There are few games with a relationship between players and devs quite like EVE Online. EVE's playerbase is known to be cut-throat and competitive, while also being devoted to the title, and its developer is known to foster the unique community of EVE Online as best it can. The result is a game that mixes the civilized with the wild west, where players will start an enormous inter-player war, but put it on hold for the holidays.
Players have a much greater impact on the game than in many other titles, MMORPG or otherwise. Many of the most important events in EVE Online are player-driven, as is essentially the game's whole economy. That doesn't mean the developer, CCP Games, is completely hands off though, and it just released an update to help players create Fleets easier.
The new Reign update dropped as EVE Online's first Quadrant of 2021. For those unfamiliar, EVE Online goes through updates grouped into a series of four Quadrants over the course of a year, with all updates in a Quadrant relating to each other before the next Quadrant shifts the game's landscape. Last year, the final Quadrant's Phoenix update reshaped the EVE Online galaxy. The Reign update opens 2021 with the Fleet Up tool, which lets players put out the call for a specific kind of Fleet, or specify which kind of Fleet they want to join. The tool then matches what players are looking for to what's out there, almost like a job finding site.
The Fleet Up tool is designed to give players more control over how they put together Fleets, something invaluable in EVE Online. Like many things in EVE Online, this kind of organization has been handled solely by players up until now, and they've done a good job. CCP Games makes a habit of working with players, not against them, so it's likely this tool will prove beneficial, even if it turns out to be redundant for systems that players have in place already. Just like the recent EVE Online Partnership Program, it's designed to help players do what they love, and they will surely take advantage.
When properly coordinated, fleets in EVE Online are capable of impressive feats. The recent New Year's Battle proved to be the most expensive in EVE Online's history, breaking two world records. A good part of this was because of the coordination made possible by Fleets.
Before that, the current conflict in EVE Online resulted in two other, completely different world records being broken during the same war. It's definitely a great time to be an EVE Online player, and odds are that wars will not cool down for some time, and the Fleet Up tool will see some good use.
It has been a busy year for many, and busier than most for EVE Online players. It's been an exciting time to play the game, for more reasons than just the recent double Guinness World Record achievements.
If any game could be said to be almost run by its players, it would be EVE Online. The recent record breaking was the result of a player-driven war that's been going on for a few months. Beyond that, a major storyline wrapped up in the game, changing the very nature of EVE's map. Amid all of that, EVE Online players have been doing their part to help fight COVID-19.