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3.5 out of 5 stars
Eve Online: Commissioned Officer Edition
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91 of 101 people found the following review helpful
on October 29, 2010
Warning: long and detailed =>

While I have not purchased this particular version of the product, I had played Eve nearly continuously from Open Beta until about a year and half or so ago (when I stopped due to a lack of time), however when time permits I have activated my account for a month here and there a couple of times since then. To be honest it has an extremely steep learning curve as it is unlike any other game out there, however they have done amazing things with making it easier to learn and once you catch on to the basics it is pretty intuitive as to the user interface. Unlike other MMO's they also offer their regular expansions (typically about two per year) free to their player base (thus you don't have to spend an extra $50 to buy the new shiny bits every so often in addtion to your monthly subscription).

However this game is not for everyone. If you want to play a brain-dead game that takes very little thought you are better off with something like WoW (which in my opinion is about as challenging and engaging as opening a box of cereal). Having played more than 20 different MMORPG's over the last 10+ years, Eve Online is by far the most flexible and engaging that there is. Characters are not cookie cutter as they are in games such as WoW, in fact you are unlikely to find any two characters that are exactly the same in Eve, even with the hundreds of thousands of active accounts that exist within the single game universe (yes, everyone in the world plays together, as they don't have hundreds of different servers, but one single server farm that handles the single game universe). There are no "classes" or "professions" that limit what you can do or what you can be good at or what you can learn. In Eve Online you can train and do just about anything you set your mind to, and training is handled off-line such that you don't have to play 20+ hours a day to become powerful.

It allows for both hard-core gamers as well as casual gamers (and both can be very successful), there are no experience points and no levels. Likewise you need to be cautious as if you come across another character you have no idea if they are simply a newbie or are a skilled and dangerous player. It is also possible for a character that has been around for years to be "taken out" by a new player or character, as no one way of doing things always conquers. There are things that only small ships are capable of doing and accomplishing, likewise there are things that can only be accomplished if flying a capital ship that takes a year to work up to being able to fly and build. Likewise there are things for combat twitch gamers to do and keep their adrenaline going, while there are plenty of things for casual "care-bear" gamers to do as well (and can make damned good game money doing so with such things as mining, industrial manufacturing, hauling and transporting, or even simply buying low and selling high a wide variety of equipment and commodities in the game). There are also thousands of NPC "missions" that can be run with a variety of themes (combat, trade, hauling, mining, manufacturing, as well as combinations of these) and difficulties (can be done with a light frigate to those where you need to have an organized group of skilled pilots flying high-end battleships).

Then there are player operated and run "alliances" (essentially groups of "corporations or player run governments) that claim and rule over their own sections of space (in some cases very large sections of space). However even with more than 5,000 solar systems (all with numerous planets and resources) prime real estate is still a very hot commodity, so these alliances are constantly battling between one another (sometimes involving huge battles with hundreds of players involved on each side, and with make WoW and other similar games "arena" type battles look like a friendly game of tic-tac-toe by comparison). Not to mention that there is probably no other game or virtual world where political, military, economic, and industrial espionage all occur and one needs to be on their guard if you participate in any of these aspects of the game on a large scale. And from an economic standpoint, this game environment is a prime example of what a truly capitalistic economy is capable of being. The business end of things can be very cut-throat in some areas and commodities, but can be very rewarding and profitable if one knows what they are doing. As an example, one of my characters in the early days of the game manufactured and sold nearly 1-billion isk ("Inter-Stellar Kredits" I think is the intent of their in-game monetary system) in ammo before selling my entire collection of ammo blueprints (for every type of ammo that was available in the game at that time, all of which were heavily researched to maximize efficiency) for a sizeable amount to an organization that was one of the early fore-runners of the alliance system (before the mechanism for creating alliances even existed).

And unlike other games were resource recovery was added in as an afterthought, in Eve Online, it plays a major role in everything (if you control access to valuable resources, you control those resources, thus a major portion of the reason for claiming various solar systems or regions of space). As most items you purchase is made by a player and requires appropriately large quantities of resources to manufacture. Although even the rarest of resources are still available in many different locations, so it is probably next to impossible to truly control the economy. Although I have seen it done with an item for which there were only two blueprints available early on in the game and the owner, who purchased both of these BP's from the people who "found" them) thus became the sole supplier of them and was able to effectively set up their own monopoly and made billions of isk from the venture (at least until more BP's eventually became available).

Or if you have a darker side, there is always piracy (and if not, you will want to learn quickly what areas of the game to avoid to keep from being jumped by player pirates, as there are a fair number of them) along the fringes of the "safe" zones (security ratings 1.0 to 0.5) and the lawless zones (where the alliances tend to control large tracts of space, security ratings of 0.4 to 0.0), as the pirates tend to sit and wait along the borders of these areas and often work in small but organized groups. But beware of doing this as there are definitely repercussions, as by being a pirate you usually end up becoming "wanted" with a "bounty" being placed on your head (yes this is an active mechanism in the game), where other players will try to hunt you down for the reward and you may not be able to even enter "civilized" space without even the NPC "cops" ("CONCORD" as well as NPC law enforcement ships) attacking you.

Thus if you are interested in a game that is truly engaging and where you don't have to sit at the computer for hours on end and let it take over your life to be successful (as there are hundreds of ways to be successful, with each person being free to pursue any aspects of the game that they enjoy), then this game is well worth considering. As far as the other persons comments about not being able to transfer your free 14 day trial over to this version where you can train your character more quickly, trust me, you will make lots of mistakes and I highly recommend that you use the free trial first and then go ahead and create a new character if you purchase this product, as you will not be out that much time anyways (as the first couple of months you will still be learning what you can and want to do to enjoy it anyways and will likely change the direction of your training plans more than once). I also strongly recommend that you either find someone you know who plays to help guide and/or tutor you or that once you are in the game that you try to find someone there who is willing to help by giving advice and answering questions for new players as it does have a steep learning curve and there are so many different options and things you can do that it will likely blow your mind and you may feel overwhelmed initially.
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
on September 4, 2011
Verified Purchase
MMO's are all over the place and many of them follow a set design method, this game however takes the road less travelled. EVE is what you would call a sandbox, its a giant open world (universe in this case) where you and the other players make the world what it is. This game has something for everyone but it really depends on whether or not this game is your cup of tea. I've got a little over a month in this game and I'm still just beginning to scratch the surface of what this game has to offer.

You may have seen or heard that this game is hardcore and requires you to have no life, that simply isn't true. I work full time, take college classes, and have time for this and many other hobbies. One of the things that stands out is character advancement, its all handled by individual skills (no leveling up here), the skill themselves can all be trained to a maximum level of 5 and have a set amount of time to fully "train" to the next level. For example, Evasive Maneuvering 5, takes about 8 days to train, but that time is counted whether your logged in or not. So if you have 5 minutes you can log in, update your skills to be trained (up to 24 hours worth, so if you have a skill that takes longer that 24 hours to train then you'll only have one skill in your queue) and continue on with your day if you don't have time. Keep in mind that many of the first few levels of a skill can be trained in very short amounts of time (a lot of the first levels only take about 7-15 minutes) and there are MANY skills to learn. Creating your character is very in-depth as the most recent expansion (which all expansions are offered to the player base free of charge and usually occur 1-2 times a year) added full character customization and captains quaters to walk around in, while it's not a massive leap forward, it is a step toward allowing pilots to interact with each other outside their ships. When you pick your race, don't fret about it too much, go with whatever you like as there is no restrictions on what you can fly, I'm a Caldari but I fly a few Gallente ships as I like their designs a bit more in some cases.

Once you've gone through the character creation process you'll be presented with a tutorial, while in most MMOs I'd say skip it however I can not stress enough that doing the tutorial and ALL of the starter missions thats come after you get through it are important as each of the 5 tutorial mission agents offer plenty of cash (ISK), skill books and even different ships to you, by the time its done you'll have a basic understanding of the game, a few ships, skills and enough cash that when the day comes that you loose one (and you will loose many ships) it won't be the end of the world. "Don't fly what you can't afford to loose", this is probably the most important rule to remember, if you keep your ships fairly cheap then loosing one won't be a big deal.

This can be something that can turn people off but pirating and scams are a huge part of this game, be warry of ANYONE offering a service/investment etc. that doesn't use the "Market" system in game, its probably a scam and you will not be reimbursed for ISK lost due to a scam. Now about null-sec and low-sec, STAY AWAY! For the first month or so, I learned this lesson the hardway when I jumped into null-sec thinking I'd be fine and wound up in the middle of a gate camp...not pretty. Players have little to no mercy, some might offer the chance to surrender your money or tell you to eject from your ship in exchange for sparing your life. I'd take mercy when it's offered as dying has some penalties that can be harsh if your not ready for them, first off ANY implants you have plugged in to your character are destroyed upon death (when your ship is destroyed you'll eject in an escape pod but if thats destroyed its called being pod-killed). Also if your clone isn't upgraded to protect however many skill points you'll have, you can loose some skills upon death so always keep your clone updated just in case the worst happens.

About flying, some people are incredibly put off by how EvE handles ship control. It's handled primarily by a context menu, for example on the right side of the screen is a box that lists all planets, stations and ships on your radar, by right clicking you get a little menu that gives your some options such as "orbit", "approach" and/or "warp to" click one and your ship handles the rest. You can manually control your ship to a certain extent by double click in the direction you'd like to go, which can be handy in combat when your orbiting an enemy ship and want to adjust your flight path so you don't fly close to another ship and get torn up by their guns and missles. This control system may seem kind of weak and at first it had me a little on the fence about the game but once you've gotten into the game a bit you become very comfortable with the controls. One of the main reason's that this simplified control system is in place is that every EvE player is on the same server, there are no seperate servers, over 300,00 people all on 1 server (which is the current player base according to the website, I don't know how accurate that is however as I tend to see about 50,000 on at any given time), the system exists because it cuts down on the amount of traffic between the client and server and allows for so many to be on the same server.

Combat may seem simplistic but once you get a bit further into the game you'll see that there is a lot to be had, having your ship properly outfitted for the task at hand is paramount, flying into low-sec and null-sec (which I don't recommend until you've got a good grasp on the game's mechanics) without your ship being properly fitted for speed and to withstand warp disruption, will cost you a ship and your life. Pirates are not stupid, they know where the choke points are, they'll be waiting outside stations where your docked and where you jump in to a new system. Now the entire game is not all low-sec and null-sec, there are many of these zones but there are also many hi-sec zones that have police (Concord) ships patrolling, if someone opens up on you, they'll feel the heat.

Once you've finished your tutorial and starter missions you should have an idea on what you want to become as a pilot, there is no limit to how many skills you can learn so if you have the patience you can learn any and everything. There are many players who have no desire to fly in combat, there is nothing wrong with that. You can mine asteroids, build ships and equipment and even explore wrecks and ancient structures. However if combat calls you, then you can be a merciless pirate outlaw, or a deadly combat pilot in service to your people's militia. There is so many things you can do that I could go on forever about the options available, it's truly a world for you to become a living and breathing character. There are agents (npc mission givers) that offer up missions for whatever you'd like to specialize in and are a great way to earn cash, standing and keep you occupied while you continue to learn the game. One of the best things about the game is the community (minues pirates...I hate pirates), other players tend to be helpful and will offer advice and in a few cases I've experienced, some extra ISK to help get you started. There are plenty of player run Corporation (EvE's version of guilds) that will take new players on and teach them the ropes and help get them out fitted with better ships and equipment. One worthy of being mentioned is EvE university, they offer classes to all new players and are a great way for new players to get set up, if your interested Google them and see for yourself. They are by no means the only corp. that does that but probably one of the most well known.

To summerize, EvE is a great MMO. You just need to go into it with a willingness to learn and some patience this can be a great game, there is also some interesting things coming in the future that you should be aware of, the main one is Dust 514, which is a PS3 exclusive first person shooter, set in the EvE universe. While in Eve your a ship pilot, Dust 514 has you and everyone else in the game playing as mercenaries on the ground fighting it out, but the two games will overlap as EvE players can supply and offer jobs to Mercenary units. Its an interesting concept but a good idea is one thing and execution is another. That being said, EvE is in my opinion one of the best MMOs you can buy, there is so much to do and the community is great, the difficulty of the game tends to keep most of the younger and/or immature crowd away. The website offer a free 14 day trial which if your thinking about this game I would very much recommend, I can offer you a 21 day trial if you prefer through the buddy program, just send me your email and I'll send you a buddy invite. Something to note about this version, the Cerebral booster can only be used on a character less than 30 days old, so if you do a trial and then buy this game you can still claim the booster for that character but he/she will only be able to use it until day 30 of their life. You can't get another once you've claimed it, only 1 per account. Sadly I lost mine in a tragic Goonswarm (Pirate corporation) gate camp, I've been told you can petition to get it back but we'll see how that goes. Just keep that in mind. Anyway, I hope this review helps anyone interested in this game, if you've had your interest peaked then let me know and I'll send you a buddy trial, 21 days free is a lot better than 14. Take care and I'll see you in space.
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20 of 24 people found the following review helpful
Eve is as the first post said, incredibly open ended and unmatched in complexity or reward.

Only three things I would add, having played continuously since 2004...

In Eve you can die, and when you do, you can't go reanimate your corpse. Your ship blows up, which can happen when shot by players or npcs and possibly neural boosting implants, which will be in your character who will be in an escape pod, escape pods can only be destroyed by players. Yes there are relatively secure areas of space, but in Eve you can always die. Most say don't fly what you cant afford to lose.

In Eve you can pay for your subscription with in game currency. This is commonly done, and afk, you can still pay for your account with minimal effort and minimal real money.

In this specific edition: there is an item the Cerebral Accelerator. Yes, it is as another reviewer said interesting to get the account and what to do with it, and so on, but, that item is currently going for 650 million in game, and a month of game time costs hmm 350 - 400 million in game. So, potentially you are looking at 1 30 day time code in this box. And if you sell the unique item, a second month free, with enough extra cash on the side to buy and kit out a nice little trade business, or ship of some sort.

Regards
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18 of 22 people found the following review helpful
on January 2, 2011
I've played this game for over a month now, and I initially was looking into any kind of MMO. EVE caught my eye as the game that isn't easy to play. Games like WoW are popular because it's easy to play, and your endorphin rush is constantly fueled by small, insignificant rewards.

EVE, from what I've seen, is a deep and complex simulator of life in space (similar universe to Star Trek, Star Wars, your typical space opera). CCP themselves call it a MMOG instead of MMORPG.

The rewards are slower but more meaningful. Your progression in the game is measured less by flashy "Level Up!" signs and more by the excitement generated by the player when he/she is able to fly that awesome ship they've been waiting to fly, or to be able to contribute to large fleet battles, or to advance in roles in their corporation (guild).

The game sounds like this one paper: A space opera simulator in a large sandbox environment that allows the player to do whatever they want. As a player, you don't have to do missions. You can start out mining (the foundation of the player generated market ingame), you can explore wormholes and other anomalies for large profits, you can take a dip in entry level PVP. The idea is that you can do whatever you want, and there is not single way to play the game.

I won't go through the different aspects of the game, as it's pretty well described on eveonline.com and other websites. What I will mention is my absolute favorite aspects of this game.

1. Everything has consequence. Dying in this game is not a game. Dying means you loose the hard earned money you spent to buy and fit your ship. Unlike other mmo's where the goal is to make dying less significant (to attract inexperienced gamers), dying in EVE is meaningful. Later on down the road you can fit a very powerful ship, and loose it in a fleet battle, and the ship doesn't spawn back in a few seconds. You loose it for good. I love it. I've died many times, gotten ganked by other players, destroyed in fleet battles, and each time is a learning experience. Ever time I died I would tell my corp mates god I love this game.

2. One shard universe: unlike almost every other MMO in the market, EVE runs on one big server. The average number of players sharing the same universe with you at the same time is at least 40,000 to 50,000 (total number of players online at any given time). So everything you do will affect other players around you. If you did something significant in the game, the entire playerbase of EVE will hear about it. Just look up all the news EVE players have been making doing all the crazy things like corporate takeovers, massive fleet battles, etc.

3. MASSIVE FLEET BATTLES: By massive I mean hundreds to thousands of players in one area. Multiple corporations form alliances, and when alliances go to war, that is a sight. You have never seen something like this in any other game. Every player has an important role. Flying the biggest ship doesn't mean you'll win. Fleet tactics vs who can press 1, 2, 3, 4 faster.

4. Mature community: The game has one of the most impressive communities I've ever been a part of. There are almost no annoying trolls, "your mom" jokes, and other nonsense you see from communities like xbox live. The community is mature. The good players would love to help you, and the evil players would love to kill you and loot your money. But they are mature, and that's hard to find in a gaming community.

5. Player generated market: Every single item for sale ingame is manufactured by players. You can buy blueprints, and use the refined ore you mine to manufacture things in game. This mechanic allows players to pick careers where all they do is play the market. The same real world mechanics of market analysis and stock trading is used and used extensively in the game.

What I've found greatly secured my enjoyment of the game is the fact that I joined a corporation early on. EVE is not a solo game. There is no soloing at all. YOU DO NOT SOLO! Conquering the universe is best done in groups. Plus it allows for the opportunity to make the steep learning curve much less daunting.

The only thing I didn't like about EVE is the slow pacing. You will not reach a level cap in 1 month (WoW). To be able to fly the most powerful ship in the game (Titan), you will need to spend about 200 to 300 days training all the skills. Training skills is done automatically, you set the skills to train, and you don't need to be playing the game for the training to continue. This "flaw" is a double edged sword. One the negative side, it takes longer to achieve significant advancements in the game. On the positive side, it effectively removes the achievement-hunting kids who find a game boring if they're not getting giant +50 points floating over the screen every few seconds (Modern Warfare), thereby making the community extremely mature. This is the only flaw I can think of with the game, if it can be considered a flaw at all. I was so excited when I finally got to fly the next best ship after waiting for the skills to train for a week. The time took longer, but the reward was extremely satisfying.

It is said that constant bombardment of small rewards desensitizes a person and causes them to become bored unless a larger reward comes along. EVE rewards the player far less frequently, but the rewards then feel extremely powerful. Different players will find this particular aspect of the game good or bad. It is up to the player, and I'm just reporting what I've experienced.

In my opinion, the game is one of the best MMO's available. It is also one of the oldest thriving MMO's in the market (2003). It's one year older than WoW, and it's one of the few MMO's that have an ever increasing player base.

The next few updates to the game brings one of the most powerful character creators ever put into a video game (youtube it), and it prepares all the players for the Incarna update that will allow players to walk around in all the spacestations to interact with other players outside their ships. This is similar to the scale of game change similar to when Spore was catching so much attention. The difference is that as an MMO, the idea of playing in one scale, then switching to another becomes far more feasible.

The other big news is the integration of the forthcoming MMOFPS Dust 514 (PS3, Xbox 360) with EVE. Dust 514 is an FPS that integrates directly into the EVE universe. The exact details are still rumors at this point, but the game is coming out in 2011.

If you are looking for a MMO, buy EVE just because it's heading in a direction of such massive advancement. Of course, if you like the gameplay and the idea of massive fleet battles (thousands of players), massive sandbox, etc, that's probably a good reason to buy the game too.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on February 12, 2011
This game has got a lot better now that they've done away with 'learning' skills in december. It now frees up what would have been 3 months of just training. Plus, in this edition you get the cerebral accelerator which will let you skill up real fast to fly awesome ships within a matter of weeks. The new character creator looks great too. Be mindful though of the faction, class, race and gender you pick.

Overall, great game, has a ton of depth. You can do just about anything in this game.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on August 26, 2011
Verified Purchase
The game has a high learning curve, but it the end its worth the time to play. SO buy it already.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on August 29, 2011
Verified Purchase
Eve online is a complicated space MMO and not for everyone. The COE is a good buy because you get 30 days plus the cerebral accelerator that speeds up skill training for the first thirty days. Get someone you know to send you a buddy invite so you get 21 days for the trial plus 30days for the activation code from the box and the person who sent you the invite will get 30days of game time as a GTC or PLEX code.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on April 9, 2011
Verified Purchase
the eve commisioned officer edition is good for ppl starting eve or ppl who have already an account and want to boost up to make the charcter aviable for some kind of purpose see industry/mining, if u have already 1 char with fighter skill and u want to boost up to have some extra fun or to dont get bored with the main account..

have fun and fly safe ;)
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6 of 9 people found the following review helpful
on November 15, 2011
Every once in a while I got tired of whatever game I was playing so I downloaded yet another trial of EVE Online. This was a ritual that went on for almost five years when I finally decided enough was enough.
The "Comissioned Officer Edition" had just been released and it was now time to jump off the proverbial fence and take the plunge into space. It was a big step, mind you.

It's not as easy as sitting yourself inside a space ship and go out to shoot pirates all day, oh-no, you have to slowly build up your economy by doing missions for various agents, you trade, you mine, mine some more and then maybe (just maybe!) you can afford an upgrade.
It would be unfair and unjust of me to say I've experienced everything EVE has to offer, that will probably never happen, but since it's a sandbox MMO with no real level progression it's more or less up to you what targets you set for yourself. What kind of career and life in Eden you want is unique for you and your choices. There are no "game rules" and people might help you but they might also chose to hurt you, so be careful about how you invest your time and energy into EVE Online.

Since this game has been around for seven years now there have been several expansion releases, free of charge, and not long ago one of them touched up on the graphics. If they were gorgeous before, now they're just ... well, breathtaking. Together with the eery soundtrack there is no doubt where you are and what you are doing.
Sometimes I could just stay in orbit around a station and admire the view as ships were docking or taking off into unknown destinations. It happened a few times that people would hail you, a brief hello, just before they jump into hyperspace and disappear from your radar forever. Eden really is a mindbogglingly huge universe and it really comes across like another universe rather than just a game.

I am a newbie in this vast universe. I am still trying to find my feet. The best way to do this is to do the initial tutorial, join a helpful Corporation, ask questions, read all resources you can find on the web and immerse yourself into the intricacy that is EVE Online. It takes effort and it takes time. I am hopeful about the rewards it will bring though, no matter how far into the future they may be, I am very hopeful.
I have heard of epic battlecruisers clashing, their fire blazing among the stars. I have seen the images of a thousand ships coming together in attack formation, ready to strike, ready to fight. One day I will be there too. One day I will have enough ISK currency to rule the markets and I might even have an entire zone dedicated to my exploits and adventures. Only time will tell, and I will need a lot of it...
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on December 16, 2013
I've been playing Eve Online on and off since it came out 9 years ago. It is definitely the most in depth game I've ever played and there's nothing out there quite like it. I saw a review were someone said that after 2 weeks it became repetitive. To that person I have to ask "HOW!!" In this game you can play many roles and over the many years, I've played, I've done quite a few. I've been an Explorer, a Miner, a Pirate, an Industrialist, a Spy, a Surveyor, a Freedom Fighter, a Trader, a Fleet Commander, a Salvager, a Scientist, a Bounty Hunter, a Planetary Industrialist, a Deep Space (Wormhole) Explorer, an Inventor, an Oppressor, an Engineer, and almost everything in between. Sure the learning curve is steep, but if you find a group of guys, which is easy to do on the Forums, there are always people to help you out with ANY aspect of the game you don't understand. Additionally there's "how to" guides everywhere and even calculators everywhere to help you with anything you're doing, from figuring out DPS (Damage Per Second) to figuring out your chance of Inventing a T2 Ship out of a Blueprint Copy. Google it and you'll find it!
I vaguely remember a Scene from Star Trek, where Picard found Kirk in some "Ribbon" of energy like Heaven. He said to him, something to the effect, "when you jump your horse over that fence, you don't feel that thrill, because you can't really get hurt". In EVE, you DEFINITELY feel that THRILL when you're in a battle and you know that if you lose, your ship that you spent hours customizing to be the perfect fighting machine will get torn from Stern to Stem and will be gone forever. There's no re-spawn, sure your insurance might come somewhat close to compensating you for your loss, and if you've previously purchased a good enough clone, you won't lose any of your hard earned skills, but you've got to set yourself up all over again, and your clone might be in a star system 100 Jumps away if you didn't plan accordingly. It's not like other games were someone creates a "Respawn Point" and you're magically there with all your armor, equipment and whatever. It's a HARSH game, but at the same time when you WIN, you REALLY feel like you've won! If you take another Corporation's (Eve Teams are Corps) Space Station, the Station is YOURS ... IF you can defend it at least. In Eve, they strive for a level of realism that makes you believe you're ACTUALLY part of the action. Even when you're in space and you look at the over 6000 stars in the sky, you can ACTUALLY plot a course and go and see ANY of those stars, along with the planets, moons and space stations they contain! You can even setup operations on planets and moons to harvest their resources in order to earn yourself in game ISK.
One final interesting thing about EVE is that ALL half million or so players, actually play on the same exact universe. There are no "Shards", "Instances" or any other tricks that other games use. Each Solar System or "Node" can handle up to 1500 players, and most solar systems don't have any more than 100 players in them (There's usually only 30 to 60K players on at any one time, between all 6000 Solar Systems). So if someone says, "I'm in the Torrino's Star System, in the Lai-Dai V Space Station" you can actually log in, go there and find that person.
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