EVE Online is certainly a complex and intimidating game, but it doesn't have to be. Our beginner's guide (opens in new tab) helps you understand what makes EVE special and how to get involved in one of gaming's most creative (and weird) communities.
Fifteen years ago, on May 6, 2003, EVE Online was released. Back then, it was little more than a bizarre spaceship sandbox that appealed only to the most hardcore by promising them a life of their own making. In its first year, only 25,000 brave pilots set out to colonize the barbarous frontier of New Eden. Since then, that number has grown exponentially—and so has EVE Online. With 14 kilometer long Titan-class supercapital ships, enormous player-built death stars called Citadels, and player-driven empires fielding armies of thousands of individual players, the EVE Online of today is a vastly different game.
But that promise at the heart of EVE Online—that you can be who you want and have influence over others—has never changed. And in the 15 years since, EVE Online's players have become characters in some incredible stories. I've had the honor of documenting many of these tales over the past few years and am proud to be able to share them with you today in one easy to find place.
Here are PC Gamer's greatest stories about EVE Online.
How a scam in EVE Online turned into its greatest rescue mission (opens in new tab)
Scooter McCabe is EVE Online's most prolific scammer. If you name it, chances are he's conned some poor sap out of it. But even his reputation for cruel con artistry has its limits, and when Scooter discovered a pilot was exploiting naive new players for personal gain, his mission to bring him down turned into EVE Online's first humanitarian aid mission.
Inside the biggest heist in EVE Online history (opens in new tab)
You should always be careful of those you spurn—especially in EVE Online. That's a lesson that the leader of one of EVE's biggest and oldest alliances, Gigx, learned when he logged on one morning to find that, overnight, his second-in-command had stolen everything. It was, to date, the biggest theft in EVE Online history. But, even worse, all of it was an intricate revenge plot from Gigx's former allies whom he betrayed a year earlier. What goes around comes around.
Meet the biggest scammer in EVE Online (opens in new tab)
The first time I met Scooter McCabe was in a Las Vegas casino, a fitting place for EVE's most renowned scammer to kick back. Amid the chirps and clangs of slot machines, Scooter opened up about his favorite cons and his surprisingly personal reasons for why he never feels bad for those he scams. Years later, I spoke with Scooter again to hear about his favorite tricks of the trade.
Murder Incorporated: Ten months of deception for one kill in Eve Online (opens in new tab)
The heist that started it all. Originally published in 2005, this incredible story details the painstaking ten-month process that a group of expert hitmen underwent to gain the trust and loyalty of their target and then, in her most vulnerable moment, burn her entire corporation to the ground. It became the blueprint for deception and betrayal in EVE Online, and it remains one of its greatest stories.
How an EVE Online con artist tricked a ruthless pirate into giving him his priceless ship (opens in new tab)
Speaking of long cons, this story caught fire not because of the material value of what was stolen, but its personal significance. Infamous pirate Tikktokk flies a one of a kind frigate decorated with over 400 markings for each person he has killed—a one of a kind possession in New Eden. Which is exactly why this scammer decided to spend months befriending Tikktokk and then tricking him into handing it over.
How one mistake turned EVE Online's deadliest hunters into corpses (opens in new tab)
Titans are the most majestic things in EVE Online. These colossal spaceships span upwards of 18 kilometres in length and come equipped with devastating 'Doomsday' weapons that can eviscerate entire fleets in one fell swoop. They take almost a year of training to fly, cost nearly 100 billion ISK to build, and are the backbone of any major EVE alliance. And Rocket X kills them for a living.
How EVE Online's greatest military leader once fooled the entire galaxy (opens in new tab)
Over a decade ago, the Titan-class supercapital ships of EVE Online were almost mythologically rare. Space historian Andrew Groen, author of the excellent Empires of EVE Online, writes about how one of EVE's greatest players hoodwinked the entire galaxy and managed to save one from being destroyed by an armada of almost a thousand players.
Meet the most honest man in EVE Online (opens in new tab)
Despite what people want you to believe, most people in EVE Online aren't amoral psychos. Some people, like Chribba, have built a legacy on honesty—and made a killing doing it. For years, Chribba was a broker, the middle-man who ensured that the most expensive deals in the galaxy went down without a hitch. Things didn't always go well for Chribba.
The struggle to maintain EVE Online's only graveyard (opens in new tab)
Not everyone in EVE Online is a ruthless murderer. In fact, Azia Burgi is quite the opposite: She cares deeply for what happens to pilots after they die. For almost a decade, Azia has been maintaining a graveyard in EVE Online that has become a holy site for players to memorialize both those who die in game and in real life. Her tireless efforts to protect the graveyard from vandals and the ever-present threat of despawning are a sobering reminder of the transience of life in EVE.
The incredible journey to build EVE Online's first Death Star (opens in new tab)
Like Titans, Citadels were once a rare sight in EVE Online—particularly the gargantuan Keepstars, a Death Star-sized space station that is 800,000 meters squared and sports a doomsday weapon that can obliterate entire fleets with the push of a button. Back in May of 2016, there was only one in existence. This is the story of how a group of merciless brigands banded together to launch a top secret operation to build it without anyone in the galaxy even knowing.
The life and death of EVE Online's first all-woman pirate gang (opens in new tab)
EVE Online is a game that historically appeals only to men, with 96 percent of its players describing themselves as male. So when Mynxee decided to form a kickass band of all-women pirates, it made waves among the community. Hellcats became famous for their raucous attitude and reckless flying, but behind the scenes this is a story of the enormous sacrifice it takes to be a leader.
EVE Online player fakes suicide attempt as part of an elaborate scheme for revenge and money (opens in new tab)
Most EVE players understand that the drama unfolding in-game is purely fictional, but once in a while those theatrics can spill over into real life with troubling implications. That's what happened when one player manipulated a mental health support group in EVE, faking a suicide attempt in order to exact revenge on a group of players they hated.
Meet EVE's search and rescue task force who will fly to the edge of space to save your ass (opens in new tab)
Of course, for every bad apple in EVE there's a person who will take time out of their day to find you in the deadly maze of wormhole space and save you. This is the story of Signal Cartel, a group of neutral explorers who have built a reputation by selflessly running search and rescue operations to the stranded pilots of New Eden.
EVE Online players have produced some incredible propaganda (opens in new tab)
Propaganda is a huge deal in EVE Online. It gives your soldiers something to fight for and a narrative to identify with. It can soften the blow of a defeat, or salt your enemies' wounds following a rushing victory. Naturally, EVE Online players have made some incredible propaganda over the years, and it is worth celebrating.