Skip to content. | Skip to navigation

Personal tools

Navigation

Internet Spaceships Are Serious Business

An EVE Online Reader

2016

Marcus Carter, Kelly Bergstrom, and Darryl Woodford, Editors

Internet Spaceships Are Serious Business

The first sustained analysis of the hugely successful and complex MMOG, EVE Online

EVE Online is a socially complex, science-fiction-themed universe simulation and massively multiplayer online game (MMOG) first released in 2003. In this fascinating book, scholars, players, and EVE’s developer CCP Games examine the intricate world of EVE Online—providing authentic accounts of lived experience within a game with more than a decade of history and millions of “real” dollars behind it.

Internet Spaceships Are Serious Business is one of the most comprehensive collections of works on EVE Online ever produced, but written in language that is accessible to the uninitiated reader. It captures a side of EVE that is often lost in academic writings, and each chapter stands as a snapshot in time of one of the world’s most unique and well-studied massively multiplayer online games.

Brendan Drain, MMO expert

EVE Online is a socially complex, science-fiction-themed universe simulation and massively multiplayer online game (MMOG) first released in 2003. Notorious for its colossal battles and ruthless player culture, it has hundreds of thousands of players today. In this fascinating book, scholars, players, and EVE’s developer (CCP Games) examine the intricate world of EVE Online—providing authentic accounts of lived experience within a game with more than a decade of history and millions of “real” dollars behind it.

Internet Spaceships Are Serious Business features contributions from outstanding EVE Online players, such as The Mittani, an infamous member of the game’s community, as well as academics from around the globe. They cover a wide range of subjects: the game’s technicalities and its difficulty; its projection of humanity’s future in space; the configuration of its unique, single-server game world; the global nature of warfare in its “nullsec” territory (and how EVE players have formed a global concept of time); stereotypes of Russian players; espionage play; in-game memorials to Vile Rat (aka U.S. State Department official Sean Smith, murdered in the 2012 Benghazi attack); its gendered playing experience; and CCP Games’ relationship with players; and its history and legacy.

Internet Spaceships Are Serious Business is a must for EVE Online players interested in a broad perspective on their all-consuming game. It is also accessible to scholars, game designers and even those who have never played this notoriously complex game: there is a glossary of EVE Online terms and a chapter introducing the game.

Contributors: William Sims Bainbridge, National Science Foundation; Chribba; Jedrzej Czarnota; Kjartan Pierre Emilsson; Dan Erdman; Rebecca Fraimow; Martin R. Gibbs, U of Melbourne; Catherine Goodfellow; Kathryn Gronsbell; Keith Harrison; Kristin MacDonough; Mantou (Zhang Yuzhou); Oskar Milik; The Mittani (Alexander Gianturco); Joji Mori; Richard Page; Christopher Paul, Seattle U; Erica Titkemeyer, U of North Carolina at Chapel Hill; Nick Webber, Birmingham City U.

Internet Spaceships Are Serious Business

Marcus Carter is a research fellow in the Microsoft Research Centre for Social Natural User Interfaces at the University of Melbourne.

Kelly Bergstrom is a postdoctoral researcher at York University.

Darryl Woodford is is a visiting fellow with the Digital Media Research Centre and the Creative Industries Faculty at Queensland University of Technology.

Internet Spaceships Are Serious Business

Internet Spaceships Are Serious Business is one of the most comprehensive collections of works on EVE Online ever produced, but written in language that is accessible to the uninitiated reader. It captures a side of EVE that is often lost in academic writings, and each chapter stands as a snapshot in time of one of the world’s most unique and well-studied massively multiplayer online games.

Brendan Drain, MMO expert

A book as unique as EVE itself—it will make you think, help you understand a game you may never play, and afford a glimpse onto a less traveled byway of the gaming universe. The roster of authors is delightfully varied, with contributions from archivists, developers, players, PhD students, and researchers, broadening inquiry into a thoughtful, engaging treatment of a cherished game.

Bonnie Nardi, author of My Life as a Night Elf Priest: An Anthropological Account of “World of Warcraft”*

By addressing everything from collaboration to conflict, from economics to embodiment, the authors of Internet Spaceships Are Serious Business use the specific case study of EVE Online to investigate how emerging digital technologies reshape selfhood and society.

Tom Boellstorff, author of Coming of Age in Second Life: An Anthropologist Explores the Virtually Human

Internet Spaceships Are Serious Business

Contents
Glossary of EVE Online Jargon
Introduction
Marcus Carter, Kelly Bergstrom, and Darryl Woodford
1. EVE Online for the Uninitiated
Kelly Bergstrom and Marcus Carter
2. EVE Online Is Hard and It Matters
Christopher Paul
3. Virtual Interstellar Travel
William Sims Bainbridge
4. Universes, Metaverses, and Multiverses
Kjartan Pierre Emilsson
5. The Digital Grind: Time and Labor as Resources of War in EVE Online
Oskar Milik
6. The Russians Are Coming! Stereotypes and Perceptions of “Russianness” in EVE Online
Catherine Goodfellow
7. The Art of Selling Trust
Chribba
8. We Play Something Awful: Goon Projects and Pervasive Practice on Online Games
Richard Page
9. The Accidental Spymaster
Keith Harrison
10. The Evolution of Player Organizations: A Goonswarm Perspective
The Mittani (Alexander Gianturco)
11. RIP Vile Rat: Makeshift Memorials in EVE Online
Martin R. Gibbs, Marcus Carter, and Joji Mori
12. Imagined Capsuleers: Reframing Discussions about Gender and EVE Online
Kelly Bergstrom
13. The Social System in EVE Online
Mantou (Zhang Yuzhou)
14. Do EVE Online Players Dream of Icelandic Spaceships? The Role and Mechanisms of Co-creation in CCP’s Success
Jedrzej Czarnota
15. EVE Online as History
Nick Webber
16. On the EVE of Preservation: Conserving a Complex Universe
Kristin MacDonough, Rebecca Fraimow, Dan Erdman, Kathryn Gronsbell, and Erica Titkemeyer
Contributors
Index