|Seleene on the catwalk.|
Okay, so there's threads with lots of boob pics in them but now that it's actually out, what does everyone think of it?
One of the cooler things I've seen happen since yesterday is that it's obvious that even :bitter vets: have a lot of love for their characters. The 'magic' of this new system is obvious even to the most jaded as it gives us the ability to bring to life an image that may have only existed in our minds for 7+ years.
It's also a lot of fun. I logged into TS last night with nearly 40 people arguing about lip gloss and eye shadow and what constituted the perfect 'apple bum', sometimes with significant others sitting in the background giving tips throughout the process. Lots of laughs.
As you go through the process tho, it's hard not to be struck by some of the stuff that's missing. I get that this is Phase One of the Master Incarna Plan, but still, a few points that stuck out to me:
- The inability to do seemingly basic things like change the color of clothing is a major disappointment. I was very surprised by this tbh and it leads me to wonder if this is due to some kind of artistic control over how CCP wants the game to look or because it's just not ready for deployment.
- Where is my corp / alliance logo? Even if I couldn't have it as a patch on my shirt / jacket or tattoo'd on my ass, it woulda been nice to be able to stand in front of it as a background or something.
- Common stuff like lack of accessories. Rings, earrings, necklaces and such. There are far too many gay cyno alts missing their diamond earring studs.
$$ Money $$
I can only assume that some of the above is specifically being held back for the larger Incarna release. The primary concern, of course, is are we going to be charged for it or will it be free as part of the expansion? We've joked about it and suspicion has run rampant but, so far, we have exactly zero solid information on what CCP's actual plans are in this regard. One could be cynical and say that THEY don't even know what their plan is but, in this case, I call bullshit and believe they do have at least a basic idea of where this is all going to lead.
For myself, if I have to pay in game ISK (of which there's a glut of anyway) to fancy up my characters, I can live with that. There's not enough shit to spend money on anyway these days and ISK sinks are good. However, the monster in the closet is the idea that this stuff will be some sort of micro-transaction or PLEX purchase, which I don't see being very popular to say the least.
The sad part of it all though is that after you've (re)made your characters and you've spent a few days showing people pics and marveling over the technology... that's it. It still adds absolutely nothing whatsoever to the actual day to day game play of EVE Online, which is a game first and foremost about SPACESHIPS.
As a former employee, I understand all too well the drive of CCP to create the ultimate Sci Fi universe simulator with all the trimmings, but as many have noted the ambition to reach this goal often sidelines the things which might actually contribute to the day to day enjoyment of EVE. At the very least, the order in which this ambition is being carried out is questionable.
The first time I saw any sort of demo for this was back at FanFest 2006. Since that time they've obviously come a long way in terms of technology and how things look. I think it's safe to say that this is the most incredible 'character creation' technology ever seen in a game, at least in terms of graphics, and CCP is justifiably proud of what they have accomplished. It leaves something to be desired in terms of customization but I've already covered that.
The concern here is the one voiced over and over - where is the GAMEPLAY?
The CSM delegates have gone into great detail about how even in their face to face meetings, there have been no definitive answers. In fact, deflection / no comment seems to be the mantra. The latest EON article hints at things like being able to leave your ship and 'do stuff off the grid', which may prove interesting if implemented correctly but, even then, why not make the effort to present some sort of minimal vision for this feature?
I remain of the opinion that after all these years Incarna is a pretty package with no soul; the heart and soul of EVE is the day to day sandbox game play and player generated drama which has kept so many of us playing for so long. I would still much rather see this level of resources and effort put into something that furthers the game play elements we all share an interest in. How many of you would trade Incarna for a true UI overhaul, sub system targeting, 0.0 / lo-sec iteration, or or or or.... ?
Incarna seems very cool and :awesome:, but I could live without it.