So sitting in the Help channel one of the ISD’s links a page of the ‘Golden Rules of Eve’. Yeah, I don’t read that language but it is attributed to an older post by Akita T. Instead I let Google translate do its thing . . . took it, let it rattle about in my head and this spilled out.
“No,” Mike said to the seminar he had agreed to run, “I am not sure there is ever an absolute ‘right’ way to do something but there are guidelines that you should at least know about.”
“Just guidelines?” One of the prospective pilots asked.
“Yup, because each and every one of you, if you are to be successful will break more than a few of them at one point or another. Forget some and groan when the lesson is hammered home. Guidelines help you along, help you adjust but you should never, ever, consider them to be written in stone. Got it?” He looked about making eye contact with a few of the student and waited for some nods.
Ok, first . . . Yer gonna lose stuff. So do not put all your eggs in one basket, all your savings in one ship. Or if you do? Be ready to start from the ground up without whining or complaint. To quote someone better than myself?”
If you can make one heap of all your winnings
And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
And lose, and start again at your beginnings
And never breathe a word about your loss;
Now some folks put it as ‘Never undock in what you cannot replace’. But when you are starting out? you may not have that luxury. So try not to or be ready to face the loss when it comes. Some cannot and retire from flying before they ever truly flew. Sad.”
“Have you done that?”
Mike sighed. “Yup, been rich then been broke. Worst was the loss of a ship and then the loss of more trying to get to the wreckage of the first. Took me a while to bounce back. But I did. I had to.” He looked off in the distance remembering a Machariel and winced just a bit.
He took a breath and continued. “Second? People are gonna shoot at you, whether you like it or not. There is no safe space. Your good intentions make for shit armor and shields. Faster you understand that both predator and prey are involved in the kill the better you will adjust to space.”
“But I thought if I mined in hisec. . . . ” asked one.
“Still get shot”
“I won’t, just hauling cargo, low end, not worth . . . ” started another
“Still get shot.”
“I’ll fly with friends and make our own corpor . . . ” A third offered
Mike grinned. “Better. You will get wardecced . . . then get shot.”
“So how do we stop them?”
Mike grinned. You don’t. You just make it tougher so only the really dedicated will shoot and they my decide to go for more obvious weaker targets. Weakness draws them like blood in the water draws sharks. Fly prepared, fly smart . . .you will still get shot, just less often.” He grinned. “And try to always be ready to shoot back.
“Thirdly. Scams happen, people WILL try to fool you, rob you, trick and deceive you. The old adage of ‘If it looks too good to be true? It probably is. Applies in spades.”
“But I have heard about your Bus . . . ” One asked quietly.
“Yup, confusing as hell because I have all the earmarks of a scam. An outrageous offer of a free fitted ship and I say there are no strings attached. The bounty on my head makes me look questionable as well. I am not scamming but people dealing with me should read carefully and check just the same. This is why I only deal in Career systems . . . scamming is heavily discouraged there.”
“So why do you do it?”
Mike grinned. “Because for all the talk of trust nobody? That would be a very bad way to go through life. You have to be willing to take a chance, to talk and maybe even put your hand in the lions mouth. Sure, there will be loss, but we already covered that. Sure you will be fooled now and again . . . but to live in space alone? Far worse. Part of what I do is teach that trust can happen, just proceed with caution.” He took a sip of coffee and leaned back. “After all, you guys are trusting me to tell you the truth and point you in the right direction? But did any of you check to see if I even have a clue about what I am talking about? Or did you take me at face value and trust I would not steer you wrong?” He laughed at the confused expressions on their faces.
“Where was I? Ah yeah, fourth . . . the most important skills are not those bought and paid for from some academy. Assuming some pilots history SAYS that he has only three days in space can be deceptive as all hell, especially these days with Skill Injectors. But this was true, even before then. Some folks have innate skills that are not taught but they have them, just the same. They may not be able to fire the gun well but far better than you at making the critical decisions that decide a battle. I always LOOK at the age of a pilot but I do not let that mean I discount a young one.
The other side of that coin is that YOU will grow as a pilot, if you try and learn to. Do not rush this like it was some sort of game. Grow your skills and your experience. Become more than the sum of your ‘education’.”
He looked around and KNEW that one went right over their heads as would the next. “This leads us to the fifth, Bigger is not always better. I have seen pilots rush to get into Battleships and then fit them with small guns because they could not use the large. I have heard pilots fresh out of the Academies ask what the fastest way into a Titan was. For one or two of you? Maybe supercaps will be the right end goal. Others of you will realize that your love is for a smaller class.”
Mike looked up at the ceiling in the direction of the hangers and smiled. “I can fly a lot of ships and I use what is needed for the task before me but I do always seem to come back to the Destroyers. They just make me . . . joyful to fly. So if you are always chasing the next hull, the next class? That is fine . . . I did that. Just keep looking around and back and find your joyful ship, the activity that makes you happy and remember to remember.”
“Six. The most powerful weapon/tool is information. I cannot stress this enough. LOOK at the damn things you are using and KNOW why you chose them over some close version. Compare. Do your reading and do the same for people. Every bit of knowledge helps form your decisions, prepares you for what is to come. IF you want it? It can be found and it is often the advantage that makes the difference in a fight.
Which brings me to seven. Fair fight. More mythical than Unicorns. If a fight is fair it means you BOTH screwed up. If it is a battle then fight to win. If it is a game then play by the rules you set for yourself but you can never be sure the otherside is more interested in winning than in fairness. Look back through the history of the ‘fair’ contests of Alliance tournaments in the past. The organizers try to make it fair and then some competitors do everything in their power to subvert that and get any advantage they can. Never cry because it was not fair. Ever. Most pilots will only laugh at you.”
He sighed. “Oh some of us try to be fair and have our own codes of honour and such. I am laughed at, often. But the unfairness is of my own choice and the stumbling blocks I set for myself? Well they make winning that much more sweet.”
Both his hands hit the table with a loud slap, the students jumped. “Brings me to the last thing for today. You will lose. Fights, battles, wars, ships, assets, and sometimes you mind and will to keep going. Accept that and keep going anyway. Learn from your loss. Make the loss a fee you paid for a hard earned lesson. Or quit.”
He looked around the room and his voice dropped to nearly a whisper.
“But don’t quit learning.”
Hell this whole post is one lesson. Mine is that I enjoy reading old stuff and modifying it into my own framework of experience and needs.
Been a while since I did a draw. Since I have that love for destroyers? I will give out a trio of T3 Destroyers, enter in the comments by naming the one you DON’T want.
fly it like you won it