You can read Part 1 here.
Having watched Fanfest from afar for several years now, for my wife and I attending for the first time, this event brought a whole new level to my experience of the game.
Sure I’ve attended EveDownUnder for the last couple of years, attended countless local Brisbane Player Meetups (Happy Birthday Fawlty7) and “get” the community aspect of the game. But to finally engage with the larger, more international community was something else entirely.
Coming face to face with people I had seen on Youtube/twitch, listened to on podcasts or conversed with over twitter for a number of years, hung out with in fleets and spoken for countless hours over teamspeak provides an experience that casts a significant shadow over anything CCP could accomplish with all their presentations.
Of course without CCP there would be no Eve Online, nor Fanfest, for that matter and I cannot thank them enough for providing the excuse for so many internet spaceship nerds to gather on a remote volcanic island on the other side of the world.
And so on to the event itself (aka “The YC119 Kyonoke Inquest”)…which unofficially started the day before for many capsuleers.
On Wednesday we had the first of many AUTZ meetups, this one run concurrently with the Poker Tournament at the Bryggjan Brugghús. Of course you can’t get there without tripping over one of the main attractions for any Eve player making the pilgrimage to Iceland.
Afterwards it was time to head to Harpa, register and scoop up the loot bags before the insanity commenced the next day.
We didn’t end up making it to the Tweetfleet meetup (which I heard was an absolute riot), but instead myself and the Affirmative crew I was staying with opted for a more “low-key” meetup with the capsuleers from Pheonix Naval Systems at their apartment.
The next day saw us arrive at Harpa (or H4-RP4 depending on who you talked to). For me, this was when I was going to get most of my LARPing done, since the main festivities didn’t commence until later in the afternoon/evening.
Walking into Tranquility for the opening ceremony/keynote address was an experience like no other. We’d seen the main hall from our Twitch/Youtube vantage point before, but to actually get in amongst the crowd was a different experience entirely.
Oh and their may have been some “fangirling” moments from the wife and myself when we realised the people seated in the near vicinity to us (although jury is still out regarding who was fangirling harder).
I won’t go into dissecting the keynote here, but one of the highlights for me was definitely the new opening sequence. With the bass turned up to 11, the beating heart emanating from the ship itself really drove home that you are not only flying these things, but they are you. This is a game like no other and this video really emphasised that point.
Of all the sessions I attended, Professor Michel Mayor’s presentation on exoplanets and the subsequent roundtable were perhaps my favourite of any, and as a physics/science teacher incredibly informative as well.
I also got to try the hands-on demo for the new Project Discovery. It was very different from the current iteration of Project Discovery in the sense that unlike the biology-based version we currently have, it is quite likely that most samples will actually contain no planets when analysed correctly.
Talking to the CCP devs, they are aware of the potential for players to “spam cytoplasm” more so in this iteration and are looking at ways to incentivise proper analysis to find cool stuff, such as binary star systems, within the data.
The pub crawl began with CCP Falcon arriving on a throne of Gull and ended in another AUTZ meetup once all the groups converged. I don’t think too much needs to be said – what happens on pub crawl…is probably spread across the internet anyway.
To finish up, there was the Party at the Top of the World. There was really only one group I was there to see and that was Permanband. From Eve-related covers of 80s rock songs to their own hits, they definitely knew how to entertain the crowd (lets not forget their warmup at the closing ceremony with RockBand instruments).
Oh, lets not forget to thank PL for helping pick up hygeine standards amongst fellow capsuleers.
Truth be told there was so much that happened that it would be almost impossible to capture it all. Well I could but I’ve no desire to write an entire thesis length article to do so.
Ultimately everyone experiences Fanfest in their own way – whether it was LARPing the entire time, trying to cram in as many sessions as possible or skipping every session just to hang out with spacefriends, I doubt there are many (if any) who leave without fond memories of their time in Iceland.
Thank you to everyone who helped make this event truly memorable. Hope to see you all (and anyone who couldnt make it) again soon.