Nah, just kidding. That wouldn’t make for an interesting blogpost, would it?
I always wanted to attend EVE Online’s fanfest in Reykjavík, preferably combined with a trip around Iceland before or after the festivities. It never came to pass for various reasons however.
Hence, when CCP announced some time last year that there wouldn’t be a regular fanfest in 2019 I was pretty disappointed because I feared that my chance to go might have come and gone. After all, nobody but CCP knows the real reasons for the cancellation – the official one is that Harpa concert hall is/was being renovated – and I was a bit sceptical if there was going to be another fanfest in Reykjavík at all.
So what has any of this to do with Berlin?
Well, to compensate for the lack of a ‘real’ fanfest CCP decided to do a bunch of smaller events all around the globe, two of which not too far from where we live. So basically the only question was if would we make the trip to Amsterdam in March, or to Berlin in September. Amsterdam would have been the shorter drive, but since I had a football game on March 24th we would have missed at least part of the event. So G-Fleet in Berlin it was going to be.
Attending the first G-Fleet – in 2018, also in Berlin – didn’t cross my mind at the time, but the thought of not wanting to miss yet another chance to be at an EVE event had really took hold by now. Lakisa was all for it too, so we bought the tickets and booked a hotel within walking distance from the venue, the Game Science Center.
We decided to go by car because it’s much cheaper than a train ride for two. The journey out made us regret this somewhat because a truck accident ahead of us made the trip take almost nine hours instead of six. That’s Friday 13th for you I guess. We missed the opening ceremony due to that, according to our NC Dot comrades it was more like a little talk than a ceremony anyway though.
Speaking of whom, of course we had been looking forward to meet some of the folks we had only known by voice or even text up to then. Altogether there was a dozen of us, mostly from Germany and Great Britain, and we had a lot of fun.
We also talked to people from other corps and alliances, but I couldn’t tell you any names even if I wanted to. Everybody was really nice and the whole event felt pleasantly civilized despite copious amounts of alcohol being consumed. Even Goons weren’t angry that a couple of us stole…I’m sorry, captured the flag they had put up inside the venue, but that may have something to do with us giving it back to them later.
On late Friday evening a special G-Fleet issue of Spectre Fleet was being formed, and since a couple of PCs were still vacant Lakisa and I decided to tag along. It took a while to get everyone sorted with a ship and Discord access, but once we got going we were killing stuff in and around Tama in no time. Really expensive stuff too. A shame that we didn’t use our own characters.
There was also a 2vs2 PvP tournament. Each team was allowed to field one Tech I battlecruiser and one tactical destroyer. We watched most of those fights although it was quite hard to see exactly what was going on.
On Saturday we attended some of the presentations. The one I’d been looking forward to, Epic stories from the EVE universe by Andrew Groen, didn’t disappoint, but the one about Bomber’s Bar and another about a special kind of logistics division within Signal Cartel were cool too.
The show CCP themselves put on wasn’t really that great to be honest. Don’t get me wrong, I appreciate them being there and stuff, but my main takeaway, especially from the AMA on Friday, was a whole lot of “we have no idea” and “we can’t talk about that”.
Still, it was a cool event and worth it for the socializing alone. Oh, and for the swag of course.
I’m really happy that we managed to snag those Quafe cans, but the other stuff is pretty nice too. The USB stick contains Andrew Groen’s first book Empires of EVE, of which I already have the physical version, but it’s cool to also have it in PDF format now. The gift-card’s code was redeemed for a set of three ingame SKINs:
So yeah, would do again.
By now we know that there will in fact be a fanfest in Iceland next year after all, from April 2nd to 5th. Since G-Fleet was really fun I’d like to go more than ever now, but we’ll see.