Thursday, January 14, 2010

Eve Blog Banter #14 - Where am I going?

For the first time ever, I'm participating in CrazyKinux's Eve Blog Banter. For the first time since it started 14 months ago. (Edit: oops, my mistake... I just found I'd done #2 back in November 2008.) Why now? Because I felt it was fitting for me to actually do something for this one. This is gonna be a long one...

Welcome to the fourteenth installment of the EVE Blog Banter, the monthly EVE Online blogging extravaganza created by none other than me, CrazyKinux. The EVE Blog Banter involves an enthusiastic group of gaming bloggers, a common topic within the realm of EVE Online, and a week to post articles pertaining to the said topic. The resulting articles can either be short or quite extensive, either funny or dead serious, but are always a great fun to read! Any questions about the EVE Blog Banter should be directed to Check out other EVE Blog Banter articles at the bottom of this post!
The first banter of 2010 comes to us from the EVE Blog Father, in which I ask the following: As we begin another year in New Eden, ask yourselves "What Now?" What will I attempt next? What haven't I done so far in EVE? Was it out fear, funds, or knowledge? Have I always wanted to start my own corporation, but have never dared doing so? Is there a fledging mercenary waiting to come out of its shell? Or maybe an Industrialist? What steps and objectives will I set myself to accomplish in order to reach my ultimate goal for this year? EVE is what you make of it. So, what is it going to be for you?

Before I talk about where I'm going in 2010, I thought it would be appropriate to review where I've been in 2009...

On the 4th January 2009 I put Black Claw out to pasture and created Alexia Morgan. I decided I wanted a fresh start and focused on becoming a 'pure PVP' specialist instead of the generalised pilot that Black Claw was. I started a new corp and called it The Punishers, and started my focused PVP training. I can't even remember what I was doing back then to raise money for upcoming PVP ships, but I suspect it involved mission-running (hence why I can't remember, as that stuff kills your brain cells).

It was a month after I started Alexia that I was inspired to start, the Eve Bloggers Portal. I had already started the EVE-BLOGGERS chat channel in-game, and had been quite active in the Eve blogging community since I started playing and blogging in early 2006, so creating an Eve blogging portal seemed like it was a good step in the right direction. I also set Alexia on the path of becoming a Recon pilot.

I took an active break from Eve for a while and played Lord Of The Rings Online (LOTRO) until I got sick of it. It took a few months. In that time, I continued logging in to Eve every day or every few days to continue Alexia's skill training.

I was asked to pilot some battleships from highsec to lowsec for a pirate, and they offered me 15 million ISK just to take it one jump. 0.O I decided this could be lucrative, so when I discovered that training up every race's battleship would only take me a week, I did it. After that, I trained so that I could fly every T1 combat ship of every race. It took me another week. I think it was one of the best decisions I've ever made.

My Recon training finished! 7 long months to get from a 1 month old character to a qualified Force Recon pilot. A friend of mine convinced me I needed to make money to afford the Tech 2 ship, and I agreed with him. I joined him in Providence, a 'carebear' region, where one could reasonably safely make a lot of money from ratting. Lucky for me I was able to fly a Caldari Raven, even though I was Minmatar, and so I spent most of my money on buying it and fitting it. And it was pathetic. The DPS output was just ludicrous. So I did some research and discovered I had to train up some significant missiles skills to really take advantage of it. So I started doing that.

I decided I wanted to move somewhere else. Maestro Ulv, the CEO (and blogger, Biomassed) of Phaze-9, a corp within Ushra'Khan, invited me to join him. I accepted the invitation a few weeks later and joined at the end of the month, moving all my stuff over to where U'K resided.

What an exciting month! Lots of action in corp and alliance fleets against CVA and other targets. I had a ball!

On 2 December I created a post and came up with the term OUCH, for Open University of Celestial Hardship. It was a post suggesting new players should learn from the 'school of hard knocks' in nullsec, but OUCH sounded better. The feedback was very positive, and a lot of people thought there SHOULD be a nullsec university, as there wasn't one in Eve. And so an idea formed.

One thing led to another, people approached me and offered their support, and a lot of discussions focused on planning and preparation. I'm the kind of person that doesn't sit back on his arse when he has a good idea. I run with it.

On 11 December, only 9 days after I came up with a throwaway idea, a humorous comment, OUCH was created as a corporation within Eve by a new character I created especially for the project, and then quickly joined the New Bastion alliance. My intention with the new character as CEO was to use it to run OUCH while still being active in U'K as Alexia. It didn't work out that way though.

It became obvious very quickly that running a nullsec training corp would not only take up most of my time, but also would require someone with far more skills than a 2 day old character. I discussed it with Maestro and his 2nd in command, Xious, and they gave me their blessings to leave Phaze-9 and focus on OUCH.

And so I did, but then I had another problem. Interest in OUCH was so high that I was getting more recruits than I was able to sustain. Alexia's corp management skills were unable to keep up with demand. We reached 30-something members in just a couple of weeks, and to train Corp Management V would take 9 days. I had to suspend recruitment until I could accept up to 50 members, except that I had membership applications piling up... I decided I had to come up with a solution that would allow momentum to continue.

On 30 December Black Claw returned! He already had Corp Management V, so I set him up as CEO of OUCH and recruitment continued. I immediately trained Megacorp Management I, then II, so OUCH was able to have 150 members.

As of 11 January, OUCH had 102 members, and we're still increasing! Yesterday I paused active recruitment so that we can consolidate what we're doing now, before moving on to the next stage.

And that's where we're at now. What an incredible, action-packed, roller-coaster of a year it's been!

So where to next?

I have plans. Big plans. And I don't see why those plans should fail. With 100 members having joined us in our first month, I see no reason why we can't continue that. By June I expect to have 700 members in OUCH, all of them either as students learning how to survive and prosper in nullsec, or as teachers providing training.

I'm already working on building up our infrastructure so that we can start our own POS operations, with the intention of using income to support the provisioning of ships, fittings and skillbooks to all the students.

As we build our infrastructure and our resources, I intend forming a significant military force to take and secure our own Sovereignty. We will own our own area of nullspace before the end of 2010.

I have big plans for 2010. I'm glad so many others want to support those plans, and I think I'm looking for more people to add their support.

OUCH is not just for people wanting to learn nullsec survival with PVP and making money. It's also for anyone else that want to offer their support for what OUCH stands for, and for what OUCH wants to achieve.

We're not going to be able to do it alone, nor do I want us to. OUCH needs:
  • students to learn about surviving and thriving in nullspace
  • skilled and experienced trainers who can help provide security for operations
  • industrial corps to assist OUCH with manufacturing and logistical support
  • combat corps to assist with security for OUCH training and logistical operations
  • corps or alliances to offer support so that OUCH can carve out its own nullsec home
  • friends that support OUCH's vision
So that's where I've been in 2009, and that's where I'm going in 2010.

Will you join me for the ride?

List of Blog Banter Participants:
  1. CrazyKinux's Musing - A beginning is a very delicate time...
  2. The Wandering Druid of Tranquility - Words, words, words…
  3. My God It's Full of Stars - What Now?
  4. The Elitist - Plans for 112yc
  5. Into the unknown with gun and camera - Show me the money
  6. Ecliptic Rift - Enabling the future
  7. Inanity and Doom - New Year's Resolutions, New Eden Style
  8. Break Vol - Blog Banter #14
  9. Guns Ablaze - What Now?
  10. Adventures in Mission Running - The Way Forward
  11. Diary of a Pod Pilot - Things I want to do
  12. Inner Sanctum of the Ninveah - The Year That Will Be
  13. Roc's Ramblings - WordPress ate my blog
  14. Vive Virtual - Frontier Living
  15. A Mule in EVE - Next on the chopping block
  16. Prano's Journey - I Peer Into My Crystal Pod...
  17. Life in Low Sec - Expanding the Franchise
  18. The Light of Stars - Testing the claims of CCP
  19. A Memoir From Space - A New Direction
  20. The Chronofile - Blog Banter 2010
  21. FlashFresh - What now for Flash?
  22. EVE Opportunist - Fyreite in 112
  23. Mike Azariah - Jiorj
  24. Yarrbear Tales - Year in Review
  25. The Independant Analyst - The Year Ahead
  26. The Travels of Black Claw - Where am I going?
  27. Warp Scrammed - What to do this year
  28. Sered's Lives - Searching for directions in 2010
  29. Finders & Keepers - New Tears, Same Great Taste
  30. More to come...

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