If you’re someone for whom sci-fi video games are a passion, then you’ve probably played the award-winning MMORPG EVE Online at least once or twice over the years. Something of an anomaly in the gaming field, EVE is over ten years old, but more popular than ever, thanks to a steady stream of expansion packs and patches. The game features a ridiculously large universe for players to battle in, and part of its ongoing appeal lies in the thriving internal economy and ability to create highly advanced, expensive spaceships to use in the game.
One player, who goes by the name TSID, the owner and virtual operator of The Revanent, recently saw his pride and joy go up in smoke after falling victim to an enormous ambush. But nobody’s feelings got hurt because it’s just a video game, right? Not exactly.
The Revenant was one of only three ships that size in the game, and is worth a virtual total of 309 billion ISK (Interstellar Kredits), which equals out to roughly $9,000. There’s no telling how much time and effort went into creating the spaceship, but it only took a few minutes to turn it into a memory.
You might think TSID would have been on the lookout for major attacks like this, but the trap was definitely sneakier than your average offensive. For months, a user named Bandwidthh led in-game collective Pandemic Legion into numerous different battles. They emerged victorious from all of these encounters, but instead of an honorable warrior, Bandwidthh turned out to be a vicious traitor. He amassed a large number of ships, including The Revenant and a slew of other supercarriers, to respond to what everyone thought was a distress signal. Instead, the fleet flew right into the open arms of a rival faction lying in wait with their own armada.
Before long the dust settled, and The Revenant and nine other large ships were destroyed. I still get mad when I lose my double ships on Galaga, so I can’t imagine the amount of cursing and hellraising I would get into after going through this. I’d probably have to surf the Internet on a computer with a beer bottle-shaped hole in the monitor. Take a peek at the video below, depicting the event, and give a listen to the intense comm chatter that follows.
This isn’t the first time this year that EVE Online has seen something this large scale. At the beginning of the month, a traitorous alliance leader destroyed his team from the inside, stealing somewhere between 250 and 400 billion ISK as he fled to join an opposing alliance. And earlier this year, a simple mistake led to what’s arguably the b<\a href=http://www.tor.com/blogs/2013/01/eve-online-2800-spaceships-clash-costing-over-thousands-of-dollars>biggest event in video game history, where a battle that involved 3,200 players and 2,800 ships caused an estimated $150,000 in damages to player-created properties.
Moral of the story? No idea. Don’t trust leaders you haven’t met in real life? That seems fitting.