Tuesday, January 5, 2016

2015 in EVE was an Amazing Year

2015 will go down as one of my favorite years in EVE. Hopefully not the last!

2011-2013 were my “training wheel” years in EVE, playing primarily with RVB, living nomadically in low sec on an alt, and just trying to learn the basics of survival and PVP in this insanely complicated and competitive game.

In 2014 the training wheels came off, and I focused on low sec solo PVP in frigate and destroyer class ships.

In 2015, I finally moved on to null sec and wormhole PVP, and I spent most of the year following the large, neutral groups around null looking for solo PVP opportunities. In 2015 I also started actively using (and losing) ships bigger than the frigate/destroyer classes.

At the end of 2014 and start of 2015, I moved to null sec for the first time ever. I lived in Curse, during the time when Brave swarmed throughout Catch, and through “The Siege of GE-8JV.” While some recall March of 2015 as the month that Brave began to implode, some/many players look back on the siege of GE- as one of the funnest periods in the game. Basically everyone and every playstyle was bottled up in one region for a few months, and there was little reason to go anywhere else. Everything from capital fights, kitchen sink fleets, small gangs, and dozens of solo pvp fights was going on at the same time seemingly without end.

The Siege of GE-
It certainly was one of the best times in EVE Online for me, and that month remains not only my most active period ever playing EVE (with 350+ kills mostly solo) but also the time when I really started to understand and enjoy null sec PVP.

As a result of those early months fighting in Catch, I've stuck with null sec PVP throughout 2015 except for a few breaks to PVP in wormholes. I fought Horde when they lived in Cloud Ring (aka, “content ring”) and used Thera to PVP everywhere from Omist to TEST/PFR space in the east. After a break during the late summer I've come back to solo PVP with a lot of renewed energy and am having a blast fighting NARM, Brave, Horde, and everyone else in the Querious thunderdome. And probably more this year than ever, I've spent a lot of time watching people on twitch. Said Caid, Mr Hyde, Prom, Suitonia—the list goes on of amazing solo PVPers who stream some amazing content on twitch/youtube.

My overall impression of the the state of solo—one that many others share so far as I've read and discussed—is that solo pvp has become harder to find in 2015, compared with years previous. This is partly due to some poor balancing by CCP, but perhaps also due to the lower activity levels in the game as a whole.

For some, that has led them to try other forms of game play—or other games. For others (like me), solo pvp remains rewarding enough to be a primary playstlye.

The Rifter has never looked so good, with the addition of ship damage

2015 left me with 2118 more kills, 128 losses; with around 73b isk destroyed (mostly solo), and around 4.7b lost. Going into 2016, I am comfortable PVPing in every type of space. I plan to continue to flying in bigger and more expensive ships and work toward that goal of PVPing in everything that flies, so I expect I will lose a lot more isk in this upcoming year. But, I don't know where I will fly. NS? LS? Wormholes? Probably a mixture of all three, following activity levels and conflicts.

In terms of non-PVP goals, I have now explored 80% of high security space, with only 3 regions remaining to cover. In 2015 I tested what a solo player can do in game, taking POCOs for myself and destroying inactive POSes around high sec, accumulating almost 50b isk in loot from blueprint and material drops. My "systems visited" map is slowly getting painted in:

I still prefer the old map but the new one's aesthetics is growing on me
In 2016 I expect to finish exploring all of HS, and probably most of LS as well, and I am sure I will snag a few more inactive POSes along the way.

On the year, isk from trade total over 150b, which isn't bad given my almost complete inactivity with trading in the summer.

Ending the year on an uptick in trading profit

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