Ben Kuchera / Dabe Alan

Greetings from null-sec! The Penny Arcade Report tours the offices of CCP

Greetings from null-sec! The Penny Arcade Report tours the offices of CCP

It's hard to talk about CCP, the developer behind the space ship MMO EVE Online, without talking about Icelanders and their culture. The company flew me in [Disclosure: CCP paid for the hotel and airfare] to report on the annual Fanfest celebration, where approximately 1,000 players and EVE enthusiasts visit Reykjavík for a weekend of discussion, celebration, presentations, and inebriations. I spoke with Jon Lander, the senior producer of EVE Online, and he said he went out Saturday night for a few beers with friends, and “accidentally 4 a.m.'d it,” which is the first time I've ever heard anyone use “4 a.m.” as a verb. In Iceland, people use “4 a.m.” in this way all the time, and the context is usually a question about why the person in question didn't “5 a.m. it.” Lander found out there was footage of him dancing to thumping music with another developer wearing a Russian hat from that epic night, and said video was going to be shown at the beginning of the World of Darkness panel. He was scared of repercussions. When Lander watched the video, he noticed CEO Hilmar Pétursson pogo-ing across the frame in his own state of drunken bliss. “I'm good, the boss is good, this is fine!” he said, laughing. He woke up at 7 a.m. the next morning to go into the office and continue the show. The people of CCP party like Vikings but work like accountants. The people who make EVE and the players who pay for the game on a monthly basis are an odd combination of warm, friendly, dedicated, and slightly insane. To give you some idea, I'd like to point you to a promotion video from a few years ago. This is the reserved and professional gentleman named Sveinn Jóhannesson Kjarval who took me on the tour, and at the time he seemed very low-key and humble. I guess it was just early. Enjoy!In case you want to avoid hearing not safe for work lyrics, the chorus is as follows:

We're CCP! We march on fearlessly!
Excellent is what we strive to be!
If you're going to follow us to the top:
HARDEN. THE. FUCK. UP.

The company makes a game for core players who love space ships and the politics of deep space. The game is hard, the company is dedicated to its core product in a way that seems crazed from the outside, and their offices are just as cool as you'd imagine. Let's take a look. A quick note: my DSLR's batteries didn't like the Icelandic power, so I had to take these pictures with my iPad. The quality isn't exactly as good as I would have liked, but I hope it's tolerable. We'll also have an in-depth look at Dust 514 in the coming days.