Seeing as there have been a lot of people looking longingly at their skill queue these last 18 or so hours, I figure it’s a good time to post some thoughts on the training system. For a note to all of those talking about re-imbursements, Poetic does make a very good point about what to expect. Besides, you should all stop complaining, I was on a gate, engaged in a fight when the servers went offline… I doubt CCP is going to reimburse me for my soon to be inevitable loss! Because these downtime is not due to errors, I do wonder if CCP might take advantage and release Odyssey early, after all downtime is downtime right? Anyway, on with the original post.
The skill system, is harsh mistress to us capsulars. I can remember as a new player, how over whelming the skill sheet can be; so many skills which you don’t understand, so many ships you want to fly, and so many things your friends say you should train for. When you first start eve the skill queue is like a wall to climb, a barrier between you and the ship of your dreams. So you pick a target, set a straight line, and run for it. Forgetting all the nice to haves, and even some of what people tell you is essential, all go sit your ship quicker.
For me it was the Rokh. Even though back then, it was only able to field 4 missiles (I was a missile only Caldari like so many before me), I loved a tanky ship, and it doesn’t get much tankier than a Rokh. I didn’t care that with my skills it would have the DPS of a limp slap. I wanted to get one fast, and the skill queue set a strait path towards it. That’s what the skill queue is to a new player, something to rush up. And as you zoom towards your chosen role, you, as I did, miss things. T2 weapons aren’t essential are they? Who needs tech II drones of every race? Level 4 shield resists are high enough right? I can fit what I need with only minor fittings skills so sod em’.
Then you get the big things you want and the skill tree changes its nature a bit. You’ve hit the mid game and you start to look back, and you realise that the wall you have scaled isn’t actually complete. There are some pretty huge holes in it. But there are still goals upwards, still things on the horizon you want so bad. Capitals look amazing, and the other races would be cool, so you could fly in fleets with your alliance. So you keep climbing onwards towards the bigger goals, but now you take more care, and you don’t rush for ships like you used to. During this period, you might even go back and fill in some of the glaring holes in your wall, just because you have to justify some of the bigger more expensive ships you have or want.
Then, at last, you hit the big time, everything you really wanted is trained, all the races, all the T2’s and a few capitals of course. The skill queue changes its nature once more, it’s not a wall to be climbed, it’s a wall to be painted and patched. So far your rapid accent has left only a few upward strips, so it’s time to go back and fill the rest in. You double down and go back to getting the basics you guiltily knew you should have gotten during the first accent.
The final stage is what I am looking at crossing into now. All the holes are plugged, and the wall is looking pretty damn solid. All that I have left in front of me is decorating it will a little splash here and there. Sure there are a few ships left to unlock, but none which I can see me flying anytime soon. I’m having to start to think about capping off to level 5’s because there is just no new goals to train towards any more. I suspect I am going to have to set my own goals now, looking at ascertaining “perfect” tanking, or “perfect” gunnery, that’s going to be a long project though.
That’s not to say I am losing interest in the skill queue any more. Far from it, I have enjoyed every stage of the skill game so far, and I expect I will enjoy this next stage just as much. It’s just a sad passing for me now that nothing has that fresh ship feel any more. At this stage in the game the furthest I am from a ship (excluding titans, in which I have 0 interest) is around 60d and that’s just because I would need to train a lot of leadership skills prior to embarking. I’m missing BLOPs, but that’s 7d, I’m missing Marauders, but that’s 6d… even The last carrier I can’t fly is only 38d away (but that will reduce to 9d as of the 4th).
It’s kind of sad that there is no new ship class on the horizon for me, but really I wouldn’t trade my position for anything. There are still plenty of ships I have skilled and never flown, so I am content just enjoying the freedom of having the SP to do whatever I want.
But here is what this whole post comes down to. A message to newer players: I won’t give you the same advice that no doubt everyone around you has given since day one. I won’t tell you to train T2 before you go up a ship class, or to train fitting/core skills before rushing to battleships. I never followed it, and I suspect, nor will you. Here is what I will advise though. Enjoy the progression. Enjoy the rush of finally getting in a new ship, because that will dry up one day. Make sure you make the most of whatever part of the skill game you are in at the moment.
Fly like a bitter vet,