I started this article as a response to a post over at We Fly Spitfires’ blog, where in the comments many folks were implying that one really needs to be in a Corp. to have fun, or fully appreciate the EVE Online experience. Which, of course, I don’t fully agree.
I guess it could be true if you’re really into constant PvP, watching your back, and political intrigue. I love occasional PvP, or what I call PvP on MY terms, like DAoC and WAR RvR. And to a certain extent, EVE’s semi-open PvP with consequences, where firing on neutral targets in Empire space has definite worldly consequences – like Concord Aggression and faction standings. You certainly do not need to be in a corp. if you’re looking to PvP once in awhile. However, if you are in a low-sec/zero-zero corp. you will persistently be in PvP mode simply due to war declarations. Me? I don’t need that kind of stress. I’ve got enough of that IRL.
I haven’t been in an active corp/alliance since Frege (2-3 years ago, about the same time StateCorp was in Frege). And when it fell apart, it basically cured me of any long term desires to be in a corp/alliance. Plus all of the guys I played with basically “futility quit” after the dismemberment of Frege.
For me, it’s just too much like real-life work to participate/manage a corp. with my preferred “casual/care-bear” gaming mechanic. Of which I can partake of aplenty in Concord Space, making tons of ISK and taking out the occasional “red flashy” guy with my tri-box posse. And the occasional foray out to low-sec just to blast someone on my grudge list, as long as they’re not too far out of the way.
If there were a way to do casual 0.0 (which there isn’t, honestly) I’d probably find myself back in a Corp.
But truly, you only need a corp. if you’re interested in continual PvP and politics, just two facets of an extraordinary game. You don’t need a corp to mine, play the market, craft, run missions, offer services (like hauling, protection, etc), occasionally PvP, etc.
However, I’ve always approached the social side of MMO’s as optional, with a take it or leave it attitude – and usually it’s been a “leave it” choice for me. But for others it’s an absolute “must have,” so if one finds that aspect important, then they’ll probably need to be in a corp. as well. Personally, as an INTP personality, I usually find other people to be more of a liability than an asset :D