The inhabitants of the EVE Online universe shape their own destiny and create an incredible rich environment which is filled with the most amazing events and stories. To even summarize the myriads of exciting happenings and the endless stream of adventures, reports, anecdotes, plotting, drama and legends together with discussions about game mechanics and game ideas seems to be an impossible task.
The EVE Community in their wonderful passion and creativity however took up that challenge and succeeded by creating numerous excellent interconnected discussions, blogs and a whole blogging community on their own.
It is time to take a closer look at this incredible world of blogs, the EVE Blog Pack and Seismic Stan with the Blog Banter.
An Insider’s view
If the EVE Online universe were a themed nightclub filled with beautiful but wild people, then the myriad of EVE blogs spread across the internet are the clubbers who have popped out onto the street for a smoke or just for a break. Potential patrons can hear what they're chatting about and might be tempted to investigate (although if they see the black eyes and missing teeth they'll likely go in tooled-up or demand to be shown to the mythical VIP section where there's no fighting).
In any case, the CCP doormen will gladly take their coats and usher them inside where they'll either have the time of their lives or die trying. Maybe some of them will pop out later for a chat and become EVE bloggers too.
The EVE blogging community is a peerless network of hundreds of EVE enthusiasts who regularly document everything they love (and hate) about their EVE Online experience. No other MMO has such a passionate and driven bloc of writing talent who constantly produce content which inspires discussions, provides guides, creates events and offers gameplay advice. The freedom of writing content from their own websites means that bloggers can speak their minds and deliver an honest and direct account of their perspectives and explore topics to a greater depth than is generally found on forums.
Each of the many bloggers are essentially ambassadors for EVE Online in the digital world beyond the client. Browsing through the hundreds of sites available will show that every playstyle is represented, offering content and discourse on the many aspects of EVE, from ship fittings and combat tactics to social commentary and fan fiction. There are Factional Warfare specialists who provide invaluable orientation guides for rookies, wormhole industrialists who share detailed accounts of their adventures, fleet commanders who give blow-by-blow reports of their recent engagements and pirates who gloat over their ill-gotten gains.
Taking the blogging community as a whole, it could be said that it is a living guidebook, updated daily by an army of researchers. The blogs also serve to provide a great social entry point for players looking to discover a new playstyle and get in contact with the people who are already in the thick of it.
The Blog Harvest
With the blog community constantly evolving, it is almost impossible for even the most avid of blog followers to keep track. Most blogs grow through community engagement and by word-of-mouth, but new and existing bloggers alike are encouraged to register with the following sites to help readers track down the content they're looking for.
EVE Online Fansite Programme: The official EVE Online listing includes amongst other useful sites links to some of the many blogs available, but currently the design and layout is a little out of date and awaits an overhaul and update.
EVE-Bloggers.com: Many blogs are registered with EVE-Bloggers, which serves as a handy one-stop shop for all the latest blogs as well as CCP and player-written news sites and other relevant material. New posts are automatically displayed for ease of browsing. This player-run service will be getting a facelift soon and will feature more content and community features.
EVE Blogs OPML: Probably the most complete listing of all known EVE blogs and at time of writing currently lists 746 blogs (although not all are active). EVE Blogs OPML is hosted by Cognitive Industries.
The individual blogs themselves exist within an intricate network of links, with each blog often displaying a list of their favorite reads in the sidebar. Essentially, once you've found one EVE blog, you've found them all (if you're prepared to get lost in a maze of hyperlinks). It really is a labyrinthine and beguiling world that exists beyond the EVE client but is very much a part of the “Nation of EVE”.
Many smartphone, tablet and PC apps are available which enable the user to download RSS feeds (which every blog outputs) and create their own custom EVE magazine featuring their favorite bloggers. Failing that there's always the trusty bookmark.
The Word of Spaceships
Beyond the individual blogs, the wider EVE writing network has a lot to offer, with regular community-wide Blog Banters encouraging the cross-pollination of ideas and readership. When this Community Spotlight is published we rapidly approach the incredible amount of 40 Blog Banters with hundreds of blog entries in total.
The Blog Banters encourages in a long running tradition the whole Blogosphere to discuss the big issues of EVE Online and the EVE culture on a monthly basis. With a fixed topic for each Banter, Blog writers can begin to elaborate their ideas and discuss their point of view. The result of these banters is a focused, constructive and clever conversation between EVE Bloggers. This conversation exceeds the depth and intensity of regular forums discussions by far and the summary of the Banters includes every participant's voice.
Currently the Blog Banters are hosted on Freebooted and maintained by Seismic Stan. Seismic Stan is a prominent and well-known person in the EVE Blogosphere and beyond; special thanks go to him for this enthusiastic support of the EVE Community and his research regarding this Community Spotlight.
Entering the Circle
For bloggers who want something else to aim for, or indeed for occasional writers who don't feel the urge to start their own blog, there are several player-run news sites which are always looking for written contributions of a particular quality.
So whether you're looking for some spaceship-flavoured reading material to pass the time whilst you haul, mine or wait for the server to come back up, or if you want to flex your quill with some wordsmithing of your own, come take a look - the writing metaverse of EVE is waiting for you!