Monday, May 19, 2014

The Blog is moving to a new site!

It's finally happened! I've gotten the website up over at
There will be some subtle changes to the site as I move forward, but the format I've moved to will allow those changes to be (hopefully) seamless.

You'll also notice that the format hints to different sections such as Articles and Guides, and has plenty of room for potential future content sections. This is not an accident, and I happily invite anyone who would like to contribute content of any kind to do so. Send me an EVEmail, or a mail to and we'll get it done.


Tuesday, April 8, 2014

My CSM9 Picks

Fourteen is a hell of a lot to pick and I must have switched my list around ten times. Personally, I think there are some incredibly interesting candidates for CSM this time and choosing my top 6 was tough - let alone 14! I should have stopped at 9 but was determined to do them all.


Friday, March 28, 2014

Brave Voices

It's tough to take a stance on a sensitive issue. I knew the moment I said a single word that I'd come under a wee bit of fire. I knew that if I was going to open the door, I'd have to be prepared to defend my position with friends and foes alike. For instance, I like Funky Bacon and follow him on Twitter. That said, he and I heavily traded blows on the topic of Erotica 1. Trust me, I cringed every time I argued with someone on this because I absolutely understood where they were coming from (well, except the trolls).

Thursday, March 27, 2014

The Airlock

In case you've been in a hole all day, there's been a bit of an uproar because of current CSM member Ripard Teg's blog post concerning the current culture in the EVE online community. Ripard uses an example - and a prime pick, I might add - to argue his case that we're sorely in need of a change. To rein in the 'evil' perception of the game. The example he used is none other than one of Erotica1's "Bonus Room" soundcloud postings where he and his friends mentally torture another player. Go read the blog, and listen to the recording. I'll wait. I'll go make a sandwich... you'll be at least 2 hours to finish listening to it.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Staying Classy and Being BRAVE

This is a straight follow-up post from my previous one. I had mentioned putting an alt in BNI last fall and subsequently my entire corp re-rolled to join them. So, why did we decide to join them instead of simply getting rich off flipping goods into their market? Well, because, ultimately these folks shocked us. By being classy.

Even their propaganda seemed oddly free of cursing...
From the moment my "extra" alt (a 15 million SP character at the time) got set up in Barleguet and now had a BNI ticker attached to him, it was non stop fun. The Defense Fleet was up almost 24 hours a day with constant threats of small gangs in the home systems. Roams of every kind - from mining ops to null roams to wormhole dives to large warfare - were constantly up. The market in the HQ was amazingly stable and active for such a deep Lowsec pocket. Hundreds of Alliance-only contracts were always available, providing everything from cheap tacklers to doctrine Battle Cruisers. But, most importantly, the culture shock was what sold me. Brave Collective wasn't an alliance that "stayed classy" on the surface for propaganda reasons or simply paid lip service to the phrase. It truly stayed classy in all aspects of the alliance culture.

Classiness is catching on everywhere, btw.

Let me give you an example of what I mean when I say "classy". With a constant stream of players joining, it was common in their comms for someone to drop a bigoted stereotype. You know the kind I mean. The kind of crude attempt at humor that many of us attribute to the comms in Sov Power Blocs or any other large Alliance in EVE. Phrases such as "I'm broke - I'm gonna go j*wing with my Buzzard."; "I just popped this n**ger"; and any number of other more ugly sayings, gifs, and the such. But in Brave, the moment this type of language is uttered it is quickly stomped out. 

Now, let me stop you here and explain something: I was raised in rural Illinois. Cornfield and cow country. After growing up with a red neck among country folk, I'm numb to most stereotyping. I don't agree with it and I find it to be embedded in ignorance. But, I also understand that it's deeply rooted in our history to the point where a person may not believe in the stereotype itself, but doesn't grasp why it is not culturally acceptable to make jokes or ironically use the sensitive terms in a crude fashion. Usually, the person doesn't quite understand the power these words have to anyone who is affected by them, or they are so used to having them in their vocabulary that the deep meaning of the word is completely missing in their mind. Trust me, I get that. And, as someone who took literally years of training to stop using the word 'gay' to mean 'not right' (thanks to my gay childhood friend Aaron for smacking me every time he heard me say it), I am a little sympathetic when someone gets flamed hard for doing what I used to do. Hatred begets hatred and rarely will it correct the problem.

Yah, sort of what I meant, Yoda. 

The first time I can remember hearing it happen in Brave comms was when a player was rambling a story along and said "...and we were just about to kill him when the f*g entered warp". And let me tell you, the moment that word was uttered, comms erupted with exasperated WHOA!'s and HEY!'s. I held my breath to see what would happen as that poor guy has just obviously committed a big no-no. Would they kick the poor bastard? Ream his ass? Mock him?

One voice (with priority speaker to stomp on everyone's transmission) calmly, but authoritatively, said "Hey bud, just a friendly reminder to keep it classy on comms. We don't use that language, okay?" Wait.... what? That's it? He's going to treat this player with polite style and grace? But... this is EVE, right?! How is the guy going to respond I wonder? I held my breath for what seemed an eternity, but was probably two seconds when the player responded with an embarrassed tone "Sorry Lychton, it slipped. My bad.


I mean, this is EVE online we're talking about, after all. Do you know how many times I've hit D-scan in highsec to see a fleet of Hulks all named "Jew Miner"? Or had someone go completely off on another person in Local for really dumb reasons? Or seen a character name that has a name like "Jew Hunter?" Or had chat shitted up with the "girls don't play games" debate? Or found a container on a gate that says "Hang all Ni***rs?" Or had your fleet channel spammed with porn? Or been on various fleet comms to hear someone screaming "Kill that fucking sp*c!?" You don't like it, but you need this particular fleet to accomplish this particular goal, and stopping to ask the FC to not use that language will not go over well. You grit your teeth and bear it. You report the container or the player, but nothing ever seems to get done. It's rampant. It's accepted. It has become the culture we must slog through in order to play.

So, imagine yourself as me, an EVE player sitting in a new Mumble and hearing that exchange of words between Lychton and the Brave member. Now, imagine that you start seeing it everywhere within this alliance. No one names their ships with ugly words. No one even posts their killmails in local to taunt the person they just blew up. There is no taunting at all. You're told to flood local with "GF" or "7o" instead. If the enemy posts your lossmail, trump it by taking your most embarrassing lossmail and put it in local right below the other. A very classy way of telling the enemy "I'm having fun with this. I have the control. What else you got?" You are expected to have fun, but treat everyone you encounter with respect.

Highsec mining isn't a cause for rambling hatred. No, it's an entirely active fleet in this alliance. They have entire divisions of chat channels, alt corps, and guides for doing nothing but training newbies in aspects of PvP, PvE, Industry, PI... my god, they even give away free skill books and ships through the Brave Dojo channel!  Centered around the newbie, the entire alliance was there to encourage each other to "maximize their fun-per-hour", no matter what their play style was.

Jesus! Someone even made a graphic celebrating these guys!

Maybe this doesn't appeal to you dear reader, but by God, I felt like I had found the home I was trying to build within my own corp. It wasn't long before I was convinced that this was for real - Brave had grown up and found a way to keep this culture true to style across the entire alliance. I called for a corp meeting, reported what I found there in Brave, we took a vote, and the rest was history. Thrall Nation was formed and we rolled into Brave Collective. 

You know you wanna.

Back! Sort of!

Wow, it's been a wee bit longer since I've written a post than I actually thought. Time has a way of slipping away from you, I suppose. I think about this blog often, but mostly it's in relation to the reasons I haven't updated it. What I mean is, instead of thinking "Oh, I need to write a post", I mean "I really need to write THAT post on WHY I'm not updating it." Well, this is that post.

First though, I'll do a quick capture on what's happened since I last wrote a post. Let's see, there's the Somer Blink scandal, Rubicon launch, the Halloween War and the battle of B-R5RB, PLEX for Good (I did manage a quick post for that), changes to the scanner and warp speeds, ship re-balances, and, well, too many other things to even begin to catch up on. Instead, I'll focus on the BIG one that effects my little world the most.

Starting back in December 2013 my corp at the time (an Industrial, Markets, & Small Gang PVP-minded corp) was re-rolled into Thrall Nation (.THN.). Thrall Nation was created for one purpose: to join the alliance of the Brave Collective (link to latest Alliance interview), home of Brave Newbies Inc. (BNI).

Thrall Nation [.THN.] was born.
Naturally, most of you have me figured out well enough to know that this was not a snap decision because, well, Coffee doesn't make snap decisions. I prefer "the long play" on big plans and I always weigh the situations before us as best as I can. To that end, I stuck an alt into BNI early last fall. My intent was to spy, but only in the most positive of ways. At the very least I would gather intel that would be mutually beneficial to both parties: market and trade data on what we could leverage during BNI staging, ops, and deployments for Thrall member profit. Of course, at the very best was what ended up happening: If the BNI culture was as good as what I'd heard, we might just say "Hell with this, let's just join with them".

7o indeed, good sir.
It really was as good as you've heard. But, I digress, that story deserves a post of its own.

So, with all that fun stuff going on, why haven't I kept up on the blogging? Well, partially the move to BRAVE is to blame. As CEO, it's very important to me to be an active leader. With the Corp's move and reorganization, combined with BRAVE's Winter War in Syndicate and the subsequent Burn Catch campaign we are currently in, I typically use up any free time in the game itself. Of course, I'm still attending college (last semester for the AA) and working part time. Plus, you know, the wife wants some time too. I manage to pencil her in every other Tuesday.

But there's a bigger reason than all that. Since last fall, I've known I wanted to move this blog to its own website and expand upon it, so I held off on new blogs and spent that time working on it. Nothing too fancy, but a site where I can also provide informational pieces, guides, and other snippets of information for the player base. There's already fantastic EVE websites and informative blogs out there that I use such as The Mittani, EVE News 24, EVE University, Jester's Trek, and many more. But they can't cover everything in a game as complex as EVE. I don't plan on covering everything, either, but I did plan on posting what's important to me from the get go. After I was settled in and comfortable with the site, I planned on expanding in areas I feel are worth my time or interest. Notice I'm using past tense here when I speak of my plans? Yah, about that.


A long, long time ago when I was about 14 (around the summer of 1995 if memory serves me), I taught myself HTML and Javascript using our household computer. I used that knowledge to build a couple of Geocities sites and eventually my own website, and even garnered a little advertising revenue at the time. My mother thought I would be the next big computer genius and told me to keep at it. Moms are funny that way. Fast forward 19 years, and here I am trying to hammer out a website using HTML and Javascript because, well, that's where my learning stopped. Listen to your parents, kids, their advice will save you headaches later in life.

Those of you that know a thing or two about website development are currently shaking your head saying "You poor dumb bastard". It's true - both on the 'poor' and 'dumb' parts. For those that don't know, computer languages and website development have, well, evolved just a little in 19 freaking years time. I figured I could teach myself what I needed to know just like I did all those years ago. That last sentence has those same web devs now laughing their asses off, but I really thought I could. And, for a brief moment there, I did. I learned CSS! MY GOD, CSS IS BLESSED MAGIC SENT FROM UP HIGH!! Good job Coffee - you are now in 1996, you moron.

After learning CSS and playing with it, I moved on. For a couple of months I tried to figure out what these newfangled "databases" were, and this futuristic "PHP" and whatnots, and this "Python" or snake or cobra-kai or whatever the hell these darned kids call it these days. Yah.... it was like smacking face first into a big freaking brick wall. Damnit, I better call Mom and admit she was right about one thing - I should have stuck with it back then. I hate calling her to tell her she was right about something. It keeps happening the older I get, too.

I finally called a buddy of mine that owns his own web dev company and got his honest advice. He knows me well enough to know that a) I don't ask for anything for free, so I wasn't calling to ask him that and b) I have no money to pay for someone to do it for me, so this phone call wasn't that either. After discussing particulars, he pinged me pretty quick on some other stuff and left me with some solid advice on how to proceed. He's confident I can get it done with what he told me. I wish I had his confidence in me, but I'm too stubborn to quit now. So, in the mean time I'm going to keep the occasional post here while working on the site. I promise you - it will be done, AS BOB AS MY WITNESS IT WILL BE DONE!

Sigh. Time to get back at it.

Monday, November 25, 2013

PLEX For Good: Philippines Typhoon Relief

I know I haven't done a blog for a while. I promise, real life is easing up a little and I'll be getting back to it shortly! Even though my time is limited and it is currently 3 am in the morning where I am, I wanted to take the time to spotlight something very important. Namely, the current CCP PLEX For Good campaign.

On November 8th, 2013, the Philippines were struck by Typhoon Haihan leaving a swath of destruction that has rattled entire communities and destroyed many lives. In true EVE Player fashion, many of us took our fingers off the autocannon trigger long enough to ask CCP to do another PFG for those in need. CCP responded to the outpour by pledging $15 to the Red Cross's efforts in the Philipines for every PLEX donated.

To donate, contract one or more PLEX to the "CCP PLEX for GOOD" character on a 14-day item exchange contract. The contract will be accepted within a 24-hr period. Take the time to make sure you are contracting it to the correct toon - If you find anyone attempting to scam this effort, REPORT THEM.

(c) CCP Games

If helping others by chipping in fake internet money (i.e., ISK) isn't enough of an incentive to help your fellow men and women in dire need, CCP is giving something back to every player that donates: two limited edition Sisters of EVE Food Relief "Humanitarian T-shirt YC-115" t-shirts (one for each gender) that your characters can proudly wear. CCP Bro will also be announcing on November 27th "a surprise that will hopefully make this the most successful PLEX for GOOD drive to date". The tinfoil hattery has already begun, and speculation is that it is another gift for those that donate or perhaps a drawing for a special edition ship.

Regardless, I hope you'll take the time to donate. I will be logging in sometime today and hopefully making my way to Amarr to donate one of my PLEX - hope to see you there doing the same!