Community Spotlight: EVE Backstage
Events have been heating up across New Eden as the four empires deal with their own internal strife and growing tensions between them. The Battle of Caldari Prime was one of the biggest events in EVE's history, with thousands of people in space and on the ground, doing battle on behalf of the Caldari State or the Gallente Federation. However, conflict between the empires is not limited to Live Events and missions. Players have been carrying the flag for the factions since the very beginning, forming their own power blocs, waging their wars, engaging in politics, and most of all having fun.
These players, who are invested in the backstory of EVE Online, have long gathered on the EVE Backstage forum, where they discuss fiction, debate their interpretations of stories, and form their own community.
EVE Backstage, found at //backstage.eve-inspiracy.com/, opened its doors in April 2010, making it three years old this month. While there were some predecessors to the site, such as the now-defunct EVE-Chatsubo, chief administrator Silver Night and several other players felt they needed a venue where players interested in the fiction could have unfettered discussions about EVE, EVE lore, their characters, and even non-backstory related things in an out of character manner.
While initially having fairly low expectations about the numbers they'd attract, the forum proved to be quite popular with similarly-minded players. The forum now has several hundred registered users, with close to two hundred who are at least semi-regularly active. Over the life of the board, they've average about sixty-five posts per day on a variety of subjects.
Silver Night, a 10-year veteran of EVE Online, is the main administrator of EVE Backstage. Though he runs the forums and moderates, he's not afraid to jump in and make his opinions known on a subject. However, he's a fair and just overseer. He keeps threads on topic and deals with people causing trouble swiftly, but isn't afraid to let people engage in a vigorous debate.
However, he is not among the technically knowledgeable and it's impossible to run an entire forum on your own, so he has several people who help him out. The current team includes Casiella, Ciarente, Ghost Hunter, Jekaterine, Misan, and Morwen Lagann, all people who have been interested and involved in the backstory of EVE for quite some time.
The forum has several different sections, though the ones that are most related to the lore are the OOC Summit, CCP Public Library, Player Driven Content, EVE Fiction + Fiction Discussion, and Character Development sections. Each has their own purse and can be the source of back-and-forths that delve deeply into the lore of EVE Online and the various methods of expressing it in game.
With the return of Live Events and the Uprising storyline pushing lore back to the forefront of EVE Online, the talk has grown incredibly vigorous. Each of the four empires have their own threads devoted to discussing what's taken place and speculating on what the future might bring. Altogether, they've spanned 50 pages. Silver Night has highlighted the two threads discussing the Amarr and the Caldari arcs in particular as having generated a great exchange of ideas.
But the forum has been around for three years! It certainly did not just get interesting recently and, indeed, there have been many threads over the years to stimulate your brain. One of Silver's favorites was a debate over the nature of Caldari corporate politics that occurred roughly a year ago, while he also points to an intriguing thread on the possibility of a Caldari-Minmatar alliance.
Of course, getting involved in the backstory and lore of EVE Online can be a daunting prospect. There's so much to absorb. Silver Night tells people to just jump on in. The people who dig into the backstory can be very friendly, though they can be just as ruthless as the rest of the EVE populace (he warns people against asking them to move your stuff for you!)
For those first-timers, he suggests taking it slow. Find a few things you're interested in and take it in nice, bit-sized chunks and don't be afraid to ask questions about things. People who have been around for years can be fonts of knowledge and help you figure out where to go for more. He particularly recommends checking out the new EVE Timeline. For those who really want to dig in deep, the EVE Fiction Portal will be your best friend!
If you want to get yourself more involved with the amazing lore and backstory of EVE Online, check them out at //backstage.eve-inspiracy.com/!