CCP has finally lifted restrictions on developers publicly playing EVE Online. According to the new policy, first announced at EVE London, EVE developers will no longer be bound by certain restrictions. The people who work at CCP are now able to openly play on their public accounts, that’s the accounts with no developer powers by the way. Other restrictions like abusing privileged information are still in place though.
What Was The Policy Before?
Previously, after some infamous scandals involving developers abusing powers to spawn rare items, CCP implemented a policy that heavily restricted what kinds of activities that members of staff could engage in. The biggest restriction was that CCP employees had to remain anonymous. In player groups where voice chat was often mandatory, this was all but impossible for some. The guidelines for how to mitigate being found out as a CCP developer where pretty strict too, often leading to the compromised character being changed.
The previous guidelines were as follows: “Employees should contact a Lead Game Master or IA immediately if their in-game identity is compromised or made public. The compromised character should not log into the game until the matter has been investigated and may be moved or removed, depending on circumstances.”
The restriction led many developers, by CCP’s own admission, to relegate themselves to solo play. CCP wants to change that.
What’s The Policy Now?
CCP has lifted the anonymity requirement for one thing. The developer themselves is now allowed to set the enforced level of anonymity for their accounts. If they wish to continue abiding by the old level of anonymity, they may. If a developer wants to reveal their identity as a CCP employee to a trusted few in their corporation or alliance, they may do that. The company has also created special exceptions where a developer may choose to return their account to an anonymous state, such as being subject to harassment.
This does not lift the restrictions on dev accounts though, so no cheating for the sake of your alliance. By the way, this is the thing that led to the institution of internal affairs guidelines in the first place. This event is otherwise known as the T20 scandal. Also, CCP employees are still not allowed to disclose information about work-related issues, such as game development, balance changes, and bug fixes.
Regular players of course now have some new responsibilities. In essence, just let people play the game. Being toxic or pestering developers on public accounts in recommended against. It’s important to remember that these are just people trying to enjoy the same game as you. They’re sometimes not even directly involved with development of EVE Online. And most importantly, they’re not in the game on public accounts to help you. There are already support systems and GMs in place to deal with in-game issues, use them.
This is sort of a trust exercise by CCP, as long as players treat the developers with respect and dignity, as much as can be said in the cutthroat world of New Eden, this policy won’t change.