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Friday, October 3, 2008

Harsh Lessons Learned


In addition to playing World of Warcraft, I also spend a good bit of my time playing EVE Online.  Today, I spent 3,400,000isk (isk is the EVE in game currency) on a new ship.  A cruiser called a Stabber.

I was exceptionally happy to have purchased this new ship.  While 3.4 million isk may not be a lot of money for some people, for me it was the majority of what I had.  After purchasing the new cruiser and finally deciding on a name for it, I flew off to pick up by brand new Stabber.  In case you are curious, I named it Sagittarii because it kind of reminds me of an arrow; all of my ships are named after types of Roman Legions (Numerii, Socii, Triarii, Hastati). 

All of this was done while I was at work.  That was probably the most important part of this, so I will repeat it.  All of this was done while I was at work. 

Since my primary vocation in EVE is that of Entrepreneur, I am able to see and purchase items from all over the region I am currently in.  For the most part, my "theater of operations" has been within the Metropolis region.  I bought everything I wanted at the cheapest possible prices being offered, set numerous waypoints, undocked, and headed off to pick up all of my wonderful new equipment.

Since this was all being done on my laptop, and it will not handle the premium graphics content, I decided I would get some nice screenshots when I got home and ran one of my desktop PCs with their much nicer graphics cards.  I did grab the shot at the top first, though, because it showed the insane route I was now going to undertake to collect all of my equipment.  28 waypoints in total, some taking me through low sec areas.  As I stated earlier, I generally spend most of my time in the Metropolis region.  If you have ever been in low sec in Metropolis, it is really not much different from high sec.  There isn't much of anything going on.  Unfortunately, I did not notice that my travels would be carrying me into The Forge, a slightly busier region.

The majority of the time that I had my autopilot running, I was alt-tabbed out doing work.  Whenever I would hear my ships computer telling me that my waypoint had been reached, I would jump back over to EVE, dock at the station, grab my items, undock, and hit the autopilot again.

When I started getting into low sec space, I though it might be a good idea to just dock my ship, stop playing for the time being, and wait until I got home to finish what I was doing.  I had a lot of applications open, our network is crap, and I knew it would be the safest thing to do since if I got involved in something bad, I would not be able to get out of it.  Throwing all caution to the wind, I decided to just finish out my last 8 jumps and get the last item, stay docked in that station, and then play with my new ship when I got home.  Was that ever a bad idea.

I cannot remember the name of the system I jumped into, but I still had the autopilot going.  When you are flying on autopilot, your ship will not warp all the way to next stargate.  You end up a couple thousand meters 15km away and fly to the stargate before getting close enough to make the jump.  I should have taken it off autopilot, and started warping to 0m so I could jump immediately and stay safe.  Still being on autopilot, though, I end up far away from the stargate.  In my overview, I suddenly see an entire screen of red, hostile ships.  They open fire, my PC cannot handle it, and, less than 2 hours after making the purchase, my brand new Stabber is destroyed.  I almost cried.

I have learned my lesson, though, and that is the most important thing.  No more afk autopiloting through low sec systems.  EVE is all about risk, and unless you are wiling to lose whatever you have in space, you need to always be vigilant.

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