Sin City

Almost two weeks ago, the fourth EVE Vegas event took place. This year’s gathering saw over five hundred players from all over the globe, and all walks of life within EVE, attend presentations and roundtables over two days. Of course, there was also significant time devoted to getting tremendously wankered, all in the name of celebrating this game we play. Before I go on, I’ll just touch on what EVE Vegas is. It began as a player-run event with a strong CFC presence, which brought folks together to talk about EVE. It featured numerous presentations from fellow players. Over the years, it has grown to rival Fanfest for the US playerbase, who find Vegas easier to get to than some cold rock in the North Atlantic. EVE Vegas has become so large and well-known that CCP now takes a more active role in its organisation and presentation, sending more developers to give presentations and socialize with the attendees.
This year was my second visit to Vegas, having attended EVE Vegas 2013. While the general atmosphere at both events was similar, I personally feel that this year was the better event, even though you never forget your first time. What made it better for me was a few things. First up was the change of venue. Last year they were off the Strip at the Rio, while this year the event moved back to the Strip, taking place at Planet Hollywood. The Rio was nice, and it was a good choice, but it involved a ton of walking around. As someone who by choice did not stay at the venue, that just added to my daily hassle. Despite staying elsewhere again this year, I never felt as hassled by travelling to and from Planet Hollywood as I did to and from the Rio. There was that one time I fell asleep on my bus at 3 am and woke up in a sketchy part of Vegas; unlike some, however, I made it out a-ok.  BJ3lUKY Last year, I went to every presentation, both player and developer, missing all the roundtables though others said this was a bad move. I felt that seeing all the presentations would ensure I was “getting my money’s worth.” I will admit I was wrong; out of all I saw, I only really remember one or two a year later, and the rest went in one ear and out the other. This year, once the schedule was released I focused on a very specific lineup to attend. I went to presentations and roundtables that more matched my interest in game, rather than would give value for money. This year I was focused on the fleet command & NPSI player presentations, as well as the main CCP presentations and roundtables. By now everyone has seen all the presentations, as they are already on YouTube thanks to Ranger 1, so I will not go over each one and cover what made them interesting to me. I do share similar thoughts to Cilvius on this year’s “big ticket” items, though. The roundtables, however, were not recorded, and will only ever been seen by those who were there. You missed out by not coming. I attended the Social Media, Ships & Modules, and Seagull’s post-Keynote roundtables. In every one I was surprised by both the quality of the questions asked, the veracity of the answers given, and the overall positivity from the players towards the developers. Seagull’s roundtable was particularly notable, and would really have been worth streaming, or at least recording for later release. The presentation I really really was interested in, and the one I walked through a sketchy part of Vegas to ensure I was alive for the following morning, was the one hosted by EVE’s own Tintin, Jayne Fillon.  v3rwQln  Jayne spent nearly an hour talking about an issue close to both of us and our ingame interests: NPSI. His talk covered its past and present, the communities that foster it, and even a little on its future. With Phoebe on the horizon, however, it is very difficult to say where our obsession will take us. 5hTSygg Jayne’s presentation was not just one I really wanted to attend, but for me as a veteran of two Vegas trips, it was easily the best player presentation of the weekend. He made full use of the time given, which resulted in no stream downtime. He was well-spoken, with a speaking voice that belied any nervousness he may have felt. Who would not be nervous wearing a bowtie in a room full of nerds? What really struck me about his presentation, though – and this is where it ties into why this EVE Vegas was so much better than last year’s for me – is when he explained that the majority of NPSI pilots are simply there to have a good time. KTER3Z9 That statement applies equally to everyone at EVE Vegas. Personally, I found myself treating the whole event as a roam through interesting, fun, space that saw more and more people joining up as they realised how much fun was on offer. I started off mixing with friends from last year, grabbing names from ingame to drink along side us, until suddenly by the end of the weekend our group had ballooned to people from all across EVE, sharing stories about EVE and each other. All the barriers you usually see between players from high sec and null, between low sec pirates and the CFC, totally fell away. The result was that EVE Vegas 2014 and the shenanigans that went on felt that much more epic. Till next year, then?  
Tags: EVE Vegas, mangala

About the author

Mangala Solaris

Mangala Solaris has been playing EVE since 2006. In his time in EVE, he have been a missioner, a miner, a scammer, a trader & even a null bear, however over the past 4 years or so Mangala has been heavily involved in Red Versus Blue, and more recently has become one the key figures in the NPSI communities of EVE. Somehow in addition to all of this, he finds time to represent the players as a member of CSM 9.