"...what makes the game special for you?First of all, kudos to CCP for having a rose-coloured vision of the universe they've created where dastardly plots are unhatched and lauded over the internet (eg. Ubiqua Seraph of olde; and BoB's dissolution) whilst random friendships are made that impact many ingame (ie. the Butterfly Effect youtube video)What is it that makes this particular virtual world so enticing, so mysterious and so alluring that we keep coming back for more. Why is EVE one of the very few MMOs to see a continuous growth in its subscriber.To put it simply: Why do you love EVE Online so much?"
Secondly, I don't believe in the above fairy tales at all and am overjoyed with the stability of the region of space i've settled down quite happily in, free from "anti-pirates", "griefers" and "carebears" alike. The chaotic maelstrom of low sec that i'd imagined years ago, while I mined Scordite asteroids and bought and sold commodities like antibiotics between different NPC corporations, was worlds apart from the kind of 'Wild West' concept i'd had of honorable anti-pirates chasing off two-bit amateur pirate bands. I'm sure CVA roleplays that to the hilt in their nullsec area, and I idolized them back in the day.
Ironically, the pirates weren't amateurs - it was the wannabe anti-pirates who I witnessed as the flavour of the week. The "pirates" i met weren't anti-social paranoids, they were actually a stabilizing presence that kept the riffraff away (like high sec carebears and griefers; those that want to remove ALL risk to themselves while impacting others.)
After a while I managed to secure friendly relations with the locals and played around with the player owned station feature for almost two years before tearing down all but one tower. For a one-man operation it was amazing that I could not only setup and maintain a string of starbases, but also have time to mine, run missions, stalk carebears attempting to mine Jaspet (and kill them while lecturing them about the uselessness of mining something less valuable than veldspar, per cubic meter,) take part in large fleet operations with the local presence, and play around with the exploration features. Oh, plus research blueprints.
I wouldn't have been able to enjoy so many varied activities if the constellation I was in wasn't as stable as it's been. It also helps to have solid local presences in Sinq Laison region (Veto in Groinhard) and Genesis region (Chain of Chaos in Antem) next door...Even though I love to pretend they're public enemies number 1 & 2, i'm very grateful for their stabilizing presence even if i've considered them villains, for years.
And that is why I love Eve-online so much. The vaunted 'sandbox' marketing spiel by CCP versus the stabilizing presence of real eve-online players. Oh, i'm sure there's backstabbing and spies a plenty in this one server universe, yet my faith in a 'player's word is their bond' still endures to this day.