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EVE Echoes – First Impressions

EVE Echoes is best described as the mobile version of EVE Online. If you haven’t heard of EVE Online, I can say you have missed out on a humongous game with one of the best communities in the video gaming world.

EVE Echoes has Soul

There are several space-based MMOs out there on mobile devices. Some of these titles are new like Second Galaxy, others have been around for a while now, like Star Trek Fleet Command. I have played them all, but they all had something missing, something that stopped me coming back for more.

EVE Echoes seems to have brought more to the table than the other various mobile MMOs out there. It is hard to put my finger on exactly what, but there is substance to it. In Second Galaxy they lump you into a space police role and it feels forced. To put it bluntly, Second Galaxy lacks soul and somehow EVE Echoes has an abundance of it.

It might be the fact that EVE Online has an absurdly active and friendly community, so it was easy for CCP and NetEase to bring the charm over to mobile. Or maybe the sheer size of Echoes has enough going on to tickle my fancy.

All I can say is there is something about EVE Echoes that every single video game developer should imitate, and that is listening to the community. I am not saying that EVE is the only game with a player-driven update system. But, what I am saying is this should be the new minimum from large video game corporations.

Big companies should have an interest in delivering good experiences to all the players and not get distracted with political opinions or greedy publishers.

First Impressions

Anyway, it’s time to jump straight into the gameplay. Echoes is one of those games where you can play for a crazy amount of hours and have not much to show for it. That’s not a bad thing, it just should tell you to play EVE differently than other MMOs. You can approach Echoes as a lone wolf, but you would save a lot of time making friends and working together.

The gameplay is good, there are similarities when compared to EVE Online, but there are also several differences. The user interface has been completely re-designed to fit a mobile device which has come at a cost for some mechanics.

The combat system will need some work before any hardcore EVE fans will be pleased with it. The dogfights in space are very much automated, the weapons you have are often automatically fired, so you don’t feel too engaged with combat. You can’t easily perform manoeuvres and you don’t gain much of an advantage trying to change targets. At the moment, the combat feels like it is on rails, with speed being an important part of space battling.

Last thoughts

There are a lot of features to talk about, but I don’t feel like I have had enough time to dig into the meat of Echoes. What fills me with confidence is I believe there is substance behind the game, something that was lacking in Second Galaxy.

I don’t think the version of EVE Echoes I played is a complete game right now, but I don’t think it’s far off. Bringing a game as humongous as EVE Online to mobile is no easy task, so I am more than willing to wait and see how good Echoes gets.

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