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One story of revenge in Eve Online spans four long years

This is why you don’t harass newbies in the world’s most cutthroat MMO

Eve Online Ascension art
Eve Online Ascension art
CCP Games
Charlie Hall is Polygon’s tabletop editor. In 10-plus years as a journalist & photographer, he has covered simulation, strategy, and spacefaring games, as well as public policy.

Eve Online is often described by players not as a game, but as a part-time job. You can do well in the spacefaring MMO, but it takes time and plenty of it. Falling in with the right player-led guild is important, but patience is key.

David “Darvo Thellere” Schmitz proved that a few weeks ago when he made good on a personal vendetta. It’s a tale of revenge four years in the making.

“It all started back in 2013,” Schmitz told Polygon via email. He and another player, who goes by the handle “Lunarion,” had set out to recruit for a small corporation — the Eve equivalent of a guild — from like-minded newbies.

That’s when another player called “Kackpappe” first began to harass them.

Darvo Thellare
Eve Who

Kackpappe was monitoring the help channel, designed to pool new players together and help provide them with an on-ramp into the game. Instead, he used what he learned there to harass them.

“He saw our post and declared war instantly on our corporation,” Schmitz said. “We had no clue what this meant, that people are able to follow you into every system, setup traps for you to login and that we had no realistic chance to fight back in our low-tier frigates.

“Our luck, we found some more experienced players that noticed all this and backed us up. They explained us how to avoid being ganked, how to move in player-versus-player fleets and supported us in fighting back.”

Schmitz says that he and Lunarion even tried to create a new corporation, but Kackpappe kept hounding them. It’s not something that’s against the rules in Eve, but even the most ruthless players give some leniency to those that are so green.

But not Kackpappe.

“He kept [declaring war on] this corporation as well,” Schmitz said. “Kackpappe was hunting us for 3 months. We were not able to do missions, mining or anything else to get money. ... We had a lot of chats with Kackpappe, argued why he would try to kill us, that we are not even worth the time in our small ships. That’s when he stated that he is just [doing it] for fun, to ruin our experience.

“At this point i told him that somewhere and some when, I would find him and I would take all his assets in return.”

Eventually, Kackpappe got bored. But Schmitz never forgot. He says that he and his wingman Lunarion spent years working at the game to become accomplished mercenaries, even fighting against the legendary Pandemic Legion along Eve’s lawless outer rim.

“In what I wanted to achieve,” he said, “I was successful. I’ve met worse people in Eve over the years, people who stole billions from the corporation I was in, spies who gained trust on Teamspeak over a year and then betrayed our group. ... But Kackpappe was the first ‘bad guy‘ I’d ever met in Eve. The first guy that made me angry. And you don’t forget the first one.”

Schmitz’s plan to exact his revenge went into motion in earlier this month. He told the leadership of his new guild the four-year-old story, and they agreed to help Schmitz exact his revenge. He changed his name on Teamspeak to hide his in-game identity, and the guild invited Kackpappe to become a member.

“We made sure that we promised him the holy land and he took the bait,” Schmitz said.

Death is just an inconvenience in Eve. In the fiction of the world, a player’s consciousness simply moves into a new vessel. So to really hurt someone you have to do it the old-fashioned way. You have to take their money.

“When he joined our corporation,” Schmitz said, “the only thing we needed to make sure of was that he would put as many of his assets as possible into his carrier-sized vessel so we could deal the maximum amount of damage to him. We only had one problem: There was no real reason to ask him to put all his stuff into a carrier. Eve players are usually paranoid, and asking this would be strange.”

Eve Online war header CCP Games

During the interview, Schmitz learned that the leader of Kackpappe’s old guild was pissed at him. He had blockaded Kackpappe, pinning him down with his own super capital ship. So Schmitz’s guild made a show of helping to break him free, and encouraged him to load his assets up for a clean getaway.

“When we landed,” Schmitz said, “we threatened his former CEO to not camp members of our corporation because we would take this as an aggressive act against our alliance.

“This poor guy was very mad and we knew that he’d never apologize to Kackpappe, but that’s exactly what we asked for.”

After formal diplomatic negotiations between the two guilds, a deal was struck and Kackpappe made speed to get the hell out of there with nearly everything he owned stuffed in the trunk of his starship.

“When everything was ready, we lit ... a beacon,” Schmitz said, helping guide Kackpappe to a safe place to dock his ship. That’s where the rest of the guild was waiting to spring the trap.

“The moment he landed, a fleet of our ships was waiting for him,” Schmitz said. “We immediately disrupted his warp so he could not go anywhere and opened fire. The Teamspeak comms were very calm. He just asked why he was getting damaged.

“‘Because we are shooting you,’ I explained to him and changed my name back to Darvo Thellere [in Teamspeak]. I also invited Lunarion to our channel at this exact moment so he could witness the revenge.”

So what were Kackpappe’s final words, as his hull imploded and all his belongings were vented into space?

“Argh fuck... Darvo Thellere!” Or at least that’s what Schmitz told us.

But the story doesn’t end there.

“A few days later, I had a chat with him,” Schmitz said. “He told me that he apologized for how he insulted me back in the past and that this revenge made him think about how he had behaved towards other players in the past.

“He congratulated me for being able to hold my promise and wished me good luck for my further Eve career.”

Nothing like a happy ending.

You can find Schmitz’s original account on Reddit. Proof of his handiwork was verified online thanks to zKillboard.