Monday, January 18, 2016

Tarnished Amarrian Silverware

I tend to invest quite far ahead into the future in games - sometimes ludicrously far ahead.

I've been out of EVE-Online for five or six years, aeons in game terms. I came back to sift through my scattered wealth accumulated in days of yore which most current players would deem pre-historic. My dusty fleets of now ever so slightly outdated ships and equipment lay unmolested even after all this time in hangars scattered through the game map. Though able to bring my best spaceships up to speed with only a bit of modernization I soon blew through my cash getting my character caught up and found myself seemingly destitute, only a couple million credits to my name. (A good ship takes a couple hundred million - great ships several times more.)

Woe is me. Oh, woe is Wolfie!
Oh, wait. EVE's best point is its market system and I'd invested pretty heavily in spaceship components before quitting. I may not possess a great deal of liquidity but I had hangars full of half-researched blueprints and large orders of parts already built, still dangling off the end of some assembly line. I soon discovered that while my wallet admits a hearty breeze, I find myself quite well-to-do in terms of property. My largest pile of spaceship components by itself turned out to be worth a cool billion. Nothing galaxy-shaking, but still not bad for an old-timer.

Except you gotta be able to move the damn merchandise, and the problem with my long-term investment is that it's going to take almost as long a term to divest myself of it. As it turns out, I'd built enough of that particular part to outfit three hundred medium-sized ships. The listing of available quantities for this particular product at my local trade hub looks something like this:
That's right. That's me shaded in blue. Even after a few sales I amount to almost half the regional market - and that's just part of the stack, having split off more of it to the big city where the big sharks selling ten times that much undercut everyone. Still, I am the Southwest king of windshield wipers baby!
Except people don't need that many windshield wipers.

At this point, permit me a slight divergence into the topic of EVE's playable races and their personalities. There are four major ones, not true races as in other RPGs but merely different human cultures. You've got the greedy militaristic corporatist macho cut-throat bad boys, then the token "good" race of freedom-loving beatniks, and third, the token tribal bad-ass rebels. While chaotic archetypes always draw me to some extent, I instead opted for the fourth choice when creating my character twelve years ago, the Amarrians, a slave-driving ironfisted theocratic interstellar empire:

"True Amarrians are proud and supercilious, with a great sense of tradition and ancestry. They are considered arrogant and tyrannical by most others."

Aside from being religious, Amarr lore fit me so well that on being kicked out of one corporation for my abrasive personality I was told something to the effect of "at first we just thought you were really good at roleplaying an Amarrian!"

So here I am. I find myself an old-money aristocrat, a snooty relic from the mists of time dredged up after half of EVE's history, returning to a crumbling estate. A destitute noble in antique garb not knowing where my next meal will come from yet sitting on a pile of historic property with no immediate financial use, what else could I have been other than Amarrian! I can make long-term plans but hot damn, even I couldn't have planned such a gimmick.

Maybe I should just open my hangar to tourists. Worked for the English nobility.

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