‘EVE Online’: Record-Breaking 4000-Player Space Battle Takes Place Over The Weekend

If you follow gaming news, you’ve likely heard a grand story or two about massive space battles in EVE Online, CCP Games’ massively multiplayer space game that has been going strong for over a decade now. You haven’t heard a story of a grand space battle quite like this, however.

Over the weekend, a massive space battle broke out that saw a little over 4,000 players taking part in one area – and the battle, according to the developers themselves, was the largest the game had ever seen, trumping even the famous Battle of Asakai from earlier this year.

The epic battle took place in 6VDT, an area of “null-sec” space. For the uninitiated, “high-sec” space in EVE Online is considered safe; if you shoot at someone without being shot at first, CONCORD, the game’s NPC-controlled “police,” will swoop in and blow up your ship faster than you can react.

Null-sec, on the other hand, has no CONCORD. If you’re being shot at, you either run or fight to the death.

6VDT was home to the TEST Alliance, one of EVE Online’s largest alliances. The attackers, CFC, had apparently been looking to hit TEST where it hurts for months, according to a report from The Verge which provided updates as the battle went on.

Initially, the battle started with around 4,070 players in 6VDT at once – to compensate, the server kicked on “time dilation,” which essentially slows down time so that the server is able to process all commands from all players. As the battle was just about to begin, orders came in from both sides to fight to the last ship.

It didn’t quite turn out that way, however.

After all was said and done – it took nearly five hours for everything to be “said and done” – just under 3,000 ships from both sides had been lost, and CFC had successfully pushed TEST Alliance out of the system. It was originally intended for TEST to call in backup, The Verge reported, but leadership decided against it in hopes to avoid complete annihilation by the still strong CFC fleets.

The legendary Battle of Asakai saw the loss of nearly $20,000 worth of ships in real-world currency, and that was on a smaller scale. The exact loss still isn’t known at this point, but 3,000 ships will likely add up to at least that amount, if not more.

If you’ve ever wondered why people play EVE Online, a game that practically requires you go to school in order to learn how to play it, this is one good reason why.

[Image source: Twitch.TV streamer drew_qt via The Verge]