I know this might sound weird, but I believe your relationship with EVE Online Corporations is sort of like relationships with people in real life.
When meeting a new love, at first you may have this overwhelming feeling of passion. Everything is new and exciting. You want to spend as much time with them as possible and get to know everything about them. Your EVE life in general changes completely. You are willing to move to new places, fly new ships, go out of your way to please and help the corporation.
Then reality sets in. You start seeing flaws that you previously overlooked. The fresh passion and excitement is no longer there, and so you have to decide whether you love them enough to stay in the relationship and make it work, or whether to move on to something new.
So here is how I view some of these EVE Corp Relationships:
First love / Highschool sweethearts
Even though it obviously didn't last, these are the relationships that you still look back on with nostalgia.
You might even still have in your Bio written something like, "Proud ex-member of so and so Corp/Alliance".
My first Eve-love was NQX Innovations. They introduced me to PVP, and I learnt so much from them and fell in love with the game more that I ever thought I could. Even though we've parted ways, I still hang out in their chat channels and post in their forums. I've met a few of these guys in real life, and are friendships that will last.
The relationship to the corp was addictive and intoxicating, yet possibly destructive. EVE was never the same way again. You may have been: yelled at in Fleet Ops, ridiculed and bullied mercilessly on the killboards and forums for flying badly fitted ships, and may never have felt good enough to be a part of the group. It may have traumatized you, but in the end, you became a better pvp'er for it all.
To me such a corp was Genos Occidere. People often ask why I've left the corp (since it does have a bit of an "elite" reputation). My answer is pretty much this. Being an European Timezone corp, I found myself so addicted to the hard and fast pvp, that I was staying up all odd hours in order to go out on roams with them (thus not very healthy on my RL). I learnt so much from them, and they are indeed amongst the very best players in the whole game, and it was a priviledge. But in the end, I needed a corp that was more down-to-earth and in which the pvp fitted around my schedule and preference (I wanted to be in Factional Warfare, not 0.0).
- Disclaimer - Any Genos people reading this please don't take offense. I love you all and still think you're the best. Please don't hunt me down or I'll get a restraining order (hire Noir. mercs) on you.
The rebound corps, summer flings, one night stands. You may have just come out of a difficult break-up, and all you want is to have fun, nothing serious. You want to try new things. To re-spark your love for EVE Online.
For me, this was Red vs Blue and the Federal Defense Union (Gallente Militia/npc corp).
They represent non-commitment. You can solo, do your own thing, no one cares. No mandatory ops, nothing serious.
If it does start to get too serious, or anything about them rubs you the wrong way, you just leave. Nice and easy, no one will even care or miss you. They can be lots of fun, or full of regret (maybe you'll lose a lot of isk with so much pvp), but mainly they are just there to take away the loneliness of being single (i.e. in an NPC corp). Soon enough hopefully you can move on and find someone you really care about and want to commit to.
Love and Commitment
You have become wiser in choosing a mate, you have a checklist of requirements they must fulfill before you go ahead and let yourself fall head over heels for them.
And so you find a nice respectable corp, and decide you'll make the most of it. They may not perfect and there may not be passion and sparks all the time, but they treat you well and there is mutual love and respect.
To me, my current corp is like this. I came across Bi-Polar Bears at a time after I'd been roaming around alone in Factional Warfare, and they took me in and gave me a home. They're full of mature players, all with busy RL's (spouses, kids etc) and they can kick back and have a good time without too much srsbssns stuff. Well, at least not in my timezone (i.e. quiet AU/late U.S tz).
They pretty much let me be free and do whatever I want. Most of them are -10 pies, but they don't mind that I'm not. They also have a fascination with Zealots and RR gangs, whereas I pretty much only fly T1 ships and only own 1 RR Battleship (which I never use, but keep out of respect to the corp rules). But they don't try to change me and just let me be who I am.
So far I'm happy with them. There's nothing to complain about, they're really nice guys and great pvp'ers. I'm just not sure if I'll get the seven-year itch one day... Maybe I should've signed a prenup?
True Love / Soul Mates
Sometimes I look at some people's Employment Histories, and see that they have been in the same corp all their EVE life. Some of these, since EVE first started in 2003!
I admire these corp relationships, it's like looking at old couples holding hands. You know that they are so committed to each other, and still very much in love. It's rare, but it does happen.
In many cases, when it comes to EVE Online though, the people that stay in those corps for years and years are often the very CEO's and founders of the corp. This makes total sense because if you really want a corp with people that:
- Plays in the same timezone as you
- Does the same activities as you
- Speak the same language
- Always live in the area of space as you want to live
- In all ways fulfills the same ideals that you have in EVE Online
Then you pretty much have to start your own Corp.
To the brave, stubborn, egotistical and persevering individuals out there that do this, may you live happily ever after in marital bliss!
Question for my readers:
Tell me what kind of relationship you have with your corp! What do you look for, and what do you expect to give and get from the relationship?