EVE Online Riots Where Thousands of Fans Burned Their In-Game Money

EVE Online’s latest slate of updates, “New Dawn”, promised to bring with it a return to an age of prosperity to the game’s universe. Alongside the first patch of the new quadrant came a Nov. 12th Developer Blog detailing how CCP, the developer behind the game, planned on delivering that new age. However, rather than the rejoicing of the beleaguered community, the initial reaction from players was one of anger and pent-up frustration being unleashed in the form of in-game riots. Thousands of player characters swarmed the game’s primary trade hub, the Jita star-system and spent hours shooting an invulnerable monument with lasers, bullets, and fireworks, causing the system to be locked in simulated lag called time dilation, or tidi, all throughout that weekend as players vented their rage.

Shooting the monument in Jita is something of a tradition at this point to EVE players, and the invulnerable structure has taken the brunt of player anger for years since its creation. Originally, the monument was added to the game to memorialize the players who completed a riddle contest posed by the game’s development team. The riddles were steeped in obscure EVE lore, but the game’s fanatical fans managed to solve them all in a mere twelve hours. For their efforts, they were rewarded with their names being immortalized in space next to the game’s primary trade hub, Jita 4-4. In the aftermath of player outrage surrounding the Incarna update and the monetization practices it contained, thousands of players traveled to Jita to send a message, “We’d rather burn our money on shooting an indestructible statue than participate in a real money economy.”

This incident, along with others surrounding it, were eventually dubbed “The Summer of Rage” by fans. In its aftermath, CCP changed the path the game was taking, addressed player concerns, and updated the monument to reflect player actions. It was replaced with a broken, smoldering version of itself, enshrining the riot in EVE history and serving as a reminder to the community and developers alike.

It would seem that all things are cyclical, as the monument once again became the focal point of player rage in the wake of the New Dawn developer blog. Once again, thousands of players made their way to Jita and launched an all out assault on the ruined structure. Players reported seeing drastically different numbers in the system, with some seeing upwards of six thousand individual characters logged into the system, engaging in the protests, either shooting the monument or sitting in the station firing words instead of ammunition into the chat channels. Others reported lower numbers in the three to four thousand range. Sæmundur Hermannsson, Brand Director for EVE Online told Kotaku during an interview that the numbers players saw were likely attributed to a bug in the games chat function. The Jita system is so important to the player experience, that it is hard capped at four thousand people to prevent lag from stalling out the market hub and crippling the games economy.

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