This has been a pretty crazy week in terms of real life commitments that surfaced. Having debated with myself for awhile on whether or not to start a blog, I finally made the plunge. I had expected to get a few blog posts out the door and then settle into a somewhat reliable update schedule but low and behold things arose that I didn't have much control over. Time will tell if things settle down.
Concerning real life versus video game life, most of us would automatically see which one takes precedence. But with EVE there tends to be quite a serious investment whether to a corp/alliance, your money making ventures, or to your own personal goals to see spaceships fly.
As I am attempting a more carefree approach and to just enjoy the game for what it is, I notice that there are certain activities in EVE that I may never experience. These activities don't normally appreciate the "carefree" approach to playing.
A fleet with a huge focus on doctrine is a prime example. To clarify I am not saying these people are necessarily wrong, the reason being is that to accomplish certain tasks or to perform certain maneuvers you need to have everyone on board. With the requirements being met.
I understand this as I have helped run a 40-man raid group in vanilla WoW, and went on to lead my own 10-man raid group in the later expansions. The need for specialization and for everybody to be up to snuff is very important. But with the way EVE's skill system is set up, you can't just take a weekend and grind for the gear you need and then join everybody during the next week's raiding session. Sometimes it takes months to be able to fit t2 modules, or fly the proper ship for the doctrine. For some activities you may need to specialize and require these restrictions to even have a chance for success. But a lot of the time you end up excluding people because they are not "perfect".
A better approach to some of the more casual activities like a nightly roam around the constellation. Is to have your specific fleet doctrine set and then all those people who can't meet the requirements you make it clear that they probably won't receive reps from the logi and that they may not be able to take full advantage of the fleet booster and whatever other bonuses may be produced to benefit the doctrine. With that part clarified, let them join in but remember that since they don't fit the doctrine you will have to consider them less effective in what your main approach would normally be. Does this mean you treat them as meat shields and send them in first to engage? NO! You treat them the same way you normally would if they did fit the doctrine, think of them as a tag along entourage that just might give you the extra bit of dps you need to win a fleet fight.
Which has a better chance of winning: a 40-man doctrine fit fleet, or the same 40-man doctrine fit fleet with a mish mash of 30 other pilots? (This doesn't always work, for example a stealth bomber fleet but you get the idea.)
A good example of this approach is Sugar Kyle's Rawrcat Roam. She has set up something fun to try and include people and is pretty open about what you bring (except wolves). So if you can fit the doctrine you should try to attend, if not, try to go anyways. (Wolves are killed on sight)