Eve is a vast place. Sometimes, events outside our control cause us to break ties from current allegiances. When this happens and we are thrown back to an NPC Corp, feeling lost and demotivated are common. Regardless of what happened, getting connected with a new social circle in the game to have a more complete experience can be a daunting task. When I find myself in this position, I think to myself, “This is a fresh start. Eve, inspire me.”
The first and perhaps most important question to answer is this: What do you want to get out of the game? The answer seems simple but most potential new recruits obviously cannot answer this since they seem to always be in a corp where things just don’t go as planned. Let’s elaborate on this question a little more.
Eve is a sandbox MMO. With that, if you needed to make something a priority, would you rather participate more on the social aspects of the game or would you rather align yourself with a group that has well defined goals and methods of achieving them? I’ve found it difficult to find a corp that can execute well on those aspects simultaneously.
Social corps are just that. Often, these groups run the gamut of skill point levels from out of the box new bro to grizzled veterans from beta. The defining characteristic of this group is that they honestly just want to have a fun time socializing. Think of it as your local neighborhood pub that just happens to be online. In regards to in-game progression, you will probably find little to no sense of this within the group culture since that is not why they are there. Members are more than likely busy individuals in real life, using Eve as a way to relax for the day, and are not focused on “winning” in this incredibly competitive arena.
“Be wary of corps advertising that they do everything.”
What you will meet at the other end of the spectrum is the goal-driven organization. Regardless of whether it is a PvE- or PvP-oriented group, the overall culture is similar. The goal is progression at the individual pilot and organizational level. Eve is played more seriously here. Efficiency matters, regardless of how it is actually quantified. In order to assist in the progression goals, out of game tools are often employed. The organization’s in game social network of blues and reds are more diverse than purely casual ones. Before jumping into a group like this, be aware that you need to pull your own weight. You need to be of some tangible use to the organization in order for the group to move on to the next level.
Once you’ve identified the corp culture that will best suit your in game needs, the next thing to consider would be the scope of activities of the potential corp you will be joining. Are you interested in joining a group that “does everything”? Or are you more interested in joining a corp that specializes in a particular activity such as industry or pvp?
The first alliance I was a part of several years ago was a ‘do-everything’ alliance. One day, I commented to my CEO how impressed I was that the alliance does everything in the game. He quickly replied, “Don’t be too impressed. We do everything because we can’t do one thing really well.” I was very surprised by his comment – but in time, I saw the value in his words.
Be wary of corps advertising that they do everything in game. They may do industry and pvp within the corp, but how frequently, and at what specific scope? Eve is simply too big to be doing everything, especially if you don’t have the numbers to back up that claim. One corp member doing solo belt mining doesn’t constitute an industry corp. Having a handful of kills and losses on the kill board doesn’t make it a pvp corp either. Although mostly a recruitment advertisement strategy, there is still value in corps like these; they might be a good opportunity for you to dabble in parts of the game that you have not had a chance to try yet.
“You might want to consider starting one of your own.”
Activity-driven corps make it much easier to gauge whether they will be a good fit for you or not. If you are interested in PvP, join a PvP corp; if you prefer industry, join an industrial corp. However, the space these types of corps reside in might give you a better idea if that type of activity is something you would find fun in the first place.
Low-sec PvP corps work very differently from wormhole-based pvp corps. Using the same line of reasoning, high-sec industrial corps offer vastly different activities from nullsec industrial corps. Remember to take these into consideration when choosing your next corp. Be aware of the advantages and limitations of the various types of space in the game and your level of experience with them.
After some soul searching, if you have still not found a new corp to join, you might want to consider starting one of your own. If you have some friends that enjoy the same things in the game as you, then why not give it a shot? You of all people can best determine the type of fun and level of involvement in the game that’s right for you. Be true to yourself and what you wish to accomplish. More often than not, this is actually enough to attract new recruits to your cause.
If you do go down this path, remember what caused you to leave your previous corps. Do your best to avoid making the same mistakes. Be supportive of your membership – they are, after all, what makes the corp in the first place.
Corporation recruitment in EVE is a lot like a real life transaction; each party has needs that should be met. Don’t be afraid to value your time and participation in an organization as much as the organization should value your presence there. Fly safe.