This might be the most emotional EVE Online interview you'll ever read.
Fanfests | Metaverses | Love – EVE Online Interviews (March)
A regular Tuesday in the "real world" and a Tuesday in EVE Online can be two very different things. We continued our monthly tradition of interviewing CCP's Brand Director Sæmundur Hermannsson and Creative Director Bergur Finnbogason. Plus, we were joined by special guest, Community Developer and EVE aficionado Peter Farrell (CCP Swift).
It was freaking Tuesday, a regular Tuesday for most people, yet a momentous event for all who knew about it!
Let's look a little less further into the future than last time. You must be really excited about the return of Fanfest. Are you going full speed ahead with it?
*Bergur and Sæmi both grin, put their thumbs up, and play air drums*
Sæmi: Full speed ahead! A few months ago, we were dreading the possibility of cancelling again, I don't think my heart could have taken cancelling another one. It would have been awful for everybody. But now we're delighted to be moving ahead with confidence, we're going all-in, full speed ahead, it's going to be awesome. It'll be held in Laugardalshöll arena, the same that held Riot's world championship, the biggest esports event in the history of the world. So, we asked Riot nicely, and they're going to have their stars warm up for us.
And what are you most looking forward to?
Sæmi: There's so much, I'm heavily involved in the whole event though so I suspect my highlight will be Saturday at 3p.m. I'll be super tired, but I'll be able to stand in the middle of everything buzzing. That's the moment I'll look forward to the most, having a beer and soaking that all in. I just love it!
Bergur: I can't wait for the moment right after the keynote where I can finally meet people and hang out. When I get to see all of my friends again after way too long. There are so many awesome people coming that I can't wait to see face-to-face after so long. I can't wait to be able to nerd out, share what we've been discussing internally, and give people an opportunity to just live EVE for a few days. Podcasts and interviews are great, but they're never a true substitution for being able to discuss something in context. It's amazing, I love it, it allows me to just lose my sh*t and nerd out. Going to bed late, waking up early, phone switched off and just getting lost. My wife marks Fanfest in the calendar knowing that she won't get anything from me for a few days.
Peter: This will be my first Fanfest as a CCPer. I've gone to the previous ten Fanfests just as a player because there is just something special and unique about it. A thousand EVE players descending on the city of Reykjavik, which isn't a big city. That means you just see them, us, everywhere; they're all over the place and the city welcomes them so much. There have been really memorable events in Toronto and Vegas, but there's something special about being in a smaller, more intimate city and meeting people again and again.
Bergur: What I love about it as well in Reykjavik is late at night when it gets a bit rowdy. You go into a bar and there's EVE players everywhere from opposite parts of the universe. In New Eden they wouldn't go within ten jumps of each other, but at Fanfest everyone talks to everyone, they're sharing a beer and laughing nonstop.
Sæmi: I think this is the first level of the Metaverse, when you have people with different levels of fame or notoriety in space meeting in person and discussing both real life things like kids, careers, and hobbies as well as in-game things like intergalactic domination.
Bergur: A lot of people don't even know or use each other's real names. Pete, I didn't know your real name!
Peter: It really is so cool. Especially as lots of these people communicate via Discord servers and that's where their friendships are made. You'll walk by a table, and you'll pick up on a familiar voice and you'll say, "I know who that is!" – you know their gamer tag and use it for the entire event.
Sæmi: One of my favourite images from EVE Online as a whole was captured at Fanfest – when the space pope hung out with Nobel-prize winning physicist Michel Mayor.
We loved learning about the record-breaking star system runs. Which other inspirational acts by EVE Online players have stuck with you over the years?
Sæmi: It's hard to even choose between in-game or out-of-game. But Gregas is one great example for me. She's been such a key person for player gatherings – always at the centre of organising everything, from volunteers at events to festivals.
Bergur: I'm not sure I could name just one, but can I choose all those have found love in EVE? This is the stuff that just snaps my heart in two and melts me. I love it when people find friendships and enrich their lives together. When people have found love through a game, it gets me every time. Some of them have children, and sometimes those kids are playing EVE too!
Sæmi: Also, these moments in time really stick with me. Like the last war, the big war. You have Imperium streaming from one of the biggest battles. If you watch the stream, it becomes so impressive how much goes into a New Eden war. You reliably have streamers reporting on it as if it were election night, wearing suits with a rotating selection of guests, "If you're just tuning in this is what's been happening!" They discuss what's going on in the war, how the battle is unfolding, predictions for consequences. And it goes on and on. Eventually I fell to sleep watching it, and just like election day, I woke up and it was still streaming. So, I sat and watched the rest of the stream with my son. It was freaking Tuesday, a regular Tuesday for most yet a momentous event for all who knew about it. These are the true stories of the things that go on in our amazing community.
We'll be covering EVE Fanfest on the ground in Iceland, bringing you live and chilly coverage from EVE Online's greatest event. You can find more about the event and ticket availability via the official EVE website .