional Scanner in PVP.
Paranoia, paranoia, everybody’s coming to get me – If you want to be a shark in the sea of New Eden you have to live like a shark. Many species of shark need to keep moving to stay alive, and so do you. The longer you sit in one place, the more likely a larger shark will come and take a bite out of your ass. This is where all those bookmarks you’ve made will come in handy. Bounce between them often so you don’t give probers a chance to lock your position.
You are not alone – For me, this was the most important step. Finding the guys of Stay Frosty permanently changed my Eve Online experience for the better. I still fly solo most of the time, but they are always there to talk to about my experiences and as a batphone if I bite off more than I can chew. Finding people to share Eve with can be difficult, especially if you’re shy, but there are a few places you can look. Try starting an Eve twitter account and follow some of the people on #tweetfleet, or check out Stay Frosty’s channel in Eve, Eveoganda. Finding people to learn from and share Eve with will greatly enrich your experience.
Never underestimate a big set of balls – Ok, so you’ve learned about ships, skills, bookmarks and how to find or avoid trouble. You may have even found a few friends along the way. Now comes the most important part. You have to hit that undock button. Get out there and get into a fight. You’ll probably get your ass kicked, but at least you can say you tried. Who knows, you may actually win. All the things you’ve learned will amount to nothing if you don’t put them into practice, so go have some fun.
These are only the first twelve steps in a much longer journey, but they will help you on your path. Fatalistic carebearism is not an easy monster to slay, but it can be defeated. Just remember to always learn from your mistakes, relish your victories and Stay Frosty™.
[This post originally appeared on the Stay Frosty Forum and is reproduced (!) here by permission of the author. Seriously, I asked him and he said yes.]