Welcome to the twenty-fourth installment of the EVE Blog Banter, the monthly EVE Online blogging extravaganza created by CrazyKinux. The EVE Blog Banter involves an enthusiastic group of gaming bloggers, a common topic within the realm of EVE Online, and a week or so to post articles pertaining to the said topic. The resulting articles can either be short or quite extensive, either funny or dead serious, but are always a great fun to read! Any questions about the EVE Blog Banter should be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org. Check for other EVE Blog Banter articles at the bottom of this post!
This month's Banter topic comes to us from the ever helpful Eelis Kiy, capsuleer behind the "Where the frack is my ship" blog. She asks: How does your real life personality compare to who you are as a character in EVE? Does a good leader of people in the real world make a good leader of pilots in game? Or vice-versa? Do your real-life skills help you with the roles you fulfill in your corporation or alliance? Or do you behave completely differently? Does the anonymity of the Internet allow you to thrive on the tears of others in New Eden whilst you work as a good Samaritan away from your keyboard? Or are you as mean outside of your pod as you are inside it? Have experiences in EVE Online affected your behavior, skills or attitudes outside of the game?
Those are some interesting questions. I don't think it's as much of an issue for me as it may be for some people because I don't get into RP with EVE. I know some people really get into it, and that's fine. I've played many tabletop roleplaying games, and it's a hobby I enjoy. I've just never felt the need to roleplay in a video game. To me, they're very different things, and after roleplaying with real flesh-and-blood people, I would find roleplaying in an MMO a poor substitute.
That said, I suppose I do have something of a persona in EVE. The matter is further complicated by the fact that I have multiple characters, and I play them all differently. For the purpose of this discussion, I'll talk about two of my characters--my "main" who lives in a wormhole, and my pvp character.
I'd say my main character is pretty much like me in real life in most respects. I'm helpful to people. I don't lie, don't cheat. I'm an "honorable guy." A big part of this is because it's my main character, the toon I'm known for (or someday will be), and so I want that character to be a good representation of who I am as a person. That doesn't mean I won't shoot you in a pvp situation. But I won't lie or be dishonorable. If I give you a ransom, I'll honor it (and I have).
My pvp character is different. I don't really care how people perceive that character. I still intend to honor ransoms, just because it defeats the purpose of having a ransom if you don't honor it. And I doubt I'd ever do any kind of hostile corp takeovers with that character. I personally believe stealing from a corp or anyone who trusts you is a cowardly and disgusting act, and says a lot about the person who does it, whether in a game or real life (and it doesn't say anything good in my book). But my pvp character will have a lot more latitude when it comes to pvp actions. He just won't be a total scumbag.
As to the topic of leadership, a leader is a leader--it doesn't matter the arena. What I mean by that is if you're a good leader, you'll be a good leader in anything you do, whether in real life or in EVE. Being a leader encompasses certain personality traits. Either you have them (or can learn them) or you don't. If you're not a good leader in life, you won't be in EVE and vice versa.
As to the supposed "anonymity" of the internet, I think that is a thing of the past. You're not anonymous on the internet. You're not anonymous on EVE. If you're a scumbag, word will get out. The only way you could completely avoid the consequences of your actions is to keep making new characters, and where's the fun in that? I suppose you could have one character you're "nice" with and one you're a scumbag with, sort of like my example only more extreme. However, if you're a scumbag for real, then you're eventually going to show others your true colors with your "nice" character whether you mean to or not. Now whether or not those around will be paying attention enough to notice is another matter.
Author's note: The word scumbag, as used in this post, could be replaced with the word douche-bag, or pretty much any other derogatory term you prefer which refers to someone with little to no moral character. I used the word scumbag because that's what that word means to me, whereas douche-bag has more the connotation (to me) of someone who's an ass at least partly because they're a dumbass. Scum-bags can be smart (in their own fucked up way), but douche-bags are oftentimes morons.
Fly smart, and shoot down scumbags and douche-bags with extreme prejudice.