Saturday, 1 September 2012

Blog Banter 39: Home

Having a big break form the community also means I have not made any Blog-Banter entries. So I am keen to get back into this... and here goes.

"Some say a man's home is his castle. For others it is wherever they lay their hat. The concept is just as nebulous in the New Eden sandbox. 

In EVE Online, what does the concept of "home" mean to you?"

Throughout my time in New Eden I have uprooted and moved many, many times. As I'm sure most people do. I have ventured through High-Sec, Low-Sec and W-Space, either dwelling in stations or living out of POS's. The system where I have stayed most will be Ichoriya, a Level-4 Mission hub that sits right next door to Low-Sec. Anyone familiar with Ichoriya is aware of how busy the system is. It is a popular choice for mission-runners and, because of this, attracts other players as well: Ninja-Salvagers, Merc's and general griefers. As it sits in Black-Rise it is rife with Factional Warfare, too. And during our time there we were victims to all. Perhaps I will go as far to say that it is the Mos Eisley of the area. Whether it is still like that, I don't know. I'm talking a while back now. But it sure was an eye-opener and gave me the kick into the darker sides of EvE.

As a Corp, this system played an important part in our evolution. Although we still ran plenty of missions and mining Ops (up until this point, that was all I really knew about the game) it was our step into Alliances. And through that we learnt PvP and Wormholes.

 But would I call it home? No.

For the last few years I have been attached to Wormholes. I love them. At the same time they offer the most dangerous and the safest sides to EvE. Close off your static, collapse any K162's and you are isolated from the rest of New Eden. Totally on your own and safe. Or are you?

I digress.

Even though I can't see myself leaving our C4 any time soon, I wouldn't call it 'home'. Even after I've been there for 3,4 or 10 years I don't think it will earn the right to be my residence. Perhaps it's because I know that eventually I will move up to a C5. Or maybe because the danger of being 'evicted' is ever present. Every time I log and warp towards our POS I always ask myself 'will it be there?'. Who know's the reason. But I know that it will never be 'home'.

When I first read the post from Seismic Stan about this Blog, there is one place that sprung instantly to mind when I read the word 'Home'. And it is a place that I still think of fairly frequently. Kino.

Kino is a 0.7 system. As I type this out I'm actually flying to that system in a shuttle to let the hull bask in the glow of the star and nebula. I haven't actually been back there since long before the graphics upgrade in Crucible, so I don't know whether it still has that red glow emanating from the ring nebula that hugged the system. 8 more jumps and I will find out. But when I think back to that system, I get a warm fuzzy feeling inside that would rekindle any passion that I might lose about this game.

So why Kino? Well, it was the system I moved to with my very first Corp. It was a mining Corp, and I still recall blasting away rocks in my little Bantam. But the fuzzy feeling I get from thinking about Kino isn't associated with killing asteroids, but more attributed to the realisation of the wonder of this game. It was only when I became part of that mining fleet that I fell for EvE. It was when the sense of scale, depth and comradeship that this game offered hit me. Everything was new and interesting, and the game enormous. I had so much to learn and explore about this great and unknown galaxy. I had realised then that the galaxy was at my feet. I knew I was now embarking on a great adventure. And how true that was.

I have just jumped into Kino. The old red nebula has gone and I am looking at a laser-blue star set within the Caldari blue/grey nebula. Not how I remember, sadly. I am currently sat outside my old station and a lone Orca floats outside. Almost peaceful. Shortly it is joined by a Bestower. I sit idle and soak up the ambience on my 24" monitors. Some emotion surfaces as I think back to how the game seemed to me all those years ago. I remember feeling so much wonder. It is that feeling that I cherish. But that feeling has slowly died as I have explored, conquered and understood. I have since learnt that EvE is a savage and violent place that can turn people bitter. The wonder has mostly been drained out of my veins.

But Kino can take me back before all of that. Kino still harbours that precious child-like feeling of awe and wonder. Like passing your driving test and heading out for the first time on your own: so many places to visit and things to see. Now I just drive to get somewhere. Same thing applies in EvE. Kino can show me that feeling again. It can make me feel glimpses of 'EvE that was'.

Yup. Kino is my home.