More than a lot of my other posts, this one will be written in a split style. RP and OOC . . . It is how my mind works, live with it.
Mike finished sending off the contract to Serpentine only to have the comm chime as if it was reacting to what he had just done. “Heyas” he drawled, opening the channel.
The silhouette that responded had a familiar voice. “I think we had a bit of a disconnect, Mr. Azariah. We sent you a Megathron to award.”
“Yup, just handed the ship out.”
“No, sir, you handed out a Megathron Navy issue . . . one of the flagship designs of the Gallente fleet.” The shock was apparent in the GBA backers voice.
“Yup, I been working for a while and kinda stacked up some favors so I called them in for this.”
“We will be unable to reimburse you the difference . . . and you awarded it as though WE had given it out.”
Mike nodded. “Yup. That is how it should be. Didn’t cost me much and it made the Gallente Benevolence Association look better . . . is that a problem?”
“no . . I just . . . um . . . no, thank you, I suppose.” The channel closed on a very confused shadow.
I asked a lot of folks about who their heroes were in this game and got a variety of answers and then I started to sort them and realized that there was not as much variety as I thought. A few names came up in both of my categories, which really says something about those players.
So one of the categories is the RL heroes of an online game. People who do so much for the meta game, from the outside that their value spills into the game itself. I asked vets and I asked relatively new players. I spent a fair amount if time reviewing my history in the game and what I have seen. Chribbas name came up a lot . . . for the file share and for what he does in game.
I asked Chribba who his hero was and he replied CCP RealX. Issler Dainze added Petur and John T. at CCP to the list when I asked him. Brett Macdonald said that he admired the blogging and external media that has built around the game. I would include programmers of the 3rd party apps in that list. Pyjama sam and Roc, Mechanoid Kryton and The Aideron programmer Marcel Devereux . I know I am missing names here but I am trying to keep to the people I had suggested to me.
She swayed into view as he closed the connection and sat on the other end of the couch. “He really doesn’t get it, does he?”
“Probably never will. He is the type who judges things by the balance at the bottom of the page.” Mike leaned back. “I wonder if he even has heroes?”
“Do you?” She looked at his profile as he leaned back and stared at the ceiling.
“Tons of them. Comes with meeting a lot of people, doing a lot of things. I find folks in each walk of life I wish I could be more like. Mechanoid Kryten, for instance. I have seen her fight to keep a corp alive, station herself in a gunnery slot of a POS to stand off wardecs and do all the dirty chores of a corp without a murmur of complaint. I know other pilots have the same admiration for their CEO’s and Directors”
He gestured at the screen that was advetrtising a new corp recruiting “Asking about, I was told of great FC’s, CEO’s who built something special whenever they set their hands to it. One person I spoke with mentioned Big Blue, another, Eve University. I have seen pilots form communities that thrived and others that never managed to get off of the ground.” He sighed.
“One of the cruel truths of heroics is that they are only considered special if they are successful. We remember the people who tried and won, forget those who took the same risks and failed. I think a big part of it is that few heroes set out to be what they eventually became. I was talking with Chribba and he said . . . ”
“Wait, Chribba, the guy who flies a Titan in hisec . . . that Chribba?”
“Yeah, though he has been making a try outside of hisec space and it kinda went south for a bit . . . ”
She rubbed her face. “You were . . .chatting with him?”
“And trading messages, yeah. How else am I going to find out what happened in 9UY? I asked him a set of questions over a couple of days and he answered, just like last time. Anyways this time he actually had to be told he was under attack. He jumped right in a ship to head over to . . .how did he say it?”
I set course for 9UY, to be there for some memories, also posted in the SBU thread thanking people for allowing me to run the system. The first FC was Obsidian Hawk, and the biggest alliances to join in was EVE University and NCDOT, all were pretty much on “my” side as everyone came to shoot the SBU’s – unsure if any of the actual aggressors were there trying to keep them safe.
“Ya see, he is so well known and liked and respected in the game that when folks take a poke at him a lot of power steps up to the plate to defend him. Eve University scrambled a fleet and warped a long way just to defend the man and his social experiment in 9UY.” He chuckled.
“So I figured I would take the time as to how he got started and whether he had set his golas to become this sort of icon early one.”
I didn’t really have any goals when I started at all, I was just looking for something that was like the old ‘Elite’ games. Everything else just grew over time and I am quite happy where I am today I don’t have any direct goals at the moment, I am pleased with what is going on and if something new happens to come up I will try go for that then, but right now I’m just enjoying the game and the community like I have all these years 🙂
“Ya see? He didn’t set out to become household name of New Eden, it just happened. Kinda the opposite of the other most well known name . . . The Mittani.”
“He’s not a hero.” She said making a face pulling her long legs up under herself.
“Not to you, maybe, but he has a devoted following amongst a very large alliance. He did manage to get elected to the CSM and somehow gets away with saying whatever he wants, proclaiming himself to be a sadistic bastard and there are still those who think he is the next best thing to sliced bread. The BIG difference is that he has bought into his own cult of personality to the point that I think he has become a caricature of himself. He was impressive, once, but now he hold a cartoon mask up where his face used to be. Sad, in a way, because it will be really hard for him to manage to ever take the mask off again.”
There is a fine line between heroes and villains. Some of the folks I talked to said they admired the ‘bad guys’ of Eve and had a problem thinking of many good guys who were famous. There are small ‘h’ heroes but not Heroes.
In lieu of Heroes we get celebrities. Them we have. The Bad Bobby‘s and Istvaan Shogaatsu‘s. Quite a few people I asked mentioned pilots who could melt the faces off of an opposing force . . . but they weren’t heroes. Just celebrities. In an earlier post the same point was made about villains sometimes can be admirable, but that does not make them Heroes, just admired.
“Your enemy is never a villain in his own eyes. Keep this in mind; it may offer a way to make him your friend. If not, you can kill him without hate — and quickly.”
Robert A. Heinlein
Just because someone is playing with a different set of goals or a different play style does not mean you cannot hold admiration for their accomplishments. They are playing their game and I suppose, somewhere deep down they are heroic in their own right. I have trouble imagining someone who was working and not feeling that something was accomplished. In that direction lies burnout.
Is that it? As long as we feel something is happening then we keep playing. Since Eve is so player driven the something happening lasts far longer than a lot of other games where level cap is reachable and then what? Raids?
“Who else?” She leaned forward a little and he almost lost his train of thought.
“Well, entertainers are not Heroes but there are the folks that make a stand knowing it is not going to go well for them. Fleets have a term ‘Hero Tackle’ and that pilot usually knows that he has a limited life expectancy. Biggest Hero I have seen flying was a while back but it still sticks in my memory. Divya was flying a jamming Scorpion and the fleet got overrun. She jammed the enemy ships long enough for everybody else to get clear. Her ship didn’t make it. I have NEVER heard a fleet respond with such raw admiration as that day.” He sighed.
“But then there are the folks like Bleys who try to raise the game for people around them. Like Chainer” He watched her tense. “His name, not his profession. He and Garheade built Project Halibut which is a great starting place AND a place for Vets to also visit and chat. Kirith, who has given up two Capital ships to be a focal events. The early leaders of the incursion response fleets like Hardin. People who design fittings to the level that all other ships are compared to their designs like Wensley or Garmin. The Renaissance Man, Roc Wieler. The list could go on and on . . . some of the pilots have retired or cut way waaaaay back but still could rally others in a moment with the power of their names and reputations. Pilots like Mynxee.”
He shook his head. “Problem is I only know a small corner of New Eden. There are pilots out there who don’t speak my language and probably have their own heroes whom I have never heard of. That does not lessen their heroics, just indicates my ignorance.”
He paused and turned to look her square in the eye. “When push comes to shove, you are also one of my heroes. You cannot tell me you do what you do for the isk. You do it because you care, because you are damn good at it, and because it needs to be done. That is a pretty good description of a hero to me.”
She sat, stunned for a moment. “Me?” the word was whispered.
And you, pilot. I cannot imagine anybody NOT playing Eve reads this. Are you a hero of your own story? Are you a loyal sidekick? This broadly connects to the recent blog banter discussing immersion but I am not asking how involved you are in the game but how much the game involves you. Very Kennedy, eh?
Congratulations to Serpentine Logic, he got the Megathron (Navy issue, contrary to the GBAs intent)
fly it like you won it