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What does massively multiplayer actually mean? I have been wondering that for sometime now and then I found a game that puts the massive in massively multiplayer. The term "massively-multiplayer" describes a completely new form of computer games that is slowing emerging, a concept still so new that people have not yet agreed on its exact meaning.

In the case of EVE, "massively-multiplayer" basically means that all players will play on the same playing field. Players will be connected via the Internet and will play in the same game world, where they can meet and interact with other players from all over the world.

EVE is a Space RPG/strategy game.
In addition, it is a massively-multiplayer, online game (MMPOG), based on a persistent world.


EVE is a world far away from mankind's original habitat, planet Earth. How far away, and where, no one knows. Humans got there through a natural wormhole, and gazing upon a sky never before seen, were completely unable to determine the whereabouts of this new world. From the system of New Eden, where the gate of EVE that once led to the old world lies, humans expanded in all directions at a great pace, exploring and colonizing.

Then, seemingly out of the blue, the EVE gate collapsed in an apocalyptic catastrophe of a scale never before witnessed by the human race, ruining the New Eden system in the process. Thousands of small colonies were left in isolation to fend for themselves. For millenniums they endured on the brink of extinction and only a handful survived.

Of those surviving colonies, 5 were to rise up and become the major empires that hold between them the balance of power in the world of EVE today. These are: the Amarr Empire, the Gallente Federation, the Caldari Empire, the Minmatar Republic and the Jovian Empire, plus several small independent factions and states.

For more than a century the five empires have lived together in relative peace. They've strived hard to maintain this peace, as each of them realizes only too well the grave consequences of a massive inter-stellar war. Recent technological breakthroughs in FTL travel, and the ensuing increase in space travellers, has shaken, but not broken the fragile peace - at least not yet.


The game client (including graphics and sound) will be distributed on a CD and sold like any other PC game. To be able to play EVE, however, players must connect their client to the game world through the Internet. The game world will be based on a network of servers maintained by CCP, which will handle all interactions between the world and the players. When players log into the game, they instantly become a part of the same world as all other players that are logged on at that time. The game servers will keep track of the players while they are connected to the game, and handle all interactions between the players, such as trade and combat.

In a nutshell EVE can be described as a complete alter-reality, similar in many ways to virtual reality as portrayed, for instance, in the movie "The Matrix". The only difference between the Matrix and EVE is that instead of accessing the world through a neural jack, you access it through the Internet and interact with it through a PC computer.

The fact that the game world is persistent means that it does not cease to exist when a player disconnects from the game. The game world, and anything the player might have created in it, such as permanent constructions, will continue to exist and will be visible to (and possibly destroyed by) other players. Players will be represented in the game by so called "player characters", and these will be persistent as well, accumulating skills and status over time.

The game is being developed by CCP, a start-up Internet games company. CCP will exclusively be developing MMPOG titles.


Because EVE is an MMPOG (massively-multiplayer online game) it is difficult to categorize it by any conventional standards. How it is categorized depends on the level at which it is played.

The game is set in an unknown portion of space, spanning thousands of solar systems, many of which are settled. Players begin by creating an in-game character, which starts the game equipped with a basic spaceship ready to explore the world. To begin with, players can trade goods between systems or conduct other money making activities, such as mining asteroids, gathering scientific data on unmanned systems or even cleaning up space debris. Gains made from such activity can be used to upgrade the ship with weapons and equipment, and also to develop the character by training him in various skills.

When the player has mastered the basics of the game, amassed some money and equipment and advanced his/her character through basic skills, the possibilities become almost endless. Players who wish to explore peaceful paths can continue to upgrade their ships to bigger and better-defended cargo vessels, purchase advanced mining or research equipment, and continue to develop their character by specializing in their preferred skills. Others will choose to explore more dangerous path, such as piracy, smuggling or bounty hunting. There will even be ways of making money through such activities as spying on other players and reporting illegal activity.

The basic RPG, space simulation part of EVE is really just the tip of the iceberg. When players band together to form factions and companies the game progresses to a more grand strategic level.

Groups of players will be able to build and manage space stations, start up major mining operations on planets and asteroids, manufacture goods and equipment and, no less importantly, fight other groups of players for their bases and resources.

However, the level at which each player decides to participate is a matter of personal choice, and the game leaves ample room for continual progress and diversity in all its solo playing aspects. For those who opt to do so, becoming the best lone-wolf pirate or bounty hunter around is a never-ending task, as the competitors are other human players who will employ every method at their disposal to gain an edge over the rest. Solo players will also be able to hire out their services as mercenaries or hit-men to other players or player-run companies, and such activities will be handled securely through in-game channels.

The bottom line is that  CCP aims to create a rich and diverse universe centered on human interaction. Players can play the game as a simple space trading game, or aim to control the largest, most powerful company in the world. They provide the rules and tools, but it is the players themselves who create the adventures.

EVE is on schedule to go live in spring 2002. You will, however, have the opportunity to sign up as a beta tester before then. A dedicated team will work on creating new content and make patches to the game after itís been launched.


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