Eve Online battle sees $200,000 worth of ships being destroyed

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A gigantic battle that took place in the video game Eve Online resulted $200,000 worth of ships being lost (destroyed).

Eve Online is a science fiction massively multiplayer online roleplaying game (MMORPG). Players take control of ships and use them to do anything from trading to piracy, and while it is known for having a steep learning curve, the game has also become famous for the amount of real world money that can be won and lost if a ship is destroyed.

If you don’t understand how Eve Online battles can cost money, let me explain. Do you know how in FarmVille — and many video games on mobile — you can pay real money to purchase in-game items? The idea with Eve Online is similar, except it is more of a two-way street: Eve Online in-game money can be sold for real dollars vis-a-vis a conversion rate… just like how you convert one currency to another. Thus, a ship has, say, $500 value because it can be sold for in-game money equivalent of $500.

This particular battle, battle, which involved more than 2,200 players and resulted in $200,000 actual money being lost, actually started off as a bit of a fluke too. This is according to Alexander Gianturco, who is the CEO of Goonswarm Federation, a faction in Eve online.

“Today’s battle happened literally by accident: system control (sovereignty) was dropped in a key staging system due to a mistake,” Gianturco said to Polygon. “This then escalated into the largest battle in Eve history, which delightfully our forces seem to be winning. This is a bigger battle in terms of the hardware and players involved though there’s less raw numbers in a single system — this fight is over multiple systems.”

The complete results haven’t been tallied yet, but considering the fact that a single Titan, which is a capital class ship, can sometimes be worth as much money as $5,000 dollars… yeah, well, video gaming has never been so expensive before, eh?

[via Polygon, The Verge, image via Psycho Al's flickr]

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6 comments

  1. Ed

    Making money in the game by doing certain things to buy stuff or extend your playing time is one thing but …..

    What confuses me is why anyone would spend real world TANGABLE money for something that is INTANGABLE, your not getting anything and from what I understand in this game is that if you get into a skirmish you can lose it all …. LMAO!

    I would really like to be the person that came up with this and convinced people to spend real money for “virtual”ly nothing!

    It cracks me up every time I go to some department stores and supermarkets and you pass by the prepaid Farmville bucks cards, and I laugh even harder when I actually see someone purchase one, two or twenty, some people are so gullible.

  2. markh777

    In response to what Ash said….you only pay around $15 us dollars a month to play…in game you can run missions, mine asteroids and build items, ships, structures and make isk (in game money, think gold like in rpg games) which can accumulate over time. If one was to mission/mine/build for many hours per day/week/month you could make enough to buy a PLEX….this can be bought in game and be used to extend your time by 1 month or…you can sell them in game for much isk or out of game for real world money hence the actual real world dollars shown in the article. Hope that clears things up a tad bit.

  3. Ashraf
    Mr. Boss

    [@Mike S.] Well it isn’t quite a waste of real world money. It isn’t like these people put in that whole $200,000, because you earn in-game money (which correlates to real money, via conversion rates) by playing the game. The value of the destroyed objects is $200,000 (aka, if sold, they could have made that money) but that amount wasn’t really spent on the objects — probably only a fraction of real money went into those ships.

  4. markh777

    I play this game often but am more into the PVE aspect of it..I have friends in Goonswarm (why they ever joined them is beyond me) and occaisonally I PVP when someone irks me…lol…..I have been up close and personal to a Titan class ship and believe me they are huge…this battle was huge but on a daily basis there are wee smaller battles taking place all over