Last June I asked on my blog, and on some forums, for people to respond to a simple survey. The survey was designed around the concept called the "Net Promoter Score" that is a current fad in the corperate world.
Personally I am a huge fan of the survey and have seen it transform organizations. As a result I thought that I would try and apply it to EVE Online to see what people say. I also asked WOW players on what forums I knew about the same question. I had over 200 reponses from EVE players, and about 90 responses from WOW players.
So... without any further adieu... Here are the results
EVE Online NPS = 21
WOW NPS = 21
Here are some of the comments from the EVE Online 'Promoters' (score - comment):
9 - I enjoy the real consequences of pvp/pve and would like friends to play with me.
10 - It is a uniquely realistic depiction of a lawless society, also fun, lots of fun
10 - EVE allows a freedom unsurpassed in any other MMO, basically the
sandboxiness is awesome. Also, you're flying SPACESHIPS, anyone who
doesn't like that is probably a communist.
10 - It's vast and wonderfully complex, it has SPACESHIPS! And it makes you think... A lot.
And here is a 'special one'...
10 - player name - hahahahahaha Nice try.. Rule #1 Trust No One
Here are some of the comments from the EVE Online 'Detractors':
0 - I love EVE, but it's a terrible game. It has a terrible
community, and terrible customer support (GMs often seem "out to get
you"). You need ISK for everything, but the only way to get ISK is to
spend hours a day grinding. It's a terrible, terrible game, and I love
it, but I wouldn't wish it upon my worst enemy.
2 - Too time consuming - I don't want to ruin a friend's life or marriage.
1- The player environment of Eve is not conductive to making new
acquaintances you could actually play with, and few people pull it off.
Paranoia levels in Eve among veteran players are so high, that the
chance to find a non-solitary niche for a new player is fairly low, and
new players drop out quickly and most importantly, together. (A solitary
niche is not worth recommending in the first place.) Which means that
if I introduce a friend or colleague to Eve, I will have to BE the core
of their social environment and provide that niche myself if I wish them
to stay. That, basically means that I'd be recommending them something
they cannot possibly enjoy on their own without me. The only way that
could work would be enticing many people to do that at once and support
each other, forming a straight up corporation entirely from friends and
colleagues. That is quite a tall order, which makes such a
recommendation not impossible, but very unlikely.
2 - Goon shenanigans, especially as they impact the Market and the
overall game economy and player attitude, has made any activity for the
regular player meaningless. Also, player attitude is childish in the
extreme, especially on Forums. It used to be fun till CCP got in bed
with and praised Goons.
For comparison here are some WOW Promoters:
10 - I love the game, there is so much to do, and most of the people are amazing!
9 - It's a great game to play with friends.
9 - This game is
extremely fun. It's a game where you can spend time with friends and
other people. I've connected with a lot of people through WoW and people
have connected with me. This game is truly amazing and would recommend
it to everyone who loves MMO's.9 - In spite of its issues, I've loved
this game for a long time. But I would probably only recommend it to
someone if I already knew they were an avid gamer, because there's
always been a certain amount of social stigma around this game in
And here are some WOW Detractors:
3 - The games long life cycle means there is no one I know who would
like that hasn't already tried it. Meaning I would just be getting back
into the game with the same old addicts.
0 = After playing for 8 years the thought of explaining the mechanics
to someone new just seems like a huge task. Things that I think are
trivial probably don't come easily. Relating to someone brand new would
be an extremely challenging task. The best I can do is point you to this
blog post on the Elitist Jerks forum. It essentially goes through what
raiding at 60 was like, compared to raiding in wrath. The points still
stand and even more so now with Cata being wrapped up and heading into
The complexity I went through was seeing the changes unfold and
adapting. Now that's not the case. It's understanding what were once
pretty crazy ideas and adapting those without any background.
5 - Depends on the person... mostly I would like to because I love the game... but it can also be embarassing.
Personally I find the results of the survey interesting. In both cases players love the game because of doing things with other people (duh! it is an MMO). WOW players loved the large amount of content, and EVE players loved the sanboxiness/lawlessness. In both cases players have concerns about new players not being able to enjoy it.
What CCP / Blizzard need to do to improve...
It seems that bot EVE and WOW should work on helping players interact more with other players more, especially when new. This seems to be the key to move them from detractors to promoters. The resistance to this in EVE is that new players are intimidated by veterans, and veterans are paranoid about new players. With WOW it sounds like there is no simply no motivation for older players to work with newer players and this results in a large amount of grinding upwards to get to be actually noticed by other players. Game mechanic changes to improve these areas would be welcome and contribute to the success of both games.