So I’ve been trying to decide whether to keep my pre-Apocrypha trial character or my post-Apocrypha one.
First things first: While most of the Apoc NPE changes were outstanding, overall it was a step backwards. Putting the three tutorial mission arcs in one place was a good move for players to really have a chance to get their feet under them, as was the remaps, and extending characters free skill books for basic skills by completing tutorials. Even changing the character background choices to have no impact was good because it opens up the RP possibilities as your race and ancestry no long determine your particular attribute line up (Or at least, they did not for my new character, who started even across the board with 8’s and 9’s). All of these were understandable.
What was not understandable was rolling back the starting skill count. The offered reason was to help players ease into the game by giving them a less bewildering array of starting skills. Of course the Dev announcing this fumbled by making a joke about not needing skill X since it was for action Y that only advanced players needed, only to have that do a 180 into his face like a Little Leaguer spitting Big League Chew upwind out the cheese wagon window on the highway. Because skill X was in fact, not at all tied to action Y. Strike 1, CCP!
Then CCP offers up that the drop in skills will be countered by a special speed boost that will allow skills to be trained at double speed until 1.6m SP. Players point out that this is still slower than starting noobs with some basic learning skills to cut time down, as they had been doing before. Strike 2, CCP.
Fawning fanboys quickly pull out their EVE calculators, and note that within certain parameters, players in both the old and new NPE will hit 1.6m SP within roughly the same time period. CCP Devs rejoice that they have been bailed out, while astute players notice that CCP, who should have had that calculated from the get go, clearly had no idea that this was the case. Strike 3…you’re out!
The bottom line is that this was not done for new players coming into the game. I know this because I am that target audience, and it hindered my game experience! Want to be Caldari? Better learn the market early, because you will have a missle frigate, and guess what is not included in your 200k 50k(!) SP start up kit. Want to be Gallente? Better learng the market early, because every ship you get will rely in part on drone warfare, and guess what is not included in your 200k 50k(!) SP start up kit. Even more ridiculous? The new tutorials, which supposedly hand out skill books to help make up that huge SP difference to start with, do not give out skill books for either of the above skills! In fact, to even do the drone tutorial, one must first purchase the related skills and drones, fit them out, and only then can you even attempt the tutorial!
So its pretty clear that these chances were not meant for new players, or that if they were, the mark was missed. Instead, it seems clear that CCP was addressing a different problem, as several other players pointed out: making alts and alt hopping less of a viable option by crippling these characters out of the gate.
What disease is it that makes game developers lie when they should tell the truth, and tell the truth when they should lie?
It’s like watching Roger Clemens desperately try to deny his steroid use – sometimes funny, sometimes angering, and mostly just downright sad.
So anyway, long story short, I can have a character with:
A) 950k SP (including 4 learning skills at 3+, and 2 skills at 5), 1.2m ISK, and 1 remap.
B) 420k SP (including no learning skills, and no skills at 5), 5.6m ISK, and 2 remaps.
(Remember, they both have the 2x speed skill multiplier, since they are both under 1.6m SP. And remember too, if I want anything other than balanced skills, I have to use 1 remap immediately on character B).
I’m leaning towards A pretty heavily, especially if I can find someone to hold the ISK on B before my trial time ends in 4 days or so…and even if I can’t, I still have 2 tutorial arcs on A, which is another 2+m ISK easy.
Pinch hitter time, which do you choose?