When we’re young, the world seems vast and open and free to us. The endless, horizonless expanses stretch for light years, shining faintly on your hull with the light of distant suns. This isn’t our world, but it is a world. They say that EVE is real, but this is a simulation. Welcome to the first game.
Welcome to the village, here’s your rubix cube, now go fuck yourself. The first lessons are easy.
Stay out of the wilderness, it’s full of bandits with bigger swords and better Arts than you. It won’t end well. You can learn that for free in your first ten minutes if you really want to, there are places and people happy to teach you those lessons. When your soul recoalesces around a new body the healers cooked up for you, they’ll even give you a new rubix cube before telling you to fuck off again.
Okay, so, stay inside the fences, stay on the trails, don’t go in the wilderness. Seems easy enough.
Next lesson: minerals I mine aren’t free. You can chop wood for ten hours, and sure, somebody needs to chop that wood, but in the same amount of time, you could have been working as a blacksmith or trader or some other lucrative profession and make enough to buy ten times the wood you chopped in the same span of time.
Okay, so always do whatever looks like the best thing to do is, given the circumstances. Farmer Ted will give you the most money, the most reliably, to help manage his fields, so spend a year or two working for Farmer Ted.
Maybe you start to build up a nest egg for yourself, you erect a house in the village, and you faithfully execute the role of a member of the village community.
For many people, this is your life, and it’s easy enough. Farmer Ted is a good boss, the work is kind of monotonous, but it pays well enough to keep you well equipped, you even have a nice shiny sword and armor now, and that wilderness doesn’t seem so threatening anymore, but you can’t help but start to feel trapped.
The world is so vast and huge, the wonders so rich and great, why am I stuck tilling Farmer Ted’s field? Don’t I deserve to go out there and claim kingdoms, tap into untold and undiscovered wealth and build empires reaching to the heavens? That’s what this is all about right?
Well, there’s a person for everything in this world, and the right one just so happens to hear your plea to the heavens and has just the solution.
Meet Nem. Nem has all of the answers.
He knows every bend in the paths, every break in the fence, he knows where every tee in the wilderness is, he knows all the places the bandits set up their ambushes, he has all the information there is to have and then some. All Nem asks for is your loyalty, and in exchange, he’ll teach you everything he knows, and hone you into a weapon of unmatched power and prowess.
He asks you to follow him into the wilderness, and at this point, there’s no way you could consider staying in the village. The whole world is out there after all, and now that you know it’s possible to learn the tricks, it’s impossible to be content with just helping out Farmer Ted.
So you prepare your weapons, your armor, your equipment, and you follow Nem into the wilderness to learn the State of the Art.