Since we had lots of fun – and more success than we had anticipated too – in last year’s EVE Online Alliance Tournament we were very much hoping to get in again this year. While we ranked in the top 32 in the end, we would have needed to make it to the top 16 for a guaranteed spot.
We were in good heart though and started our training before registration results were in. Unfortunately training isn’t as smooth and easy as it was last year, what with the Thunderdome event server not being accessible by everybody, but after a while everyone had their stuff sorted on Singularity (EVE’s normal test server) and we got used to the limitations relatively quickly again. After all we had also started to train on Singularity last year, as Thunderdome was made available only about a month before feeder round if I remember correctly.
At the end of May registration results were announced, and we’re in. Yeah!
It isn’t all good news though, because there actually weren’t enough registrations to fill all 64 tournament spots. In comparison, last year there were so many applicants that 24 teams had to be weeded out in a preliminary feeder round. This time, not so much. On May 31st there still were 10 open spots. I assume that those are long taken by now, but it’s still a considerable drop in registrations from last year.
While the tournament was never an event that interested, let alone engaged the whole playerbase, I still can’t help asking myself if this is a sign that EVE as a whole might be truly in decline now. No, this isn’t an ‘EVE is dying’ post, but a ~40% drop within a year makes you wonder what’s up. Maybe it’s a late protest against CCP laying off most of their community team, CCP Logibro, the main dev behind the tournament for years, among them.
Anyway, we’ve been training and preparing as best we can because next weekend the game will be on! No feeder round this time, obviously, so we’re going right into the fray.
Our first match will be at 16:00 EVE time on Saturday, July 28th. Our opponent is Unspoken Alliance., whom I know nothing about. We’ll see how that goes. It’s double elimination format again, so if we win we stay in the winner’s bracket and fight another first round victor next, while if we lose we drop to loser’s bracket. From there one can still win the tournament, but one more loss and you’re out.
The biggest question this year is of course how much impact the Triglavian ships will have in the tournament’s meta. Those were added rather recently, and I was kinda surprised to see them already allowed for use by the official rules.
Here’s the full schedule if you’re interested. EVE_NT is partnering with CCP again to stream the tournament on CCP’s Twitch channel for your viewing pleasure. They did a pretty good job last time, and I’m looking forward to watch the other team’s matches.
Now, let’s see if we can snag a better medal than last year.