Saturday, August 14, 2010

Are We Having Fun Yet?

So -- Planetary Interaction.

When it was first announced, I resisted. Too much it reminded me of POS Reactions on Steroids - replete with spreadsheets, non-linear optimizations, OCD-fueled min-maxing, and brimming with a plethora of special interest magazines.

Then CONCORD cleared the way, a fleet of heavily-guarded construction ships appeared in our little w-space system to put up customs offices, several of my corp members plonked down their command centers, and started spending all of their time with spreadsheets, non-linear min-maxing, and long discussions whether ‘The New Colonial’ or ‘Planets!’ had the better market advice. But my smugness didn’t last long - it may have been one too many ‘You too could be a God!’ flyers, or one of the many multi-million ISK transfers I made to corp members in exchange for home-made POS fuel; either way, I broke down and started colonies as well.

Everything seemed to be going swell - our w-System wasn't exactly rich, but quite well populated with planets, the processors hummed along merrily; only my spreadsheets caused me worry because they refused to match what my colonies were producing. No worries, probably just a type somewhere - a bit of staring at the numbers, and the mistake would reveal itself.

And revealed it was: at some point I over-calculated the raw material extraction by factor 2.


As mistakes go, it was easily corrected, but now all my industrial facilities needed to be rejiggered. I was just putting together a new plan, when suddenly my terminal went dark.

Power Outage? Somebody put us into reinforced? We forgot to refuel the POS? No - the lights were still on, and I hadn’t noticed any explosions either.

I turned, and came face to face with Lance, one of our resident miners, who was holding my terminal’s power connector in his hand.

“Boss”, he drawled, “You have to stop staring at numbers. There’s a whole universe out there, full of adventure!”


“You’ve been cooped up here for a month! When was the last time you were in space?”


“And I don’t mean your daily confirmation that our known signatures didn’t move over night. Real space!”


He grinned. “C’mon, you know you want to. Our today’s neighbor has some juicy CAs - so how about you shoot, and I salvage? And afterwards we can pick up some Fullerenes on the way back.”

I glanced at the dark terminal, and then back at Lance. Of course he was right - it had been too long since I did some real flying.

“Damn you, Lance. Last one to the hangar is a short-limbed roe!”


Two hours later, our ships docked back at the POS. As we padded barefoot to the living areas, toweling off the last remains of the Pod juice, Lance punched me into the arm.

“Well, Boss, wasn’t that fun?”

Well, let’s see: most of my Harbinger’s equipment was now resting, slightly scorched, in a can in the main hangar; my Harbinger itself was a smoking wreck off an Oruze Node; my Apoc’s structure was held together only just so by its armor, with no repairer on hand; and our Fullerene mining had been cut short when a Cheetah with an unpronounceable name started poking its probes into our business. So, did I have fun?

“Oh yeah!”

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