Is using skill injectors bad? Let me ask you this, is using a backhoe to dig a hole for a swimming pool bad? You could “earn” that swimming pool by using a shovel and your own muscle power to get that hole dug.
In Game Skill vs. Player Skill
There’s two types of skill at play when we talk about Eve Online. In game skill and player skill.
In Game Skill
There’s in game skill, which you earn by putting a skill into a queue or buying with unused skill points. This could be the 1 million skill points you can get when you use a friend’s link to make an account, skill points from the skilling spree or the daily login rewards.
Then there’s player skill. Player skill is situational awareness. Are you watching local chat to see if the numbers spike or if flashy (suspect or criminal) pilots come into your high or lowsec system? Are you using DScan to see if anything is about to jump on top of you? How about using DScan to hunt down other players? Combat probes? Manually piloting? Setting up pings and perches? All the skill points you can buy outside of the normal skilling up won’t give you this knowledge. Only playing the game, flying ships, making mistakes and getting blown up will give you player skill.
So Is Skill Injecting Wrong?
Not necessarily. Let me give you a few user cases and then you can decide for yourself if the players should have used skill injectors or have “earned” the skills.
Player 1 – Injecting into ALL ships
A player I knew started playing Eve. He had wanted to play badly for years but didn’t have the time nor the money to invest. One day he got a great job and suddenly had the time to play and the money to buy skill injectors and “catch up” to players who’d been playing for years.
There’s plenty of pilots who do this and then proceed to go out and blow up ships because they don’t know how to fly them. This is great for players like me who love seeing a big number come up on ZKillBoard. However, player 1 wasn’t that type of player. He caught on to actually playing quickly and soon was playing all sort of specialized roles, hunting for Bombers Bar, and was a kick ass PVP pilot. However, at a certain point he just kind of faded away from the game. It lost any meaning and he disappeared… was it because he injected and didn’t earn anything? Establish any real lasting relationships while waiting to skill into something cool? Up to you to decide.
Player 2 – Injecting into Incursion Ship Upgrades
There are several incursion groups (high end PVE) who require you to upgrade your ships and skills until there’s nothing more to upgrade (fyi, Eve Rookies Incursions is NOT one of those groups!!). So this player went to one of the groups, decided she really liked running incursions and started the path of injecting not only her main toon, but several alts so she can box them if they’re needed on fleet.
This player had done a little bit of this and that before jumping into incursions and the skills she was injecting were in line with the things she needed to eventually fly Maurader class ships. Waiting to skill naturally into everything the group requires would take months. If she earned the isk to buy the injectors, is it wrong of her to inject in order to play Eve the way she wants to play it?
Player 3 – Injecting into the Claymore
The Claymore is a Minmatar command ship. Just to get into the ship (and not even to fly it for max bonus), it would take 105 days. This player needed to skill into the Claymore so she could FC incursion fleets for Eve Rookies. If she would have waited to skill into it organically, she would have had to wait about 5 months to start up this rookie vanguard incursion group.
At the point of injection, she had already been playing eve for about 1.3 years and could fly nearly all destroyers and frigates by this point. She was a hunter/scout for NPSI (not purple shoot it) fleets and could also fly a Tengu and other cloaky ships. She was also a NPSI rookie fleet FC. So instead of waiting to start up her rookie incursion group, she bought the skill points as well as skill injectors to get into the Claymore immediately. Do you think this was pay to win?
Conclusion to Skill Injecting
I’m actually player 3 in the examples above. When I rebooted the rookie incursion group, Eve Rookies Incursions, we decided that the FCs had to fly the boost ship precisely because it’s such a long train. It’s not something everyone will or wants to train into but it’s important if the fleet is going to undock. Honestly, the train time is the ONLY thing remarkable about this ship, I’m never going to fly it outside of incursions and wasting over 150 days to get everything involved to the level it needed to be is insanity. Since there are so many other things I want to train (like getting into a Kiki or the armor battleships for armor incursion fleets) I decided to just inject. I had the money and needed it to form a public community.
At the end of the day, every pilot needs to decide for themselves if they want to inject skills to catch up or do something fun they’d have to wait 5-6 months for otherwise. It’s not up to me to tell you to do it, it’s also not up to me or any other pilot to tell you not to! Fly safe!