Fresh Blood

Having convinced a fellow friend to delve into the void I anticipate a tasty mortal for the grinder. My plan for this noob is a baptism of fire. He rarely relies on the sweeter things in life and would appreciate having his head kicked in online for the kicks, obviously.

His introduction had barely begun and already he's lost a ship, his learning curve hitting him as a wall. En-route to the badlands we ran into a posse of pirates keen to introduce our flesh to the frozen wastes of deep space. But this eventuality was a given result, our pathetic frigates already stripped of valuables and ready to implode at a moments notice. The pirates were well versed in violence, both of us locked down and immediately set upon with an eager ferocity, barely lasting the moments notice.

It's odd to be upon the receiving end so decisively - it reminds me of simpler times when everywhere was hazardous and paranoia plagued my decisions. I plan to note exactly whomever we encounter, their abilities judged so that we may soon both earn entry via a noob's skill set, into a pirate corporation of careful choosing.

So with this new mandate comes the inevitable dive to -9.9 and it's consequences. My planetary harvesting operation is on hold and besides, the admin was damn dull. And with it's income now paused I'll have to revert to hunting in 0.0, my noob towing the line as bait. Prospectively I'm looking forward to rewinding myself a few years and again revelling in the order of destruction. So much of me was created through pain that it seems only natural.

Happy hunting, us.

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The Planets

A mere 15 weeks in and, finally I maintain enough online presence to post! I'd grovel for my absence but I'm too tired. Currently I crave adult intervention and conversation but as it is I live through the eyes of an infant. Fun is found in ordinary occurrences whilst all the while I serve needs as best I can muster.

But I'm also responsible for the crafting of an individual's mind and the opportunity to re-instate all I am.

So, first we must learn the planets. The old school killing can come later. Much later.

Space Engine 0.95

Imagine for a moment that every star seen in New Edens backdrops to be an actual star system, each with a system of planets, moons, asteroids, whatever. Now using the 'g' key it's possible to travel to any point within the known universe thanks not only to imagination, but also Space Engine.


The way this staggering volume is achieved is by using procedurally generated elements which combine to create a vast network of intricate detail, on a scale not seen since Pioneer Space Sim (Frontier remake). So there's nothing new about this approach to design, many worlds use purely mathematically created constructs.

But New Eden appears devoid of such ambitions despite being the perfect candidate. Perhaps I'm faithless and should allow myself to accept the way things are. But the more I wander the space lanes I find the environments too contrived and don't betray expectations often. Using maths; natural variation occurs creating surprising results.

Link these effects to environmental damage models and New Eden suddenly becomes a reassuringly dangerous place. Lurking too close to a star causes shield damage, corrosive gases eat away at the hulls of ships. And combinations of environments produce legendary pockets of local survivalists; harsh temperatures forcing ships to compensate their fittings to cope.

Much of EvE Online is man-made. It persistently disregards the wonders surrounding us, which I feel is a shame as, with all things in this world, nature designs in the most creative of ways making all of this possible.

That is simply inspiring.

Related Links
Space Engine 0.95 (official website)

The 7 Year Itch


It may have been noted that New Eden has not provided the same lure as it one did. Many moons ago I was the one who'd be online throughout maintaining the malevolent presence within the void.

But after 7 years one would expect this commitment to wane somewhat, but for me, any idea that EvE Online is wearing thin is blasphemous. With so many RL adventures arriving at my door lately it's no surprise I've been distracted for a short time, but these  periods of abstention only serve to reinforce my addiction of fiery fury.

With the completion of Fanfest2012 and several demonstrations of intentions, it's clear that to abandon this gratuitous galaxy now would be a serious oversight on my part as to the strengths of CCP's IP, and the ambition they display when attempting to covet new technology and convince us; this is the future. I do trust their judgement, most of the time and I must admit their prospects are promising.

One of the greatest collaborations to date must be with Nvidia as this following video demonstrates. They have some grand plans for our viewing pleasure and may, in some unintentional ways, improve upon the sub flight mechanics and pocket sized belts we endure.


I'm in for the long haul, indeed I have contemplated my assets in a decade. When the Dust has settled and CoD fanboys play fodder to our whims we will be almighty gods, we will command the respect of a growing collective consciousness within New Eden and beyond.

So right here, right now I remain silently cloaked, finger itching...

Happy hunting.

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T3 Shuttle

My apologies for the aparent lack of posting. My reasons for abstaining are valid: I welcomed the latest addition to my family on 27th March, a baby girl. My wife managed to win the battle of the names, my choice; Eve was supplanted by Eady. So be it.

With my trigger finger itching profusely I am now back in the fray, piracy and pillaging the main event. But it would appear that in my absence CCP has noted my post; Slots for Shuttles, and is working to release the T3 Shuttle. Due on April 1st, clearly a grand addition to our burgeoning arsenal of ass-kickers. Smashing!


Related Link
Slots for Shuttles

Kerbal Space Program Mods

My attempts to assist the fearless bog-eyed Kerbals conquer their local moon has been fraught with failure. As only a clutch of equipment has been available for fitting initially (several engines, boosters, fuel tanks and SAS modules) designing a vehicle to travel the vast distance from Kerbal to Mun has been an entertaining yet steep curve.

To my delight I recently discovered a plethora of mods the growing committed community has kindly released expanding the choice massively, creating solutions to many of the problems typically encountered. But even so the technicalities involved in achieving escape velocity from Kerbal to the Mun has stubbornly refused to yield; even after scores of hours and many spectacular catastrophies. Despite the tendency for fiery fury I persisted and finally achieved the goal – but my attempts to return failed when their POD parachute failed and detached only 1km from the surface of their home planet.

Despite the mishap I have vowed to return with another three brave green souls, changing only the chute in my design for a triple featured device with more drag capability courtesy of the modders.



What’s interesting is that; as the game develops and more features become available KSP's unwittingly simulating the development of a space program – in real time. Release v0.143 allows persistence; recording every single vehicle part either landed, in orbit or detached during all flights, so long as the flight doesn’t end or remains in orbit; already my orbital pathways are crowding with debris. I'm using this feature to lift several modules into orbit and on to the Mun for the construction of a moon-base. I’m hopeful that in time the addition of further locations will be become available such as distant planets, comets and asteroids. The sky is literally the limit.

As a sandbox it’s unsurpassed in its simple complexity and poses a true challenge from which it’s difficult to shy from. It’s the spiritual prequel to EvE Online; bugged yet brilliant, and highly recommended.

Happy designing, launching, exploding, retrying...

Related Links
Kerbal Space Program (official website)

Fee Free

PLEX’s are the vehicle with which a lowly pilot can frolic in the quantum foam for free, no real fee required except for the millions of iskiez required to purchase PLEX. I'll concede that the idea of clerical grinding; speculation, acquisition, invention and harvesting maybe a tad tedious, but it means that I'll continue to roam unhindered by external financial constraints.

I've discovered that planetary pillaging has been able to contribute 50% of the required funds for a 30 day PLEX; the rest coming from the slow sale of alt mining stores and appropriated items as well as the odd rare ransom. With elite level skills I’m able to control 6 separate planetary colonies, 4 harvesting and 2 manufacturing. To harvest enough materials to allow the factories to constantly manufacture POS fuel I must visit each site every 48 hours. My alt is under orders to install the same infrastructure halving the requirement to attend, yet requiring 40 days training. A direct consequence of this commitment is that I must initiate roams from my local system, but until there’s planetary assault capability I’m not concerned.

With this continued consistent commitment I can roam the void without the need for considering financial burdens, which is a welcomed perk. There are many different ways to achieve this perpetual existence; for me the regularity of planetary harvesting is good for my attendance and ensures that my time within the void continues regardless of personal financial issues, so long as I can earn the required isk in time…

Happy (isk) hunting…

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Clear Skies Trilogy

Some months ago Clear Skies reached it's third outing, not because there's money to be made - it's simply for the awe that is EvE Online and of course it's fanatical populace.


If the previous incarnations of these marvellous movies escaped you then I strongly recommend your time to view them. They are so well produced, not only from a technical point-of-view, but indeed the acting and script is well executed and never ceases to crease a smile on my otherwise gnarly face. I'm a real fan of this production and can safely advocate the series as some of my favourite films despite the apparent minuscule budget. Absolutely brilliant!

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Related Links

I-War

Many retro games appeal to many of the middle aged masses because they recapture a feeling of youth in the player. Often these games cannot compete with our modern equivalents, and only appeal specifically to the individual because of their power of nostalgia. Unfortunately I missed I-War the first time round, a PC capable of playing was not in my itinerary but despite this, the strengths this game has over me has demanded that I play consistently and often.

The first few missions are tutorials and are absolutely necessary to understand the mechanics of the craft(dreadnaught) you'll command. Much like a traditional ship, the vessel has several seats upon the bridge: Command,   tactical, navigation and engineering are all present and each position has it's own set of commands, although all commands can be accessed from any seat.

The game play is understated at first, demanding little in the way of tactical resolve, but later missions become increasingly difficult, requiring lateral thinking, spacial awareness and a quick trigger. The ship can be manoeuvred in any direction, and can rotate to engage multiple targets, systems can become damaged during combat forcing a compromise and many missions utilise the games physics model for success. This dynamic is what makes the vessel so rewarding to command, and the radio chatter never ceases enhancing the atmosphere further.


Graphically the game is exceptional(for its time), the mechanics; more accomplished than New Edens' with both inertia and gravity present. Critically I-war was praised and it was enough a success to warrant an update and a sequel; I-War 2 Edge of Chaos, which again was well received. The development team; Particle Systems was later acquired by Argonaut which went into administration in 2004.

A game of notable complexity, difficulty and a raft of original ideas, the game is as timeless as the void itself.

Related Links