New Player Feedback - General game not just NPE

First of all, i hope it’s the right spot to do so - but after reading through lots of the patch feedback, economy thread and the boards, i noticed a lot of discussion of mainly long term players (not unexpected) and often mentioning issues why new player retention might be harmed etc.
I did not encounter discussion participation of many newer players (also not entirely unexpected, as most of them do not bother to join forums etc…)

I noticed, i rambled on a lot, so here to start with a tl;dr:

  • give more guidance for progression and reward that progression (meaningful mission rewards, actual achievement rewards like skillpoints)
  • offer a beginner-entry to PVP without risking “all you got” - give faction warfare less serious implications for new players who do not know exactly what they are doing but want to learn how to fight other people
  • make a decision about your lore…either keep it, but then please make it more meaningful or decide it’s not working and rework it. Right now it is messy to understand for newer players, as everyone aims to have balanced/good standings to every faction because of reasons
  • give incentives to work with other players - PVE content that requires more than one player should not be locked away in the end game. Make the fleet finder actually useful

Here is more explanation and background as to why I suggest those points:

I am not exactly a new player (when looking at my account-age) but still somehow fit the bill, so i figured, to leave some of my impressions after returning to EVE recently and having played for a month now. For what it’s worth - my intentions are to give a helpful point of view and some discussion input, that is not from a player who basically lives in EVE (no offense meant).

I few words to my playing experience:
I seemingly created my EVE account back in 2007, although i don’t even remember that really. I know, that back then you had to basically spend your first month of skill training for the “Learning” skill to V, which was not really a good idea, but i did that back then.
I stopped playing not long after my first experiences and returned some time around 2016 again to “give it a try for real” this time.

So i read up on the game, joined E-UNI and starting making some actual first experiences. Luckily enough, i was reimbursed for my whole learning skills training, that was not needed anymore by then, so i basically had a skill injector’s worth of skillpoints to catch up with basics to be able to participate in some activity. That really helped, because i could fast track some stuff and try some ships and make my way to a T1 cruiser pretty quickly.

Those kinds of progression mean a lot to newer players. While EVE does not live on “bigger is always better” it still gives you a good sense of progress, if your ship gets bigger.

After a while at E-UNI, i lost time and interest and the game rested for another few years.

I came back recently to see what changed and because a friend of mine also started playing (again). So i loaded up my old account and was overwhelmed by everything again.
I had a little shy of 9 Mio SP and around 200mio ISK on my bank. To that a few ships and the knowledge, that i liked the whole exploration playstyle back then and wanted to get more into everything.
Here is where my most recent “new player experiences” come from, because basically i started at zero again. I had to read up a lot about the basics i either forgot or didn’t really know at all. Watched some (very helpful) videos on youtube - especially about things that changed quite a lot until today.

Here are some of my key takeaways which might be helpful for some to understand what newer, less community-involved players experience when playing EVE (again):

  • The whole mission agent thing is super confusing, because there are so many of them and you are kind of lost on which ones to work for. The agency tab helps, but you don’t really have any connections to any of them at all. The only thing that helps connect you to them (in terms of who are they, what do i do for them and why should i do that) is the sisters epic arc. It at least gives some sort of guidance and introduces you to the lore behind the universe. The Epic Arc is quite “buggy” although it actually does not seem to be real bugs, but UX-issues. Whenever you have a mission, that you “accidentally” accepted before logging of - and then there’s a downtime in between - you’ll end up with a view in the epic-arc window, that shows you the NEXT agent to talk to. If that one is not - by coincidence - the same one who gave you that mission, you end up in a UX-dead end. I found that out after Mission 8, when i was supposed to talk to sister Alitura according to the agency tab, but she refused to give me a new job. I in fact had to go back to the agent before (the one in open space) to “reconnect” to the arc storyline. No one tells you that…not even the GMs. Just googling about Alitura refusing to talk will show you, that this is an ongoing issue for many players.

  • While i really like the PVP-approach of EVE and the whole idea, that you are never really safe, i find the “entry to PVP” not very intuitive. Faction Warfare is technically a good idea, but you are not really “eased” into that experience because of the whole mechanics. Two things stand out in particular:
    ** you are using your own ship and thus are at risk of losing it. Improvement idea from a “not super involved player”: Why not have the option to join the factions Military or something and get some free ships for PVP matches? Make this available only to alpha players or players below a certain networth/skillpoint barrier? Or make it available only once per faction. You could have some sort of a military career (which would also help strengthen the lore-connection of your character) and you could be matched against more suitable players in terms of skills.
    ** you are risking bad faction standing by participating without any real gains. This is maybe not that big of an issue, but wherever you are reading about “how to EVE”, there’s always players telling you to care for good standings to all factions, declining missions when being offered to attack another faction etc. That seems counterintuitive then - it also connects to one of the biggest issues, that newer players are presented with: Insecurity about what to do.

  • in connection to the “insecurity” issue: There seems to be a fundamental issue within EVE itself. A certain lack of decision making towards lore and execution. Seemingly 90% of all players that are involved for longer end up being “liked by every faction” - or at least working towards that, because there seems to be consensus, that this is the way. You need to be able to travel freely, accept the most profitable missions, etc.

The lore on the other hand speaks of conflict between the empires, players making decisions and choosing origin stories. None of that really matters in the actual player experience, aside from confusing players like me about what to do and how to “not screw up” without knowing better. There should be a clearer path for this topic of faction standings and lore in general.

  • income isn’t that big of a deal as many claim: i am making a solid income (for a player of my level/progress) by spending some mining in hi-sec together with someone, i just met in a belt and started talking to. He has an orca, i started in a venture and now fly a barge. We end up fleeting up every day during our home-office ours and basically mine with one eye on the screen.
    I like the fact, that we are not afk, we sometimes chat, always keep an eye out for gankers and that’s cool. It gives me a solid income in addition to exploration.

The missions - on the other hand - pay quite shitty for a new player. Lvl 1 (and lvl 2 seemingly too) missions barely pay up for the ammo you spend (exagerated). But seriously…100k? That’s basically nothing…no matter how little risk/time invested. There is no point in actually becoming invested in those missions. They feel like a silly grind, until you reach level 4 and then just “grind more effectively”

I remember my E-Uni days back in 2016, when people where running lvl 3 and 4 missions together. Not only was this a bit more fun, it seemed like a nicer way to do things in general. This - and the fact, that incursions are the only real PVE content, that “enforce fleet action” - makes me think, that there should be more stuff, that makes newer players fleet up with people to do PVE stuff. Why not have “lower level incursions” or some other activities - like missions? - that you can only do together with people? The fleet finder is there, it’s just very empty most of the time, because why would you need it? Almost every long term player is in a corp and the “newbies” are flying around solo. It would help to create more player-interaction, if the game would give some incentive for that right from the start

  • speaking of incentives: What’s wrong with those achievements? I know, many “older” players hated them openly, when they were introduced - but i actually like that progression tree. It helps me get a sense of progression as a newer player and could help me find some orientation/motivation. The only thing that really sucks about them is that you don’t get ■■■■ for them aside a from a notification?! What would be the problem with them actually rewarding me for certain stuff?! I don’t see the issue. I don’t want crazy lootbox-mania, i see many games with issues…but some sort of reward - maybe skillpoints? - would be cool. Because it would help newer players progress a little better and - if not given out in crazy high amounts - not hurt anyone (I’d say). The learning curve for beginners to get into ships, learn the magic 14 etc is steep and partially not very exciting. Giving them some incentives to be able to fast track a little is cool and - spoken as a capitalist - even entices players to pay for some plex/injectors, because it shows you, that fast tracking is sometimes helpful.

Sorry for the long wall of text in the end, but i felt like sharing and maybe someone finds it helpful as another perspective.


Thanks for the TLDR. :slight_smile:

  • Sigh. They came close. But decided to monetize it instead.
  • People have been suggesting a new tier of FW complex that only allows in T1 frigates (current lowest tier allows T1 and Faction frigates, which are quite powerful) in the hopes that that will make it easier for people to get into FW. So, this might actually happen one day.
  • A large chunk of the player base doesn’t care about lore. Now, I know that there are people that do, and I have nothing against CCP creating lore, but I’d prefer it if game mechanics were designed for fun and balance, and not lore consistency.
  • There’s actually a lot of content that can be made easier and more lucrative by partnering up. In fact, some content has even been specifically designed for it (i.e. the Abyss). And even high end PvE content (such as incursions) are relatively accessible to newbros. So, it’s not a problem of the content not existing. So, what’s going on? Well, it’s probably multiple factors, but one big one is probably an issue of trust. Players are being taught even before they start playing that Eve is full of scumbags that are trying to get over on them. Thus, newbros are much more reluctant to cooperate with randos in Eve, than they are in other games. So, CCP could do things like improve the fleet finder and create more two and three man content, but I’d bet we’d still see relatively few newbros fleeting up to run it.

P.S. A lot of bitter vets take to the forums to complain (while happy players tend to stay in game playing). So, don’t let all the negative Nancy’s color your perception of the game, or it’s player base.


if you already know ppl in rl then just play eve as a group and you should be all set – same with any large mmo with anon players from wherever

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That’s not the usual case though. I was lucky and came into the game with a group that I already trusted. Trust in the game is not easily found.

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Perhaps its because new players like myself can’t even get started in the game without getting destroyed by experienced players. Maybe there should be some rule for new players, protected for a week or so. Just two days in i can say i was pretty shocked some ahole blow me up whilst doing the so called training missions.
The last industry agent mission requires ore for production of the blueprint thats only found in low securit area…who thought that one up!? Overall the introduction to the game is poor compared to most games and thats even more apparent because of the depth and complexity of eve. Maybe they should revise the introduction to the game for new players, definetily a better explanation of docked interface, ship modules and change the intial training missions so new players aren’t forced into low security areas to complete them.

This is a clear case of “Ooops!”
For 17 years until some months ago, these ores were available in Highsec (sec status 0,5-0,7). But then CCP has changed the ore allocation, but obviously not the career missions.
I’m pretty sure you’ll receive a refund if you report your case in a ticket (and, well, kindness ftw).

And for CCP it’s time to review very old code…

For all others reading this and wondering what to do: Buying the ore is also solving the task, you don’t need much. This is quicker anyway :wink:

It looks like you were killed in lowsec.

If you go into lowsec or nullsec, you can be killed easily. Its actually a lot harder to be killed in hisec, and a lot less likely.

And yes, you shouldve gotten a warning about entering lowsec when you were at the gate.


This was your fault.

Well, no, its actually relatively easy and cheap to buy these on the market. You need so little of them anyways. I did the career agents, and i didnt go into lowsec to mine them.

But still, the window. The window popped up, telling you the risks. You were told.


No, things like Nocxium and Zydrine were never available in hisec.

But again, youre just making a small frigate. Those minerals are going to cost you near-nothing.

The NPE being horrible is just a simple truth.

You choosing to go into low sec, where you get a warning as shown above, is your own choice. Had you checked a guide or asked in Rookie chat we’d have told you to just buy those minerals, you chose to do none of that.

So yes the NPE is horrible but at the same time you died because of your own choices. You lost a free frigate, it’s not the end of the world. Learn from it and choose to make better choices.

Hey, I’ve minered Hedbergite in anomalies for years!
It was not easy to find these anomalies, but I was very happy when I found one.

But you are right, I thought about Omber and that kind.
The small rest I needed i’ve just bought, as proposed by the agent. But you even don’t need to acquire a new ship, just repackaging one you already have is the easiest way…

I think the main problem is that the agent is providing a blueprint instead of a link to the market…

Most new players wouldnt go searching for it, though. The amount you need for building frigates is so small its usually just eaier to buy them outright.

Sure, but thats what rookie chat is for, in my opinion.

The tutorial can be in completed in various ways i guess with hindsight, but at that point in time i was trying to complete as its initially intended,. Building your 1st ship from scratch ( a tormentor) by doing the whole industry thing:- mining, processing, building and selling it for profit.

Buying ore…not sure how much isk new players have on 2nd login, and obviously improving skills and ship modules tops buying ore to complete a turorial.

The task can be completed by repacking a ship given by a training agent in previous mission but that doesn’t introduce new players to every aspect of industry carreer so that would make the tutorail pointless.

As for the warnings, the interface is so initially confusing its difficult to know wtf going on with everything on the screen, and also I prob didn’t take it seriously as thought training missions would guarantee some safety, as per most games.
The BP should be something produced from ore mined in high sec areas…i know what that is now!

Also there should be message on entry to the eve saying 'watch youtube before playing so you can bear to play longer than week.

You get more than enough isk from the career agents to buy any and all minerals you’ll need.

Beyond that, the whole concept of certain minerals being in low sec and then being able, using the map (gl with that), to identify and set destination to a low sec system takes FAR more effort than going into help chat, which you’ve seen people asking and answering questions in, and go “how to get these minerals please?”.

You have to actively choose to not get help, or look up basic help, before you get to the point where you somehow end up in a low sec system.

No, the message is: “Losing ships is not the end of the world, but part of the game. Welcome! The Industry Career Agent will be happy to grant you a new Venture.”

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Let me weigh in with some of my initial impressions. I just started playing the game like 3 days ago.

So the biggest hurdle to overcome for me as a new player was UI design. This game should really emphasize the necessity of using external resources to learn the game.

I know, nowadays tutorials do a pretty good job of guiding a player (at least in most modern games) but I can see with the complexity of the game, tutorial would probably be too long and frustrating.
I am guessing the intention was to make advisor missions to teach players further, but those do a poor job guiding the player. The amount of times I had to stop playing, breaking my immersion and look for solutions to silly problems was mindbogling.


  • Where did my overview window go?" - after like 10 minutes googling and asking in chat I figured out it nested into the chat panel… obviously!

  • Mission ask me to use Overlay Sensor - “What the hell am I looking for? Where is the button? I’ll ask the help chat” - “Just press Alt+P, it will give you probe scan screen, it’s even better because you can see the anomalies” - “Right… whatever that mean, so screw overlay sensor then”

  • Ok In order to jump clone I have to leave my ship… which button I press to do that? Is it on the station panel, I can change into a corvette there… nope, you have to right click on the ship in a hangar…

I found that there is like million ways to do certain tasks and nothing is coherent. It’s a mumbo jumbo of different methods you have to learn in order to use the UI effectively, I get that the game is almost two decades old and some things add up but the UI is not intuitive to use initially.

Help button wasn’t helpful at all, it only advised me to use the community and customer support, but I found some attempts to explain the game in the agency panel, who would have guessed?
Unfortunately it was only about one task… scanning… Disappointing because presentation actually was well done there.

Secondly, The game is portrayed as complex and in depth, and as I understand, it all stems from player interaction, but I find the actual core game loop is rather shallow and uninspiring.

I finished all the career advisor missions and started epic arc missions with sisters of EvE and I don’t seem to be enjoying actually playing the game.

Most activities are simple and mindnumbing, don’t require much of my attention, like I’ve been watching youtube while doing mining missions.
Exploration is not about exploration but solving a simple mini-game.
Combat mostly rely on your ship build (at least I haven’t learned any skills thru gameplay which would make me a better pilot).
Trade is pretty unique due to the way the game is structured but I wouldn’t call this “gameplay” really.
Missions are most of the time nothing more than station hopping, and PVP… well you can forget about it.

Here where comes my 3rd complaint. Time sinks.
Skill learning is not based on my skill, in game progress or anything, it is time constrained.
I received Cormorant from the missions and I couldn’t even pilot it. It requires me to wait a day and some so I can train the skill, now I asked the community how long they have to wait for their skills, on higher levels and I was shocked. This doesn’t sound like meaningful progression.

I discussed some of my concerns with few people in game and I was told pretty much straight away to better quit the game, because it’s not a game for me. People told me that I need instant gratification and lack patience and I call that nonsense.

Believe it or not but I understand the concept of grind.
Most people think grind is a negative thing but in reality any game that has the option to play the game continuously or endlesly require some sort of grind, simply because there is no way any game developer could make content faster than it is consumed.
The only way this can be remedied is by procedural generation but we still don’t have a good enough algorithms to make content created this way meaningful (well maybe GPT-3 will change that).

In the end, if you enjoy the gameplay and the grind is the integral part of the experience I don’t mind it, but If you have to grind in order to get to the good part of the game, that’s where I draw the line.

I tried to follow the lore but it looks it’s nonconsequential, and just a veneer.
I also checked fleet up tab, and it was depressing. So I decided as a last resort to join a corporation, give the game a chance.

“Silly problems”… Learning to handle the GUI is not silly, neither is clone management. All of us had to learn, and watching footage is part of that, so is talking to veterans in a corp.
You can play EVE solo, but to learn EVE solo is the hard way. You mustn’t complain if you pick that path - it’s an MMO.
I bet you didn’t go exploring in Lowsec or WH space - there it is thrilling.

Well, that’s what trials are for! Don’t pay for what you don’t like, don’t invest time you feel useless. We can assure you nobody’s gonna change the game for you or us; either you play it the way it works, or you just leave and try something else.

I don’t mind learning the game, but I think it’s a problem when I have to watch youtube to find out what people are clicking to do certain things. These were just a few examples.
I asked people around about different things more than I was comfortable with. Relying on your playerbase to fix your poorly designed UI is not a good solution imho.

Guess you are right, I thought I would give the game a chance see if it opens up, but if I don’t enjoy the core game loop now It probably won’t change my mind If I grind to higher level.

For me, this “grind” was fun. I enjoyed my first clone jump, I was happy when I solved my disappeared overview problem, and I like mining and PI from time to time, but I know many players who don’t do any industry at all and just subscribe.
Without fun, playing is senseless.

I think the real challenge and fun in EvE comes with finding ways to avoid grind as much as possible. There are only a few things which require you to repeat for an extended amount of time, like standing. Even ISK making can be fun, if you are doing many different things or non-obvious stuff, like scanning/collecting lost drones, kill MTUs, loot big fights in null, which are all newbie-friendly. I know someone who makes billions by stealing loot from gankers in highsec as an Alpha account.

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